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Amiga GUI Operating Systems Hardware Linux

Amiga Returns With Lackluster Linux-Powered Mini PC 343

crookedvulture writes "Commodore has revealed the Amiga mini, a small-form-factor system that runs a custom Linux distro dubbed Commodore OS Vision. A trailer for the OS hardly inspires confidence, and the rest of the system doesn't help. While the Amiga mini features a high-end Intel desktop CPU and modern conveniences like Blu-ray, USB 3.0, and 802.11n Wi-Fi, it's stuck with one of the slowest graphics chips Nvidia makes. Some of the other specifications are head-scratchers, too. The mini comes with a whopping 16GB of RAM but only a terabyte of storage. You'll have to pay extra to get an SSD, which makes the $2500 asking price particularly onerous. The case, Blu-ray drive, and power supply are being made available separately, but at $345, they're hardly a bargain. Add this to the list of nostalgia-baiting remakes that don't live up to their inspiration." Update: It looks like Commodore has dropped the price after receiving a lot of negative feedback.
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Amiga Returns With Lackluster Linux-Powered Mini PC

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  • by suso ( 153703 ) * on Thursday March 22, 2012 @08:47AM (#39439283) Homepage Journal

    This is not Commodore, this is not the Amiga. This is a fucking bastard.

    • by dintech ( 998802 ) on Thursday March 22, 2012 @09:01AM (#39439415)

      Also, a the end of the trailer it says "Commodore OS Vision coming 11.11.11".
      I suppose they were planning to release it but then they took an arrow to the knee.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward

        Also, a the end of the trailer it says "Commodore OS Vision coming 11.11.11".
        I suppose they were planning to release it but then they took an arrow to the knee.

        You're able to grab an early beta... which is just a bastardized version of Linux Mint with a godawful ugly shell and cheesy robot voiceover... i thought maybe it would have some goodness centered around C64 emu, but nothing more then you can get from the FOSS community already...


    • by crazyjj ( 2598719 ) * on Thursday March 22, 2012 @09:43AM (#39439807)

      This pseudo-Commodore company [wikipedia.org] (this is NOT the original Commodore company, which went out of business a long time ago) did the same thing with the Commodore 64 a while back, releasing a supposed clone [wikipedia.org] of the classic machine that was basically just a custom case fitted around a PC running Ubuntu. The world was underwhelmed, to say the least.

      • by tripleevenfall ( 1990004 ) on Thursday March 22, 2012 @10:16AM (#39440153)

        Know what else has a Core i7 processor? a Mac Mini.

        They only have 4GB of memory by default, but at $999 you can get one with dual 7200rpm 500GB hard drives, Intel HD 3000 graphics, and a copy of Lion Server. There's no bluray, but it's also less than half the price of this Amiga DOA box.

        When your product is a less attractive knockoff of an Apple design and somehow you manage to more than double an Apple price... I'm guessing your future does not include being filthy stinking rich.

        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by Anonymous Coward

          Holy smokes!

          The world has started spinning in reverse because the Apple product is a comparatively better buy.

          The sky is falling!!!!11!

          • by ILongForDarkness ( 1134931 ) on Thursday March 22, 2012 @12:03PM (#39441511)

            I found the iMac 27" a better deal a year and a half ago when I was looking for an all in one. At the time the only thing I found really worth comparing with it was a HP model but it only had a 19" screen, and i3 and less graphics for I think it was ~200 less. So for 200 I got 9" more of a higher res display, an i7 quad, and a better graphics card. Made sense to me at the time. It all depends on what you want sometimes apple is a bit more but gives you a better screen and a little boost somewhere.

          • by Osgeld ( 1900440 )

            the mac was always a better buy, unless you wanted a 2500$ computer that did the same things as a 199$ SEGA Genesis

            even back in the day (watch computer chronicles) Amiga struggled with what you actually did with the computer ... multitasking OS awesome, now this game shows off the sound and graphics, and this game blah blah blah. They really never did have a super strong selling point to the computer user, it was just another home computer with limited software, tons of games, some niche uses at the same t

        • by petermgreen ( 876956 ) <[ten.knil01p] [ta] [hsawgulp]> on Thursday March 22, 2012 @11:01AM (#39440605) Homepage

          Know what else has a Core i7 processor? a Mac Mini.

