New poster: Any way to test an original Apple II without a monitor or software!

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New poster: Any way to test an original Apple II without a monitor or software!

Dear friends,

I am considering buying an Apple II which has a serial number in the 5000s and was last used in the 90s.
When switched on the machine beeps but there is no monitor or software present to test further.

Is there any way of testing the basic (pun intended!) functions of the machine through some keyboard commands (for e.g. a command that produces a few beeps) without using a monitor and without attaching the disks?

I just want to avoid buying a expensive doorstopper. Any suggestions will be helpful.
Exact type written commands and sequence of steps from switching the computer on would be most helpful as I will relay this to the seller who is not a computer expert (but is basically literate & helpful)

Thank you.

Arun

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An additional piece of inform

An additional piece of information:

On this machine when the reset button is pressed and released, there is a "beep" sound.

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Re: An additional piece of inform

On this machine when the reset button is pressed and released, there is a "beep" sound.

It sounds happy and healthy, actually. The keyboard will probably have one or two or a few stuck keys. The early ones were particularly troublesome. But you won't be able to figure that out without a monitor attached.

Are you sure you don't have a TV with a video-in connector?

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Will ask the seller...

Will ask the seller...

My father (PC man) claims that apart from electronics designed for space travel, it is impossible for a capacitor in a consumer electronics device to be functional after 30 years... he claims this component will invariably "dry out".

I (Apple man to the core) would be delighted to prove him wrong. Wink

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Your father is wise in the wa

Your father is wise in the ways of capacitors. They benefit from use vs. disuse over time. Fortunately, they tend to fail in spectacular ways, and are easy to spot (and smell!) for repair.

The fact that the Apple beeps on startup and on reset is promising on several fronts. A lot of systems (CPU, memory, reset line) are up and running for sure.

I have several boards from that vintage and later. I have had to repair several of them, but most of the problems I seem to come across are toasted transistors. Fortunately, just about all parts for these machines are still readily available. Things start to get a little more dicey by the time you drift into the IIe era; but prior to that, they're easy to fix (and, in my experience, need fixing from time to time).

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Unfortunately the seller has

Unfortunately the seller has only an integrated DVD-TV with no video input. Do you have another suggestion on how the seller could test the keyboard/other features?

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Mash some keys, hit return.

Mash some keys, hit return. If it's an invalid command (highly likely) it'll beep after hitting return. To be safe, try Q, I, J, K, P by themselves - several keys by themselves are valid from the monitor (A-F, I, L, N, etc.) He doesn't have a way to know if it'll boot into the monitor, Applesoft, or Integer BASIC. (Looks like it might be Applesoft, given all the ROM slots are filled.)

That's the best he's going to be able to do.

Now, what if I outbid you? Wink

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The seller tried the above te

The seller tried the above test - there was no beep Sad

Does this mean all Q, I, J, K, P keys are all KAPUT???
This is worrying and unfortunate as the Apple in question is a 1977 rev 0

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This is what I asked the sell

This is what I asked the seller to do:

Can you try the following test for the keyboard, with the computer powered on: Angel hit the Q key, then press return - does it beep? Repeat the above with I, J, K and P (all by themselves, followed by return) - does it beep for all the above keys when you hit return? (b) now try "mashing" some random key and hit return. If it's an invalid command (highly likely) it'll beep after hitting return. (c) you can repeat the single key test followed by return for all the remaining keys. It should beep in all cases. However if you boot into the "monitor" (as opposed to Integer BASIC or Applesoft Basic) then A-F, I, L, N are all valid commands and would not result in a beep

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This is the sellers response:

This is the sellers response:

Hi! I've just done the above operations and did not produce any beeps

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The machine in question is

The machine in question is

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&rd=1&item=200206722122&ssPageName=STRK:MEBI:IT&ih=010

Apple II original from 1977
Rev 0
golden chips
toggle switch
silver power supp
serial number in the 5000s
raised power key

BUT BUT BUT
Is the keyboard a lemon if it does not beep with any key (except RESET)??
Or were my instructions to the seller incomplete...do you do the keyboard test with the power on only or do you have to hit reset before the keyboard test??

