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#1 2015-01-11 01:00:57

unity
Member
Registered: 2015-01-09
Posts: 81

Clone motherboard question and other debates

Did apple every produce motherboards for clone makers. And if so, did they stamp "Apple Computer" on them? As far as I can tell, no. But it seems that clone information is starting to disappear from the web.

Last edited by unity (2015-01-12 01:04:57)

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#2 2015-01-11 04:38:17

jt
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From: Bermuda Triangle, NC USA
Registered: 2014-05-21
Posts: 1,404

Re: Clone motherboard question and other debates

AFAIK, no. The first go-round in the x100 generation led to the Radius 81/110 and others based on Apple's Reference Design based upon that series. Radius dispensed that that Dumb@$$ Video Connector Apple came up with in favor a the traditional DA-19 Mac Video Port. Later clones dispensed with Apple's notion that they'd stick to low cost alternatives. As clones outstripped Apple's Flagship Products, something needed to be done. The Steve cut the legs out from under every Clone Licensee  .  .  .

.  .  .  but the SOB still had to license Multiple Processor Technology back from one of the Clone Vendors (Daystar?)  .  .  .

.  .  .  paybacks is hell! big_smile

Last edited by jt (2015-01-11 04:39:20)

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#3 2015-01-11 05:22:41

ClassicHasClass
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From: Electron Alley
Registered: 2014-05-26
Posts: 1,089
Website

Re: Clone motherboard question and other debates

There's also the Tanzania boards, but those were reference boards, not produced by Apple for licensees. It was a pretty common foundation implementation for clone Macs. Apple even used the Tanzania themselves in the 4400, though not the T2.

http://lowendmac.com/tech/tanz.html

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#4 2015-01-11 07:24:02

mcdermd
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From: Corvallis, OR
Registered: 2014-05-12
Posts: 960
Website

Re: Clone motherboard question and other debates

With all due respect, cutting the clone makers loose was the best thing for Apple, if not the best thing for the current consumer at the time. I honestly don't think Apple could have survived as a software company then. Letting clone makers eat more and more hardware profit wouldn't pay the bills at Apple.

It's a hard coin toss. The clone makers were both the best and worst things for the Mac platform at the time.

That 4400 is still an elusive find for me. I'd like one simply because it was Apple's shot at making a clone.


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#5 2015-01-11 14:29:21

unity
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Registered: 2015-01-09
Posts: 81

Re: Clone motherboard question and other debates

I agree on the clones. They provided a swift kick where Apple needed it. A BIG wake up call. At the same time, they did need to go for Apple's sake. Its the consumer that got shafted.

Well thanks for the info. Next week I will post about something when it gets here and you will see why I asked. Thinking it must be a proto/pre-production item.

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#6 2015-01-11 18:33:26

ClassicHasClass
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From: Electron Alley
Registered: 2014-05-26
Posts: 1,089
Website

Re: Clone motherboard question and other debates

My first brush with the clones was when I was working in a biochem lab and my grad student supervisor ordered his brand new Power Computing box. Nice machine.

I have an original infamous Sluggo "Let's Kick Intel's Ass" poster in my server room for their 225MHz beast, complete with the original swag tube. Those posters didn't last long due to threatened legal action, but I loved the aggro snark. As a result, it's been an easter egg in every version of TenFourFox and the original version of Classilla. See if you can find it. smile

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#7 2015-01-11 19:40:55

jt
Member
From: Bermuda Triangle, NC USA
Registered: 2014-05-21
Posts: 1,404

Re: Clone motherboard question and other debates

mcdermd wrote:

With all due respect, cutting the clone makers loose was the best thing for Apple, if not the best thing for the current consumer at the time. I honestly don't think Apple could have survived as a software company then. Letting clone makers eat more and more hardware profit wouldn't pay the bills at Apple.

Absolute agreement from this end, something definitely had to be done and that was the right move in hindsight.Though "cutting loose" fails to be adequately  descriptive for what happened from my viewpoint.  tongue

It's a hard coin toss. The clone makers were both the best and worst things for the Mac platform at the time.

Apple had slipped Middleweight to Lightweight contender status at best. The clones helped with Market Share and re-established R&D of new technologies as a prime focus for the reborn Apple.

To give credit where it's due: The Steve had learned much from blunders past. Knowing NeXT could not have long survived its reduction that software only role, he didn't make that mistake when returning to Apple. NeXT was a miserable failure as a Boutique Hardware supplier to Academia and such against the dedicated workstation hardware vendors.

Having arranged to have Apple bail him out JIT, he brought with him the software and development "oarsmen" to the dead in the water Life Raft that was Apple. While Apple would probably(?) have survived due to the fairly immanent release of the iMac, The Steve helped sculpt it for a stylish (albeit in a remarkably fugly color tongue ) release for a burgeoning market segment. With FruitLooping, he managed to fix much that went lacking in the first year of his second coming.

