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Please help with the ColecoVision Opgrade Module


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Poll: Help decide what the Opgrade Module should be (122 member(s) have cast votes)

Please choose the statement(s) which best describe your view about what the OM should be:

  1. OM is a pluggable module for the CV with minimum functionality, lowest possible price (26 votes [18.84%])

    Percentage of vote: 18.84%

  2. OM is a pluggable module with advanced functionality, like A/V outputs (44 votes [31.88%])

    Percentage of vote: 31.88%

  3. OM is a standalone device that can plays all the CV games, and also have the OM functionality (61 votes [44.20%])

    Percentage of vote: 44.20%

  4. Who cares about expansion modules? (4 votes [2.90%])

    Percentage of vote: 2.90%

  5. I have a better idea... (3 votes [2.17%])

    Percentage of vote: 2.17%

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#51 Pixelboy OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Aug 4, 2009 10:07 AM

I guess what I meant was, what part(s) of what that demo showed couldn't be done on a Megacart? If there was to be no module, then what would DK be like?

The game IS done on a MegaCart already. :) As I stated above, the original arcade game requires more than 1K of RAM, and the MegaCart cannot help with that (it only offers more data space inside the cartridge, which is completely distinct from RAM).

Without more RAM, Donkey Kong Arcade as it was shown in Eduardo's demo would simply not be possible. You may ask yourself why the arcade game requires so much RAM, and the simplest answer is that it's a memory hog. In the old days, when arcade games were developed, the programmers could do pretty much whatever they wanted and use whatever hardware was available at the time. In DK's case, Nintendo had access to 4K RAM chips, so they didn't optimize RAM usage at all. Almost 30 years later, we have to work with the choices that Nintendo made back then.

You mean that this is to be "emulated," like the Pac-Man games?

Ported, not emulated. But yes, it's the same story with Pac-Man Collection. Only Pac-Man and Ms. Pac-Man use only 1K of RAM, so no extra RAM is necessary.

The extra RAM cannot be added via the cartridge?

Nope. Well, actually, it's technically possible from what I've been told, but very difficult to do. It's much, much easier to add more RAM via the CV's expansion port.

#52 opcode OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Aug 4, 2009 11:03 AM

Hi Opcode,

I'm curious how much RAM is required for your upcoming projects?

Thanks,
5-11under


8KB I believe. But the OM offers 24KB, since it is cheaper to buy 32KB than 2 ICs of 8KB nowaday.

#53 opcode OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Aug 4, 2009 11:08 AM

DKA stands for Donkey Kong Arcade.

For the need of additionnal RAM , we already had a discussion about that in another thread.
(look in homebrew discussion section the thread on donkey kong arcade).

It is seems more ram is necessary to connect a fridge to allow mario to have a cold beer instead of pauline kiss at the end of the level. He runs too much so he'd prefer a beer than a kiss... :D (just kidding)


Yes, exactly. Mario wouldn't go beyond stage 1 if it wasn't for the cold beer... And nobody here wants DK with a single stage, right?

#54 nintendo OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Aug 5, 2009 7:31 AM

The ideal would be , to have a dual console that could in the same box play MSX cartridge and a Coleco. :) (even if you can not plug directly MSX cartridge, it would be go to be able to upload game as i suggest for coleco ones).

I know, i dream , but i'm sure you can do that ! :)

I suppose that can be done, as the source VHDL code for the MSX2+ is already available. Even a SG-1000 would be possible for the matter. My only concern is about diluting the OCCV into a multi-system box...


But if you could add MSX2+ and SG-1000 for close to the same cost as just OCCV only, then it's that much more appealing! And that much more worth paying for! I don't think it would "dilute" the OCCV, but just be considered an extra feature over the original CV. Just don't advertise or talk about the the OCCV as "multi-system" and you'll be fine.

#55 bgg OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Aug 5, 2009 7:41 AM

I voted for option 1. I like the idea of using the orginal CV and building upon it with the expansion module.

#56 opcode OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Aug 5, 2009 1:10 PM

So, what can we conclude from this poll so far?
I am actually not sure... Yesterday the preference for a new CV was clear. Today, not so much. Surprisingly, the more advanced OM did quite well. I thought most people were against the idea of expanding... Not so much it seems. A new CV is still #1, but the difference isn't that big. In the end I suppose people just want a way to play the existing games better, with better picture and sound, which is understandable...
What else can we conclude?
So, I don't know. It isn't clear to me. Another question is, supposing such an advanced module or CV-on-a-chip is created, will people really buy it, in the bad economy and all?
Perhaps we should do this way: it looks like there is interest on both a module and an OCCV. So how about, as many suggested here, we start with the module and go with the OCCV after that? The only question is how far should I go with the module? Should I keep it simple, inexpensive? The poll suggests people are generally willing to pay more for more features, the question is if they will stick to that once the module is released. What happens if such a module ends costing like $150?
Something that occurred me is that we could do parts of the module an option, like the A/V part for example. That would reduce the price of the basic module, but we could do it in such way that the module can be expanded to full features later. How about that? So we could define a small set of features and say that those features are obligatory, while the remaining will be optional, and games that use them should clearly state which options they support or require.
The things is, in my view $50 is good money. I don't want to release a quick fix and then a couple of years later I say "ok forget that, here is the new module/OCVC/whatever. From now on any new games will require it".
But I understand that it is hard to decide anything for sure without first seeing a working version of each component we have been discussing. So I think it is about time to start prototyping. Actually.... I started that yesterday. Here is the first component, as it appears in my schematics, the Expanded RAM. 24KB of RAM memory now fill the address space from 2000h to 7FFFh. I tested with games that require expanded RAM as well as regular CV games and all of them worked fine.
Next I will do the PSG + I/O ports. The CV PSG sucks, there, I said that. The AY-3-8910 is similar, but better on my areas. The main problem with the CV PSG is the limited sound frequency range it can generates. You cannot produce sound under 110Hz, and that is plain bad. People constantly complain about SIC and PMC sounding higher pitched than their arcade counterparts. So now you know why, but not anymore! Of course adding a new PSG doesn't mean that the old one will stop working, so now instead of 3 channels we will have 6! The other nice thing about the Ay-3-8910 is the two bidirectional parallel ports it offers. I see many applications for that, including new types of controllers, linking two CV together, or connecting a CV to a PC. The only thing I haven't completely decided yet is how I should assign the pins of each port. Initially I was planning to make all pins available to a single D25 connector. But then it occurred me it would be nice to have a few switches and push buttons on the OM, so we can receive some input from the user, like for example activating the BIOS GUI from inside a game to change parameters, activating cheat codes, etc. Or even pausing any game. I don't know, many possibilities.
So for the prototype I am going to assign both ports to simple pins on the board. Then we have a few months to decide how we are going to assign them in the final module.
Ok, so how about that? Sounds good? I will keep posting my progress here so we can discuss further every feature and, I don't know, evaluate together what we are going to use, what we don't want, new ideas, and so on... Once we have the module behind us, then we can start thinking about the OCCV. Again, I am going this direction because I saw that a lot of people here actually want the module. But please feel free to comment.

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#57 doubledown OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Aug 5, 2009 1:30 PM

I guess the features I'd be most interested in, would be whatever features you determine are necessary to play the kind of quality games you are trying to produce. If all that is necessary for games like DKA and others is extra RAM, than so be it. If you also say that you need a new sound IC, then add that too. I personally don't need any kind of audio/video outputs built-in because I can personally achieve composite video, S-video, component video, VGA and XGA on my own, so I wouldn't be interested in paying extra for audio/video outputs, but if they're there, than fine. But on the same token I can understand you not wanting to offer 30 different varieties of the module either. In my opinion, Eduardo, I think you and the brain-trust at OpCode should determine what you want in the module and just make it, and the people will buy it. If they don't, then the hell with them. I've modded a few consoles/controllers in my day and I'm rarely concerned what people "think" they want. I'll make the creation that I want, and if someone wants to buy it, (and they always do) then they'll buy it, and I'll make something new. I would assume though, that if you start producing games that require the module, than the cheaper you can sell it for, the more you will sell. Which in turn, will increase your customer base for any new module-dependant games.

#58 CV Gus OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Aug 5, 2009 1:35 PM

I'd keep the module relatively simple. You've already explained the part about the RAM needed for some games, so a CV add-on module would need that, plus extra "regular" memory?

The A/V ability might be a good idea, since I've seen televisions without regular RF input, or at least not easy. In this post-anaolg tv age, that might be more and more of a problem.

So- a plug-in, with the ability to play old CV games, A/V, extra memory, and RAM? If it could also boost the number of sprites/line/no flicker to 8, that would be nice.

For a version of DK like that, I'd buy it. But to be honest, if it's expensive, I could not, at least not for the forseeable future around here.

#59 Pixelboy OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Aug 5, 2009 2:50 PM

So, what can we conclude from this poll so far?
I am actually not sure... Yesterday the preference for a new CV was clear. Today, not so much. Surprisingly, the more advanced OM did quite well. I thought most people were against the idea of expanding... Not so much it seems. A new CV is still #1, but the difference isn't that big. In the end I suppose people just want a way to play the existing games better, with better picture and sound, which is understandable...

That's what I was saying earlier. When looking at the OM, some see the future games that will require it, some see the A/V output, but they rarely look at them both together. What we're really trying to do here is satisfy two completely different types of customers. The "absolute cheapest" solution involves ignoring the A/V output feature, so you have to decide if you're willing to disappoint that segment of our customer base, at least for the short term.

What else can we conclude? So, I don't know. It isn't clear to me. Another question is, supposing such an advanced module or CV-on-a-chip is created, will people really buy it, in the bad economy and all?

It's a leap of faith, that's for sure, but if the OCCV is sold as a simple PCB replacement, with the extra cost of a plastic casing removed, then it can be sold at the lowest price possible.

I mean, no matter what road we take (simplest OM, advanced OM, or OCCV) we're going to get the same result in the end: All future Opcode titles will require our new piece of hardware, so our customer base will be strictly limited to those who will buy and own this hardware. Do we really want to shoot ourselves in the foot by releasing something expensive?


Perhaps we should do this way: it looks like there is interest on both a module and an OCCV. So how about, as many suggested here, we start with the module and go with the OCCV after that? The only question is how far should I go with the module? Should I keep it simple, inexpensive? The poll suggests people are generally willing to pay more for more features, the question is if they will stick to that once the module is released. What happens if such a module ends costing like $150?

I think it would be good to make a guestimate at the costs, at this point. Right now, as the poll clearly demonstrates, everyone wants every feature in some form or another. Once you start putting a pricetag on each feature, many may look at their wallets and "adjust" their opinions accordingly. :)

Something that occurred me is that we could do parts of the module an option, like the A/V part for example. That would reduce the price of the basic module, but we could do it in such way that the module can be expanded to full features later. How about that? So we could define a small set of features and say that those features are obligatory, while the remaining will be optional, and games that use them should clearly state which options they support or require.

Sounds messy to me...

The things is, in my view $50 is good money. I don't want to release a quick fix and then a couple of years later I say "ok forget that, here is the new module/OCVC/whatever. From now on any new games will require it".

So then what you're really saying is that you're not willing to ditch the MegaRAM component. Ports of MSX MegaROM games such as Gradius, Maze of Galious and Penguin Adventure will require the MegaRAM, this is a given fact. The cheapest approach (offering only extra RAM and PSG) will not be able to run those games.

Initially I was planning to make all pins available to a single D25 connector. But then it occurred me it would be nice to have a few switches and push buttons on the OM, so we can receive some input from the user, like for example activating the BIOS GUI from inside a game to change parameters, activating cheat codes, etc. Or even pausing any game. I don't know, many possibilities.

