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stephena

Stella 4.6.5 released

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So, it's time for a new release of Stella. I'm still working on the improved paddle emulation as well as a new phosphor mode that looks much nicer than the current implementation. Those changes are taking a little longer than expected, so I decide to do an interim release now. Changes are as follows:

 

* Added mappable events for toggling TV color/BW, left difficulty A/B and right difficulty A/B. This means that one key, joystick button, etc. can be used to toggle each event. Thanks to Buzbard of AtariAge for the suggestion.


* Added ability to edit values in more widgets in the debugger. For now, this applies mainly to the various decimal and binary fields. More widgets will be made editable in future releases.

* The TIA now emulates the jitter that occurs when scanline counts are not consistent frame-over-frame. Also, the DPC+ scheme now emulates jitter that can occur when using its Fractional Datafetchers if the DFxFRACINC registers are not re-initialized every frame. Special thanks to SpiceWare for this implementation.

* Tweaked 'MDM' scheme autodetection to detect that the identification string can be in either bank 0 or bank 1.

* Changed 'hidecursor' commandline argument (and associated UI item) to 'cursor'. The new argument allows to set mouse cursor visibility separately for both UI and emulation modes.

* Fixed snapshot bug most noticeable in MacOSX, where taking a snapshot of a TIA image sometimes left parts of the UI onscreen (and in the resulting picture).

* Fixed memory leak; the game console wasn't being closed after exiting a ROM.

* For the Windows port: added an application icon for Stella in the Control Panel "Add/Remove Programs" list.

* For the OSX port: Updated build scripts to be compatible with Xcode 7.

* Updated included PNG library to latest stable version.

 

As usual, Stella can be downloaded from Stella webpage; any donations are greatly appreciated. Issues, comments, bug reports, etc can be posted in this thread or by PM.

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Nice!

 

After play testing The Stacks I decided the jitter routines need some more work. They work great for re-occuring screen jitter, but occasional screen rolls (caused by a large scanline difference between frames) aren't as noticeable as they are on the real thing. For those I think the display offset needs to happen over multiple frames, with the amount of offset decreasing over time.

 

Won't be for a bit though, have family in town for the weekend.

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How can I disable jitter emulation? There are quite some unfinished projects with unstable frame rates.

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I didn't set it up to be disabled, my thinking was it should emulate the real thing.

 

When I look at improving screen rolls I'll see about setting up a Developer Key to toggle it. CMD-J (OS X) and ALT-J (other OS) appears to be free.

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I'll probably do a 4.6.6 release soon that adds the Alt-j key to disable jittering. But I agree with Spiceware that since this is how real hardware works, it should be on by default.

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Sure. And it is perfect for developers like Darrell and me.

 

But in the past several games have been developed without that feature, and some of them have been abandoned. Just for those we would need that switch. And maybe for some protos, don't know.

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You definitely need this switch. I know I have looked at a lot of original games in the past with bad scanline counts. These may or may not roll on your TV. It depends on the TV. I would leave the switch defaulted off as most people are just looking to play the roms. For developers like us we will turn the switch on an off as needed.

 

For reference I always has the scanline count displayed. A casual gamer would not. The bouncing screen will help me and I like this feature, but I would default it to off.

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Awesome, as usual! :thumbsup: :)

Now I don't have to reach for the keyboard to toggle difficulty.

Thank you!

 

* For the Windows port: added an application icon for Stella in the Control Panel "Add/Remove Programs" list.

Why would anyone want to uninstall Stella?? (mind-boggling)

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You definitely need this switch. I know I have looked at a lot of original games in the past with bad scanline counts. These may or may not roll on your TV. It depends on the TV. I would leave the switch defaulted off as most people are just looking to play the roms. For developers like us we will turn the switch on an off as needed.

 

For reference I always has the scanline count displayed. A casual gamer would not. The bouncing screen will help me and I like this feature, but I would default it to off.

Excellent point omegamatrix, my JVC tube television is right on the spec like the sears SR-1000 composite - off by a single scanline and the screen rolls, yet my other tube televisions are more tolerant and my Plasma display moreso still. I use the JVC as a reference to make sure the display will be solid anywhere but agree this feature is not gamer friendly and programmers can simply look at the scanline count to ensure it's not changing.

 

Better to emulate a feature all classic televisions have, like artifacting :)

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OK, it's easy enough to make the jittering a toggle-able option, and bound to the Alt-j key as mentioned above. This will be in the next point release.

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Awesome, as usual! :thumbsup: :)

Now I don't have to reach for the keyboard to toggle difficulty.

Thank you!

