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Gunstar last won the day on January 13 2019

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About Gunstar

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  • Birthday 08/12/1968

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    In the Oklahoma outback
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    Electronics, videogames, motorcycles, great outdoors,painting/art in all mediums

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  1. I'm thinking of more archival stuff from magazines or other home-brew upgrades and mods done and archived on the internet in the last 20 years or so. The reason I ask is because you can find just about any hardware upgrade or mod ever done for the Atari 8-bits on someone's site or repository/archive or even within forums as threads and links. I expected similar in the Coco community. Maybe it's just the larger community surrounding Atari 8-bits which includes more active electronic guru's actively making new upgrades and devices for it. I have found some stuff, but it all appears to be purchasable mods and upgrades, like dual-6809 boards, and 24 to 28-pin OS boards and plenty of upgrade devices/boards that attach to the expansion/cart port that are all for sale (and many sold-out). In the Atari 8-bit community we have the same thing, but the designs and schematics for anything purchasable is generally available for anyone who wants to make their own versions. But I'll just have to start making my own from scratch I guess, like my own composite/S-video mod I am doing now, since the ones I've found instructions or videos for online for the Coco 2 are not good enough for me, except the CocoVGA board upgrade, which I will get eventually, but I still need standard video for all the software that uses artifact color graphic modes, so I'm designing my own. I was hoping to find the schematics for the Mega mini-MPI, but the manual doesn't get that detailed and haven't found any source for a schematic.
  2. Thanks! I've been doing a lot of research the last couple of days. Yes, you are right about the model, the early 16K and Color Basic 1.2. I have already installed 4164 drams and jumped the W1 points and now have 64K. I have ordered a 24-pin to 28-pin IC board from the Coco "new upgrade/mod/re-manufacture" producer/dealer 'The Zippster Zone' for $10+$8 shipping. that accommodates the 8K 28-pin 2764 eproms in the original 24-pin Extended Basic socket. And I have an eprom burner peripheral and burning software for my Atari 8-bit computer that is compatible with 2764-27512 (8K-64K) eproms, so I can burn my own ECB rom. I'll also have it upgraded with composite and S-video outputs by the weekend. This baby will have everything from extended ram (beyond 64K), to DriveWire! and the later revision video chip so it has true lower case, and what ever else, including the kitchen sink, I can throw in this puppy. I'm hunting for a Coco 1 to add to my collection and do the same upgrades for it too. When I do, I intend to install the "melted" keyboard in the Coco 1 and get the full-travel, hopefully Coco 3 type aftermarket version if I can find one will get installed into my Coco 2. Below is a picture of my Coco 2 as I have just set it up next to my Atari 1200XL system at my computer system desk I made for my house., and I moved the Atari 800 system that was there to my shop/office. When I get the Coco 1, it will go next to the 1200XL (and use the metallic grey TV you see in the pic for a close-matching color to the Coco 1) and the Coco 2 will be moved out to my shop/office with the 800.
  3. There were other different types of cables in the bag of cables and junk that included these and the Coco mouse and joystick: RCA cables, phone cables, LAN cables, microphones for portable cassette decks, and several types of probes w/clip (large old-school style) with connectors at the other end that look similar to the type that connect to my old-school Tektronics 5103 Oscilloscope, but with about 50% larger diameter. My guess was either much older or much larger industrial Oscilloscope stuff that I haven't encountered before. Also a foot-pedal made by Norelco (the electric shaver company) that appears to be for guitars and amps, but I guess it could go to a sewing machine too, for all I know (I just didn't think electric sewing pedals used 5-pin din plugs and connectors) with two cable protruding with 5-pin din plugs. Below are the more unique items besides the Coco and TI-99/4A cables and controllers.
  4. I pulled all those cables out again I first guessed might have something to do with MIDI, and it turns out I actually have 5 distinct Coco cassette drive cables(two need repair on the jack end of things)! What I thought could have been a serial port cable is actually an 8-din to 6-din computer-to-monitor cable. Since Coco's don't have monitor ports I suspect this cable goes to a TI-99/4A like the other cassette drive cable in the bunch, with the 9-pin Atari plug. So at least I am ready to go with tape software as I do have a portable cassette deck with all three jack connectors that are on these Coco cassette deck cables! And I have a couple of old Avalon Hill cassette games for my Atari that have Coco versions on the tape too! VC and Conflict 2500, so I can now test out my Coco with real software! I'll of course get some .wav or other versions of Coco tape games I can put back onto cassette tape.
