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Everything posted by TJ76

  1. I'll look into this - thanks.
  2. Option key sorted it. I simply did not know about this, many thanks! 4:3, yes of course, stupid of me just letting it auto to 16:9. In 4:3 the overscan to right is gone. Still a very small amount to left, and this weird pixel hashing effect remains (was hopeful when reading that stretch back to 4:3 would resolve that, but it's something else going on.) I'll try other TVs when have more time in case it's still just modern boxes just not being fit for this. Appreciate all the help. I'll also read into vgate etc. Do you think the hashing / poor graphics quality (when compared to emulated) could be this, or could i have a fault? I have another 800xl on the way I can compare with soon. Wanted to have a second so I have a more 'sacrificial' machine to play with in case i screw something up at any point which is more than likely. Thanks again. TJ
  3. Yes, I think that was it, thanks!
  4. Good evening, Before I start, please feel free to comment on anything here where I may be doing something silly, as openly classing myself as amateur Atarian here after returning to using after over 30 years, and as a kid I would have never dared open the box up or do any of this stuff. I'm enjoying playing here, and objective is to both restore system to best it can be and have some fun along the way. Hope my ramblings may amuse and appreciate any advice. I recently posted this regarding graphics issues with my 800XL recently recovered from the loft : I'm pleased to note that following advice, I found a power supply that seems to improve matters in terms of interference seen on screen (understanding noise from USB was a serious thing after trying a few alternate adapters and a 'professionally' made cable (e.g. not by me)). USB power always noisy giving varying distortion, so moved on. I still note that I see out of place hashed pixels, which when compared to same software on an emulator is not very clean, so believe I still have a graphics issue and would love to know best way to fix (did add myself to pre-order list for a Sophia, and wonder if that would bypass issue, or not?) Unsure what this PSU was originally for - I hoard stuff so had a box full, but rated +5V 2.4A - switching power supply made by "CUI STACK" . Anyway it's not fuzzy, just cleaner pixel issues, but this post not about that (unless general system issue and related, please comment). So, I received my SDrive Max that I ordered from voidabone on Ebay. I guess could have put one together and may later build another myself, but I'm lazy, and also I like the case that came with it. Generally love this thing. As lost/discarded tapes, I only had a few cartridges, so now able to load a lot of software sourced from http://a8.fandal.cz/ Found a few gems I used to play as a kid. Start Raiders (lost cartridge somewhere along the way), Draconis, Thrust, Ninja to mention a few. Great nostalgia. Interestingly though, some ATRs or XEX files will not load properly / fully. Same will load fine on Altirra-3.90 , but that's not just the same is it Many will not load with odd screen corruption just as it seems to be about to complete. Two to note as examples, Defender ends like this: Then goes to a black screen. Hijack! is most odd, it seems to fully load: Thing is, the train is animated, but the clouds do not move, the helicopter does not appear and music does not play. Cannot start game, just stuck there but scrolling text moves ok. Again, loads fine on emulator. This is where I get silly. Searching around I find a CAS file, and Wav for Hijack! on http://www.atari.org.pl/tape/4/atari-smash-hits-4-hijack! I have an Atari 1010, but it has a broken tray, and PSU dead. Again, I found a compatible PSU, and soldered to connector and got power and motor works, and moves after OPT+Start and a key. So I'm thinking : I no longer have anything to record tapes with. I did check as recently grabbed a USB walkman device to capture some old mix tapes I also found in the loft, but it won't record, I used with Audacity to record to mp3, but I digress (often). Seems I started investigating the dead 1010 years ago not realizing it was the PSU as screws were out and was all open. I get thinking - What if I can find on the board where the audio comes in from the read-head and insert signal from a PC. I have a nice little "Maker Hart" mixer that I use to take sound from my work laptop, 2 PCs and an Alexa, and it has a 'record' output that sends a non-amplified signal out. This was mostly blind luck, as with it powered and connected to Atari, I was checking voltages where I thought it was (with Atari in START-Opt mode ready to load), and as I probed with a meter , i hear a slight audio buzz. Out comes the soldering iron and ......well: and before long, after playing hijack!.wav file in windows media: Then a false start: So I tried another file and after a time: So, went back to Hijack! and similar error. Then remembered I used to have to forward wind some tapes past the leader else they failed to load for some reason, so I started file a bit later. This