Matchbox sized 6502 / Z80 / 6809 Co Pro

discussion of games, software, hardware & emulators relating to the Acorn Atom and Acorn System machines.
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hoglet
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Re: Matchbox sized 6502 / Z80 / 6809 Co Pro

Post by hoglet » Sat Feb 21, 2015 5:23 pm

jgharston wrote:Here: this one which appears to be on page 18, not page 19. I'm not sure how I managed to type 19 instead of 18.
Brill, thanks.

I've just tried this and it works on the 6502 Co Pro. I also extended the test, and was able to successfully transfer in both directions.

I also wrote a test using OSWORD &FA on the x86 Co Pro.

I first tested by test program with type 0/1 transfers, and was able to copy a block of memory from the parasite to the host and then back again.

So, I then tried using type 2/3 transfers, and these did not work. I also tried type 0/3 and type 1/2, and neither of these combinations worked.

So it looks like two-byte mode is broken in the x86 Co Pro in both directions, but is possibly working in the 6502 Co Pro. Is it possible this is an OSWORD &FA issue?

I really need some more data points on this one....Who was it that discovered the original Econet issue at Halifax?

Dave

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Re: Matchbox sized 6502 / Z80 / 6809 Co Pro

Post by hoglet » Sat Feb 21, 2015 5:59 pm

This is interesting:
http://www.cowsarenotpurple.co.uk/bbcco ... ndix-F.txt
In addition word transfers seem to be inconsistently unreliable. Single
byte transfers of types 0 and 1 and page transfers (types 6 and 7)
appear to be reliable provided that writing to ACCCON is prevented.
However, word transfers from the 512 (type 2) sometimes do not function
correctly, sometimes doing nothing at all (including the transfer)
occasionally hanging the system.

On balance however, type two transfers probably function correctly more
often than not. The fault is extremely obscure, but so far as testing
has been able to determine, it appears to depend on a combination of
both the host target address and the type of transfer performed the last
time the routine was called.

The only consistent fact to emerge from lengthy tests is that if any
specific type 2 transfer in a sequence of transfers does fail, it can be
reproduced and will fail consistently unless one of the attendant
conditions is changed. If this particular problem is encountered users
are advised to avoid it if possible by changing the target address
rather than attempting to find the cause.
Dave

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Re: Matchbox sized 6502 / Z80 / 6809 Co Pro

Post by jgharston » Sat Feb 21, 2015 6:36 pm

hoglet wrote:I really need some more data points on this one....Who was it that discovered the original Econet issue at Halifax?
((waves))

Code: Select all

$ bbcbasic
PDP11 BBC BASIC IV Version 0.25
(C) Copyright J.G.Harston 1989,2005-2015
>_

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Re: Matchbox sized 6502 / Z80 / 6809 Co Pro

Post by hoglet » Sat Feb 21, 2015 6:44 pm

Hi Jonathan,

What Co Pro type(s) did you hit the two-byte mode issues with at Halifax?

I would have been present in them all, but I'm interested in which ones were being used, so I can focus on testing these first.

This was discovered using Econet, correct?

Is the Master 512 reliable when connected to an Econet, and would this be using the 2-byte transfer mode implemented via OSWORD &FA, or via code in the Econet ROM?

I was somewhat perturbed by my two-byte mode OSWORD &FA tests failing miserably. I'm hoping maybe this would also fail on a real Master 512.

Dave

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Re: Matchbox sized 6502 / Z80 / 6809 Co Pro

Post by danielj » Sat Feb 21, 2015 6:56 pm

Hi Dave, it was the 6502.

d.

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Re: Matchbox sized 6502 / Z80 / 6809 Co Pro

Post by RobC » Sat Feb 21, 2015 7:18 pm

hoglet wrote:I was somewhat perturbed by my two-byte mode OSWORD &FA tests failing miserably. I'm hoping maybe this would also fail on a real Master 512.
Hi Dave,

If you want to post your test code, I can run the test on a real M512.

