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Building a Supercharger?


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#1 hepguy OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Apr 8, 2018 4:06 PM

Has anyone attempted to build a supercharger? Is this something anyone has attempted to reverse engineer?

#2 SignGuy81 OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Apr 8, 2018 4:13 PM

Here is a start http://atariage.com/...s-inside-of-it/



#3 SS OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Apr 8, 2018 4:17 PM

The Cuttle Cart I was kind of like a Super Supercharger.



#4 hepguy OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Apr 8, 2018 4:40 PM

That's really interesting, I am always curious about vintage tech. It is always fascinating what can and cannot be reproduced, it is suprising how often out of production chips seem to be the hang up.

#5 hepguy OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Apr 8, 2018 4:46 PM

How does the magicard cassette interface compare to a supercharger?

#6 xucaen OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Apr 8, 2018 8:45 PM

I kinda wish Stella could load an mp3 of a Starpath game.



#7 iesposta OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Apr 8, 2018 9:12 PM

I kinda wish Stella could load an mp3 of a Starpath game.

 

Why?

It loads a .bin file of a Starpath game, complete with Purple loading animation.

 

Attached Files


Edited by iesposta, Sun Apr 8, 2018 9:23 PM.


#8 stephena OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Apr 9, 2018 4:45 AM

I kinda wish Stella could load an mp3 of a Starpath game.

 

When we get back to working on the Compumate emulation and loading/saving data, we will probably support loading/saving to WAV file.  But never MP3 I think, since that's not what the original hardware supported.  The original tape hardware (Supercharger, Compumate, KidVid) used essentially only WAV data (technically it was PCM, but that's close to WAV).

No ETA on this; I won't even make a guess.


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#9 Mr SQL OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Apr 9, 2018 9:19 AM

 

When we get back to working on the Compumate emulation and loading/saving data, we will probably support loading/saving to WAV file.  But never MP3 I think, since that's not what the original hardware supported.  The original tape hardware (Supercharger, Compumate, KidVid) used essentially only WAV data (technically it was PCM, but that's close to WAV).

No ETA on this; I won't even make a guess.

 

The SuperCharger supports MP3 players, apple audio formats too and even vinyl records.  

 

Try playing some games off of your iPod with friends and you'll see what a great remote control it makes; you get to select a new game, view the artwork or read about it while the current game is still playing. 

 

Adding support for an analog line-in like the SuperCharger has would reproduce that functionality and the encapsulating format wouldn't matter. 

 

Looking forward to the Compumate emulation!

 

 

I kinda wish Stella could load an mp3 of a Starpath game.

 

I wish the Harmony would add a line-in to future models like the Cuttle cart, the Kroc and the SuperCharger all have; would have been a better choice for the silicon real estate than the usb port imo - I would use the line-in to load games but I don't even want to see a usb port,  put black electric tape over it like a VCR.

 

As it stands the Harmony can play more games, but the other three flash carts all have a superior interface for loading games from an iPod while the Harmony has a badly flickering DOS menu; imo that is the worst Atari game ever and without an analog line-in it has be played first every time you want to play a fun game.



#10 hepguy OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Apr 11, 2018 4:43 PM

I have to agree that having the analog line in would be great. I have a peculiar bias twords using the original medium whenever possible, so have that ability built into the cart would be a nice touch.

#11 wongojack OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Apr 11, 2018 5:16 PM

[Begin Scrooging]
 

I wish the Harmony would add a line-in to future models like the Cuttle cart, the Kroc and the SuperCharger all have; would have been a better choice for the silicon real estate than the usb port imo - I would use the line-in to load games but I don't even want to see a usb port,  put black electric tape over it like a VCR.
 
As it stands the Harmony can play more games, but the other three flash carts all have a superior interface for loading games from an iPod while the Harmony has a badly flickering DOS menu; imo that is the worst Atari game ever and without an analog line-in it has be played first every time you want to play a fun game.

 
Why would the Harmony need this?  This is like saying you wish it had a cartridge port pass thru to be able to plug in any cart.  Why, when you can just pull it out and put the cart you want to play in there?
Badly flickering DOS menu?  What are you talking about?  The game selection screen?  It flickers?  I don't remember that.
 
 

I have to agree that having the analog line in would be great. I have a peculiar bias twords using the original medium whenever possible, so have that ability built into the cart would be a nice touch.

 
I don't know if I understand where this is coming from.  If you have a bias towards original hardware then just use an actual Super Charger.  Why would you want to reverse it in the first place?  You mean you want to use the actual tapes?
 
[/End Scrooging]

#12 Swami OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Apr 11, 2018 5:31 PM

[Begin Scrooging]

 

 

Why would the Harmony need this.  This is like saying you wish it had a cartridge port pass thru to be able to plug in any cart.  Why, when you can just pull it out and put the cart you want to play in there?

Badly flickering DOS menu?  What are you talking about?  The game selection screen?  It flickers?  I don't remember that.

 

 

 

I don't know if I understand where this is coming from.  If you have a bias towards original hardware then just use an actual Super Charger.  Why would you want to reverse it in the first place?  You mean you want to use the actual tapes?

