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Thinking about this after my last post yesterday, it hit me that it would probably be fairly easy to implement F0 as well, now that we are dealing with 64KB images.

 

I will put the game selection on hold and try this first...

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How do you plan to update/flash the ROMs to the card? As USB-mass storage would be cool..

 

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1 hour ago, Al_Nafuur said:

How do you plan to update/flash the ROMs to the card? As USB-mass storage would be cool..

 

That would be the most user friendly approach by far.  I'll have to see what I can do about the vendor ID though, as I don't have one I can use for this project.  Maybe there is a module out there I can use.

 

For now, I need to cross a few other bridges before I get to the actual flashing process, but I will definitely keep it in mind.

 

Thanks for the suggestion!!

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F0 works fine.  I was able to play Megaboy without any problems, so now the list of tested games/schemes is:

  • Megaboy (F0)
  • EF Template (EF)
  • Sword of Surtr (F4)
  • BMX (F6)
  • Asterix (F8)
  • Pacman (4K)
  • Air-Sea Battle (2K)

Now back to the game switch...

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OK, as always, there is more than one way to skin a cat.

 

I came up with a few ways the user could switch games on a multi game cart and at some point I will try all of them.  For now though and for the sake of moving forward, I have settled on the 32in1 on/off switch to flip through the games in ROM.  That is very simple to implement and does not require any additional hardware!

 

I've tested this today and it works fine, so I will try to load up a video of the progress so far over the weekend.

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I did not manage to make the video over the weekend as I intended to, but that may have been actually a good thing.

 

A few days ago I designed a SARA module to add RAM to the cart based on the feedback of @MemberAtarian.  As I could use the same design for another project I will be working on, I had the PCBs made and they arrived today:

 

20200414_193237.thumb.jpg.2631f24820dfcd0059b22d02db5343a1.jpg

 

It is basically an external RAM with a 74HC02 as address decoder:

 

20200414_193259.thumb.jpg.e3dc1c35a84010bcbbeb46f07259f77f.jpg

 

The other components/jumpers/headers are there for the next project 🙂

 

And here is the module plugged into the cart:

 

20200414_193351.thumb.jpg.ffe03bf4281dd6081c8e4d3a91b73b6c.jpg

 

I tested Dig Dug with this setup and it works fine.  I also checked the bus timings and they look good.

 

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Here is the updated list of tested games/schemes:

  • Dig Dug (F6SC)
  • Megaboy (F0)
  • EF Template (EF)
  • Sword of Surtr (F4)
  • BMX (F6)
  • Asterix (F8)
  • Pacman (4K)
  • Air-Sea Battle (2K)
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On 5/26/2020 at 4:47 PM, Al_Nafuur said:

I've found a PCB project at hackaday.io:
https://hackaday.io/project/12961-atari-2600-bankswitch-cartridge

it's a much simpler approach than your project, but maybe it's worth to take a look at..

I remember seeing this a couple of years ago.  The idea is interesting in that it creates a bus extender for the VCS.  This would allow for the production of 8/16/32KB games without bankswitching in the actual game cart (i.e. the bankswitch controller is in the "adapter" plugged between the VCS and the actual game).

 

One thing I would have done differently though is to make the bankswitch selection automatic.  This can be easily achieved by implementing the physical switch with four extra pads in the "bankswitched cartridge connector".  Every time you insert a game, the connector circuitry will close JP1 and JP2 as required by the ROM in the cart.

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