Cheers,

Rob

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Re: Matchbox sized 6502 / Z80 / 6809 Co Pro

Post by hoglet » Sat Feb 21, 2015 7:32 pm

Hi Rob,
RobC wrote: If you want to post your test code, I can run the test on a real M512.
Here you go:
OSWORD.zip
(630 Bytes) Downloaded 50 times
Dave

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Re: Matchbox sized 6502 / Z80 / 6809 Co Pro

Post by hoglet » Sat Feb 21, 2015 9:36 pm

Hi all,

Here's a new build that contains a faster version of the Z80 Co Pro:
LX9CoProCombined_20150221_2106_dmb.zip
(1.05 MiB) Downloaded 50 times
Thus has been pushed to github.

Here's the latest table of switch settings:

Code: Select all

0 0 0 0 -  4MHz 65C102 (512KB external RAM using Jason's paging extensions)
0 0 0 1 -  8MHz Z80    ( 64KB external RAM)
0 0 1 0 -  4MHz 6809   ( 64KB external RAM)
0 0 1 1 - 16Mhz 80x86  (512KB external RAM)  
0 1 0 0 - BIST
0 1 0 1 - unused
0 1 1 0 - unused
0 1 1 1 - unused
1 0 0 0 - 32MHz 65C102 (64KB internal RAM, boot message shows speed)
1 0 0 1 - 16MHz 65C102 (64KB internal RAM, boot message shows speed)
1 0 1 0 -  8MHz 65C102 (64KB internal RAM, boot message shows speed)
1 0 1 1 -  4MHz 65C102 (64KB internal RAM, boot message shows speed)
1 1 0 0 - 36MHz Z80    (64KB internal RAM, boot message shows speed)
1 1 0 1 - 24MHz Z80    (64KB internal RAM, boot message shows speed)
1 1 1 0 - 12MHz Z80    (64KB internal RAM, boot message shows speed)
1 1 1 1 -  8MHz Z80    (64KB internal RAM, boot message shows speed)
None of the other Co Pros have changed significantly, although all have been recompiled.

Dave

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Re: Matchbox sized 6502 / Z80 / 6809 Co Pro

Post by jgharston » Sat Feb 21, 2015 9:52 pm

hoglet wrote:Here you go:
OSWORD.zip
Dave

Code: Select all

  230 A%=&FA
  240 X%=ow MOD 256
  250 Y%=ow DIV 256
You should get into the habit of using X%=ow (or simla') then X% has the full 32-bit address, and you won't get caught out when running on a platform with more than 64K of memory. It also means you can use X%?foo, X%!bar, etc. to access the control block.
hoglet wrote:Is the Master 512 reliable when connected to an Econet, and would this be using the 2-byte transfer mode implemented via OSWORD &FA, or via code in the Econet ROM?
The Master 512 Tube Client is hard-wired to look for a dosboot file on an ADFS drive, and the dosboot file is hard-wired to look for a :0.DOS.DRIVE_C file containing DRDOS on an ADFS drive, and DRDOS is hard-wired to look on an ADFS hard drive a :0.DOS.DRIVE_C file. There is no normal way of accessing files from Econet/NFS on a Master 512 unless doing so from the Client * prompt, or manually making OSFILE/OSFIND/etc calls from an application program. Consequently, it is very unlikely that anybody will have done much - or any - testing of file transfer with Econet/NFS and the Master 512.

So, technically, the M512 is "reliable" when connected to Econet in that it never uses it!

Code: Select all

$ bbcbasic
PDP11 BBC BASIC IV Version 0.25
(C) Copyright J.G.Harston 1989,2005-2015
>_

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Re: Matchbox sized 6502 / Z80 / 6809 Co Pro

Post by hoglet » Sun Feb 22, 2015 5:34 pm

Jonathan,

Thanks for the feedback on the Master 512. Sounds like it is quite possible a broken two-byte mode would have gone unnoticed. Lets see what Rob's testing reveals.

Dave

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Re: Matchbox sized 6502 / Z80 / 6809 Co Pro

Post by hoglet » Sun Feb 22, 2015 7:27 pm

Hi all,

This afternoon I've been doing some benchmarking of fast Z80 cores, using Jonathan's BBCBASIC CLOCKSP benchmark:
http://mdfs.net/Software/BBCBasic/Testing/

According to Jonathan's results, the "Combined Average" of the original 6MHz Acorn Z80 Second Processor was 2.51MHz. I've also seen the figure 2.68MHz quoted, but that's just splitting hairs.

