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Everything posted by electronizer

  1. bob1200xl’s comment reminded me that I also ended up capturing from the luma output, which gave a nice, sharp picture. I may be remembering incorrectly, but I’m pretty sure the composite capture was still usable, just more blurry. I’ll have to dig out the setup I was using and try again. Not sure if it makes a difference, but I wasn’t using the fancy video editing software included with the device. I got my VC500 as a freebie with a VCR I bought some time ago, and there was no software or key included. I used Diamond’s basic capture tool that’s free to download online.
  2. I have one of these; it worked fine to capture the composite output from an unmodded 800XL: Diamond VC500 USB 2.0 One Touch VHS to DVD Video Capture Device https://www.amazon.com/dp/B000VM60I8/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_glc_fabc_JJ92FbCQG4QJ6
  3. @kheller2, yes—you can find copies of the OS ROM and handlers here. Thanks again to @bob1200xl, who helped me dump them! @geneb I assume you’re talking about the red socket on the daughter board? There’s nothing missing, that’s how the daughter board plugs in to the main board. There are pins coming up from the main board that go into the red socket on the daughter board.
  4. Mine is #13. It is labeled as an engineering sample on the case, and also has a stick-on label that says “Atari 1450XLD / 1400XL 10-7 Used for PT68 Test” The 6 in PT68 looks like it was written over a 1.
  5. Wow Jason, that’s a great find! Thanks for the update! Looking forward to pictures. Now I just need to find that elusive 822 to complete my Atari 1st generation working printer collection.
  6. I found my BlackBox a few years ago at an electronics swap meet. I have it connected to the original 800XL our family got for Christmas ‘84. It talks to my SMM804 and Lantronix UDS-10. My BB has the Enhancer, and the other day I was having fun using it to print ATASCII characters to the SMM804. I was always impressed that Antic magazine listings had printouts of the special characters and wished I could do that, so it was exciting to see the printer crank them out! I have two SCSI drives somewhere, and if I can figure out parity, termination, and parameters, I might try hooking them up.
  7. Non-collector’s guide to selling Atari computers via online auction If it says Atari, it’s RARE. Put RARE in the auction title. Maybe put it two or three times so bidders will be sure to notice. If it says Atari, it’s VALUABLE. Don’t worry if it’s in poor condition, cracked, or not working. Even if all you have is the box (or part of the box), it’s worth money. Search online for your item and sort from high to low price. Offer yours for at least 20% higher than the highest price. If this seems like too much work, USD999.99 is always a good starting bid. If you can’t find your item in an active auction listing, it’s probably worth billions. If it says Atari, it’s IN DEMAND. Because it’s RARE (see #1), desperate collectors will fight over it. There’s no need to waste time and effort cleaning, gluing, or otherwise trying to fix it up, people will bid on it just the same. In fact, if it’s covered in dirt and looks like it came out of a landfill, people will probably pay more for it. If it says Atari, it’s INDESTRUCTABLE. No need to waste time and money on careful packaging. Throw everything into a box with a few pieces of crumpled up paper and ship it. Or, for even more cost savings, just wrap it in one sheet of bubble wrap and put a shipping label on it. If you position the shipping label just right, it can double as tape to hold the bubble wrap together.
  8. Well, my 130XE isn’t socketed so I decided to test everything else first and FREDDIE last. Found the problem: one of the Intel 2164 RAM chips is bad. The 1400XL is happy once again with an 8264 subbed in from my 800XL. I’m looking around for a place to buy a replacement chip. All the RAM chips in my 1400XL and 800XL are 150ns but I’ve heard 200ns will work as well, is that correct? Also, it looks like 2164, 4164, and 8264 RAM chips are all compatible, and you can even use a 41256 (256k) RAM chip, since the extra address bit is just tied to Vcc through a pull-up resistor.
  9. Thanks for the input everyone! AtariGeezer, good point about checking the basics first. All three voltages are present and correct on the board. Also, the sys-check device definitely looks like it would be worth it for fast diagnostics if I were going through lots of machines. I have a 1450 board. I’ll keep swapping parts and see if I come up with anything.
  10. My garage sale 1400XL decided to stop working sometime between VCF West 2018 and now. When I turn it on, all I get is a black screen. No luck on video or RF, and nothing with Star Raiders inserted either. I also tried booting with OPTION held down and seeing if I could start the audio test, but that didn’t work. So far I’ve swapped Sally, GTIA, ANTIC, and POKEY into a good 800XL, and they all work fine. I’ll need to dig out my 130XE so I can test FREDDIE. Nothing is burning up, though two of the PAL chips seem to be getting pretty hot. Any suggestions on what else to try? I have an oscilloscope if it would help to look at clock signals, etc.
  11. Looks like I have half of an Atari 2700 Rev 0 motherboard. Anyone have the other half?
  12. I got so used to Atari’s menu-based DOS that I found it awkward when I had to figure out how to use the command line. I had to learn my way around the PC XT-compatible system my dad got surplus from the university. We assembled the pieces loose on a card table, without a case. The massive power supply and full height 20MB HDD sounded like jet engines after years of working with the silent 800XL. And only a green monochrome monitor! What’s all the fuss about these IBM PCs anyway?
