Amiga 1200 HD/40 Compact Flash Modification

A1200 innards This is by no means the most challenging of modifications to be made to an Amiga. It certainly was fun, though. It took me about two days to complete as the two systems I used, the 1200 and my 4000, are in two places.

The idea was to replace the aging 1.4GB hard drive I have been using in my Amiga 1200 with a flash card. I had read about other systems using them -- Linux-based, the Commodore-One, etc. -- and figured, "What the Hell."

I purchased a few Compact Flash to ATA adapters from Mach5 Products for about $20 each. I ordered a mother-board mount (used in the A4000 -- another story,) a SFF (small form-factor, 2.5" 44-pin for the A1200,) and a standard 3.5" ATA adpater. I got them pretty quickly, too.

There are not many pictures here mostly because of the nature of this mod, which did not require any soldering, cutting, splicing, or anything really fun like that. I already tested the idea in the Amiga 4000 desktop, and it worked great.

The idea for this was pretty simple: trim down the installation already on the hard drive, then use the Amiga 4000 to copy everything over to the flash. The A4000 is equiped with an X-Surf which comes with a 40-pin IDE port and a 44-pin IDE port. An easy and simple solution, right? Wrong... neither port would see the CF card. Well, I could have used the on-board IDE port and booted from SCSI, but that would have been too easy, aside from the fact that I had already screwed down the SCSI drive which sits directly above it. So, I just zip'd and lzx'd up what was on the hard drive to a Zip disk and used my PC to burn it to CD.

Now the chore became easy. I booted up the Amiga 1200 using the OS3.9 Emergency Boot disk I had created and partitioned the CF card just as if it were a real hard drive using HDToolBox. Then I rebooted and used a CD-ROM attached to the Blizzard 1230 SCSI adapter connected to the Blizzard 1260. I had already copied the utilities I need to extract the archives to the CD. Once done, everything was disconnected, and I rebooted onto the CF card. Now I have a faster, quiter Amiga 1200 :) Even with all of my Internet junk and some WHDLoad games installed, I am using only about 113MB of space. Plenty of room for a little playing.

I attached the SFF CF adapter to the 1200's hard drive mount using long screws which fit through the mounting holes. The copper things you see are up-side down motherboard spacers, which happened to be the only thing I had handy to fit the screws I used. I also used a couple of washers on each side to give the components and pins on the underside of the board clearance so as not to short out.

I want to make a new badge which says "A1200CF/512" :)

While I was in Sam's Club today, I found a 1GB Lexar CF card for $70. I am going to use that later to give me room for some downloads, perhaps some music as well to be played with AMPlifier.

My next project, aside from cleaning up the 4000 system's flash, is to get ahold of a AdIDE2 with Novia kit and put another SFF in my Amiga 500... perhaps I will outfit all of my Amiga models with CF cards (500, 2000, maybe 1000.)

The fools... and they called me mad... AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!

Check out my other Amiga-related sites: