Hello and a warm welcome to my blog which will be about my adventures with my brand new Amiga machine, the Amigaone X5000.
Wait a minute, did you say new Amiga machine, in 2017? Well yes the Amiga is still around in 2017 thanks in large to the never say die attitude of its fanatical users and we even have new hardware to run our systems along with the latest edition of the operating system Amiga OS4.1 Final Edition which currently sits on update 1 as of December 2016.
Luckily for me, I have just become the owner of an Amigaone X5000 machine which is manufactured by the British based company A-Eon Technology. http://www.a-eon.com/
The X5000 is actually a follow-up to their previously released Amigaone X1000 machine which was released in 2010 and sold in limited quantities of around 1,000 units in total. Encouraged by the limited success of the initial machine, A-Eon have set about releasing a number of new machines with the hope of encouraging more users over to Amiga OS4.1.
The X5000 is the top end Amiga machine at the moment, and is aimed at the power user, although A-Eon plan to release a much cheaper lower end version codenamed the Tabor or A-1222 a little later this year.
The X5000 hardware specs are as follows:
Cyrus Motherboard specification – AmigaOne X5000
● Freescale P5020, 2.0GHz,64-bit, dual-core PowerPC CPU
● 2x DDR3 RAM slots (max 16Gb RAM)
● 8x USB 2.0 (6 external, 2 internal)
● 1x Gigabit Ethernet
● 1x PCIe x16 slot (Gen2 x4)
● 1x PCIe x4 slot (Gen2 x4)
● 2x PCIe x1 slot (Gen2 x1)
● 1x Xorro/Xorro (enhanced) PCIe x1 slot
● 2x PCI legacy slots
● 2x SATA 2.0 connectors
● 1x Xena/Xorro (enhanced)
● 1x RS232 serial interface
● 1x MicroSD connector and card
● 1x Boot Firmware on MicroSD card
● JTAG connector
● AmigaOS 4.1 beta for Cyrus Plus
● ATX form factor
My board was delivered by the ever reliable Amigakit http://www.amigakit.co.uk who are the main distributors of the X5000 in the UK and at present it is possible to buy either the motherboard on its own for a retail price of £1,440.00 inc VAT or a complete system including 2GB Ram, 1TB hard disk drive and Radeon R7 250 graphics card for £1,699 inc VAT.
Although the motherboard and full complete machines have been available from retailers worldwide since November 2016, i decided to save a little money and buy the motherboard plus the other components on their own, as well as take the opportunity to build a system from scratch which is something I had never attempted before.
I also took the decision to re-cycle my existing graphics and sound cards along with the SSD drive from my Amigaone 500 machine (another next generation Amiga machine from Italian firm Acube Systems that i purchased about 3 years ago.) So my X5000 system was being built with a Radeon HD 7750 card, 120GB SSD drive and an Envy-24 HT sound card.
One of the most interesting features of the X5000 motherboard which is code-named Cyrus+ is that on the reverse of the motherboard it features the names of all the Beta-testers along with the signatures of the architects at Ultra Varisys who manufactured this board. The board also has etched on the reverse “in memory of Jay Miner” who many regard as the ultimate Godfather of the Amiga, which i think is a nice touch.
I am housing my X5000 motherboard in a Fractal Design 3300 core case which you can see a picture of below:
Installation of the various components is quite PC like really and compared to my Amigaone 500 machine and the Sam460cr board this is based on, i am pleased to report that there is plenty of space and ventilation between the various slots as one of my old Amigaone500 machine was the lack of space in between slots and my graphics card was practically touching the SATA card.
As the current on board network driver is not yet supported, I have had to place in a RTL-8139 network card which came with the motherboard but as you can see plenty of room inside.
Here you can see the rear of the machine with all the components in their slots.
Once all the components are in, its time to switch on the machine and check that it all works and I am pleased to announce that it did and the first thing you are greeted with upon switch on is the A-Eon splash screen.
Next bit is the early control set up screen that you are greeted with. The motherboard came with a copy of AmigaOS4.1 Final Edition on a USB stick that you can use to install on to the motherboard. You can do one of two things here, either insert the USB stick into one of the ports and go to the command line option and enter usb reset ; boota to start installing Amiga OS4.1 or you can register your copy at http://www.hyperion-entertainment.biz with the supplied registration card, burn an ISO on a PC/Mac or another Amiga and pop the CD into the Amiga. Then is is just a case of pressing start AmigaOS for it to load from the CD.
Once installation of AmigaOS is complete which should take no more than about 2-3 minutes, a quick re-set of the machine is needed, et voila, Amiga OS4.1 Final Edition is installed on your machine.
The next step is now transferring the many games and pieces of classic Amiga software on to my new machine and configuring it to my taste, but for now I have a fully working Amigaone X5000.