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The C65 in the press ...

  • I didn't know where to post this, but it somehow fits here... this is a blog article about the sale of a C65 prototype... but what's interesting is that the picture shows a C65 screen with a different font, also the rainbow stripes look broken here:


    https://www.tweakpc.de/news/40…-bei-81-450-euro-beendet/


    is that "strange font" ROM version known?

  • is that "strange font" ROM version known?

    It's the German/Austrian ROM 910429. This auction is also mentioned in this thread with 12 photos from the auction. There you can also see a bigger sized photo from this startscreen.


    C65 with RAM expansion with lots of photos (old auction from November 2017)



    Maybe the shown C65 has some memory problems which causes the different chars at the rainbow?


    But the checksum $E96A is the same as in the available ROM 910429.


    The regular startscreen of this ROM 910429 looks so (with a yellow border):


  • i can't say for sure, but really that C65 looks faulty.

    Not only are the PETSCI chars wrong, the colors of the Rainbow seem to be of as well

    Both light blue and orange seem to be white, while yellow is a kind of brownish.


    I know that there are ROMs at Zimmers where the description states, that there is a slightly different font used

    it's the 910111-390488-01.bin:

    A bit modified character set at $9000, with taller b and d letters, for instance.

    Normal characters at $D000.


    and the 910429.bin (like shown Snoopy s picture above)

    German character set at $9000

    Normal characters at $D000.


    Strange....

  • Any clue/idea, why or how it happened ?
    but probably due to the rareness of the C65 nobody investigated, i suppose ?!

  • I guess it was a problem with the manufacturing process of the prototype chips (palette memory being inside the VIC-III chip). I vividly remember the chips were marked with "WAFER#6", "WAFER#3" etc., in order to narrow down which chips worked and which chips only kind-of-worked ;)


    Well, for the seller, it adds to the mystique. I can easily see future auctions "VIC-III with faulty colors, EXTREMELY EXTREMELY RARE!"...

  • Well, for the seller, it adds to the mystique. I can easily see future auctions "VIC-III with faulty colors, EXTREMELY EXTREMELY RARE!"...

    Selling a non-functional C65 - ultra rare :-D

  • Most of the C65 keyboards that were sold after Commodores liquidation, were

    keyboards with no print on Top (but the Front prints are on already).

    We have some of those at M.E.G.A.


    i was veeery lucky, when i found a C65 keyboard that had completely printed keys.

    (That's the keyboard i am using with my Nexys4 atm).

  • In issue 25 of the magazine "Twin Cities 128: The Commodore 128 Journal" of the year 1989 there is an essay about rumours of a C65 at page 3 and 9. I had thrown the text through an OCR program and corrected the typos:


    Rumor Opinion & Mayhem


    As neat as the Commodore 65 (what it is called in West Chester engineering circles) hardware is, there are a number of reasons why most Commodore industry analysts are predicting that either it will never see the light of day, or if it does appear, it will be disastrous flop.


    The first, and perhaps foremost, question mark is software development. It is no secret that for the past two years, major software developers (especially game developers) are looking to reduce the number of formats and systems they are supporting. Given the fact that most large developers are already supporting two major Commodore formats, namely 5.25 170K Commodore 64 (128) disks and 3.5" 880K Amiga disks, it is understandable why software developers might be weary of adding yet another Commodore system/format to their product line, especially one which in its native mode would be completely incompatible with either of the existing Commodore systems. This is the same spectre which haunted our own Commodore 128 and prevented many software houses from developing native mode software for our machine. If this scenario would again be played out with the Commodore 65, "64 mode" then would be this machine's "saving grace". Or would it? Consider this: how many C-64 programs come on, or or will even work on 3.5" floppy disks? Also, given the ten million C-64 and C-128 systems already on desktops across the planet, 99.9% of which are connected to at least one 5.25" disk drive; how likely is that developers are going to rush to move their applications to 3.5" disks for a system that has no sales track record?


    "After all, Commodore may have forgotten the past four years, but Commodore owners certainly have not."


    Which brings us to the next major question mark for the C-65: sales. Who does Commodore believe is going to buy this machine? I can't see Macintosh users, MSDOS users, or Apple II owners running out to buy this machine. Clearly the largest potential market for the C-65 is Commodore's existing customer base of eight bit computerists. However, I wonder how many C-64 and C-128 owners will buy the C-65, especially if Commodore cannot demonstrate its willingness to support and stimulate development for its older eight bit products? I suspect that this issue will be particularly acute given this machine's similarity to the 128. After all Commodore may have forgotten the past four years, but Commodore owners certainly have not. During those four years Commodore 8 bitters have witnessed Commodore turning its back on its line of eight bit computers, opting instead to focus nearly all of the companies' resources on Amiga & MSDOS products. Four years ago, potential 128 owners had the hope that Commodore was going to play an active role in encouraging 128 sales and development. Today, I don't think potential C-65 owners can realistically share that same hope. And without that hope, the C-65 in their eyes is just an overpriced C-64 with a built-in disk drive that won't boot most popular C-64 titles.


    The last major hurdle for the C-65 is simple momentum. Currently Commodore plans to have this machine ready to sell by mid-November of 1989. However, since the machine is not even in the prototype stage it was unable to make an appearance at the Summer CES in Chicago. This means that retailers, wholesalers, and software developers did not have a chance to put the C-65 into their Christmas sales plans. Upon introduction the machine will likely have very little (if any) retail distribution or commercial software development in place. Add to this the fact that Commodore does not have anything even resembling a dealer network and one has to assume that the C-65 is going to be a very slow starter saleswise.


    All of these factors combined paint a rather dismal future for this potential C-64 and C-128 replacement product. But aside from the realities of the marketplace, I think there is yet another reason why this product is shaping up to be a monumental disaster for Commodore. In my opinion the introduction of this product does nothing more than antagonize Commodore's existing eight bit and Amiga customer base. On the eight bit side, the continued de-emphasis of the 64 and 128 product lines will be accelerated, the likely result being the further discouragement of third party software development even worse peripheral shortages. Amiga owners will be unhappy with Commodore's diversion of resources away from the development of the litany of promised, but not yet delivered products for their machines. In addition, the introduction of another sub $700 graphics "gee whiz" box will do nothing to inspire the confidence of Amiga 500 owners in Commodore's long term commitment to their "closed architecture" Amiga. Given that Commodore draws most of its business from within these customer niches, can Commodore really afford their alienation?


    To end this essay, I must point out that it is by no means certain that the C-65 will end up being released. However, there are numerous indications that it will. There are those that would say that at this early date I should not even be commenting on clandestine development. However, ever since Irving Gould himself publicly leaked this information in a late April interview in the Wall Street Journal, wild rumors have been circulating. A number of these rumors even went so far as to suggest that the machine under development would be C-128 compatible and herald a new age of Commodore 8 bit support. Clearly this is not the case. My goal in writing this piece is to try and point out the folly the C-65, but even more importantly, you should understand that the release of such a product in and of itself provides no additional support for Commodore 64 and 128 owners. If there is a "silver lining" in all of this, it is that such events may make it easier for Commodore to turn over that responsibility to someone who is willing to provide that support.


    Here is the German translation by DeepL: