VAXen at home

Allison ajp166 at
Mon Oct 15 19:25:45 CDT 2007

>Subject: VAXen at home
>   From: ard at (Tony Duell)
>   Date: Mon, 15 Oct 2007 23:21:05 +0100 (BST)
>     To: cctalk at
>> > So you want me to start off with a VAX?
>> Lots of folks on this list have lots of nice things to say about the 11/750.
>Personally, I theink the 11/750 is not the best machine to try to keep 
>running. The reason is that the CPU is made up of a large-ish number of 
>custom gate array chips. Even when they were available as spares from DEC 
>they were very expensive, now they're unobtainanle other than by raiding 
>other 750s.

It's not that bad, lots of spares out there this side of the pond.
It's a nice system as it's fast enough to be useful and while a 
big VAX it's not a huge vax like 780 or 8650. That and there were
a fair number of machines kept in service that were supported.

>If you have the space (and it's large), try to get am 11/780. I've never 
>been inside one, but I've read the printset (schematics) and it seems to 
>be all standard chips. 

The air handlers and the power will get you.  It's a very nice well
ordered machine in many ways. 

>If you don't have the spave, and can stand the lack of speed, consider an 
>11/730. It's small (1 10.5" high rackmount unit), you can fit the 
>processor, disk and tape drives into a half-height rack (this was a 
>standard configuration). It's almost all standard chips, 2901 ALUs, TTL, 
>non-protected PALs, etc.

The only thing is a 730 is hard to expand to run fairly current VMS
and it's slow.  For that performance you can get a lot of other VAXen.
It's up side is for one rack it's small and power consumption is
within the realm of a 20A at 120V circuit with some of the smaller
single cab version down near 12-13A at 120V.


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