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Bought My First Atari Computer, Few ROOKIE Questions


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#1 Atari800Xl OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Nov 7, 2017 3:24 PM

Hi Everyone,

I've wanted an Atari Computer for a very long time, and the other day I was walking through the video game store and they had one that came in on a trade. I picked up an 800 XL from the store then got a NOS 1010 Tape Drive, and 2 1050 Disk Drives, along with a few games from eBay. I had a few questions. Right now I am using a cassette adapter to play games from my PC through the tape drive. But most files are ATR's. Would I be able to load an ATR image on an emulator then save it to a CAS image? I know I could open a disk image on my real C64 and save it to tape or Vice versa, is the same possible on my Atari? I plan to buy SIO2USB eventually, but until then could I do that?  I have tons of blank 5 1/4's so I wanted to just save the images to disk on my Atari after.

 

I remember reading something back around the late 90's that you could build an adapter to attach to the Atari and use a PC disk drive for storage. Is that idea still around? Or are we all just using SIO2USB now?

 

Also are there any Atari Printers that are usable today? Id like something with color or at least capable of graphics? Unfortunately I threw away my old Panasonic KXP2123 printer because I couldn't get color or black and white ribbons anymore. 

 

Is there a real version of Pong (video Olympics) for the computers? And I found space invaders the other night but it didn't have the little shields you hide behind in the bottom of the screen is that just a rewrite for the computers?



#2 slx OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Nov 7, 2017 4:16 PM

SIO2PC is a cable that allows you to attach your Atari to the serial port of a PC. This can be used via an FTDI-"powered" RS-232 to USB adapter and there are also designs that have this converter built in and are called either SIO2PC-USB or SIO2USB, with the latter term conflicting with a dedicated SIO2USB device allowing to use USB storage media via SIO.

 

Some (?) of these cables also allow a "10502PC" mode where you can hook up you 1050 directly to a PC. There are some recent threads around here about this. The software selection for this is more limited than for SIO2PC.

 

Depending on you soldering dexterity there is a thread about a homemade SIO2PC board. If you want to buy prepaid, there are several vendors who sell this, look for atarimax, atari8warez or Lotharek.

 

AFAIK there is no official Atari Pong for the 8-bits but there are some Pong variants on Atarimania.

 

Atarimania also lists plenty of Space Invaders versions, both Atari Invaders and Deluxe Invaders have shields.

 

There are Atari branded printers but there never was a really good one, as they usually have a 5x7 dot matrix. Only some models have SIO plugs, for those with parallel ports you need a SIO to Centronics interface. Using such an interface you can use pretty much any Epson compatible printer.

 

The Atari 1027 printers require a replacement print head, the 1020 printer plotters need special "pens" that are hard to come by.

 

Converting ATRs to CAS may work but only with those ATRs that do a single-stage boot. Everything that uses a loader, multiple files or loading e.g. levels from disk won't.



#3 _The Doctor__ OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Nov 7, 2017 4:39 PM

Atari XMM801 / SMM804 are fine I used an XMM constantly for over ten years, never let me down... 825 before that was fine for draft prints only, XDM 121 perfectly fine... but for putting out tons of stuff Epson was the go to.... paper handling superb... there were a number of printer and interfaces some did Atascii some didn't and well some of burned proms to add that in.. some people wrote G: and P: drivers to print out the graphics modes and texts...

 

Using APE or Respeqt 4 you can access pc hard drive directly, and the attached printer on the x86m machine, some people use an Atari 850, P:R: connection, Black Box, MIO, AXIOM printer adapter, GE and many others made printer adapters... one such AXIOM adapter was recently canabalized that the owner said he didn't have a buyer for... he may or may not be able to put it back together if you would be interested or not....

 

I partial to Roklan Deluxe invaders, but I am biased :)

 

my brain is hazy but didn't someone do pong for us in the not so distant past? Just for the heck of it?

 

http://a8.fandal.cz/...butt_details_x=

 

maybe one of those do it for you, there are many more here there and wherever

 

some peeps use the parallel versions of HP laserjets on the 8 bits also


Edited by _The Doctor__, Tue Nov 7, 2017 4:50 PM.


#4 bbking67 OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Nov 7, 2017 6:11 PM

The adapter that allows PC floppy drives is the ATR8000... use of SCSI disks was achieved (back in the day) with an ICD Multi I/O or CSS Black Box.

 

You cant easily convert from disk image to tape (why would you want to if you have floppy drives)?  I'd recommend getting a modern device for storage there are many options like SIO2SD.  SIO2SD is exceptionally straightforward and requires to modifications to the system.

 

I don't think there ever was an official Atari Pong for the system... 