Nice idea... :)

#60 purenergy OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Aug 5, 2009 9:45 PM

Your fine work will always be appreciated.
:)
Creating the Opgrade Module will bring new life to many ColecoVision fans, no matter what the final version may be.

#61 5-11under OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Aug 6, 2009 11:06 AM

Hi Opcode,

I'm curious how much RAM is required for your upcoming projects?

Thanks,
5-11under


8KB I believe. But the OM offers 24KB, since it is cheaper to buy 32KB than 2 ICs of 8KB nowaday.


Hi Opcode,

Is the OM RAM part of the regular memory map? If so, are you only using the 16K from 0x2000 to 0x5FFF, or are you somehow going beyond that, into the space mapped out by the 1K internal RAM? I'm just wondering if there's bus contention issues (and how easy it is to access the OM RAM)?

For those who would have to look it up, like I did, 0x0000-0x1FFF is BIOS ROM, 0x6000 to 0X7FFF is the 1K RAM mirrored a total of 8 times, and 0x8000 to 0xFFFF is cartridge ROM.

Thanks,
5-11under

#62 opcode OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Aug 6, 2009 12:09 PM

The CV original 1KB of RAM was replaced (for as long as the OM is plugged in) with 24KB. So now we have RAM from 2000h to 7FFFh. No bus contention issues (I can give more details if you want, it is just too technical to discuss here).
Accessing the expanded RAM is the same as accessing the original 1KB of RAM. However remember that RAM mapped into 6000h-7FFFh isn't mirrored anymore. Additionally, not all 24KB are available to programmers. 4KB are reserved to the BIOS XP system (5000h-5FFFh). Thus you shouldn't try to use that area. Anyway programmers still have 20KB of free RAM to use, which is, well, 20 times the original memory.
Talking about BIOS XP, with the OM plugged in, the original CV BIOS is also replaced by a 256KB flash memory IC. Part of that is the BIOS XP, which also includes a GUI (details about that soon). BTW, the BIOS XP is backward compatible with the old BIOS, so all games should work normally. The remaining flash memory is reserved for "save game". Format and usage will be revealed soon, but suffice to say for now that all access to the save RAM should be done thru the BIOS XP, which actually will make dealing with the save area pretty straightforward. Actually any access to the BIOS XP (not the regular BIOS, which is selected by default) should be done thru reserved access points inside the system RAM, because the BIOS XP is bank switched and write protected, so programmers shouldn't try to access it directly (there will be mechanisms to prevent a buggy game from corrupting the flash memory).
And since the BIOS XP is stored inside a flash memory, it can be updated as needed.
Initially the BIOS GUI should have the most basic functions to allow the user to manage the OM. Functions like "save game management", game font and "user management" should come with release 1. I plan to expand that with a cheat system and other stuffs later on.

And since we are talking about the OM, I just finished the layout for a PCB including expanded RAM, flash memory (BIOS XP/save game) and PSG+I/O. The final layout is pretty small actually, 5.3"x3.3". I will be sending the files to the PCB maker ASAP.

Once I receive the PCB, have it fully populated with ICs and tested I let you know. Phase 2 should add the MegaRAM. I should also decide how to assign the PSG I/O pins. Phase 3 should involve bug correction and space optimization by replacing some of the glue logic with PLDs. Phase 4 should then give us the final PCB. In between phase 3 and 4, we should decide which case we are going to use. We have a few options, and I will decide based on cost. For that I will check with both US and Brazilian case suppliers. If possible we will use a custom made case done thru tool-less process. If it is still too expensive we could try semi-custom options, then off-the-shelf.

And of course I should finish this thanking everybody for all the suggestions, votes, etc. I think it was very constructive and really helpful. So from now on letís keep focused and finish this damn thing in time for Christmas. Thanks guys!


Is the OM RAM part of the regular memory map? If so, are you only using the 16K from 0x2000 to 0x5FFF, or are you somehow going beyond that, into the space mapped out by the 1K internal RAM? I'm just wondering if there's bus contention issues (and how easy it is to access the OM RAM)?