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Now, we know something is wro

Now, we know something is wrong. Might be RAM, might be ROM, might be the keyboard. Without a monitor, you'll have a hard time knowing what. But it's not unusual for these machines to need TLC. Re-seating all the chips (just mushing down on them all, each in turn) will likely be beneficial.

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Thanks David - will try that.

Thanks David - will try that....
it's strange how ALL the keys are not working!
Do you have to power on AND RESET the keyboard prior to the test??

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It depends, a little. If the

It depends, a little. If the ROMs were never upgraded, they will power up in the Machine Language Monitor (the * prompt) and will need a Ctrl-B to get into (Integer) BASIC. If the ROMs were upgraded to Applesoft, or if there is an autostart ROM in there via a language card or the ROM board, then it'll start into BASIC directly. But again... you really don't know much of that given the combination of unsophisticated seller and lack of a monitor to really see what's happening!

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Seller told me "there are 5 r

Seller told me "there are 5 rom slots F0 to D0, all are filled out by chips"... perhaps he could not see the F8 ROM set because it was hidden by the language card...have heard of old Apple's having 4 ROMS and new ones 6, but never 5

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The plot thickens... as su

The plot thickens...

as suggested the seller reseated all the chips and connected to a TV monitor.
hitting random keys and pressing return seems to produce a beep and displays ?SYNTAX ERROR !

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The seller now has access to

The seller now has access to a monitor! Although he has no software.
I have asked him to check the response on every key on the key...still awaiting a response

What commands can he use to test the machine's doing OK?

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When powered up the monitor s

When powered up the monitor said Apple ][. Most keys worked,G and L were not working but seller did not try them repeatedly some were harder to press and some double triggered.

Is this a fixable problem? What "surgery" needs to be done?

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Yep, standard operating proce

Yep, standard operating procedure for keyboards of this vintage. Disassembly, contact cleaner, working each key up and down works wonders.

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Re: New poster: Any way to test an original Apple II without a m

So - after all the help on all the various fora - did you win it?

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shot down by a sniper. 10 buc

shot down by a sniper at $910. I was 10 bucks short and 3 sec late...
Those two stuck keys, untested other stuff, and a family who thought I was crazy to get into this vintage stuff etc etc etc kept niggling my mind and I was never able to bid with full gusto...in the end the hesitation cost me. This one was special. 1977. rev 0.

Completely gutted - that Apple was mine and would have got a good home Sad

Great site and members here anyway...full of 100% practical tips.
Pity I won't be using it though...

DAMMITTT
I blame my wife

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Leave the rev0's to the colle

Leave the rev0's to the collectors. If you want to _use_ one, start with a Platinum IIe. Solid little beasties, compatible with all software short of the IIgs, and they don't need the same TLC the older machines based entirely on discrete components do.

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I am in the same situation wi

I am in the same situation with another seller of an original Apple II without monitor cable.
All keys beep, except the E, R, D and C and all of the number keys also do not beep when followed by return.

Does this mean the number keys are KAPUT? I have asked the seller to try a combination of
EE, ER, EC etc. Also asked to try "A0", "A2". A3" etc

Please let me know if there is another test we should run

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I am in the same situation wi

I am in the same situation with another seller of an original Apple II without monitor cable.
All keys beep, except the E, R, D and C and all of the number keys also do not beep when followed by return.

Does this mean the number keys are KAPUT? I have asked the seller to try a combination of
EE, ER, EC etc. Also asked to try "A0", "A2". A3" etc

Please let me know if there is another test we should run

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An update: ED beeps, ER be

An update:

ED beeps, ER beeps, RR beeps, RD beeps, DD beeps, DC beeps, RC beeps, CR beeps, CD beeps, A 0-9 all beep. It does not beep with EE, EC, RC, CE, CC.

Does this mean the number keys are working?

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A further update: No beep

A further update:

No beep on "EEE", "CCC", E0 through E9 and C0 through C9

Does this mean the C and E keys are dead?

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