Seems like another Apple 1 replica (Newton 1?) for sales

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Joined: Dec 25 2011
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All,

Someone has just sent me this Youtube link.. It seems like there will be another Apple 1 replica (the name called "Newton 1"?) for sales and it may be sold in fully assembled and tested form. The BASIC loading and Startrek part are quite bored but the guy has used the same music used in the release of Mac 128K back in 1984. He said he made the same box used in the one seen in Christie's auction. Quite excited to see this though, especially my homebrew still does not work, I may contact this guy.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1G6Mh63_8gM

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tranter's picture
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Joined: Feb 1 2012
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Re: Seems like another Apple 1 replica (Newton 1?) for sales

It's not clear from the video if this is going to be sold as a product. Could it be a Mimeo 1?

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Joined: Dec 25 2011
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Re: Seems like another Apple 1 replica (Newton 1?) for sales

It is not Mimeo 1, note the solder mask color (not as glossy as Mimeo) and the components (e.g. A14F diode in the power supply, the original yellow potentiometer).

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Re: Seems like another Apple 1 replica (Newton 1?) for sales

I emailed Mike Newton who posted the video clip to see if he is going to sell the replicas. He sent me below link of photos and said he would also put a couple sets for sales in Ebay, though he can also close the deal off Ebay. He also told he does not have deep pocket for real thing and at that time he could not find any set of Obtronix or Mimeo kit, then he decided to do what Woz and Jobs did 36 years ago by doing it from scratches - doing the gerber, outsourcing circuit board manufacturing, sourcing the globe for components, replicating the original box and making fully assembled and tested Apple 1 replicas. Now he has his own "Apple 1 with original box" and he would like to share the delight to other hobbyists.

The very first batch are all hand-soldered and tested by himself and if he can collect more very hard to find component, he considers to run another small batch to replicate the NTI board (this first batch is pre-NTI replica) and run wave soldering. I have already ordered one set and asked to print my name and address on the shipping label and reserved one NTI set. Really excited to know mine is #001. Enjoy!

He can be reached at

https://plus.google.com/u/1/photos/109866693740649982432/albums

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Joined: Jul 14 2012
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Re: Seems like another Apple 1 replica (Newton 1?) for sales

Hi all, michael0623 has helped to advertise a bit and he went further by helping me to list one set of Newton 1 on Ebay. Just to let the world of vintage Apple hobbyists know that apart from Obtronix and Mimeo, there is one more Newton 1. I built one set for myself and use the remaining components to build a few more sets and hope to share the delight and excitement of having one completely packaged set of functional Apple 1. I think I earn something in the process, as I think at least I have experienced almost every task which Jobs had taken in deriving Woz's design into the first commercial success.

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=251109274976#ht_1260wt_1055

Enjoy!
Mike

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qubitz's picture
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Re: Seems like another Apple 1 replica (Newton 1?) for sales

Let me be the first to say I think that this is a straight rip-off of Mike Willegal's Mimeo. If that's the case, you should be very ashamed passing it off as your own.

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Re: Seems like another Apple 1 replica (Newton 1?) for sales

qubitz wrote:

Let me be the first to say I think that this is a straight rip-off of Mike Willegal's Mimeo. If that's the case, you should be very ashamed passing it off as your own.

Would it not be fair to say any reasonably accurate Apple-1 clone is a straight "rip-off" of Steve Wozniak's Apple I? A bit hypocritical don't you think?

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Re: Seems like another Apple 1 replica (Newton 1?) for sales

I think the question on qubitz's mind has to do with when you overlay the images of the boards. His post and curiosity made me look. As an Apple-1 nut I have to look, hey maybe there is a new layout someone did. The Obtronix was layed out by an Apple-1 owner but it was what we call in the car world a ten footer. Looks perfect from 10 feet, but get close and you can see why it's not original. Mike Willegal "upped" the ante by creating a whole new layout that photo matched the Apple-1 using hi-resolution photos.

A however there are traces on be board that are obscured in all known photographs.

I checked a couple of "hidden" traces visible from the pics between the boards and they matched perfectly. Mike Willegal "guessed" on the hidden traces because they were under sockets or components on the original Apple-1. On the reproductions they all supply "open" frame sockets because original are unavailable so these traces are visiable on a "clone". Now this matching to the Mimeo could be coincidental for one trace or two, but for more than that even if there may only be one logical way for the path to go, but the exact curve and position of a trace under a socket that isn't known for the actual Apple-1 makes the "Newton-1" suspect.

FYI. Mike Willegal spent 100's of hours making the Mimeo pcb layout. Much more than Howard Canton who actually layed out of the board. Reproducing a vintage board by hand is worse than just laying it out, you are constantly tweaking the traces to follow a specific path. Today if you have access to scanning software and a bare board you can easily reproduce it. I don't think Mike Willegal was able to convince an Apple-1 owner to strip their board and have it scanned (like Grant Stockly did with his personal Altair for his kits). Mike Willegal had to do it the hard way, one trace at a time.

Is Mike Newton's a "copy" of the Mimeo layout? I don't know, but like the police who leave out "facts" from the press so that only they and the killer know, there are some questions regarding the "Newton-1" layout from the pictures I have seen.

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Re: Seems like another Apple 1 replica (Newton 1?) for sales

I think Corey accurately described my concern.

