RetroCode UK

Published Date Aug 13, 2020 Reading Time ~2 minutes RSS Feed Amiga Retro Eletronics

Amiga 1200 Heimdall BiFrost

Although it may appear pointless at first glance, the BiFrost is an absolutely awesome replacement for the Amiga’s LEDs.

Superficially it is a plug-in replacement for the A1200’s power, HDD and floppy drive LEDs. One immediate advantage I noticed is that the cable plugs into the motherboard and the lid, which means that you can just unplug it easily to remove the top part of the case completely, rather than having to dig under the keyboard to extract the plug from there.

Even for this basic advantage, and for the smoother looking lights, the kit is worthwhile.

However, there were some more treasures inside the box. Aside from a pack of “Bilar Original” which I’ve never had before, there are a couple of other optional add-ons.

First of all is an additional cable with a clip on one side to attach to (almost) any +5v pin on the Amiga (as long as it shares a common ground with the board). There are good instructions on the site to help through this.. Once installed, the additional power allows the LEDs to be brighter… much brighter! (although there are stark warnings not to increase the brightness for too long as it ends up overdriving the LEDs a little more than they are designed for.

Next there is a PCMCIA indicator - actually there is the option for 2 extra LED indicators, although there are additional components to install on the Amiga’s motherboard to support PCMCIA. Apparently the board’s design included support for this feature, but cost cutting removed it from the final design. The components supplied are tiny so at least an intermediate level of soldering skill is going to be necessary for this. It’s something I’d like to add, but I may wait a few months more before attempting this.

Finally there is an optional caps-lock indicator, which is really cool. Again I haven’t installed this as it looks like it could be quite a fiddly process to install it in to the keyboard, but it is a very nice option to have. Apparently this isn’t usually sold together with the BiFrost, and is available as a separate add-on.

Unboxed with sweets! amiga-heimdall-bifrost-package_IMG_20200730_1528146.jpg

All the optional extras, and the original LEDs Optional extras

Cable for additional power attached in position on pin 20 Clip to attach the additional power cable in position

View of the LEDs with purple and blue. Close up with blue and purple lights

View of the LEDs with purple and red. Close up of purple and red LEDs

The main Heimdall Bifrost module in the case top. The module, screwed in place