Any Interest in Homebrew MSX Hardware Club ?

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Por raymond

Hero (612)

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27-01-2015, 18:35

Well, what kind of website software should do the trick?

Por Robby

Master (211)

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27-01-2015, 20:24

That's a classic fault a lot of people make. You shouldn't decide directlty in terms of a software solution. First, decide what your requirements should be. So, which functionality should be supported? In other words, what do we want to achieve with the site (several items are already mentioned, i think). I should say collect them, and after that consider what kind of software fits best.

Por Grauw

Ascended (10623)

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27-01-2015, 21:35

Or, you guys could start the club right now in a simple forum (like msx.org or Facebook or anywhere else) and add a support site along the way, based on the needs that arise from the discussions and community.

…rather than coming up with requirements for features and functionality which you don’t know for sure yet you’re going to need. If the prerequisite for starting the club is to first make a big community website with 1 million super advanced handy features, it will never get done and your hardware club idea will die a slow death.

Start now! Nothing’s holding you back! I’ll definitely be reading along Smile.

Por Robby

Master (211)

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27-01-2015, 22:06

Quote:

If the prerequisite for starting the club is to first make a big community website with 1 million super advanced handy features, it will never get done and your hardware club idea will die a slow death.

I don't think this is a representative scenario in this case. Of course you don't want to do a waterfall-like method or something similar which will take ages to get something done, but there are also quicker ways to achieve something combined with thinking about which elements should be at least in it. Indeed you can expand things based on user needs that pop up on a later time Smile
The only thing i would say about it is (unfortunately in dutch) "bezint eer ge begint". It would be too bad you will start blindly with a platform/application which doensn't support the functionality you needed most Tongue

Por elmer

Supporter (4)

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02-03-2015, 19:15

As a game developer, I'd love to see a Z8S810 with matched up with a V9990.

I think that that would be one heck of a capable system ... and could be done with very few chips.

But since it wouldn't be directly compatible with old MSX software/games/etc, I suspect that nobody else would be interested.

Por xperroni

Expert (83)

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03-03-2015, 10:36

elmer wrote:

As a game developer, I'd love to see a Z8S810 with matched up with a V9990.

I'm curious, do you have a datasheet or other reference on that processor? I Googled for "Z8S810" but didn't find anything.

Por elmer

Supporter (4)

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03-03-2015, 17:43

So sorry, I'm an idiot with fat fingers. Just the regular old Z8S180 ... 33MHz Z80 with multiply instruction, 1MB memory mapper, embedded UARTS and available in a small packages. It includes SPI mode for direct interfacing to an SD card.

To keep it in sync with a V9990, you'd probably just clock it at 21.47MHz ... so not really that much different in speed to an M5X except that you could put the whole thing together in a smaller board space, and end up with the V9990 which would be much more fun to write games for than a V9958.

Potentially a nice little CP/M or MSX-DOS machine.

Por Dirty Harry

Resident (45)

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05-03-2015, 11:01

The Z8S18033 is a powerful Z80 chip .. I believe it can be over-clocked maybe even as high as 64MHz ?? I recently saw some Z84C0010s over-clocked to 32MHz with no ill effects.. And Z84C0020VECs can go over 40MHz !!

So making a super fast MSX system with Z180s could be possible.. but who would design it ?

Por syn

Prophet (2098)

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05-03-2015, 12:43

I've been told this cant work because the z180 does not have 8bit access to IX/IY

Por kanima

Master (194)

imagem de kanima

05-03-2015, 14:04

syn wrote:

I've been told this cant work because the z180 does not have 8bit access to IX/IY

I'm wondering though: aren't all those 8-bit IX/IY accesses (i.e. IXL,IXH,IYL,IYH) officially undocumented? That is, not in the official Zilog Z80 handbook (or at least not in the versions of the 1980s and 1990s?). If so, then none of the standard ROMs (main,sub,ext,bdos etc) should be using these, right? Also, I'm guessing a very large portion of MSX software ever released also don't use them. This means an MSX with a Z180 inside should be able to run quite a bit of MSX software, just not everything. There might also be problems with third party expansions (like SD interfaces, IDE etc) since many of these came out at a time when more developers were aware of these "undocumented" instructions.

So, if the z180 does indeed not support 8bit access to IX/IY then using that in an MSX machine would surely stop you from using certain software and maybe even some hardware, but I can imagine you would still be able to run quite a large portion of MSX software ever released?

Maybe somebody in the openMSX team can do some tests, just for fun. That is, stop emulation or give out a warning if any of the 8bit IX/IY instructions are used and then start some machines and run some software to maybe get an idea about how much software a z180 would be able to run correctly.

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