          The chip in the Mac Mini is a mobile chip while the chip in this thing is an unlocked desktop chip. Don't let the fact that they share the i7 brand fool you into thinking they are the same thing.

    • by amiga3D ( 567632 ) on Thursday March 22, 2012 @10:06AM (#39440043)

      I wish they'd just let the poor Amiga rest in peace. Far, far, far ahead of it's time and an early death due to morons in the HQ. Mehdi Ali and Irving Gould....the anti-Jobs. Together they wrote the manual on how to mismanage a billion dollar corporation into bankruptcy in just a few short years. Towards the end the small investors grouped together to hire a Private Investigator to find out where the clandestine stock-holder meeting was being held so they could show up to give them hell. If anyone had ever compared a pitiful late 80's early 90's pc to an Amiga they'd never have believed how things turned out.

    • by Phreakiture ( 547094 ) on Thursday March 22, 2012 @10:24AM (#39440247) Homepage

      I had three Amigas. I really enjoyed using those machines. I loved the fact that it was a true plug N play platform while my PC-using friends were still fucking around with interrupts, DMA channels, shared memory slots and jumpers. I loved the fact that they had not only video acceleration but also audio acceleration. I loved the fact that colour video and stereo audio were in all models. I still think HAM was a pretty cool compression algorithm, especially in that it was implemented in the hardware and could be decompressed as the monitor scanned, reducing the amount of video RAM (or, chip RAM as it was called in the Amiga paradigm) needed for a full-colour picture (remember, RAM was expensive in those days)

      Ultimately, though, it is necessary to face a few facts. Commodore was run by a bunch of asshats. They effectively killed off this beloved platform. The platform is dead. Slapping the name on a LInux computer will never bring back what the Amiga was, and it will certainly not make the so-named computer what the Amiga could have and should have been. As much as I love Linux, I am not interested. It is like one of those modern radios that has a plastic enclosure designed to look like a classic cathedral radio. It isn't, it can't be, and it won't be what was lost to time. Enjoy the nostalgia, but eschew the exploitation.

      Amiga is dead like Elvis. Mourn and move on.

    • by nurb432 ( 527695 )

      ya, but what would you expect these days?

      To be fair, not sure what use it would be if it was *really* AmigaOS, there would be nothing current to run on it, and be damned expensive not ruining on a commodity architecture.

      Unfortunately for people who loved the Ataris and Amigas, the time for 'special' has long since passed. ( and we lost.. )

    • by hairyfeet ( 841228 ) <bassbeast1968@gm ... minus herbivore> on Thursday March 22, 2012 @10:51AM (#39440485) Journal

      Its just someone who bought the brand trying to cash in, is anyone surprised?

      I'll get hate for saying this but here goes: you will NEVER see anything like the Amiga ever again so give it up, okay? We are talking about a machine filled to the brim with custom designed chips with a custom built OS to run on top of it. To build something with THAT level of customization today would probably cost north of 100 million and would virtually guarantee that Windows would never run on it which would be the kiss of death due to the lack of apps. Now with Linux providing plenty of source code one could compile custom versions of many apps but again that would raise the price and today you either race to the bottom (MSFT) or you have enough brand loyalty and cool factor to allow one to charge high prices (Apple) and sadly Amiga would have neither today.

      Lets face it guys what made Amiga so fucking cool was back then one could actually afford to breadboard an entirely new chip design and hire enough coders to build an entire OS just to squeeze every drop of power you could out of those chips. Hell theoretically you could do that today, can you imagine an OS that was built mostly in ASM to squeeze every last drop of power out of say an AMD 6 core and 7950 GPU? It would be so insanely fast and powerful it would make everything else look like bad jokes! But unlike when the Amiga came out PCs today are so damned overpowered that frankly it doesn't matter how much bloat and bling MSFT and Apple add to their OSes as we have cycles to spare everywhere. We have multicores hitting crazy speeds, assloads of RAM, and GPUs with hundreds of stream processors. That is the exact polar opposite to what we had when the Amiga was released, where machines were lucky if they had enough oomph to run a GUI at all and slow was pretty much taken for granted. All that customization made Amiga so damned much faster than everyone else it was just insane, it was a multitasking monster in the days of shitty single tasking DOS.

