Surviving STs

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Foxie
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Surviving STs

Postby Foxie » Mon Jan 15, 2018 3:13 am

I just had a quick look on UK ebay to see what STs were fetching these days. To my surprise

1: There are so few of them! Hardly any compared to A500s.
2: Most of them seem to be STEs (what happened to those millions of STFMs sold?)
3: They cost a fortune! Much more expensive than an A500.

I really can't fathom why. I can only suppose two things. Either not many STs have survived for some reason. Or musicians have snapped up all surviving machines and are commanding a premium for them.

With STEs being so common by comparison, does that mean there's no longer any point writing code for the STFM? Back in the day you really needed to target the STFM to get a decent audience. But where have all those machines gone?

Given this, I can well and truly forget about my dreams of owning a TT or Falcon. Or even a MegaSTE.

Has anyone found a cheap source of STs? And does anyone own an STFM but not an STE?

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Re: Surviving STs

Postby Wayne123 » Mon Jan 15, 2018 4:32 am

They go for pretty cheap on Ebay in the U.S., Amigas are getting expensive here.

There are two U.S. dealers who bought up a lot of Atari inventory, Bruce at B & C Computervision told me he had over 1000 ST computers.
Last edited by Wayne123 on Tue Jan 16, 2018 12:59 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Surviving STs

Postby Atari030 » Mon Jan 15, 2018 4:44 am

STFM's are by far the most common in Australia. I have 5 or 6 or something, and only 1 STE. This may be why there aren't too many around. I keep a lot of spares and so do a lot of other people.

Don't be discouraged. I have 2 Falcons a TT030 and a MegaSTE. They are out there.

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Re: Surviving STs

Postby LaceySnr » Mon Jan 15, 2018 5:02 am

To be fair, Atari030 does have some things I'd generally file under "unobtainium" ;)

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Re: Surviving STs

Postby Arne » Mon Jan 15, 2018 9:16 am

LaceySnr wrote:To be fair, Atari030 does have some things I'd generally file under "unobtainium" ;)


Eagle, Medusa, Milan... :?:
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Re: Surviving STs

Postby Fenix » Mon Jan 15, 2018 10:40 am

I found a 1040stfm whilst cleaning out the garage along with two A500

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Re: Surviving STs

Postby arf » Mon Jan 15, 2018 5:41 pm

Arne wrote:
LaceySnr wrote:To be fair, Atari030 does have some things I'd generally file under "unobtainium" ;)


Eagle, Medusa, Milan... :?:


E-ST! Microbox!

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Re: Surviving STs

Postby czietz » Mon Jan 15, 2018 7:51 pm

Foxie wrote:I really can't fathom why. I can only suppose two things. Either not many STs have survived for some reason. Or musicians have snapped up all surviving machines and are commanding a premium for them.


Maybe you live in the wrong country. :wink:

I had a look at German eBay listings. I'd say, on average one STF is sold there per day, so I wouldn't consider them that rare. Also, looking at past sales, many of them seem to sell for around 50 € (ca. 45 GBP, 60 USD, of course e.g. boxed ones cost more), which I would call overly expensive. As for STEs, not so long ago, I bought a 1040STE in very good condition (very little yellowing, warranty sticker still in place) for 70 € (62 GBP, 85 USB) from an eBay seller.

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Re: Surviving STs

Postby Foxie » Mon Jan 15, 2018 8:27 pm

czietz wrote:I had a look at German eBay listings. I'd say, on average one STF is sold there per day, so I wouldn't consider them that rare. Also, looking at past sales, many of them seem to sell for around 50 € (ca. 45 GBP, 60 USD, of course e.g. boxed ones cost more),


That seems pretty reasonable. Any idea how much MegaSTEs are going for?

One thing that frustrates me is how everyone seems to have forgotten about the ST now. Despite it being one of the most popular computers in this country in the late 80s / early 90s. The Amiga is slightly better off in that more people remember it fondly. But even that suffers from neglect too.

I saw a UK TV ad recently which was set in I guess 1990. They had all sorts of "retro" things scattered around the home, including a Game Boy. But guess what computer they had? A stinking Macintosh Plus!! Like anyone in the UK had one of those.

I think these sorts of things are produced by kids who never lived in those days. They got their history on computing from reading American web sites and Youtube videos. So of course, all they hear about was IBM and Apple. Also, so many people talking about the NES when actually most of the gaming in the UK was done on computers back then. People are literally importing their perceived history of computing from America.

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Re: Surviving STs

Postby Atari030 » Mon Jan 15, 2018 8:38 pm

I just gave away my classic Mac, to a mate. We just moved and I found a couple more A500's I didn't know I had. They are as prolific as rabbits. I guess cause no one wants them. :-)

Transputers are unobtainable. Most of my stuff I got when people were throwing them out, 20 years ago. I have since learned that if you want a console etc, wait till that point then grab one. If you can get a Wii, PS2 etc for $20, do it, stash it, then revisit it when you are ready.

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Re: Surviving STs

Postby czietz » Mon Jan 15, 2018 9:24 pm

Foxie wrote:That seems pretty reasonable. Any idea how much MegaSTEs are going for?


