There are many places on the Internet where one can read about the
original TI-99/4 computer that was released before the TI-99/4A.
However, most people (if not all) own TI-99/4 setup's that were made
throughout various years (1979-1981) and do not have an entire setup
manufactured during the TI-99/4's very first year of production, 1979.
Sure, one could find a TI-99/4 that was made in 1979, but my goal is to
build an entire 1979-made setup where everything from the
console/monitor straight down to the boxes are all dated 1979! To
actually build a system with everything that was available and
manufactured in 1979 would not only be interesting to have, but also a
historical piece since it would be the setup that started it all back
in 1979. If you are interested in finding out more on this project,
head to the 1979 Setup Project section below.
2007 I decided to try
and build an original "everything made in 1979" TI-99/4 setup. This
meant that if you could afford everything that was on the market for
the 99/4 in the first year of production, what all could you have
bought? This might not sound too hard at first, but the catch is that
everything also had to be MANUFACTURED in 1979! The main motivation
behind doing this is because nobody that I know
of has attempted to build a fully blown 1979-made setup, and having the
original first year system/items all together would be a nice historical
piece for the 99/4 and 99/4A computers. Who knows if building such a
setup will be even doable in 5-10 years time, as it's already hard
enough just to find 99/4 items made in any year.
Now you might be wondering how I can tell if items are actually made in
1979. Well, the
nice thing about Texas Instruments is that when it came to labeling
boxes, hardware, etc. they pretty much put date codes on everything
codes in 1979 would start with LTA and can usually be found on the
bottom of cartridges and hardware). Something that carries a
date code of LTA 4779, for example, would mean it was actually
manufactured in the
47th week of 1979. It's these date codes that make my quest possible.
All of the 99/4 items pictured in the sections below were
available in 1979, some of which are from my own collection (since I
don't have everything that was manufactured 1979, I had to ask
permission to use other people's pictures to give a glimpse on what
certain items looked like). I also included a table which shows the items that I
personally own towards this project and what the date codes/copyrights
are on them. Only the items that have
a 1979 date code and
copyright are counted towards this project,
and if you have anything that I am missing shoot me an e-mail at email@example.com.
I figured it's probably
about time someone put together a fully-blown 1979 manufactured TI-99/4
system, since it would be the one that started it all. To date I do not
know of anyone who has
put together a complete 1979 setup, so hopefully this will not only be
a first but also a great way to showcase the original TI-99/4!
Texas Instruments 99/4 (*NOT 4A*) Page The
original TI-99/4 page on the net by Andrew Gurudata. The site claims to
be coming back in the summer of 2007, but as of now is still down. The
link above takes you to an archived version of the page from 1999 which
should suffice until everything is revamped and opened