Joystick and Keyboard Q's

Discussion in 'Apple Collectors' started by SirFoxx, Jul 16, 2013.

  1. SirFoxx macrumors regular

    SirFoxx

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2012
    Location:
    Galien, Michigan
    #1
    Hello--
    The other day I went back to the junkshop to pick up the Apple Extended Keyboard. However, it had disappeared :/. But, as I was digging around the keyboard box, and came across an OmniKey Ultra by Northgate. I found a manual on this thing, and it said that it was basically a universal keyboard that could be used with most computers at the time. However, it said no where that it supported Macintosh. BUT, it does have two ADB ports on the back of it. I guess I wanted to know if anyone has one of these, or have an opinion on it.

    As for the joystick, there is a ADB Gravis Firebird on Ebay that my dad wants to get to use with my mac when we play games (Decent). The driver on Macintosh Gardens for the "firebird" says its for the 68k architecture. Do you think it would work with PPC Architecture?
     
  2. David Schmidt macrumors 6502

    David Schmidt

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2006
    Location:
    Southeastern USA
    #2
    I have one. It's the best keyboard there is for a PC, hands down. Built like a tank, infinitely configurable. Clicky keys. In no way will it connect to any Macintosh.

    That driver won't. But maybe you can find a different driver, or maybe it's already included with whatever version of MacOS you're using.
     
  3. MacTech68, Jul 17, 2013
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2013

    MacTech68 macrumors 68000

    MacTech68

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2008
    Location:
    Australia, Perth
    #3
    Hmmm.. Here's a PB1400 owner's recommendation for the FireBird: would seem it works on PPC.

    http://retromaccast.ning.com/profiles/blogs/new-mac-pb-1400c

    Of course, that's never quite a guarantee. :eek:

    I'm not sure about the driver naming and version numbers, but there are two on archive.org.

    A "Mac Firebird 1.0.3B1" dated 3/9/1996

    and "Mac Firebird 2 V1.0.2" dated 1/23/1998

    scroll down this page to find them:

    http://web.archive.org/web/20060203033922/http://www.gravis.com/support/sup_1058.html

    Regarding the Northgate keyboard, it seems there are some with only a PS2 port (6pin Mini-Din), and others with that PLUS two 4pin Mini-Din ports. Supposedly these may have been the OmniMac keyboard.

    I'm no expert on the Northgate, but there are references to the latter type being used on ADB Macs. :confused:

    Out of interest, CVT briefly resurrected the Northgate design:
    http://web.archive.org/web/20050207134545/http://www.cvtinc.com/products/keyboards/menu.htm
     
  4. SirFoxx thread starter macrumors regular

    SirFoxx

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2012
    Location:
    Galien, Michigan
    #4
    My dad put the joystick on his watch list on ebay...As for the keyboard, the mouse works, however the keyboard does not. My dad tried every different possible combination for the dip-switches and nothing. The thing he said that concerned him was that the caps lock light didnt light up when you press the button. The other "lock" lights do light up, but that doesn't mean much...I know the LED is good because when the computer powers up, it flashes the three lights, so I know they are good. Could it be possible that some part of the keyboard is bad, or incompatible?
     
  5. MacTech68 macrumors 68000

    MacTech68

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2008
    Location:
    Australia, Perth
    #5
    It's possible that the ROM in the keyboard lacks support for the 4pin MiniDin ADB port.

    And yes, the first 3 dip switches set the computer type and there are 8 combinations of which only 6 are noted in the manual.

    But as David Schmidt says, it looks like it's a no-go. :(

    Still, they appear to be a sought after keyboard.
     
  6. SirFoxx thread starter macrumors regular

    SirFoxx

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    Jul 9, 2012
    Location:
    Galien, Michigan
    #6
    We tried the last two combinations and its a no-go. So basically, the guts from an OmniMac was stuck in this keyboard, but they stuck in the EEPROM from the IBM-only version of the keyboard?
     
  7. MacTech68 macrumors 68000

    MacTech68

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    Mar 16, 2008
    Location:
    Australia, Perth
    #7
    I'm guessing, but yes.
     
  8. jekyl macrumors 6502

    jekyl

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2011
    Location:
    Mid-Michigan
    #8
    Pity you aren't closer to Lansing, I have a couple Mac Extended keyboards in the closet.
     
  9. SirFoxx thread starter macrumors regular

    SirFoxx

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2012
    Location:
    Galien, Michigan
    #9
    The keyboard doesn't work with my mac :( ...how much do they go for? Also my dad got the joystick, had to install the driver for it to act correctly. Soooo, in order to get the gravis firebird to work with your mac, you need the driver, which works on PPC.
    Maybe we could work out some sort of deal?
     
  10. jekyl, Jul 26, 2013
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2013

    jekyl macrumors 6502

    jekyl

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2011
    Location:
    Mid-Michigan
    #10
    If you want to pick them up they're yours.

    I have some other stuff as well, Ethernet boards for MacSE and MacII, logic boards for Mac512K and MacSE, old Mac internal floppy drives, a few Mac SCSI drives. Maybe some cables.
     

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