DarkLord, on Mon Jan 9, 2012 1:29 AM, said:
The Mega STe, TT, and Falcon all have sockets for the FPUs. I don't think the Mega ST or 1040 STe does...not without some
kind of adaptor board.
I had a 1200 once - it didn't have a socket for a FPU either.
That sucks. The STe line should've had it...then again...some might say they should've had a 68020 too!
What about the STacy, DarkLord?
And it is disappointing the A1200 doesn't have such a slot especially since it's a contemporary of the Falcon. I've been looking at boards for the A500 [since A500s go for cheap in MegWhitmanLand] but all the CPU upgrade boards so far haven't had FPU sockets.
Separately, it seems like Kickstart switcher boards in Amigaville are more common than TOS switchers ever were in Atariland. I can't remember anyone from my rather large Atari user's group having any TOS switchers back in the day. Then again, only a few people ever bothered upgrading to Rainbow TOS or TOS 2.6...they seemed far more amazed with NeoDesk which didn't really appeal to me back then...had it on the Falcon but GEM/TOS 4.0x was decent enough...
Rybags, on Mon Jan 9, 2012 1:38 AM, said:
None of the standard form ST/e has provision for it AFAIK.
And I thought for sure the MegaST had a slot for the 68881 because I thought I'd remembered much talk about it and the ads for Mark Williams C certainly hyped how it supported it. Even some summaries I read on the net prior to creating this thread say the MegaST does have a slot.
moulinaie, on Wed Jan 11, 2012 6:07 AM, said:
I don't think that any game will use the FPU. So you won't get any extra power with it.
Most compilers can use it (they detect its presence and use the correct maths routines with our without maths FPU).
If you are a programmer, that can be useful for you.
If you use some software with heavy maths computations (POV for example), this can help too.
For more infos, you can visit my page about the Kronos benchmark software, you'll find there a link to FPU tests:
Nice web page.
I think I noticed that a multimedia player for the Falcon supports the 68882. I would've figured the MP3 portion would mainly use the Motorola DSP in the Falcon instead. Funny how a chip that was a contributing factor to the NeXT Cube's expense - a few years before the Falcon debuted - could now be implemented in Apple's cheap iPod Shuffles...
Ato, on Wed Jan 11, 2012 6:08 PM, said:
Neither the ST models nor the plain STE models nor the Mega ST - caveat: not the Mega STE models! - would come with a plain socket for any of the MC68881/2. In order to provide hardware FPU support to hose models, they would have to be upgraded with the Atari FPU card. - Or whatever its name is. - Anyway, the Atari FPU upgrade card has one major disadvantage. It cannot be programmed directly, i.e. by using proper FPU mnemonics, but one has to program it by writing all the commands and data into memory mapped registers which obviously sucks big time due to the timing (ROM port!) and the usability constraints. But since an MC68882@32 MHz is available for just US$10 or max. US$15 on "YouKnowWhere", there is no reason to not get one. And the general assumption is correct, that most Atari software does not make use of it, since, at the time of the development of most of the software, those FPUs were just (expletive omitted) expensive and hence not available to the developers.
Did Atari actually market such a card themselves? In the US or Europe only? If they had, it would've been nice had they included a provision for the BLiTTER on it back in 87...
Such a shame those co-processors were so expensive back then [$300 plus if I recall correctly]. I guess a lot of publishers looked at it from the chicken-and-the-egg proposition. Gaming certainly could've been helped with them, then again, I don't recall PC gaming really taking advantage of FPU until the 386DX era...
I've seen a *new* 68882 for $15 at "YouKnowWhere" but I haven't seen any for $10. I'd definitely like a PM if you know of a place...
As I posted before, this is now a case of general principle too since I don't like the idea of gold hoarders buying up these uncommon FPUs for their gold value. They can do that to ultra-common Intel chips all they want to but don't touch these chips that Atarians, Amigans, and Classic Mac fans can actually use to this day...
One thing I did see on Amiga boards is some fascination with crystal oscillators. Not much explanation on them; I take it they may be used for overclocking...
Edited by Lynxpro, Wed Jan 11, 2012 10:34 PM.