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TailChao

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TailChao last won the day on February 18 2019

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  1. Assorted Wedge Hardware Tipz... This resistor messes with /WE's slew rate so it'll only be there for faster grade memory - to make it react slower. From experience, the NTSC boards have marginally better signal integrity (including the digital junk) but both are kinda noisy and the layout isn't optimal. So the picture quality over RF is gonna be all over the place. Going by this documentation, the AtariVox doesn't touch the Paddle / ProLine pins (5 + 9), so you should be able to add pulldowns to these without messing up the AtariVox's functionality. What you might want to consider implementing is a circuit where these pulldowns are only enabled while in two-button mode. So gated through a transistor and using TIAEN and RIOT PB2 / PB4 to enable it - similar to the Q5, Q6, Q8 pullup network. This would (or moreso should) avoid interfering with the charge and discharge timing when using paddle controllers.
  2. I've been using puCrunch to compress graphics, stage maps, and scripts for awhile. Its performance (in terms of packing the data) is quite good and the license is fairly lenient for closed-source games (WXWindows Library License). Unfortunately, none of the below is for 7800basic - but can likely be adapted for it. Asterisks in the procedure come with which type of data you're compressing and what it's dependent upon. In my case... Graphics are run through the compressor as-is. Maps and scripts have the possibility of referencing uncompressed data or calling out to code (or may - in my case they do), so they're run through a "mini-assembler" first using a DASM symbol table and then compressed. The only restriction here is that compressed data can't reference assets within other compressed data. Both are unpacked to EXRAM as needed, since this takes awhile you may want to consider implementing this as a background task (so it can run asynchronously for several frames). I didn't do this on the 7800 but have on other hardware, basically so you don't have to stall the game while the depacker does its thing. Unpacking addresses are fixed, but that's not a huge problem here. That's basically it. Addendum : Nope, it's not. I also recommend the usual sacrilege of looking at how some NES games handle compressed resources, as it's extremely common there.
  3. A drop-in 100% compatible replacement for one of Yamaha's designs? That's still FPGA territory. I'm not trying to discount the challenge in duplicating the SID's functionality, just that it's not alone in having counterfeit issues. It's a very popular chip, but it's still not the only one. There's also always going to be a crowd who wants to buy "the real thing" regardless of whichever company the chips came from. Addendum : Since this wrapped onto the next page, a warp back to the original point - making a passthrough device like this, which contains parts that are no longer manufactured and can be optionally detected by software? Great idea. But adding SOUPER and BupChip support to it? Nah, not practical or really necessary - different kettle of fish.
  4. The SID is always going to be the most visible of the lot because it's the one buyers are willing to pay the highest for. But Yamaha's sound generators are already experiencing heavy rebadging and it's only going to get worse as we get further from their actual production dates.
  5. This is the 16KB RAM @ $4000 - $7FFF and 32KB ROM @ $8000 - $FFFF layout, right? Since... ...if you're going for an "affordable during this time" challenge, you may want to restrict yourself to only 2KB of this.
  6. While I'd like to see more widespread use of any mapper which offers enhanced graphics paging, it's not really ideal to implement as an optional passthrough. You'll get the most potential for improvement by allowing it to directly affect Sally and Maria's accesses to what's inside the cartridge. This is basically why the Aladdin Deck Enhancer took proprietary cartridges instead of acting like a Game Genie. I get the impression there's a desire for passthrough devices in the spirit of cost reduction, but it's somewhat nonsensical for this particular application - especially with component prices now. SOUPER uses a CPLD which was around $2 - $2.50 NOS (new equivalents are maybe $3 - $4.50) and the BupChip adds around $4 - $5 in components, when you're developing games large enough to justify using them - the software is where the actual expense is. However, putting all the RARE RARE RARE - NO LONGER MANUFACTURED - COUNTERFEITS RAMPANT sound chips in one box which you access through a few fixed addresses, as proposed here, does make lots of sense.
