Apple 1: What's the cheapest cost to get it to work(excluding the ACI)?

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Joined: Jan 4 2015
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How much is the cheapest expected cost for the Apple 1 parts/components if I just want a working replica. I'm talking about parts needed to get either Mimeo 1 or Newton 1 to work.

The Apple 1 kit(excluding PROMs) at http://www.unicornelectronics.com/Apple1/Apple1kit.html is $666.66. Is there any way to get it to $400 or less for all the components

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Joined: Feb 28 2015
Posts: 34
Re: Apple 1: What's the cheapest cost to get it to ...

You could either rob them or make some of your own components out of paper-clips. Not a very useful post...

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Tom Porter

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Joined: Nov 16 2011
Posts: 2413
Re: Apple 1: What's the cheapest cost to get it to ...

Hello snazzify,

bad news for you:
The unicorn set IS the cheapest solution....
It even now consists often with cheaper parts ( just for example the sockets ).....
If you would try to get the original TI sockets you might easily be forced to spend more
than 300 bucks just for the sockets !

Those guys who really look for the correct parts spend more than 1500 bucks easily.....
or even more..... for example a ceramic 6502 also won´t be availiable for less then 500 bucks....
some have spent more than 2500 Bucks for correct parts and have been hunting for such parts
for more than 2 to 3 years....

but if you remain just with the demand to a working replica the Unicorn-set will be your
one and only choice....
just be happy it exists at all ! Imagine you would not have the
oppertunity to get all parts from one single source with one single transportation fee
and one adress in case of claim for replacement if something isn´t working...

Just besides a remark:
I do have a problem with the changing mentality along the past 5 years or so......
there seems to be a growing crowd of people that really believe in the myth "that things are
given away for free" - and that this is a true (?) myth......
in fact it´s not that way - even if you read advertisements in internet that stuff "is for free" -
it´s not true - it remains a myth ! Stuff is never for free - you have to pay by the one or other way...
the tragic is that most of that people discover the price they have to pay, when it´s too late to change their
mind and they discover that the "price for free" is often much more expensive than purchasing the stuff
the normal regular way..... am i a member of a group with destiny of extinction because we still use a thing
called brain ? Does the future of the population really have better chance of evolution, if we refuse to use
the stuff between our ears ? Puzzled

sincerely
speedyG

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In early days I had a lot of money but no time - now I have no money but a lot of time....
the second part includes less friends but a lot more joy on life....

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Joined: Jan 4 2015
Posts: 68
Re: Apple 1: What's the cheapest cost to get it to ...

hi speedyG,

I know that "There ain't no such thing as a free lunch". I really just want to know and gather some info from you experts here on what is the cheapest way to get it to work especially for newbies like me. It's really pretty overwhelming for starters like me with little experience and knowledge on electronics but im determined to do it. Smile

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Posts: 68
Re: Apple 1: What's the cheapest cost to get it to ...

i just found this link from Mike Willegal's website: http://www.willegal.net/appleii/a1bom.htm

The total says $436.66 for all parts and components. Is this still true now?

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Posts: 2413
Re: Apple 1: What's the cheapest cost to get it to ...

Hello snazzify,

well that´s a question Mike will probably reply to....
don´t know from which date this list is.....
maybe 2 or 3 years ago.....

just besides one question:
what do you intend to do with empty PROM chips ?
Do you know how difficult it´s to get in touch with equipment able to program that PROM´s ?

And one thing is for sure:
for example the large electrolytic caps:
You won´t get parts that cheap that even have nearly similar look....

and just another question besides:
You also remember my reply above mentioning one source, and only one time transportation fees ?
Picking up stuff from different sources will drop cost ??? See that cost in the list ?

Not to talk about various cheap sources, that sell damaged parts like at ebay sometimes....
you´d better check related threads here from past 6 months....

Sorry - but I´m off from this thread... good luck !
speedyG

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In early days I had a lot of money but no time - now I have no money but a lot of time....
the second part includes less friends but a lot more joy on life....

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Joined: Oct 9 2011
Posts: 1063
Re: Apple 1: What's the cheapest cost to get it to ...

snazzify wrote:

i just found this link from Mike Willegal's website: http://www.willegal.net/appleii/a1bom.htm

The total says $436.66 for all parts and components. Is this still true now?

That is a very old BOM. Costs have gone up a lot as parts have gotten rarer. Also when Mike was putting together his BOM, I think he was buying parts in bulk to keep costs down.

Unicorn is the cheapest way to go, but won't even be close to date correct or package correct parts.

As speedy has said people have spent thousands putting theirs together. Actually Speedy was a little low on the money some have spent. I'd like to find the person who got a white 6502 for $500 in the past few years and I know some people who have paid over 2k for a correct package one for a pre-NTI system.

Also something else to keep in mind. There are a lot of bad parts out there. So just because you put together a mimeo doesn't mean it will work when you try it with NOS parts, you can get bad parts and some of the more common bad ones are not cheap like the 2504v.