For those who would have to look it up, like I did, 0x0000-0x1FFF is BIOS ROM, 0x6000 to 0X7FFF is the 1K RAM mirrored a total of 8 times, and 0x8000 to 0xFFFF is cartridge ROM.



#63 Bruce Tomlin OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Aug 6, 2009 5:52 PM

However remember that RAM mapped into 6000h-7FFFh isn't mirrored anymore.

That makes it easy to auto-detect the extra memory. I get the same situation when I use an ICE on a CV.

#64 opcode OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Aug 7, 2009 7:33 AM

Ok, with the PCB sent to manufacturing, I believe it is time to start thinking about the BIOS XP. I have a few ideas myself, but as they say, two (or more) heads think better than one. So I was imagining that perhaps I should invite all CV programmers, enthusiasts, etc, here to help me with the new BIOS. Some knowledge of the original BIOS is a plus, but not necessary. Background is programming is also a plus, but again not necessary. Anyone with good ideas is welcome. Basically what we are going to discuss is everything related to the flash memory, which is the new BIOS, backward compatibility, the GUI and the save game area (including format, functions, etc). So some creative stuff but mostly technical stuff. So again, everybody is welcome, but keep in mind that discussion can get nastily technical at some point.
I created a mailing list so everybody can join me and discuss. For all CV developers that plan maybe someday develop for the OM, or are just curious, that is the time to help and make the OM better for you. Thanks again!

Subscribe using this email: BIOSXP_consortium-subscribe@yahoogroups.com
Send messages using this one: BIOSXP_consortium@yahoogroups.com

#65 Greg2600 OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Aug 7, 2009 1:29 PM

WOW, so many different possibilities spoken of! First of all, I commend Eduardo for putting this out for discussion. I have a few thoughts, but what do I know?

1. I voted for 3) CV standalone, although I would think 2) is still worthwhile. Getting an AV mod as part of the deal is great, because the CV has the worst RF I've ever seen.

2. I saw doubledown make the point that the costs associated and potential lack of sales might not be nice for opcode games. I kind of agree with that, although if they made it with a replacement joystick, and a PSU that is durable, and AV Output, I think more people would buy than just a module. I know that would be big for me. I'm not a big fan of the MSX ports, as I have those games on NES usually. However, to have a CV with good video output and a good controller would be great for the CV games I have.

3. Then Eduardo later considered something that would replace the innards of the Colecovision, which is quite an interesting idea. In that case you still would have a "Colecovision, " though the feasibility might be low.

4. Eduardo mentioned he would use Compact Flash (CF) cards, which I love. Might that allow the sale of games digitally?

Edited by Greg2600, Fri Aug 7, 2009 1:42 PM.


#66 Murph74 OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Aug 7, 2009 3:41 PM

What about the idea of a new system that would work as a standalone, but also have a form factor that would fit into the original ColecoVision housing-- and using the 'expansion port' as the door access to the AV ports, the flash card reader, etc? (Or maybe a header-mount type jack to run to the existing back portholes of the CV case) It could be sold as a 'motherboard kit' to retrofit the CV housings out there No case considerations needed!)-- or offered in a basic casing for those without the CV housings. I think it would well serve the fan base to have a modern, dependable system to replace the aging and failing 27 year old hardware.

And I do, oddly enough, like the idea of a multi system that plays carts if the FPGA is used... not sure of the specs, but could you imagine a system with a single cart port playing multiple systems? Like popping an Atari cart in what looks like a stock CV and it plays!? (Again, not sure what the pinout specs are on the various similar systems, or what adapters may be usable-- but I can envision a hardware based MESS type system. And yes, I'm aware there are cart size/shape limitations too-- a redesigned new case could take that into consideration though) I mean, by my understanding if it's FPGA based, then it's essentially a very precise form of emulation, right? Might as well dress it to impress! Although, I'm still not much in favor of spicing systems up past their original retail specs or capabilities (like sound/video enhancements).

If just the memory module is done, is there a reason to go past the casing style of the Add-A-Halt module? And for that matter, could that functionality be included?

