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kool kitty89

Why didn't/couldn't Atari Corp use the AMY in the ST?

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They had a limited amount of time to get a working prototype together for the CES, & that wasn't enough time to get AMY working with everything else.

 

Then they had a limited amount of time to get the ST finalized for production, & that still wasn't enough time to get AMY to work.

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I tend to think that Tramiel and Co. went on that GI, YM chip because it is more than sound chip. There are ports on it, so it is used for floppies and for printer port, and even for serial port. Exactly by slogan: power without price.

Using some better, specialized sound chip would need better analog circuits after it too. Then, mono sound was good because the same - saving costs, + those which had sound only via RF + TV would not feel inferior :-D

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I remember reading an article/interview with Shiraz where he stated the YM was meant to be the equivalent of the bleeper in the PC and Mac Plus, really only something for system sounds rather than actual audio. He also alluded to the real sound chip coming later, though whether that was the DAC in the STe or Amy is unclear. Sadly I can't track this down online at the mo. I presume at the time he saw some sort of 'blitter like' later arrival (which iirc he also referred to as a ST graphics chip in the same article), though how it would have tied into the system is unclear.

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Time to really blow everyone's minds...

 

In April 1984 Atari had designed an AMY Expansion card for the 1090 XL Expansion box...See attached ZIP file of the actual Schematic.

 

This and other evidence I'm examining... I am not believing the old storyline that Atari Corp couldn't get it to work. Somethings just don't add up and from the Atari Inc standpoint, it seems like this chip was nearly ready to go, something else happened during the Atari Corp days. I'm leaning more towards - they needed money to fund the ST design, so they decided to sell off the chip design or license it out, or something along those lines, IMHO.

 

attachicon.gif1090_AMY_Card17APR84.zip

 

 

that souds very reasonable

 

 

 

And wasn't much of the ST design work done by ex-Commodore engineers before Tramiel even bought Atari? I think that's sufficent to explain why the ST used virtually nothing that was created by Atari Inc R&D

 

ST in some aspects is similar to Commodore 900, I mean (If I remember correctly) video chip and the way floppy and hard disk was attached to the main bus and memory

 

 

I don't think that Tramiel even started to think about concrete new, 16 bit computer design while still was at Commodore. Plus, design of C64 and ST, done by same man, Shiraz Shivji is very similar.

C64 - weak CPU, many custom chips, HW support for video, sprites ... ST - most of it is on CPU, except DMA . Other thing is what would be if Commodore would not take over Amiga design ...

Why would ST use some chips created for 8-bit, low res, game oriented XL and family ?

 

Even amiga 1200 had 8bit chips - e.g. CIA.

Tere you can find A3000 motherboard with tons old-school chips: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amiga_custom_chips#/media/File:A3000mb_layout.jpg

 

 

 

But even the Pokey was a better sound chip than what they used for the ST. They also could have included an SIO for peripheral backwards compatibility.

 

As a fan of Pokey's square sound I would not agree with this.

In opposite to YM It wasn't projected as soundchip, it sounds more metalic, has less bass, and due to low-resolution is out-of-tune in some octaves.

YM has two 8bit I/O ports: A - used for bi-diretional centroincs and B - something like PortB from XL.

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As a fan of Pokey's square sound I would not agree with this.

In opposite to YM It wasn't projected as soundchip, it sounds more metalic, has less bass, and due to low-resolution is out-of-tune in some octaves.

YM has two 8bit I/O ports: A - used for bi-diretional centroincs and B - something like PortB from XL.

 

 

i agree with you here, love the sound of the Pokey, but i also love the YM, problem was to few voices, for me a dual YM would have been a great options

Edited by fedepede04
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i agree with you here, love the sound of the Pokey, but i also love the YM, problem was to few voices, for me a dual YM would have been a great options

 

 

there is a solution, unfortunately only for XL/XE - Sonari: 2 x YM2149F plus Pokey from XL:

 

 

8d03538cd0b725e3.jpg

Edited by Cyprian_K
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They had a limited amount of time to get a working prototype together for the CES, & that wasn't enough time to get AMY working with everything else.

 

Then they had a limited amount of time to get the ST finalized for production, & that still wasn't enough time to get AMY to work.

 

The Timeline was something like:

 

Jan 1984 - Tramiel fired from Commodore, Starts his own company and design work on ST

Jun 1984 - buys Atari

Jan 1985 - ST being shown off at CES

Summer 1985 - ST available at retail

 

so yeah, he was demoing the ST 6 mos after buying Atari before showing off ST. That is not a lot of time for product development, you certainly wouldn't want to take risks. And when your chief engineer is ex-Commodore and isn't versed in what Atari R&D had been working on, it's only natural for him to resist that.

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As a fan of Pokey's square sound I would not agree with this.

In opposite to YM It wasn't projected as soundchip, it sounds more metalic, has less bass, and due to low-resolution is out-of-tune in some octaves.

YM has two 8bit I/O ports: A - used for bi-diretional centroincs and B - something like PortB from XL.

 

Pokey is far from perfect, but I'm not a fan of the YM sound at all. I can't think of anything that made it sound good. Even if it was used to play sound samples, they always sounded tinny

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there is a solution, unfortunately only for XL/XE - Sonari: 2 x YM2149F plus Pokey from XL:

 

 

8d03538cd0b725e3.jpg

 

 

Amazing. Yeah, it boggles my mind that there wasn't a Dual YM2149 board for the ST going back to around the time Practical Peripherals released their "Tweety" board. There's Dual YM2149 boards for other computers that used the AY/YM chip. Hell, the Apple II line had Mockinboards with Dual AY chips on them a good 2 or 3 years before the 520ST was even released. And with those, they could have 2 Mockingboards connected together for 4 AY/YM chips.

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I don't see the point of whole this "which soundchip sounds better, why not dual ..." debate. It was not common to have stereo sound in those years in computers. Why was no Dual board for ST then ? Maybe just because was no bigger interest for ... And all it just losing sense when DMA audio is used, or DSP in case of Falcon.

Every product for mass market is heavily with lot of compromisses. For instance, I would like instead some better soundchip better graphic capability. Like more video modes. But that would increase price, of course. Some would like better keyboard and so on ...

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I don't see the point of whole this "which soundchip sounds better, why not dual ..." debate. It was not common to have stereo sound in those years in computers. Why was no Dual board for ST then ? Maybe just because was no bigger interest for ... And all it just losing sense when DMA audio is used, or DSP in case of Falcon.

Every product for mass market is heavily with lot of compromisses. For instance, I would like instead some better soundchip better graphic capability. Like more video modes. But that would increase price, of course. Some would like better keyboard and so on ...

 

There was an interest in better audio. The Tweety Board sold well. And folks with disposable money bought the Roland MT-32 just to play Sierra's titles with the best audio available...

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