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FPGA Based Videogame System

Interest in an FPGA Videogame System  

661 members have voted

  1. 1. I would pay....

  2. 2. I Would Like Support for...

  3. 3. Games Should Run From...

    • SD Card / USB Memory Sticks
    • Original Cartridges
    • Hopes and Dreams
  4. 4. The Video Inteface Should be...



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Wanted to echo the support for Turbo Grafx 16 / PC Engine. If you can make that happen that would be incredible. It has an amazing game library and one that is largely overlooked due to the massive success of the MegaDrive / Genesis and Super Fami / SNES. Truly some great gems in the PC Engine lineup, and from a nostalgia factor probably my favorite system from that era.

 

As far as bug trackers. I could set up a Jira instance, but I don't think they offer any "free" version at all. Is Bugzilla is actually free?

 

As a really low tech alternative, wouldn't a shared google sheet with appropriate drop down fields get us halfway there? If you do a google search for issue tracking or bug tracking template there are quite a few out there already.

 

 

Jira doesn't have a free version anymore, but there is a 10 users for $10(onetime) version(practically free).

 

Bugzilla is free to use in that it's open source maintained by Mozilla, I've personally used it and set it up before, would recommend. Mantis is also a great free alternative here.

 

If roaring chicken or anyone else doesn't want to jump on it first, I'd be more than happy to setup an instance of Bugzilla or Mantis on one of my servers for kevtris & the community to use.

 

Thanks a lot Kevtris for this amazing custom firmware.

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I don't know much about them. I did a quick google search but didn't find much information about what is inside it or how it works. Are they available for purchase separately?

 

I could mail you one of mine? :)

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I have not worked with Bugzilla in over 10 years, and then only briefly. So Chocobro I think you are a better fit for this. I will certainly help with logging new issues, etc once it gets up and running.

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I'm very excited about all this news! I'll be in line for an Nt mini once it shakes out. I don't care a bit about the 16-bit consoles with their easily available component and RGB cables. I've been playing the RF-only 8-bit systems through a VCR since forever. And now I'm getting an all-one-box for them with fancy video scaling, analog or digital output, adapters for carts and controllers, and best of all the hardware is already out and not some vaporware dream? Awesome :)

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Sorry to keep derailing this topic with the NT Mini but does anyone know what the max SD card size the NT Mini supports (or more specifically with Kevtris's new firmware)? I could not find any information on that on the Analogue site or documentation or in Kevtris's readme.

 

Apologies if this has been answered already.

Edited by roaringchicken

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Kevtris,

 

Admittedly I haven't read all 44 pages of backlog but I read quite a few. There's a market segment you may not have considered for some of the analog outputs. The arcade hobbyist could have a field day if there were a way to slap a jamma harness and/or jvs interface on there. In fact you already offer a pc10 palette option in your nes core. I could imagine this helping preserve pc10, nss, and even neogeo. It would be a neat idea to simulate a pc10 with some other unofficial games too.

 

Just a thought / consideration for further marketing of your dream box. Keep up the fantastic work. Im saving up for an nt mini and can't wait to experience it!

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If I'm not mistaken, JAMMA would just require a cartridge adaptor and some simple core to upscale the RGB signal to HDMI? While you are at it, you could also have a niche making it an HDMI upscaler for various video formats (also via cart adapter).

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Sorry to keep derailing this topic with the NT Mini but does anyone know what the max SD card size the NT Mini supports (or more specifically with Kevtris's new firmware)? I could not find any information on that on the Analogue site or documentation or in Kevtris's readme.

 

Apologies if this has been answered already.

I just purchased an NT Mini myself, and I'd like to know this too, while my unit is on its way.

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I just purchased an NT Mini myself, and I'd like to know this too, while my unit is on its way.

 

Well it's FAT32 so it's going to be 32gb as far as I know.