 

Why would anyone want to uninstall Stella?? (mind-boggling)

 

Yes, impossible to imagine, isn't it :) In reality, this is simply my OCD kicking in, since I was uninstalling something else in Windows and noticed no icon for Stella. So I had to fix it,

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stephena, any plans to host stella off sourceforge? I'm hesitant to download the new build, they've been at it bundling spyware on and off again:

http://www.ghacks.net/2015/06/01/sourceforge-adds-and-removes-adware-installers-to-abandoned-projects/

 

I probably won't be able to move off Sourceforge until at least after version 4.7, so probably sometime around November/December. It's quite a bit of work to do so, in choosing where to go, whether they'll around in a few years, not losing 15+ years of SVN commit comments/history, notifying all current contributors, etc. When I'm ready to do it, I'll probably have to solicit some help from the people here to make the move.

 

For now, I guess I can provide links to my personal server for downloading ...

 

EDIT: I can also provide an MD5SUM of the original download files so you can at least compare to make sure nothing has changed:

cb7e910765d61b9ca63af51215719cfc stella_4.6.5-1_amd64.deb

1aec7eec3746d0a12308dc50c16221d2 stella_4.6.5-1_i386.deb

320a468f5925fb8b39a0a8fc7da99ef1 stella-4.6.5-2.i386.rpm

15e57424ddff47ce188dc2e3282ce6db stella-4.6.5-2.x86_64.rpm

99350999ddbfcd5b78fef21d62563a71 Stella-4.6.5-macosx.dmg

c22c922135497156bf630747cefb4637 stella-4.6.5-src.tar.gz

0e67922cd0c5b2b1c1b8f3a104839493 Stella-4.6.5-win32.exe

7496a9c8385876757e06fb15b2ca9a5e Stella-4.6.5-windows.zip

8e4f0e95e1a2c388c66e11669838a06c Stella-4.6.5-x64.exe

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stephena, any plans to host stella off sourceforge? I'm hesitant to download the new build, they've been at it bundling spyware on and off again:

http://www.ghacks.net/2015/06/01/sourceforge-adds-and-removes-adware-installers-to-abandoned-projects/

That's really bad. I can only guess that it has become victim of wrong people who have taken over control.

 

Is there any explanation what happened to sourceforge?

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That's really bad. I can only guess that it has become victim of wrong people who have taken over control.

 

Is there any explanation what happened to sourceforge?

Agree; I think you've got the explanation right. I could understand if it was a warez site.

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Is there any explanation what happened to sourceforge?

 

I don't think the story there is much different or more/less spectacular than any other site doing the same. They just wanted to monetize some of the downloads.

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I don't think the story there is much different or more/less spectacular than any other site doing the same. They just wanted to monetize some of the downloads.

Sure. But any sane thinking person there should have been aware about the reactions. So I suppose this the result of stupid greed management having taken over. :(

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Nice Job! Picked up some jitter on my game that I didn't see even with the scanline count on.

Looks like it's due to not initializing DPC+'s DFxFRACINC registers every frame.

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Thanks for the new release! Moving my request from the old thread to here :):

 

Would it be possible to allow the Stella game window to be freely resized (by the user) and the video contents to resize with it? The current zoom feature is kinda limited as it gives you very little control over the window size.

 

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Does Brad Mott have any input or say-so in the emulator these days?

Edited by Keatah

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Thanks for the new release! Moving my request from the old thread to here :):

 

Would it be possible to allow the Stella game window to be freely resized (by the user) and the video contents to resize with it? The current zoom feature is kinda limited as it gives you very little control over the window size.

 

 

While I'm not opposed to this functionality, I have quite a bit more in the pipeline before I can get to it. The current zoom is integer-based, and if/when I allow non-integer scaling in windowed modes, it will distort the effects. You can currently change the aspect ratio, which modifies the width of the window a little, but there is currently no way to modify the height.

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Does Brad Mott have any input or say-so in the emulator these days?

 

I speak to Brad every now and then, usually once a year or so. I normally consult with him before making major changes (the last time was the TIA overhaul), but in general I'm the sole maintainer of this project now. I believe he went on to do his masters and phd, so I would guess he has very little time for Stella. At this point in time, I've been involved with the project longer than he has!

 

Just curious; why do you ask?

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While I'm not opposed to this functionality, I have quite a bit more in the pipeline before I can get to it. The current zoom is integer-based, and if/when I allow non-integer scaling in windowed modes, it will distort the effects. You can currently change the aspect ratio, which modifies the width of the window a little, but there is currently no way to modify the height.

Thanks. Really hope you'll get to it eventually, personally this is a must have feature on any emulator as it allows you to have proper bezel support when using it with RL for instance, I'd be fine if you allowed resizing while still enforcing the aspect ratio though, I don't see much point on modifying it as it will only make things look weird.

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