Commodore A2386SX PC BridgeBoard

The most known BridgeBoard is ofcourse the A2088XT. It was in my humble opinion a bit late when Commodore came to the market with it. I remember my dad had 80386 machines in his office and I was hesitating what to do. Going to follow the Commodore Amiga grow path or towards PCs and it starting LAN capabilities. Getting a 8088 in the time 286 and 386 were available was for me the reason I never got a 8088 PC BridgeBoard and later one didn’t buy an Amiga 3000 or 4000 but went straight to a IBM PC clone with a 80386. Did they have a 386 for a reasonable price at that moment maybe I was using my Amiga longer.

The A2386SX BridgeBoard has support for 16 bit ISA slots. This is making it more interesting than the 8-bit 8088 version. This BridgeBoard is currently in my Amiga 2000.

It is very difficult to find 8 bit networkcards. 16 bit networkcards are easier to find. With Etherbridge you can use your PC Networkcard on your Amiga in AmigaOS/WorkBench.

At last I could get an A2386SX. Stock CPU and speed are 386SX @ 25mhz. Thanks to Tristan who repaired the floppy diskdrive controller and changed the Intel 80386SX25 into a Cyrix 486DLC50 which performs like a 80486DX-33.

The advantages of the A2386SX over the A2286 are the CPU speed and the onboard RAM of which I have 8 MB installed (fully occupied).

The controller is failing but soon fixed 🙂
And thanks to Tristan fixed 🙂
Norton System Information: Stock information
Norton System Information: Stock speed 18.9
Norton System Information: Cyrix 486 50 mhz speed 70.4

The Cyrix 486 @ 50 mhz is 3.7x faster than the 386SX @ 25 mhz (not bad).

The i386SX-25 removed
The i386SX removed and waiting for the 486-50 🙂
Look the beauty of the Texas Instruments 486-50 (TI486SXLC2-G50-PQ)
Summary mod/repair: 8 MB, 486-50 & fan, socket replaced, battery and controller
My A2386SX modded and repaired ready for shipment (Thanks Tristan Zondag!)

Soon photo and details come after it arrives 🙂

UPDATE: It arrived !

At last this is my A2386SX BridgeBoard
The Bridge
8 MB RAM installed
The external floppy diskdrive connector
Fan is recommended with the 486 @ 50 mhz
Currently these are the expansions in my 2000
A2386SX running with fan operational
8 MB in my A2386SX
5.25 floppy diskdrive has formated a 360k floppy disk

Time for some benchmarking

Neat Norton System Information 70.8 CPU Speed score
Norton System Information
AREAD copying benchmarks from AmigaOS to DOS

Booting the Amiga 2000 with A2386SX with MS-DOS 6.22:

Booting MS-DOS 6.22 on my A2386SX

I used a CF Card with JanusTools as my MS-DOS partition via hardfile. Check out my settings on JanusTools DOSType. Currently using a dedicated CF Card of 4 GB see info in add-on section below.

3Com EtherLink III 3C509B-TPO ISA card (Currently not installed, replaced by the Multi I/O Card)
UMC UM82C86 ISA 16 bit Multi I/O card (HDD, COM, LPT and Game Port)
Trident 8900D VGA ISA Videocard
CF Card reader for the PC harddisk
CF Card 4 GB dedicated as PC harddisk for the A2386SX

This is how my expanded Amiga 2000 looks at the moment