SMD ROM Replacement for Apple ][, ][ plus, ][ europlus

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CheshireNoir wrote:I
CheshireNoir wrote:

I certainly hope we can find some sort of diagnostics to the A][, A][+ as I have a very unhappy one that if I could get diagnostics working without having to have any other cards in would make me very very happy :-)

 

Was that ROMset for the //e?! Bugger. 

 

I will look around. I know that there were ROM EXP boards to do diagnostics on the ][+, abd what I sent, I thought was pulled from one of those. 

 

I am certainly seeing territory where selecting the subst ROMs is ideal, at least for Autostart. You would save two banks if that was a toggle, and thus have room for more options for base sets. I don't tink that Inspector w/o AutoStart has a great benefit. Unless I am mistaken, that set is designed to couple with the Disk ][. Might be wrong here. I still think that the kana support in-ROM would be something that no other product offers, and while I do not personally need it, it opens up a market avenue for you. 

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Wow! What a nice project! I

Wow! What a nice project! I've been looking for this kind of solution for some time.

Great that it is a "ROM eliminator" as that will consume less power/stress the powersupply less and generate less heat if the other ROMs are pulled as well.

Regarding other ROMs, Dr. Watson and diagnostic ROMs sounds extremely useful, I wonder. Anything that adds useful functionality is great!Sign me up for a few! 

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Thanks Kingpin. Good point

Thanks Kingpin. Good point about pulling the ROMs to save power - they can stay in the socket otherwise (the module overrides them). Seems there is a ram test function in the Programmers Aid ROM - that might be relocatable? Be good to have something that runs at power on, out of ROM, and performs a RAM test. If RAM is so bad that no display comes up, then beep codes would be nice - but now I'm talking a custom bit of code. I'm curious to see what the ROMplus diagnostics looked like - they run from C000 but possibly could be relocated? Anyone used a ROMplus with diagnostics ROM installed? Hmmm.... "ROM Eliminator" .... catchy .... 

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CheshireNoir wrote:I
CheshireNoir wrote:

I certainly hope we can find some sort of diagnostics to the A][, A][+ as I have a very unhappy one that if I could get diagnostics working without having to have any other cards in would make me very very happy :-)

 

What about the diagnostics ROM used on the Brainboard? Wouldn't that take the place of the AutoStart ROM in the memory map?

 

Has anyone tried using the //e diag ROMs on a ][+, for that matter? The major hardware difference is the RAM exp slot, rewired from what used to be Slot 0. 

 

I remember a diagnostic ROM that took the place of either the autostart or the monitor ROM, but for the life of me, I canna find or, and the only refs to it that I can find are of other people who similarly recall it existing. 

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DeanClaxton wrote:Hmmm....
DeanClaxton wrote:

Hmmm.... "ROM Eliminator" .... catchy .... 

;-)

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macnoyd wrote:I have a
macnoyd wrote:

I have a collection I will review tonight, but The Inspecor / Dr. Watson ROMS were premiere EPROMs back in the early Apple ][ / Integer basic days.

The documentation was well written and therer was a nice load of utilities, with or without a Disk ][, though a lot was geared around the Disk ][. 

Programmer's aid was also a good DOOO ROM choice.  It was dependent upon your n

 

Sharing, is caring! You can't lose anything by providing it. This would require patching the current ROMset. 

 

I suspect that ROM diagnostics would be a problem in-ROM, but perhaps we could devise at least a RAM test + colour and paddle test set?

 

Anyway, we can aways update options at a later date. 

 

Perhaps the //e diagnostics ROMs can be ported to replace the monitor?

 

 

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Diagnostics ROM

I recall that there was a diagnostics firmware on the “multiROM” card by DM. from Australia, but it only was a RAM check..

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Another contender....

Another contender....

 

FREEZE'S F8 ROM v2 for the Apple II PLUS. This is the famous Non-Autostart F8 ROM designed by The Freeze. For those of you who may not know who The Freeze was, let's just say that he was one of the greatest Crackers back in the 1980's. The numerous titles that he cracked could not be calculated. Let's just say its in the 100's. He was a very gifted and talented programmer. This F8 ROM not only shows all the Machine Language info but it also breaks the machine language down into Binary! Along with that he modified the Bell noise that you would hear from hitting the RESET or on some machines CTRL-RESET so its more pleasent to hear. More info .... I have enclosed a rom image of the infamous Freeze's F8 ROM. This was a awsome F8 Integer Rom. It has a custom Bell sound when you hit the RESET key, a better layout of the 6502 language, plus it displays Binary which is to the far right of the screen! It looks even better with a apple that has the pig font character generator. The machine language promt instead of being an " * " is an Apple!