 

The atari can use Epson compatible printers with an RS232 adapter, so that makes things far more flexible.  Atari branded printers are rare and some are also RS232.

 

Good luck, and you'll to know how to boot things properly (disable BASIC by holding OPTION at boot time for example).



#5 _The Doctor__ OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Nov 7, 2017 7:05 PM

and some are parallel printers from Atari ;)  and don't forget the centronics 737 though same as 825



#6 _The Doctor__ OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Nov 7, 2017 7:23 PM

MAXXI and BB flop board in addition to atr8000 also don't forget critical connection for older cp/m machine etc....



#7 Atari800Xl OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Nov 7, 2017 8:56 PM

Looks like copying disk images to cassette images is a lot tougher on an Atari than a Commodore. I was hoping to get away with not SIO2USB for a while , but I cant find any software that lets you load a disk and save it to tape. If I could get it to tape, then I could play it onto my Atari and then save it to a DIsk. 

 

Does the Atari plotter make good print shop type things?  Im on the waiting list for a 1027 head for text. I was trying to keep everything Atari, but it maybe worth getting the adapter and running an epson printer.



#8 Swami OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Nov 7, 2017 9:20 PM

Hi Everyone,

I've wanted an Atari Computer for a very long time, and the other day I was walking through the video game store and they had one that came in on a trade. I picked up an 800 XL from the store then got a NOS 1010 Tape Drive, and 2 1050 Disk Drives, along with a few games from eBay. I had a few questions. Right now I am using a cassette adapter to play games from my PC through the tape drive. But most files are ATR's. Would I be able to load an ATR image on an emulator then save it to a CAS image? I know I could open a disk image on my real C64 and save it to tape or Vice versa, is the same possible on my Atari? I plan to buy SIO2USB eventually, but until then could I do that?  I have tons of blank 5 1/4's so I wanted to just save the images to disk on my Atari after.

 

I remember reading something back around the late 90's that you could build an adapter to attach to the Atari and use a PC disk drive for storage. Is that idea still around? Or are we all just using SIO2USB now?

 

Also are there any Atari Printers that are usable today? Id like something with color or at least capable of graphics? Unfortunately I threw away my old Panasonic KXP2123 printer because I couldn't get color or black and white ribbons anymore. 

 

Is there a real version of Pong (video Olympics) for the computers? And I found space invaders the other night but it didn't have the little shields you hide behind in the bottom of the screen is that just a rewrite for the computers?

 

Just curious. What is this cassette adapter that you are using to read cas files from your PC to your 1010?



#9 Atari800Xl OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Nov 7, 2017 9:27 PM

 

Just curious. What is this cassette adapter that you are using to read cas files from your PC to your 1010?

 

 

Hey Swami Im using one of those cassette adapters like everyone used when portable CD players came out. You plug the little mini plug end into the headphone port of the PC, then you convert the  .CAS file to a .WAV file using A8cas-convert. Then start your atari and when the bell goes off to press play, press play then play the wav file in media player at 50% volume. Then just wait as the Atari loads it.Just keep an eye on the tape player because some games stop the tape for a second during loading, if the tape stops turning you need to pause media player, then once you hear the bell again play the wav file again.



#10 _The Doctor__ OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Nov 7, 2017 11:47 PM

This doesn't make any sense to me, if you already have 1050's why are we trying to copy the disks to tape?

 

In the Atari world almost all the software was to get tapes/roms to disks and disks to hard drives.

 

try a forum search I found some of what you look for in less than a second...

 

https://atariage.com...ssette-to-disk/

 

can't get that over to your drive? type one in...

 

http://www.atarimaga...pes_To_Disk.php

 

move TAPE software to Disk with C-D-T copier, COPY54, Cassette Operating System, The Alchemist and for multistage boot tapes the Howfen tape to disk stuff here

http://ftp.pigwa.net... A-Z/index.html

 

just scroll down to howfen and you will have what you need...

 

but with your knowledge tells, I think you might already know this....


Edited by _The Doctor__, Tue Nov 7, 2017 11:49 PM.

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#11 Atari800Xl OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Nov 8, 2017 5:04 AM

This doesn't make any sense to me, if you already have 1050's why are we trying to copy the disks to tape?

 

In the Atari world almost all the software was to get tapes/roms to disks and disks to hard drives.

 

try a forum search I found some of what you look for in less than a second...

 

https://atariage.com...ssette-to-disk/

 

can't get that over to your drive? type one in...

 

http://www.atarimaga...pes_To_Disk.php

 

move TAPE software to Disk with C-D-T copier, COPY54, Cassette Operating System, The Alchemist and for multistage boot tapes the Howfen tape to disk stuff here

http://ftp.pigwa.net... A-Z/index.html

 

just scroll down to howfen and you will have what you need...

