Apple II Replica

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Joined: Apr 11 2012
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With all the brilliant Apple I replicas there are I got wondering, how possible would an Apple ][ replica be? If we could get permission from Apple (rather then make an illegal clone like others did back in the day) who would be interested in such a hacking project? I know that it would be hard, no doubt about that! But surely something like this would be fun for those interested in an Apple ][ clone and that if people wanted it they would work for it? What do you guys here think?

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Joined: Oct 9 2011
Posts: 669
Re: Apple II Replica

The cost to create a complete Apple II replica (forgetting the legals) would be prohibitive. When you can buy a II plus for peanuts compared to the individual parts to build one it doesn't make sense. Mike Willegal created in the past an Apple II rev 0 reproduction board to restore his original Apple II and he made it available, but that is about the furthest I think you'll see. The main differences between early II plus and later II computers were the ROMs as they even shared the biggest problem with creating a clone, the raised power indicator keyboard. The cost to "tool" and make the keyboard with raised power indicator is in the thousands. maybe with a 3d printer it could be done but I'm not sure.

Later II plus machines have one of various different keyboards that wouldn't be useful and the power supplies are a different color so that would also need to be recreated. Reproduction II badges do show up periodically on eBay so we know that can be done.

So in the end not worth it.

Cheers,
Corey

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Re: Apple II Replica

FPGA implementations seem a nice compromise between PC-based emulators versus the expense/complexity of reconstructing the hardware. You still get a dedicated Apple II of a sort which can be made somewhat close in external appearance to at least a II clone (a 10-footer? thanks for that term, Corey), maybe even using the case and keyboard from a dead II or clone.
Guess it all depends on whether you're willing to accept that it's still emulation.

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Joined: Oct 9 2011
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Re: Apple II Replica

That is the exact route that Vince Briel took with his Altair Micro. It's an Altair on a single microcontroller. He did a mini case instead of a full case but people including myself love their Altair Micro's.

Cheers,
Corey

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Joined: Jun 5 2008
Posts: 248
Re: Apple II Replica

I did a reproduction rev 0 motherboard PCB.

http://www.willegal.net/appleii/appleii-recreation.htm

I sold 15 kits and 1 bare PCB and made a few hundred bucks over a period of a couple of years. Authentic production Apple IIs are just too plentiful to make this a viable enterprise.

That said, I'll probably make another batch of PCBs in the future for the few people that like making vintage computer kits, missed out on the first run and are willing to find their own parts.

Regards,
Mike Willegal

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Re: Apple II Replica

Mike WIllegal wrote:

That said, I'll probably make another batch of PCBs in the future for the few people that like making vintage computer kits, missed out on the first run and are willing to find their own parts.

I'll say, I'm definitely interested in getting one. It's just the pricing that causes me to have hesitation.

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Re: Apple II Replica

Dog Cow wrote:
Mike WIllegal wrote:

That said, I'll probably make another batch of PCBs in the future for the few people that like making vintage computer kits, missed out on the first run and are willing to find their own parts.

I'll say, I'm definitely interested in getting one. It's just the pricing that causes me to have hesitation.

Seconded. (purely for educational purposes of course Wink )

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Re: Apple II Replica

swinsor wrote:
Dog Cow wrote:
Mike WIllegal wrote:

That said, I'll probably make another batch of PCBs in the future for the few people that like making vintage computer kits, missed out on the first run and are willing to find their own parts.

I'll say, I'm definitely interested in getting one. It's just the pricing that causes me to have hesitation.

Seconded. (purely for educational purposes of course Wink )

Of course. Wink

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