MegaSTEs are much more rare and thus more expensive here as well. I bid on some MegaSTEs on eBay Germany last year, albeit unsuccessfully. The ones I bid on sold for about 200 - 250 €. TTs and Falcons appear even less often on eBay; I couldn't tell for how much they're sold.

Foxie wrote: Also, so many people talking about the NES when actually most of the gaming in the UK was done on computers back then.


What I find interesting is that in Germany, as far as I know, the ST was marketed as and consequently seen as more of a "professional" computer than a gaming platform. Thus, the typical ST setup included an SM124 mono monitor, as you can still see on the eBay listings today. There's probably a reason why so much non-gaming software for the ST was developed in Germany: Cubase, Notator, Signum (word processor), Calamus (DTP), NVDI, GFA Basic, just to name a few.

Of course, having a mono monitor excluded you from most of the commercial game releases. So when I remember gaming on my ST, I think of PD/freeware/shareware titles that could be used on a mono monitor, most of which are probably long forgotten -- maybe with notable exceptions such as Ballerburg.

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Re: Surviving STs

Postby EmpireAndrew » Mon Jan 15, 2018 11:14 pm

Wayne123 wrote:They go fro pretty cheap on Ebay in the U.S., Amigas are getting expensive here.

There are two U.S. dealers who bought up a lot of Atari inventory, Bruce at B & C Computervision told me he had over 1000 ST computers.


Cheap in the US? I don't know where you get that idea...

ST stuff costs a lot more here than in Europe as it's rarer.
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Re: Surviving STs

Postby viking272 » Mon Jan 15, 2018 11:38 pm

I picked up a 4mb 520 STE last year in the UK for £50 Inc shipping. It was on eBay.

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Re: Surviving STs

Postby LaceySnr » Mon Jan 15, 2018 11:49 pm

[quote="Atari030"]I just gave away my classic Mac, to a mate. We just moved and I found a couple more A500's I didn't know I had. They are as prolific as rabbits. I guess cause no one wants them. :-)

I've been after one... will take one off your hands if you've run out of space now ;)

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Re: Surviving STs

Postby Wayne123 » Tue Jan 16, 2018 12:58 am

EmpireAndrew wrote:
Wayne123 wrote:They go fro pretty cheap on Ebay in the U.S., Amigas are getting expensive here.

There are two U.S. dealers who bought up a lot of Atari inventory, Bruce at B & C Computervision told me he had over 1000 ST computers.


Cheap in the US? I don't know where you get that idea...

ST stuff costs a lot more here than in Europe as it's rarer.


I guess it depends on what you consider cheap, I am comparing ST prices to what Amiga 500s sell at.
Here are some sold listings from Ebay. I got my 1040STF in like new condition, in a box for much less than what Amiga 500s go for lately.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Atari-Mega-ST- ... SwmudZ~lNZ

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Atari-Mega-ST- ... SwZKBZFcng

https://www.ebay.com/itm/AWESOME-VINTAG ... SwvD5aDHo8

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Atari-1040-STE ... SwAtpZlPA4

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Atari-1040-STE ... Sw8b1aMb0V

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Atari-Mega-STE ... SwuLFZ1rB1

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Atari-Mega-STE ... Swy~BaJcUg

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Atari-Mega-STE ... SwGPxaCNTx
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Re: Surviving STs

Postby Smonson » Tue Jan 16, 2018 7:57 am

If you want an old computer from ebay, but don't like to pay high prices, my favourite technique is to buy several totally broken ones and assemble all the good parts together into one working computer.

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Re: Surviving STs

Postby joska » Tue Jan 16, 2018 8:05 am

Atari030 wrote:We just moved and I found a couple more A500's I didn't know I had. They are as prolific as rabbits. I guess cause no one wants them. :-)


A500 prices has skyrocketed lately, most likely due to the arrival of the Vampire 500. Much like what happened with the A600 a couple of years ago. Not long ago you could get both of these for next to nothing (or even nothing), but not anymore.
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Re: Surviving STs

Postby Atari030 » Tue Jan 16, 2018 8:39 am

Yup. And in ten years PS2's will skyrocket as well. I would have loved an A600 (nice and compact), now they are just silly prices. Maybe I should hold on the the A500's and milk them :-)

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Re: Surviving STs

Postby Foxie » Wed Jan 17, 2018 3:56 pm

Amiga 500s aren't too expensive here yet. They seem to go for £50-100, sometimes less. There's one boxed machine on ebay now for £200 but that's exceptional. I'm seeing STEs listed for £130 to £260. That's like half the price of a Falcon a few years ago! One STE is listed for £70 and it's completely dead! Madness.

STFMs seem to fetch about £90-£160 but they're less common for some reason.

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Re: Surviving STs

Postby alexh » Wed Jan 17, 2018 5:42 pm

The best place to buy retro computers isn't eBay or GumTree or anywhere like. People who sell on these platforms are out for as much as they can get and think they have something worth a fortune.