  7. There's not much to remember about the Mega Duck, it's a swollen Game Boy clone which uses proprietary cartridges. The Game Fighter knocks off the same hardware in far more interesting and waterfowl-free way. But I didn't bump this topic to discuss the Ultra Goose, did I? No, and I'm so very sorry. WARNING FOR CRAZY PEOPLE ONLY Oh no, it's Wataroo v0.8.0.0 After a long period of neglect - this is a complete overhaul of both the underlying SuperVision emulation and interface, the latter now matches BupSystem v0.9.6.4's. My reverse engineering notes have also been rewritten based upon a year of thorough extremely stupid hardware tests. Like entropy, SuperVision prices and the number of AS IS / FOR PARTS OR REPAIR units will only increase - so if you'd like to accurately experience this brick of disappointment (not that you should), give it a try. See you next version for TV-Link support!
  8. Circle the wagons and arm the missiles, someone's got an opinion.
  9. Oh hey, it's BupSystem v0.9.6.4 Oh hey, it's been a year already... wait.... wait, what? WHAT?! WHEN?! Added Support for launching in Full Screen Mode, this is enabled by setting full=y in the [display] section of BupSystem.ini. More robust Atari 7800 File (*.a78) parser. Upgraded to JoyFish v0.8.6.2. Cleanup Color Dialog didn’t restore its previous settings when canceled. Palette wasn’t recalculated on a console region change. Direct3D 9 display texture is now padded vertically, this corrects some filtering issues. Restored the behavior of rendering whether or not a cartridge is loaded. Using the menu in Full Screen Mode now shifts the display downward instead of resizing it. Screen Saver and Monitor Power Down are now allowed while execution is paused. Recent cartridges menu was broken in Windows 95. The more robust *.a78 parser just means it won't vehemently refuse to load a cartridge if it's surprised by any new type flags - it'll guess slightly harder. Support has also been added for loading SOUPER cartridges in the *.a78 format, albeit without BupChip support.
  10. Pretty much, both then and now. Albeit now that we're in the latter (as far as I know), it's a little easier for anyone to learn the required skills and give it a shot.
  11. To an extent, because the BupChip is an early Fairlight class sampler. Minnie is more along the lines of Namco's WSG (which I'm assuming is what "inspired" it - given GCC's work on Ms. Pac-Man), the later Namco N163, or Konami's SCC. That said - I do believe you could very closely approximate the overall look and feel of the game in 1990 - 1993, with a reasonable cost when manufactured at scale, and assuming someone would actually fund it. But the support hardware would be extremely different. It could be done, but I don't think this is a good approach. A small Mikey or Konami SCC syle generator (or combination of both) embedded in a mapper which allows Sally and Maria to better avoid resource contention scales better and saves cycles. Again, our design was made around selling you something for $59.99, manufactured in low quantities, in 2018. That's a different kettle of fish chips.
  12. You'd probably want to stylize it differently, but yeah I think the 7800 could run a decent facsimile. Sure, we've had enough of those threads. My point is moreso that everyone else ditched the stone knives and bear skins by the late 1980s, which drastically affects not only what the hardware can do - but the ease of working with it. That makes a significant difference.
  13. If you're looking for "used in a product which shipped during the platform's lifespan" then yeah - a POKEY and extra RAM is all you've got. If you're looking for "what could be manufactured affordably during the platform's lifespan" then we need to dip our toe into the fact that Nintendo had widely available graphics paging options on the NES in 1988 which were better than anything the 7800 received ever.
  14. Yeah, I actually used their MPXchanger to do GameBoy development way back in the before times, paired with the silly passthrough "Game Downloader" cartridge. Watching search engines try to figure out which results to prioritize like this was one of the few good memories I have of our launch, Google was hella confused. I'm not in a position where this is feasible right now, sorry. Rather, I keep bringing up this and the Steam / Humble Bundle / itch.io approach since these have become prevalent for new releases on other platforms like the NES and Genesis. They're all extremely accessible, and I think if you want to actually want to reach a wide audience which might not have otherwise noticed or taken interest in the 7800 - this is a good way to do so.
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