      Look, I can understand why there are some geeks that secretly pray for the return of Amiga, I really do. I hung onto OS/2 for waaay longer than i should hoping and praying IBM would get their head out of their ass and market it right, but they didn't know what to do with it and totally killed it, same thing here. Commodore was a "cheap prices above all" kind of company and Amiga was this expensive badass ubercomputer that they really didn't have a damned clue how to sell and corporate stupidity killed it. But as much as we'd like to go and hit the reset button, as much as many of us wish it would have ended up Apple VS MSFT VS OS/2 VS Amiga, sadly things didn't work out that way. so let the old gal rest in peace, she had a good run, was ahead of her time, but that time is past. Companies like this just trying to ring a few more pennies out of the property are just a sad cash in, hoping there are enough geeks with money and a bad case of nostalgia they can make a quick buck.

      • You were an OS/2 fan? I never owned it (was a student @ that time w/o a PC of my own) but I read about it and was rooting for it to succeed. Since I learned my Computer Engineering on a PPC 601, I was rooting for OS/2-PPC to come out. It never did - IBM was building Workplace OS on top of the Mach 3 microkernel, and unfortunately, the Mach 3 was a dog - every OS built on it has been a disaster. Finally, IBM pulled the plug on it, and there was no special non-Mac OS for PPC alone other than BeOS for a br

      • I remember a story about one of the first vendor shows the Amiga crew went to. They had a ton of custom chips handwired together, sitting under the table, and they said they just prayed that no one would accidentally kick the boxes. Truly the wild west days of the personal desktop computer scene. I'm glad I was (just) old enough to understand what was going on then. But you're correct, we probably won't see something like that again, until we do.

  • by yvesdandoy ( 44789 ) on Thursday March 22, 2012 @08:50AM (#39439305)

    Who said Macs were expensive again ?

    • by durrr ( 1316311 ) on Thursday March 22, 2012 @09:02AM (#39439423)

      Everyone, just because you find a worse offender doesn't mean the lesser one if redeemed.

      This is stupid though, $2500 for generic mini-itx hardware with a retarded OS? Is this a joke or something?

    • by jellomizer ( 103300 ) on Thursday March 22, 2012 @09:49AM (#39439889)
      The problems with Macs isn't that they are expensive but you only have a small selection of models to choose from.
      If you take a Mac and Price spec for Spec (Every spec even if you don't think it is a big deal such as glowing keyboard with light sensor or weight and thinness) You will find that the Price of the Mac is the same as any other new Commercially built system out there of the same quality. However the Mac may not be a value to you because a lot of the stuff that comes with the Mac you may not need and for the feature that you do want you may have to get extra stuff that you will pay for that you may not use...

      So if you want a Laptop that is Light, and Fast. For PC's you have a bunch of options many without too many extras. For Apple you have only a couple of models if that to choose from.

      It isn't that Apple is gouging customers (the Apple Tax) you are getting what you pay for. The crux of the matter is you may be getting more then you need or want.
      • by StikyPad ( 445176 ) on Thursday March 22, 2012 @01:36PM (#39442733) Homepage

        If you take a Mac and Price spec for Spec (Every spec even if you don't think it is a big deal such as glowing keyboard with light sensor or weight and thinness) You will find that the Price of the Mac is the same as any other new Commercially built system out there of the same quality.

        For the very low-end models, maybe, but when you look at the price of the higher models and upgrades -- literally comparing Apples to Apples -- it's readily apparent that their prices are way off, and egregiously so.

        Let's compare two "base" iMacs, the only noted difference being the processor and HD:
        21.5" Core i5 2.5GHz & 500GB [apple.com] -> 21.5" Core i5 2.7GHz & 1TB [apple.com] [$300 difference]
        Core i5-2400S 2.5GHz $184 & Seagate Barracuda 500GB $84 (Total: $268) -> Core i5-2500S 2.7GHz $205 & Segate 1 Barracuda TB $109 (Total: $314)
        Actual Difference: $46 Apple's Markup: 552%
        Sources: Intel's price list [intc.com] 500GB @ NewEgg [newegg.com] 1TB @ NewEgg [newegg.com]

        Component upgrades for the second iMac [apple.com]:
        2.7GHz Core i5 -> 2.8GHz Core i7 [Add $200.00]
        Core i5-2500S 2.7GHz $205 -> Core i7-2600S $294 Actual Difference: $89 Apple's Markup: 125%
        Source: Same as above

        4GB -> 8GB 1333MHz DDR3 SDRAM - 2x4GB [Add $200.00]
        4GB 1333MHz DDR3 $25 x2 = $50. Actual Difference: $25 Apple's Markup: 700%
        Source: The most expensive laptop 1333MHz DDR3 SDRAM @ NewEgg [newegg.com]

        4GB -> 16GB 1333MHz DDR3 SDRAM - 4x4GB [Add $600.00]
        4GB 1333MHz DDR3 $25 x4 = $100. Actual Difference: $75 Apple's Markup: 700%
        Source: Same as above.