Here's the results using the T80 core running at 36MHz:
IMG_0819.JPG
This works out as equivalent to clocking an original Z80A at 35MHz.

Pretty cool?

Just as I was doing this, BigEd PMed me and suggested I also try the NextZ80 core:
http://opencores.org/project,nextz80

Here's the results at the same 36MHz clock speed:
IMG_0815.JPG
This works out as equivalent to clocking an original Z80A at 143MHz. :shock: :shock: :shock:

It seems the NextZ80 core is much more efficient in terms of cycles/instruction than the original Z80, approx four times as efficient.

Now, the NextZ80 has some longer combinatorial logic paths than the T80, and doesn't quite meet Xilinx timing at 36MHz, so I've wound back the clock to 28MHz. Here's the final results:
IMG_0821.JPG
On the boot banner I've called this 112MHz (cf. the original 6MHz Z80A), and based on the BBC Basic benchmark that's slightly conservative:
IMG_0822.JPG
Here's an updated .MCS file:
LX9CoProCombined_20150222_1905_dmb.zip
(1.04 MiB) Downloaded 66 times
The only change since yesterday is the this faster Z80:

Code: Select all

1 1 0 0 - 112 MHz Z80    (64KB internal RAM, now using NextZ80 core)
1 1 0 1 -  56 MHz Z80    (64KB internal RAM, now using NextZ80 core)
1 1 1 0 -  32 MHz Z80    (64KB internal RAM, now using NextZ80 core)
1 1 1 1 -  16 MHz Z80    (64KB internal RAM, now using NextZ80 core)
Using DataCentre, CPM boots in 1.2 seconds. Who was it that was looking for a fast CPM machine ? :lol:

A big thanks to BigEd for making me aware of the NextZ80, and to it's author Nicolae Dumitrache.

Dave

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Re: Matchbox sized 6502 / Z80 / 6809 Co Pro

Post by RobC » Sun Feb 22, 2015 8:54 pm

Hi Dave,

I've finally managed to get your test program onto my M512's hard drive. Had loads of issues - PC's USB playing up, wouldn't format 3.5" disk to 360KB, RiscPC floppy drive wouldn't work - would have been quicker if I'd typed in the code!

Do you want me to run a particular sequence of transfer types or just hammer it?

Cheers,

Rob

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Re: Matchbox sized 6502 / Z80 / 6809 Co Pro

Post by iainjh » Sun Feb 22, 2015 9:16 pm

Dave, thats amazing! Thanks again for sharing this awesomeness, we are not worthy!

Bas TheCorfiot now has my co-pro for some flashing soon.. cant wait!

cheers, Iain :)

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Re: Matchbox sized 6502 / Z80 / 6809 Co Pro

Post by hoglet » Sun Feb 22, 2015 9:22 pm

Hi Rob,
RobC wrote:Do you want me to run a particular sequence of transfer types or just hammer it?
The program asks for the type for Transfer 1 and Transfer 2.

Transfer 1 is used to copy a block of test data from the parasite to the host, and the type must be either 0, 2 or 6.

Transfer 2 is used to copy the block back from the host to the parasite, and the type must be either 1, 3 or 7.

The block of test data is simply 0, 1, 2, ..., 0xFF

As a basic test, check the following combinations work:
- 0 and 1 (this is using one-type mode)
- 6 and 7 (this is using the fast 256 byte mode)

If the transfers have worked, the last block displayed should be 0, 1, 2, .....

Then test the two-byte mode transfers:
- 2 and 3

You should see the same result.

If this fails, try
- 0 and 3
- 2 and 1

This should let us narrow down whether it's the parasite -> host or host->parasite that is broken.

I think this will be interesting....

Dave

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Re: Matchbox sized 6502 / Z80 / 6809 Co Pro

Post by hoglet » Sun Feb 22, 2015 10:45 pm

I just stumbled across the website of someone who is close to completing an FPGA implementation of the Nat Semi 32xxx series processor.
http://www.cpu-ns32k.net/Overview.html

This bit is encouraging:
How things are going ? The development started in Summer 2009. Two years later the design was running my own software. For this task it does not need every feature of the architecture. The next step will be to implement all the remaining functionality. The final test software is NetBSD. If this complex software is running stable it is time to release the M32632. This will be done at http://www.opencores.org . My current guess is that the release will happen in summer 2014.
As of Jan 2015 it is booting NetBSD:
http://www.cpu-ns32k.net/News.html

Plenty of documentation as well:
http://www.cpu-ns32k.net/Documents.html

Dave

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Re: Matchbox sized 6502 / Z80 / 6809 Co Pro

Post by BigEd » Mon Feb 23, 2015 9:36 am

Great find!

