- Type: Home computer
- Manufacturer: Commodore
- Released: 1992
- Discontinued: 1992
- Operating system: AmigaOS 2.0
- ROM: 512 KB Kickstart 2.04
- CPU: 68000 @ 7.16 MHz (NTSC), 7.09 MHz (PAL)
- Memory: 1 MB (10 MB maximum, additional 128 MB possible with CPU upgrade)
- Built in media: 880 KB floppy drive
- Graphics: 320×200 6 bpp up to 1440×567i 2 bpp PAL
- Palette: 4096 colors (4096 on-screen colors in “HAM” mode)
- Sound: 4x 8-bit channels, 28 kHz stereo
- Predecessor: Amiga 500
- Successor: Amiga 600
Released 1992: The Commodore Amiga 500 Plus (A500 Plus or A500+) is an enhanced version of the original Amiga 500 computer. It was notable for introducing new versions of the AmigaOS (Kickstart ROM and Workbench), and for improved custom chips, known as the Enhanced Chip Set (ECS).
Although officially introduced in 1992, some Amiga 500 Plus units had already been sold (masquerading as Amiga 500 models, and with no prior announcement) during late 1991. It has been speculated that Commodore had already sold out the remaining stocks of Amiga 500s, before the run-up to the profitable Christmas sales period. In order to make enough A500s before Christmas, Commodore used stocks of the new 8A revision motherboards destined for the A500+. Many users were unaware that they were purchasing anything other than a standard Amiga 500. Amiga 500 Plus was discontinued and replaced by the Amiga 600 in summer 1992, making it the shortest-lived Amiga model.
Mainly due to the new Kickstart ROM, a few popular games failed to work on the Amiga 500 Plus. This problem was solved by third parties who produced Kickstart ROM switching boards, that could allow the Amiga 500 Plus to be downgraded to Kickstart 1.2 or 1.3. It also encouraged game developers to use better programming habits, which was important since Commodore was going to release a new generation of Amiga computers later the same year, the Amiga 1200 and Amiga 4000. Programs such as “Relokick”, was also released (and included with an issue of CU Amiga) which loaded a Kickstart 1.3 ROM image into memory and booted the machine into Kickstart 1.3, allowing incompatible software to run. For some games, updated compatible versions were later released.
My Amiga 500 Plus
The machine was untested, but the price was very reasonable because I told them I could pick it up. It was within a 1 hour driving distance from my home. A untested unit could be a bit gamble with this model, as it got an internal clock battery that usually leaks due to aging. The battery “acid” ( a strong base) could damage the mainboard traces, sockets, chips, sometimes beyond repair. I also got around 200 copied floppy diskettes, and external disk drive and a 4-5 joysticks along with this machine. Before turning the power on I opened the machine to remove the battery and check for damages. Luckily there was only minor leakage and no damages at all. I replaced the battery with a coin cell battery holder for a CR3032 battery and soldered on a diode to prevent it from charging. The computer worked great with no issues at all.