 

More info ....

 

=-------------------------------------==-> Freeze's F-8 ROM A PPG release <-==-------------------------------------=

The Freeze's F-8 ROM is a modified F-8rom that has several added features.

-Old Monitor Reset-Step and Trace modes-Disassembly with ASCII-Disassembly with Binary in #Mode-Better sounding bell!

These advanced features make Monitorprogramming and Cracking much easier.

There are two ways you can use thisprogram. Either load it into the RAMCard using the FREEZE.INSTALL program.The other way is to burn it onto a2716 EPROM (Schematics later).

The only thing that really need anexplanation is the disassembly. In thedisassembly, it displays the ASCIIvalue of the byte to the right. Thebinary numbers on the far right aredisplayed when an instruction on theaccumulator in immediate mode isencountered.

 

I'm not 100% clear whether this Freeze non-autostart was intended for use with Integer ROM's or Applesoft. There is mention of Integer, and that would make sense for a cracker as they could also install Watson and The Inspector ROM's at D0/D8  :) Anyone know anything about it?

 

So, this has me keen to do another ROM replacement board for the character ROM! Regular character ROM, Lower Case, JPlus, and Pig Font for starters. Its possible I might even be able to use this current board (possibly with some slight mods) - at least for testing.

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Maybe I should just send you

Maybe I should just send you my whole collection. :-)  Working on that now.  Stay tuned...

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Very cool with all these ROMs

Very cool with all these ROMs and possibilities - can't wait to test! :-)

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mi2k wrote:I recall that
mi2k wrote:

I recall that there was a diagnostics firmware on the “multiROM” card by DM. from Australia, but it only was a RAM check..

 

A full onboard RAM test, that can pinpoin bad RAM chips, is itself worthwile; although IDK how well it would work with mixed 4K and 16K jumper blocks. Onboard ROM tests wouldn't be all too useful, given that this replaces all of the normal ROM space. The other onboard tests that you'd want are paddle tests, cassette interface tests, video tests (colour bar, and video mode), and slot tests. 

 

In general, the RAM test is the one that is almost impossible to do from diskette. If your RAM works to load a disk to test it, chances are that it is fine; and if it isn't, you still can't test the RAM containing the RAM test programme itself. This is why most RAM tests are performed from the monitor. 

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If someone can write relocatable code...

If someone can write relocatable code to a diagnostic application (described above) to fit into the D8OO-DFFF ROM space, this would be uniquely useful.

This would fit perfectly with the Integer ROMs with  DOOO n- D7FF Programmer's aid utility.

The Inspector / Dr. Watson pair would be the alternative to that.

 

... thinking out loud.

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Looking at the character ROM

Looking at the character ROM board, I'm hoping the same board could be used to replace the ROM on the language card.  I think that might be handy, as the language card will overide the onboard ROMS and you dont really want to have to remove it.  Also toying with the idea of adding an additional jumper to the main PCB to allow 16 ROM selections - though this may be overkill if the F8 ROM on the language card can also be switched?

 

Apple II schematic references are a bit conflicted - some state that the Signetics 2513 character generator was used, whilst others refer to a 2316 ROM that was programmed to behave like a 2513 - they are very different pinouts. Will dig into this some more and take a better look at the boards that I have of this era (Apple ][, Apple ][ europlus). One of the service notes refers to VC (A2) on pin 13 - that doesn't match either pinout! Most schematics show a 2513 pinout. a quick check for -12V on pin 1 should tell me which is right! 2513 also has -5V on pin 12 with ground on pin 10.

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Ahh- looks like the change

Ahh- looks like the change from a 2513 to a 2316 ROM came with the Rev 7 motherboards. I finally found a schematic - it must be a special version of a 2316 ( the schematic does say its a 2316B SPCL) as the chip selects are different to a regular 2316 ROM - they are the same as 2716 eprom which they do say can be swapped in.  Anyway the schematic is here if anyone wants to compare it with the earlier revision board  which uses the 2513 (eg schematic from the Red Book)- : https://www.apple.asimov.net/documentation/hardware/schematics/Schematic_Diagram_of_the_Apple_II.pdf

 

I'll initially target this revision of motherboard onward for a switchable character rom board, and then circle back to the earlier revisions - Ideally I'll  add solder jumpers to select between 2513 and 2316b modes.