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Re: Matchbox sized 6502 / Z80 / 6809 Co Pro

Post by lurkio » Mon Feb 23, 2015 10:03 am

hoglet wrote:Using DataCentre, CPM boots in 1.2 seconds. Who was it that was looking for a fast CPM machine ? :lol:
Me, for one! I do have a Flynn copro, but I'm nowhere near as knowledgeable about the technical details as everyone who's been commenting in this thread, so apologies if this is a dumb question, but what exactly is required to get a Z80 copro -- any Z80 copro -- to boot into CPM from a DataCentre rather than from an actual CPM system floppy disc? Is that what you've managed to do? If so, how? Is it possible to boot from DataCentre with an Acorn Z80 copro or will it only work with the specific cores and/or clients that you've been referring to in this thread?

Booting into CPM from a DataCentre is a sort of Copro Holy Grail for me! I've been trying and failing to do it since I started this thread on the Acorn Z80, here: http://www.stardot.org.uk/forums/viewto ... f=3&t=8525

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Re: Matchbox sized 6502 / Z80 / 6809 Co Pro

Post by RobC » Mon Feb 23, 2015 10:15 am

hoglet wrote: As a basic test, check the following combinations work:
- 0 and 1 (this is using one-type mode)
- 6 and 7 (this is using the fast 256 byte mode)

If the transfers have worked, the last block displayed should be 0, 1, 2, .....
Both work - get bytes 00 to 7F in the last block.
hoglet wrote: Then test the two-byte mode transfers:
- 2 and 3

You should see the same result.
Works - 00 to 7F in last block.
hoglet wrote: If this fails, try
- 0 and 3
- 2 and 1
Just for completeness, they both work but I guess that's obvious given that the tests above worked...

Happy to do more testing if it would help.

Cheers,

Rob

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Re: Matchbox sized 6502 / Z80 / 6809 Co Pro

Post by hoglet » Mon Feb 23, 2015 8:08 pm

Hi all,

I've just switched back to the Model B for testing, and there are definitely issues with the latest builds. None of the Co Pro designs seem particularly stable, even with the Co Pro directly in the Tube socket. Very different to the Master, and worse than I remember when I last tested on a Mode B.

I suspect these issues crept in about a week ago, when I made some changes to the Tube design. It's possible I have been a little overzealous in my Latch removal and in converting the host interface over to sampling on the falling edge of 2MhzE.

I'm very interested in feedback from anyone else who has tried any of these builds on a Model B:
- LX9CoProCombined_20150215_1904_dmb.zip
- LX9CoProCombined_20150217_2104_dmb.zip
- LX9CoProCombined_20150221_2106_dmb.zip
- LX9CoProCombined_20150222_1905_dmb.zip

I would not recommend anyone with a Model B to upgrade, unless you actively want to help with testing and have a programmer.

Dave

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Re: Matchbox sized 6502 / Z80 / 6809 Co Pro

Post by firthmj » Mon Feb 23, 2015 8:48 pm

Hi,

I did try my own build of the latest Git code on my B+ yesterday, and most of the designs seemed reasonably stable.

This was building from the "synctube" branch - is that the correct place to get the latest changes? - it seemed so from the logs.

I did have issues getting the X86 design to do anything, but I've never been in a position to try it properly before.

As the machine doesn't have ADFS in ROM, I'm not sure if it should be possible to get to some sort of prompt with the X86 Co-Pro to load it.

I did have a quick play with the fast Z80 and fast 6502 designs, and all seemed OK. In particular, I was able to load files into both over Econet, which wasn't possible before.

The machine in question is the same one I had major stability issues with my own Co-Pro on, and the most recent build seemed a bit more stable than previous ones on it. I did see one BASIC crash on the 6502 design, but I was seeing several before.

