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UnoCart - DIY article in excel magazine issue #4

diy multi-cart sd card cartridge

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#1 electrotrains OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Mar 29, 2017 6:03 AM

Hi All,

 

As some of you may have noticed, I've been writing a series of DIY Atari 8-bit hardware articles for Excel magazine.

 

For Issue #4 (due soon) I've contributed articles on both the Pixels Past 8k and 16k EPROM based cartridges, and also building instructions for my own latest design, the UnoCart.

 

Building your own UnoCart is not massively difficult and involves just a small amount of easy (thru-hole) soldering.

The key item is a STM32F407 Discovery board, which is readily available from most electronics suppliers for <£20. Using an off the shelf arduino-like board avoids almost all of the difficult soldering.

 

P1150331.jpg

 

The only hard to get item is a Atari cartridge breakout board (pictured). The article describes how you can get these made from the provided files yourself from a PCB manufacturer (a batch of 10 can be obtained for not much more than £10 from the cheap chinese suppliers), but I thought it would be easier if I offered some spare ones here. These are suitable for XL/XE machines.

 

P1150328.jpg

 

So, if anybody is planning to work through the project in Excel magazine (and wants to get ready in advance), then I've got about 8 cartridge breakout boards spare and available for £3 + P&P. Please reply here if you want one.

 

Can I ask that anybody asking for a board confirms they have already reserved their copy of issue #4 of Excel magazine, since I'd prefer these boards to go to readers of the magazine.

 

Robin



#2 Brentarian OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Mar 29, 2017 6:16 AM

I'll take one breakout board please. I reserved issue #4 yesterday.
Thanks,
Brent

#3 orpheuswaking OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Mar 29, 2017 6:57 AM

PM Incoming



#4 docertabum01 OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Mar 29, 2017 2:34 PM

Hello,
I'd like one board, too. I also rrserved #4 (#3 as well btw) I didnt know there are still mags related to little Atari:). I'll send address in PM. Thanks!

Sent from my Redmi Note 3 using Tapatalk

#5 orpheuswaking OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Mar 29, 2017 9:59 PM

I'm looking forward to issue #4 for sure. I'm loving all the modern magazines, Excel, Pro©, Eight Bit etc



#6 Stephen OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Mar 30, 2017 8:00 AM

If you have any left, I'd be interested.  Thanks for the link to Excel #4 - I ordered.  I have the other 3, great magazine.



#7 TheMontezuma OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Mar 30, 2017 8:53 AM

I can't wait for Excel #4 (already ordered) to read the UnoCart - DIY article :) Excel #1-3 are really great !

 

I assume that a Atari cartridge breakout board is the same that you already posted months ago,

but I wondered if I need exactly the STM32F407 Discovery board as on the picture?

Will the following boards work as well?

STM32F407VGT6

STM32F407VET6



#8 electrotrains OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Mar 30, 2017 9:52 AM

I can't wait for Excel #4 (already ordered) to read the UnoCart - DIY article :) Excel #1-3 are really great !

 

I assume that a Atari cartridge breakout board is the same that you already posted months ago,

but I wondered if I need exactly the STM32F407 Discovery board as on the picture?

Will the following boards work as well?

STM32F407VGT6

STM32F407VET6

 

The breakout board is a bit longer (as long as I could make it while keeping it in the cheapest price band for PCBs) so it will fit and work in an XL as well as an XE. Otherwise the same.

 

The two items you lists are simply the part numbers for the bare microcontrollers themselves.

The Discovery development board used breaks out all the pins to headers (so no soldering), and has all the decoupling capacitors and voltage regulator required to support the microcontroller.

 

EDIT - it also allows easy programming of the firmware via USB from a PC, so no other hardware required.

 

Robin


Edited by electrotrains, Thu Mar 30, 2017 9:53 AM.


#9 TheMontezuma OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Mar 30, 2017 11:44 AM

Sorry, here is an example link:

http://www.ebay.de/itm/272501793801


Edited by TheMontezuma, Thu Mar 30, 2017 11:45 AM.


#10 electrotrains OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Mar 30, 2017 12:27 PM

If you know what you are doing then any development board that has a STM32F407VET6 or VGT6 should work ok, as long as it breaks out the required pins, and can be powered by 5v from the cartridge port.

