Jump to content

Photo

Mattel Aquarius Multi-Cart


519 replies to this topic

#401 psquare75 OFFLINE  

psquare75

    Dragonstomper

  • 697 posts
  • Location:Assonet, MA

Posted Mon Aug 15, 2011 7:39 AM

This should be a sticky "How to run a homebrew project".

#402 jaybird3rd ONLINE  

jaybird3rd

    Quadrunner

  • 6,634 posts
  • Location:806.4616.0110

Posted Mon Aug 15, 2011 4:04 PM

Thank you very much. I'm proud of the results, but in the end, I suppose it's up to the users to decide how well everything came together.

Speaking of results, have a look at what I picked up at the print shop today ...

manuals.jpg

#403 GroovyBee OFFLINE  

GroovyBee

    7800 Developer

  • 7,612 posts
  • Busy bee!
  • Location:North, England

Posted Mon Aug 15, 2011 4:15 PM

:cool: Looking good there Jay.

#404 Aquaman OFFLINE  

Aquaman

    Chopper Commander

  • 217 posts
  • Location:the Netherlands

Posted Mon Aug 15, 2011 5:33 PM

Thank you very much. I'm proud of the results, but in the end, I suppose it's up to the users to decide how well everything came together.

Speaking of results, have a look at what I picked up at the print shop today ...

manuals.jpg

Wow, this looks really stunning!

#405 the-topdog OFFLINE  

the-topdog

    Stargunner

  • Topic Starter
  • 1,724 posts
  • Location:Washington State, USA

Posted Mon Aug 15, 2011 5:58 PM

Thank you very much. I'm proud of the results, but in the end, I suppose it's up to the users to decide how well everything came together.

Speaking of results, have a look at what I picked up at the print shop today ...


**passes out from the excitement**

#406 retrozoneorg OFFLINE  

retrozoneorg

    Chopper Commander

  • 123 posts
  • Trying to bring back 80's clothing
  • Location:uk

Posted Mon Aug 15, 2011 11:17 PM

The Manuals look great!
They look identical to the real thing..... THEY ARE THE REAL THING!!!!

This is the best homebrew product ever.

#407 gavvv OFFLINE  

gavvv

    Star Raider

  • 93 posts

Posted Tue Aug 16, 2011 1:20 PM

just making sure I didn't miss an actual 'for-reals' preorder as jay's gotten closer and closer :). can't miss this one :)


gavv

#408 revolutionika OFFLINE  

revolutionika

    Quadrunner

  • 9,488 posts
  • Location:GA

Posted Tue Aug 16, 2011 4:24 PM

now only if it had a box. :lust: :lust: :lust: :lust:

#409 jaybird3rd ONLINE  

jaybird3rd

    Quadrunner

  • 6,634 posts
  • Location:806.4616.0110

Posted Tue Aug 16, 2011 4:59 PM

now only if it had a box. :lust: :lust: :lust: :lust:

I'll get there someday, I'm sure. I'd really like to find a source of new cartridge shells first! As nice as it would be to have a box, it almost seems beside the point if I can only ship bare boards inside (once my limited stock of shells runs out).

#410 coyo5050 OFFLINE  

coyo5050

    Dragonstomper

  • 525 posts
  • Location:There is more to NY than NYC

Posted Tue Aug 16, 2011 6:00 PM

now only if it had a box. :lust: :lust: :lust: :lust:


omg box :) maybe someday. Manual look awesome!

#411 jaybird3rd ONLINE  

jaybird3rd

    Quadrunner

  • 6,634 posts
  • Location:806.4616.0110

Posted Sat Aug 20, 2011 10:21 PM

Well, this is the completion date that I established for myself a few weeks ago, and surely enough, I think I'm finally at the point where I can sign off on both the hardware and the software. I fixed a few lingering issues with the cartridge boards over the last two days, and in the process, I was able to simplify the design by ditching the "lockout chip" that I added last summer. That chip was a way of working around the original cartridge images which were causing "involuntary" bank switches with my hardware, but I was never very happy about it: it was an ugly hack, and it made the boards more difficult to build because of the tiny little chip I had to use. Instead, I went back and patched the cartridges which were causing the problems: BurgerTime and "BurgerTime Plus", Logo, Utopia, Space Speller, and Zero In.