Regards

Michael
Had fun at the
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Meeting 13th May 2017

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Re: Matchbox sized 6502 / Z80 / 6809 Co Pro

Post by hoglet » Mon Feb 23, 2015 8:55 pm

Hi Michael,
firthmj wrote: This was building from the "synctube" branch - is that the correct place to get the latest changes? - it seemed so from the logs.
Yes, this is where the "syncronous" Tube design is, until it's a bit more proven.
firthmj wrote: I did have issues getting the X86 design to do anything, but I've never been in a position to try it properly before.

As the machine doesn't have ADFS in ROM, I'm not sure if it should be possible to get to some sort of prompt with the X86 Co-Pro to load it.
ADFS is certainly necessary to run, but I would have thought you should have been able to get to * prompt with a soft break.
firthmj wrote: I did have a quick play with the fast Z80 and fast 6502 designs, and all seemed OK. In particular, I was able to load files into both over Econet, which wasn't possible before.
That's good to know, thanks for checking this.
firthmj wrote: The machine in question is the same one I had major stability issues with my own Co-Pro on, and the most recent build seemed a bit more stable than previous ones on it. I did see one BASIC crash on the 6502 design, but I was seeing several before.
Is is a Master or a Model B?

If a Model B, is the board on an extension cable?

Dave

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Re: Matchbox sized 6502 / Z80 / 6809 Co Pro

Post by TheCorfiot » Mon Feb 23, 2015 8:59 pm

Dave

I have purposely been using a very heavily upgraded and loaded Model B for testing as follows.

Issue4
Econet
12 Rom board, Watford
2 extra SWR rams
32k ram board
Acorn 1770
Acorn Speech

I connect one of my co pros directly to the tube socket and ALL cores function with great stability right up to your last mcs release.
I can boot CPM, DRDos and GEM, planet animation runs fine as does Copro Elite.

My other copro however is a different story, it works with all cores with reduced stability but plug it into a master via cable and its perfect.

I'm still convinced the hardware needs a bit more work before you blame your code as there is definitely a lack of consistency between different co pros.

:)

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Re: Matchbox sized 6502 / Z80 / 6809 Co Pro

Post by hoglet » Mon Feb 23, 2015 9:49 pm

TheCorfiot wrote:My other copro however is a different story, it works with all cores with reduced stability but plug it into a master via cable and its perfect.

I'm still convinced the hardware needs a bit more work before you blame your code as there is definitely a lack of consistency between different co pros.
Although it's possible the variations you are seeing are down to variations the hardware, errors or omissions in the design downloaded to the Xilinx FPGA can also result in such seemingly inconsistent behaviour. This is especially true when the design uses multiple asynchronous clocks, as the Co Processor does.

A good example was me forgetting to properly synchronize the INT/NMI signals passing from one clock domain to the other in a couple of the designs. 99.999% of the time there was no problem, but maybe 1 time in 100,000 an NMI would be missed and the system would simply hang.

Now, working well in the Master but not in the Model B is more likely to be a issue with the timings around the Tube interface. In the latest design, everything is being sampled on the falling edge of the 2MHzE clock, which happens at the end of each 500ns cycle. In theory this is the optimum sampling point.

There are several things that might be going wrong:
1 - there is ringing on the clock, which is being seen as extra clock edges
2 - the data/address/control signals are changing too soon after the clock edge
3 - the data/address/control signals have noise on them

If its (1) then there not much that can be done in the Co Pro design, and the only recourse is to add a series resistor to the clock line, which will be a pain.

But with (2) and (3), shifting the sampling point slightly earlier in the clock cycle could make a big difference. This can be done in the FPGA.

Another possible source of problem is that currently there are no timing constraints being specified for the Tube signals, so the Xilinx router won't be paying any attention to how these are routed.

Dave

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Re: Matchbox sized 6502 / Z80 / 6809 Co Pro

Post by RobC » Mon Feb 23, 2015 9:53 pm

TheCorfiot wrote: I'm still convinced the hardware needs a bit more work before you blame your code as there is definitely a lack of consistency between different co pros.
That's my experience too - using the LX9CoProCombined_20150221_2106_dmb build, one of mine appears to be rock solid on all of the different co-pros I've tried. This is on a cable fitted to a Master 512 with Morley AA ROM board (so fairly heavily loaded).

