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AtariVox is coming

Posted by mos6507, 31 October 2009 · 1,276 views

atarivox
This is the first batch of 25 AtariVox boards earmarked for the 25th anniversary 7800 project.Posted ImageAll the boards are assembled. They still need to be individually tested, and I am 4 Speakjets shy. Also, I'm troubleshooting a custom startup speech line.These are using the new PCB that Richard designed that I'm calling "AtariVox+" The + part is the ability to switch to VecVox or VecVoice mode. However, since these are meant to be installed internally in 7800s, I am hardwiring it for AtariVox.Once these are done, the real AtariVox boards will get built. The AtariVox+ boards will all be black. The green ones you see here were the initial run of 20 boards that Richard made before handing it over to me.More details to follow.




Nice work - I'm assuming those two chips (apart from the Speakjet) are an EEPROM and a small amplifier? What is the third surface-mounted chip on the black PCBs - is it something for the Vectrex?

Chris
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The pesky surface-mount chip is a PIC. You'd want to ask Richard how the PIC actually enables the AtariVox to behave like a VecVox or a VecVoice.The PCB has barely enough space to do what it's doing here. That's why it's a SMD PIC instead of a DIP.
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You'd want to ask Richard how the PIC actually enables the AtariVox to behave like a VecVox or a VecVoice

VecVox mode - it changes baud rates, 9600 from the Vectrex to 19200 into the SpeakJet.VecVoice mode - is emulating the SPO256 speech chip used in the original.
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You'd want to ask Richard how the PIC actually enables the AtariVox to behave like a VecVox or a VecVoice


VecVox mode - it changes baud rates, 9600 from the Vectrex to 19200 into the SpeakJet.
VecVoice mode - is emulating the SPO256 speech chip used in the original.


Thanks - I didn't realise it was emulating another chip. Can the PIC be programmed through the Atari joystick port, or is the programming fixed?

Chris
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There is a 10-pin header that is for in-circuit programming of the PIC. That header is really expensive on Digikey so I didn't order it but I found a cheaper supplier. I'm having a really hard time getting the PIC wired in reliably and I now have a stack of boards that may or may not be redeemable with a PIC firmware upgrade. This is why I didn't want to formally announce something. I want to start consistently building working units and so far the only ones that are coming out functional are the hardwired AtariVox ones without the PIC.
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There is a 10-pin header that is for in-circuit programming of the PIC. That header is really expensive on Digikey so I didn't order it but I found a cheaper supplier. I'm having a really hard time getting the PIC wired in reliably and I now have a stack of boards that may or may not be redeemable with a PIC firmware upgrade. This is why I didn't want to formally announce something. I want to start consistently building working units and so far the only ones that are coming out functional are the hardwired AtariVox ones without the PIC.


Surface mount soldering can be a real pain. Batari might have some tips as he has soldered over 50 Harmony carts now. I think he uses the drag soldering technique?

Chris
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