 

but with your knowledge tells, I think you might already know this....

 

Hey Doctor, There are tons of programs to go from tape to disk, but I was looking to go in reverse, Disk to tape. I was trying to use the .Cas files to transfer the images from my PC to my atari using the cassette adapter I was telling Swami about. I really dont like using cassettes otherwise, they are very slow.

 

Really my problem is I dont have SIO2PC yet and I was trying to get games from my PC to my Atari without it , the only way I can transfer files from my PC to my Atari at the moment is via wave files. So I just wanted to make disks into waves and send them over to my Atari and load them into the ram, or save to cassette if there isnt enough ram to load both the utility and the game. Once in the ram or on cassette I could use one of the tons of cassette to disk apps and save it to a blank disk on my 1050. But I dont think I can do that.



#12 zzip OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Nov 8, 2017 9:04 AM

Also are there any Atari Printers that are usable today? Id like something with color or at least capable of graphics? Unfortunately I threw away my old Panasonic KXP2123 printer because I couldn't get color or black and white ribbons anymore.


The only color printer I'm aware of that had an Atari SIO interface was the Okidata Okimate 10. It was a "thermal transfer" printer, which meant that it has a ribbon with wax, and it melts the wax onto the paper. This means that unlike impact printers, you can only use the ribbon once, and ribbons didn't last long. It could also use thermal paper without a ribbon (the kind of paper really old fax machines used, black only) It is also extremely slow. Not a very pleasant or economical printer to use, that's for sure.

I don't know if there are other color printer options if you got a parallel certronics interface.

#13 zzip OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Nov 8, 2017 9:09 AM

Really my problem is I dont have SIO2PC yet and I was trying to get games from my PC to my Atari without it , the only way I can transfer files from my PC to my Atari at the moment is via wave files. So I just wanted to make disks into waves and send them over to my Atari and load them into the ram, or save to cassette if there isnt enough ram to load both the utility and the game. Once in the ram or on cassette I could use one of the tons of cassette to disk apps and save it to a blank disk on my 1050. But I dont think I can do that.


Interesting problem.. I'm not aware of any programs that would convert disks to tape, because disks are fundamentally random access and tapes aren't. You might be able to do this with individual binaries.

Also possibly people here would send you disks with the software you request to help.

#14 _The Doctor__ OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Nov 8, 2017 10:42 AM

yes he can put binaries .xex .bin .obj etc etc to cassette using using an atari emulator (altirra etc) and then wave it over... but honestly in all the lost time he could make a pc xformer or nick kennedy or even ftdi device and still have weeks of extra time for other things... the speed of cassette is really that slow.... and always has been except for wafer drives and and scsi back up tape units.... way to painfully slow and after talking to the local commie guy.... he said using the commie to do this is also just as painfully slow and not the something anyone he's know would consider....

 

If someone is near this guy maybe you can help him out? the bps rate on a commie or Atari just isn't the way to go for moving libraries of disks... yes it can be done.. and yes the Atari can run circles around the commie with speeders for tape and hisio for disk.... the mechanisms to do so are just so cumbersome and slow it's just not the way to go...

 

but if his PC has real 5.25 drives he could go the anadisk etc etc route..... if one of his pc's are supported.... since were doing waves to cassette adapters maybe he's lo tek enough to do it?



#15 _The Doctor__ OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Nov 8, 2017 10:45 AM

some of the programs I suggested go both ways and while random access will not work and will break trying to run off of tape... you can copy disk to tape and then copy from tape back to disk and the disk will be fine.... it just won't run as a tape image...


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#16 slx OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Nov 8, 2017 12:56 PM

I also remember a couple utilities that could convert single load .EXE/.XEX files to bootable cassettes but even thinking about that way is painful...



#17 dmsc OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Nov 8, 2017 7:01 PM

Hi!
 

Hey Doctor, There are tons of programs to go from tape to disk, but I was looking to go in reverse, Disk to tape. I was trying to use the .Cas files to transfer the images from my PC to my atari using the cassette adapter I was telling Swami about. I really dont like using cassettes otherwise, they are very slow.
 
Really my problem is I dont have SIO2PC yet and I was trying to get games from my PC to my Atari without it , the only way I can transfer files from my PC to my Atari at the moment is via wave files. So I just wanted to make disks into waves and send them over to my Atari and load them into the ram, or save to cassette if there isnt enough ram to load both the utility and the game. Once in the ram or on cassette I could use one of the tons of cassette to disk apps and save it to a blank disk on my 1050. But I dont think I can do that.


Best advice is simply to get a SIO2PC. You can make one really cheap in about 5 minutes! for a simple tutorial, see:






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