Wednesday, 22 March 2017

TZXMaple Progress.

It's been a while since I've published anything on my progress on converting things to the Maple Mini so I thought I'd keep you up to date.

I have converted TZXDuino to the Maple Mini and it is working but not properly. For some reason, even though it is using the same values as the Nano the frequency of the output is higher. So much so that fastloaders cannot be recognised and TAP and simple TZX cannot all register with the Spectrum. Oddly this would indicate that a microsecond for the Maple Mini is different to the microsecond for the Arduino Nano, yet the files play for a similar length of time.
It's all highly confusing and I've put the project on the back burner for a while so I can concentrate on working any errors out of the CAS/TZXDuino Shield PCB.
The good news being that when I was trying to figure out what was going wrong I noticed that TZX2WAV which we had been using as a benchmark to test our coding actually has a typo in it a decodes slower than the TZX standard which is why there has been a slight speed up to the TZXDuino code.


Anyhoo, that's all there is to report for now.

New Homebrew For MSX Converted to CAS for CASDuino.

Tales of Popolon is a new MSX homebrew game that is still under development but a ROM has been released so people can play. I've used CASLink3 to convert it to a CAS file and tested it on my Toshiba HX-10 with CASDuino and it works beautifully.

Here is a link to the games Github page.

Here is the CAS file to download.

Enjoy!!

Saturday, 18 March 2017

Dragon CAS files.

I've updated the CASDuino firmware so that it will load some games with Xroar but there has been no luck on an real Dragon.
Can you please give it a test and let me know the results? Thank you.

Download

Friday, 17 March 2017

ZX81 P and O filetype added to TZXDuino with a slight speed update.

ZX81 P and O filetypes have been added to TZXDuino. There is also a minor speed update that shaves a few seconds off previous load times.



We were hoping to have an update to CASDuino with working Dragon CAS files but unfortunately whilst we can get Chucky Egg to work we still can't get others to work. We are still working on it though.

Sunday, 5 March 2017

CASDuino ported to the Maple Mini.

I've managed to get the CASDuino firmware up and running on the Maple Leaf Mini. It's not perfect, there are issues with 3600 baudrate and it cannot store your baudrate selection as of yet as the Maple Mini does not have an EEPROM to store your selection but it is now working. Sadly whilst .CAS files on the MSX work, the ones for the Dragon have been broken

TZXDuino is proving particularly stubborn at the moment, it is at least playing sound but is very stuttery and that also causes ID errors after the main loader.

Friday, 3 March 2017

MapleTape - Moving towards combining firmwares.

One of my desires when I first thought about this project was to have something for everyone and for users to just be able to put their files onto an SD card and go but to remain cheap. The Arduino Nano was the perfect starting place for that but it quickly showed it's limitations, so now we're trying to port the firmwares over to the Maple Leaf Mini using the STM32Duino add on to the Arduino IDE.

It's still very much a work in progress and there has been a slight hardware change, the original SD card readers we used are not compatible with the Maple Mini, but we have managed to get the Maple Mini version of ArduiTape working and playing .WAV files. Unlike ArduiTape you are not restricted to the frequency of .WAVs you can play and you also do not require a low pass filter to play the .WAVs

What you need.
Maple Leaf Mini
1602 I2C LCD 

TF Micro SD Card Module Mini SD Card Module Memory Module
LM386 Amplifier Module
5 button button board (See earlier blogs for instructions).
3.5mm Audio Jack
2.5mm Audio Jack

Optional: Veroboard and 40 pin IC DIP socket.

I connected my Maple Mini to a piece of Veroboard as I could then add more pins to connect to for 5v and GND which gave me more flexibility.
Normally the Maple Mini is a 3.3v board so you can't power the 1602 from the VCC pins as normal but I have found that if you use a mini USB cable to power the Maple that 5v comes out of the VIN pin and so you're actually able to power the 1602 and the LM386 from that.

Connections
SD card
MOSI        -> Pin 4
MISO        -> Pin 5
SCK/CLK -> Pin 6
CS            -> Pin 8
3.3v          -> VCC
GND         -> GND

1602 I2C LCD
GND         -> GND
VCC         -> VIN

SDA         -> Pin 15
SCL          -> Pin 16

Button Board
Down       -> Pin 17
Up            -> Pin 18
Stop         -> Pin 19

Play          -> Pin 20
Menu        -> Pin 22
GND         -> GND


LM386
VCC         -> VIN
IN             -> Pin 27
GND         -> GND

GND         -> GND

2.5mm Audio
Active pins-> Pin 21
GND          -> GND



Using the Arduino IDE with STM32duino installed you can upload this sketch with it's improved TMRpcm library and play 8-bit wavs.

Next step

Now that I have MapleTape working (Doesn't stop when it gets to the end of the file yet but it basically works) I can try to port CASDuino and TZXDuino over using the same hardware.
Once that is done I can try combining CAS and TZXDuino first and then add MapleTape to it so that all three firmwares will be on one board which will bring me closer to my original idea.