Al Bloom had a lightning strike next to his house a couple years
back. It entered the phone line, fried the modem, jumped to the
computer and fried the mother board, then fried the hard disk. Ten or
fifteen bucks for a modem spike protector is cheap insurance. You can
kill two birds with one stone if your computer's surge protector has
a built-in modem protector. The good ones often do.
There is nothing odd about the Apple
/// that requires a particular modem. Modems that work with other
computers will probably work with the Apple ///. However, some modems
have switches that must be set in a particular way in order to work
with an Apple ///. I recommend that you first try to use the modem
the way it is. If it works, copy down how the switches are setup. It
may or may not matter, but -- if it does matter -- it's awfully nice
to have a written record of what works.
The MultiTech modem I have seems to
work with the Apple ///
communication programs using standard modem switch settings. The ADC
modem I have, on the other hand, will not work with the Apple ///
until I alter two of the switches to be the opposite of standard. The
two switches are:
(1)Switch #8: Ignore RS-232 DTR line,
TR light always on The above is the "standard" setting,
I flip it to the other position to use the modem with
the Apple ///.
#10:Response to Carrier Detect The above is the default, I flip it
to the opposite position for the Apple ///.
Using ACCESS /// I can tell if the
modem is set up right by noticing whether the characters I type are
shown on the screen as I type them. If not, I change the switches
until the characters appear.
Dave O. uses a Zoom 14,400 modem,
which can be set in software to lower speeds. It is more than the ///
really needs, especially since none of our com programs have setting
higher than 9600. BUT for uploading files quickly, it IS nice to
have. Also, the modem is transportable to other computers in the
In the realm of cabling, what you
want is a straight RS232 modem cable. A modem cable is simply a
straight pin to pin cable, nothing fancy. The modem only uses a few
of the pins, so some cables only connect those pins. If you get a
cable that connects only a few the pins, it will probably work fine.
However, a cable with all 25 pins wired is sure to work.
There are some minimal concerns
related to connecting the cable to your equipment. Make sure the
cable's plugs fit your RS232 connectors at the computer end and at
the modem end. IBM PC's and XT's and the like come with male/female
connectors because the computer serial port plug is male.