The Amiga wiki last edited by DeliciousBees on 05/25/14 10:23PM
View full history
The first Amiga computer model, the A1000, was released in 1985 by Commodore Inc.
The design team was headed up by Jay Miner and development of the system began in 1982 under the Amiga Corporation company. Commodore acquired Amiga Corporation in the summer of 1984, snatching the Amiga chipset from under the nose of Atari, who originally funded the project. Commodore filed for bankruptcy in 1994, despite the success of the A1200 and CD32.
The Amiga range was based on the Motorola 68000 chipset, but made use of proprietary graphics and sound co-processors (codenamed Denise and Paula respectively), which took the load off of the CPU and allowed the Amiga to process more than just gaming graphics extremely efficiently. The Amiga revolutionized video production, providing an affordable CG solution with the Newtek Video Toaster (which later evolved into the Newtek TriCaster, the core of Giant Bomb's video production). It was the first consumer grade computer to be able to sample and record stereo audio in 44.1khz (CD quality) at the time. Over the lifetime of the computer, three graphics and sound chipsets were used: OCS (Original ChipSet), ECS (Enhanced ChipSet) and AGA (Advanced Graphics Architecture).
|1985||Amiga 1000||Lorraine||OCS||256k onboard, upgradable to 512k||v1.0-v1.3, on floppy disc|| |
32 on screen,
|1987||Amiga 500||Rock Lobster||OCS||512k onboard, upgradable to 1MB||v1.2 or v1.3, in ROM|
A500+ - ECS variant
A600 - v2.05 variant (codename "Junebug")
A600HD - includes hard drive
CDTV - Hi-fi case and CD-ROM A500+ variant
64 on screen,
|1987||Amiga 2000||The Boss||OCS||1MB onboard, upgradable to 8MB||v1.3 or v2.0, in ROM|
A1500 - UK only, second floppy instead of hard drive
A2000C - ECS variant
A2500 - Pro variant with 68030 CPU "accelerator"
64 on screen,
|1990||Amiga 3000||B2||ECS||2MB onboard, upgradable to 16MB||v1.3 or v2.0, in ROM|
A3000UX - bundled with Unix
A3000T - tower variant
256 on screen,
|1992||Amiga 1200||Channel Z||AGA||2MB onboard, upgradable to 8MB||v3.0, in ROM||CD32 - CD-ROM + no keyboard variant, not RAM upgradable (codename "Spellbound")|
4096 on screen,
|1993||Amiga 4000||Pandora||AGA||2MB onboard, upgradable to 16MB||v3.0, in ROM||A4000T - Tower case, 68040 CPU|
4096 on screen,
The AmigaOS originally was split into two parts, the Kickstarter and the Workbench.
The Amiga 1000 required a Kickstarter disc to boot before any other disc could be loaded. The benefits of this were easy OS upgrades (v1.0-1.3), however it also provided an easy vector for the first Amiga viruses to spread. The Amiga 500 onwards stored the Kickstarter (v1.2+) in ROM, thereby eliminating the need for an initial disc boot.
The Workbench was an optional windowing system and file manager, similar to Mac OS or Windows. Unlike those systems, games could launch at boot instead of the Workbench in order to give them larger access to system resources.