  5. Yes, I do think I will need some. Of course I'll get a CocoSDC soon, but I have CF & SD card drives for my Atari's and it certainly doesn't stop me from using real cartridges, tapes and disks and the real drives still. I'm sure I will feel the same way about the Coco. Are there any sites that have classic and/or new Public domain/open-source hardware project plans and schematic archives for DIYer's like myself as well?
  6. That is VERY cool. I'm glad to here there are quite a variety of hardware upgrades and mods to do to the Coco line, just like I've been doing to my Atari 8-bits. I watched on Coco Youtube video with a Coco 1 that had a old-school/legacy DIY board in it for lower-case letters and different fonts, with 3 toggle switches underneath to turn them on and off. I did visit some links in this thread and found the mini-EPI and Mega-Mini-EPI devices, though most are sold out, including the version I would want, the Mega. I'll keep look for original EPI perhperals too. And I found out about a few other upgrades and modern expansion hardware like on the Atari. I'm VERY glad to know about the Coco Livewire, as I have Fujinet for my Atari's and I love it! I'm also glad to here there are extended memory upgrades for the Coco 1 & 2. My Atari 800 has 1MB and my Atari 1200XL has 576K. I ordered the 24-to-28 pin EBOS board from The Zippster Zone, and I have an eprom burner and 2764's on hand for that upgrade. I may get the VGA upgrade (I have RGB/VGA/DVI video board upgrades for my Atari's) But I'll first do a composite/S-video mod before I purchase. I checked out the video mod hacks and RF replacement boards, but I have some unique experience in video upgrades and I believe I can do my own custom S-video circuit with some custom tweaks of my own and come up with a better solution myself.
  7. This is definitely better than the squared box of Dropcheck's design. It's funny, because I originally made my own old-school with some 1/8 or 3/16"" craft plywood sheeting I cut and glued together, then painted, etc. And when I got my 3D printer, I went to grab the STL for Dropcheck's design, and after printing it out, it looks identical to the one I made of wood! I do like yours better, but I want one in the XL case style. So I'm going to design one myself for 3D print.
  8. Hello, new Coco 2 owner here, I started another thread about that, I upgraded to 64K the first day I had it. but in several different Coco forums I keep hearing people say "you want a minimum of 64K" or for this or that you need a minimum of 64K. I've been doing my research since purchasing one for repair, and I know it's 4K beginnings and 16k, 32k, 64k upgrades and revisions and new models, and the extended basic rom upgrade, etc., but I have not seen anything anywhere about upgrading Coco 1's and 2's beyond 64K. I'm aware of the Coco 3 stock 128K and traditionally can be upgraded to 512K. Do new home-brew or legacy DIY projects or third-party upgrades exist for the Coco 1 & 2 for 128K or 256K or more with bank-switching? What modern hardware devices complete and for sale, kits or DIY project schematics exist beyond the CocoSDC and making your own program pak boards? I also recently read about the last Coco 2 revisions having a new video chip with true lower case? Can other Coco's be upgraded to this newer chip and if so, is it just swapping or are there additional modifications required? I'm a big fan of hacking, modding and upgrading vintage machines, making them the best they can be or could have been. And now that I've taken the plunge into TRS-80 Coco's I want to make my Coco 2 the best it can be, totally trick it out, as much as possible, short of it being a Coco 3. And I always loved the larger Coco 1 style computer case, and the grey metallic look of it and the early peripherals, but I didn't get one because of the keyboard. now that I know I can use another Coco 2 keyboard or after market, I am definitely getting one and upgrading it to the max too. Of course all of these questions I have are prior to going to the links for Coco support in this thread I just bookmarked and am headed to now. So I may find the answers I'm looking for...
