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1200XL M.U.L.E.

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Everything posted by 1200XL M.U.L.E.

  1. I managed to work on my 5200 a little bit. I installed the power conversion kit that separates power from the RF cable. I installed a Sophia that I originally intended for my 8-bit machine. I ordered two games to test the video output, PacMan and Defender. So far, so good! Both games fired right up and the Sophia board is working like a champ. Now I need to find a solution for audio output and I need a controller. One step at a time.
  2. Does anyone have one available? Thanks!
  3. Hi @DjayBee !! Thank you for the insight and clarification! I did not realize how complicated the inner workings of SynCalc are. Now I understand better. When I read your title, the first thing I saw was "1985". Without knowing there are separate binaries inside SynCalc, I thought the modification would support all 1985 memory modes AND 48k machines AND Axlon. We all see something different, I suppose. 😄 My experience with your modification (for what it may or may not be worth ) has been very positive. I am able to read and write both single density and double density disks without any problems. Also, I save *.DIF files to single density disks for import into SynGraph without any problems. My two drives are a XF551 and an unmodified 1050. My experience is fairly narrow. I mostly track stock prices and values. Attached here is an example of some data, as a 180kB SSDD ATR file. Nothing special but you can see how I am exercising your modification. Thanks again for all your work here! 🏆 SynCalc Stock Data.ATR
  4. @luckybuck Forgive me if I sounded like I was complaining. I did not mean to come across like that. Yes, @DjayBee did some incredible work on SynCalc and the Atari community definitely owes him a a huge, huge thanks! ❤️ I have been using that version daily! I was asking for clarification because I am a little confused. Maybe I missed something. I thought the 1985 version modified by @DjayBee would offer 85kB like the non-modified 1985 version but I only see 21kB on my 130XE. Is the modified version not work with the extra 130XE memory? Thanks!
  5. I would like to revive this thread and change the topic slightly, if that's OK with the forum. I added a 130XE machine to my "Atari Laboratory" today. 🥳 The first program I wanted to run is SynCalc. I tried the 1985 version modified by DjayBee, quoted above. This is what I have been using with my 1200XL and my XF551 drive. I thought I would see a lot more memory available but I still only see 21kB. Is that as-designed? Did I miss something? The 1985 version from the Atari Wiki gives me a a whopping 85kB of usable memory space! Wow!!
  6. Using a combination of SynCalc, SynGraph, MagniPrint ][ v4.1, and The Bank Street Writer I review and manage my investment portfolio. Switching between the apps is a little cumbersome but the slowdown is actually healthy for me. Makes me think more about what I'm doing - not so much with the software and hardware but with my money.
  7. With listings like that I often get tempted to post everything I have for $7000 and let users submit offers. I would take an offer of $2000. Everyone would be a winner. I get $2000 to rebuy what I have and have plenty left over for my IRA contribution. The buyer would feel like they got a $5000 discount. Seriously, the world is crazy!
  8. Hey ... whatever it takes, I suppose. A fool and his money are soon parted. Atari might as well pick it up.
  9. @-^CrossBow^- Thanks for the note! It sounds like I need to order a cheapie test game from eBay.
  10. Fantastic work, @santosp!! Thanks for putting this basket together. I will surely use it when the boards arrive.
  11. I recently bought a 5200 console from Goodwill. It was a bit of an impulse buy but the idea had been brewing in my head for a while. I wanted one to learn more about the system, especially the differences between it and the 8-bit home computers. The console was filthy! There was hair, dirt, bug eggs, and rust on the shielding. I think it must have sat inside a storage locker for 30-ish years. No controllers and no power switch box was supplied. I didn't know the power was fed through the switch box. Ooops! That is the consequence of an impulse buy without complete prior research. I ordered the power conversion kit from Console5. It does not look complicated to install. I opened the console to clean the case and motherboard. The motherboard was surprisingly clean! I suppose the case and shielding did their job. The case was scrubbed with soapy water and a toothbrush to remove all the excrement. Assuming the power conversion kit installation goes well, what should I expect when I apply power? Should I see an Atari splash screen? Once I know it works then I will look for controllers and games. I see a GTIA chip here. Anyone install Sophia into their 5200? Thanks!
  12. @santosp The board looks wonderful! Excellent job!! I put my name down for some blank boards in your other thread and cannot wait to reproduce your work. 💪
  13. @Simius I tested the system. Unfortunately, no good news. I do not have any image through UAV S-Video or Composite with Sophia plugged in. I installed original GTIA chip back in the socket and I have an image again. So, the Sophia board seems dead. Is there anything I can to revive it? Can I send it back to you for a failure analysis at least? Maybe there is some incompatibility between Sophia and UAV that may have overloaded Sophia? I am beginning to see some similar symptoms in my other 1200XL motherboard. The image seems to jump or jitter sideways (left to right to left) sometimes. Not often but it happens. Maybe this is my plasma TV?