time, loaded to about last 4 blocks, then heard a familiar change of tone and load failed. I realize perhaps a notification came up on PC, so disabled network via ncpa.cpl and tried again and finally in' in, have properly loaded title screen and i'm playing: Please note the pixel garbage on far right of picture, which i seem to get on a number of games I load. So conclusions: - There is nothing about this game it's self that my Atari doesn't like, as I can load it from tape (well sort of) and play it. - The S Drive Max seems to be source of problem loading some files. It's running KBr V1.2 , and I re-flashed it from PC after something silly happened and I seemed to be stuck on a reversed screen with touch-screen not responding. I realize from further reading around I perhaps could have done something else to re-calibrate, however it was on V1.2 anyway, so I assume my re-flash hasn't caused this (not 100% if was issue before, as I was still getting to grips with it). - I think lock-down has sent me a little crazy re trying my 1010 tape hack. This pretty much working first time has amused me a little too much Any comments on fixes for the S-drive loading issues or the slightly off graphics would be greatly appreciated. I believe it's quite a high percentage of software that will not load. Perhaps not 50%, but a lot. Take care all. TJ
  5. Thank you both for these responses. I love how many people out there are still using Atari's and i'm getting very nostalgic. Two great points I think here - the first I had read variations of on other threads; in that modern displays being ultimately from another age are showing up unintended effects when connected to the vintage hardware, and in my mind, the fact that projects such as SOPHIA or UAV exist is testament to that. I also note the point on Power source being a potential issue, and with that being something cheap and non-invasive to replace, I'll certainly try sourcing a new PSU first, and if no effect, take that on the chin. For further info / if helps anyone else; the effects / distortions (if my memory serves correctly) may have been present already on older CRT, but have nothing around now to prove / disprove that. I recall a very long time ago (86 / 87 perhaps) that there was a problem with the original PSU, where after a few hours of use, hard horizontal lines of distortion started appearing on screen and moving downwards, along with an audible hum. We took it to a small computer repair shop in South Woodford, London, and they replaced the supply with an alternative that was actually from a Commodore. This is the dead one I have here, and has P/N310200-04 which I believe was from a VIC 20 or C64. Unsure if the PIN outs were modded for it to work or was compatible as read it had 9V and 5V output and believe I'm right saying the Atari takes +5V only. So I do wonder if this was a poor fix back in the day since I also recall after some time of using after this that the lines would re-appear after several hours of use even with the replacement supply. Not had this particular effect happen using my USB franknencable. Given this additional info, if anyone thinks from this there is potential of damage to the machine due to either being connected to an inappropriate PSU before, or for some other fault that was badly worked around, i'd appreciate the input. I'd love to get this thing working as well as possible, and awaiting an order of an SDDrive Max so I can use more software than the 7 cartridges I have, as all my tapes are long lost. Thanks all and have a great weekend on your Atari's! TJ
  6. Good evening all I've recently rediscovered my old Atari 800, and got it working again. Power supply was dead, however after some searches for PIN out info I was able to get it working by cutting the wire and soldering the 7 PIN DIN to 5V from a USB cable that worked a treat. Graphics output from RF modulator was poor (and far more visible connected to the 50" Panasonic plasma I am testing on that old CRTs), so sourced a 5 PIN DIN to composite cable, which improved output, however on cleaner image I am able to see hashed pixel corruption in the images. (see attached examples). Also on the READY screen I can see some fuzzy bars horizontally across the screen and more apparent distortion on the left side. Images attached. I have read various pieces of info on known graphics issues, and potential fixes - replacing ANTIC chip etc. Also read about mods such as SOPHIA to improve output, however new to tinkering with this old stuff, so unsure if this would work around the problem, or whether it would remain. Before I look to purchase replacement parts / mods (and wanting to keep unit reasonably stock and avoid any serious soldering work), I wondered if somebody could offer their opinion of best steps here. Realize this likely covered elsewhere, so appreciate it if could link me to best info, would be very grateful. Looks like my board is partially socketed if that helps me out re replacement chips. Some images attached, and thanks in advance. TJ
  7. Please could I pre order one of these for my 800XL. Thanks 😊
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