        1TB -> 2TB 7200RPM Serial ATA Drive [Add $150.00]
        Seagate Barracuda 1TB $109 -> Seagate 2TB $130 Actual Difference: $11 Apple's Markup: 1263%
        Source: 1TB @ NewEgg [newegg.com] 2TB @ NewEgg [newegg.com]

        And then there's the whole issue of using mobile components in a desktop. Why would they do that? Not to provide value -- mobile components are generally more expensive and lower performing then their desktop components -- but to cram them into a retarded form factor. Sorry, Apple's tax is alive and well, and it's insulting to an informed consumer. You can throw together a *better* system for well less than what Apple charges for its iMac and as a bonus, you don't have to buy a new your monitor when you upgrade your entire system. And for $28 and a little pre-planning, you can even throw Lion on it or run it in a VM. Yes, you have to learn or know how to do it, but as they say, ignorance can be expensive.

  • Oh wow. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 22, 2012 @08:52AM (#39439335)

    _Only_ a terabyte of storage?

    Since when is that a little amount of storage?

    • Re:Oh wow. (Score:4, Insightful)

      by stoolpigeon ( 454276 ) * <bittercode@gmail> on Thursday March 22, 2012 @08:58AM (#39439375) Homepage Journal

      at that price point it isn't much. my $400 acer desktop came with a terabyte drive in it.

    • Re:Oh wow. (Score:5, Informative)

      by realityimpaired ( 1668397 ) on Thursday March 22, 2012 @09:00AM (#39439391)

      _Only_ a terabyte of storage?

      Since when is that a little amount of storage?

      In a $2500 computer? You can get a 2TB drive for about $15 more than the cost of a 1TB drive. The upgrade to 3TB still adds about $50 to the price, and 4TB even more, but in a system that's got a base price of $2500, it seems like a really bad decision made by beancounters to scrimp on something like the hard drive, especially when the *retail* difference in price to double the storage is less than 1% of the list price of the device.

      • Re: (Score:2, Flamebait)

        You can get a 2TB drive for about $15 more than the cost of a 1TB drive.

        That upgrade costs about 12 thousand pounds on the apple store.

        • Now, be fair. It's available for the low, low price of one thousand pounds or thereabouts, last time I checked. Bargain.

          • Or about $150 on the US Apple store (just checked). As usual, exchange rates in Apple land are a bit... different than elsewhere.

        • Actually, it costs £122 (in the Mac Pro - the laptops can't be configured with more than 750GB), irrespective of whether you upgrade the single 1TB disk to a 2TB disk, or you add a second 2TB disk. Adding a second 2TB disk is £245. The cost of buying a 2TB hard disk yourself is about £80-100 at the moment, and it takes under 5 minutes to fit into a Mac Pro, so Apple is charging about £2000/hour for someone to do the installation for you. By coincidence, this is about the same amou
    • _Only_ a terabyte of storage?

      Since when is that a little amount of storage?

      When you ask $2500 for the computer. For that price you should get a computer with 1TB of SSD.

    • Currently internal SATA3 one terabyte drives are less than $100, so yeah - on a $2500 computer it doesn't look like much storage.

      Now if it was 20 years ago, I might agree with you.
    • I only have 160gb drive on a brand new laptop...
      Granted it is a solid state drive. But in depending on your use we now have a culture where we don't always need the super sized drives anymore.

      160gb is great for normal use. If you are not going be doing movies. If you are going with storing movies. Or excess of music then you will need more storage. But if you are going to browse the web, write software, and run normal applications then 160gb is good enough.
  • Pricepoint fail (Score:5, Insightful)

    by talexb ( 223672 ) on Thursday March 22, 2012 @08:53AM (#39439343) Homepage Journal

    Guys, welcome to 2012. Now, about the price on your unit .. way, way too high.

    Twenty years ago, a Cadillac PC was three to four thousand bucks. These days you can get an amazing PC for under a grand. I got a used Dell for $600, including tax, with dual core, 16G RAM and a 1T drive.