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I suppose I should have asked

I suppose I should have asked whether anyone would be interested in a switchable character/video ROM, and or a switchable Language card ROM! I'm just killing time while I wait for the boards to turn up :)

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I think a switchable character ROM would be a great idea

I think a switchable character ROM would be a great idea, but you would need to consider both early and late motherboard styles to make it practical.

I'd buy a few for sure.

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Hi all,

Hi all,

 

Just a quick update. I have the new PCB's however I'm working with Jeff Mazur to add some absolutely killer features to this product. I won't go into the details just now (until it's all tested and working), but all going well this is going to be AWESOME! Hang tight - stay safe :)

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Super exciting, put me on the wish list!

I was going through my stack of 6 II+ units today. This would have bee.n so much help. Please put me on the wishlist to buy 1!

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macnoyd wrote:I think a
macnoyd wrote:

I think a switchable character ROM would be a great idea, but you would need to consider both early and late motherboard styles to make it practical.

I'd buy a few for sure.

 

Same here, with the same reservation about mainboard revisions. You'd either need to produce two versions of the product, or one that works across both types. THB, producing two isn't a bad solution, as there are far more RFI systems out there, than there are early systems; so the people who need one for an early system can order one model, and everyone else would order the RFI model. 

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Dont worry - both versions

Dont worry - both versions are supported in one way or another - at this stage there are two different PCB's :)

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DeanClaxton wrote:Dont worry
DeanClaxton wrote:

Dont worry - both versions are supported in one way or another - at this stage there are two different PCB's :)

Sounds good to me. That product probably deserves its own thread. 

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I'll definitely line up for one of these now...

So today I got some more Apples and clones.

The Apple II+ clone has had all of it's ROMs "stolen" so one of these would allow me to, in turn, borrow ROMs from the Apple II+ and use this instead. (I'm sure it's not going to be that easy, but it's a starting point)

I'll most likley be buying two of these :-)

 

Chesh (Who is now the proud owner of an Apple IIe)

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CheshireNoir wrote:So today I
CheshireNoir wrote:

So today I got some more Apples and clones.

The Apple II+ clone has had all of it's ROMs "stolen" so one of these would allow me to, in turn, borrow ROMs from the Apple II+ and use this instead. (I'm sure it's not going to be that easy, but it's a starting point)

I'll most likley be buying two of these :-)

 

Chesh (Who is now the proud owner of an Apple IIe)

 

Which clone? It likely could use this, as-is, depending on how it was designed. 

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(Off Topic) No idea what my clone is.

I got nothing :-D

No label on the outside or on the board as far as I can see.

This may help someone identify it: It seems to have some "developer's board" holes along the left side of the board, so you could solder in your own components.

The 74LS138 seems to be in the right location :-D

 

Chesh

 

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CheshireNoir wrote:I got
CheshireNoir wrote:

I got nothing :-D

No label on the outside or on the board as far as I can see.

This may help someone identify it: It seems to have some "developer's board" holes along the left side of the board, so you could solder in your own components.

[[{"fid":"31196","view_mode":"default","fields":{"format":"default","alignment":"","field_file_image_alt_text[und][0][value]":"Exterior of

That looks to me to be a Lasar II, or some sort of offshoot. The ROMs should work.

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most clones boards are laid

most clones boards are laid out for EPROMs. Installing mask ROMs from real IIs into one would be a bad idea.

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dorkbert wrote:most clones
dorkbert wrote:

most clones boards are laid out for EPROMs. Installing mask ROMs from real IIs into one would be a bad idea.

That's true. Some clones were esigned to use 2716s, not 9316s. Others were a 1:1 clone board, and shipped without ROMs, but offered a Slot 0 ROM card. You will need to check the mainboard to see if it is wired for the 2716 EPROM, or the 9316 MASK ROM. If it is already wired for EPROMs, then you can easily install a set. 