I've tested the completed cartridge with four of my Aquarius computers so far, a mix of Mattel and Radofin machines with both S1 and S2 operating systems, and I'm very satisfied with it. Early next week, I'm going to start putting together the first of the cartridges, and I'll be getting in touch with my preorder customers soon afterward to work out the shipping arrangements. To a certain extent, I'll be relying on all of you to put the cartridge through its paces, and to uncover any remaining issues which might have escaped my notice. I'm really looking forward to hearing everyone's feedback and impressions, and in particular, I'm eager to hear from those Aquarius owners in Europe who will be using the Aquaricart with PAL computers (which I've been unable to obtain here in the USA). Every cartridge will be tested with multiple NTSC computers before I ship.

I'll be very busy through the remainder of this month, but I'll let everyone know as soon as I'm ready to make the Aquaricart available for general orders. Just a little longer, folks! :thumbsup:

#412 jaybird3rd ONLINE  

jaybird3rd

    Quadrunner

  • 6,634 posts
  • Location:806.4616.0110

Posted Sat Aug 20, 2011 10:46 PM

Heh ... I couldn't help but notice this, just a few minutes after I wrote my previous post:

aquaricartcrowd.png

I guess there are a few more people following this project than I thought!

:cool:

#413 cmart604 OFFLINE  

cmart604

    Quadrunner

  • 7,012 posts
  • Location:Vancouver

Posted Sun Aug 21, 2011 12:44 AM

Awesome news Jay, can't wait to get mine! :)

#414 the-topdog OFFLINE  

the-topdog

    Stargunner

  • Topic Starter
  • 1,724 posts
  • Location:Washington State, USA

Posted Sun Aug 21, 2011 1:15 AM

**does the happy Snoopy dance**

#415 revolutionika OFFLINE  

revolutionika

    Quadrunner

  • 9,488 posts
  • Location:GA

Posted Sun Aug 21, 2011 9:13 PM

Heh ... I couldn't help but notice this, just a few minutes after I wrote my previous post:

aquaricartcrowd.png

I guess there are a few more people following this project than I thought!

:cool:


That is actually alot of people at one time for this thread!

maybe once you open up orders you will be surprised at how many you have to make? :cool:

btw.....maybe you already said it, but how many total games are on this?

maybe a list?

(i dont feel like going through every message) :)

#416 jaybird3rd ONLINE  

jaybird3rd

    Quadrunner

  • 6,634 posts
  • Location:806.4616.0110

Posted Sun Aug 21, 2011 9:25 PM

btw.....maybe you already said it, but how many total games are on this?

maybe a list?

There are 23 cartridge images in all, twenty Mattel/Radofin originals and three "bonus" items. One of them, the Demo Cassette conversion, has six games in it. Here's the complete list:

AD&D: Treasure of Tarmin
Astrosmash
Biorhythms
BurgerTime
Chess
Demonstration Cartridge
Extended BASIC
FileForm
FinForm
Logo
Melody Chase
Mini Expander Diagnostic
Night Stalker
Shark! (an unfinished "Shark! Shark!" prototype)
Snafu
Space Speller
TRON Deadly Discs
Utopia
X10 Command Console
Zero In

BONUS: 1541 OS ROM (a modified Extended BASIC with some extra commands)
BONUS: Demonstration Cassette (a "sampler" with six mini-games converted from cassette format: Stalactites, Macho-Man, Torment, Cute Cubes, Alien Quest, and Mad Mould)
BONUS: "BurgerTime Plus" (BurgerTime with some fixes and a limit of 99 lives and peppers instead of 9)

#417 revolutionika OFFLINE  

revolutionika

    Quadrunner

  • 9,488 posts
  • Location:GA

Posted Sun Aug 21, 2011 10:01 PM

Nice!!

good to see the cassette games too, now if only you could port them to intv....:)

#418 jaybird3rd ONLINE  

jaybird3rd

    Quadrunner

  • 6,634 posts
  • Location:806.4616.0110

Posted Sun Aug 21, 2011 10:25 PM

Nice!!

good to see the cassette games too, now if only you could port them to intv....:)

Well, they're very simple mini-games, because they had to fit into the Aquarius's ~1.7K of built-in program RAM. When I started this project, I wanted to include some cassette conversions, and these were the ideal choice for two reasons: everyone can use them because they don't require expanded RAM, and they originally came with the Aquarius as a free pack-in.