We aren't trying to scare you away, but joining the Apple-1 reproduction club isn't cheap. It's just much cheaper than joining the original Apple-1 club.

If you want something hardware to play with Appple-1 software, look for a Briel Replica-1. That is well within your budget.

Cheers,
Corey

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Posts: 2413
Re: Apple 1: What's the cheapest cost to get it to ...

Hello Corey,

as this member was hunting for lowest price, i didn´t mention how high
cost have been spent by some members ..... i coudn´t even mention that,
because if searching also for correct datecodes and special parts like the
spectrol or the ceramic cpu some would have spent more than 5000 Dollars....

if he for example would try to get the correct resistors he´d recognize what
i was explaining.... i agree with you.... if he really just hunts for the "cheap track"
he seems to be waiting at the wrong station platform and better should change
to the Briel solution....

hope you spent nice Xmas holidays and have a nice switchover at New Years Eve and
that all members of AF share same experience.....
speedyG

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In early days I had a lot of money but no time - now I have no money but a lot of time....
the second part includes less friends but a lot more joy on life....

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Joined: Dec 20 2014
Posts: 135
Re: Apple 1: What's the cheapest cost to get it to ...

Hello snazzify, and welcome to the forum!

I'd like to chime in a little here. I want to encourage you to pursue this, if you are interested in this field.

For me, I held a soldering iron for the very first time only 5 years ago with mainly a background in programming in the past, and I've had a blast ever since. I just completed my Mimeo 1 with the help of many people here, and it's working well and I'm learning more about it every day as I use it.

If this is your first ever soldering project, I think the Mimeo is an ambitious one. Not only because of the parts, but also the general electrical knowledge that is useful to have. There are tons of kits out there for electronics projects that I would probably start first, just to get your feet wet. How fast you accelerate through this is up to how much time you're willing to devote to learning. The kits are nice, because everything's included, and you just need to follow the instructions and solder away.

I would say, pick something you like and go with it. I really like LED projects and flashing lights, so one of my very early projects was an 8x8x8 LED cube that I got plans for from www.instructables.com, which was a blast. Looking back, this was a bit ambitious for my level of experience at that time, but really fun, and I learned a lot. And it involved lots of chips, lots of chip sockets, and lots of plugs, headers, and, of course, LEDs!

You will also learn how to handle electronics, since a simple mistake could destroy what you're working on, and it's far better to destroy a $10 kit than a $1000 Apple 1 replica!

Anyway, I hope this helps. Good luck!

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Joined: Jan 4 2015
Posts: 68
Re: Apple 1: What's the cheapest cost to get it to ...

Sherlock wrote:

Hello snazzify, and welcome to the forum!

I'd like to chime in a little here. I want to encourage you to pursue this, if you are interested in this field.

For me, I held a soldering iron for the very first time only 5 years ago with mainly a background in programming in the past, and I've had a blast ever since. I just completed my Mimeo 1 with the help of many people here, and it's working well and I'm learning more about it every day as I use it.

If this is your first ever soldering project, I think the Mimeo is an ambitious one. Not only because of the parts, but also the general electrical knowledge that is useful to have. There are tons of kits out there for electronics projects that I would probably start first, just to get your feet wet. How fast you accelerate through this is up to how much time you're willing to devote to learning. The kits are nice, because everything's included, and you just need to follow the instructions and solder away.

I would say, pick something you like and go with it. I really like LED projects and flashing lights, so one of my very early projects was an 8x8x8 LED cube that I got plans for from www.instructables.com, which was a blast. Looking back, this was a bit ambitious for my level of experience at that time, but really fun, and I learned a lot. And it involved lots of chips, lots of chip sockets, and lots of plugs, headers, and, of course, LEDs!

You will also learn how to handle electronics, since a simple mistake could destroy what you're working on, and it's far better to destroy a $10 kit than a $1000 Apple 1 replica!

Anyway, I hope this helps. Good luck!

Thank you!

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Joined: Jun 5 2008
Posts: 382
Re: Apple 1: What's the cheapest cost to get it to ...

My assumption is that if you are looking for a "bargain" solution, you will not be concerned with date code correct parts. There is whole different level of effort involved in that process.

I haven't been doing any Apple 1 parts buying for quite some time, but I expect that you might be able to do somewhat better then the Unicorn cost. However, keep in mind that you'll spend a surprising amount on shipping by using a variety of suppliers and in the past, I found that some parts are rather hard to find at fair prices. The ones that come to mind, are all the Signetics 25xx parts, the 4096 DRAM, the 6820, the DS0025C and the large Blue Sprague capacitors. Before deciding to do your own thing, see if you can find sources for these parts. There are workable substitutes for some of these parts, like a 6821 for the 6820, 4027 for 4096 and other similar value caps could be used in place of the Blue Sprague caps. I know one person built his Mimeo successfully by using 74LSXX parts, which should also save a little bit of money.

regards,
Mike Willegal

If you find you have had fun building an Apple 1 reproduction, and are looking for a new, more difficult challenge, try building a SCELBI.