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Old 31 July 2019, 21:18   #1
kipper2k
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New - Amiga Romulator for A500 - A600

I have something new to show off today, something that i dont think has been done for the masses, i believe Commodore used something similar in the development stages of the Amiga.

We call it the "Romulator"...

It emulates the Amiga ROM and is for the 16bit computers. If demand is high enough we will finish up the 32 bit version. First here are its features.

- Accepts up to 1MB ROM images
- ROMs can be byteswapped or normal.
- Supports Rev3, 5, 6a and rev 8 A500s
- supports Amiga 600s
- Currently testing A1000 and A2000
- for those hackers, it is possible to support 2MB roms (You're on your own lol)
- USB and SD support.
- Roms are stored using onboard SD card.
- ROMs can be copied from PC to Amiga Romulator SD card






and ...



Description.

The Romulator sits in the Amiga ROM socket taking the place of the Amiga ROM. When you turn on the Amiga the Amiga is held in the Pause state and the Romulator will display its own bootup menu.

The menu will show all available ROMs you have on your SD card and you can select by keyboard arrows and mouse. Pressing no keys/mouse will cause the Amiga to continue its bootup after a selectable timeout period. Pressing an arrow key/mouse will stop the countdown and you can then move up and down and then press enter to select your ROM to load. The Amiga remembers the previosly used ROM and will load that.

The Romulator has 1 wire that needs to be connected to the Reset line of the Amiga. If using the A500MX keyboard there is a header onboard you just plug it in to. Using the A500 MX contoller on a regular KB also has a header (oops, i haven't told anyone about that yet... next week for that!). For the A600 the reset wire needs to be connected to a transistor leg. (easy solder) and i am also making a little easy install board similar to the Gotek ones i have just done.

The Menu is a throwback to the classic type intros and has music available. Many Many thanks to Mikestir for the coding on this, it is just bloomin AWESOME. (excuse my language). If Mike has time he will release updates that can allow the enduser to use their own music (No promises, he is very busy).

So what does this mean. For starters people can work on their own custom ROMs and try them on the Romulator to see if they are working. A 1MB rom image has lots of possibilities as regards custom libraries, onbord HRTMON (and if someone can do a onboard Action Replay ROM i will be forever in their debt (elbow elbow, nudge nudge). Hopefully this will now mean the end of the annoying burning of ROMs which is time consuming and not always successful.

So when is this available... I have a supply in front of me ready to be shipped to AOTL. It is finished, it was soooo hard to keep this quiet and i am glad that is is now free. I do not know what demand would be like for this and the price for parts is not too cheap so based on demand i will have more made according to demand. The board is a 4 layer board and uses an ARM processor.

For those who want one, supplies are limited and providing there is demand we will produce more.

Cost of a500/a600 versions are the same (Expected to be ~$79 USD), the only difference between the 2 of them is the board layout is reversed. I actually haven't tried in an A1000/A2000, i will add this check to the list of things to do,

If you want a 32bit version for your A1200 (with 2MB rom capability then flood this thread with requests and we can see about completing our design.

If i missed any info i am sure one of the AAA team members will chime in. Let me know if you have any questions.

Here is a small video of it used with my OSD Gotek and MX Keyboard

I will add more pictures/Videos later.

Last edited by kipper2k; 07 August 2019 at 13:18. Reason: added features update
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Old 31 July 2019, 22:53   #2
indigolemon
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So glad this is out in the open now, very hard to keep this quiet

Also, yes - get the 32bit version going please
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Old 31 July 2019, 23:10   #3
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Very nifty I must say!

It would have handy to have a diag rom image available when needed.

Oh, and yes to the 32 bit version for the 1200 and 3000!
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Old 31 July 2019, 23:26   #4
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I would love to see a working 32bit version for the A1200.
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Old 31 July 2019, 23:33   #5
kipper2k
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1 added bonus that makes me happy is what i am showing in the video. I can cycle through the games on the Gotek in the Romulator menu screen, see the listing easily and then once i have selected the game i want i can select the ROM i need to play the game

I still have about 4 more projects to release, we have been busy

Last edited by kipper2k; 31 July 2019 at 23:50.
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Old 01 August 2019, 08:50   #6
Mark sealey
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Awesome....I want one lol
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Old 01 August 2019, 09:25   #7
manic23
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Wow what a super idea, great product. Probably not interested in the 500/600 version but I would sell my own grandmother for an A1200 version!
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Old 01 August 2019, 11:02   #8
dalek
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Technically nice, though unfortunately shaped
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Old 01 August 2019, 14:14   #9
Mark sealey
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kipper2k View Post
1 added bonus that makes me happy is what i am showing in the video. I can cycle through the games on the Gotek in the Romulator menu screen, see the listing easily and then once i have selected the game i want i can select the ROM i need to play the game