Just my ramblings once again...

#67 opcode OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Aug 7, 2009 6:20 PM

What about the idea of a new system that would work as a standalone, but also have a form factor that would fit into the original ColecoVision housing-- and using the 'expansion port' as the door access to the AV ports, the flash card reader, etc? (Or maybe a header-mount type jack to run to the existing back portholes of the CV case) It could be sold as a 'motherboard kit' to retrofit the CV housings out there No case considerations needed!)-- or offered in a basic casing for those without the CV housings. I think it would well serve the fan base to have a modern, dependable system to replace the aging and failing 27 year old hardware.


What I have decided is to go ahead with the expansion module this year, including only what I need for my games.
Then next year, once the OM is released, I can start thinking about the 1chipCV. As I said I bought the FPGA dev kit, there is already an implementation of CV using FPGA, so I am good to go.

And I do, oddly enough, like the idea of a multi system that plays carts if the FPGA is used... not sure of the specs, but could you imagine a system with a single cart port playing multiple systems? Like popping an Atari cart in what looks like a stock CV and it plays!? (Again, not sure what the pinout specs are on the various similar systems, or what adapters may be usable-- but I can envision a hardware based MESS type system. And yes, I'm aware there are cart size/shape limitations too-- a redesigned new case could take that into consideration though) I mean, by my understanding if it's FPGA based, then it's essentially a very precise form of emulation, right? Might as well dress it to impress! Although, I'm still not much in favor of spicing systems up past their original retail specs or capabilities (like sound/video enhancements).

Actually FPGA is hardware simulation. That means that while a multi system with single cartridge slot would be possible, that would require a switch to select the desired system. Supposing the user forget to change the system and plug the wrong cartridge for the selected system type, that would damage the cartridge and or the system. Not a good idea.
Personally I think the idea of a multi system is cool, however that would require too many resources to produce, so I wouldn't go that way. I prefer to concentrate on a single system, which is the CV.

If just the memory module is done, is there a reason to go past the casing style of the Add-A-Halt module? And for that matter, could that functionality be included?


I think that was done using a single switch connected to the wait or bus request line. Pretty easy to do. However that has the inconvenient of not muting the sound, so a better solution would be to use the new BIOS XP to implement pause with all games.
That's why I asked help with the BIOS, but so far nobody shown interest. I guess it is easier to have someone doing the hard work then enjoying it when it is finished.

1. I voted for 3) CV standalone, although I would think 2) is still worthwhile. Getting an AV mod as part of the deal is great, because the CV has the worst RF I've ever seen.

I completely agree, however there are some points to take into account: To do that I need a VDP inside the module. Using the TMS9918 or variations is an option, however those ICs are kind of hard to find nowadays. Other thing is that they cannot produce RGB video output, so I cannot use a modern video encoder, which means less-than-stellar video output. Finally, supposing one already has a modded CV with A/V outs. The added cost of a module with A/V outs wouldn't make sense for that person. Supposing we go with the V9958. Again, you can buy it from China, but then you would need to order dozens of them, lots of money required. And in a year or two the ICs could disappear completely, nobody knows. And again, if one already has a modded CV...
So I think it is a better idea to save that for the 1chipCV, because the video can be produced using FPGA with the best possible picture quality. The other thing I realized reading all the posts is that we have two kinds of mentality towards the module: people who want to play the new games the module allows, and people who just want to play regular CV games on a more reliable machine. For the later I think the 1chipCV is a better option, so that is why I am focusing on just the features I need for the new games with the module.

4. Eduardo mentioned he would use Compact Flash (CF) cards, which I love. Might that allow the sale of games digitally?


It could, but again, I decided to not include that with the pluggable module. CF can wait till the 1chipCV is made, since it isn't essential for any game.
What I am trying to do now is to be practical considering the input I got here. Since a lot of people shown interest on a 1chipCV, I think some of the features make more sense with that option, so such features can wait. For now I will be focusing only on features that are essential for the games I have in mind.

