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kevtris

FPGA Based Videogame System

Interest in an FPGA Videogame System  

637 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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I am not so sure if the two functionalities would add considerable cost if you think of some benefits to producing one (more) mass produced unit.  I think yes, there is additional cost, but how much?  Would the same FPGA have been used?  How much extra R&D was done if they were going to do both anyways?  Is mass producing this unit twice as much basically going to make manufacturing cheaper?

 

It's hard to say... I don't think we have enough info to go on to make that conclusion.

Are you talking to me?

 

All I am saying is that there is no benefit to one device supporting both consoles if you can't freely switch them between consoles... so why not design it to be switchable by installing console-specific adapters in each console the main hardware a module that can be removed through the lid?

 

As you rightly point out, the cost savings for having a Saturn and Dreamcast variant would be minimal and thus you'd have two different ~$200 ODEs, but there is still little reason to have them as one device when you can't freely switch without disassembling two consoles, always effectively disabling one (unless you do even MORE work when switching).

 

Making it modular and removable through the lid just makes sense. Even if it adds extra cost it GREATLY increases the normally-wasted utility of it supporting two consoles. It also opens the possibility of supporting additional consoles, true to it's name: Multi Optical Drive Emulator.

 

Perhaps they can double-dip and make a sort of "MODE Pro." atariage_icon_wink.gif

 

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I would have to assume that it's going to save them money in manufacturing by having the device support both systems. If you need one for both systems buy two. If you need it for one or the other, then just buy one. I personally have a GDEMU and had been waiting on the Satiator, so I just ordered one. But truth be told, I could see myself buying another for DC as well. The menu is a lot nicer and the ability to use a real HDD is nice. I guess in a perfect world it would be cool for it to be plug and play for both systems, but I don't really know how realistic that is, and for the amount of money I've already spent in this hobby, I'll just buy two rather than swapping things out. 

 

Edit: Also, if the Satiator ever does actually come out, then I'll have the option to buy that if I want and then just pop this into the DC. Nice option to have.

Edited by jamon1567
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I would have to assume that it's going to save them money in manufacturing by having the device support both systems. If you need one for both systems buy two. If you need it for one or the other, then just buy one. I personally have a GDEMU and had been waiting on the Satiator, so I just ordered one. But truth be told, I could see myself buying another for DC as well. The menu is a lot nicer and the ability to use a real HDD is nice. I guess in a perfect world it would be cool for it to be plug and play for both systems, but I don't really know how realistic that is, and for the amount of money I've already spent in this hobby, I'll just buy two rather than swapping things out.   

Edit: Also, if the Satiator ever does actually come out, then I'll have the option to buy that if I want and then just pop this into the DC. Nice option to have.

 

At least the Satiator will still have a market since it will be the only one that is plug and play installation and preserves the functionality of the original disc drive. atariage_icon_smile.gif

 

 

 

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I picked up a MODE as soon as I could. TBH, if I didn't already have a USB-GDROM I would have picked up two so that I could do my Saturn AND my Dreamcast at the same time. You know how much of a relief it is to have a company like Terraonion doing this? I know that they're charging more than the Fenrir/Rhea/Phoebe/GDEMU/etc., but at the same time the feature set looks great and now people have a reliable solution for both consoles. Nothing bums me out like discovering a bug with my USB-GDROM, and then not wanting to contact the developer because I have no idea if a bug-fix would reinstate the time bomb that used to be in the old firmwares. At the end of the day, $100USD is pennies over the lifetime of the system if I'm getting good support. 

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1 hour ago, Drunk_Caterpillar said:

I picked up a MODE as soon as I could. TBH, if I didn't already have a USB-GDROM I would have picked up two so that I could do my Saturn AND my Dreamcast at the same time. You know how much of a relief it is to have a company like Terraonion doing this? I know that they're charging more than the Fenrir/Rhea/Phoebe/GDEMU/etc., but at the same time the feature set looks great and now people have a reliable solution for both consoles. Nothing bums me out like discovering a bug with my USB-GDROM, and then not wanting to contact the developer because I have no idea if a bug-fix would reinstate the time bomb that used to be in the old firmwares. At the end of the day, $100USD is pennies over the lifetime of the system if I'm getting good support. 