I still have about 4 more projects to release, we have been busy
You sir are a true legend.
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Old 01 August 2019, 14:38   #10
Hewitson
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Originally Posted by dalek View Post
Technically nice, though unfortunately shaped
I thought the same thing actually!
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Old 01 August 2019, 15:24   #11
spudje
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Cool!!! I would be more interested in a 32 bit version though, as for my A500, my ACA500plus has comparable, albeit a bit more limited, functionality.
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Old 01 August 2019, 19:05   #12
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Cool stuff, but I'm still looking for something that can be in-circuit(?) updated. (And for my A4000D.)
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Old 01 August 2019, 22:02   #13
utri007
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32 bit would be interesting. Would it be still possible to load it to fast ram on boot?
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Old 01 August 2019, 22:31   #14
indigolemon
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Originally Posted by utri007 View Post
32 bit would be interesting. Would it be still possible to load it to fast ram on boot?
It will, once you have a ROM selected in the Romulator menu it loads it then the Amiga boots and reads it as if it was a bog standard ROM - so anything like that will work exactly the same.

I can see mine having the timeout at 0 seconds and my most used ROM selected a lot of the time so that it's effectively 'invisible'
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Old 01 August 2019, 23:23   #15
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Simply awesome!!

I'll definitely buy 2, one for my 1500/2000 and one for my 500plus.

And hopefully 2 more for my 1200s.

Simply Amiga!
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Old 01 August 2019, 23:40   #16
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Originally Posted by kipper2k View Post
The board is a 4 layer board and uses an ARM processor.

So basically this thing is more powerfull than the Amiga it attaches to
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Old 02 August 2019, 00:17   #17
kipper2k
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So basically this thing is more powerfull than the Amiga it attaches to
I am really chuffed at this, It wasn't just my work, it was Mikestir, Solidcore, Indigolemon, Freemilk and myself. We all had input. it has taken about 5 months of beta boards and fixes to get this done. The very first board was pretty ugly, trying to run jumpers from the Arm to its correct place was a nightmare lol. We started off doing 1 project and the next thing you know we are off on a tangent. We are really hoping that people can maximize the usage of this beastie and start creating their own ROM's to do magical things. The Amiga is not dead yet . We have 2 very big projects i know that people will want which is so far not done at all, but we will have to wait a couple of months to try to raise some funding for those. I learnt a lot about serial interface doing this project,my coding still sux, i think i forget more in a day that i learn lol

P.S. The shape, yah it is kinda familiar, i tried to make the footprint as small as possible and that was the result. BTW, on some Amiga 500s there is a capacitor that may be in the way, so no worries, we will provide a replacement capacitor for you so that you can wiggle the old one off and replace if need be. There is no need to take the board out of the case. We have decided to do the projects on the quiet now as we dont want people to get fixated on the timeline. The MX project took a few twists and turns but we needed to publicise it so we could gauge interest as the outlay is very high
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Old 02 August 2019, 02:08   #18
zodiac
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I would sell my own grandmother for an A1200 version!
How much are we talking here? I may be interested.
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Old 02 August 2019, 02:25   #19
sean_sk
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Is it my imagination or is there more awesome hardware coming out for the Amiga than ever before, even including the Commodore years? Great work kipper.

If this were to be used with a system that has a Vampire installed then I'm assuming the arrangement would still be the same where the Vampire's own Kickstart ROM would override anything in the ROM socket? This would render then Romulator inactive? Or will the user have a choice?

So when is the Klingonator coming out?

Last edited by sean_sk; 02 August 2019 at 02:32.
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Old 02 August 2019, 03:00   #20
kipper2k
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I have just tested my A2000 with the Romulator and the results are good. I tied into the reset line for the romulator and was pleasantly surprised i never even had to solder the reset line, it fits snugly underneath R201.

This is not meant to be used in competition/combination with the Vampire, I consider this an affordable option for the masses who want to just play games swapping ROMs on the fly for maximum compatibility.




and ...



and finally



So you can see the new Gotek and the Romulator will sit under the a2000 PSU with lots of clearance. I will create a faceplate for the Gotek so that the OLED can sit in the front of the A2000 with a small button plate, so we are set

Should be easy enough to tap into the sync and Green line for the OSD display. We can use the Big or small OLED. if someone beats me to make a 3D print model for one i will be very grateful., i am done for the night, too much beer .

just taking another look, the A600 version would probably fit better as it would not interfere with Agnus and you can do the 2MB addon with... (whats its name lol, can remember)

Last edited by kipper2k; 02 August 2019 at 03:24.
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