 

Obviously the article (and any support from me!) is limited to the "official" discovery board.

 

Robin


Edited by electrotrains, Thu Mar 30, 2017 12:28 PM.


#11 electrotrains OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Apr 5, 2017 8:58 AM

I've still got a few breakout boards left, if anyone else wants one. Postage to the USA (and Europe) is only £2. Issue #4 of Excel (with the DIY UnoCart article) is due out in the new few days.

 

A huge amount of work goes into each issue - so even if you don't fancy building a DIY UnoCart - please support this great new magazine by ordering your copy.

 

Robin


Edited by electrotrains, Wed Apr 5, 2017 8:59 AM.


#12 MacRorie OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Apr 5, 2017 3:39 PM

I've still got a few breakout boards left, if anyone else wants one. Postage to the USA (and Europe) is only £2. Issue #4 of Excel (with the DIY UnoCart article) is due out in the new few days.

 

A huge amount of work goes into each issue - so even if you don't fancy building a DIY UnoCart - please support this great new magazine by ordering your copy.

 

Robin

 

used it as an opportunity to order all four issues! 



#13 DrVenkman OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Apr 8, 2017 5:50 PM

Not directly related to the magazine orders, but if you're thinking of building one, I just wanted to say I received my Uno Cart today, spent a little while converting my collection of .bin files to .car versions and have been giving it a good set of tests - I haven't yet tried .xex or .atr compilations, but for cartridges it's working pretty darn well! I'm very pleased, especially given the incredibly reasonable price.

 

My only question has to do with the .html conversion tool hosted on Github ... aside from trial and error and basic common sense, is there any way to know what type of format to select when converting .bin files to .car? For those damnable OSS carts, at least the AtariWiki site has .car files already in a number of formats. :)

 

Anyway, thanks to Electrotrains (and FJC for his fantastic little firmware and file searching!) ... This is a great little cart.

 

Uno0.jpg

 

Uno1.jpg

 

Uno2.jpg

 

Uno4.jpg

 



#14 David_P OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Apr 20, 2017 9:18 PM

An earlier version of the breakout boards (v1.1) is also available from OSH Park.  http://atariage.com/...able/?p=3343361 



#15 Almerian OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Apr 21, 2017 6:09 PM

I would like a cartridge breakout board. I have reserved issue 4 of the Excel magazine.

And also ordered 1, 2 and 3  :) 



#16 Kyle22 OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Apr 22, 2017 6:57 PM

I use Altirra to make .car files so I can try them and make sure I have the car type correct.

Edit: spelling

Edited by Kyle22, Sat Apr 22, 2017 7:00 PM.


#17 malan23 OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Apr 22, 2017 7:56 PM

I just ordered all four issues!  



#18 xdslx OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Apr 24, 2017 4:44 AM

I would like to have one Atari cartridge breakout board , if there is any left. thank you



#19 flashjazzcat OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Apr 24, 2017 4:55 AM

Just to point out that Robin wrote the menu (including file search feature) for the Uno (I just provided the hacks to the soft-loaded OS, which is based on Altirra OS). He did a fine job too. :)


Edited by flashjazzcat, Mon Apr 24, 2017 4:56 AM.


#20 xdslx OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Apr 24, 2017 7:26 AM

how to delete a post . lol


Edited by xdslx, Mon Apr 24, 2017 7:35 AM.


#21 xdslx OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Apr 24, 2017 7:27 AM

.


Edited by xdslx, Mon Apr 24, 2017 7:30 AM.


#22 Chongo Chile OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed May 3, 2017 6:48 PM

Robin, i orden Printed and PDP Excell magazines Nº 1, 2, 3 and 4. So I am waiting them tho make your "uno" proyect!!.

 

Thanks four your contibution's to the Atari world.

 

Francisco



#23 xdslx OFFLINE  

xdslx

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Posted Fri May 5, 2017 3:35 AM

one thing to make clear , will we use the pin strips on the cartridge breakout  2,2,2,2,2 (2pinsx5)  or  5,5 (5 pins x2) ? 







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