I have a USB-GDROM as well and I've have no issues at all with it. Never ran into a bug.  It's been perfect, but I will say I was a little miffed when I heard it had a time-bomb.  MNEMO has come out to say he removed the time bomb, but no one can really confirm that it's really been taken out?  It's only what he said?  I haven't had any issues at all so really only want MODE for Saturn. So far my USB GDROM runs mint for Dreamcast.

 

The box art and 100% compatibility has sold me on MODE Saturn.  I preordered. one

 

While the Satiator is a great plug and play I think sales will suffer because of MODE's release.

 

 

July is going to be great.  Analogue Nt Mini V2 and MODE. 🤘

Edited by RetrogamerX

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24 minutes ago, RetrogamerX said:

I have a USB-GDROM as well and I've have no issues at all with it. Never ran into a bug.  It's been perfect, but I will say I was a little miffed when I heard it had a time-bomb.  MNEMO has come out to say he removed the time bomb, but no one can really confirm that it's really been taken out?  It's only what he said?  I haven't had any issues at all so really only want MODE for Saturn. So far my USB GDROM runs mint for Dreamcast.

Honestly, I have no idea what to believe. I have only had a few sporadic issues with my USB-GDROM but I always wonder how much I can trust someone that hid a firmware time bomb in the first place. Either way, I'm in the same boat; NtMiniv2 and MODE on the way! Kinda forgot the v2 was coming in July too...

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I recently got and installed the USB-GDROM, and it works fine for me.  I had heard horror stories about interacting with the guy that makes/sells it, but he was fine in my case.

 

I am concerned about the possibility of a hidden time bomb firmware, but the alternative is simply not an option for me because I'm not willing to waste my time playing the "order window" game just to buy one.

 

I am not 100% happy with the Super SD System 3... my unit wasn't among the first batch so it's not horrible, but it's from a batch prior to the final fixes so it's imperfect.

 

I am, however, 100% happy with the Mega SD and I'm sure MODE will be great.  I'll definitely pick one up for my Saturn once it's available; it's nice also to have another ODE option for DC in case something does goes wrong with USB-GDROM.

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Not defending FW time bombs or anything, but it's not like Terra Onion didn't play similar firmware security games with Neo SD updates and the like (require registration to even download; update is tied to your specific device; etc). If they folded and you weren't up to date you were could've been stuck with that Neo SD FW they originally launched with that was glitchier than the pre-launch Darksoft Neo Multi everyone complained about.

Granted, being stuck with an older/glitchier version is better than being stuck with something totally non-functional.

There is little reason for USB-GDROM to ever reinstate the FW lockout since the Dreamcast ODE market is suddenly much more crowded and there isn't as much market pressure to clone his less-desirable product. That's really been the case since GDEMU was cloned.

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I don’t have time to google it right now, bc I gotta get back to work, so forgive me please – I’m about to ask a couple of potentially dumb questions.

Was on Terra Onion’s site, potentially gonna buy a MegaSD and stumbled across MODE.  I’m interested, but –

 

1)      Is this a hardware mod, meaning I’d have to install it (somewhat permanently) in the system?  Or is it a plug n’ play type of gadget requiring not installation?  Like flash carts, external drives, etc?

2)      If it requires installation, does the existing drive remain intact and functional, or do things need removed/replaced?

3)      Any soldering required?

4)      Final dumb question for now --- If it’s plug and play, do I just need 1 MODE and can swap back n forth between Dreamcast and Saturn?  Or would I need 1 for each system?

 

I know these are probably outlined on their site if I had time to research, which I hope to do after work.

 

Thanks in advance!

