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Curt Vendel

Happy New Year... XM shipping this month

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To hell with the XBOARD. It's a joke and next to nobody even has one let alone uses it. If it's not compatible with the XM then tough titties. Use a different 7800 with the XM.

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Shhhhhzzz... You're giving away all our best secrets.

 

If you press U+R, D+L, A+B and hold reset at the test screen then it's automatically downloaded to the XM's internal Flash via WiFi. It works like a charm as long as you have a solid internet connection that isn't using any sort of password protection on your wireless network. If it doesn't work the first time just reset your router.

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Will hopefully throw some video's up in the next day or so. Been doing a lot of SRAM and HSC testing. Getting an A0 walking issue for some reason and trying to nail that down, the WE and CS lines are sending out proper signals when probed, just resoldered the DIP socket to make sure no bad joints. Some weirdness going on the with the HSC and intermittent crashing and failing on extensive loops of the HSC ROM/RAM tests...

 

So looking into it.

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It could use the Pokey and Yamaha simultaneously to recreate that awesome 8-bit arcade rendition of Bach's Toccata in D-Minor:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TNc7VdD-ink

 

For comparison, the classical organ recital:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ho9rZjlsyYY

Such an inspired tune, and it was brilliant that the programmers at Konami realized how awesome it would be to have this tune accompanying the gameplay in Gyruss. You can't go wrong with either version of the tune, but it is really the NES version that I want to hear the Atari 7800 improve upon with Pokey & TIA.

 

 

The NES version is an abomination. No doubt the 7800's MARIA could handle the sprites like the arcade original. Chances are a single YM2151 wouldn't match the arcade original's audio considering Konami packed multiple AY audio chips on the arcade board and used every last one of them to their fullest abilities...

I agree about the graphics. The graphics in the NES version of Gyruss are not as good as the arcaede, or even the Atari 5200 version of the game. What I do like about the NES version of the game is that there you have to traverse the entire solar system and get to the Sun, and that there is a story of compelling you to complete your mission (I always have preferred games with objectives, and stories to reward the player for completing the objectives as opposed to just racking up points). Also I love that there are stage bosses since this adds new challenge to the game, and break up the repetitivness. As for the music I like how they jazzed up the Tocatta and Fugue tune, and added some additional tunes to the game. Edited by Tidus79001
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Now we're cooking!

...With GAS!

 

It could use the Pokey and Yamaha simultaneously to recreate that awesome 8-bit arcade rendition of Bach's Toccata in D-Minor:

 

For comparison, the classical organ recital:

Ohhh we could only wish for...

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The NES version is an abomination. No doubt the 7800's MARIA could handle the sprites like the arcade original. Chances are a single YM2151 wouldn't match the arcade original's audio considering Konami packed multiple AY audio chips on the arcade board and used every last one of them to their fullest abilities...

I wouldn't call the NES version an abomination. Sure it lacks a few sprite tiles and aydio channels, but overall makes a great playijng port. I do think a 7800 port would that could make use of both xm sound chips simultaneously would be ideal. Many nes games made faux chords by modulating square channels between notes every other frame. This is similar to sprite flickering as when done smartly it isn't disconcerting, despite having a distinct sonic signature. As long as the pitch on chords is above 120hz, it will work. Use triangle for basslines.

 

Splitting the pokey and xm by duty cycling multiple channels between notes would broaden the sonic abilities. You already have 8 channels at your disposal. That is if somultaneous usage of both chips is possible...

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The NES version is an abomination. No doubt the 7800's MARIA could handle the sprites like the arcade original. Chances are a single YM2151 wouldn't match the arcade original's audio considering Konami packed multiple AY audio chips on the arcade board and used every last one of them to their fullest abilities...

I wouldn't call the NES version an abomination. Sure it lacks a few sprite tiles and aydio channels, but overall makes a great playijng port. I do think a 7800 port would that could make use of both xm sound chips simultaneously would be ideal. Many nes games made faux chords by modulating square channels between notes every other frame. This is similar to sprite flickering as when done smartly it isn't disconcerting, despite having a distinct sonic signature. As long as the pitch on chords is above 120hz, it will work. Use triangle for basslines.

Splitting the pokey and xm by duty cycling multiple channels between notes would broaden the sonic abilities. You already have 8 channels at your disposal. That is if somultaneous usage of both chips is possible...