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[Off Topic] Showing my ignorance here.
Timelord wrote:
dorkbert wrote:

most clones boards are laid out for EPROMs. Installing mask ROMs from real IIs into one would be a bad idea.

That's true. Some clones were esigned to use 2716s, not 9316s. Others were a 1:1 clone board, and shipped without ROMs, but offered a Slot 0 ROM card. You will need to check the mainboard to see if it is wired for the 2716 EP

looks sheepish

So how does one go telling the two apart? I seem to remember some line being connected somewhere different?

 

I have a multimeter and a logic probe, and, at a pinch, a scope. What I don't have is a circuit diagram for the clone :-)

 

Chesh

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CheshireNoir wrote:Timelord
CheshireNoir wrote:
Timelord wrote:
dorkbert wrote:

most clones boards are laid out for EPROMs. Installing mask ROMs from real IIs into one would be a bad idea.

That's true. Some clones were esigned to use 2716s, not 9316s. Others were a 1:1 clone board, and shipped without ROMs, but offered a Slot 0 ROM card. You will need to check the mai

 

I know the feeling. I have clones in similar cases, but not the same mainboard.

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Regarding diagnosticsL I

Regarding diagnosticsL I wante to note that I have the Apple II assembly RAM test tape. This works on 4K (four KB) or larger systems, so perhaps we can adapt this to ROM?

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Possibly. Can you share the code?

Possibly.  Can you share the code?  Thanks for bringing this up.  Maybe we can create an F8 test ROM or a D8 Test ROM for Integer Basic.

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macnoyd wrote:Possibly.  Can
macnoyd wrote:

Possibly.  Can you share the code?  Thanks for bringing this up.  Maybe we can create an F8 test ROM or a D8 Test ROM for Integer Basic.

 

What would be the most logistically viable way of dumping it? It's a ML tape from Apple. The WAV for it is on apple2.org, here:

https://mirrors.apple2.org.za/Apple%20II%20Documentation%20Project/Software/Cassettes/RAM%20Test.wav

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New board sneak peek

Dean and I have been working on the new and improved ROMX board. He should have an update soon with details and ordering info, but I thought I would share a sneak peek of the boot screen that now allows you to select a ROM image from the keyboard. Lots of other cool features and some interesting resources related to this product.  And BTW, it also solves the phantom RAM power issue that often requires you leave the computer off for up to 30 seconds before turning back on. ROMX  guarantees a cold boot every time the computer is powered up.

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Psyche!

Psyche!  Can't wait!!!

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Hi all, Yes as promised, this

Hi all,

 

Yes as promised, this latest version of ROMX is looking absolutely awesome so far - just a couple of features still to be added, but we have a working proof of concept, with an initial batch of PCB's on the way!

 

Ok - the main features :

 

1. Same low profile, small footprint as the first board!

2. No switches! System boots the menu screen from the ROM at first powerup - all ROM selections are done from the keyboard!

3. 16 ROM images including the master boot image!

4. All 16 ROM images including the master boot image are user programmable in system!(!)

5. ROM-LINK interface to a text ROM board - with text ROM selection through the same menu!

6. You can set your default ROM image - system menu will time out and boot your default!

7. Info (128 bytes) can be stored for each image (this feature is in progress)!

8. We've registered the domain theromexchange.com - will be used to share ROM images!

 

That's a lot of bangs (!) for your buck - as far as the buck goes we are yet to set a price but initial target is around the US$50 mark. There will be bundles with Text ROM boards as well. In regard to the Text ROM, there are 2 versions - pre rev 7 (2516) and post rev 7 (2316B SPCL). The pre rev 7 board set will upgrade the text capabilities to that of the rev 7 :)

 

More info soon - some pictures for now :

 

 

 

Note that the JTAG header is for the CPLD - I'll likely change the footprint for the production PCB.

 

Wow - it all started out with a comment from Jeff about in system programmability which I initially dismissed. I'm glad I discussed it further with Jeff - boy he knows the Apple ][ inside and out :)

 

 

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Whoa!

That featureset escalated fast! Very very impressive!

Let us all know when these become available. I am sure they'll sell like hotcakes.

 

Chesh

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Put me down for 2

Put me down for 2.  Maybe more.  Also, if you need beta testing, I'm here to help.

LOVE the AUS/USA Logo BTW... fancy!