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I ran into a bug today while using the jail break on the analogue nt mini. After about 2 and half hours of playing the audio became very distorted. Even if I changed the game the issue would follow onto the next game. I power cycled the system and issue went away. I decided to see if I could replicated the issue. I again played for around 2 and half hours and the issue happened again. This time I decided to try an actual cart to see if the issue would still be there. Indeed it was. Anyone else experience this ?

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re: the bug tracker doodad, thanks for the info, I will look around. I might have something I can use.

 

Sorry to keep derailing this topic with the NT Mini but does anyone know what the max SD card size the NT Mini supports (or more specifically with Kevtris's new firmware)? I could not find any information on that on the Analogue site or documentation or in Kevtris's readme.

 

Apologies if this has been answered already.

 

It is FAT32 so 32GB is maximum, however I'm fairly sure (but have not tested it) that you could use a 64 gig card if you use a 3rd party program to format it FAT32 (since windows has a hard limit of 32 gigs- they want you to use exfat for anything larger because then they can charge people like me huge amounts of money to use their new disk format.)

 

Kevtris,

Admittedly I haven't read all 44 pages of backlog but I read quite a few. There's a market segment you may not have considered for some of the analog outputs. The arcade hobbyist could have a field day if there were a way to slap a jamma harness and/or jvs interface on there. In fact you already offer a pc10 palette option in your nes core. I could imagine this helping preserve pc10, nss, and even neogeo. It would be a neat idea to simulate a pc10 with some other unofficial games too.

Just a thought / consideration for further marketing of your dream box. Keep up the fantastic work. Im saving up for an nt mini and can't wait to experience it!

 

You could theoretically make a JAMMA adapter I think- it just has to convert JAMMA button presses to the serial button input the NES uses, i.e. some shift registers. Taking money though might be a bit trickier. I added an RGB option that makes it emit separate H and V synchs though, which is what arcade monitors like so no synch splitter is required. I *do* have Vs. support in there right now but I think porting it over broke most of it, I was going to make sure it worked but haven't had a chance to fix it all. You used to be able to hit the L and R triggers to add money and there's a dipswitch menu already in the settings for the NES core. I have support already for all of the Vs. palettes but somehow it broke. I use the nes 2.0 header spec to enable Vs. stuff.

 

 

I ran into a bug today while using the jail break on the analogue nt mini. After about 2 and half hours of playing the audio became very distorted. Even if I changed the game the issue would follow onto the next game. I power cycled the system and issue went away. I decided to see if I could replicated the issue. I again played for around 2 and half hours and the issue happened again. This time I decided to try an actual cart to see if the issue would still be there. Indeed it was. Anyone else experience this ?

 

This is the first I have heard of that. Sure it wasn't something like turning some of the audio channels way up in the audio menu? That can cause really loud/distorted audio. A power cycle would fix it because the levels got reset. If I could hear it then I might have a better idea what happened.

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This is the first I have heard of that. Sure it wasn't something like turning some of the audio channels way up in the audio menu? That can cause really loud/distorted audio. A power cycle would fix it because the levels got reset. If I could hear it then I might have a better idea what happened.

I did not change any of the settings. This issue would happen during the game without any other settings being change. I can attempt to video capture this tomorrow.

Edited by Jaydie1

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can also just use github's built-in issue tracker

 

 

Honestly this is probably the easiest solution, start a repo for all your projects(even if you don't share the code), and then we can post issues against them if we find bugs.

 

On that note, @kevtris, how open is the system currently? In the way it's currently setup can I program my own cores and use the firmware upgrade process to flash them in safely just targeting the fpga chip(without risking the original functionality). I realized it'd be kinda fun to use it as a decent devboard with a lot of fun peripheral options(hdmi/analog, controllers, sound etc), the stuff that's normally tedious to program yourself in verilog/vhdl on random boards(or pay yuck license fees to access premade modules) but could be fun to piggyback off of on an existing design to make game-centric circuits that I could share with the community.

