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I Bought an Unused Alpha Tower II Devkit Case


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Album: https://imgur.com/a/ptzp4Vl

 

Saw this pop up for sale locally and made the trip to pick it up. He said his father-in-law was an IT contractor, and apparently he originally got the case empty.

I got back home and opened it up to find the original case hardware kit sealed in its cardboard box, taped inside the drive bay next to a power cable in a bag. A silica gel pack was taped to the floor of the case. The IO connectors were zip tied together, tucked away in a corner. I am extra certain this case was never used, because the metal plate covering the DVD drive bay was not punched out.

My assumption is that Microsoft ordered cases from a supplier (says Yeou Chih on the inside) and hand-assembled all 50 units themselves in Redmond. I'm guessing that this case was one that either arrived damaged, or just never got used. If there were rumored to be 50 units, then I suppose this is unit 51. The date code on the back is 4-18-01.

I'm not entirely sure what to do with it. The inside is perfect, but the outside is a bit rough from kicking around in a basement. Ideally, I'd like to purchase the parts to remake the Alpha tower like N64 Freak did, but considering how difficult it is to find the Intel motherboard at a reasonable price I'm not sure how likely that is to happen. Maybe another 820 chipset board would work instead? I'm seeing a few similar candidates that are half the price of the Intel board. Another option I'm considering is building a similarly-specced PC inside and installing Windows 2000 for some Halo action.

All I've done so far is clean it up. Thoughts?

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1 hour ago, anode said:

Album: https://imgur.com/a/ptzp4Vl

 

Saw this pop up for sale locally and made the trip to pick it up. He said his father-in-law was an IT contractor, and apparently he originally got the case empty.

I got back home and opened it up to find the original case hardware kit sealed in its cardboard box, taped inside the drive bay next to a power cable in a bag. A silica gel pack was taped to the floor of the case. The IO connectors were zip tied together, tucked away in a corner. I am extra certain this case was never used, because the metal plate covering the DVD drive bay was not punched out.

My assumption is that Microsoft ordered cases from a supplier (says Yeou Chih on the inside) and hand-assembled all 50 units themselves in Redmond. I'm guessing that this case was one that either arrived damaged, or just never got used. If there were rumored to be 50 units, then I suppose this is unit 51. The date code on the back is 4-18-01.

I'm not entirely sure what to do with it. The inside is perfect, but the outside is a bit rough from kicking around in a basement. Ideally, I'd like to purchase the parts to remake the Alpha tower like N64 Freak did, but considering how difficult it is to find the Intel motherboard at a reasonable price I'm not sure how likely that is to happen. Maybe another 820 chipset board would work instead? I'm seeing a few similar candidates that are half the price of the Intel board. Another option I'm considering is building a similarly-specced PC inside and installing Windows 2000 for some Halo action.

All I've done so far is clean it up. Thoughts?

I don't have many suggestions, but I have been looking for one for my preservation. If you don't move forward with it, please consider letting me purchase it. 

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Nice find, its also a standard ATX case so you could build a current PC. It's a shame it didn't stay in the box it shipped in as so many of these cases are beat up. This one is in good shape compared to others I've seen. The shipping label on my boxed unit has the date 4-19-2001 and the new case inside was dated the same as yours, 4-18-01. Which is a late date for an Alpha tower and probably why it wasn't assembled as the BETA 1C units were currently shipping.

IMG_6366.JPG

IMG_6368.JPG

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5 hours ago, Syclopse said:

Nice find, its also a standard ATX case so you could build a current PC. It's a shame it didn't stay in the box it shipped in as so many of these cases are beat up. This one is in good shape compared to others I've seen. The shipping label on my boxed unit has the date 4-19-2001 and the new case inside was dated the same as yours, 4-18-01. Which is a late date for an Alpha tower and probably why it wasn't assembled as the BETA 1C units were currently shipping.

 

 

Oh wow that's amazing to see one new in box! I wonder how many more bare cases there are.

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The 50 number is incorrect like most numbers on the internet, in the press release by Microsoft they mentioned shipping a 1000 of these out to developers. The hard part was keeping them after being received as Microsoft wanted them shipped back before getting the actual development kits.

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  • 2 months later...

What a find. It would be difficult to find that on the internet, let alone locally and within driving distance... unless you're in the Redmond area. Lol. I've seen and heard of so many stories where people find rare Xbox stuff in the goodwills around Redmond or at garage sales in the area. Makes me miss living in western WA.

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21 hours ago, sh0rtlife said:

imo do nothing with it but use it as a display..beeing so rare id want to keeep it in as pristine condition as possible

I bought it from him. I have acquired all of the original parts from one of these and built it back up into an alpha II tower. It is fully functional and will be preserved as such for as long as I live. 

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12 hours ago, slycooper124 said:

hello, I built an frankenalpha recently and I was wondering if you would be interested in selling your case. this would really complete the look of my working dev kit. please let me know if your interested. thanks

He already sold it. 

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