  9. I recently acquired the Coco 2 26-3026 model. I've been searching for another vintage 8-bit to get into; I'm sort of a collector, but I don't put things on display and never use them, they get well used in my home, but I keep them is top-shape and in fact part of my hobby is repairing and restoring vintage electronics, mostly computers and consoles. And I have been keeping buy-it-now listings in my watch list including C64, Coco's and Coleco ADAM as they are the 8-bit computers beside my Atari 8-bits that interest and intrigue me the most, plus, obviously I like the underdog and the Coco's were indeed underdog's just like my Atari's. But I feel like finally acquiring a Coco 2, was fate or destiny for me at this time. You see the Coco 2 I got was one of these listed computers, all apparently in need of some repair and love and care, the way I like them as I know I can fix them myself and restore them cosmetically to if I must. But I do look for non-working computers in the best cosmetic condition possible. The seller of the Coco 2 I got was asking $85 plus $20 shipping for a "power on but not working" Coco 2 and I felt that was a bit much, but with vintage computer and console prices going up and up I saved the listing among dozens of others. Well a while later, my business partner gave me a bag full of old computer cords and stuff as he knows I'm into the old junk, and his father gave them to him and he didn't need any of this old stuff, so he passed it on to me. Inside that bag among common phone cords and RCA cables were some strange cables that I guessed had to do with MIDI as the plugs on one end looked like MIDI plugs, but the other ends had headphone/mic style jacks or RCA jacks or 9-pin com style jacks. There were also a pair of TRS-80 analog joysticks and a black TRS-80 analog mouse. I put the cables in a storage bin with other cables of various types and put them away. The controllers I decided I was going to mod to work with my Atari 8-bits as they also can use analog controls through the Atari 8-bit POKEY custom I.C. (POT & KEY, and also a great sound chip). About another week passes, before I mod the controllers, and I get an offer from the seller of a listing I was watching for this Coco 2 for $50 plus $20 shipping and I decided it was fate, combined with the other hardware I got in the bag-o-bones, and took the offer. The computer was in far better condition that I thought when it arrived. The outside case was dirty and needed a good cleaning with a cloth and some glass cleaner, but not UV yellowed slightly like it looked in the listing picture. After cleaning it was pristine and no UV discoloring at all! So, I plug it in, turn it on, and sure enough, it powers on and I get a green screen, but with a bunch of garbage all over it like in the screen picture in the seller's listing. So I go to take it apart and start trouble-shooting the Coco 2. I find five screw holes and remove them,but the case won't come apart and is still held up in one corner. I search for another screw for a minute again until I realize that it is hidden under the never-touched warranty sticker and that this Coco has never been opened! Ok, so that means it is stock for sure, just a 16K machine with 8K Basic. But to my delight, when I open it up, there is not one spec of dust or dirt to be found inside the case or on the motherboard. This thing looks like it just came off the factory floor on the inside! I see the one empty socket for Extended Basic and the 16K drams and start researching how to upgrade to Extended Basic and 64K. I find out I have the proper 4164x8 drams on hand for the ram upgrade, left over from upgrading my Atari's with 41256x8 for 256/512K ram upgrades I did to them at one time. So I pull the old 30405 (or whatever they were numbered) drams and install my spare 4164's.Solder the points at W1 together and a 64K upgrade is done. Having already noticed the vast majority if IC's were socketed, with an interior this clean I suspected the issue might merely be some of the chips need to be re-seated in their sockets.So I go over every socketed chip and make sure they are fully seated. I found half a dozen, ranging from main IC's to 74LSxx IC's not fully seated and I plug them in fully. I close up the Coco 2, plug it in, plug in the RF, set channel 4 and turn on the TV to channel 4, and PRESTO! I am greeted with a clear green screen and the words "color basic 1.2 (c) 1982 Tandy" and an OK with a flashing color cursor! So I look up how to check memory and stumble upon the whole BASIC 32K limit deal due to legacy hardware, blah, blah,blah but I type ?MEM and it comes back showing just over 31000 bytes or about 31K, about what would be left after I/O takes up upper memory and without the extended basic installed that would then give back about 24K free memory. So I think I can deduce that my 64K memory is working at least. So I am now the proud owner of a 64K Coco 2 with the melted keyboard (reminds me of the Atari 130XE keyboard-kind of mushy feeling) but it's better than a "chiclet" keyboard! And it is in immaculate condition, inside and out, after an exterior cleaning! I still need the extended basic rom chip, but I have an eprom burner I use with my Atari 8-bits for burning game and OS roms and I have the proper 2764 eproms on hand to burn my own extended basic eprom, which I will do this weekend as well and the video/s-video mod and get rid of the horrid RF output! My Coco 2 as listed on Ebay, though they lie about the selling price, the offer I accepted via pm was for $50+$19.95 for shipping: https://www.ebay.com/itm/184740223761 The first two pictures are before and after shots of the exterior case with cleaning. The rest are untouched pictures of the Pristine case interior and motherboard.The the screen showing it working and the last images are controllers and what believe to be Coco cassette and serial cables(?) that were given to me. These pictures were compressed from 6MB to under 2MB to accommodate image restrictions on another Coco forum I joined.
