New Commodore VIC-20 Build

In a recent episode of [The Retro Shack], a new Commodore VIC-20 is built, using a ‘Vicky Twenty’ replacement PCB by [Bob’s Bits] as the base and as many new components as could be found. The occasion for this was that a viewer had sent in a VIC-20 that turned out to be broken, so in order to diagnose it, building a new one with known working parts seemed incredibly useful.

Advantages of the reproduction PCB are a number of board-level fixes that negate the need for certain bodge wires, while also having footprints for a wider range of round DIN connectors. The non-proprietary ICs were obtained along with other standard parts from a retro computing store, while the proprietary Commodore components were scrounged up from your friendly used component selling sites.

The result is what from the outside looks like a genuine VIC-20, and which should prove to be very useful in diagnosing the broken VIC-20 system in the future, as well as presumably to play some games on.

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30 Years Later TED Finds His Voice: A Commodore Story Part I

MOS SID Chip Sound Interface Device

In the before-time (I’m talking about the 1980’s here), when home computers were considered to be consumer items, there was the Commodore C64. The C64 derived its vast array of superpowers from two Integrated Circuits (IC) named VIC and SID standing for Video Interface Chip and Sound Interface Device. Chip names were part of our culture back them, from VIC up to Fat AGNES in the end.

We spoke about VIC and SID as if they were people or distant relatives, sometimes cantankerous or prone to sudden outburst, but there was always an underlying respect for the chips and the engineers who made them. VIC and SID together made one of the world’s best video and sound experiences; movement and noise, musical notes and aliens.

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