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building an Atari S-Drive Max for my 600XL+




This is just a quick blog of my experience of building an S-Drive Max and not a step by step, like I usually do, because there are just so many other good resources for building the device.

First, this project is a fairly easy, that is if you read several of the 'how to' websites and watch a couple of videos before working on it. (I listed some resources below). You see, most of the websites are fairly good, it's just that they tend to leave out bits a pieces in their descriptions so a step might be missed.

Second, price was fairly cheap. Mine cost only about $25.00, with a caveat; I already had an old SIO cable, I didn't plan to build or purchase a case and mine does not have the fix to allow other devices on the SIO chain. After you add all these things isn't much cheaper than one pre-built. But I didn't want one built, I wanted the experience of building it myself. Also, this is just a temporary till I get the money for a Fujinet. 


Now here some little problems I ran into. Nothing earth shattering, just annoying.

1.) Don't assume that the LCD screen with the same name as the one you need is the correct screen. I first purchased the wrong screen that had the right name but wrong pin lay out. check closely before you buy.

2.) I couldn't get Xloader to work on my laptop because I had previously installed a USB-comport adapter. Even after I removed the drivers for the comport adapter from my laptop Xloader still couldn't create a port. I had to switch to my desktop to get Xloader to create a port.

3.) Speaking of my desktop the Arduino creates a virtual comport and I forgot that I already had a real comport on my desktop and picked the real com1 instead of Adruino virtual com4. I restarted the Xloader with com4 and at that point everything went well.

4.) Double check your solder points. My +5 solder looked OK but caused the S-Drive to reboot over and over when moved. Re-soldered the point and everything went OK.

that's it. Happy hobbying.



fuzzy picture of S-Drive Max




Here are some resources:




And a YOUTUBE video:



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