Of course all replicas are descendant of Steve Wozniak's original design and Howard Canton's layout and I have no problem with people copying that design, I'm actually in favor of it. What I do have a problem with is someone scanning a PCB that Mike spent hundreds of hours painstakingly laying out by hand and calling it their own. Just my opinion, but I think it's wrong. I'm not saying that is definitely what happened here, but it certainly seems like it to me.

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Re: Seems like another Apple 1 replica (Newton 1?) for sales

I foresee someone will raise the concern, but my explanation is simple:-
1) I don't have Mimeo bare board nor I have its scanned image. What I have is just scanned Obtronix image which someone shared with Mike W. when he invited for help some time ago; I use the Obtronix image for positioning the ICs, and without a reference, gerber job cannot be started; Schematics which are universally available is my sole reference to check the connection in the gerber software;
2) I am new to create PCB from scratch and gerber creation was started from Dec 2011 and completed in April 2012. The first PCB batch was screwed up by the fab. I found there are multiple open/short in my 1st gerber and the one you saw now is from the second PCB batch after the gerber is rectified;
3) I will say original Apple 1 is Da Vinci's Mona Lisa in Lourve, Obtronix, Mimeo and Newton are just new replicas of the originals. We are proud of our works and partly to identify them as replicas, we named our project as Obtronix, Mimeo and Newton. We cannot say, if both Mimeo and Newton takes original Apple 1 as reference for trace layout, Newton is a copycat of Mimeo.

Now, the comparison....
https://plus.google.com/u/0/photos/101194095119006802770/albums/5766868146433246001

Original, Mimeo (colored gerber from Mike's website, red and green are trace, black is marking) and Newton (black and white), pls note below differences, to mention just a few:
1) At C15 below 74157, there are copper arrow below the three 1N914s in the original (appear as light green) and Newton;
2) Similarly, under the four 1N4001s and four MR500, there are copper arrow below in the original (light green) and Newton;
3) The way "0" drawn for "X0" and "W0", there is a cross in the original and Newton
4) The trace path under the DRAM (ICs), Newton uses a gentle slope vs Mimeo's stepped slope
5) Soldermask of the original and Newton is matt green vs Mimeo's glossy surface

I think one of the reason why Newton is confused is that I did not log my replicating process in a opened way like Mike W and Newton comes out all in a sudden. Making the PCB from scratch is relatively easy task so long one have time and patience, but sourcing for all the components, dealing with suppliers, replicating the packages and financing the project are real challenges to me. Without going thru all these, we won't know why Steve Jobs and Woz and other great entrepreneurs are so respected now.

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Re: Seems like another Apple 1 replica (Newton 1?) for sales

Mike, thank you for sharing information on the differences.

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Re: Seems like another Apple 1 replica (Newton 1?) for sales

You are welcome, Qubitz.
I should have stated the difference before I announced the sales. Mimeo and Newton look like quite the same as we chose to use the originals as reference for trace layout. What I did is just to print out the Mona Lisa and use my feeling to round the traces from sharp angle - my software only have 45 degree, 60 degree and 90 degree trace bending angle. But even though it seems stupid and time consuming, I will say, gerber is just 20% of the job and others I mentioned in my explanation are the 80%. Sourcing for components is particularly painful for me as I now locate Hong Kong and I have to largely rely on overseas sources for IC components and the hard to find at significant transportation cost. If I have copied Mimeo, I believe I would not spend the time and money on the 80% job and just made those few differences I showed and still risk being suspected. If you are to "copy", why would you choose to copy a replica and not the original? Now, I hope the world will know Newton is the third pre-NTI Apple 1 cosmetic replica, after Obtronix and Mimeo, with a different PCB presentation and hope it will receive the same appreciation given to Obtronix and Mimeo.

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Re: Seems like another Apple 1 replica (Newton 1?) for sales

Mike,

I think everyone's concern as you state is that the "Newton-1" came out of nowhere to the public here. When Mike Willegal was putting the Mimeo together, he was online asking tons of questions about components and traces and stuff to actual Apple-1 owners since much of the exsiting photos were fuzzy or had hidden areas. So I guess it was expected that people would be concerned.

If you would have done your NTI board first, I think it would have been a little less shocking as the NTI board is slightly different and no one has done one of those yet.

Cheers,
Corey

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Re: Seems like another Apple 1 replica (Newton 1?) for sales

Mike Newton/Mike Ng,

Please remove the images (of the preproduction Mimeo image) that you borrowed from my website and reused without permission from your photo album.

Enough said,

Regards,
Mike Willegal

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Re: Seems like another Apple 1 replica (Newton 1?) for sales

Sorry Mike, no intention to offend in any way. Just wanted to defend that I am not copying Mimeo PCBs and thought a comparison could explain and thus used Mimeo image for the first time. I have asked Michael to remove the photo and remove part of the EBay description pointing out the differences. Corey inspired me a good idea, I am considering to modify the PCB gerber to NTI after I consume the remaining pre-NTI bare boards. I am aware of and always appreciate your achievement. Started in late Dec 2011 when there was no way to have one Mimeo kit and thought it would be nice to make one replica for myself.

That's all I need to say in this topic. Thanks all for patience and good points.

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Newton-Computer: Newton 1, Newton NTI