  13. I love this thread! It really takes me back to the 80s. However, it’s a bit of a sore subject for me. I have looked for “historic” photos of me with our family Atari, but the only photos I can find are with my older sister. In this photo, you can also see our Seikosha GP-100A printer, which I still have. I’m also enjoying the stories of teachers and their reluctance to accept early computer-printed papers. I remember my sister losing points on an assignment because the lowercase letters on the GP-100A didn’t extend below the line. My dad, always an early adopter of new technologies, was disappointed that the teacher wasn’t more supportive. Our setup was fairly simple, since we didn’t have a large budget for computing equipment. We just had an 800XL, a TV, and a 1010 tape drive to start. Later, my dad got frustrated with the tape drive after I partially overwrote one of his programs, and splurged on a 1050. The GP-100A also came later, we bought it secondhand from a member of our local users group. I remember being fascinated with the ability to print graphics, and spending many frustrating hours trying to type in the graphics program in a photocopy of the manual and get it working. Later, we found out there was a typo in the DATA statements, and I was excited to finally see graphics appear under the slowly grinding print head. I’m sure I cut them out and hung them up in my room. I noticed one picture with lots of graphics printouts on the wall, including one of Harrison Ford as Indiana Jones. Was that an Atari image file? I would have been thrilled to have that picture on my wall as a kid!
  14. hunmanik, thanks for posting the link to the early version of the 800 manual—that styling definitely looks like the label on my cartridge. I did end up talking to Larry Wagner—he graciously gave me some of his time and we had a good discussion about the early days of Atari. I was looking through my notes and these two points seem relevant: - Larry recalls that someone else took the 2600 source code for Video Chess and modified it to work on the 400/800 - Larry was researching bank switching with EPROMs and has a prototype that looks like my cartridge (I’m assuming he meant the inside view, not the label) Of course, this still doesn’t confirm anything about the origins or authenticity of my cartridge.
  15. I was away from the forum for two months, came back to update a post, and saw this. I’m so sad to hear this news. I have a copy of Atari Inc: Business Is Fun, which I read cover to cover. I was amazed at the depth of the book and the sheer amount of information on Atari’s early days. I had driven past the building where the first Pong machines were built and I never even knew it until I read the book. My thoughts go out to Curt’s family—he will be missed.
  16. Finally got a chance to look at this again and I figured it out. The Mylar cable was bent at the end, probably to give a better fit in the connector. The traces ended up breaking right at the bend, and the edge connector plug was only making contact on one side of the traces, the side that came after the break. I solved the issue by swapping the outer two connections and flipping the connector over so that it was making contact on the other side of the cable, before the break. I also used a pencil eraser to gently clean the traces. It works very well now—happiness!
  17. Thanks for the suggestion evilmoo! He is not done typing in the program yet, so we don’t want to delete TypoII. When I used to type in programs, I would save the program with TypoII in intermediate stages until it was done, then I would use the commands above to remove TypoII. It still doesn’t make any sense to me that LIST “D:PROGRAM.BAS” would access the disk and then cause TypoII to run. LISTing or SAVEing a program should only access the disk drive and should have nothing to do with program execution, right?
  18. I gave my nephew an 800XL along with an 810 disk drive and some Antic magazines. He typed in a whole program before learning that he had to boot with a disk in order to save it! Now I have him set up with DOS and TypoII so he catches any mistakes. However, we are noticing some strange behavior. I’m having him LIST and ENTER his programs to avoid the BASIC Rev. B bug with SAVE. However, now when he LISTs his program to disk after typing in some code, the disk drive does its thing and then for some reason, TypoII starts. If we restart the computer at this point and ENTER the program from disk, the code he typed is gone. Any ideas?
  19. Yes, that is interesting considering the disk I got with it has C-64 software on one side and the Atari driver on the other side. There was no special software for the Atari, instead, the driver disk just allows you to use the Learning Keys keyboard in place of the Atari’s keyboard. When it was working, it worked pretty well with Hodge Podge, where pressing a different letter gets you a picture of something that starts with that letter (e.g. “K” gives you a koala).
  20. Thank you both for the quick replies. There is no other circuitry visible and the panel looks like it would be damaged beyond repair if I tried to peel off the keyboard layer. The keys are raised pads and definitely have tactile feedback, different from the non-key area. No calibration is required, however, the driver disk can detect whether the keyboard is connected to the joystick port. So, it must be looking for a particular resistance at the paddle inputs.
  21. StickJock, good guess! Looks like it’s using pins 7, 5, and 9, which would be +5V and both paddle inputs. Resistance from pin 7 to 9 is 11Mohm, and it doesn’t change when I press the keypad. Pin 7 to 5 appears to be open, again with no change when pressing the keypad. The Doctor, any thoughts on how I would reconnect the stapled traces? I’m thinking I would almost have to rip out the staples, add conductive paint, and then put new staples in before it dries.
  22. I got one of these a few years ago. From the start, it worked intermittently—sometimes the letters worked correctly, sometimes the rows were shifted so that e.g. when I pressed Q, it registered as K (the letter above it). Eventually it stopped working altogether, to the point where the driver disk wouldn’t even detect it. I took it apart to find “reject” stamped over the “QA Approved” stamp (uh-oh), and two flat Mylar cables coming out of the panel. I used a pencil eraser on the traces where they connect and they cleaned up nicely. However, only one Mylar cable connects to the joystick cable. The other one is connected by two “staples” that pass through the traces on both cables. When I measure the resistance between these staples and the contacts on the cable that connects to the joystick cable, one is high (several megohms), and the other is open—no connection. So, I’m guessing this is where the problem is. Anyone have any ideas about how to repair this stapled connection between the cables?
  23. Pictures of the keyboard, disk, and insert with instructions for Atari owners:
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