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Calab

Got my TI-99/4a - what to do next?

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I recently got a beige non-QI TI-99/4a system with a speech synth and several cartridges, including Extended BASIC and Editor Assembler. The joysticks I have are worn out and don't work. I was able to revive the Mitsumi mylar keyboard. I don't have a PEB or memory expansion or disk drive.

 

I'd like to do some BASIC and assembler coding on the system, as well as play some games. What should I be looking for?

 

Stuff I'm considering to do or purchase...

- Cassette cable and recorder

- Atari joystick adapter interface - Is there a preferred model? Most that I see don't have any kind of case on them.

- Memory expansion - What is the go to for adding more memory to this system?

- Disk drive, or disk drive emulator - I have a Gotek drive in my Amiga. My Coco has an SDC cartridge. My Atari connects to my Windows PC to retrieve files. How can I emulate a disk drive on the TI-99/4a?

- I'm currently connected to a TV using a component video cable. Are there any video upgrades for the TI-99/4a to use VGA, component or HDMI?

- I have an MX-80 parallel printer. Can I connect this to the TI-99/4a? Is it worth the hassle?

- Is there an assembler/editor that works on a TI system without a disk drive? How about without the 32K expansion?

 

I've done some searching online, and checked out some of the online vendors and eBay. Most of the info I find is outdated and I'm not sure which of the upgrades are good for a system today.

 

Any and all info is appreciated!

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I recently got a beige non-QI TI-99/4a system with a speech synth and several cartridges, including Extended BASIC and Editor Assembler. The joysticks I have are worn out and don't work. I was able to revive the Mitsumi mylar keyboard. I don't have a PEB or memory expansion or disk drive.

 

I'd like to do some BASIC and assembler coding on the system, as well as play some games. What should I be looking for?

 

Stuff I'm considering to do or purchase...

- Cassette cable and recorder

- Atari joystick adapter interface - Is there a preferred model? Most that I see don't have any kind of case on them.

- Memory expansion - What is the go to for adding more memory to this system?

- Disk drive, or disk drive emulator - I have a Gotek drive in my Amiga. My Coco has an SDC cartridge. My Atari connects to my Windows PC to retrieve files. How can I emulate a disk drive on the TI-99/4a?

- I'm currently connected to a TV using a component video cable. Are there any video upgrades for the TI-99/4a to use VGA, component or HDMI?

- I have an MX-80 parallel printer. Can I connect this to the TI-99/4a? Is it worth the hassle?

- Is there an assembler/editor that works on a TI system without a disk drive? How about without the 32K expansion?

 

I've done some searching online, and checked out some of the online vendors and eBay. Most of the info I find is outdated and I'm not sure which of the upgrades are good for a system today.

 

Any and all info is appreciated!

Did you read the FAQ?

 

The reality is you need at least 32k expansion and disk to do assembly.. also the editor assembler cart or FinalGrom99 to load it in.

 

The optimal set up is a Sams 1mb and TIPI. Either in the expansion box or the sidecar. You can use a 32k card instead of sams but then you are limited to 32k obviously.

 

I have all the parts at arcadeshopper.com.. I can even find time to test and put up some cassette recorders

 

 

 

Sent from my LM-V600 using Tapatalk

 

 

 

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1 hour ago, Calab said:

Is there an assembler/editor that works on a TI system without a disk drive? How about without the 32K expansion?

Perhaps the Mini Memory? From http://www.mainbyte.com/ti99/software/s_carts/mini.html

Quote

The Mini Memory Command Module comes with a cassette which contains an assembler. You can load this assembler into memory, enter assembly language statements, and have the assembler translate the statements into 9900 object code for you.

 

From what I've heard, the Mini Memory assembler a little painful to use.  Perhaps someone with experience with it can chime in.

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Mini memory is 4k and yes works on a stock console. It will even save on cassette. Very very limited. Frustrating interface. Battery is likely dead if it hasn't been replaced it's soldered in. There are a few here that learned on mm.. I don't think they will recommend it over the real ea

 

 

Sent from my LM-V600 using Tapatalk

 

 

 

 

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3 hours ago, Calab said:

Atari joystick adapter interface - Is there a preferred model? Most that I see don't have any kind of case on them.

Welcome to the wonderful world of the TI-99/4A! I definitely recommend an Atari joystick adapter. My favorite is the one made by TexElec. The most  cost-effective place to get it is straight from the creator: https://texelec.com/product/ti-994a-to-atari-2600-joystick-adapter/

 

Paez3D makes a quality 3D-printed case for that adapter, too, and it will match your computer well. You'll see a reference to it on that TexElec page and then you can contact the case maker on eBay and he'd be happy to add a listing for you specifically to match your beige model.  
 

I'm happy with my 32K sidecar expansion and FinalGROM99 SD cart. I know a lot of people like the TIPI, too, but I don't have a need for one personally. 

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6 hours ago, arcadeshopper said:

Did you read the FAQ?

 

The reality is you need at least 32k expansion and disk to do assembly.. also the editor assembler cart or FinalGrom99 to load it in.

 

The optimal set up is a Sams 1mb and TIPI. Either in the expansion box or the sidecar. You can use a 32k card instead of sams but then you are limited to 32k obviously.

