1. Not old. Vintage. :)

What's new Pussycat too?

Discussion in 'SIG: General Chat' started by M.D.Baker, May 4, 2020.

  1. by Andy Barr
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    #Sounds great, Rich - you're proving once more that we never stop learning.
    Have great fun when it all comes through and please update us.
    Hope you're keeping well, mate - Al was asking after you too on Friday.
    Keep smiling through, buddy and thanks once more for all your help recently with the Orics.
    Top thorough repair man par excellence.
     
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  2. by M.D.Baker
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    I need to pick up a book or two myself for the 6809(actually upgraded to the compatible 6309 found in the Coco 3).
    But even though the Dragon and Coco are nearly compatible, hell, I've got the SuperSprite FM+ graphic & audio upgrade card and the Oojamaflip (multi-card adapter) both originally designed for the Dragon that work with my Coco 2! Though with the Oojamaflip did require my own modifications since it was physically designed originally to be an internal upgrade for the Dragon. But I do think I'll be better off with 6809 books written specifically with the TRS-80 Coco line in mind.

    Though I continue to be busy with my business, I have found time on occasion to continue my projects here and there so I have finished building the Oojamaflip and modifying a 3D printed case for Coco MPI boards to work with the SS FM+ board (it's not quite finished as I have to add and extension to the back enclosing the SCART connector).

    I still have to design my own case from scratch for the Oojamflip, which I've brought out with a ribbon cable and flipped the flipped connector for the Dragon back again for use outside with the Coco 2. I may be the only Coco owner who will have his own custom "Multi-Pak" where the cards will protrude horizontally instead of vertically like the original Multi-Pak designs as well as the new home-brew ones they sold more recently.

    I've also custom painted the cassette recorder I have for the Coco 2 (and the card case I spoke of above) with the best color match I could fine to the Coco 2's and the original mouse and deluxe joystick colors. IIRC, the color is Khaki, though I don't have the paint can near to verify.

    I still have no CRT VGA monitor for my Coco 2.

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  3. by Andy Barr
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    Two words: bloody brilliant.
    The finish, colour scheme and overall effect oozes early 80s micro classic design.
    You just wanna play with it all and see what it's capable of.
    Great add-ons too there, Matt.
    I look forward to some demos of what the machine can do when it's really ramped up and the software's pushing the micro to its new limits etc.
    Hope as well you get sorted with a CRT / VGA monitor for the Coco soon.

    Oh, and keep on drinking Canada... dry - you know it makes sense as those Cannucks need the income!
     
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  4. by Vyper68
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    @M.D.Baker I think the 6809 book by Levanthal will apply to any 6809/63c09 CPU based computer whereas "Inside the Dragon" is specific to the Dragon 32/64/Tano or 200E. I also have an Oojimaflip board but don't actually use it just now. I also bought a 200E Daughterboard for my D32 which allows you to have proper lowercase text gives you about 10 different character sets to choose from. I have also sussed out how to have a user defined character set in RAM and not use the set hard coded in the VDG. I finally got a 3d printed case for my disk interface so it's not a bare PCB sticking out the cartridge port. I also bought a replacement power board for my Dragon from John Howarth so it uses a standard 12V 3A PSU now and there is enough power in the board to power a SuperSprite board without the external PSU where the standard power board is borderline. It has some headers for 5v,12v,Gnd so I run my Gotek drive off one of these so I only have one PSU for the whole system.

    Sadly John is not producing anything right now due to ill health so there is no more products being produced right now. So my plan for getting a SuperSprite board or a DragonPlus board are on hold indefinitely. Still, I am tracking my CoCoSDC and so far it's gone from Chicago to Copenhagen. So hopefully not long now.
     
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  5. by M.D.Baker
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    That's a shame that John is in ill health, I wish him well. I haven't had the opportunity to try out the Super Sprite board yet, or the Coco 2 really at all yet. I've just been working on hardware and awaiting an opportunity to get a good monitor for it. I still have no SD card device, I really wanted to get the MOOH, but contact with the person who makes it has been very problematic for me, then I finally made contact and he said he would make more MOOH boards in January and I have had no more responses from several email attempts again since February. It had so much more to offer than just the SD drive like the CocoSDC, but I guess I'll just have to settle for the CocoSDC at this point and order one soon.

    In the meantime I have a cassette drive and could put programs on tape and load them, but as I said, I haven't gotten around to using it yet. I'm still in the middle of several projects I started over the winter but failed to finish due to my mother's health and obligations with her, and now I'm back at work full time and dealing with all the usual equipment issues there too, so I'm maybe managing to find one evening a week to work on stuff and some projects are awaiting parts too, etc.
     