I apologize if I am frustrating some of you here. From the poll it's clear that I cannot make everybody happy. What I am trying to do now is to focus on the minimal features with the Opgrade Module and have it finished by the end of year. The more advanced features can wait till the 1chipCV that I hope to start once the OM is done and released.

Edited by opcode, Fri Aug 7, 2009 6:23 PM.


#68 Murph74 OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Aug 7, 2009 11:34 PM

I apologize if I am frustrating some of you here. From the poll it's clear that I cannot make everybody happy. What I am trying to do now is to focus on the minimal features with the Opgrade Module and have it finished by the end of year. The more advanced features can wait till the 1chipCV that I hope to start once the OM is done and released.


Didn't the 1chipCV win the poll? :) No matter-- whatever you make I'm sure will be excellent.

From a marketing point of view, there is an argument to be made that the module coming out alone could hurt sales of an eventual 1chipCV. I'd think a pretty significant number of gamers would opt to have just the module instead of the 1chipCV if it's not needed. The problem with that is, what do they do when it IS needed, and it's not been produced?

I'm also not sure that by taking into consideration the group who has AV mods already that you are properly analyzing your potential market. By doing that, I believe you're losing a significantly larger market that hasn't/can't/won't mod their original CV, or doesn't even have an original CV to mod. Those who have already modded their systems are obviously, IMO, 'hardcore' enough to appreciate the new 1chipCV and buy it as well if that is the only option to play the Expanded RAM games.

If it becomes a roughly $50 to even $80 difference from the Opcode Module to the 1chipCV system, I'd still urge further consideration if possible! But as I said, I'll support your efforts with my $$ (purchases!) no matter what direction you ultimately go it.

Just more late night thoughts. :)

#69 youki OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Aug 8, 2009 4:46 AM

I'm ready to pay 150-200$ for a 1chipCV.

and 1ChipCV win the poll.!!!

#70 opcode OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Aug 8, 2009 7:17 AM

And when I thought I had everything figured out....
It isn't clear to me that 1chipCV won the poll. It seemed like that in day 1, but after that more people voted for a module (when options 1 and 2 are combined) than for a standalone new CV. As I said, I can go any direction you guys want, it is just not clear... At least a couple of people here suggested we had a simple module first then a more complete 1CCV, and that sounded like a good idea to me. But now I see that some of you absolutely prefer the 1CCV and doesn't care about a module. So what should I do? New poll? I don't know if I can add a new question for the existing poll, like "which order do you prefer the modules released?"
1 - I am interested on the new standalone 1chipCV (OCCV) only
2 - I prefer the OCCV first then a simple module so I can also use my regular CV for new games too
3 - I prefer a simple module first so we can play the new games ASAP, then an OCCV later
4 - I am interested on a plug-in module only

However please keep in mind that the #1 goal of this project is to create the necessary platform for my new games. Among the people voting for a 1CCV there is a percentage that simply want a platform to play existing games, which is perfectly fine. However, supposing 300 people say they want to buy a 1CCV while just 50 say they want the module. Since the only reason for the module is to play the new games, I know that those 50 units are potential buyers of new games. However I cannot be sure of that with the 1CCV; it could be the same 50 people, plus 250 that just want to play regular games. You see what I am trying to mean? We would be delaying the new games (in case we go with the 1CCV) for the sake of people that don't care about them in the first place... BTW, please keep in mind that a OCCV project would take a couple of years based on similar projects I have seen...

#71 youki OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Aug 8, 2009 7:56 AM

It isn't clear to me that 1chipCV won the poll.


OM is a pluggable module for the CV with minimum functionality, lowest possible price [ 16 ] [20.51%]
OM is a pluggable module with advanced functionality, like A/V outputs [ 25 ] [32.05%]
OM is a standalone device that can plays all the CV games, and also have the OM functionality [ 33 ] [42.31%]

Doing a one chipCv could increase the park of colecovision , because unfortunaly Colecovision console becomes tired and it is hard to make them repair.

With a bigger park of colecovision, you will be able to sell more game. Lot of won't care if the game will use more ram or not or else they will just buy a new game for their console.