I agree that the NES version of Gyruss isn't an abomination, and feel that it is far from that for all the reasons that I listed in my previous post, #530 in this thread. With all the additions, and changes to the game I have always considered it a sequel as opposed to remake of the game on the NES, and it would have been better titled Gyruss 2. I don't think of the NES version of Gyruss was ever intended to be an attempt at exact recreation of the arcade version.

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I wouldn't call the NES version an abomination. Sure it lacks a few sprite tiles and aydio channels, but overall makes a great playijng port. I do think a 7800 port would that could make use of both xm sound chips simultaneously would be ideal. Many nes games made faux chords by modulating square channels between notes every other frame. This is similar to sprite flickering as when done smartly it isn't disconcerting, despite having a distinct sonic signature. As long as the pitch on chords is above 120hz, it will work. Use triangle for basslines.

 

Splitting the pokey and xm by duty cycling multiple channels between notes would broaden the sonic abilities. You already have 8 channels at your disposal. That is if somultaneous usage of both chips is possible...

Think there's even a technical term for it, "arpeggiating"...

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Well... I wont be able to run a test of Gyruss audio just yet, but I am beginning to place the resistors and caps onto the board for the analog ground and +5 section of the board and add in the needed resistors and caps for the LC2274 OpAmp that will handle the onboard Pokey and a cartridge Pokey if present to pass the audio through the XM into the 7800... so I should be doing some testing on the POKEY soon, Mark is looking at the address lines and timing of the SRAM and he's got one heck of a nice testing rig he build around an Atmega644, its pretty darned cool.

 

Perry's DK/XM and Beefdrop VE arrived so I'll be able to test with those soon and I'm putting together the parts he'll need for his OpAmp and Yamaha section so he can hopefully show us some of his creative magic I know he's been dying to put to the test on real hardware.

 

Once the Pokey audio is done, the keyboard subsystem was already working on Rev 2.0, I'll give it a thorough testing on the Rev 3.5 and put together some demo video's of it working with the XEGS keyboard and I also am really itching to test of Michael's (Mytek) XEGS to PS/2 keyboard adapter on the XM, so I'll hook up an IBM keyboard I have put to the side for just the occasion :-)

 

But we are moving forward and some very good solid progress is being made, gonna be calling on Mitch Orman hopefully soon to give the XM's the Compatibitity run down with every version of 7800 consoles ever made so he can give us a final word on what, if any versions may or may not like a part of a whole XM so we'll know if there is any issues with any of the various versions as each had its own quirky fixes & issues with games.

 

 

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Well... I wont be able to run a test of Gyruss audio just yet, but I am beginning to place the resistors and caps onto the board for the analog ground and +5 section of the board and add in the needed resistors and caps for the LC2274 OpAmp that will handle the onboard Pokey and a cartridge Pokey if present to pass the audio through the XM into the 7800... so I should be doing some testing on the POKEY soon, Mark is looking at the address lines and timing of the SRAM and he's got one heck of a nice testing rig he build around an Atmega644, its pretty darned cool.

 

Perry's DK/XM and Beefdrop VE arrived so I'll be able to test with those soon and I'm putting together the parts he'll need for his OpAmp and Yamaha section so he can hopefully show us some of his creative magic I know he's been dying to put to the test on real hardware.

 

Once the Pokey audio is done, the keyboard subsystem was already working on Rev 2.0, I'll give it a thorough testing on the Rev 3.5 and put together some demo video's of it working with the XEGS keyboard and I also am really itching to test of Michael's (Mytek) XEGS to PS/2 keyboard adapter on the XM, so I'll hook up an IBM keyboard I have put to the side for just the occasion :-)

 

But we are moving forward and some very good solid progress is being made, gonna be calling on Mitch Orman hopefully soon to give the XM's the Compatibitity run down with every version of 7800 consoles ever made so he can give us a final word on what, if any versions may or may not like a part of a whole XM so we'll know if there is any issues with any of the various versions as each had its own quirky fixes & issues with games.

 

 

 

Fantastic update Curt. Thanks to everyone on the team for keeping the dream alive!

