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ASR-10 in 2019
Old 3rd September 2019
  #1
ASR-10 in 2019

A bit of a broad topic I’ll grant you, but since I’m a new member of the ASR-10 congregation, I’ve had a few questions about the best way to use these samplers in 2019.

The first thing I wondered about was storage. For years I’ve been aware that ZIP disks via SCSI have been the standard. I notice these days though, there are USB or SD-based floppy drive emulators available, some which even fit the floppy-drive slot, looking like a neat solution. Would this be a good option in 2019, or does SCSI still offer features that make it superior?

I also wondered about OS and BIOS versions. I’ve rarely seen this discussed, but I know that when they were still in production, the units could be upgraded to newer BIOS versions by replacing two EPROM chips on the board. And the OS version(s) your ASR-10 can run depend on the BIOS. Mine has BIOS v1, meaning I can’t use the later OS’s. Has anyone had experiences upgrading the BIOS, would you recommend it?

Lastly, since mine is an early model, I’ve been thinking about longevity. Has anyone had their ASR-10’s re-capped? If so, what prompted you, and how did it go?

Well, there we are, that’s kind of a grab-bag of questions, but any advice would be much appreciated. Also please feel free to add questions below, more experienced members may be able to help. Thanks in advance.
Old 4th September 2019
  #2
Gear Head
 

Man I’m bumping the purple scsi drive like a real one.

No problems in here in 2019.

The usb alternatives seem like a headache man

It’s an old machine, I just give it what it wants
Old 4th September 2019
  #3
PHG
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PHG's Avatar
I don't like any of the floppy drive emulators I have found, since as far as I can tell, they all save files in their own unique format. I would only get one if I knew for sure that it saved in the Ensoniq format just like a floppy disk.

Also, most of the floppy drive emulators look like they don't fit perfectly, and would leave a gap for dust to get inside the case.

What I decided to do is just leave my original floppy drive in place, since it still works fine. I use an external SCSI2SD v5, just plugged in the same way you would attach a zip drive. It's great so far.

I keep mine up on a nice keyboard stand. I took off the memory cover, and put a USB powered computer fan there. It sucks hot air out of the case, and blows it down to the ground. It's not too loud. Just have to remember to plug it in every time I used it. Keeps it icy cold.

Based on the paint job and serial number, I think mine is one of the earliest releases. But the previous owner must have upgraded the BIOs chips at some point, probably while it was under warranty. I remember checking the number on it when I opened it, and it was the latest version. It works great with the last OS version 3.53.

I have not really considered getting it recapped. It's in such good condition, I'm afraid to leave it at a shop and risk it getting scratched up. I'd probably have to be there while they did it. Maybe I will learn how to do it on my own eventually, or just completely swap out the mainboard if it ever fails.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #4
Gear Addict
 

https://www.gearslutz.com/board/elec...ic-production/

I’d ask in there.

I used scsi still in my ASRX until about 2008 when I sold it. I’d like a 10 one day.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #5
Lives for gear
 
Lando Calrissian's Avatar
My ASR-10 floppy drive died today and I'm in the same boat. Not sure if I should simply replace it with another floppy or try an emulator. I'm trying to spend as little as possible on this thing.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #6
Gear Head
 

if your ASR has SCSI then SCSI2SD seems to be the way to go imo or just stick with good old Zip disks.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #7
Lives for gear
I would recommend contacting this guy: http://thesoniq.com/index.html He used to work for Ensoniq and when they shut down he bought all of their parts inventory and set up shop as the only official Ensoniq service center. He knows EVERYTHING. I met him once when I lived near there and drove my keyboard to him for a repair. I have also shipped a keyboard to him from the east coast - even with the shipping it was worth it. He can replace any part or board, upgrade BIOS, anything and everything. His services charges are very reasonable too.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #8
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Lando Calrissian's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by meez61 View Post
if your ASR has SCSI then SCSI2SD seems to be the way to go imo or just stick with good old Zip disks.
It does. Can I boot off of SCSI?
Old 4 weeks ago
  #9
PHG
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PHG's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lando Calrissian View Post
It does. Can I boot off of SCSI?
If you put the operating system on the SCSI storage, you will be able to boot from it.

The only problem is that it is necessary to boot from floppy in order to format any SCSI storage. If you boot from the SCSI, the ASR-10 will not give the option to format SCSI storage.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #10
Gear Head
 

Thats a good point about formatting SCSI storage but along as you have a working floppy drive and os disk you should be fine? I don't actually have a SCSI2SD here but it seemed like the best option when I was thinking of changing my storage medium, I tried floppy usb emulator but I couldn't stand how long it took saving and loading after being used to Zip disks but if I didn't have the SCSI option I would still go with that.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #11
PHG
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PHG's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by meez61 View Post
Thats a good point about formatting SCSI storage but along as you have a working floppy drive and os disk you should be fine?
Yes. Any time you want to format a new SD card for SCSI, you would need to boot from an OS disk in a floppy drive somehow. Or boot from the OS on a floppy emulator.
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