Question Which CPU was your very first one?

Page 11 - Seeking answers? Join the Tom's Hardware community: where nearly two million members share solutions and discuss the latest tech.

madmatt30

Titan
Ambassador
First home computer was a Texas Ti99/4a with a Texas Instruments TMS9900 cpu in the early 80s.

First Windows based Computer was Hewlett Packard with a pentium something or other., would have been early 90s.

First Cpu that I used in a home build (first ever home build for me) was an athlon x2 4000, would have been early 2000's and was a blinding processor for its time.
 
Reactions: Endre

Eximo

Titan
Ambassador
First home computer was a Texas Ti99/4a with a Texas Instruments TMS9900 cpu in the early 80s.

First Windows based Computer was Hewlett Packard with a pentium something or other., would have been early 90s.

First Cpu that I used in a home build (first ever home build for me) was an athlon x2 4000, would have been early 2000's and was a blinding processor for its time.
My dad bought the TI99/4a floor model when they were discontinuing them, pretty sure it was from Sears? Fully loaded with the game cartridges, joysticks (Atari 2600 compatible), voice synthesizer, expansion chassis/power supply/memory expansion/dual floppies, and the color monitor. And a cradle modem, though I don't think we used that for anything at the time.

Still have it, all of it still works as of last power on. Even survived Y2K like a champ, though the dates are messed up on anything you make today and we never bothered to roll back the clock. IBM had to have its clock reset to operate.
 
Reactions: madmatt30

Endre

Notable
Apr 30, 2019
613
100
1,090
13
yes, my computer was a South West Techinal Products 6800 instead of a bunch of toggle switchs like the computer in War games, It only had two buttons on/off and reset. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SWTPC . I had the audio tape backup system also. my first IO was a TTY with paper tape punch and reader. It was the fun old days, NO viruses, sometimes full source code, used assembly and a lot of wild projects, I remember one where you could add a chip from a calculator and it gave you a "math co-processor"
I’ve read a bit about the history of this company.
So, I suppose that you owned this computer in 1970’s, right?
 

Endre

Notable
Apr 30, 2019
613
100
1,090
13
First home computer was a Texas Ti99/4a with a Texas Instruments TMS9900 cpu in the early 80s.

First Windows based Computer was Hewlett Packard with a pentium something or other., would have been early 90s.

First Cpu that I used in a home build (first ever home build for me) was an athlon x2 4000, would have been early 2000's and was a blinding processor for its time.
So, the size of the memory on those machines was 16kB!
We’ve gone a long way from that time 😄

But I think that a working TI-99/4A could be sold for a good price nawadays as a retro PC.
 
Last edited:

coxbw

Distinguished
Jun 22, 2011
49
6
18,535
0
I’ve read a bit about the history of this company.
So, I suppose that you owned this computer in 1970’s, right?
yes in the 70s, if i told people then what I an running now, I would be laughed at and put into a padded cell, I sometimes wonder what computer would be in 20-30 years from now,have NO idea
 
Reactions: Endre

Eximo

Titan
Ambassador
yes in the 70s, if i told people then what I an running now, I would be laughed at and put into a padded cell, I sometimes wonder what computer would be in 20-30 years from now,have NO idea
A few possibilities:
Near future, true 3D CPUs, ie stacked logic layers. (Because they will hit the limit of FinFET style transistors soon enough, there is already a slight alternative, something to do with multiple gates, can't recall the name)
I know IBM made some prototypes a while back with built in liquid cooling/power delivery, current carrying fluids.

Longer term:
Diamond substrate in place of silicon
Possibly carbon nano-tube logic gates, maybe 2D materials

Quantum encryption will end up in there somewhere, though not sure if that will be some local or online thing. I've seen papers on both types, but the ones on each device rely a little too much on theoreticals. Though 2D materials might fit the bill, many new quantum phenomena have been recently discovered when doping single atom sheets of an element with other elements. Might be able to do room temperature quantum computing relatively soon.
 

