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New Hardware: Atari 400/800 Super Color CPU Card

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Out of curiosity what is the point of putting one of these in an 800?

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I find it useful because it is the only PAL CPU card I know of that will use a 6502B (or 65c802). The Atari PAL ones only use Sally C014806.

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I find it useful because it is the only PAL CPU card I know of that will use a 6502B (or 65c802). The Atari PAL ones only use Sally C014806.

Interesting. But what's the benefit of that?

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Hi,

 

just want let you know that the prototype board (needed again a prototype after adding the UAV circuit) has arrived two days ago and yesterday I successfully assemble one. All is fine. Now I will order the PCBs in the amount of orders and start assembling. All parts already at my home. Purchasers will be kept informed as usual by email.

 

BR Jurgen

 

attachicon.gifSCCC_2.jpg

attachicon.gifSCCC_1.jpg

 

P.S.: There´s a little bug in the markings of the both pads between CPU and ANTIC... Can´t find the reason why I miss that so much, but of course the IRQ and HALT pads are made for connecting the Incognito, not VBXE... :?

 

What an awesome looking PCB, and I go absolutely nuts over big bins of well organized parts!

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Interesting. But what's the benefit of that?

The benefit is being able to run all the great PAL-only software and keep my 65c802.

 

Edit: I should say most instead of all because there are certain few things that won't run because of illegal opcode usage.

Edited by Kyle22
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The benefit is being able to run all the great PAL-only software and keep my 65c802.

 

Anybody has one spare of them or a source?

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Hi,

 

some time is passed... 8)

 

But here are some good news for all purchasers of the Super Color CPU Card: Yesterday the final batch with the PCBs has arrived!

 

After some delay for making a new version with UAV integrated I also have some trouble with german customs... they didn´t want to clarify the parcel from the PCB maker. But after endless phone calls and emails finally yesterday I got the PCBs. And of course I just assemble one for testing and these photos ;)

 

Here´s the final "gold" version for all orders:

 

post-15670-0-68576400-1489487828_thumb.png

 

This is the top site. There´s a jumper for choosing PAL or NTSC (for color clock input of GTIA), an enable/disable jumper for inverting the color signal polarity (a part of UAV), the GTA color pot, the UAV delay pot, two pads for easy soldering the needed connections by Incognito and finally five jumpers for selecting the CPU type.

 

post-15670-0-83570200-1489488097_thumb.png

 

This is the back (bottom) side of the PCB. Some parts there, but nothing special. The both "lenses" at the upper corners are made of silicone and prevent the PCB from touched the grounded metal cage.

 

post-15670-0-56425700-1489488234_thumb.png

 

With every order these both cables come with. The one is the video cable which can be passed through the pot hole in the metal cabinet. The pinout of the DIN 5 coupling connector is the same like used at any Atari 8-Bit computer with CVBS and S-Video. So absolutely no drilling is needed. The cable could use the outbreak formerly used for the RF / antenna cable. The 2nd, smaller cable is for the audio signal. When using an Atari 400, both wires must be soldered to two points at the 400 main board within the metal cage, so no drilling etc. needed.

 

You will get (not finished yet, but with first shippings I will offer the manuals) full instructions how to built the new card into your Atari 400 or 800 with pictures. Only two (Atari 400) or one (Atari 800) wires must be soldered, all other is solderless. You have also the option to re-use the existing monitor jack at the Atari 800 computer, if you want. Detailed informations are found in the instruction manuals.

 

What next?

 

I will start assembling and shipping out the PCBs upcoming weekend. Depending on my spare time I will make small batches of 5 or 10 pieces, make them ready, test them, make parcels ready and ship them out. All purchasers got their position on the order list by email already. Of course every shipping out is receipted with tracking number by email. I hope I can make all existing orders ready until the end of march, but it may take some time longer.

 

Jurgen

 

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I never noticed from the earlier images, but I now see that you have moved the color potentiometer from the stock location on the top right. This location is relatively important since the 400/800 have a hole in their case/RF shield that allows the color pot of the OEM card to be adjusted without disassembling the system.

 

PS: I went back through the thread and noticed that you had the potentiometer in the stock location for the prototype in post# 1, but moved it when you made added the UAV circuit.

Edited by BillC

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I never noticed from the earlier images, but I now see that you have moved the color potentiometer from the stock location on the top right. This location is relatively important since the 400/800 have a hole in their case/RF shield that allows the color pot of the OEM card to be adjusted without disassembling the system.

 

Yes, I change the position away from the original place. When I publish the first version´s pictures (without UAV), I got some feedback here in the thread and by PN/EMail that my intention to drill a new hole for the video cable isn´t liked. So I decide to move the color pot and enable the usage of the hole for a breakout place of the new video cable. So there´s no need to make irreversible changes to an good old 400 or 800.

 

And - from a technical view - this is also not mandatory. You have only to set up the SCCC once you´ve built it in your favorite computer.

 

The "color pot" in every 2600, 7800, 400, 800, XL, XE and so on system is nothing more than a simple voltage regulator feeding the CADJ input (pin 17) of GTIA with a constant voltage between 0 (zero) and approx 9 volts DC in maximum. Typically for best picture and colors something between 5,5 and 7 volts must be setup depending on TV system (PAL or NTSC) and GTIA manufacturer.