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  6. by Vyper68
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    @M.D.Baker I really want to get a NTSC CoCo2 at some point. It just seems like eBay is very expensive. What I really need is a contact in the US to find me one.
    Nudge Nudge Wink Wink Say No More?
     
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  7. by M.D.Baker
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    I may be able to help you with that, I'm happy to do so, though I've no better source for Coco's than eBay as well. That's where I bought mine, I just happen to get one in great condition on the cheap for parts or repair, prepared for the possibility of extensive trouble-shooting and repairs to a machine I had no experience with, yet luckily it turned out to be a rare revision model that is almost completely socketed, and repair was the mere matter of re-seating the IC's.

    I can of course keep an eye out for you in other venues I may visit like mom&pop electronic shops, swap meet/flea markets and local online classified for sales lists. And occasionally I do come across good deals for vintage computers and consoles, but I had no luck locating a Coco "in the wild." I just browsed amongst 3-4 different computer brands on eBay for a couple of years, waiting for what I felt was a good enough deal to pull the trigger.

    My first venture out of Atari in 8-bit land since I sold off my 7800 and C64 nearly 20 years ago was solely left up to Chaos Theory and the Cosmos as to what was available to me when the stars were aligned and I had money at the same time as I found a great deal on a classic machine. I was leaning heavily toward the C64 since I owned one a short time back in the day, but the machine that became available for the right price at the right time was my TRS-80 Coco 2.

    If it's just a matter of you finding what you want on eBay and then if it would end up being much cheaper for me to buy it on your behalf, and make sure it's gets to you directly or indirectly through me, I'm also happy to do that as well.

    But if wanting a Coco is merely a matter of having an NTSC version of the Dragon, are you sure you want a Coco and not an NTSC Tano Dragon? Because I could watch for one of them for you too, though they are more rare than Coco's.

    http://www.oldcomputers.net/tano-dragon.html
     
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  8. by Vyper68
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    @M.D.Baker I really want a CoCo2 to be honest as a lot of the hardware upgrades I am interested are designed for the CoCo. The NTSC is the preferable choice as it has the artifacting for the additional colours whereas the the PAL versions don't have that ability.
    If you come across one in your travels it would be great if you could help me out.
     
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  9. by M.D.Baker
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    I tell you, the "coincidences" and good fortune I keep having from the start with my Coco 2, as I have said from the beginning, seems like destiny or serendipity or Devine intervention or something. First, getting a mint condition Coco 2 for dirt cheap that was suppose to be one needing work, then I accidentally stumble across the SuperSprite FM+ board on Youtube and seem to have been one of the last to buy one before the shop selling them closed, and now just as I'd given up all hope of getting a MOOH board and settling for an SD card reader without all the other upgrades, the CocoSDC and order it today, I first checked my email one last time as hope springs eternal for me, and I was again touched by fate or destiny and I finally received a reply from Tormod saying my MOOH board would soon be ready and he would let me know soon when It's ready to be shipped and I can pay him!

    Even though my recently aquired SSFM+ board has expanded memory and NitroOS9 compatibility like the MOOH, it's still one quarter the memory of the MOOH and what's not included with the SSFM+ or CocoSDC on the MOOH is a SPI/MPI controller to add more floppy drives, etc. as slaves without additional controller paks and additional MPI slots that I don't have with the OOjamaflip board, and flashrom space for more roms. So there is still a huge advantage for me to have this with the SSFM+ instead of just the CocoSDC. Plus, the MOOH will fit 3D printed case designs for the CocoSDC!

    http://tormod.me/mooh.html

    https://thezippsterzone.com/2018/05/08/coco-sdc/

    https://www.dragonplus-electronics.co.uk/super-sprite-fm-plus/
     
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  10. by Andy Barr
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    RESULT!!! Get in there, Matt.

    Extremely good things come to those who wait!
     
  11. by Vyper68
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    Yeah Matt, I got an email from Tormod as well. So my NX32 RAM expansion and uDW server should be ready soon too!
     
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  12. by M.D.Baker
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    I assume you would be interested in one working or not? I know I generally steer toward the cheaper non-working for parts or repair myself since I'm confident I can fix them and save some money.
     
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  13. by Vyper68
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    I have just bought a PAL CoCo2 off feeBay with two Tandy Joysticks, Manuals and around Six cartridges. All untested for £120. I should be able to fix it if it’s poorly so I’m okay with that price. I’ll need to composite mod it but it seems more straightforward compared to an NTSC model. Just and simple Resistor/Transistor mod. Looking at the pictures it’s one of the later models with the T1 VDG but I won’t know for sure.
    So I’ll let you all know when it turns up!
     
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  14. by Paul "Mclaneinc" Irvine
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    Congrats on the new gear Matt and Richie, always nice to see people enjoying their hobby.
     
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  15. by Andy Barr
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    Congrats, Richie.

