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Everything posted by bfollowell

  1. If you really want to use RespeQt, or just give it a try and compare it to APE, you can build an FTDI-based SIO2USB cable relatively easily for less than $20, assuming you have a spare SIO connector or an old SIO cable you can sacrifice. I used this cable to make one last year and it works great. I still have and use my AtariMax SIO2PC-USB Dual Port interface and it works great. I love APE and ProSystem software, but RespeQt is pretty great too and works really well. It's a toss up as to which I use sometimes. I just like having options.
  2. You're definitely right. I can't imagine using an old retro computer of any type, that much, for that long, and have things still running. I think @ParanoidLittleMan asked about maintenance over the years. I too wonder if he's ever had to re-cap the PSU or anything over the years, or if this thing has actually been running, out of the box, for 30 some odd years.
  3. Well, if the SCART to HDMI converter that @mistapaul uses works, then I'd be willing to bet that it'll work just fine with my OSSC. Still, I'll give it a try this weekend and confirm.
  4. I can't. I've been looking and can't seem to find anything now. Since I've thrown it out there, and since I really need to get mine checked out anyway, I'll try hooking mine up this weekend, even just temporarily and precariously mounted, and check it out, just to make certain I'm getting good signal and see what the image looks like. Assuming I actually get an image, I'll post pictures of my results.
  5. Well, like I said, I haven’t gotten mine quite hooked up and working yet, but that’s the idea behind me buying it. I’ve read of others using it, but I can’t personally say that it works or works well. I’ll have to pull mine out soon and give it a try, even if I don’t have it fully mounted, just to make sure things work.
  6. Cool Novelties makes an RGB to SCART cable which can then be used with an OSSC to produce beautiful, crystal clear images. I have the VBXE, the cable, and the OSSC for use with my 1088XEL, but I've never gotten around to getting my VBXE mounted above my Sophia and getting everything working yet. It's on my fall/winter project list though. Technically, it doesn't mention the OSSC, so I guess you could use the cable with any SCART compatible display or device. I guess SCART wasn’t west you asked about, specifically, but I know the OSSC has SCART input and HDMI output, so that’s how I intend to use the cable. Here's a link to the cable if you think you'd like to look into it.
  7. Yeah! What a scam! Trying to get us to believe that he's been using that system for 36 years, when there's no possible way he could've been using it for more than 34, maybe 35 years.
  8. Man! That was one nasty looking XEGS! Of course, that just makes the results that much more dramatic. She looks beautiful now. You did a great job restoring it. Congratulations on your first A8!
  9. Well, I've received my cables and connectors and, as of today, I finally received my boards from OSH Park. The boards and the connectors are small, no doubt, but not horribly so. Honestly, they don't look too bad. Assuming I take my time with them, and tack the connectors down by soldering one pin on each end, then taking my time to move across, I really don't thing it'll be too much of a problem. I think the key will be to solder a pin or two, the back-off for a couple of minutes so that heat doesn't buildup too much on those flex boards. I'll just have to take my time and see how it goes. I look forward to giving it a go this weekend.
  10. Yes, I agree with this. Compared to some units I've seen repaired, this one doesn't look too bad. I mean, it has audio and video, even if they're scrambled. It's those that don't do anything at all, and give no indication of life other than maybe a power LED that can be hard.
  11. After a little more looking, I think I found my own answer. It sounds like most oscilloscopes have a common ground between its various channels, so I won't be able to use each channel on a separate circuit as I'd hoped. I'll just have to check one board, then move to the other board and back and forth as I compare. Not a big deal. It just would've been nice to have both waveforms on the screen at once for comparison, but it's not the end of the world.
  12. The crazy summer heat has finally broken here and I'm getting ready to overseed my lawn, so I'll have at least a month with no mowing or other lawn work. I should be able to get back to troubleshooting my 800XL soon. One question. I finally own a digital scope, but it's been decades since I really used one much. I want to confirm that I can use it the way that I want. Since there are two separate channels, can I check and compare two completely different circuits, using one channel for each? I want to use one channel on my good 800XL and one with the bad, and start going through chip by chip, leg by leg, trace by trace, comparing and looking for discrepancies. Any issues with this approach that anyone can think of? Thanks!