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Well... I wont be able to run a test of Gyruss audio just yet, but I am beginning to place the resistors and caps onto the board for the analog ground and +5 section of the board and add in the needed resistors and caps for the LC2274 OpAmp that will handle the onboard Pokey and a cartridge Pokey if present to pass the audio through the XM into the 7800... so I should be doing some testing on the POKEY soon, Mark is looking at the address lines and timing of the SRAM and he's got one heck of a nice testing rig he build around an Atmega644, its pretty darned cool.

 

Perry's DK/XM and Beefdrop VE arrived so I'll be able to test with those soon and I'm putting together the parts he'll need for his OpAmp and Yamaha section so he can hopefully show us some of his creative magic I know he's been dying to put to the test on real hardware.

 

Once the Pokey audio is done, the keyboard subsystem was already working on Rev 2.0, I'll give it a thorough testing on the Rev 3.5 and put together some demo video's of it working with the XEGS keyboard and I also am really itching to test of Michael's (Mytek) XEGS to PS/2 keyboard adapter on the XM, so I'll hook up an IBM keyboard I have put to the side for just the occasion :-)

 

But we are moving forward and some very good solid progress is being made, gonna be calling on Mitch Orman hopefully soon to give the XM's the Compatibitity run down with every version of 7800 consoles ever made so he can give us a final word on what, if any versions may or may not like a part of a whole XM so we'll know if there is any issues with any of the various versions as each had its own quirky fixes & issues with games.

 

Is it possible to run the internal Pokey and Yamaha chips in tandem? Because that would be amazing!

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Is it possible to run the internal Pokey and Yamaha chips in tandem? Because that would be amazing!

It was designed for that possibility.

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So, here's an update... this week has been VERY productive for Mark, Perry and myself. We've discovered that the early 84/86 version 7800's seem to have some timing issues with the XM's which the 87 and forward NTSC/PAL (and Peritel) systems do not seem to have. So I did some logic analyzer captures as well as just some logic probe checks. Perry, Mark and I have gone over the traces on the boards together probably 6-7 times just to make sure there are no hardware issues lurking. Other than a data bus faux pas to the Pokey & Yamaha which was easily corrected, everything looks solid. Mark has been working on a new CUPL for the the PLD to address the timing incompatibilties and is also working to make his already very intelligent BIOS even more so to address these issues...

 

What this means is we may have the XM's compatible with all versions of the 7800 - the original 84 board design, the 84 design with the timing fix and then the 87 forward boards... this will be a MAJOR issue to have addressed because that has been the 800 lb elephant in the room on whether we would have people get their XM's and they may or may not work on their 7800s depending on the version...

 

Hope to have more updates middle to end of next week....

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Also, don't forget that the PAL 7800s have an issue where the wrong value resistor was used for the ext audio circuit. This makes the audio volume unbalanced if you use both TIA and ext audio (Pokey or otherwise) at the same time.

 

Mitch

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[...]We've discovered that the early 84/86 version 7800's seem to have some timing issues with the XM's which the 87 and forward NTSC/PAL (and Peritel) systems do not seem to have. So I did some logic analyzer captures as well as just some logic probe checks. [...]

Congrats on keeping the forward momentum going, team!

 

A selfish request - can someone please minimally document/share the timing issues with the early version 7800s? I have a feeling it would shed light on various other project's compatibility issues.

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Curt, get your hands on a copy of Serpentine please, it is a flavor of PCB that you have not tested yet. And this one is critical, because it has RAM on the PCB.

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I will have to ask RevEng where and how he's mapping memory, I've seen the video of the game, looks very cool...

 

 

Curt, get your hands on a copy of Serpentine please, it is a flavor of PCB that you have not tested yet. And this one is critical, because it has RAM on the PCB.

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Will definitely at the end of this put out everything we've found, Perry Mark and I have been doing some digging into things - actually read a lot of your older threads as well and I'm going to be doing some LA reads tonight on some new test routines Mark put together to really look at the trailing and leading signals for various functions. Be more than happy to share all of this once we know we've got a solid bunch of data to put out that anyone who needs it can use.

 

 

 

Congrats on keeping the forward momentum going, team!

A selfish request - can someone please minimally document/share the timing issues with the early version 7800s? I have a feeling it would shed light on various other project's compatibility issues.

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I will have to ask RevEng where and how he's mapping memory, I've seen the video of the game, looks very cool...

 

 

 

It is mapped to $4000.

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