 

I haven't looked at it seriously, but it'd be nice to know if sharing some of the info to facilitate that is feasible, or if I'd need to basically reverse engineer it to do what I'm thinking.

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I got an NES Classic today. I don't mean to derail the thread though, BUT I can at least say the $500 is gonna be worth it for a lot of people wanting to get the NT Mini and having the money for it xD

The NES Classic has input lag that's not bad, but I can't beat Mr. Dream in it at least without having to retry lots of times, when I can do it from the first try on NES and on the AVS.

It also, strangely, has more sound lag than image lag. So the sound plays delayed by a bit.

The 4:3 also gives me bad uneven pixels. And the CRT option is blurry, though you can sorta get used to it.

This is 4:3 on the NES Classic... notice the horizontal uneven pixels?

https://s5.postimg.org/8zfzgsc1z/4_3_NES_Classic.jpg

 

Here's the difference between the NT Mini and Classic, playing punchout... the NT Mini is on the left, Classic on the right. NT Mini is using the 4x, but I've since changed it to the 4.5x, and the windows size is the same as the classic. I need to do a newer video because the punch speed (button presses) weren't timed the same.

 

Edited by F34R

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Here's the difference between the NT Mini and Classic, playing punchout... the NT Mini is on the left, Classic on the right. NT Mini is using the 4x, but I've since changed it to the 4.5x, and the windows size is the same as the classic. I need to do a newer video because the punch speed (button presses) weren't timed the same.

....

 

Most striking difference to me is the uneven/inconsistent line widths with the grid patterns on the NES classic. Trying to demonstrate input lag with this type of comparison is pointless because you'll never get the button presses at exactly the same time. The input lag of the NES classic is probably ~100ms. Also the display + whatever else you have in the rest of the output chain (eg. capture device) potentially adds lag too. The wireless controller might add a bit of lag from what I've read.

 

A much better comparison would be side scrolling in a game like Zelda 2 (in a town). And you'll definitely want the Nt mini in either 4x by 5x or 5x by 6x (ideal IMO) scaling. 4.5x is non-integer and will result in some issues.

Edited by cacophony

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It is FAT32 so 32GB is maximum, however I'm fairly sure (but have not tested it) that you could use a 64 gig card if you use a 3rd party program to format it FAT32 (since windows has a hard limit of 32 gigs- they want you to use exfat for anything larger because then they can charge people like me huge amounts of money to use their new disk format.)

 

I see people talking about formatting 128GB and 256GB SD cards with FAT32 using the same approach, but is there any point? A 32GB card should be able to store every game ever released for every platform the NT Mini will ever support and then some.

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I have a few bugs to report for the Analogue NT Mini Jailbreak Firmware using the SD Card loading.

 

US / JP Games:

*Holy Diver: Graphics seem to be wrapping about 1/4 of the way into whatever direction you move resulting in block appearing where they are not.

*Kaijuu Monogatari: Blue Screen on boot.

*Kid Niki 2: Freezes after intro.

*Kid Niki 3: Flickering textures.

 

FDS Games:

*Battery Err L02 on any FDS game that boots up with the "Nintendo Please set Disk Card" screen.

 

Hacks:

*FF7 Advent Children Complete - The start screen actually loads which is more than flash carts can do but when you hit new game the game seems to loop back to the start screen.

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I'll let kevtris officially address this but I would withhold reporting bugs when using rom hacks; many rom hacks were written for use on emulators which dont have accurate timing like real hardware

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A 32GB card should be able to store every game ever released for every platform the NT Mini will ever support and then some.