 

I have all the parts at arcadeshopper.com.. I can even find time to test and put up some cassette recorders

Yup! I did read the FAQ. Going over it again in case I missed something.

- F18A website doesn't look like it's been updated since last March. Is a MK2 ever going to come?

- From ArcadeShopper... These look interesting, but I assume that I only need one... which one? "Extended BASIC 3 in 1", "Extended BASIC fun", "Extended BASIC 3 suite" or "RXB 2015E Rich Extended BASIC/Editor Assembler suite"?

- From what I find online, there isn't much that will take advantage of more than the 32K upgrade, and without a PEB I'm pretty limited. Looks like a sidecar memory upgrade + TIPI with case is what I'm looking at, combined with a FinalGROM99 cartridge.

 

I've been to your site several times and I'm building up a shopping list.  :)  

 

Thanks for the info.

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41 minutes ago, Calab said:

- F18A website doesn't look like it's been updated since last March. Is a MK2 ever going to come?

Probably, yes.  However, real life has seemingly interfered, for the moment.  So the project is presently in effect on hold.  We've been waiting 40 years to see the TI-99 perfected.  So we can wait a little longer for the MK2, I figure. 

41 minutes ago, Calab said:

- From ArcadeShopper... These look interesting, but I assume that I only need one... which one? "Extended BASIC 3 in 1", "Extended BASIC fun", "Extended BASIC 3 suite" or "RXB 2015E Rich Extended BASIC/Editor Assembler suite"?

It is worth considering just getting a FinalGROM instead and running the Extended BASICs of your choice from there, I would say.  This will give you the latest and best in BASIC (like Extended BASIC GEM). But if you like the idea of having a dedicated BASIC or FORTH or E/A cart, there's no harm in it. 

 

41 minutes ago, Calab said:

 

- From what I find online, there isn't much that will take advantage of more than the 32K upgrade, and without a PEB I'm pretty limited. Looks like a sidecar memory upgrade + TIPI with case is what I'm looking at, combined with a FinalGROM99 cartridge.

Yes, that makes sense.  Your Memory upgrade options are the 32K (used by most disk software) or SAMS.  Presently, SAMS is used by relatively little, but is used by groundbreaking RPG titles Realms of Antiquity and Dungeons of Asgard.  And it's emerging as the new standard in the community.  So it's looking increasingly like the baseline to aim for.  Still, almost all legacy software will work with 32K. 

 

But TIPI and FinalGROM are the almost essential upgrades.

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Yup! I did read the FAQ. Going over it again in case I missed something.
- F18A website doesn't look like it's been updated since last March. Is a MK2 ever going to come?
- From ArcadeShopper... These look interesting, but I assume that I only need one... which one? "Extended BASIC 3 in 1", "Extended BASIC fun", "Extended BASIC 3 suite" or "RXB 2015E Rich Extended BASIC/Editor Assembler suite"?
- From what I find online, there isn't much that will take advantage of more than the 32K upgrade, and without a PEB I'm pretty limited. Looks like a sidecar memory upgrade + TIPI with case is what I'm looking at, combined with a FinalGROM99 cartridge.
 
I've been to your site several times and I'm building up a shopping list.    
 
Thanks for the info.
You don't need these xb carts if you have a FinalGrom99.. you are welcome to get one but they are all redundant to the fg.

F18a mk2 got covid delayed



Sent from my LM-V600 using Tapatalk

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5 hours ago, Calab said:

These look interesting, but I assume that I only need one... which one? "Extended BASIC 3 in 1", "Extended BASIC fun", "Extended BASIC 3 suite" or "RXB 2015E Rich Extended BASIC/Editor Assembler suite"?

 

 

If you're going to settle on one, you overlooked a most capable one!  << CLICK DOWNLOAD >> for one you should checkout for yourself.

 

 

Edited by Omega-TI

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I recently just picked up at TI99/4a myself. I opted to go for the MiniPeb and modem from Arcadeshopper. Figured that way I would have a disk drive emulator and memory upgrade all in one unit. Adding the modem was for bbs'ing and web browsing the TI sites. If I can figure it out. lol

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3 hours ago, cobracon said:

I recently just picked up at TI99/4a myself. I opted to go for the MiniPeb and modem from Arcadeshopper. Figured that way I would have a disk drive emulator and memory upgrade all in one unit. Adding the modem was for bbs'ing and web browsing the TI sites. If I can figure it out. lol

MiniPeb? Do you mean NanoPEB? I was looking at it, but was also considering the CF7+ since I have a parallel printer I could connect to.

 

The TIPI seems to be a decent add on that will emulate a floppy drive and should allow me to connect the TI to my Wifi. It should also let me connect to my parallel printer with a USB to LPT adapter and the right software. I'd still need a memory upgrade though.

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MiniPeb? Do you mean NanoPEB? I was looking at it, but was also considering the CF7+ since I have a parallel printer I could connect to.
 
The TIPI seems to be a decent add on that will emulate a floppy drive and should allow me to connect the TI to my Wifi. It should also let me connect to my parallel printer with a USB to LPT adapter and the right software. I'd still need a memory upgrade though.
TIPI also has built in Epson color printer emulation to PDF then you can just print the PDFs from the pi to a printer either directly or over the network share

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