  10. Sorry, but that was meant as a non-political jab at the non-elected bureaucracy and all things state run, not any political party or administration. I should have written it differently, using "branch" was a poor choice.
  11. Yes, I understood what you meant, I'm just not sure their "intended purpose" is just for Muslims to swear on in court as you wouldn't need a translated version since it's only being sworn on and not actually read. I think the true intended purpose of the translations are so English speaking people can read it. Why courts choose to use a translated version of the Quran instead of the real deal doesn't make a whole lot of sense to me for this reason, but then not much any branch of government does these days makes any logical sense.
  12. But not useless for an English speaking non-Muslim who wants to read it to help understand Islam and Muslims better as a purely academic pursuit. But I only ask as a curiosity. The Torah I don't need an English translation of as I can reference the Old Testament of the Bible, and I already understand the Hebrew faith and people, from studying the Bible and of course I am of the Christian faith, so I already also understand Christians. I was just curious about these texts in software on the Atari, I can borrow "Holy" texts in standard book form from my older brother who followed my father's footsteps and inherited all my father's religious texts when he died.
  13. It's a bit more of a unique situation though, if you get my meaning, not some old game or application. I bet he would be happy to help if he still has a copy.
  14. Ok, so I have the Super SDX cartridge from @Dropcheck, currently upgraded to 4.8, planning to upgrade it top 4.9 soon, and I have the reproduction Diamond 3.0 from @kenames99 with his upgraded GAL logic. So will I be able to use these concurrently? Also, assuming they will work together, do I plug Diamond cart into the pass-thru of SDX cart, or vice-versa? (I made a custom case by modifying my original The!Cart case I had on hand as I had moved The!Cart into an original 800 style cart shell I also modified) I'll also planning on using my MyIDE II CF card drive with both, currently sitting atop the SSDX cart and working well with FJC's boot driver for SDX & MyIDE II. Has anyone yet tried a MyIDE II or SiDE 2/3 or other SD card cart drive with Diamond 3.0 cart and SDX cart all together yet? Has anyone else made labels for Diamond GOS 3.0 carts yet? My 1200XL currently isn't working, so I haven't been able to test any of this on my own yet, so I just thought I'd ask. I'll have my 1200XL running again in the near future and have been thinking about getting it all working together. @kenames99's cart PCB for Diamond is so short I cut The!Cart cart case nearly in half to make it work, and it's completely hidden inside the 1200XL's cart slot! Of course if I have to plug Diamond into SDX, then all three carts will be showing...
  15. It's just the Bible, but of course on many disks. It was a decade or two after it's release before an entire Bible could be put on one disk. I wonder if the Hebrew Torah or Islamic Quran were ever done for the Atari 8-bit. Anyone know? Of course the Torah is basically the same thing as the Old Testament of the Bible, just translated to various languages of the "Gentiles" (what everyone else is in the world that is not Jewish) since Christianity stemmed from the Hebrew religion. The New Testament is the real meat of Christianity, the Old Testament is more for the sake of history and continuity of faith for Christians in the Judeo/Christian world view. But I don't know if everything from the Torah made it into the Christian Old testament. My father would have known (R.I.P) as he was a professor of theology and new these three major religions like the back of his hand, because he taught them! But I was never interested enough when he was alive to learn from him.
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