 

Well if Turbo or Megadrive ISOs ever get to be an option that may change. Granted I don't understand enough of the NT mini except that kev said he could unleash some additional console support.. so just dreaming here :P

 

For what it's worth, this is kind of the rough needed minimal SD card sizes for "complete" console collections (after pruning duplicates, etc.) I put together for my Everdrive carts. GBA took up nearly 25 gigs on an SD card since I had a 32 gig already and was just too lazy to prune that one :lol:

 

NES 1 gig
Turbo hucards 1 gig
Gameboy 2 gigs
Genesis + sms ~3 gigs
SNES 4-8 gigs
GBA 25 gigs
Edited by NE146
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Well if Turbo or Megadrive ISOs ever get to be an option that may change. Hey I can dream can't I. icon_smile.gif

 

For what it's worth, this is kind of the rough needed minimal SD card sizes for "complete" console collections (after pruning duplicates, etc.) I put together for my Everdrive carts. GBA took up nearly 25 gigs on an SD card since I had a 32 gig already and was just too lazy to prune that one icon_lol.gif

 

NES 1 gig
Turbo hucards 1 gig
Gameboy 2 gigs
Genesis + sms ~3 gigs
SNES 4-8 gigs
GBA 25 gigs

 

 

The NT Mini is limited to supporting 8-bit consoles, with some possible pseudo-16 consoles like the PC-Engine and Intellivision thrown in. The PC-Engine CD would be unlikely due to the extra memory requirements. The PC-Engine library is probably the largest, anything else would be smaller. Most of the console libraries would be very small: the Atari 2600 might have a lot of games, but most of them were 4KB. Many of the consoles supported are obscure and only have a handful of games to begin with.

Edited by Guspaz

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re: the bug tracker doodad, thanks for the info, I will look around. I might have something I can use.

 

 

[...]

 

I think it's also crucial to create a guideline ("read this first") on how to report bugs affecting your projects properly. This is to avoid invalid and duplicate reports. For example, the guideline might instruct people to:

  • report exactly what version of the game they're playing including region and revision info
  • include hardware they're using (in the case of the Hi Def NES or Nt mini peripherals)
  • provide TV model
  • test the game on the original hardware (whenever possible)
  • write what settings were used
  • use only good ROM dumps for testing (maybe only No-Intro and in some instances goodset ROMs should be allowed when reporting?)
  • format their SD cards in proper way; correct file system, allocation size, etc. (BTW, kevtris, what do you think about SD Card Formatter? Some SD card manufacturers strongly recommend it.)
  • what SD card to use
  • avoid situations when data on the SD card might get corrupted like forgetting to safely remove the SD card
  • clean cartridges before reporting (cleaning tips included, some people don't know about the eraser method. :P One more question, does the Nt mini require cleaner carts than the original NES? I've heard that games which work on the NES, sometimes need cleaning before running them on the mini.
  • read what the limitations of FPGAs (included in the guideline) are, so that they won't keep asking for something impossible
  • etc.

There are actually bug trackers which force the user to fill certain text fields before clicking the "report" button. This increases validity ratio.

Edited by retro_fan

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Can the Analogue Nt Mini output HDMI and analog video at the same time? Because if it does, you can use the composite signal from the analog port to implement this mod without any further tweaking :

 

 

Also, what style of composite video does the Nt Mini output? Is it the jagged three-line staircased (sharper but HD unfriendly) video of a true NES or is it like the NESRGB's straighter but softer composite video?

Edited by Great Hierophant
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You could theoretically make a JAMMA adapter I think- it just has to convert JAMMA button presses to the serial button input the NES uses, i.e. some shift registers. Taking money though might be a bit trickier. I added an RGB option that makes it emit separate H and V synchs though, which is what arcade monitors like so no synch splitter is required. I *do* have Vs. support in there right now but I think porting it over broke most of it, I was going to make sure it worked but haven't had a chance to fix it all. You used to be able to hit the L and R triggers to add money and there's a dipswitch menu already in the settings for the NES core. I have support already for all of the Vs. palettes but somehow it broke. I use the nes 2.0 header spec to enable Vs. stuff.

Oh I was talking about the zimba. I see the NT as a home thing anyway. It was more a thought of an easy way to get a larger batch order to bring costs down by expanding the market slightly and a justification for keeping the analog outputs.

 

Hope to have enough for an NT next paycheck regardless though :).

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