I'm still considering a "second volume" of cassette-to-cartridge conversions, since there was a lot more third-party Aquarius software released on cassette, but we'll see how it goes.

#419 psquare75 OFFLINE  

psquare75

    Dragonstomper

  • 697 posts
  • Location:Assonet, MA

Posted Mon Aug 22, 2011 7:51 AM

If you need to gauge interest on a possible 'second volume'. I am indicating interest. :) :!:

#420 K6dude OFFLINE  

K6dude

    Combat Commando

  • 4 posts

Posted Wed Aug 24, 2011 8:44 AM

Hi Jay,

I will test the cart out in the UK as soon as I can after it (and the 32k ram card) arrives...looking forward to it very much.
Looks as if it is a very professional product Jay, well done for persevering...we believe in you!

On a slightly different tack...
Does anyone know of an assembler for the Aquarius?
Is there some sort of assembler/ROM reference too?

K6dude



Nice!!

good to see the cassette games too, now if only you could port them to intv....:)

Well, they're very simple mini-games, because they had to fit into the Aquarius's ~1.7K of built-in program RAM. When I started this project, I wanted to include some cassette conversions, and these were the ideal choice for two reasons: everyone can use them because they don't require expanded RAM, and they originally came with the Aquarius as a free pack-in.

I'm still considering a "second volume" of cassette-to-cartridge conversions, since there was a lot more third-party Aquarius software released on cassette, but we'll see how it goes.



#421 GroovyBee OFFLINE  

GroovyBee

    7800 Developer

  • 7,612 posts
  • Busy bee!
  • Location:North, England

Posted Wed Aug 24, 2011 8:46 AM

Does anyone know of an assembler for the Aquarius?


Its a sticky at the top of this forum :-

http://www.atariage....n-the-aquarius/

#422 jaybird3rd ONLINE  

jaybird3rd

    Quadrunner

  • 6,634 posts
  • Location:806.4616.0110

Posted Wed Aug 24, 2011 9:45 AM

Hi Jay,

I will test the cart out in the UK as soon as I can after it (and the 32k ram card) arrives...looking forward to it very much.
Looks as if it is a very professional product Jay, well done for persevering...we believe in you!

On a slightly different tack...
Does anyone know of an assembler for the Aquarius?
Is there some sort of assembler/ROM reference too?

K6dude

Thanks very much! It's great to have such generous support, and I'm very much looking forward to hearing the users' first impressions. I'll be sending an e-mail this evening to everyone who preordered, to ask for their updated shipping information.

I didn't have as many EPROM sockets on hand as I thought I did, so my building of the cartridge boards has been held up a bit until more arrive in a day or two. Strictly speaking, the EPROMs don't need to be socketed, but I think it would be a good idea for this first run in particular, since I might have to make changes to the software if the users find any issues with it.

In the meantime, here are the first five completed boards:

firstfive.jpg

#423 coyo5050 OFFLINE  

coyo5050

    Dragonstomper

  • 525 posts
  • Location:There is more to NY than NYC

Posted Wed Aug 24, 2011 10:50 AM

Thanks very much! It's great to have such generous support, and I'm very much looking forward to hearing the users' first impressions. I'll be sending an e-mail this evening to everyone who preordered, to ask for their updated shipping information.

I didn't have as many EPROM sockets as I thought I did, so my building of the cartridge boards has been held up a bit until more arrive in a day or two. Strictly speaking, the EPROMs don't need to be socketed, but I think it would be a good idea for this first run in particular, since I might have to make changes to the software if the users find any issues with it.

In the meantime, here are the first five completed boards:

firstfive.jpg


Nice to see blue instead of the boring green :)

#424 jaybird3rd ONLINE  

jaybird3rd

    Quadrunner

  • 6,634 posts
  • Location:806.4616.0110

Posted Wed Aug 24, 2011 10:52 AM

Nice to see blue instead of the boring green :)

Yes! I thought it would be a nice match for the blue/black/white color scheme of the Aquarius keyboard. I think it turned out very nicely (but then, I know I'm biased). :)

#425 Chuck D. Head OFFLINE  

Chuck D. Head

    River Patroller

  • 3,124 posts
  • Mod Mod Mod
  • Location:Woodland, WA

Posted Wed Aug 24, 2011 5:36 PM


In the meantime, here are the first five completed boards:


Damn! That's so hot!!




0 user(s) are browsing this forum

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users