The other one won't work - even off the same cable. It displays the start-up banner but doesn't get any further. I'll dig out a standard Beeb and will test it without the cable tomorrow.

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Re: Matchbox sized 6502 / Z80 / 6809 Co Pro

Post by dp11 » Mon Feb 23, 2015 10:11 pm

Hoglet, if the clock is ringing you can sample the 2MHz. clock with a say 64Mhz clock and filter the edges in the digital domain. To be really fancy you can look for the opening of the eye of the data bits as well :)

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Re: Matchbox sized 6502 / Z80 / 6809 Co Pro

Post by jgharston » Thu Feb 26, 2015 7:56 pm

I've continued the discussion specific to issues with the Z80 CoPro and the DataCentre in the Z80 CoPro & DataCentre thread.

Code: Select all

$ bbcbasic
PDP11 BBC BASIC IV Version 0.25
(C) Copyright J.G.Harston 1989,2005-2015
>_

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Re: Matchbox sized 6502 / Z80 / 6809 Co Pro

Post by BCCweirdo » Fri Feb 27, 2015 8:56 am

Hi everybody,

I'm new to the forum (see my intoduction in the relevant section :) ), but I've just obtained one of the first batch CoPro boards from another forum member.

First of all I'm planning to test the board 'as is' on one of my BBC Masters.

Just to be absolutely sure, is the board to be connected with the FPGA facing the Master, and only with the RAM chip and the 6 gold programming pad visible?

I was just thinking about using a male-to-male header on the board, and a 40-pin flat cable, with two female connectors, but I've read in the thread some warning about connecting the board to a Master in this way, and I don't want to smoke my CoPro.

What's pin 1 of the CoPro facing the board's connector ?

Pin 1 on the tube is the top-right one looking outside the connector (on the opposite side of the arrow printed on the bottom of the case near the connector), correct ?

After this, I'll look into buying a Xilinx USB programmer (the one I've seen linked in this thread on ebay), and some pogo pins, in order to reprogram the board with the latest implementation of the CoPros.

Some other questions about this (please be patient :wink: ):
1) do I have to power the board while reprogramming it ?
2) if yes, how should I power it ? Through the BBC Master by just connecting it to the Tube interface while reprogramming ?
3) any hint about making my own pogo pin plug ?
4) how do you kept the board in contact with the pogos during programming ? Just with a firm hand, or do you use something more sophisticated ?

Thanks in advance for any help.

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Re: Matchbox sized 6502 / Z80 / 6809 Co Pro

Post by hoglet » Fri Feb 27, 2015 9:07 am

I'll respond to the rest later, and other feed free to chime in.
BCCweirdo wrote:I was just thinking about using a male-to-male header on the board, and a 40-pin flat cable, with two female connectors, but I've read in the thread some warning about connecting the board to a Master in this way, and I don't want to smoke my CoPro.
PLEASE DO NOT DO THIS

As best it will not work.

At worst, it will damage your Co Pro, damage your Master PCB, and blow the fuse in the Master PSU which is a pig to change.

You need a cable with a female IDC connector on one end and a male on the other. Daniel made some of these up, and I'm sure can advise on the parts to order.

It's counter intuitive, but this cable is different to a female-female cable plus male-to-male header. This ends up swapping the top and bottom rows of pins.

Dave

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Re: Matchbox sized 6502 / Z80 / 6809 Co Pro

Post by danielj » Fri Feb 27, 2015 11:16 am

Hello,
I did make some up - all gone unfortunately. Dave Hitchins also now has some made up that he can sell IIRC?

Happy to advise on the bits, but it might be cheaper/easier to buy one from Dave due to economies of scale etc...?

Cheers,
d.

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Re: Matchbox sized 6502 / Z80 / 6809 Co Pro

Post by daveejhitchins » Fri Feb 27, 2015 1:07 pm

Yes, still have some . . . Just pm me :D

Dave H :D
Parts: UM6502CE, GAL22V10D, GAL16V8D, AS6C62256A, TC514400AZ, WD1772, R6522, TMS27C512, AT28C256
Products: ARA II, ARA III, ABR, ATI, AP6, MGC, AP5 . . .
For a price list, contact me at: Retro Hardware AT dave ej hitchins DOT plus DOT com

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