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About Geister

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    Chopper Commander
  • Birthday 07/21/1953

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  • Location
    Lehigh Valley, PA
  • Interests
    Atari 8-Bits, Little British Cars
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  1. In issue 38 of Analog magazine, there is an article: "Fractals, An Introduction", by Alex Leavens that might add more information. I think that there was an article in Antic as well. I'll post it if I find it. Found it. Volume 4, Number 12. April 86 issue. "Fractals for Your Atari" and "Fractal Zoom" by Charles Jackson.
  2. Replica Atari Controllers can be had pretty cheaply on Amazon. I purchased two of them when I started getting back into Atari stuff. The SIO2SD is a great addition that will eliminate the need to maintain fussy floppy drives and disks. It is a box on the end of an SIO cable that plugs into the back of your Atari and the box has a display and buttons that let you navigate the SD card to load many games. But there is a home-brew option called the SIO2PC that lets you use freely available software, a USB or serial cable, and an interface board called an FTDI board that can be patch cabled to the SIO port of the Atari. This allows you to load games from a Windows or Mac computer's hard disk to your PC. The FTDI boards are available from Amazon and other vendors. A third option is to buy a SIO2PC cable ready-made from various vendors.
  3. I'd like to have my 256MB MIO, 20MB hard drive, and my 130XE adapter (for MIO) and RTime8 clock. I've got the 130XE again. Running SpartaDOS, that machine felt like the equal of any IBM clone. I just needed an XEP80 to complete the system.
  4. My 600XL had a bad Sally, a bad Pokey, and two bad RAM chips. I think they were fried by a long gone power supply. It's weird seeing the board without sockets as everything on my 600XL was socketed. It made it really easy to swap chips around. You might want to consider socketing the RAMs and the three ICs that need to have pins lifted to perform the RAM upgrade.
  5. Nope, still no 4116's in the 600XL. They had 4416's. Different ram, different pin-out.
  6. A month ago, my 600 XL was dead as a door nail. Today, everything is working. If you can beg or borrow another working 600 or 800 XL, you can swap your chips into it until you have found all the dead chips. My 600 had a dead CPU, a dead pokey and dead ram chips (plus a flaky keyboard mylar that just needed cleaning). The only things you can't test in an 800 XL are the ram chips and the 74S32 chip. Of course my 800XL was fully socketed which made things easy. After I replaced the CPU and Pokey (bought both from Best Electronics for ~$40) I put a pair of 41464 chip in place of the dead 4416's and the computer booted right up. Then I ran the three wires that made the unit 64K. These little beasts are never doomed until the motherboard's cracked in two and the case is on fire. They are really well built. Maybe being in the UK, you should contact @FlashJazzCat for help.
  7. I don't think a 130XE could help you test 256K rams unless you already have a 320 upgrade installed. Most 130 XE have 2 banks of 4164 chips installed. A 600XL won't be much help testing 4116's as they contain 2 4416 chips, not 8 4116's. 4416'S are 16kX4 bits while 4116's are 16KX1 bit. Maybe an original 400 or 800 memory board would have socketed 4116 chips.
  8. That Atari 400 mouse pad is awesome! Where did you find that?
  9. I took the keyboard apart and wiped it down with alcohol and a micro-fiber towel. When I reassembled it I replaced the failed tape holding the cable end together and after some tweaking to get the function keys to work freely, everything is working. I may still need a new membrane for the keyboard, but not tonight. Time to order the U1MB and a UAV board.
  10. Actually, I didn't bridge anything, I had a cold solder joint on one of the wires in the via's. A touch of the soldering iron and she booted right up. I had to borrow the keyboard from my 800 XL just to run the self-test because the 600's keyboard Mylar is in bad shape. As soon as I turned on the computer with the keyboard plugged in it started repeating "5" across the screen. With the swapped keyboard, a "PRINT FRE(0)" returned 37902, so I think the ram upgrade took. Nothing but green blocks on the ram test! Getting there!
  11. It sounds a bit like the music for the old Magnum PI show.
  12. Well I guess I'm paying for getting greedy. I ran the wires for the 64K upgrade and now the computer is not booting again. Green screen with dancing color wisps again. I must have bridged something.
  13. If you've got to my age and the eyes are getting cataracts, maybe cataract surgery will help. I had the surgery last year and the difference was amazing. It's like I had a pair of brown filters on my glasses making everything darker and crap colored. After surgery, I was able to go back to an older prescription on my glasses and colors are brilliant again! I feel like I have 20 year old eyes.
  14. I remember that I had already own my 400 for a couple years in 1982 and I had heard that Pac-Man was available on cartridge. I don't remember the exact month it was but it was quite warm and sunny the day I picked it up at General Computer, so I'd guess July or August. Man I wish I kept boxes and stuff back then. I've recently re-acquired that 400 and the cartridges from my nephew. They still work perfectly.
  15. The 600 XL is back among the living. I ordered the 6502 and POKEY from B&C Computervision and while waiting for them to arrive, I swapped all the small chips into the 800 XL where there was an analogous part. They all worked perfectly. The only chips I hadn't swapped were the 74S32 and the two RAM chips. I tested the 74S32 by plugging it into a prototype board and hooking the outputs to some ancient LEDs and resistors and wiring the inputs to 5 volts and ground. All 4 gates followed the truth table exactly so it was working. When the CPU and POKEY arrived I powered the board up and still no picture. Just a black screen with dancing vertical color wisps. I took the movement to mean that the CPU and video chips were alive and since all the other chips I tested were good I thought it was either the ram or some discrete component in the video circuit. I had purchased some 4464 compatible rams prior to testing in hopes of upgrading the memory, so I plugged them in to see if they made a difference. The computer came up with the familiar blue screen but no sound and no "READY", just the cursor. I had seen that behavior when I tried the dead POKEY in the working 800XL so I checked the new POKEY chip. Sure enough, the pins on the new POKEY chip were splayed enough that they had completely overshot the back side of the socket and I hadn't even noticed. When I rolled the pins and plugged it back in, the computer booted up, farted at me and said it was now "READY". Hoooo-rah Victory! Sorry I didn't film anything (or think to take pictures). Hopefully, the above descriptions will help guide someone trying to resurrect a dead 600 XL. It really does help to have a second working computer to swap parts into. It saves a lot of time poking about with a logic probe. This morning I hope to run the wires to make this a 64K machine and then start ordering parts from Lotharek (or his US distributor, Amiga on the Lake). I wanted to do a U1Meg upgrade, a UAV, and a SIDE 2 cartridge...until Jon uploaded his SIDE 3 preview. Now I have to wait for a SIDE 3. Just kidding I'll still get the SIDE 2 until the 3 comes out.
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