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Atari keyboard to USB

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no hands, no cookies

 

expecting everyone will do something for you while you yawn is pretty amusing way of going through life, isn't it?

Congratulations, it's pricks like you in the Atari community who killed ALL my Atari based projects.

 

Thanks for confirming what a sad bunch the worst of you are. I am not lazy I work 65 hours a week and I don't have the time OR equipment to do anything like that.

 

So much for helpful fellow Atarians

 

FFS - you do know how much Candle has contributed to the community right? Look at all the work on VBXE for a start, simple stereo, io board, upcoming 1mb board... When I had issues with a VBXE board, candle spent ages in chat and PM trying to get it going and then took it back and fixed the board for free, even paying the return postage to the UK.

 

Seriously my friend, you're accusing the wrong guy. It's people like candle who make this community what it is.

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Meh... Never mind Candle's amazing projects. We now have someone in our midst who can offer very sophisticated FLV transcoding, highly optimized Flash video, and an unlimited YouTube Account.

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no hands, no cookies

 

expecting everyone will do something for you while you yawn is pretty amusing way of going through life, isn't it?

Congratulations, it's pricks like you in the Atari community who killed ALL my Atari based projects.

 

Thanks for confirming what a sad bunch the worst of you are. I am not lazy I work 65 hours a week and I don't have the time OR equipment to do anything like that.

 

So much for helpful fellow Atarians

 

FFS - you do know how much Candle has contributed to the community right? Look at all the work on VBXE for a start, simple stereo, io board, upcoming 1mb board... When I had issues with a VBXE board, candle spent ages in chat and PM trying to get it going and then took it back and fixed the board for free, even paying the return postage to the UK.

 

Seriously my friend, you're accusing the wrong guy. It's people like candle who make this community what it is.

 

Well as you can see being accused of being lazy or expecting other people to do stuff for me for free (offered to pay for the service because I don't even have a desk let alone a soldering iron right now) is not quite the same level of help ANYONE in this thread offered me compared to your experience.

 

I am glad your experience is better but hey as far as this place goes people generally are not that helpful AND word it in an offensive and derogatory manner to be frank. Seems a common thing.

 

Flashjazzcat's comment says it all really. Maybe because it doesn't involve an assembler or a soldering iron people here think what they know of what I do is a waste of time but then I do it for myself and the daily appreciative messages from people finding long lost videos of games nobody else has bothered to record is why I still do that too even though it takes 25% of my weekends.

 

4x oversampled quality on a par with DIVX/XVID DVDrips on Youtube is nice to have but it's only an enabler for the technology used by a website project which needed that sort of quality as part of it. Some articles for ST (like the piggyback 1mb RAM guide for 520ST/STM owners was one as was 16mhz/8mhz gaming) and making an 800XL PC was another thing I hoped to feature on the site. I have a half finished A8 equivalent of the C= SX64 in my garage too back home with CRT 5" colour screen and detachable keyboard (despite nobody even offering help with that project or even advice or a donor XEGS keyboard).

 

I also gave away what many laptop customizers on ebay would consider trade secrets on here explaining in minute detail how to perfectly customize any retro machine to any colour/texture for next to no money.

 

I'm sorry many people feel you need to earn help on this board.

Edited by oky2000

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Meh... Never mind Candle's amazing projects. We now have someone in our midst who can offer very sophisticated FLV transcoding, highly optimized Flash video, and an unlimited YouTube Account.

 

Comforting to know you are working on a naff GUI project after the tragic death of the friendly helpful technical genius Alison too...*meh*

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Comforting to know you are working on a naff GUI project after the tragic death of the friendly helpful technical genius Alison too...*meh*

I don't remember accusing (the much missed) Techie Alison of being a prick and then starting up a separate thread and opening it by bleating on about how ace my setup is and having yet another oblique and dismissive dig at TA in the process... so your attempt at swingeing irony falls flat on its face, I'm afaid. Nice reference to Alison's untimely death there, by the way...

 

I wonder did you ever elicit assistance from TA or others at the Atari Forum by expressing hair-trigger complaints about how unhelpful people were being and then slagging off the most productive forum members? Surely an effective way to win friends and influence people.

