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Shopping list for 600XL upgrades and more.


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#1 seastalker OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri May 25, 2018 10:14 AM

With my MIST able to do 1MB and display beautifully, and an 800xl with UAV and memory upgrade, I have some ideas on some 600xls, XEGS and even a 400.

 

I'm sure we'd love to put Lotharek's, Bryan's, and Simius's goodies in EVERY machine, but if budget is an issue, I thought it fun to organize some upgrades.

 

XEGS- at stock, I may keep it at my significant others. Standard video cables to a flat panel or likely a soon added CRT.  I have 10 carts and that may be fun to set up like a game console with the keyboard usually unplugged.

 

800xl - has S-video as mentioned and memory upgrade- used with a 1050 stock drive and SIOtoUSB as my main workhorse.  Maybe U1MB down the road but it already surpasses a 130XE and I DO have my MIST with old IBM CRT w. VGA.

 

600xl - more than one. This is where it gets interesting. RF is a PITA to still be using, and 16kb is limiting.  An Atari 1064 is rare to find and looks like it loses the small footprint of the 600xl; it is also expensive to the point, it's hard to justify that over Lotharek's U1MB. I saw guides of how to do an internal 64k upgrade, but anyone have a link for the proper RAM chips to buy on ebay?  I hope the retro shops start offering all-in one part kits. Then there is video. Simius's Sophia seems the easiest and then dremel the 2-3 switch big enough for a DVI port. Is a cheap composite kit available, maybe using the hole where the RF is?

 

400 - Probably stay stock video - I can't imagine heavy typing but for games like Star Raiders and F-15 Strike Eagle it may be cool.  Anyone have a ram upgrade?


Edited by seastalker, Fri May 25, 2018 10:41 AM.


#2 JR> OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri May 25, 2018 11:14 AM

UAV works great in the 600xl too and the DIN connector space already exists on the MB.  Very easy to install

 

A couple of other memory upgrades to consider for the 600xl...

 

Antonia 4mb - Plug and play, no soldering whatsoever AND it replaces the onboard memory, so you don't need to upgrade to 64K first. 65C816 CPU, 7 flashable OS ROM and BASIC slots and multiple RAM configurations.  With Spartados X and the proper drivers you can access the entire 4MB!

 

SYSCheck 2.2 - Plugs in like the 1064 and provides 512K RAM expansion plus flashable OSROM slots.  You will still need to do the 64K upgrade first.  Plus it doubles as a RAM/ROM checker for all PBI/ECI equipped 8-bits.


Edited by JR>, Fri May 25, 2018 11:28 AM.


#3 manterola OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri May 25, 2018 12:47 PM

For 600XL I got an UAV. Then I got a female din5 for PCB connector. The soldering pads are already there, so you just clean the pad holes and solder the new connector.
To make a hole in the case I used something called spade bit. I guess 5/8" was the size of it.
The 64kb upgrade is pretty cheap and easy. 10 minutes job if you go slow and careful. Check the picture, I used TMS 4464-10nl
After that you basically have a 800XL with excellent video output and reduced footprint.

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#4 xrbrevin OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat May 26, 2018 12:48 AM

the internal 64k mod is neat, 100% compatible and easy to do.

just search ebay for: "41464 Dram" and buy 2 of them then all you need is a bit of wire and youre good to go! :)



#5 seastalker OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat May 26, 2018 11:02 AM

In this Youtube video,  it is claimed the Antonia 4MB upgrade requires a 600xl to be upgraded first. to 64k.  Is this true JR or do you know otherwise?   It may be worth it to upgrade to 64kb regardless - xrbrevin, would   eBay item number:

151057118990 fit the bill?


#6 JR> OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat May 26, 2018 11:21 AM

 

In this Youtube video,  it is claimed the Antonia 4MB upgrade requires a 600xl to be upgraded first. to 64k.  Is this true JR or do you know otherwise?   It may be worth it to upgrade to 64kb regardless - xrbrevin, would   eBay item number:

151057118990 fit the bill?

 

 

Maybe that was an older version of the board or something.  The Antonia board I have replaces all RAM and ROM on the motherboard.  I have completely removed all the RAM and ROM chips from my 600XL and it works great.



#7 chevymad OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat May 26, 2018 11:21 AM

For your 400 there's this upgrade  http://atariage.com/forums/topic/267042-new-hardware-atari-400-ram-card-4852-kb-external-os-rom/page-1?hl=+400%20+ram or you can do ClausB's 48k upgrade yourself. http://atariage.com/forums/topic/267042-new-hardware-atari-400-ram-card-4852-kb-external-os-rom/page-1?hl=+400%20+ram  I upgraded mine with Claus's upgrade. 



#8 Nezgar OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat May 26, 2018 1:12 PM

Maybe that was an older version of the board or something.  The Antonia board I have replaces all RAM and ROM on the motherboard.  I have completely removed all the RAM and ROM chips from my 600XL and it works great.


I can also confirm Antonia works with no onboard RAM or ROM chips present. I've done the same with Antonia and a 600XL. Curious if yours works with a SIDE2 cart inserted? Mine doesn't like that for some reason, but I haven't tried it in a different machine yet to rule out a machine specific problem.