 

[/End Scrooging]

cassette.jpg :grin:

:D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D



#13 hepguy OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Apr 11, 2018 5:54 PM

Yes the medium is the cassette, the hardware (being the supercharger) I am not concerned about being original for a couple of reasons.
1. They are bulky
2. They are proving to be expensive to find in Canada, or very expensive to ship to Canada.
As well as I have an idea of exploring the possibility of modding a system to have one installed internally with a 3.5mm port. Much like the Japanese master system with the 3D adapter.

#14 Jinks OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Apr 11, 2018 5:59 PM

Yes the medium is the cassette, the hardware (being the supercharger) I am not concerned about being original for a couple of reasons.
1. They are bulky
2. They are proving to be expensive to find in Canada, or very expensive to ship to Canada.
As well as I have an idea of exploring the possibility of modding a system to have one installed internally with a 3.5mm port. Much like the Japanese master system with the 3D adapter.

That would be great. Look at what they did with bluetooth on the a8. I always thought that would be the best mod for atati consoles.

Edited by Jinks, Wed Apr 11, 2018 6:32 PM.


#15 Mr SQL OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Apr 12, 2018 7:22 AM

[Begin Scrooging]

 

 

Why would the Harmony need this.  This is like saying you wish it had a cartridge port pass thru to be able to plug in any cart.  Why, when you can just pull it out and put the cart you want to play in there?

Badly flickering DOS menu?  What are you talking about?  The game selection screen?  It flickers?  I don't remember that.

 

 

 

I don't know if I understand where this is coming from.  If you have a bias towards original hardware then just use an actual Super Charger.  Why would you want to reverse it in the first place?  You mean you want to use the actual tapes?

 

[/End Scrooging]

 

I wouldn't want the cartridge pass through because it would be easier to load the games from the Harmony.

 

The menu isn't that bad but using an ipod as an external menu is a much better interface for selecting and finding games, particularly because you can browse games while the current game is still playing. And it would make the game library accessible to the device.

 

The SuperCharger already has a GUI operating system with starfield screensavers and a curtain, an ipod makes for a natural exension of the GUI.



#16 xucaen OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Apr 13, 2018 5:14 PM

 

Why?

It loads a .bin file of a Starpath game, complete with Purple loading animation.

 

You see? I did not know this.  I love AtariAge! :D



#17 Jinks OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Apr 13, 2018 5:55 PM

Can a multicart load starpath games?

#18 iesposta OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Apr 14, 2018 7:04 AM

Can a multicart load starpath games?

If the multicart runs the Supercharger bankswitching format then yes.

Harmony carts can. An example is the color hacked prototype for Suicide Mission I posted above. That's 6K and plays from the Harmony cart as a bin file, or as audio to a Supercharger (which is one-game-at-a-time 6K RAM multicart).

Even the multi-load games that extended a game into levels. Dragonstomper is 25K with the three parts combined into 1 BIN file. That plays from Harmony, from Stella emulation, and from websites that run a browser 2600 emulator.

The multi-carts before Harmony I am not sure. The Krocodile Cart runs up to 64K games with an RS232 interface, the CuttleCart uses an audio interface like the Supercharger.

The Supercharger games were data (1's and 0's) sold on an audio cassette format to the gamer.
Game carts are data on ROM chips sold to gamers.
Emulators use a binary file that is a copy of this data.

When played to a Supercharger those 1's and 0's end up in its 6K RAM (the remaining 2K is for its operating system code that holds the graphics and the code that turns audio into data).

Since consumers started backing up their purchases (or people started sharing illegal copies depending on which way you look at it) there was software to convert sound WAV files into BIN files and the other way, BIN2WAV*.

*That last one lets almost every game that was 2K or 4K (or written for the Supercharger's 6K) be converted from a binary file into sound file that will run from the Supercharger. That's over 315 games like Adventure and Enduro and the "new 4K Pac-Man" that contains the cut scenes and that sounds and plays like arcade game (even my 4K Flappy with the speech sample) run from the Harmony.


The Supercharger being one of the handful of gaming things I have now that I bought back when it sold... eventually sparking my Retrogaming hobby and leading me here to AtariAge.

#19 Mr SQL OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Apr 14, 2018 12:44 PM

 

Can a multicart load starpath games?

 

I think the Cuttlecart is the only multicart besides the SuperCharger that can load SuperCharger games directly from tape or your phone. The Harmony and the Atari Flashback Portable both need the Supercharger games to be processed into a compatible format first. 

 

There is software called wav2bin that can turn the audio stream into a binary for the harmony, and a new cross compiler than can recompile BASIC SuperCharger games for the Atari Flashback Portable.
 
There are 20 new SuperCharger games, SuperCharger BASIC and the cross compiler for the Atari Flashback available here.
 
There is a new French book SuperCharged that has an illustrated overview of the SuperCharger spanning the history of the technology and the games. 


#20 Trebor OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Apr 14, 2018 1:04 PM

You see? I did not know this.  I love AtariAge! :D

 

Can a multicart load starpath games?

 

The original retail Supercharger games are in the attached archive. 

They are already converted to *.bin. 

Just unzip the archive and copy the files to the Harmony cart.

 

Attached File  StarpathSupercharger_binfiles.zip   84.24KB   12 downloads






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