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macnoyd wrote:Put me down for
macnoyd wrote:

Put me down for 2.  Maybe more.  Also, if you need beta testing, I'm here to help.

LOVE the AUS/USA Logo BTW... fancy!

 

Awesome! I can't take credit for the logo -  I found that online. It was developed to celebrate 100 years of  cooperation between US and Australian military I believe - Mateship. I was looking for something suitable and found that - perfect! I'm not sure how well it will come out on the PCB, but I'm hoping to get the initial small batch this coming week with a bit of luck.  Of course I'll be posting some photos when I have them, and will also put together a demo video of the ROMX operating. Its very cool to be able to program an image in-system - Jeff did a great job on the software side. It's as simple as BLOADing a 12KB image into the $2000 address space, then running up the menu and uploading it to a bank. There is a standalone version of the software that can be booted from a floppy disk as well. 

 

Oh - I also resolved the pin header compatibility issue with the vintage sockets - I have pin headers that are only 0.3mm thick and slip into the vintage sockets just fine without damaging them.

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Timelord wrote:dorkbert wrote
Timelord wrote:
dorkbert wrote:

most clones boards are laid out for EPROMs. Installing mask ROMs from real IIs into one would be a bad idea.

That's true. Some clones were esigned to use 2716s, not 9316s. Others were a 1:1 clone board, and shipped without ROMs, but offered a Slot 0 ROM card. You will need to check the mainboard to see if it is wired for the 2716 EP

 

Other than hobbist replica boards, I have not seen a clone board laid out for mask ROMs.

Asian boards are designed for ease of manufacturing, and would be laid out for EPROMs as EPROMs have much lower entry cost.

In genral, it's safe to assume Asian boards are all laid out for EPROMs.

Speciality "replica" boards and "licensed clones" are much more likely to have been laid out for mask ROMs.

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DeanClaxton wrote:It's as
DeanClaxton wrote:
It's as simple as BLOADing a 12KB image into the $2000 address space...

 That's how it's works right now. The ulimate goal however is to include DOS in the ROM. Then immediately after power on you will be able to load images directly from disk!

 

dorkbert wrote:

most clones boards are laid out for EPROMs..

 

Good news is that ROMX will work in motherboards designed for both ROM and EPROM!!

 

 

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As I understand, if no image

As I understand, if no image is set, you see a menu to set an image, and the card stores your preerence; and you can change that by holding a key uring startup.

 

Is that correct?

 You don't need to use the menu at every power on, do you? That'd be rather annoying after a while. 

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Timelord wrote:As I
Timelord wrote:

As I understand, if no image is set, you see a menu to set an image, and the card stores your preerence; and you can change that by holding a key uring startup.

 

Is that correct?

 You don't need to use the menu at every power on, do you? That'd be rather annoying after a while. 

There is ALWAYS a default image and that boots if no keys are pressed within a second or so after turning on the computer. Sort of like a splash screen; we considered doing that, but the menu seems more useful. 

 

If you press a bank key during the initial window, it will immediately boot that image (without changing the default). Any other key will cause the menu will stay up and you can then type 1) a bank key to again immediately boot that bank, or 2) a command key to upload an image, change the default, etc. Hope that makes sense.

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jeffmazur wrote:Good news is
jeffmazur wrote:
Good news is that ROMX will work in motherboards designed for both ROM and EPROM!!

Well that's an extra sale to me :-D

 

I'll get one for my clone II+ as well.

 

This is amazing work!

 

Chesh 

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jeffmazur wrote:Timelord
jeffmazur wrote:
Timelord wrote:

As I understand, if no image is set, you see a menu to set an image, and the card stores your preerence; and you can change that by holding a key uring startup.

 

Is that correct?

 You don't need to use the menu at every power on, do you? That'd be rather annoying after a while. 

There is ALWAYS a de

Sorry to say, that this is a case where a phyisical switch would be my personal preference. Needing to hold down keys an go through extra menus on boot, every time, is a bloody nuisance. If you still have a version of the board layout with the physical switch, I would like to order some of those. All of this other stuff, while fancy, isn't as practical as setting a toggle switch for a common peference. 

 

If it remembered your last selection, and only gave you an option to select a different image when you held a key, that'd be fine, but this is pretty much a dealbreaker for a drop-in replacement Integer set, or other primary set, as it entirely interrupts the flow of working with the machine through resets, and does not allow 1:1 ROM replacement with a single custom set that you want to use on every boot. 

