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dogdark

ULTRA 256K CONVERTER [2020]

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Posted (edited)

ultra-768x527.png

As this occurred to me, it was something so complicated to work on this project, a combination of codes, which resulted in a single idea.

The ultra name, an idea came long ago, a cas creating files to donate to the atariana community.

The main idea was WillySoft, who came up to ask me a CAS file with the Draconus, which was in its version for STAC cassette system.

When Wily made the conversion of this file at a higher speed, I was plop, and I thought, I could create something new to what is already known.

Then as I had the idea disassemble and NHP 3.6 was finished, I thought about creating my own conversion system xex to cas.

It is there that Uncle asked permission Patch Black, donating the source code that had already desamblado to realize my project itself.

This project took me many hours and days of work believe it or not, it was almost a full year to complete.

FUNCTIONALITY

Ultra, is structured in an efficient way to read both as floppy cassette in loading data in its memory.

Is a combination of several converters in one, with the difference of others, which has 5 speed levels.

You have the ability to recognize the amount of memory banks expanded having a computer atari 8 bits.

You can find the 4 banks of a 130XE as 13 expansion Claus Buchholz.

Compatible with cassette players 1010, XC11, XC12 and Injektor.

It has a counter, error recovery, (rewind 3 laps), if a read error byte.

It works in MyDOS 4.53 operating system, which has the power to read SD and DD disk density.

STRUCTURE

Ultra provides several features inside that we will describe:

KEM2.ASM -> copy the ROM to RAM to change speeds.

MEM256K.ASM -> function that allows you to recognize the number of banks available and store them in a variable, also stores the number of bytes.

HEXASCII.ASM -> This feature is important because it converts bytes in numbers and displayed in atascii code. (Modified XT5).

LOADER -> Who in the first phase of desamble helped me Vitoco and final improvements WillySoft realize it.

encrypting the data was removed, which WillySoft the advice was not necessary for today, pirating anti formerly the others today.

EXECUTION

The ultra as mentioned above has 5 recording levels that we describe.

NHP -> It is more common and slower, as recorded in its entirety to the old 600 baud.

8NHP -> This is the second level is a recommended speed for faster reading. 800 baud recording and continuous monitoring.

STAC -> This system is well known by all and the fastest time, I am currently at 900 baud, to leave constant and with few errors in loading.

ULTRA

This is the new system of recording layers and read a file at 1150 baud, tried and tested in a casetera XC11, producing 5% of errors on a tape of good quality.

The recording occurs at the first 4 blocks in 800 baud block loader makes 900 baud and the remaining does 1150 baud.

The possibility of charging is tremendous, and as time saving is enormous unlike a conventional NHP file.

The ultra is the highest speed supported by a cassette, in a reading from the tape, but this is not here no more.

SUPER ULTRA

As its name, super ultra, this system is superior to ultra but not supported by the load cassette players dese tape.

But that does not stop being something bad, because testings were performed with several people and through a cassette adapter works.

Cas is advisable to create an image of a game and convert audio wav file to be uploaded to the atari.

Is the difference of its ultra predecessor, the load is performed at 1400 baud.

as the load is actually the first 4 blocks are loaded at 800 baud, loader 900 baud and 1400 baud remaining.

FUNCTIONING

But they all ask, How does it work this thing? ,,, It's very simple. Press image to get the file.

In Title 01 The first thing to do is enter the system default brings NHP, if you appreciate the image system says NHP.

If you want to make the change of speed must precede an asterisk * , the function to modify.

YOU DID NOT UNDERSTAND?

In the title field you must place the following:

* NHP NHP to record 600 BAUD

* 8NHP to record NHP 800 BAUD

* STAC STAC to record 900 BAUD

* ULTRA ULTRA to record in 1150 BAUD

* SUPUL to record SUPER ULTRA 1400 baud.

After entering the preferred system, it is amended SYSTEM by which you chose and the cursor will be relocated again in Title 01.

FILE UPLOAD

As mentioned above, the ULTRA, has the power to upload files both diskette and cassette, but the drive unit can only use one.

Has a default configuration that allows only read from drive D1.

For loading from disk, you just have to place the name of the file, if it is wrong you the directory where you show the files stored on the drive will appear.