There is much to be said of Color and Style in terms of the rebirth of Apple in the iFrastructure that made it the world's highest valued company(still?) and something like the 6th most beloved Trademark in America a year or so ago.

Back on topic: Clones, history and collecting of, transformed almost immediately into obsessions for myself and I'll wager, MANY involved in this hobby. wink

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#8 2015-01-11 20:42:47

jt
Member
From: Bermuda Triangle, NC USA
Registered: 2014-05-21
Posts: 1,404

Re: Clone motherboard question and other debates

unity wrote:

I agree on the clones. They provided a swift kick where Apple needed it. A BIG wake up call. At the same time, they did need to go for Apple's sake. Its the consumer that got shafted.

Make that re-shafted!   Scully's(?) BigBump of the first model year's sticker price of the Mac planted that shaft hard and deep as the sarissa of the Macedonian Phalanx ranks of Macs that followed right up to the Clone Era. I gladly paid the MacTax, albeit for used or refurb models in all but four instances. I may buy one NIB again some day!

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#9 2016-09-07 04:12:44

Elfen
Member
From: NYC, NY
Registered: 2015-07-07
Posts: 20

Re: Clone motherboard question and other debates

Necromancy Thread Revival...

The Mac Clones were interesting and I wish they were still around as they did drive the price of Mac down for a while.

All I can add was what happened with the Apple II Clones (The Orange, PineApple, etc... and later the Laser128). Early on Steve Jobs was angered to his limits when the Chinese and Japanese Compute Makers were cloning their Apple IIs. But in taking them to court, they lost their case to them. (Similar to what happened to IBM and the 8088/8086 Clonemakers in the early 80s with reverse engineering of their BIOS.) They did managed to take on V-Tec and sue them for copyright infringement on their Laser 128 and WIN! The Laser 128 was too similar to the IIc in many regards, when it was found that the Laser 128 used a cloned MMU for accessing more than 64K on a 6502, the code matched that of the IIc's and they won case for the code, but not the cloned chip. V-Tec swears that they did not made the chip but bought it from somebody else. Ha!

But as for the rest of the Clone Market, it opened up some weird peripherals. One of them was the Rana (Spanish for Frog) System's 4 Disk Drive Controller card. It was a beautiful piece of art - 4 drives on an Apple (clone) on a single card! It just was not 100% on some software with protection schemes, mostly games. Another was a Dual/Multi Port Serial Card I seen floating around - 2 or more serial ports on 1 card! But that required a special driver to use. There was a couple of Apple BBS software that was made for these multi-port cards. Ah... the days of 300 baud! Then again, I was a Commodore Boy back then! Though there was Z80 Cards for CP\M, somebody made a 68K card for the Apple II, which many thought one could run Mac Software on their Macs, but it was for CP\M-68K!

EDIT: LOL! Found this - Information and pics of a couple 68K Boards for the Apple II!
http://www.vcfed.org/forum/showthread.p … I-68K-card

Last edited by Elfen (2016-09-07 04:18:46)

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#10 2016-09-07 23:04:50

Eudimorphodon
Member
Registered: 2014-09-02
Posts: 525

Re: Clone motherboard question and other debates

Elfen wrote:

They did managed to take on V-Tec and sue them for copyright infringement on their Laser 128 and WIN! The Laser 128 was too similar to the IIc in many regards, when it was found that the Laser 128 used a cloned MMU for accessing more than 64K on a 6502, the code matched that of the IIc's and they won case for the code, but not the cloned chip. V-Tec swears that they did not made the chip but bought it from somebody else. Ha!

I'm pretty sure you've got your clone manufacturers confused. It was Apple's lawsuit against Franklin Computer that Apple not only won but established the precedent that software embedded in a ROM chip and other "machine-readable" forms was still covered by copyright. (Franklin's argument was that once the code is burned into a ROM it becomes an "electrical part" and therefore is no longer a "written work". They weren't just pulling this idea out of their butts, either; their legal theory was based on some old decisions regarding the copyright-ability of, for instance, rolls for player pianos, in which judges ruled that it was legal to copy them because they weren't designed to be read by humans.) vTec actually went to great lengths to reverse-engineer the Apple ROM and license an Applesoft-compatible dialect of BASIC directly from Microsoft, so the only grounds Apple had to sue them on (which they did, and lost) was on trade dress/trademark concerns.

So, really, you have it pretty much perfectly backwards because the Laser 128 was (with a couple other half-exceptions) the *only* "legal" Apple II clone. Almost every other II clone manufacturer did just what Franklin did, IE, bit-for-bit copy Apple's binaries with just the occasional search-and-replace to change the name displayed on a banner. Apple just sued Franklin because it was a US company that actually had to respond to it vs. the shady Taiwanese and Korean electronics puppy-mills that turned out most of the really generic clones.

Last edited by Eudimorphodon (2016-09-07 23:05:54)


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