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1088XEL Atari ITX Motherboard DIY Builders Thread

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Hi Doc. It did get changed to a unique size and re-specified in the BOM, although the re-spec'ed PSU disappeared from eBay months later. However using the new plug mm designation in an eBay search will show several alternatives, and of course MacRorie sells suitable replacements as well.

 

Anyone who owns an XEL with the older power jack really should switch over to the new one for safety reasons. To not do so, is risking a potentially substantial loss of money in the event that you mix up your Atari 9 VAC PSU with the proper 5 VDC one.

 

BTW, the respec'ed power jack shown in the BOM is a drop-in fit for the old one, and due to the nature of the pads, a pretty easy one to desolder from the board.

 

That reminds me, I need to check what I used on my beta board, and what I ordered from Macrorie on my second unit :/

 

I killed a 1200XL using the wrong PSU so I know the pain it can cause

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I got the last parts I needed to repair my 1088XEL’s IDE CF interface this week; I’ve now got the new CF-3 installed (replacing the original CF-2 from last year) and I’m rocking my 16GB Sandisk Ultra card (replacing the 8GB Ultra that got fried in my power jack fiasco).

 

I have not yet replaced the PSU and power jack - that will come in a few weeks when I get around to. I *HAVE* removed the 9VAC adapter from the area and I’ve marked the end of the XEL adapter prominently with colored taped to differentiate it as a stop-gap.

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OK, so I just created a virtual credit card number and ordered my Realan H60 case from AliExpress. I already have my Sophia DVI that I'd planned to put into my 800XL, but I've decided to usein my 1088XEL build instead. I plan to order my motherboard, UAV, StickPic, and CF3 Dual CF Adapter from The Brewing Academy, the bulk of my components from Digi-Key, my Ultimate 1M Upgrade from Lotharek and my custom Atari ICs from B&C within the next two weeks to a month. I'm so excited to get everything in and get started on this build. I can't wait get this baby going!

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OK, so I just created a virtual credit card number and ordered my Realan H60 case from AliExpress. I already have my Sophia DVI that I'd planned to put into my 800XL, but I've decided to usein my 1088XEL build instead. I plan to order my motherboard, UAV, StickPic, and CF3 Dual CF Adapter from The Brewing Academy, the bulk of my components from Digi-Key, my Ultimate 1M Upgrade from Lotharek and my custom Atari ICs from B&C within the next two weeks to a month. I'm so excited to get everything in and get started on this build. I can't wait get this baby going!

 

 

Load up the components in a shopping cart at DigiKey and compare them. I am pretty sure I beat that price if you are just ordering the components.

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Load up the components in a shopping cart at DigiKey and compare them. I am pretty sure I beat that price if you are just ordering the components.

 

Uhmm, yeah, I don't believe so, unless I'm misunderstanding something. You have board level components & power supply listed for $210. My Digi-Key BOM, which includes pretty much everything except for the Atari specific ICs and maybe $10 worth of parts that I'll have to get from Jameco or ebay is right at $95, so I'm saving close to 50%. I should be able to get all components, Atari chips, and power supply for less than $200, and on your site, they're listed at $315. I like to support our community and those selling these items, but that's close to a 40% savings and that's hard to pass up. Is there something I'm not understanding correctly about the prices I see on the order form. If so, I'll be glad to change.

 

Thanks Marlin.

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I was PM'ed about where I got the Atari Fuji sticker used above the power switch on my Realan case. Since I figured others might also be interested, I decided to post the info here.

 

This image doesn't do it justice.

 

post-42561-0-70017400-1557412782.png

Originally I purchased it from a guy selling them on Etsy, but upon checking if they were still available, I only got a "Sorry, that's unavailable" message. But with a look across the Internet, I found an alternative source (likely the same person) HERE.

 

post-42561-0-96346800-1557412773.jpg

 

These are made more like a vinyl decal, having a carrier film that after applying the self stick side, is peeled off the top only leaving the 'raised' metallic graphic. End result looks very professional.

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Uhmm, yeah, I don't believe so, unless I'm misunderstanding something. You have board level components & power supply listed for $210. My Digi-Key BOM, which includes pretty much everything except for the Atari specific ICs and maybe $10 worth of parts that I'll have to get from Jameco or ebay is right at $95, so I'm saving close to 50%. I should be able to get all components, Atari chips, and power supply for less than $200, and on your site, they're listed at $315. I like to support our community and those selling these items, but that's close to a 40% savings and that's hard to pass up. Is there something I'm not understanding correctly about the prices I see on the order form. If so, I'll be glad to change.

 

Thanks Marlin.