 

 

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I don’t have time to google it right now, bc I gotta get back to work, so forgive me please – I’m about to ask a couple of potentially dumb questions.
Was on Terra Onion’s site, potentially gonna buy a MegaSD and stumbled across MODE.  I’m interested, but –
 
1)      Is this a hardware mod, meaning I’d have to install it (somewhat permanently) in the system?  Or is it a plug n’ play type of gadget requiring not installation?  Like flash carts, external drives, etc?
2)      If it requires installation, does the existing drive remain intact and functional, or do things need removed/replaced?
3)      Any soldering required?
4)      Final dumb question for now --- If it’s plug and play, do I just need 1 MODE and can swap back n forth between Dreamcast and Saturn?  Or would I need 1 for each system?
 
I know these are probably outlined on their site if I had time to research, which I hope to do after work.
 
Thanks in advance!
 
 
It's a drive replacement. You have to take the system apart but the old drive simply unplugs and the MODE simply plugs in its place. Switching between Saturn and Dreamcast requires taking them both apart. :(

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49 minutes ago, malrak said:

I don’t have time to google it right now, bc I gotta get back to work, so forgive me please – I’m about to ask a couple of potentially dumb questions.

Was on Terra Onion’s site, potentially gonna buy a MegaSD and stumbled across MODE.  I’m interested, but –

 

1)      Is this a hardware mod, meaning I’d have to install it (somewhat permanently) in the system?  Or is it a plug n’ play type of gadget requiring not installation?  Like flash carts, external drives, etc?

2)      If it requires installation, does the existing drive remain intact and functional, or do things need removed/replaced?

3)      Any soldering required?

4)      Final dumb question for now --- If it’s plug and play, do I just need 1 MODE and can swap back n forth between Dreamcast and Saturn?  Or would I need 1 for each system?

 

I know these are probably outlined on their site if I had time to research, which I hope to do after work.

 

Thanks in advance!

 

 

1. The connectors and ribbons in the Dreamcast and Saturn probably aren't rated for that many pulls or insertions, so when I install mine I'm leaving it as is. It's definitely a little more strenuous than using a flashcart.
2. I mean, you're not destroying your existing optical drives to install the MODE so you always have the option of going back if you want to, but the MODE is meant to replace your original disc drive.

3. No soldering required, that I know about anyway. Even if there were I bet it'd be for something optional, like a soft-reset key combination or whatever.

4. I see people really focussing on the answer for this question, which is that you COULD swap this ODE between consoles but it's not really the way you're supposed to use it. Think of MODE like a Q-Tip: you can use a single Q-Tip for cleaning your ears or cleaning out gunky old NES carts, but I probably wouldn't use the same Q-Tip for both.

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5 hours ago, malrak said:

I don’t have time to google it right now, bc I gotta get back to work, so forgive me please – I’m about to ask a couple of potentially dumb questions.

Was on Terra Onion’s site, potentially gonna buy a MegaSD and stumbled across MODE.  I’m interested, but –

 

1)      Is this a hardware mod, meaning I’d have to install it (somewhat permanently) in the system?  Or is it a plug n’ play type of gadget requiring not installation?  Like flash carts, external drives, etc?

2)      If it requires installation, does the existing drive remain intact and functional, or do things need removed/replaced?

3)      Any soldering required?

4)      Final dumb question for now --- If it’s plug and play, do I just need 1 MODE and can swap back n forth between Dreamcast and Saturn?  Or would I need 1 for each system?

 

I know these are probably outlined on their site if I had time to research, which I hope to do after work.

 

Thanks in advance!

 

 

 

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If you install this on one of the consoles first, play through the entire library in a few years and then move it to the other console and play that library, you really got your money's worth 😆

 

Seriously, if compatibility is at least as good as it is on Phoebe/Rhea for Saturn and USB-GDROM (which is slightly higher than GDEMU), then this device is definitely worth considering given what it brings uniquely to the table (better file format support and better UI).

 

One question I have is whether these devices would preserve the ability to use the original disc player interface of each system. Those are nice to keep from a purist perspective, and they also allow to play music CDs, or play back game discs as music CDs to listen to "hidden" messages on some of the audio tracks (usually funny messages by the cast telling you not to use the disc on music CD players).

 

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Should this TO stuff should perhaps be in another thread?