 

The thing here is, that the Atari 400 and Atari 800 have 12 volt rails and these are used for the color pot. IMHO this is the one and only reason why 12 volts are located at the CPU card connector. The old DRAMs need 12V of course, but expect the color pot / CADJ input there´s nothing which takes 12 volts. A resistor of 330k drops the effective voltage down to approx <7 volts maximum. At my SCCC I change this resistor to 220k to enable a wider regulation like in the XL/XE systems.

 

These 12 volt come from a linear voltage regulator (7812, located on the power board), so the output voltages is always the same - not depending which power supply you´re using or in which country (110 volts, 115 volts, 230 volts, ...) the computer is used. When the power supply fits to the electrical system, all is fine. The output (12 volt and of course also 5 volts etc.) are always the same. So you only need to setup the color pot one time. I suggest to built in the card without metal cage, set up color pot and delay pot to the best case values and then re-assemble the whole computer.

 

When using any 8-Bit computer with 5 volts input (all XL models except 1200 XL, all XE and XEGS models), you´ve to change the color pot most times when you´re changing the power supply. Because these computer models haven´t more than 5 volts, a simple loading pump is used to raise the voltages with a micro current up to approx 9 volts. This raised voltage will be used to feed the CADJ input. The loading pump is a discrete circuit, so the input voltage of the whole computer has an immediate effect on the output of this loading pump - the color changes with each power supply, more or less. Nice to see if a labour power supply is used ;-)

 

This also affects to the consoles with 9 volt DC power supply, where the unregulated power input is used for the color pot circuit.

 

Jurgen

Edited by tf_hh
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Rather than running the cable through a hole I suggest notching the bottom edge of the shield and running the cable through it. I made this suggestion in the following thread about the 400, post# 12 shows an implementation of this idea.

http://atariage.com/forums/topic/252047-drilling-holes-in-a-400-faraday-cage/

 

Running the cable through a hole in the RF shield makes the shield a semi-permanent part of the assembly unless the hole is large enough for the connector to fit through

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Rather than running the cable through a hole I suggest notching the bottom edge of the shield and running the cable through it. I made this suggestion in the following thread about the 400, post# 12 shows an implementation of this idea.

http://atariage.com/forums/topic/252047-drilling-holes-in-a-400-faraday-cage/

 

Running the cable through a hole in the RF shield makes the shield a semi-permanent part of the assembly unless the hole is large enough for the connector to fit through

 

Thanks for the link and this suggestion :thumbsup:

 

First time (see the old picture in the first post of this thread) I decide to use a standard angled header like used at the 3-pin internal audio connector. But then I realize, than the Dupont connector won´t fit through any hole, so there would be the need to assemble the Dupont connector after running the cable through the hole - bad idea. Now I use the same terminal block as on UAV, so the wires can be easily mounted and also easily removed, if necessary - without soldering. Of course any user who is able to can modify the metal cage in such way you show. I will include both ways in the manuals, ok?

 

The cable for internal audio remains under the metal cage, so there´s no break-out needed.

 

Jurgen

Edited by tf_hh

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Hi all,

 

due some problems (solved) and less spare time (not solved) it take longer than expected, but this weekend I finished the first batch of the SCCC.

 

post-15670-0-58427600-1492438286_thumb.jpg

 

Shipping out the first part will be done tomorrow (today it´s a public holiday here). All purchasers already got the information and tracking number by email.

 

Next will be made...

 

BR Jurgen

 

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Hi,

 

wow, that´s pretty fast! From Germany to the U.S.A. within four working days... :-o

 

Sorry, I´m 80% ready with the manual. I thought the parcels need longer, so the manual is ready first :)

 

Manual will uploadet here in the next 2 days...

 

Jurgen

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Mine posted on the 18th, cleared customs on the 21st and might arrive today or tomorrow (Arrived in NY, gotta get to California). Probably 7 days total. Nice job, was only at customs for a day.

Edited by Android8675
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Rec'd my Super Color CPU Card today!!! :D Thanks Jurgen for the hard work and communication throughout the process of development, production, and delivery. Now, I have some work to do ;).

 

-Mike

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Hi all,

 

a few days later than expected, but better late than never :grin:

 

Here´s the complete and final Installation instructions & manual for the Super Color CPU Card

 

Installation Instructions SCCC - Super Color CPU Card.pdf

 

Special thanks to Dropcheck and FlashJazzCat for proof reading & correcting my english faults :)

 

Jurgen

 

 

 

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Mine is already built in!

 

ATARI 400 PAL. I desoldered the channel switch to use the hole for the video cable.

 

Proof:

 

post-20150-0-54231300-1494015584_thumb.jpg

 

post-20150-0-06750100-1494015618_thumb.jpg

 

post-20150-0-82087200-1494015652_thumb.jpg

 

post-20150-0-03581000-1494015689_thumb.jpg

 

post-20150-0-40277200-1494015716_thumb.jpg

 

Just one question. Is the RF output still available when SCCC is installed?

Thank you Jürgen for this great device! Very clear picture now. Thanks to Bryan for UAV, too.

 

Best regards

 

Tigerduck

Edited by Tigerduck
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Mine is already built in!

 

ATARI 400 PAL. I desoldered the channel switch to use the hole for the video cable.

 

Just one question. Is the RF output still available when SCCC is installed?

 

Thanks for the pictures :)

 

No, the RF output is disabled. To enable this, the video output must be redirected to the Atari mainbaord, which would cause bad influence to the quality of the video signal.

 

Jurgen

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