 

 

Fair enough. That option includes everything in the BOM (except, of course, the Atari chips and the UAV/SIO2PC/U1M) including those things not available from Digi-Key. I figure after time, shipping, and sales tax, I am probably a bit cheaper. Also, be aware that I tag each and every part with a silkscreen location as well as a rating (if applicable). All parts are then sorted into baggies according to the sub-section on the BOM.

But, hey, to each their own. No worries!

 

 

EDIT: Clarity and pronouns.

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Fair enough. That option includes everything in the BOM including those things not available from Digi-Key. I figure after time, shipping, and sales tax, I am probably a bit cheaper. But, hey, to each his own.

When you say "everything" do you mean the custom Atari chips as well? Because that's a little confusing since they're listed separately, by themselves. If that includes the custom Atari chips, then your price isn't too bad. Since they're listed separately, it led me to think they weren't included in that board level component package for $210. If they are included in that, then I may reconsider.

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When you say "everything" do you mean the custom Atari chips as well? Because that's a little confusing since they're listed separately, by themselves. If that includes the custom Atari chips, then your price isn't too bad. Since they're listed separately, it led me to think they weren't included in that board level component package for $210. If they are included in that, then I may reconsider.

 

 

Sorry for the confusion. I have edited it for clarity.

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Thanks for clarifying Marlin. I appreciate it and I'm sure future 1088XEL builders will as well.

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Thanks for clarifying Marlin. I appreciate it and I'm sure future 1088XEL builders will as well.

 

 

No worries. I live to serve! ;-)

 

On a related note, I will make this statement: If *anyone* needs a few* parts they forgot to order, I am MORe than happy to match Digi-Key's price and send them along. I will also beat their shipping costs.

 

* = y'know, <=10 or so. Not a hard and fast rule, just be aware that I tag each and every part with a board location number and rating.

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For anyone who will do more than one electronic project, it's worth to buy bulk resistors and ceramic capacitors from China thru ebay or AliExpress. It's like $2 for assortment of 300 resistors with free shipping. Digikey will sell you maybe 10 resistors for $2?

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For anyone who will do more than one electronic project, it's worth to buy bulk resistors and ceramic capacitors from China thru ebay or AliExpress. It's like $2 for assortment of 300 resistors with free shipping. Digikey will sell you maybe 10 resistors for $2?

True enough, and for those of us who do a lot of one-off projects and tinkering, repairs and whatnot, that’s what we do. However, for the XEL and XLD projects, especially the XLD’s MIDI stuff, there’s a bunch of stuff you’re not likely to need often that there’s little need to buy in bulk: resistor networks (both SIP and DIP form factors), DIN13 A/V jacks, DIN5 MIDI jacks, PIC microntrontrollers, SRAM ...

 

For those you can let someone who’s got a system handle all the oddball, one-off or limited-quantity parts (e.g., Marlin), or you can print off the BOM, order them all from like 3/4 vendors, keep track of a bunch of incoming shipments, and do it yourself.

 

I’ve done it both ways - I bought a full kit of parts for my XEL, and then for the XLD I bought stuff myself from DigiKey, Mouser, Jameco and eBay for my XLD (and a few parts from Marlin that would’ve taken two months to get on the slow-boat from China via AliExpress or for which a $20 minimum order wouldn’t cut it).

 

Neither way is better or worse, and neither way is “wrong.” But there’s definitely something to be said for convenience, service and fast shipping from one source!

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Please don't understand me wrong. I'm not saying don't buy the kit from MacRorie, quite opposite. I'm only saying don't buy resistors and capacitors from digikey, get them in bulk from China, ahead of time. I would add olso DIP sockets.

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Posted (edited)

I have a XEL board from MacRorie (as with all boards from MacRorie it includes the ST monitor mod). I bought the Cool Novelties Scart cable and a Scart to HDMI adapter.

I tested my adapter with my old VBXE board, which installed in XEGS and wired for Scart according the installation manual. It worked.

Now, the XEL board works on a CRT TV via the Cool Novelties cable, but not with the Scart -HDMI adapter. It only produces a white screen and this only when the XEL is powered.

Is there anything, I can try to make it work.

Edited by JoSch

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I have a XEL board from MacRorie (as with all boards from MacRorie it includes the ST monitor mod). I bought the Cool Novelties Scart cable and a Scart to HDMI adapter.

I tested my adapter with my old VBXE board, which installed in XEGS and wired for Scart according the installation manual. It worked.

Now, the XEL board works on a CRT TV via the Cool Novelties cable, but not with the Scart -HDMI adapter. It only produces a white screen and this only when the XEL is powered.

Is there anything, I can try to make it work.

