Search found 223 matches

by Ramtop
Sun Jul 05, 2020 7:37 pm
Forum: off-topic
Topic: Rapid not selling 60/40 to general punters anymore?
Replies: 10
Views: 241

Re: Rapid not selling 60/40 to general punters anymore?

I ran into this recently trying to order some solder from RS. Added it to the basket, confirmed the order... then they silently deleted the solder from the order and never shipped it. Happened three separate times, RS support ignored my email and eventually I had complain on twitter before they coul...
by Ramtop
Thu Jul 02, 2020 6:46 pm
Forum: general
Topic: Apple goes ARM
Replies: 31
Views: 1107

Re: Apple goes ARM

I'm not sure it's Apple losing the plot so much as they don't much care about the high-end 'creator' market any more. They haven't been able to compete there for a long time; the trashcan Mac was lacklustre even when it was new and the cheesegrater is little better. Apple putting 28 core Xeons again...
by Ramtop
Wed Jul 01, 2020 10:23 pm
Forum: general
Topic: Apple goes ARM
Replies: 31
Views: 1107

Re: Apple goes ARM

Despite that, there wasn't much software available for the other processors and eventually they gave up and went x86 only. yet Linux is available for very many processors and most of the software than runs on it is too. The difference, I suspect, is how it is delivered. The shrink-wrapped package d...
by Ramtop
Wed Jul 01, 2020 10:12 pm
Forum: for sale / freebies
Topic: Electron SD Interface & SW Ram Expansion
Replies: 48
Views: 4970

Re: Electron SD Interface & SW Ram Expansion

Oops! :D

If it's any consolation, sales on EBay are what funds development of new designs. So you've helped make sure I'll be able to keep releasing new stuff for the Electron in future.
by Ramtop
Sun Jun 28, 2020 3:41 pm
Forum: 8-bit acorn hardware
Topic: Ready-made devices to connect BBC Micro to HDMI monitor
Replies: 12
Views: 575

Re: Ready-made devices to connect BBC Micro to HDMI monitor

I decided to stop cheaping out and bought an OSSC. That it's really not an easy device to use has been my main impression. The firmware could seriously do with some input from a user interface specialist. But I can't argue with the image quality. It looks absolutely superb, worlds ahead of the cheap...
by Ramtop
Fri Jun 26, 2020 12:56 pm
Forum: 8-bit acorn hardware
Topic: BBC B main board capacitors
Replies: 8
Views: 295

Re: BBC B main board capacitors

An A1200 without leaking caps! :shock: :D I've opened up dozens of A1200s and they all had leaking from the caps to some extent, although some of the ESCOM/AT built models seem to have only started leaking in the last few years. In the early stages leaking isn't always visually detectable until you ...
by Ramtop
Thu Jun 25, 2020 10:35 pm
Forum: 8-bit acorn hardware
Topic: Electron ULA Basic Board
Replies: 82
Views: 2574

Re: Electron ULA Basic Board

In terms of soldering the FPGA. I've included the technique I used in the BOM on github. I must admit this didn't include the central pad. I applied solder paste to it and then heated with a hot air gun after drag soldering the pins. I can't be sure its soldered but that's what I did. When I was de...
by Ramtop
Tue Jun 23, 2020 1:33 pm
Forum: general
Topic: Apple goes ARM
Replies: 31
Views: 1107

Re: Apple goes ARM

My suspicion is this has more to do with Apple having gaining control over a critical part of their designs then outright performance. I'd love to see ARM being competitive in raw speed with x86, but every attempt to do that has failed so far. This move must have been in the works for several years,...
by Ramtop
Mon Jun 22, 2020 9:03 pm
Forum: general
Topic: Apple goes ARM
Replies: 31
Views: 1107

Apple goes ARM

Well, as long expected Apple are switching Macs from x86 to ARM: https://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2020/06/this-is-apples-roadmap-for-moving-the-first-macs-away-from-intel/ It's going to be interesting to see how much performance they can get from their ARM designs, and if it'll be competitive with x8...
by Ramtop
Mon Jun 22, 2020 12:19 pm
Forum: 8-bit acorn hardware
Topic: Ready-made devices to connect BBC Micro to HDMI monitor
Replies: 12
Views: 575

Re: Ready-made devices to connect BBC Micro to HDMI monitor

I've had a GBS8220 for a while but it must be a particularly bad one as it has major noise and sparkles, even with some copper tape on the back of the PCB. I know there's a mod that can be done to replace controller with a better one, but I've never had the time to try that. Because I have so many r...
by Ramtop
Thu Jun 18, 2020 6:12 pm
Forum: 8-bit acorn software: classic games
Topic: Acornsoft Elite
Replies: 73
Views: 6021