For instance, i don't think i will buy your expansion module and so not your games (despite the fact i huge fan of donkeykong). I don't want plug something in my coleco that is already tired and enough big like that.

But if you do a oneCHipCV in a nice designed case that use standard alimentation and plug on modern tV , and if you include your enhancement . For sure i will buy your console and some of your games.(however surely not MSX port , but DKA for sure).
And i could even program some using your new features.

If you do the oneChipCV with the enhancement, i will buy also.

My dream would be to have a little cube (like a gamecube even smaller) that would be a coleco, i can transport where i want .

#72 opcode OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Aug 8, 2009 10:52 AM

1chipCV running on my DE1...

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#73 youki OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Aug 8, 2009 11:52 AM

I want That!!!! :)

#74 cybercylon OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Aug 8, 2009 2:46 PM

And when I thought I had everything figured out....
It isn't clear to me that 1chipCV won the poll. It seemed like that in day 1, but after that more people voted for a module (when options 1 and 2 are combined) than for a standalone new CV. As I said, I can go any direction you guys want, it is just not clear... At least a couple of people here suggested we had a simple module first then a more complete 1CCV, and that sounded like a good idea to me. But now I see that some of you absolutely prefer the 1CCV and doesn't care about a module. So what should I do? New poll? I don't know if I can add a new question for the existing poll, like "which order do you prefer the modules released?"
1 - I am interested on the new standalone 1chipCV (OCCV) only
2 - I prefer the OCCV first then a simple module so I can also use my regular CV for new games too
3 - I prefer a simple module first so we can play the new games ASAP, then an OCCV later
4 - I am interested on a plug-in module only....


I can understand how these things can go, and you can end up waffling for ever. You are the boss, and I think we will be happy with whatever you decide.

After thinking about it, my opinion has changed a bit.

If you "combine" standalone with upgrade with more features, that is a solid number right there. Almost seems like the majority would like to see some extra features. You could make an upgrade with some more features. Would that be ready by x-mas? Can enough be made so someone can buy one later?

Then a standalone can come later, but has the same features of original CV plus upgrades. That way, people that bought the upgrade won't feel like they missed much. But you did say going the standalone route would take much longer, so I guess if it is standalone only, it would depend on how long you want people to wait for the games.

#75 Murph74 OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Aug 8, 2009 11:50 PM

2 - I prefer the OCCV first then a simple module so I can also use my regular CV for new games too

That is if I have to choose one of those options. I personally think BOTH is a doomed proposition. I think it has to be one or the other. And I'm the dreamer type and like to think BIG. :) I'm concerned that if you do both, you may wind up like the Adam with the Standalone and the Exp Module both taking up space in the marketplace and both ultimately not meeting their goals.

I'm kind of torn overall here, though. The basic module for DKA and extra Ram is fine-- but I do believe that you would still be doing yourself the MOST good by continuing with the OCCV as soon as possible. You increase output functionality for those who want to play CV on their modern TV's and can't, won't or simply don't have the technical savvy or confidence to mod their CV. You also open up the market to sell your games to people who don't yet have a CV, or a fully working one. Or those who HAD one and are scared of aging hardware. If you have a cartridge slot on the unit, you're golden IMO. I still like the idea of the Motherboard being reverse-compatible with the original CV case, too!

I don't know how many of the OCCV's you could sell, but my guess would be 200 would go almost instantly-- especially if it were like 1982 again, and DKA was packed in. :) And while pretty retail boxes and such are awesome, I'm not sure it would even matter to those that know, knew, and loved the CV in the 80's.

I have to admit, though-- the idea of a 'couple of years' scares me. I know 'right now' isn't possible, but anything could happen over a 'couple of years'. :)

Is this maybe something Curt Vendel could help out with or chime in on to make a 1CCV a reality sooner? Sorry I can't be of more assistance, but I'm a marketing guy, not a technical guy. lol

Edited by Murph74, Sat Aug 8, 2009 11:52 PM.





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