    I don't even care what it does -- it's too much money. So, good luck with that.

    • Re:Pricepoint fail (Score:5, Interesting)

      by NJRoadfan ( 1254248 ) on Thursday March 22, 2012 @09:00AM (#39439393)
      How about $250? I built a friend a Newegg shell shocker deal machine last week. Admittedly it isn't top of the line (Biostar MB, flimsy case, Pentium G850, 4GB RAM, 500GB HD, DVD burner), but its pretty darned fast for what he uses it for. If it wasn't for the floods, it likely would have come with a 1TB HD instead. Desktop parts are pretty cheap right now.
    • Re:Pricepoint fail (Score:5, Interesting)

      by realityimpaired ( 1668397 ) on Thursday March 22, 2012 @09:10AM (#39439493)

      Twenty years ago, a Cadillac PC was three to four thousand bucks. These days you can get an amazing PC for under a grand. I got a used Dell for $600, including tax, with dual core, 16G RAM and a 1T drive.

      Case in point, I put together a Core i5 2500k (overclocked to 4.7GHz), 16GB of RAM, a Radeon HD 6870, 16GB of RAM, 1TB drive w/ 60GB SSD for cache (using the Z68 motherboard) for under $1000, less than a month ago. I did salvage the optical drive, monitor, keyboard, and mouse from an old system, but everything else was new. Even if you pick up a *really* nice 24" monitor, it's still under $1500.

      For $2500, you can buy a *really* nice iMac, and get better technical support. (as much as I loathe Apple's business practices, their customer service is *really* good, and I'd recommend them to anybody that actually needs customer service/tech support).

    • "a used Dell"... Ok... you are really going into an Apples/Oranges comparison.
      It is like saying that a new Honda Fit is expensive because it cost more then getting a used 1990 Honda Civic.

      We don't really have Cadillac PC's anymore, mostly because PC's arn't cool anymore. A laptop (where a high end system could still set you back 3k) is more common.

      Back in time Gateway 2000 use to make the Cadillac of PC's Until the late 1990's where they reached the peak of people who wanted the high quality PC's sure gett
      • Ok, forget comparison to used PCs then. What you say about the company lacking economies of scale may be true as well, but the real question remains: what market do they possibly hope to enter with this thing? Media PCs / Media players / DVRs? Gaming rigs? Small, quiet general purpose machines? Cool looking computers that are fit for a place in the living room? Machines that come with loads of geek cred? On any of these markets, this device will lose out to cheaper, better and better known alternativ
      • They didn't develop an OS though. It's a Linux Distro. I'll grant you it's not free to put together a Linux distro either, but it's a Hell of a lot cheaper than writing an OS from scratch. Even buying the components at retail cost, they're essentially charging around $1500 for a roll-your-own Linux and some ugly case graphics.

  • NOT AMIGA OS (Score:5, Informative)

    by JoeCommodore ( 567479 ) <larry@portcommodore.com> on Thursday March 22, 2012 @08:58AM (#39439367) Homepage

    Note these aren't the same guys working on the Amiga OS

    The Amiga mini they use their own re branded Linux Commodore OS. Amiga OS is a totally different animal.

    • by suso ( 153703 ) *

      Yep. Its basically no better than those eBay sellers that try to sell open source apps like Blender, Gimp and Audacity like its commercial software.

  • by Lumpy ( 12016 ) on Thursday March 22, 2012 @08:58AM (#39439369) Homepage

    The KDE skin they are using?

    That is the coolest KDE setup I have ever seen. Most of them look like crap, and that one looks great!

  • Amiga? (Score:5, Informative)

    by SirDice ( 1548907 ) on Thursday March 22, 2012 @08:58AM (#39439371)
    If it doesn't run AmigaOS it's not an Amiga. Heck, AmigaOS 4.1 was released not too long ago. http://www.amigaos.net/ [amigaos.net]
  • by sTERNKERN ( 1290626 ) on Thursday March 22, 2012 @08:59AM (#39439381)
    Back in the old days Amiga, C=64, ZX81, etc. names meant something.. just let them die peacefully, do not tread on their graves by naming a plain today's PC as one of those.
  • Even if they are completely refitted and tuned, an oldtimer will always be an expensive and slow car. Still, people buy it.

    And they sometimes have a blu-ray installed in it.