  13. That was probably it. It's been a few decades. Thanks for the memory jog!
  14. Yeah, I know there was a cartridge copying device that sort of worked on this same technique that I had years ago. I think I still have it somehwere, but I can't recall what it was called. The Impossible maybe? I don't remember. I just remember that I was contacted by some software developer that was wanting me to help remove copy protection from a bunch of old titles that they'd gotten the rights to. They sent me copies of a bunch of games, mostly old Adventure International stuff if I remember correctly, and that cartridge copying device, Alpha Systems' two copy protection methods books and maybe some other stuff. This would've been sometime between about mid-'91 to mid-'92. I can't even recall if I had much luck or not. I believe I still may have some of that stuff packed away somewhere. I'll have to look into it.
  15. Yeah, I'd misunderstood your original post on that. I thought you were saying that you could normally hot swap cartridges on an XL, which I knew wasn't the case. I missed that you were saying to boot with the translator disk, and then you could hot swap. I guess I'd just never needed to try that, so I'd never realized that you could hot swap after booting the translator. I just knew it would never work for me, but that makes sense since I never tried to start a cartridge after booting with the translator. It's good information to have though. Thanks.
  16. Well, I guess that works the way I remember it then. It enters into an endless loop, basically locking up the computer if you hot swap. Which is exactly what I remember. I guess I'd never actually tried booting a translator disk and then inserting or removing a cart.
  17. Are you sure about this? I've never had a cart that I could insert or remove without locking up the system. Anytime I swapped a cart, it would require a warm boot at the very least, if not a full cold boot.
  18. Oh, I didn't think your post was serious. I only meant that the old system wars, and those that still feel that way are silly.
  19. That looks like an awesome set of books. I may have to look into downloading some of those. I've seen many of them on other sites, but there are a few on there that I don't recall seeing before. Thanks for sharing!
  20. I never understood all that silliness. Even back in the day I felt it was silly. Today it borders on ridiculous!
  21. I'm sorry that someone got scammed, and he certainly didn't deserve it, but sometimes common sense has to come into play. There's a lot of truth to the old proverb "A fool and his money are soon parted". Thank you for posting. Everyone be aware and use common sense in all of your online dealings.
  22. Hey, it's Harv's machine and he can do what he likes with it. That being said, your thoughts mirror my own exactly. I can understand why he would want it at 100% though, and everything working properly.
  23. I can't recommend Fluke multimeters highly enough. I've used them for going on 40 years and they are great. They do have many higher end, more expensive models, but they have some cheaper, lower end models. I'd only use a higher end model like a Fluke 87V at work, where we deal with 480V three-phase voltage on a daily basis, but a Fluke model 113-115 is great for bench use. Don't get me wrong, there are plenty of other decent multimeters out there, and if you're only using it on a work bench for checking continuity and DC voltages, I guess just about any no-name cheap meter will do, but if you want top quality and you ever work with anything else around the house, you can't go wrong with a Fluke 100 series multimeter.
  24. Not to get the thread too side-tracked, but I'd really like to know where to pickup such a device, if any of you that mentioned having one could pass a link along. It looks like it would be a useful piece of test equipment to have and a cool little project to put together. Thanks in advance!
  25. Well, that 3.5" floppy certainly doesn't look like any floppy that was ever released for the ST line. It looks like a PC551, which was itself almost a clone of the XF551 for the 8-bit line, just for the ST and PC line, and the one I mentioned earlier. The only problem is that it has a 3.5" drive mechanism in it, and I'm almost 100% certain that there was no drive like that ever put out by Atari. What I think you have in the first picture is an Atari PC551 drive where the drive mechanism has been swapped out in favor of a 3.5" floppy. The second picture looks like it could very well be the original 5.25" floppy mechanism from the aforementioned drive. It's been a while since I've seen the drive mechanism for a PC551 or an XF551, so I can't say for sure. Either way, I don't think that first picture of the Atari drive is the way that drive was originally configured. I could be wrong though. It has happened before and will no doubt happen again.
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