  14. One of my Sophia boards failed last night. It was installed in my 1200XL with the UAV Rev D modification. The computer would not boot up right away after powering on. I had to hold the reset button down for 5 seconds and then it would boot after release. Sometimes the picture would also shift left and right by a few Atari pixels, almost like slow jitter. All this went on for about a week. Now the DVI output is seemingly dead. The computer still boots so it’s probably working as a whole. This happened late last night so I didn’t have time to diagnose it much. Maybe the Sophia board is dead? Maybe the Sophia board is corrupted? Maybe the Sophia board needs a configuration reset with SCONF? Maybe something feeding Sophia died and I have a broader system problem? Anyone else have this experience?
  15. @Gunstar I agree with you here but from a slightly different angle. Like you, I have no burning desire to acquire a 1400XL. Of course I will take one if an opportunity arises and I have the easy good fortune to get it. Who wouldn't, especially if it doesn't break the bank? I had the privilege to grow up with Atari computers. The 800 was a fundamental building block in my childhood but that experience was in my childhood - not my adulthood. As a child, I would not have appreciated the power and capability of applications like SynCalc or the deeper dives into the hardware like learning about the GTIA, ANTIC, and all the OS ROMs. In my adulthood all these more advanced topics make sense to me and I am able to connect my present Atari experience with my childhood Atari experience. Connecting these two times in my life makes the Atari ecosystem feel complete and right to me. It's like a sense of belonging and identification. I don't particularly need a 1400XL for this. My 1200XL and this forum is plenty! I find it odd that I am not drawn to the 800 like I am to my 1200XL even though I did not have any childhood experience with the 1200XL. Maybe this is because I feel like the 1200XL is the natural extension of the 800. It is where I would have gone if my Atari childhood experience had carried on without interruption to adulthood. Just as children naturally grow up, the 800 in my life probably would have grown up to a 1200XL. I don't necessarily feel some sort of pride with my 1200XL but it does feel special to me. My heart would be broken if the machine died. I would aim to replace it with another 1200XL system but I wouldn't fight fate if I was told to move to an 800XL or 130XE. That means there is something there for me and it would be another chapter in my Atari experience. Atari computers are just "things". They may be special "things" but they are "things" nonetheless. Even though a 1400XL is very, very cool all it would do is add "expensive" to the word "thing". It wouldn't add anything to the word "experience" for me.
  16. I would be interested in two if the price is acceptable. Shipping to the US. Thanks!
  17. I placed my motherboard on a massive mousepad. Worked well.
  18. Knowing how irrational people can be, the price of a 1400 would go up even more as a repro would just attract more attention.
  19. The GTIA socket in my 1200XL was super tight too. I took the motherboard out of the case, placed it on a pad, and then installed. Press down firmly, like wow-this-is-hard!, but evenly and it went in.
  20. Damn! So happy that I have what I have and not want for (too much) more.
  21. I ordered four Sophias and installed two so far. Each had different default settings. One of them was defaulted to 720x480p and it worked perfectly with my older plasma TV. The second one was defaulted to 1344x960 and did not work with my older plasma TV. I changed to a modern monitor with a DVI port and a perfect picture appeared. Then I was able to run sconf.xex to check the settings. I lowered the resolution and now the board works on my TV. Bottom line - if you see a black screen but the computer boots then don't panic!
  22. I can hear that 800 screaming in pain as the drill ground through the plastic and a little bit of the machine's soul escaped into the ether. That poor thing needs some healing.
  23. @Simius Ahh, this saved me. I experimented with different resolutions and my TV turned black at every setting except the default 720x480! Thankfully I could always revert back. Then I attached one of my modern HD monitors and it can work with any resolution. That monitor has a setting to “compress” the image into a 4:3 ratio. The image on the monitor was even more bright, more vivid, and even more sharp than what my TV shows. Outstanding! Simply outstanding! I was once very excited about finding my TV at my local thrift store. It has 3 S-Video inputs, 2 Component inputs, and 2 HDMI inputs. That seemed to make it an almost perfect screen for my Atari “laboratory” and beyond. Now with Sophia all those analog inputs can be brushed aside. I truly hope Sophia becomes a de facto video standard that is as readily available as the UAV Rev D modification is today. I still have to figure out how to mount the DVI connector board. The massive heatsink in the 1200Xl covers so much valuable space and I’d rather not remove the RF modulator. What is the name of the cable connecting Sophia to the DVI board? Is that something standard which can be ordered in different lengths?
  24. Just wanted to say, above all else that was mentioned here in 11 pages of posts, that I think it is absolutely fantastic and outstanding the Atari community has people all over the world developing upgrades, modifications, and other bits of new hardware for what is essentially a dead and historic product. Such a vibrant community! People like @candle and @flashjazzcat deserve some sort of medal! I'm actually a little surprised that someone in China hasn't tried making an 1:1 8-bit clone/knockoff and selling it on eBay or AliExpress for $100-$200. I'm not talking about emulated hardware but a real machine with reverse engineered GTIA, ANTIC, 6502, etc chips. Make the whole thing socketed so it can easily take these awesome upgrades. U1MB, Sophia, 32-in-1 ... it would be an experimenter's dream come true.
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