It was just announced in the Terra Onion "FPGA Direct" event. Whether Kevtris intended for this thread to encompass other FPGA game consoles or not (MiSTer, AVS, etc), the title seemed to invite that and it became the official all-things FPGA gaming thread for AtariAge. atariage_icon_smile.gif

 

Granted, this is not really a game console, but their last FPGA Direct essentially was (Mega SD and Neo Geo CD support for Neo SD Pro). The Sega CD hardware is essentially a game console even if it requires a Sega Genesis.

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Yup and personally this is the only thread I have the time to follow on Atariage.  I’m sure some of us still follow it in the hopes the original Zimba 3000 idea will ever see the light of day. But most of us follow it because we are all fans of FPGA being the best clone solution to playing video games at their most accurate.  Kevtris started this thread a while back now... and it’s evolved and grown in ways an internet thread often does but I think in some cool informative ways.  
 

Regarding the original topic...In a funny way, I already have somewhat of a Zimba 3000. It is 3 meters by 2 meters in size, contains several components (made by Analogue, Terra Onion, Krikzz and others) and is basically all the FPGA stuff I’ve purchased over the seven or so years I’ve been aware of this tech. It’s literally a large stand for my TV with glass and behind the glass are my several FPGA systems all with their own EverDrive style devices. So when the actual Zimba 3000 gets made, it’ll be like going from one of those giant university computers to a handheld iPhone or something! Hehehe.  But I’ve got a little love for this setup. It’s looks pretty slick and plays all the games I’ve ever wanted. I honestly don’t “need” anything else... ok maybe that Analogue pocket.... but seriously, I’m so good now thanks to the many developers producing great equipment.  Having more choices is great too... from the Analogue Super NT all the way to the open source Mister to the handheld Analogue Pocket.... it’s still exciting to me all the different ways to play the games we love. Hell I have a CRT sitting right next to my “Zimba 3000” setup hehe... all connected with original consoles!  My friends, when they come over all prefer the big screen FPGA setup and cannot understand why I have a huge CRT right next to it but I just love having options I guess.
 

I love how this thread has taken all kinds of twists and turns, but it’s always nice to be reminded of how it started. With a genius engineer contemplating one FPGA device to rule em all and play all the games from the past. Still a really cool concept and when/if that happens I’ll be first in line of course!  But for now, I’m very happy with all that has been released and look forward to what the future brings!

 

 

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This thread was at its best when Kevtris was participating and setting the record straight about the consoles he worked on. Mainly the NT Mini and Super NT. A lot of people, including Kevtris essentially migrated to the Classic Gaming Discord Server, around the time of the Mega SG launch. Discord essentially serves the purpose of this thread and then some, with access to the devs of other great retro products too. I highly recommend it. I still check on this thread every so often, but it ran its course a while ago. For as much good information is in here, there is just as much off topic nonsense, false information, and internet flame wars stuff. When something gets this big, I guess that is inevitable. It is there on Discord too, but it can be filtered out.

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This thread was at its best when Kevtris was participating and setting the record straight about the consoles he worked on. Mainly the NT Mini and Super NT. A lot of people, including Kevtris essentially migrated to the Classic Gaming Discord Server, around the time of the Mega SG launch. Discord essentially serves the purpose of this thread and then some, with access to the devs of other great retro products too. I highly recommend it. I still check on this thread every so often, but it ran its course a while ago. For as much good information is in here, there is just as much off topic nonsense, false information, and internet flame wars stuff. When something gets this big, I guess that is inevitable. It is there on Discord too, but it can be filtered out.
When I first installed Discord I was absolutely horrified at how bad it was.

First, it boots with your PC by default... for no reason. Second, it makes you wait while it spends an inordinate about of time with a useless, disruptive, and uninformative splash/loading screen even when you had no intention of using it (literally booting to do something else). Third, it seems decidedly inferior/less-suited to this kind of "public archive discussion/info" thing than existing forums. Last: IRC.

How this disgustingly bloated crap ever replaced message boards and IRC is beyond me.
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21 minutes ago, CZroe said:

When I first installed Discord I was absolutely horrified at how bad it was.

