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Martin72

1050 diskdrive with switch

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I have a question about a 1050 diskdrive i bought recently. The drive works fine, but at the front there's a two position-switch. I don't know what the meaning is of this switch. When i open the drive, there's mounted a additional pcb (at the position of a ic-foot of the original pcb) with an eprom and two other ic's on it. The switch is wired to this pcb with 3 wires. The ic's are not readable, because the text is disappeared.

You can guess my question... Do someone know what this is? And is it better to make the drive original?

I will make a photo later.

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Martin,

 

It's probably a diskspeeder. Your description sounds like a Supermax (a US Doubler clone), which was sold in the Netherlands, or a 1050 Turbo. The switch is meant to put the drive back in 1050-mode, which was necessary for loading a number of copyprotected games.

Do post a foto. A friend of mine used to have a Supermax back in those days, so I should be able to identify yours.

 

Groeten,

 

re-atari

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SuperDOS was made for the Supermax upgrade.

 

It was sold in Australia too (might have been developed here?)

 

There was also SuperMon which was a replacement OS, with Monitor built-in.

 

Here's an ATR image of SuperDOS 5.1 if you need it - mount it with APE then copy it to a real floppy (it doesn't seem to work on the emulator - probably due to no support for extended disk commands):

 

SUPDOS51.zip

 

I'd say leave the drive as-is. The switch would most likely be to turn the upgrade off - although such systems don't always cause the drive to fallback to 100% standard 1050 operation.

 

Fallback mode was mainly to keep protected game software happy - some games refused to work on upgraded drives.

Edited by Rybags

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Maybe it is a super dos extension because there're also some original floppies of SuperDos. How can i test the 'off' position of the switch?

Here a photo of the pcb:

1050_intern.JPG

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If you boot the SuperDOS disk, I'm fairly sure it should switch to super-fast I/O after about 3 sectors. Switching it off should see it just boot at normal speed all the way through.

 

There's a whole bunch of extra SIO commands that drive enhancements use - not sure if there's a specific utility that tests them.

 

I'd not worry about incompatibility - virtually every game in existance now has a cracked version which will work on enhanced drives.

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Martin,

 

Yep, that's a Supermax. Never thought I'd see one again after all these years...

 

You can tell if the switch is set to Supermax-mode, by listening to the pitch of and the intervals between the 'bleeps' the Atari puts out the loudspeaker. If you boot Superdos the pitch will then be higher and the intervals will be shorter. I don't know how the switch is wired onto the IC's. I'm sure my pal didn't have it on his drive.

 

Groeten,

 

re-atari

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Martin,

 

Yep, that's a Supermax. Never thought I'd see one again after all these years...

 

You can tell if the switch is set to Supermax-mode, by listening to the pitch of and the intervals between the 'bleeps' the Atari puts out the loudspeaker. If you boot Superdos the pitch will then be higher and the intervals will be shorter. I don't know how the switch is wired onto the IC's. I'm sure my pal didn't have it on his drive.

 

Groeten,

 

re-atari

 

 

I build the diskdrive together and test it with a Superdos 2.9 flop, and the switch to left, after a couple of seconds the intervals between bleeps will be shorter. The switch to right, and the drive works normal. Just one question, after booting SuperDos, what can i expect, something like a menu? I ask this because after let say 10-20 seconds, the drive stops and there's nothing happened. Maybe the floppy is corrupt?!?

When i test the drive with another floppy, the drive works properly.

Anyway, thank you all for your cooperation!!

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Martin,

 

Graag gedaan.

 

It looks like your floppy has indeed gone flaky. You're not the only one with this kind of problem, I have a number of floppy's in my collection that share the same questionable behaviour... Thankfully, these days just about everything Atari 8-bit is available for download.

 

I didn't use Superdos all that much back then, as I had already turned into a very dedicated Smartdos user. I do recall it booted into a menu similar to Dos 2.5.

 

I think Rybags is right, the Supermax was indeed developed in Australia. It was distributed in the Netherlands by Decos in Leiden. Somehow I doubt that very many were sold as they were quite pricey.

 

If you want to try out Hi-speed with your speeder, give Smartdos, Spartados, Mydos, etc. a try. Just about every Dos (but Atari's) should be o.k.

 

re-atari

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