#9 JR> OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat May 26, 2018 3:14 PM

 Curious if yours works with a SIDE2 cart inserted? Mine doesn't like that for some reason, but I haven't tried it in a different machine yet to rule out a machine specific problem.

I don't own a SIDE2, but I'll be happy to test it for you if you send it to me :-D

 

Been meaning to fill that hole, but have been waiting to hear the fate of SIDE3 before pulling the trigger.

 

I did come across this thread when researching Antonia.  If you have an early board, it sounds like a firmware upgrade might remedy the problem:

 

http://atariage.com/...ia +side +600xl



#10 JR> OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat May 26, 2018 9:20 PM

I don't own a SIDE2, but I'll be happy to test it for you if you send it to me :-D

 

Been meaning to fill that hole, but have been waiting to hear the fate of SIDE3 before pulling the trigger.

 

I did come across this thread when researching Antonia.  If you have an early board, it sounds like a firmware upgrade might remedy the problem:

 

http://atariage.com/...ia +side +600xl

 

Oops, I see now that you've already been down that road.  What about the extra connection to EXTSEL that is required for some devices on the 600XL?  Have you tried that?



#11 Nezgar OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun May 27, 2018 8:40 AM

I appreciate you read the old posts on the antonia thread! Yeah, fw update didn't help me. I did not know of an EXTSEL fix, I'll do some searching about that unless you have a link handy to suggested reading on that.

(Sorry to hijack this thread about my problem lol)

#12 flashjazzcat OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun May 27, 2018 9:00 AM

The EXTSEL connection to Antonia is only required for PBI devices like IDE Plus 2.0. See here:

 

http://atariage.com/...xtsel-required/



#13 Nezgar OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun May 27, 2018 9:10 AM

I do have an original 1MB MIO, might want to connect that on occasion... needed for that? Is it an easy mod?

#14 flashjazzcat OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun May 27, 2018 9:37 AM

It would be needed for MIO, but I wouldn't call it a mod so much as a jumper wire. I don't own Antonia, however, but I imagine the installation instructions will tell you how to connect EXTSEL.



#15 JR> OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Jun 19, 2018 12:06 PM

I can also confirm Antonia works with no onboard RAM or ROM chips present. I've done the same with Antonia and a 600XL. Curious if yours works with a SIDE2 cart inserted? Mine doesn't like that for some reason, but I haven't tried it in a different machine yet to rule out a machine specific problem.

Finally got tired of waiting for SIDE3 to come out, so broke down and bought a SIDE2 (and U1MB) when fleabay was doing their 20% off Father's day special.  I can confirm that the SIDE2 works just fine in my Antonia 600XL.

 

Now which computer to install the U1MB in?! Decisions, decisions.....



#16 seastalker OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Jun 19, 2018 7:41 PM

Just a quick hello and thank you to flashjazzcat. I've watched your YT videos which have helped me greatly. 

 

I got my 64k upgrade kit and hope to install it this week. 



#17 seastalker OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Jul 9, 2018 1:28 PM

@JR   Slightly off topic, but I now have an Antonia and tested it and it works a charm as far as in Self Test. Anyone used to stock only will be surprised to see the LARGE blocks in Mem test- reminds me of the board game RISK with 10 men being represented by the weird shape pieces. :) 

I look forward to testing the biggest demo scene stuff. You mentioned the 65C816 CPU replacement of the Sally 6502. It didn't come with a manual and didn't find much YT video content about this.  How does this CPU differ and compare and what new functionality does it add?



#18 Nezgar OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Jul 9, 2018 2:05 PM

the LARGE blocks at the end of the MemTest mean you have a rev 3 (later 130XE) or rev 4 (XEGS) OS ROM, designed for the 4 extra 16KB blocks of extended memory (64KB)... It actually has a bug as it only tests 2 of the 4 16K banks due to manipulating bits 1 & 2 instead of 2 & 3. On many memory upgrades more than 128K I recently learned because of this it actually causes the a crash at the point of that test because of the poor bank switching code... I guess my original 130XE only had the Rev 2 XL/XE OS ROM.


Edited by Nezgar, Mon Jul 9, 2018 2:06 PM.


#19 seastalker OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Jul 9, 2018 2:06 PM

@manterola  - Does wire gauge matter in these things? If so, what range should I stay within? I have lots of spare new wire. 



#20 manterola OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Jul 9, 2018 3:20 PM

@manterola  - Does wire gauge matter in these things? If so, what range should I stay within? I have lots of spare new wire. 

I really don't know. I guess these are very low currents, so most wires should work. I used an old hard disk IDE cable for the two soldered wires and I got a small piece of solid wire from a CAT6 Ethernet cable for the jumper in the picture (just stuff I got from my "junk box").

 

BTW, the rev 3 OS was also included in my 65XE with ECI (purchased in Chile back at the end of the 80s or maybe beginning of the 90's, my first computer, ever!).