Re: Acornsoft Elite

I suppose Frontier was a game well ahead of the hardware at the time it was released, which I could equally be said of the original Elite given how limited it was by lack of memory. On my A1200, the accelerator sped it up by around 3-4 times over a stock machine, but that still meant single figure f...
by Ramtop
Thu Jun 18, 2020 4:40 pm
Forum: 8-bit acorn hardware
Topic: Ready-made devices to connect BBC Micro to HDMI monitor
Replies: 12
Views: 575

Re: Ready-made devices to connect BBC Micro to HDMI monitor

I have one of those £20 things off Amazon and it seems fine: the long delay to get rid of the resolution change OSD is very annoying. One issue with the cheap 20 quid converters that may not be immediately apparent is their horrendous lag. I used one of these with an Electron during development of ...
by Ramtop
Thu Jun 18, 2020 1:57 pm
Forum: general
Topic: Today I received.....
Replies: 5859
Views: 527213

Re: Today I received.....

Boydie wrote:
Thu Jun 18, 2020 12:20 pm
That's the Amiga itch scratched. :D
I know that feeling! :D This just arrived half an hour ago:
a500_1.jpg
and posing for a family portrait :
a500_2.jpg
by Ramtop
Thu Jun 18, 2020 1:09 am
Forum: 8-bit acorn software: classic games
Topic: Acornsoft Elite
Replies: 73
Views: 6021

Re: Acornsoft Elite

I agree with that, Daniel. I spent a lot of time trying to get into Frontier, but it was ultimately little fun compared to the original. As a simulation of the galaxy and a feat of coding, i’m sure it was remarkable, but that wasn’t what I was after as a teenager in the 1990s. It also didn’t help t...
by Ramtop
Mon Jun 15, 2020 11:35 pm
Forum: general
Topic: Today I received.....
Replies: 5859
Views: 527213

Re: Today I received.....

Four now, although one has a bad ULA and is mostly a parts donor.
by Ramtop
Mon Jun 15, 2020 6:08 pm
Forum: general
Topic: Today I received.....
Replies: 5859
Views: 527213

Re: Today I received.....

My mission to buy up the world's remaining supply of Electrons continues... :D

newelk.jpg
by Ramtop
Mon Jun 08, 2020 5:09 pm
Forum: 8-bit acorn hardware
Topic: Elksd-plus1 Interface
Replies: 15
Views: 890

Re: Elksd-plus1 Interface

I may have been guilty of being over optimistic here. #-o The 'super-fast' design was a reference to the high-speed SPI controller which is used to handle the SD cards on the FPGA-based ElkVGA prototype. That tops out at 53K/sec read and 41K/sec writes on the Elk, which puts reads around 9x faster t...
by Ramtop
Mon Jun 08, 2020 2:15 pm
Forum: other events + general event chat
Topic: General chat and feedback relating to the ABug video archives
Replies: 6
Views: 285

Re: General chat and feedback relating to the ABug video archives

I didn't realise you'd ordered an ElkSD! Have fun with it :D

I'm going to try to be there for the July event. Not sure about a presentation, but I may have some interesting bits and pieces to show.
by Ramtop
Sun Jun 07, 2020 10:41 pm
Forum: other events + general event chat
Topic: General chat and feedback relating to the ABug video archives
Replies: 6
Views: 285

Re: General chat and feedback relating to the ABug video archives

Many thanks for taking the time to post these. I haven't been able to attend any of the virtual meetups so far, and the videos are hugely useful. Dominic's PCB advice and 0xCODE's demo coding talk were particularly interesting.
by Ramtop
Sun Jun 07, 2020 3:45 pm
Forum: 8-bit acorn hardware
Topic: Elksd-plus1 Interface
Replies: 15
Views: 890

Re: Elksd-plus1 Interface

I agree, unsurprisingly :D

Decided to actually push ahead with this. The prototype is working very well and the outlay involved is low as it's identical hardware to the ElkSD-Plus1; if the 'MasterSD' flops I can just convert them to ElkSDs.
by Ramtop
Mon Jun 01, 2020 9:55 pm
Forum: 8-bit acorn hardware
Topic: Electron ULA Basic Board
Replies: 82
Views: 2574