If you want to make loading from a cassette, you must enter the following SOURCE 😄 .

For the single directory enough press RETURN until it appears.

visuality

The ultra has a very pleasant and uncomplicated to use graphical display, showing the PORTB in numbers to indicate the bank which is being used when loading the game memory.

ultra02.png

Now is when the fun is recording data this shows the bytes that are recorded on tape, something occurred to me, to validate bytes if recorded or not, leave it looked good.

And with this you can start creating your own audios to upload from your atari and play piecework, burn up the screen.

I hope you like it has been this article and to deliver my material and knowledge at your disposal.

And as always I thanked my staff that without them could not have done this project.

TIO BLACK PATCH - WILLYSOFT - Vitoco

 

CODE GITHUB

 

conversor-ultra.zip

 

ULTRA VERSION 2.4 CONVERTER [2020]

Having released version 1 of the converter, and thanks to users who reported some bugs, repairs were made to the ultra.

In this new version, they were repaired some bugs bytes that performed the action xex transfer of files to wav format.

IMPROVEMENTS

WillySoft, made changes to Annex code having the converter as an example:

  • File attachments, which are part of the code were modified and improved for receiving the xex files.
  • Now to change the loader and pages, it is not necessary to make a conversion to bytes, just enough to modify and then disassemble.
  • receipt of the PORTB is corrected, if this is active with basic, disables, automatically.
  • the last byte of the load block is corrected when it is 1, so that this record only missing bytes, bug repaired.

This does not mean, that despite the changes in this version, the original has been changed, the structure remains intact.

IMPROVING HIGHLIGHTED

WillySoft, .PROC create a function that generates change quickly in the system option.

Previously, one had to choose the option of predating recorded an asterisk (*), preceded by the operation we wanted to record.

Now as the operation more dynamically and quickly, just press the option key and this system will be changed automatically to taste.

Source codes and the converter I leave loaded into a folder on github so they can download at ease.

This will allow them to study the source code and its complete structure.

IMPORTANT NOTE

"Not all files can be converted XEX A CASETTE always have to work them FOR THE ATARI reconnoitre reading is CASSETTE AND NO floppy drive."

Edited by dogdark
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Posted (edited)

Well, I don't really like going to tapes, but I DO like any and all solutions that help me find some comfort for "childhood" traumas, left my by the frustration inflicted by my older 400+410 combo... 

 

To the above extent, I have been using SITRE (successfully), and I have recorded a whole 60min tape with several .XEX conversions, which account for nearly 180K of data (it is my "workout" tape, to check the Japan-made 1010 performance, only recorder I can recommend from the entire line-up). I have been able to load them all with ZERO errors or retries (which SiTRE manages really well).

 

What is the main difference or advantage between your solution and SITRE? 

Edited by Faicuai
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Thank you very much DogDark for this really important tool, in my opinion. I tested it about 5 hours last night and have to say I like it very much. Only a translation into English, German would be great. Maybe you could make us a kind of table and we will send you the translations? Then could you build that into this great tool? Oh, a guide would also be awesome.

 

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On 4/4/2020 at 7:10 AM, dash_rendar said:

Thank you very much DogDark for this really important tool, in my opinion. I tested it about 5 hours last night and have to say I like it very much. Only a translation into English, German would be great. Maybe you could make us a kind of table and we will send you the translations? Then could you build that into this great tool? Oh, a guide would also be awesome.

 

I will ask my friend AscrNet to help me create a table so that they can contribute, since I am just getting acquainted with github.

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Posted (edited)
On 4/3/2020 at 1:39 PM, Faicuai said:

Well, I don't really like going to tapes, but I DO like any and all solutions that help me find some comfort for "childhood" traumas, left my by the frustration inflicted by my older 400+410 combo... 

 

To the above extent, I have been using SITRE (successfully), and I have recorded a whole 60min tape with several .XEX conversions, which account for nearly 180K of data (it is my "workout" tape, to check the Japan-made 1010 performance, only recorder I can recommend from the entire line-up). I have been able to load them all with ZERO errors or retries (which SiTRE manages really well).

 

What is the main difference or advantage between your solution and SITRE? 