The first mod I ever attempted was adding the ram chips and the EMMU to my 65XE, and it was a nice surprise to run the self test and see the additional memory blocks being tested (supposedly tested). That test actually failed... then I changed one ram chip (tms 4464) and it worked!.  So I have to say that (at least for me) the self test and the memory check part is not totally useless: it helped me to detect a faulty memory chip. Now I have an 130XE with a 65XE badge.



#21 JR> OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Jul 9, 2018 6:00 PM

You mentioned the 65C816 CPU replacement of the Sally 6502. It didn't come with a manual and didn't find much YT video content about this.  How does this CPU differ and compare and what new functionality does it add?

I'm probably not the most qualified person to answer that, but I'll try.

 

1st -a disadvantage - The original CPU had some undocumented opcodes that are used by some programs.  The 816 does not support those, so code using them will not run correctly.  No idea how much software that might be.

 

For programmers the 816 has multiple modes that extend the functionality of the original CPU.  Only really an advantage if you write your own code or run code developed for the 816.  Probably not a lot of that code out there either.

 

SPEED - The 816 can run at higher clock speeds and access memory running at higher clock speeds, but these features are not leveraged in the Antonia board so no real advantage there.

 

The biggest advantage for me in the Antonia board is the ability to access the entire 4 MB of RAM.  Specifically Spartados X has drivers that allow you to use the 816's 'Linear RAM' .  So you can have the normal extended memory, up to 1mb Rambo or 2 or 4 mb Axlon boards.  All remaining memory can be set up as 816 linear ram, and be accessed by the Spartados X 816 specific drivers to give you a huge, slightly faster ramdisk, wile leaving the normal banked memory for other uses. Probably not terribly useful for most users either, but pretty cool to see a  4160K Atari 8 bit computer.



#22 seastalker OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Jul 11, 2018 4:37 PM

RE: 64k upgrade - After a 100% successful XEGS microswitch repair this week I went for the 64k upgrade on the 600XL.  @manterola - your picture looks different than other's upgrades. Maybe at some point I will try yours.  I found a never used car stereo connection and cut a wire to strip and snip for required lengths. I folded back and cut some extra copper strands to thin out both ends.  As per the start of the guide in this thread: http://atariage.com/forums/topic/183694-600xl-64k-upgrade-pictures/  I did the mod but it did not work: I got a black screen.

 

I then thought maybe some part was bad and tried going backwards; from another tested 600XL with good chips to swap in, my plan was slowing "undoing" what I did until I got the Ready screen back. I'd unseat the chips with wired legs and leave them floating in the air (not touching anything) on its board-connected wire. Each 'floater' would get an original chip with legs intact put back in each spot. Even R36 resistor leg was but back and the old 16kb chips. Only time I got the blue ready screen was when I tried one 16k ram IC with one of the newer ones to make it 64.  That only worked once and now I'm at black screen.  Restoring everything the way it was still is black screen, even if I try the antonia board to bypass some things.  Anyone have an idea what might be buggered? (other than me) 

. .  



#23 manterola OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Jul 11, 2018 9:36 PM

I was Ina similar situation with my 600xl, in which something I tried failed and then when I went back it didn't work again.
At the end there were two point (pins) which had connectivity problems. I am talking about the connection between chip pin and socket. Everything looked ok, I tried reseating the chips, but did not work. Only way to discover those problems is with a multitester in continuity mode and check pin by pin the continuity of the circuit, staring on the IC shoulder to some other point of the board.
The 600xl schematics helped me a lot to follow the circuit connections.
In my case, if I remember correctly, I had problems with two pins of the Sally chip socket which were not making good contact with the pins of the Sally itself. I replaced the socket and everything worked.
Maybe something similar happened to you.

#24 DrVenkman OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Jul 12, 2018 5:56 AM

I was Ina similar situation with my 600xl, in which something I tried failed and then when I went back it didn't work again.
At the end there were two point (pins) which had connectivity problems. I am talking about the connection between chip pin and socket.


The “Ugly Duckling” 1200XL I restored last year had no less than THREE bad sockets. All of that was a bear to track down and fix but it was worth it.

#25 seastalker OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Jul 12, 2018 9:15 AM

Cross referencing another related part of this topic: http://atariage.com/...ssue/?p=4068795

 

I fixed my XEGS this week AND got one 600XL working with the help of an Antonia board. Only NON-satisfactory part is I'l always wonder what remains wrong with the board without Antonia's crutch. :)  I'm going to do my best to fix this other 600XL. I'm a noob with a multimeter but found some tutorials. I also picked up a NIB digital logic pulser for a steal locally- my next thing to learn.

 

Multimeter set at 2000k for resistance testing, I am putting one probe in the holes on the left of the board and then poking each pin of socketed chips.  I also tried R36 on both boards and get very different results. Also the pads where the 64k upgrade went somehow wrong. Only thing is, it dawned on me that I'm working on two boards with issues, as the 'working' one has its issues lipsticked over by Antonia.  I have the 600XL Computer Field Service Manual Rev 1 but where do I find the intended values of the pins of smaller chips and say R36 so I know how to make heads or tails of the numbers the multimeter displays?  I'm learning a ton this week.






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