Re: Electron ULA Basic Board

Interesting! Do you synthesize your own CPU clock signal? Hoglet figured out a while back that you could fix up a noisy PHI0 signal by doing something like this: Nothing so clever, I'm afraid (although I do employ a similar PHI0 rebuild trick on my ElkVGA board). I got a pleasingly low price on a l...
by Ramtop
Mon Jun 01, 2020 8:08 pm
Forum: 8-bit acorn hardware
Topic: Electron ULA Basic Board
Replies: 82
Views: 2574

Re: Electron ULA Basic Board

I have to be the bearer of bad news; my ElkSD64 interface was designed on the assumption that the 16MHz and CPU clocks are in sync. There is a degree of leeway, but if the clocks are completely unsynced then it's going to fail pretty much right away. To be honest I think trying to use the m/board cl...
by Ramtop
Mon Jun 01, 2020 5:32 pm
Forum: 8-bit acorn hardware
Topic: Electron ULA Basic Board
Replies: 82
Views: 2574

Re: Electron ULA Basic Board

Very, very nice! If you're going to make these I'd absolutely buy one. From hard experience I know you can't trust the motherboard 16MHz clock signal; on early versions of my SD interface I rather naively just ran it straight into the CPLD and ended up with a circa 5% failure rate because the raw cl...
by Ramtop
Sun May 31, 2020 6:26 pm
Forum: 8-bit acorn hardware
Topic: Elksd-plus1 Interface
Replies: 15
Views: 890

Re: Elksd-plus1 Interface

I should have remembered to post something about this, sorry! The new, faster revision 2 cartridges are finished and presently on sale via Ebay. I haven't made them available at a discount in the For Sale forum yet because sales on Ebay have been far higher than I expected - the rev 2 is proving to ...
by Ramtop
Wed May 27, 2020 10:32 pm
Forum: off-topic
Topic: 3D printing advice
Replies: 173
Views: 3992

Re: 3D printing advice

Has anyone tried Amazon basics? That is a good price but has been sold out since the start of Cov19 generally. I have been using Sunlu, which was the cheapest named brand that anyone had in stock at the time. That is £25/kg, so interest in cheaper if good (and in stock). Amazon Basics is generally ...
by Ramtop
Wed May 27, 2020 12:12 am
Forum: 8-bit acorn hardware
Topic: HELP NEEDED - BBC Master Compact & SD2BBC Not Working
Replies: 25
Views: 864

Re: HELP NEEDED - BBC Master Compact & SD2BBC Not Working

May be a good idea to speak to the supplier of the SD interface and ask if they can take it back and test it. Although it does sound like you might have a bad 6522 VIA, which is not trivial to fix as it's soldered in place.
by Ramtop
Mon May 25, 2020 12:41 pm
Forum: 8-bit acorn hardware
Topic: XC9500XL phaseout
Replies: 26
Views: 1021

Re: XC9500XL phaseout

IanB wrote:
Mon May 25, 2020 2:21 am
Farnell prices for the XC9572XL -10 and -7 have just quadrupled. The -10 is now £14.736 inc VAT!
Meanwhile Mouser and Digikey are back to normal pricing. (£3.58 inc VAT)
Farnell being as amazingly efficient as normal :(
by Ramtop
Tue May 12, 2020 6:43 pm
Forum: 8-bit acorn hardware
Topic: Elksd-plus1 Interface
Replies: 15
Views: 890

Re: Elksd-plus1 Interface

Yep. More should be available shortly, possibly as soon as next week. Can't say a date for sure yet as the next batch is the first run of the new revision 2 boards, which are quite a bit different from the old rev 1 model. I'm still testing the new ROM that's required for the rev 2 hardware, but it'...
by Ramtop
Sat May 09, 2020 3:28 pm
Forum: 8-bit acorn hardware
Topic: XC9500XL phaseout
Replies: 26
Views: 1021

Re: XC9500XL phaseout

I've been doing the same and have actually been surprised how quickly CPLDs stop making sense from a cost perspective. Small FPGAs are so incredibly cheap now, and the buffers needed to wire one to the 6502 bus only add up to about £2. The big unknown for me is the packaging. A lot of the cheaper pa...
by Ramtop
Sat May 09, 2020 12:44 am
Forum: 8-bit acorn hardware
Topic: XC9500XL phaseout
Replies: 26
Views: 1021

Re: XC9500XL phaseout

Prices have (mostly) gone back to normal, at least at Digikey, and stock level looks very healthy.

I do wonder what the point of this was, all it seems to have achieved is to make buyers of XC9500XLs take a good hard look at other parts.

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