Instead use word of mouth. Ask friends, relatives, colleagues etc. You'd be surprised how many were stashed in lofts and can be had for next to nothing if they believe you will cherish them.

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Re: Surviving STs

Postby EmpireAndrew » Wed Jan 17, 2018 10:53 pm

Wayne123 wrote: I guess it depends on what you consider cheap, I am comparing ST prices to what Amiga 500s sell at.
Here are some sold listings from Ebay. I got my 1040STF in like new condition, in a box for much less than what Amiga 500s go for lately.


Ah, yes Amiga 500s are double the money in my experience.
But also quite rare in the US.

Those MegaSTE's were fairly priced I'd say.

Some bargains in the $125 range for STE's there too, although some had missing keys and whatnot.

which reminds me, I do need to get an SM124 this year...
1977 VCS Heavy Sixxer (Boxed)
1990 Atari 1040STE, 4MB, UltraSatan, TOS 2.06, TT Touch -> Atari SC1435 Colour CRT Monitor
1991 Atari TT030, 2/64MB, Int 8GB Gigafile SCSI2CF, TOS 3.06, CaTTamaran Accelerator -> Atari TTM195 19" Mono CRT Monitor
1993 Atari Falcon030, 14MB, Int 4GB IDE2SD, TOS 4.04 -> Atari PTC1426 Color CRT Monitor
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Re: Surviving STs

Postby mlynn1974 » Thu Jan 18, 2018 12:32 am

From about 2002-2008 STFMs were quite common on eBay and reasonably priced but the price of old computers has increased steadily since then despite the fact that emulators are now fast and available and products like MisT and ZX-Uno are available. I mean who would buy real hardware when they could play their games on an emulator, unless they are seriously keen. I don't know how many STs were sold in the UK (1 million? 750,000? - who knows!). That's a lot of computers to go to landfill. Mind you, how many PCs of that age have survived?

Maybe long term storage is in people's lofts and garages. If an average of 2 STFM\STE computers are advertised and sold every week on eBay in the UK for the last 16 years then that's only 1664 STs.

As Alexh says probably best to get them through friends and relatives. My STF and STFM were £20 each about 1998 when I was converting my disks to MSA. He also had a hard disk for sale but we couldn't get it to run so I didn't buy that. I got a 4Mb STE in 2008 for my mate for about £30.

I would like a Sinclair 128k (with toast rack) but they are getting rare and expensive.
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Re: Surviving STs

Postby Wayne123 » Thu Jan 18, 2018 7:10 am

EmpireAndrew wrote:
Wayne123 wrote: I guess it depends on what you consider cheap, I am comparing ST prices to what Amiga 500s sell at.
Here are some sold listings from Ebay. I got my 1040STF in like new condition, in a box for much less than what Amiga 500s go for lately.




Those MegaSTE's were fairly priced I'd say.


https://www.ebay.com/itm/Atari-Mega-STE ... Swy~BaJcUg

I was going to bid on this one but I had just spent a bunch of money on an Amiga Video Toaster Setup.
I almost never see TT030s up for sale, I have wanted one since the first time I saw one being demoed at the Atari dealer I used to frequent.

I have a $1700 dental bill coming up next month so I won't be looking for anything for awhile. I could get a Falcon for that.
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Re: Surviving STs

Postby atarian90 » Sun Jan 21, 2018 9:08 am

I still remember seeing Atari 1040STs for $10 on eBay around 2000-ish. 8O I bought a couple spares because I knew at that price, if they didn't sell, they would go into the landfill.

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Re: Surviving STs

Postby Foxie » Mon Jan 22, 2018 12:21 am

Wayne123 wrote:I was going to bid on this one but I had just spent a bunch of money on an Amiga Video Toaster Setup.


The world's longest-running internet video show, the Funday Pawpet Show, used to use a fully-specced Video Toaster rig up until the mid 2000s or a bit later. I believe the machine is sitting dormant in a basement somewhere at the moment. I'd love to get my paws on that one, but even if they were willing to part with it shipping to the UK would be far too expensive. Also, the video toaster being NTSC-only makes it not very useful for me.

Those MegaSTEs look like an OK price. Only about 50% more than I'm seeing some of the STEs selling for. I think a MegaSTE would be a good basis for a music setup, with an ISA video card. The other option in the same price range is the Firebee but I don't know how good music software support is on that machine.

Wayne123 wrote:I have a $1700 dental bill coming up next month so I won't be looking for anything for awhile. I could get a Falcon for that.


Is that how much Falcons are going for these days? I remember them selling for about £500 not too long ago. I reckon you could find a TT for less than that, if you could actually find one at all. Another saving with the TT is that you can use the video output in high-res mode. A Falcon needs a Supervidel to get any decent work done on it.

atarian90 wrote:I still remember seeing Atari 1040STs for $10 on eBay around 2000-ish. 8O I bought a couple spares because I knew at that price, if they didn't sell, they would go into the landfill.


*shudder*

I don't like the idea of STs in landfill. Do these people have no respect or something? I suppose the poor 520STs get a particularly bad life, since so much software needs 1MB. Simpler to toss it and buy a 1040 than solder an upgrade.


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