    All the best with heaps of Coco loco fun and I'm sure you and Matt will soon be demonstrating what a neat little machine these beasts can be once you guys have supercharged em!

    Have stacks of fun and catch you guys after me op.

    Toodle pip and take good care.
     
  16. by nysavant
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    I always remember seeing the CoCo in early issues of Big K magazine, liked the look of it back then too :)

    Nothing new on the Atari front for me this week. I did pick up Pixel Addict from WH Smith though, and it had a feature on the 800XL so that was nice :) Pretty cool being able to go into a newsagent and buying that and Amiga Addict. It's like the 80's all over again lol.

    Speaking of the Amiga, I've been spending the odd hour playing on the A500 Mini. It's a nice little emulator box that still gives you the proper Amiga 'feels'. Very handy that two of my favourite games are pre-installed on it, Arcade Pool and Kick Off 2. Since buying it, my original Amiga 500 hasn't been switched on at all.

    This evening has been spent custom firmware modding a Nintendo 2DS so I can install e-shop games on it from an SD card. Lets me play my favourites like Ridge Racer, Power Drift and Out Run on the go.

    And now in the UK we have a four day (three for some lucky people) work week as Friday is a Public Holiday for the Queens Jubilee. Means a little more gaming time and some geeky stuff next weekend ;)
     
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  17. by Andy Barr
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    Enjoy, Al.

    Retro away, buddy, big time and report back here so I have some reading and replying to do when I get out, hopefully Wed night, mate.

    Take care, one and all, guys and like Al points out, enjoy to the max the extended UK Bank Holiday this week and let's hope for some decent weather plus decent opportunities to enjoy our hobby and update the rest of the Atari Owner crew.

    Many thanks for the support, Al.
     
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  18. by nysavant
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    Here here Andy. I'm visiting Blackpool to go to the Spitfire Museum and TramTown depots. Of course, I'll also be keeping an eye out for retro bargains.

    You take it easy after the op' Andy. Don't want you doing anything too exciting like trying to load up a game on ye olde Oric. I'll give you a buzz at some point once you are settled back home.

    p.s. Please though, no photo's of you in your theatre gown. That's one bit of retro no-one wants to see!!
     
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  19. by Andy Barr
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    PMSL!!!

    I second and third that last proposal, pal.

    Have a superb time out and about visiting Blackpool, Al.

    I'll look forward to a run through your itinerary when you return from your marvellous missions, mate.
     
  20. by Paul "Mclaneinc" Irvine
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    Hmmmm....mental note, probably not safe around children.... :)

    Have fun Al, watch out for those Northerners, would rob ya blind :)
     
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  21. by M.D.Baker
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    Speaking of the Oric, I thought you guys might appreciate my colour choice for my Bally Arcade computer keyboard. Here some more pics now that I have it assembled and ready to go_Of course the LED's can be many different colors and even cycle through them, but I can't show that it photos. When all 3 computers (at the XL Command Center) are fully finished and working I'll video it all with them all lit up and running.

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    .
     
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  22. by Andy Barr
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    Absolutely euphORIC over that splendid sexy red and black Bally keyboard colour scheme, Matt. What a Bobby Dazzler you've got on your retro hands now, my old muckah. ENJOY!!
     
  23. by M.D.Baker
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    So, my computers and consoles aren't the only things I've been upgrading lately. I've also been upgrading my 3D printer.
    I now have stabilizer bars to reduce vibration for better prints and an enclosure to keep a consistent temperature for better prints, but it will also allow me to use ABS plastics as well as the PLA.

    Another upgrade I have yet to install is an auto bed leveling sensor to make proper leveling quick and easy. And the last item that hasn't arrived yet is a laser engraving head so I'll be able to do engraving soon as well. That is still to arrive next week, I'll post a pic of it when it arrives.

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  24. by M.D.Baker
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    A few other items arrived today. I finally got around to getting some dust covers for most of my vintage computers and consoles.

    I'm still missing a couple, but only because the person I ordered these from don't make them for the other systems and peripherals I have.I need a cover for my 7800, original Xbox and 360, Coco 2. And any I can find for my computer peripherals. These were all purchased on eBay from the same seller, so I still have to search for the others I need on other sites and dealers, or get around to buying a roll of pleather material myself and making my own.

    I'll post a pic of my 800CX with it's cover later, as it's in the office trailer and I just decided to dust off and put the dust covers on the ones in my room, and take these pics and post, just before going to bed.

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    Last edited: Jun 4, 2022
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  25. by Andy Barr
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    Very very smart.
    Nice cover operation there, Matt.
    They certainly do the biz and have that quality uniform look.
    The price of these dust covers these days can be eye-watering (some dudes wanting £30+ per item).
    Hope you got them at a reasonable price, matey.
     

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