    • by dejanc ( 1528235 )
      True, but this is not an old-timer. This is an equivalent of "2012 Abarth Mini" which looks like Peugeot 307 and costs like Porsche Panamera... It's neither Fiat 500 Abarth or Mini nor it has the value of Panamera and looks and feels like it was made this year (which it was).
  • Basic stuff (Score:4, Interesting)

    by jones_supa ( 887896 ) on Thursday March 22, 2012 @09:06AM (#39439459)
    It seems to be pretty much a standard mini-ITX build. Even the case is a Streacom F1C [streacom.com], with the Amiga logo etched on it.
  • by teslar ( 706653 ) on Thursday March 22, 2012 @09:07AM (#39439469)

    Notice how that summary is about a product yet it is almost exclusively filled with negatives? Ladies and gentlemen, we give you the.... anti-slashvertisement.

    I wonder what happens if the next story is a slashvertisment and the two touch?

  • Who will see the name and want to buy it for the nostalgia fix. There's going to be some.
  • GPU (Score:4, Interesting)

    by dirtyhippie ( 259852 ) on Thursday March 22, 2012 @09:12AM (#39439515) Homepage

    Serious question: what do people need a beefy GPU for on a machine with an alternative OS? You already can't run the latest PC/windows games, and you don't need a spec-tastic GPU for running 99% of other applications. Am I missing something, or is this just hardware lust?

  • by basotl ( 808388 ) on Thursday March 22, 2012 @09:16AM (#39439557)
    Commodore International went bancrupt in 1994. It was bought by Escom which also went bankrupt in 1996. In September 1997, the Commodore brand name was acquired by Dutch computer maker Tulip Computers NV. In late 2004, Tulip sold the Commodore name to Yeahronimo Media Ventures. Yeahronimo Media Ventures soon renamed itself to Commodore International Corporation. On June 24, 2009, CIC renamed itself to Reunite Investments. CIC's founder, Ben van Wijhe, bought a Hong Kong-based company called Asiarim, and Asiarim purchased the Commodore brand from Reunite. Asiarim then changed its name to Commodore Holdings Corporation.

    Ownership of the Amiga line passed through a few companies, from Escom of Germany in 1995, and then to U.S. PC clone maker Gateway in 1997, before an exclusive lifetime license was made to Amiga, Inc. in 2000. On March 15, 2004, Amiga, Inc. announced that on April 23, 2003 it had transferred its rights over Amiga OS to Itec, LLC, later acquired by KMOS, Inc. On March 16, 2005, KMOS, Inc. announced it's change of corporate name to Amiga, Inc.

    Commodore USA, LLC was founded in April 2010. Commodore USA licensed the Commodore brand from Commodore Licensing BV on August 25, 2010 and the Amiga brand from Amiga, Inc. on August 31, 2010.

    TL;DR This is not the Commodore International you knew and loved.
  • A custom Linux distro? What's the point of calling it Amiga then? They should have made a PowerPC machine, running the actual AmigaOS, then they could call it an Amiga. Hell, if you install AROS on any regular PC, it will be far more truly Amiga than this junk.

  • i swear they tried to re-enter the market like 8-10 years ago, also to lackluster reception. wtf is wrong with these people?
  • by meburke ( 736645 ) on Thursday March 22, 2012 @09:23AM (#39439617)

    I first sold Commodore in Minneapolis back when they were making calculators in 1968. They came out with a 30-lb., programmable calculator that used magnetic strips to hold the programs. It only held 30 instructions, but it had recursion so it outperformed Friden and Marchant's competitive products. (One was 60 lbs and had two units connected by a thick cable, the other needed to be reprogrammed by performing the operation so it could be memorized before starting to produce any useful work.) I sold a bunch to Bell. With no printer (nixie-tube readout) an office of 30 people was practically silent. Bell had open rooms filled with clacking and clanking calulators in those days. Now we complain that the person next to us has a loud keyboard... Well, I made some money, but you should have heard the owner complain about the money he had tied up in Commodore. I didn't really know what he meant at the time.

    Jump to 1978: I'm the first one selling Apple II and Commodore PET computers in Anchorage. I had to order 5 PET units at a time. My cost was $999.00 and the selling price was $1499.00. As long as I had a $5000 deposit with Commodore I had a $5000 "line of credit". But the manufacturing was lousy. I typically had shipments come in with two or more units DOA (and one where 4 out of my 5 units were DOA), which I had to RMA and wait for them to be returned. I needed stock? No problem: Commodore would gladly take another $5000 deposit and let me order 5 more units...

