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Vinnie D.

RS232 port

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Right, but without 32k, what kind of terminal software are you planning to use?

 

I agree totally with that statement! :thumbsup:

 

I'm looking at it from a perspective that would allow the greatest number of users. If someone was going to take on the great task of designing and building a new RS-232 for the TI community, they would probably want to sell more than a couple of units. Considering the diversity of TI configurations, and the various needs and wants of people, that was why I figured a true stand alone that was not dependent on any other hardware (or expense) would be the ideal solution.

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There's always the possibility of the HDX-UberGROM unit... but I'm not familiar enough with it to speak authoritatively.

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I'd certainly be interested in buying one if the price stays reasonable. I know economics of scale will be a challenge there, but I think looking outside of Atari Age for a wider market might bring in enough interest. I see plenty of benefit for a compact RS232 port that's compatible with older software, and isn't nearly as space consuming as the old sidecar or a PEB. In fact a more accessible serial port could open up chances for developers to create more applications for TI-99 users for communication with PCs, modems, and other peripherals. Certainly worth the space savings if nothing else.

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Interestingly, most people who have an affinity for our system have spent the money on some sort of expansion... There aren't that many console-only users out there, especially now with the sidecar 32k and the FG99.... even those with a passing interest in TI gaming have expanded at least that far.

 

That isn't to say there aren't ANY console-only users out there, but (to be honest) it is a fairly small group of folks-- and if they aren't interested enough to have picked up expansion of some kind at this point, it seems unlikely they would have a great deal of interest in serial transmissions via rs232.

 

Now, an add-on serial card to jedimatt's 32k might generate some interest, since it is reaching the "masses", but a standalone unit wouldn't have access to 32k, and couldn't run the required software to do rs232 stuff.

 

If we are talking about building a device that does both, you won't get cheaper than a nanoPEB, I'm afraid, and you can pick one up for $100 or less multiple times a year if you are patient.

 

As was suggested earlier, TIPI gets out on the web pretty handily and does much much more... it's just not rs232 serial interfacing. For file storage, networking, online gaming, an online chat room, and a massive download archive, TIPI is the future.

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Sadly it's moot at this point, since one does not appear to be on the horizon, but here is my reasoning for a stand alone/pass through design.

 

1) There are users with the internal 32K modification, as it was an inexpensive option. A stand alone RS-232 would work for the internal mod crowd,

without having to rip out the modification they already performed, just to replace it with another 32K option.

 

2) A stand alone would still work with the 32K sidecar (of any variety), but not require it.

 

3) A stand alone would probably be less expensive than a P-Box version, making it more marketable and beneficial to some P-Box owners.

 

A stand alone could be used by pretty much anyone, even TIPI and Nano-PEB owners who want 100% compatibility with the rest of the world or just some specific hardware.... assuming such a sidecar unit had jumper settings.

 

4) I figure a unit with wider appeal would also have a greater chance of having a 3D printed case designed and made for it.

 

I agree Owen, the TIPI is awesome, but for some the expense involved might be more than some are willing to go.

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Internal 32k consoles typically have bypass switches.

 

The PBox cards aren't that expensive IF you have a PBox.

 

Any standalone unit would have to have 32k available to run useful terminal software.

 

A printed case is great, but without 32k, you can't run the software. It's really simple.... you'd have a paperweight with a nice case.

 

The OP doesn't have the internal 32k mod. I'm just trying to help him achieve his goal. A stand-alone rs232 wouldn't do that because there is no useful term software that runs on a bare console with no 32k.

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... Ideally I'd like to include a passthrough as well so that it doesn't terminate the chain (as my RAM expansion already does that). Any suggestions?

 

 

Any standalone unit would have to have 32k available to run useful terminal software.

 

A printed case is great, but without 32k, you can't run the software. It's really simple.... you'd have a paperweight with a nice case.

 

The OP doesn't have the internal 32k mod. I'm just trying to help him achieve his goal. A stand-alone rs232 wouldn't do that because there is no useful term software that runs on a bare console with no 32k.

 

True, true, but I don't think we are quite discussing the same issue. I agree with you on the 32K aspects, I'm only addressing the configuration of a possible sidecar RS-232 design that would have a wide audience and therefore be a viable option. From his original post (quoted above) he even mentioned a passthrough design... this would meet his requirements.

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Eh screw it, SAMS in console using 8M x 8 SRAM and 5v-capable CPLD as a two-chip solution, along with your speech synth. TiPi with passive edge connector adapter. :P :P :P

 

:D

 

When did my head develop interest in plumbing?

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TIPI cannot be extended to add TI legacy compatible rs232 - there isn't room in the CPLD for the additional logic.

 

My mini-rant has nothing to do with this thread, but this is so common. Nearly every device ever made with a CPLD doesnt have enough room left on it to add the next awesome feature.

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My mini-rant has nothing to do with this thread, but this is so common. Nearly every device ever made with a CPLD doesnt have enough room left on it to add the next awesome feature.

 

I chose the smallest CPLD that would handle the design.

About $7 per board. If you want room for things it wasn't designed to do, you'd go FPGA, and big. A typical FPGA requires an additional CPU to load the configuration on powerup. So probably $45 per board in parts I didn't need.

 

Something to mini-consider.

 

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Hopefully I'm not too far off course on this question, but here goes: I have a scenario, 1 console on a normal PEB w/ 1MB SAMS, RS232, 2 Ddrives and another machine on NANO PEB. What is the best way to get files moved to the PEB expansion (to save to floppy) from the NANOpeb unit? Any software to transfer with via RS232? Thx

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Hopefully I'm not too far off course on this question, but here goes: I have a scenario, 1 console on a normal PEB w/ 1MB SAMS, RS232, 2 Ddrives and another machine on NANO PEB. What is the best way to get files moved to the PEB expansion (to save to floppy) from the NANOpeb unit? Any software to transfer with via RS232? Thx

This is in the pinned FAQ post use HDX. It works with both devices you will need a cable for each as the ti rs232 uses 25 pin straight through and the nano is a 9 pin nullmodem. Chfdxs works on both and there is a fg99 binary avail

 

Greg

 

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