Turning a Music 500 into a Music 5000 but with a switch to revert the change

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SimonSideburns
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Turning a Music 500 into a Music 5000 but with a switch to revert the change

Post by SimonSideburns » Sun Feb 09, 2020 9:00 pm

I have a Music 500. After some in depth conversations at Abug in January, I have been looked at what's involved in turning it into a Music 5000. I have seen a video detailing the mod, and how to do it, but I am uncertain as to whether or not it is a good idea to make the modification permanent.

My problem is that I have been playing with the Music 500 and it seems fine to use, and I'm not aware what benefits there are to having a 5000 over a 500, so rather than solder the resistor on and cutting the track making the transition only one way, what about running a few wires to a switch attached to the front panel of the 500 which would then allow me to either use it as a 500 or a 5000?

Does the software for the 500 only work on the 500, and vice versa, or can either device use all the software for both systems? I'm guessing not as I already have some Music 5000 floppies which I believe I've had working fine.

I'm hoping someone who knows the systems more than I do can provide me with some information delving into the differences, and as to whether making the mod configurable via a switch can be, and/or should be done.

I'm not worried about keeping the system vanilla, as someone (the previous owner presumably) has already in the past drilled into the front of the device and added an LED to show when it is powered up.

I wish I didn't have such a curious mind at times, otherwise I'd just get on and do the mod (permanently) without needing to ask loads of questions first.
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danielj
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Re: Turning a Music 500 into a Music 5000 but with a switch to revert the change

Post by danielj » Sun Feb 09, 2020 9:04 pm

The only difference between the 500 and the 5000 is that the 5000 has had a resistor added to make it play better with the Master's 1MHz bus. It will still work perfectly well on the BBC Micro.

In so far as the software, you can use the 5000 (AMPLE Nucleus) software with an unmodified synth, the 500 software with a modified one and vice versa.

No need for switches or anything to worry about! No need to do any modifications unless you're using it with a master and it's not working.

d.

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Re: Turning a Music 500 into a Music 5000 but with a switch to revert the change

Post by SimonSideburns » Sun Feb 09, 2020 9:26 pm

Ah, so the only difference is whether I am going to be using it on a Master or not. That's useful to know.

I do have a Master that I've never quite got around to changing the PSU caps on, and therefore I've never had it plugged in or switched on (as far as I can recall anyway), so I might not bother doing anything for now, and then simply make the mod and put the machine to good use as a Music 5000 system when I get around to getting the Master up and running.

Thanks for the assistance.
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Re: Turning a Music 500 into a Music 5000 but with a switch to revert the change

Post by SimonSideburns » Sun Feb 09, 2020 9:33 pm

There's only one other query.

The Beeb I bought in a joblot with the Music 500, 4000 keyboard and other stuff has the Ample ROM installed.

Most of the floppies I archived to my DataCentre auto boot and in !boot they have the line *AMPLE which, for certain disks is trying to run the software version on the floppy. If I remember to change it to */AMPLE and then re-export the floppy that's fine, but otherwise the machine ends up in the ROM based AMPLE and then won't run any (many?) of the sample programs, throwing up the Too Big error. Yet, when typing MEM or MEMORY it shows over 20K free in the Ample ROM and around 8K free when running the same command after loading up the software based Ample.

I understand the Ample ROM ID (or whatever it's called) is used as some form of protection, but I don't fully understand what's going on and wonder if these Too Big errors are something to do with that.

Can anyone confirm my suspicions, or do you have a better explanation for these Too Big errors and how to get around them.

I'm still learning (slowly) the Hybrid system and things like this seem frustrating as there doesn't seem to be any sense to them.
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danielj
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Re: Turning a Music 500 into a Music 5000 but with a switch to revert the change

Post by danielj » Sun Feb 09, 2020 9:35 pm

If they were designed for the 500, then they won't work with the AMPLE ROM. The language changed :)

d.

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Re: Turning a Music 500 into a Music 5000 but with a switch to revert the change

Post by SimonSideburns » Mon Feb 10, 2020 11:27 am

I wonder if there's any way to convert programs for Music 500 to the Ample ROM format.

What are the differences?

Presumably the ROM has more commands. I guess I need to start reading the manuals.
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Re: Turning a Music 500 into a Music 5000 but with a switch to revert the change

Post by danielj » Mon Feb 10, 2020 11:47 am

No idea - I think it was fundamentally different in both concept and application.

d.

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