    Jump to 1988: I'm selling computers to NASA in Houston for a store that also carries the Commodore Amiga. And guess what?..My manager is complaining about the same lousy manufacturing and policies that I did 10 years ago.

    Jump to 1993: I helped set up a computer department for BizMart (now OfficeMax) and they are trying to deal with the same lousy stocking problems from Commodore. Right around Christmas time we sold a lot of Commodore Amiga and associated products. After Christmas the returns started coming in: It seems that we had all the marginal units dumped on us to make the Commodore numbers look good for some type of joint venture or purchase deal.

    I believe in my heart that Commodore would have gone out of business if they didn't have the CMOS manufacturing to keep them afloat. I pity the vendors stuck dealing with Commodore, but it will probably be someone clueless like Best Buy anyway. The commodore products were somewhat innovative, but the company was not consumer or vendor friendly.

    • by Nethead ( 1563 )

      I too worked at a Commodore shop. Our "RMA" policy was to buy a good C64 from Toys-r-Us and swap the bad part (very often the power supply) we got from Commodore and return it to Toys-r-Us.

      I remember on the SX64 the power supply would die if you just looked at the 9VAC pins on the user port wrong. The case mounted fuse wouldn't blow, the little diode sized one wrapped up in the supply transformer would. I made some nice spare change replacing that fuse with a bit of wire.

      Still, the first portable color c

  • by rossdee ( 243626 )

    So what makes this machine an Amiga?

    FWIW I owned amiga computehttp://hardware.slashdot.org/story/12/03/22/1241200/amiga-returns-with-lackluster-linux-powered-mini-pc#r(s) from July 86 until July 02 (At which point I moved to the US, so sold them or gave them away.

  • Every thing since has been the warmed over remains. I'd love to know what value the Commodore brand has any more. I don't believe many people under the age of 30 would even recognise it and those over the age of 30 would have the sense to know that usually it's slapped on some crappy OEM rebadged piece of shit.
  • The "new" Commodore company is selling PCs under both the Amiga and Commodore badges, but they are functionally interchangeable. They are based on the same hardware, and run the same software. They just fit in different form factors, and carry slightly different price points, as far as I can tell.

    It seems like they resurrected the Amiga brand name just to see who they could see who they could sell it to with a fancier badge. Very reminiscent of the Lexus ES / Toyota Avalon / Toyota Camry situation wh
  • I bet I could build an Amiga for far less and make everyone think it's an Amiga. I actually prefer the look and feel of the old hardware. Wish I could get my hands on an Amiga 2000 system real cheap.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    Please, please, please check out the "real" Amiga descendants that carry on the spirit of Amiga:

    Amiga OS4 from Hyperion, MorphOS from, er, the MorphOS team and AROS from the, er AROS, team.

    The first runs on custom built/designed PPC based machines - expensive, but unusual

    The second runs on PPC-based MACs - cheap, but oldish

    The latter is an open-source AmigaOS re-implementation and runs on x86, PPC and ARM.

    ALL of them have far more to do with Amiga than this Linux on an expensive box nonsense.

  • $345 for just the box, BluRay drive, and power supply? For another $250, Apple will give me pretty much the same thing, but with a computer and a bunch of software inside. (OK, only DVD instead of BluRay, but who still uses optical media these days?)

  • It's a bit pathetic that the case for this "Amiga" is essentially a bad Apple Mini knockoff with some Commodore and Amiga logo photoshopped on.

    Couldn't they have invested effort in getting a custom case designed that evokes the original? The Amiga 1000 had a cool looking case which could look awesome as a modernized, compact unit. I wish the Apple aesthetic would just die. Not that it's a bad design, but most companies, outside of Japan anyway, seem too uncreative to come up with their own designs.

    And they

  • Even in death, the poor franchise can't catch a break. It keeps getting reanimated zombie-style by people whose goal seems to be:

    Manage and market a computer product WORSE the the original (record-settingly bad) crew?
    Challenge Accepted.

    And we can add mediocre engineering to boot!

    Seriously. The one huge technological advantage the Amiga had over its market competitors "back in the day" was high-performance graphics hardware. Labeling a generic Mini-ITX with a low-performance Nvidia chipset an "Amiga" is li

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