 

For me, this single design change means that instead of buying a dozen of these, I'd buy one, and put it in a non-primary system as an experimental tool; as it no longer replaces the existing ROM without altering how the system operates, so, rather than pulling the ROMs from every system that I have an replacing them with this kit, I would need to add a system to my workstations, just to use it. I'd rather have the older revision with three or four ROM sets and no fancy features.

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I would prefer the softswitch approach

I would prefer the soft-switch approach as planned, as you can set whatever default ROM bank you want to boot from at startup.  Most use the same ROM for most of their work, but being able to select it at boot (by holding down a key or keys) makes it work as a very cool option, selectable from the keyboard, as it should be.

I'm for the soft-switch approach.  No one likes attaching external switches eminating from boards within the computer.

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I suppose the best thing is

To clarify, there is no need to hold or press any keys at power up if you want to boot your default ROM. The menu is displayed, but quickly times out if no keys are pressed, after which the default ROM will be loaded.  I suppose the best thing is that the startup code is not locked in - it can be updated! This means that we can always perhaps look at other options in regard to whether the menu is displayed always, or only if  a particular key is pressed at startup (or something along those lines). We did look at that earlier on but had trouble with reading the keyboard during reset. There may be other ways and perhaps ultimately this may be user configurable - Jeff is the best one to comment on that.

 

Here's the proof of concept running in my europlus machine :

 

 

And hooked up to a logic analyser for timing analysis/debugging :

 

 

The original prototype can be seen sitting on the PSU, looking on in wonder.

 

For the POC I wired a CPLD breakout board onto one of the later PCB's - with the logic probes attached it was like wrestlng with an octopus! I'm very much looking forward to getting the next batch with the CPLD slung underneath.

 

 

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Timelord wrote:Needing to
Timelord wrote:
Needing to hold down keys an go through extra menus on boot, every time, is a bloody nuisance.

 Not sure if you read or understood my last response. It DOES remember your default selection and automatically boots it upon power up with no keypresses needed. Think of the initial menu display as a splash screen reminding you that the ROMX is there and showing you which image will load. The actual delay before loading is very short (and can be user selectable; even set to 0 but then you would need to run the disk version to upload images, etc.)

 

Also, subsequent RESETs are not affected at all. The only time the menu comes up is at power on. Although it is possible to bring up the ROM menu via software if anyone wants to do that. And best of all, this small delay (if you choose to accept it) is still MUCH SHORTER than the time you should normally wait before turning the power back on.

 

I hope this answers your concerns and you see the benefits of this board.

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That remains ambiguous in at

That remains ambiguous in at least one critical detail. 

 

If I select a ROM image, and power off, with a splash screen set to 0 (not shown), does it boot into the last-selected image every time, instantly?

 

I would personally still want to order some hard-switch boards. They are far more friendly toward software development and testing.  Flipping one toggle switch in a small box and keeping a static setting has distinct advantages for my workflow and my general preferences. 

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macnoyd wrote:I would prefer
macnoyd wrote:

I would prefer the soft-switch approach as planned, as you can set whatever default ROM bank you want to boot from at startup.  Most use the same ROM for most of their work, but being able to select it at boot (by holding down a key or keys) makes it work as a very cool option, selectable from the keyboard, as it should be.

I'm for the soft-switch approach.  No one likes attaching external switches eminating from boards within the computer.

I have to disagree with the last statement. I would attach a hard-switch to absolutely everything if it improved efficiency. Mind you, I am an old bugger, used to these toggles, and I spend most of my time developing software and hardware for old micros. As a software and hardware designer, I prefer hard-switches whenever possible. I still use shared devices on peripheral switches, as well. Videx is one of my few exceptions, as when enabled, you cannot do anything useful with the 40col signal.
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In our old age, we all have our preverences...

 

      Timelord wrote:

      Mind you, I am an old bugger, used to these toggles, and I spend most of my time developing software and hardware for old micros.

 

Yeah, I think I also fit into that same category...  (see my "about")...

As a software and hardware design Engineer,  I prefer soft switches. 

After all, the Apple II is full of them. (soft switches)

Advancing the technology is what we're supposed to do as engineers.

Old habits die hard.  ;-)  Even for us old fellas.

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