First, it boots with your PC by default... for no reason. Second, it makes you wait while it spends an inordinate about of time with a useless, disruptive, and uninformative splash/loading screen even when you had no intention of using it (literally booting to do something else). Third, it seems decidedly inferior/less-suited to this kind of "public archive discussion/info" thing than existing forums. Last: IRC.

How this disgustingly bloated crap ever replaced message boards and IRC is beyond me.

I never really used IRC back in the day, but Discord seems to have replaced it. It is updated regularly and functions as is should, at least on Windows 10. How it works under the hood is beyond me. No matter. I don't think Discord completely replaced message boards/forums. Both have their places and offer advantages over the other. Unfortunately if you want access to your favorite retro developers and other hobbyist brethren, Discord seems to be a necessary evil :(

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1 hour ago, CZroe said:

First, it boots with your PC by default... for no reason. Second, it makes you wait while it spends an inordinate about of time with a useless, disruptive, and uninformative splash/loading screen even when you had no intention of using it (literally booting to do something else). Third, it seems decidedly inferior/less-suited to this kind of "public archive discussion/info" thing than existing forums. Last: IRC.

How this disgustingly bloated crap ever replaced message boards and IRC is beyond me.

Why install the shitty discord application at all? Just run it in a browser https://www.discord.com/app    Works 100% fine and you just visit it whenever you feel like it. :)

 

And it hasn't replaced IRC amongst those who count..  believe me. 😜

 

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1 hour ago, NE146 said:

Why install the shitty discord application at all? Just run it in a browser https://www.discord.com/app    Works 100% fine and you just visit it whenever you feel like it. :)

A little off topic but yeah, I never plan on installing Discord or Zoom and will happily use the web app versions.

On (meta) topic though, I think that the ecosystem of FPGA gaming products is so big that threads like this will eventually need to be closed so that new ones can open. Having one thread to discuss every single FPGA product is a little daunting for anyone just arriving on the forum, and is definitely a bummer to sort through if you're looking for discussion about a particular piece of hardware. I mean, at this point we've got:

- FPGA flash carts
- FPGA optical drive emulators
- FPGA reproduction consoles
- FPGA development hardware that doubles for multi-console simulation
- FPGA video output boards (e.g. UltraHDMI, DCDigital, Hi-Def NES, etc)

And it seems a little crazy to try and shoehorn everything in to one place. It is Kev's thread so it makes sense for it to live as a place to discuss his work at Analogue, but even Kev told people to move MiSTer discussion somewhere else.

Just thinking out loud though; not trying to meta-mod. 

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4 hours ago, Sneakyturtleegg said:

This thread was at its best when Kevtris was participating and setting the record straight about the consoles he worked on. Mainly the NT Mini and Super NT. A lot of people, including Kevtris essentially migrated to the Classic Gaming Discord Server, around the time of the Mega SG launch. Discord essentially serves the purpose of this thread and then some, with access to the devs of other great retro products too. I highly recommend it. I still check on this thread every so often, but it ran its course a while ago. For as much good information is in here, there is just as much off topic nonsense, false information, and internet flame wars stuff. When something gets this big, I guess that is inevitable. It is there on Discord too, but it can be filtered out.

 

A lot of the migration (including Kevtris) happened way back in early 2018. I remember Kevtris narrating his Super Nt bug fixing in real time, which was fun to be a part of.

 

The problem with Discord is it can be a huge time suck, especially if you follow multiple channels. Catching up after being a away for awhile is a real chore if you feel the need to skim everything. There's a very low signal to noise ratio a lot of the time. But there's also great content sometimes that make it worthwhile.

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7 hours ago, cacophony said:

The problem with Discord is it can be a huge time suck, especially if you follow multiple channels. Catching up after being a away for awhile is a real chore if you feel the need to skim everything. There's a very low signal to noise ratio a lot of the time. But there's also great content sometimes that make it worthwhile.

So it's more FOMO addiction? Glad I'm not on that...

 

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5 hours ago, Pixelboy said:

So it's more FOMO addiction? Glad I'm not on that...

 

I wouldn't say that because there's no actual anxiety or addiction. There's just a lot more activity. Imagine if this thread was getting 500 posts per day.

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