 

 

It could be that the SCART-HDMI adapter does not play nice with the signals it is getting. If you are getting solid video from the XEL in one format, but not through an adapter, I would tend to blame the adapter.

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It could be that the SCART-HDMI adapter does not play nice with the signals it is getting. If you are getting solid video from the XEL in one format, but not through an adapter, I would tend to blame the adapter.

Yes, you are correct. But with the other VBXE the adapter works.

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Yes, you are correct. But with the other VBXE the adapter works.

 

 

Well, huh. Will have to give that one a thought. Can you give me the specific model numbers of the adapter and TV/monitor?

 

Thanks

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Well, huh. Will have to give that one a thought. Can you give me the specific model numbers of the adapter and TV/monitor?

 

Thanks

It's this one: https://www.amazon.de/gp/product/B07DVLKDVQ/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o08_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1.

My guess would be that hsync mod doesn't with the converter.

The other VBXE is connected like in the installation instructions detailed, meaning RGB control is on SCART in 16.

I wanted to jumper the cut you made, but couldn't find which pin of the DIN connector is connected to which pin on the board. Do you know of any schematics detailing it?

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I just test the VBXE version of TLW with the old VBXE. The converter displays an image even then. So it can't be the composite signal being picked up.

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I just got $400 for my Jaguar auction and I've ordered all of my board level components for my 1088XEL build. I'm excited to start assembly! While I'm not really intimidated by the scope of the project, it has been 30 years since college and 28 years since my bench tech days. I have a question about the caps. I was under the impression most, if not all, electrolytic capacitors were polarized. Is this not the case? The only reason I ask is that, very few caps show the proper polarized positioning on the 1088 motherboard. C1, C2, C3, C6 & C7 do, for example, but most, or none of the others do. Can I assume that, unless they're otherwise noted like those I mentioned, all other caps are non-polarized?

Thanks.

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I just got $400 for my Jaguar auction and I've ordered all of my board level components for my 1088XEL build. I'm excited to start assembly! While I'm not really intimidated by the scope of the project, it has been 30 years since college and 28 years since my bench tech days. I have a question about the caps. I was under the impression most, if not all, electrolytic capacitors were polarized. Is this not the case? The only reason I ask is that, very few caps show the proper polarized positioning on the 1088 motherboard. C1, C2, C3, C6 & C7 do, for example, but most, or none of the others do. Can I assume that, unless they're otherwise noted like those I mentioned, all other caps are non-polarized?

 

Thanks.

 

 

The great majority of caps on the XEL and XLD boards are tiny ceramic caps (30 of the 0.1 uFs alone for the XEL, if I remember correctly). Ceramics of course are not polarized so install however you like - personally my OCD gets me so I install them all with the markings in the same orientation. I think there are only like 6 - 7 electrolytics total, and you've called out most of them in your post. :)

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The great majority of caps on the XEL and XLD boards are tiny ceramic caps (30 of the 0.1 uFs alone for the XEL, if I remember correctly). Ceramics of course are not polarized so install however you like - personally my OCD gets me so I install them all with the markings in the same orientation. I think there are only like 6 - 7 electrolytics total, and you've called out most of them in your post. :)

 

OK, it seems like there were quite a few more than that and just a few of the ceramics, but I probably got that turned around. There's a lot to keep track of on that BOM and the old memory isn't what it used to be.

 

Thanks!

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OK, it seems like there were quite a few more than that and just a few of the ceramics, but I probably got that turned around. There's a lot to keep track of on that BOM and the old memory isn't what it used to be.

 

Thanks!

 

Certainly! I will give you one hint, assuming you're not planning to do this already - do all the like components at one time, starting with the low-height discrete stuff. E.g., do all the ceramic caps, then do all the resistors, then the diodes, then the sockets, etc. And do all the ones of the same value all at one time. You end up chasing all over the board as you work but first off, that will get you intimately familiar with the layout; and second, by doing all the low-height discretes at once, you can get most of the components installed without needing a vise or helping hands - you can just push stuff through, flip the board over and solder it into place. Once you start installing the taller bits like the electrolytic caps, the headers, and such, you have to make allowances for those when you turn the board over to work due to the few parts protruding much more than the rest.

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OK, I'm getting ready to order the last piece for my 1088, the Ultimate 1MB Upgrade from Lotharek. Just to make certain, before I complete my order? Is there anything else I need from Lotharek for my 1088? There doesn't seem to be any special version for the 1088 or anything. I just want to make certain I don't need any sort of headers or connectors from Lotharek before I complete my order; that I can complete my 1088 with just the Upgrade itself and everything else from the bill of materials.

 

Thanks.

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