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I finally got around to working on this using Candle's schematic. Here it is so far squeezed onto my tiny breadboard and I'm learning the hard way that there is an art to placement of components. Unfortunately, this is as far as I can go for now since I'm waiting on the crystal and my programmer to arrive.

post-9249-0-59337100-1425418651_thumb.jpg

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I decided to rebuild the circuit on a larger breadboard for testing- here's the rats nest in all its glory. Just about everything except the crystal and the diodes was scrounged from my junk parts drawer ;) I still need to find something to use for the keyboard connector header pins. But I want to get the Atmega programmed first.

BEDA96B5-BC7E-4CA7-880B-D5B8C44F26E1_zps

I found this super-simple avr programmer circuit that uses only a parallel port connector and a few resistors: http://nahians-avr.webs.com/parallelportprogrammer.htm It seems too good to be true (it took less than 2 minutes to build) but I'm not quite sure how power is supposed to get to the Atmega for programming. Perhaps the usb needs to be connected while programming? Any thoughts or suggestions will be most welcome.

 

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Something is still not right as my pc won't recognize the circuit. I've checked, double and triple re-checked my circuit to be sure it is identical to Candle's schematic. I programmed the Atmega using the hex file in Candle's first post, and my programmer says the write was successful and verifies it so there must be a step to this project that I'm missing. A special driver on the PC side? Any hints or suggestions to point me in the right direction will be greatly appreciated.

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Apparently, I'm the only one really interested in this, but for what it's worth, I'll keep posting what limited progress I make, if for no other purpose than to entertain you guys. The first issue I ran into was a bizarre rapidly alternating connect/disconnect cycle when I plugged the device into my Windows 10 pc. Adding a dedicated +5vdc power supply to the circuit fixed that and at least it now shows up in Device Manager, albeit as an "Unknown USB device" with the dreaded "device descriptor failed" error.

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Thanks for the input, Robert. It just so happens that a hagstrom is what I'm using right now ( the LP-24version). I must say that it works great--except it has to be hardwired into the matrix and cannot be physically connected to both the atari and PC at the same time. If I can figure out Candle's idea, I think it it might play well with both systems and would not require significant modifications to the keyboard. But first I have to get it to be recognized by my PC. It seems like no matter what driver I try, windows refuses to talk to it.

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I also gave away what many laptop customizers on ebay would consider trade secrets on here explaining in minute detail how to perfectly customize any retro machine to any colour/texture for next to no money.

 

 

anybody able to point to this? ^

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Ok, some progress... I got the LED to blink when I press keys. It's man vs machine now and I'm determined to figure this out!

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Ok, some progress... I got the LED to blink when I press keys. It's man vs machine now and I'm determined to figure this out!

 

Blinking LED is a good sign. People sometimes don't realize how something like developing and/or troubleshooting a keyboard adapter can really be a big deal. Keep at it, and I'm sure you'll eventually get it all to work :)

 

- Michael

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I lfeel I must be missing something basic- I'm assuming that the hex file Candle posted at the start of this thread already includes the USB firmware, so I shouldn't need a driver on the PC, right?

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I lfeel I must be missing something basic- I'm assuming that the hex file Candle posted at the start of this thread already includes the USB firmware, so I shouldn't need a driver on the PC, right?

Just so you don't think you're going crazy, that was my impression as well. I think somewhere in this thread Candle talks about using something called V-USB software routines which I believe is a firmware version of the USB stack along with standard HID protocol (meant to mimic a standard USB keyboard). Some of the newer PIC and AVR chips have this implemented via hardware. Anyway an HID device dies not need a special driver on the PC side, since this support is already built into modern operating systems.

 

- Michael

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Thanks, Michael. I've been reading up on the v-USB firmware and it seems to have a troubled track record. Looking back at Candle's posts, he hinted at some reliability issues. But one thing I just realized tonight (that I hadn't considered at all so far) is that using the external 12Mz crystal probably requires adjusting one or more fuse bits on the atmega8. Otherwise, it's just going to chug along at 1Mz which will never work for USB. Maybe the hex file does that, but then again, maybe not. Ponyprog allows me to set fuses manually, so I will give that a try and see what happens.