Endre

Notable
Apr 30, 2019
613
100
1,090
13
yes in the 70s, if i told people then what I an running now, I would be laughed at and put into a padded cell, I sometimes wonder what computer would be in 20-30 years from now,have NO idea
Maybe in 20-30 years by now, they’ll invent desktop PCs that will only take a small corner of the desk, and the monitor will be a hologram.
128-bit systems with zillion gigabytes of RAM. 😂
 

Eximo

Titan
Ambassador
I still enjoy my Lenovo IdeaCentre 300 (aka Lenovo ThinkStick), though it is getting harder to find a use for it.

Just a little Celeron, 32GB of eMMC flash, USB and WiFi with an HDMI output. If it didn't need external power it would be quite the portable computer. Waiting on Intel to sponsor a follow up. NUCs are cool, but I want something truly pocketable.
 
Reactions: Endre

g-unit1111

Titan
Moderator
Been using PCs since the 386 / 486 days but my first computer that I actually owned was a Macintosh Performa 400 and believe me if I was the one buying it I would not have. Of course that was back when you could actually afford to buy a Mac, lol.
 
Reactions: Endre

Eximo

Titan
Ambassador
I picked up a Performa 630 from my high school when they were throwing it out in favor of some shiny new Windows XP boxes. Quite neat, had an S-Video input and some other oddities. Never really used it for anything but it was an interesting glimpse into that era of Apple. Prior I had only ever really used an Apple II E.

Oddly this was well after they shut down the student A/V / IT initiative (someone stole Pentium III by swapping in their personal Celeron), one of the teachers just approached us nerds and asked if we wanted to take the Macs before they were tossed. Literally carried it home (about 3 blocks), desktop, monitor and everything.
 
Reactions: Endre

Endre

Notable
Apr 30, 2019
613
100
1,090
13
I picked up a Performa 630 from my high school when they were throwing it out in favor of some shiny new Windows XP boxes. Quite neat, had an S-Video input and some other oddities. Never really used it for anything but it was an interesting glimpse into that era of Apple. Prior I had only ever really used an Apple II E.

Oddly this was well after they shut down the student A/V / IT initiative (someone stole Pentium III by swapping in their personal Celeron), one of the teachers just approached us nerds and asked if we wanted to take the Macs before they were tossed. Literally carried it home (about 3 blocks), desktop, monitor and everything.
“Someone stole Pentium lll...” 🤣

About the S-Video connection:
I had no idea it existed...

https://www.lifewire.com/s-video-definition-1082148
 

g-unit1111

Titan
Moderator
I picked up a Performa 630 from my high school when they were throwing it out in favor of some shiny new Windows XP boxes. Quite neat, had an S-Video input and some other oddities. Never really used it for anything but it was an interesting glimpse into that era of Apple. Prior I had only ever really used an Apple II E.

Oddly this was well after they shut down the student A/V / IT initiative (someone stole Pentium III by swapping in their personal Celeron), one of the teachers just approached us nerds and asked if we wanted to take the Macs before they were tossed. Literally carried it home (about 3 blocks), desktop, monitor and everything.
Oh yeah mine had an external SCSI drive with the CD-ROM caddy. I recently found that computer cleaning stuff out but alas it didn't work when I tried to turn it on. I did take it apart and take a look at the insides though. Some pretty interesting stuff.
 
Reactions: Endre

Eximo

Titan
Ambassador
I built a few Barton based systems around that time. One never did work, seemed to be incompatible with itself, but all the parts tested fine in other systems.

My Dad still has the best claim on oddest failure mode I've ever seen. His 1Ghz T-Bird developed an internal short. Not enough to kill it, but it would it basically be overheating the instant it was turned on, but kept working. It drew so much current that it melted the 12V lines on the power supply and popped it. Since my Dad was in the middle of his taxes, he took another power supply, soldered wires directly to the back of the motherboard (since the ATX connector was rather misshapen) and ran it for about two weeks like that with the CPU cooler screaming out at full blast. I believe we swapped out the motherboard and CPU only with identical models. He wanted no changes and kept it until he switched to using laptops as his daily drivers. Latitude D630 if I recall correctly.
 

ASK THE COMMUNITY