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Atari has 80 Columns?

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Would you like something to give your Atari 80 columns. 35 or so years ago an 80 column cartridge called the DT80/ACE80/XL came out. It was designed and built by Claus Bucholz if you know who he is. If you would like to see these cartridges come back please PM me here and when there is enough interest to warrant reproducing them I will let you know. If you have another way of producing 80 columns now please post that info here. A complete list of things that produce 80 columns will be posted and reviewed here for you to choose from.

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Lots of ways to do it these days.  @ClausB is still on here and posts regularly BTW.

 

XEP80 - external and takes up a joystick port.  generally regarded as a POS

Sparta DOS X offers a great software driver for both 64 and 80 columns (see below as it also has VBXE support)

VBXE2 graphics upgrade has been out for I think 12 years now.  In addition to 80 columns in hardware (640 pixel resolution), we get 160*240 @ 256 colours, 320*240 @ 256 colours, 640*240 @ 16 colours.  All modes pull colours from a 21-bit RGB palette (2,097,152 colours).  The upgrade also has a blitter capable of shifting data at roughly 7MB/sec

 

I'm sure I've missed some, but other programs like Ice-T (VT-52 terminal emulator) and Last Word (word processor) also offer built in 80 column mode in software, with Last Word also supporting hardware 80 columns from VBXE2.

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On 10/8/2020 at 8:28 PM, Stephen said:

XEP80 - external and takes up a joystick port.  generally regarded as a POS

I thought it used both joystick ports?   I remember seeing it demoed at an Atari show, and I thought it was plugged into both.  Even then it looked like a bad solution, it was obviously slow.  It required a separate monitor port

 

I had some terminal software that used a 4x8 character set to give 80 columns.   Yeah it was hard to read sometimes.

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16 minutes ago, zzip said:

I thought it used both joystick ports?   I remember seeing it demoed at an Atari show, and I thought it was plugged into both.  Even then it looked like a bad solution, it was obviously slow.  It required a separate monitor port

 

I had some terminal software that used a 4x8 character set to give 80 columns.   Yeah it was hard to read sometimes.

No - it only connects to one (default is port #2).  another problem with it, is bad vertical overscan.  I've tried it on 5 different monitors, 3 of them professional grade Sony PVMs and none can display the full image height.

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Omniview replacement OS ROM also provided a software 80 columns S:/E: handler. (uses a Gr. 8 style screen) There was a special patched AtariWriter+ for Omniview on XE's that put the 8KB screen into extended RAM using separate Antic banking. it's one of only a handful of programs (~5?) To ever use the 130XE style separate antic banking.

 

With that said, I would be interested in 1 or 2 variants of the cart to play with...

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