The only difference between Sitre and Ultra, is that it loads at a higher speed, Sitre has a máximum load of approximately 800 baud in terms of Ultra, it exceeds this load and therefore takes less time since it works at 900, 1150, in cassette machines, tested at xc12 and xc11.
As for why they do not load all xex files when you record on tape, it is not a problem for copiers, it is a xex file problem, as I tell all my friends who ask me why they do not load some games? the xex file must be prepared previously, so that the atari can recognize if the data is being loaded by a floppy drive or cassette, that's why.

 

I leave you a folder with xex files that are already ready to be transferred to tape, compatible with sitre and ultra.

 

https://github.com/a8dogdark/coleccion_cas/tree/master/XEX

Edited by dogdark
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Hmmmmmmm,

 

I still have difficulties in understanding your description... anyways, this is what I have found out so far by using the program:

 

0) not sure how much min. RAM is required for this program (48k? 64k? 128k?), since my computer has 576k RAM; but boot it without Basic (e.g. hold down the Option key)...

 

1) after loading a window appears, on the right half of this window you see:

    a) Titulo 01: this is the load/source speed of your tape, you can type in here: NHP, 8NHP, STAC, ULTRA, SUPUL which gives you a loading speed of 600, 800, 900, 1150 or 1400 Baud respectively

    b) Titulo 02: this is the save/target speed of your tape, you can type in here: NHP, 8NHP, STAC, ULTRA, SUPUL which gives you a saving speed of 600, 800, 900, 1150 or 1400 Baud respectively (but I doubt that you can save with 1400 Baud on an unmodified/standard A8 data recorder...)

    c) FUENTE: here you can type in the loading source, either C  for tape or simply FILENAME.EXT for diskette (of course you can also type in C and then load via tape-adapter from an alternative device, e.g. I am loading from my Hifi CD-Recorder or Mini Disc)

 

This means, you can load your data from disk or tape (or an alternative device simulating a tape via tape-adapter), but it looks like you can only save to tape. Since my tape-adapter uses headphone-out, I can use it for playback from an alternative device (e.g. CD-R or MD), but I cannot use it for recording...

 

2) When you have typed in the required stuff for Titulo 01, Titulo 02 and Fuente, you can start transfering the data; in case you typed in a wrong (disk) filename in FUENTE, the program will show the disk directory of drive 1; when everything is fine, the data transfer will begin as soon as you press the Return key...

 

(If I remember correctly, when the program showed a disk directory, I did not know how to return to the main window and after pressing several keys that had no effect, I pressed Reset - the program is reset-proof it seems and returned to the main window, but I had to type everything in again... so, what's the key to return from the disk directory to the main window ?)

 

3) Some guessing: To me it looks (sounds) as if the program does not use the standard 128 Byte blocks, the recorded blocks seem to be longer (maybe 256 Bytes?) and so it is hard to notice a difference between 600 Baud, 800 Baud and 900 Baud; the loader seems to use 4 blocks (maybe with 256 Bytes each?), then one very long block (maybe with 1024 Bytes or maybe longer?) and then starts to transfer our data (maybe 256 Bytes per block?). After the loader is written, the data transfer can be seen on the bottom display as 6 lines with 40 Bytes and 1 line with 16 Bytes (that's why I guess, it uses 256 Byte blocks)...

 

4) As said before, the program can load from disk or tape, but it looks like it only saves to tape. Think it was mentioned somewhere that one can create XEX or CAS, but I do not know if that is possible with this program, nor how it is possible... (Atm I can only use the program to transfer data from disk to tape and/or to copy normal tapes into turbo tapes and vice versa.)

 

Maybe someone can enlighten me a little more...?!?

 

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Hello Dogdark,

I just want to know if your program can rescue my corrupt data from 3rd party software ? Will it rescue my unnamed company who made this 3rd party tapes ? Yes, I brought those tapes in South Africa during 1980's era. 

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in a simple way it is a program to pass .xex to .cas but adding certain characteristics:

  • baud rate change
  • tape error handling to not reload from scratch
  • counter to know how much to charge
  • the name of the game you are loading

  it is designed to handle more than 64k of memory so it automatically detects the memory banks of the ATARI

 

regards
 

 

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