A new riser?

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terriblefire
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A new riser?

Post by terriblefire » Wed Sep 11, 2019 11:03 pm

Ok so as most of you know i get asked for a lot of features... But there are some I think would be useful on the CD32. Here is what I think should be on a Gen 2 riser...

When thinking about new features keep in mind the riser has right space constraints... so you can't really put on 200 features without getting to the point of just doing a new motherboard.

Here's what I think is needed from the riser..

1. Video Output (VGA or SCART)
2. Wireless keyboard and mouse (or USB combo of some kind)...
3. Battery Backed up clock.
4. USB Joypad support!
5. Floppy drive emulator (maybe)!

I'm kinda uninterested in providing real perhiperal support. Parallel/Floppy/Real amiga keyboards... thats the past.. this thing needs to add mod-cons to a machine that never had them... so why add the rubbish old versions?

Discuss...
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8 Bit Dreams
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Re: A new riser?

Post by 8 Bit Dreams » Thu Sep 12, 2019 6:46 am

Have contacted user who calls himself Bprepared, he kindly offered me his riser for testing purposes, in actual design is no video output nor keyboard included, however he has all pins of signal and bus headers, so adding an additional board for floppy drive and rtc isn't a problem.
Ah! And his riser is open source!
https://github.com/Bprepared/FB-32-CD32-Expansions
So adding VGA or SCART isn't a big deal.

As about Joypad/usb keyboard - haven't seen something that is open source atm except KTRL32..

Also one german user started to do a riser (his version has vga output) haven't heard any update on this though...

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Re: A new riser?

Post by sugar » Thu Sep 12, 2019 7:49 am

My wishlist for a riser:

I would love a paraller port as a CD32 is a gaming machine and to get that four player action you need that (and an adapter).

I wouldn't mind a serial port or a clockport either tbh as you can get an soundcard for that. (I would like to use the CD32 for ScummVM so there's actual benefit there).

Hese's AA3000+ featured a built-in scandoubler (I think it was based on someone elses drawings though) so if the footprint isn't too big it's something I would definately look in to if you can get all the signals needed for that. For connectors SCART is huge, Amiga style RGB is quite big but a small VGA-style D-Sub15 would be better.

If the real estate is limited there's also an argument that video output and espacially the ps/2 keyboard adapter is not needed since you might not have use for RGB and on the other hand you can get that straight from the console in the french version or you might be a lucky owner of an indivision and you can get cheap ps/2 adapters for the aux port.

An RTC would be very welcome, a system without one is not a good one for productivity.

I would like a place in the riser for an off-switch that could be hooked in to extension disabling jumpers.

A floppy drive port would be nice.

A HID mouse/keyboard combo you could use wirelessly would be great. I currently have a wireless mouse in the CD32 and it covers most my needs but less cables the better.

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Re: A new riser?

Post by terriblefire » Thu Sep 12, 2019 8:04 am

That’s a lot of features. My thinking was that 90% of what you ask for could be accomplished with WiFi and 2 USB ports. You can emulate parallel via WiFi then. You can basically only have one DType plug on the back of the board.

A switch to disable expansions isn’t practical as the only way to do this reliably is to disable the power and that would actually kill the Xilinx CPLDs as they don’t like 5V on their IO when they’re not powered up. Even then there are like 20 independently wired power lines to the riser ... don’t think it can work.
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Re: A new riser?

Post by go0se » Thu Sep 12, 2019 8:04 am

Features 1,2 and 4 would make the riser really worthwhile, 3 and 5 would be nice to have if space permitted.
Could these features all be implemented in the limited form factor available without it becoming an unwieldy beast?

Is the idea to provide the connectors discussed with the required logic implemented on a single CPLD? I have an original FWSI module here and the 90s circuitry required to implement the floppy controller and real time clock is fairly substantial. I assume the space saving once that was "modernised" would be considerable?
IMG_20190912_074744_800.jpg
IMG_20190912_074744_800.jpg (106.08 KiB) Viewed 453 times
I would love to see a new CD32 riser with the features listed. It would be a perfect compliment and extension to the TF expansions already in the wild and any future releases. It would also be a more fitting use for those expensive 5650092-1 connectors :)

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Re: A new riser?

Post by terriblefire » Thu Sep 12, 2019 11:26 am

My plan was to use an ARM cpu and a small CPLD for address decoding. Absolutely no floppy interface. Parallel port accesses get redirected on a telnet port via WiFi. Serial is same deal but a different port.

Two USB ports. Supporting a game device, keyboard or mouse.

The RTC would be the smallest I can get or part of the ARM.

The Gotek would be in the ARM like a MiST.

Ideally someone else would have done this as it’s not my bag.
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Re: A new riser?

Post by go0se » Thu Sep 12, 2019 12:07 pm

terriblefire wrote:
Thu Sep 12, 2019 11:26 am
The Gotek would be in the ARM like a MiST.
Ah, I misunderstood, - full on-board floppy emulation without the need for an external interface to a floppy/Gotek, that's a much more impressive feature!

I previously had a look at implementing the RTC circuit on an existing riser design. It's probably within my capabilities with the help of your existing published Verilog sources, however, as you pointed out at the time, the addition of a RTC in isolation isn't that useful. Unfortunately the addition of more complex features such as USB would be well beyond my current level.

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Re: A new riser?

Post by alenppc » Thu Sep 12, 2019 1:04 pm

IMHO, the one thing we need to keep from Kipper's riser is the 23-pin RGB port. Why? Because every single Amiga Scart cable is designed for it + it lets you use external scandoublers and commodore CRT monitors. With the rest go nuts... :D The only other feature I'd be interested in besides the keyboard would be an RTC.

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Re: A new riser?

Post by go0se » Thu Sep 12, 2019 1:54 pm

+1 for the 23 pin connector here as well. Although both the male and female connectors are considered to be rare it does seem that someone out there is still (re)manufacturing them as there are a couple of sellers in the UK that seem to have them constantly in stock. Individually in the case of the males or as part of a pre-made SCART cable for the females.

Edit: I'm talking about the proper 23pin connectors, not those nasty cut down 25s.

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Re: A new riser?

Post by alenppc » Thu Sep 12, 2019 2:04 pm

go0se wrote:
Thu Sep 12, 2019 1:54 pm
+1 for the 23 pin connector here as well. Although both the male and female connectors are considered to be rare it does seem that someone out there is still (re)manufacturing them as there are a couple of sellers in the UK that seem to have them constantly in stock. Individually in the case of the males or as part of a pre-made SCART cable for the females.

Edit: I'm talking about the proper 23pin connectors, not those nasty cut down 25s.
I have a good stock of the male ones, almost 300 pieces.

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