 

If that doesn't work then I think I may have to admit defeat. I might try Candle's approach (reading the pokey lines) with an atmega that has the USB block built in, such as the atmega32u4.

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Has anyone tried doing this in the other direction? Using a USB keyboard on an A8? Every time I do a Google search, I find "how can I use my A8 keyboard on my PC?", but not the other way around. This came up because my 800XL's left shift key was stuck the other day. Tapping it a few times fixed it, but it would be nice to use other keyboards. Also, I love my Apple keyboard and would love to use it with an A8. Similarly, it would be cool to use something like the Logitech G910 with a driver app on the A8.

 

However, I'm only a programmer. I haven't done a lick of hardware since I built Heathkit stuff in the 80s, so I know nothing about how to build a circuit to handle this. Programming and dealing with the matrices? No problem (however, I don't have an EEPROM burner).

 

But if this were possible, I'd love to try and tackle it.

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There is a ps/2 keyboard adapter available (DIY), and AtariMax sells the ABBUC USB cart; not sure if the latter has a keyboard driver available or not.

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Has anyone tried doing this in the other direction? Using a USB keyboard on an A8? Every time I do a Google search, I find "how can I use my A8 keyboard on my PC?", but not the other way around. This came up because my 800XL's left shift key was stuck the other day. Tapping it a few times fixed it, but it would be nice to use other keyboards. Also, I love my Apple keyboard and would love to use it with an A8. Similarly, it would be cool to use something like the Logitech G910 with a driver app on the A8.

 

However, I'm only a programmer. I haven't done a lick of hardware since I built Heathkit stuff in the 80s, so I know nothing about how to build a circuit to handle this. Programming and dealing with the matrices? No problem (however, I don't have an EEPROM burner).

 

But if this were possible, I'd love to try and tackle it.

With an Arduino and an USB host shield, you should be able to pull this off. I was thinking about a USB to PS/2 keyboard converter to connect an USB keyboard to my Transkey, but never came around to it.

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I ran across this while doing research for a way to hook up an Atari keyboard to the EclaireXL. It's interesting how many folks wanted to hook up a PC keyboard to the Atari, but only a couple have attempted (or at least entertained) the reverse.

 

Did anyone else besides Candle ever attempt this? Were you successful, or alternatively where did you run into problems?

 

Part of the info is now gone. (spiflash.org) can't be accessed at this time, at least from my system. 

 

 

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4 hours ago, Larry said:

I ran across this while doing research for a way to hook up an Atari keyboard to the EclaireXL. It's interesting how many folks wanted to hook up a PC keyboard to the Atari, but only a couple have attempted (or at least entertained) the reverse. 

 

I have ordered a keyboard adapter from this guy:

http://blog.tynemouthsoftware.co.uk/2016/08/atari-65xe-usb-keyboard-and-joystick-with-raspberry-pi3.html

but it seems to be out of stock now :(

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1 hour ago, TheMontezuma said:

I have ordered a keyboard adapter from this guy:

http://blog.tynemouthsoftware.co.uk/2016/08/atari-65xe-usb-keyboard-and-joystick-with-raspberry-pi3.html

but it seems to be out of stock now :(

With the eclaire XL, this adapter would be an excellent companion for those who want a true ATARI keyboard. Would be nice to see if he would be interested in having more made.

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Candle's solution ultimately defeated me so I gave up on it.  For a while I played around with an arduino-based adapter and that sort of worked (my PC recognized all of the keypresses) but I couldn't figure out an effective de-bounce routine-- typing was either excruciatingly slowly or I got a zillion of each letter at a time.  I'm sure someone with better coding skills could have easily fixed that.  

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6 hours ago, TheMontezuma said:

I have ordered a keyboard adapter from this guy:

http://blog.tynemouthsoftware.co.uk/2016/08/atari-65xe-usb-keyboard-and-joystick-with-raspberry-pi3.html

but it seems to be out of stock now :(

 

He wrote to me saying that he was unable to find a suitable source for the mylar keyboard connector for his device.  He also had some issues with customers who had difficulty in attaching the mylar to the connector that he used.  He has stopped making them now.  Sounded pretty final.  :(

Rats!

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