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Old 23 August 2014, 16:15   #1
Total Eclipse
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Should I buy a MIST?

I've been looking into ways to get a decent set of emulators running on my main TV. AT the moment my desktop PC is over 10 years old, and although it can run plenty of emulators at full speed, the hardware is bulky and noisy. I've a more up to date laptop, however that's a hassle to cable up for the odd gaming session.

So, my main consideration at the moment is MIST. it's small, quiet, fast enough, allows use of my old joysticks, and is around my budget.

My question is, are there any better way to get decent emulation on my TV for around the same cost as MIST (~£170)?

I'll post the same question on Atari Forum to see what the folks think.
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Old 24 August 2014, 10:37   #2
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What hardware do you have now?

I would consider the fpgaArcade:

http://www.fpgaarcade.com/punbb/viewtopic.php?id=107
http://eab.abime.net/showthread.php?t=70689

It's about the same price but has a 68020+cache TG68 and Amiga AGA emulation. It should also get a 68060 expansion board with more memory and ethernet.

Last edited by matthey; 24 August 2014 at 10:43.
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Old 25 August 2014, 19:41   #3
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Hardware I have at the moment, I assume you mean real Amiga hardware? I've an A1200 with a 2GB hdd, 50Mhz '030 and 16mb of fast RAM. I know that MIST won't give me a 1:1 equivalent to the hardware I have now, but as long as it runs all the non AGA games and supports whdload then I'd be happy. The closest I came to finding a price for the FPGA Arcade was in the link from their forum, which stated it would be "around" €199, plus another 25% Swedish VAT. Plus I'd need a case. It looks like a better option in many ways, but would be way over my budget
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Old 26 August 2014, 04:48   #4
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Quote:
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Hardware I have at the moment, I assume you mean real Amiga hardware? I've an A1200 with a 2GB hdd, 50Mhz '030 and 16mb of fast RAM.
That's a really good general purpose Amiga setup and it's semi-portable. If the problem is hooking it up to a more modern TV/monitor then there is the Indivision AGA. There may eventually be an fpga accelerator with DVI/HDMI output that would be much faster and reasonably priced but it would probably be a year or two for the 1200.

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I know that MIST won't give me a 1:1 equivalent to the hardware I have now, but as long as it runs all the non AGA games and supports whdload then I'd be happy.
Some non-AGA games need a 68020+. I'm not sure how good the MIST 68020 emulation is but the fpgaArcade version of the TG68 works very well with caches enabled. Other fpga hardware has had trouble enabling the caches on the 68020 TG68 and doesn't have all the bug fixes yet. The fpgaArcade version of the 68020 TG68 with caches should be released when the fpgaArcade is officially released so Mist may get it as well as potentially getting the fpgaArcade AGA emulation as well. At that point, the fpgaArcade would only have better quality, better support and 2x the memory. Mist is available now while obtaining an fpgaArcade may require some begging.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Total Eclipse View Post
The closest I came to finding a price for the FPGA Arcade was in the link from their forum, which stated it would be "around" €199, plus another 25% Swedish VAT. Plus I'd need a case. It looks like a better option in many ways, but would be way over my budget
That VAT is outrageous! How do they get away with a 25% "sales" tax without mass rioting? An extra €30 for the fpgaArcade would be worthwhile for AGA, RTG and a better CPU core but an extra €80 is almost 50% more than the Mist .
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Old 26 August 2014, 09:27   #5
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Please have a look here if you wonder why your posts are gone: http://eab.abime.net/faq.php?faq=eab...faq_eab_banned
Thank you.
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Old 26 August 2014, 13:11   #6
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Please have a look here if you wonder why your posts are gone: http://eab.abime.net/faq.php?faq=eab...faq_eab_banned
Thank you.
Eh?
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Old 26 August 2014, 13:14   #7
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Nothing to do with your thread Just had to remove two off-topic posts from it and leave a reason why I did it (aka nothing to see here, move on )
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Old 26 August 2014, 13:42   #8
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That's a really good general purpose Amiga setup and it's semi-portable.
I think part of my desire to try a FPGA is MIST (or FPGA Arcade, or whatever) truly is portable, can hold the equivalent of all the floppies I've ever owned and more importantly for day to day use, discrete enough to hide out of the way, especially when used with a wireless keyboard and mouse. My Amiga, plus the PSU, plus floppies for anything not installed onto my HDD is still portable, but not small enough to leave out (or not according to my wife, anyway ).

I've also got an Atari ST in the loft, which again has the same "portability" issue, especially considering that my HDD for that is in an external case. A FPGA solution means that I can switch between machines in seconds.

I did wonder whether a micro PC could offer the same functionality - there's certainly no issue with emulation being accurate enough, but it's a case of whether there's anything small and powerful enough that's not going to cost much more than £150.
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Old 26 August 2014, 17:30   #9
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I think MIST is a good choice, especially if you're looking for more than just Amiga emulation, as MIST currently emulates 10 systems with more coming. It also has very good Atari ST emulation, if you're interested in that

Oh and minimig MIST core of course also has 68020 emulation and caches. AFAIK there are no problems reported with it. It also has most of the bugfixes with more coming (I'm porting the latest minimig-de1 core to the MIST board).

Matthey, does the FPGA arcade have patches for TG68 that are not published? I don't want to nag, but that is a no-no (GPL!).
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Old 26 August 2014, 21:24   #10
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Most of the FPGA Arcade Amiga core was completely re-written from scratch, and no longer has much (if any) of the mini-mig related stuff. The TG68 core is also being phased out as time progresses.

Keep in mind that most of the cores being used on MIST come from MikeJ, who developed the FPGA Arcade. Take a look at the MIST core credits.

The last couple of bugs in the Amiga core are being tracked down right now. One bug is likely responsible for the AGA glitch, as well as other graphics glitches that we have seen. FPGA Arcade's ARM core handles I/O and can support flux level (.scp) image files for various platforms (Amiga, Atari ST, C64, TRS-80, PC, etc.) so we have the ability to virtually connect a real floppy disk with these images, since these images are the exact data that comes off of the disk drive head. The end result is the ability to image and play every game ever made for the Amiga, Atari ST, etc. once the core is released. I know Mike's entire goal for the Replay board was ST/TT/Mega emulation so I am sure that will be next on the list once the Amiga core is out.

Developers are porting their FPGA projects to replay because it supplies really nice hardware layers that you can hook into so that you don't have to handle the video clocks, keyboard, mouse, I/O, etc. It simplifies the core requirements greatly. I expect to see a LOT of cores ported in the future. I have 15 or so that I have been testing.
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Old 27 August 2014, 04:11   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Total Eclipse View Post
I think part of my desire to try a FPGA is MIST (or FPGA Arcade, or whatever) truly is portable, can hold the equivalent of all the floppies I've ever owned and more importantly for day to day use, discrete enough to hide out of the way, especially when used with a wireless keyboard and mouse. My Amiga, plus the PSU, plus floppies for anything not installed onto my HDD is still portable, but not small enough to leave out (or not according to my wife, anyway ).
"Ew, those cables are ugly!" I can't help much as a women is involved making the decision illogical .

Quote:
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Oh and minimig MIST core of course also has 68020 emulation and caches. AFAIK there are no problems reported with it. It also has most of the bugfixes with more coming (I'm porting the latest minimig-de1 core to the MIST board).
Do you have a link to the latest VHDL source? Majsta would love to have a TG68 68020 with caches and "no problems" for his accelerator.

Quote:
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Matthey, does the FPGA arcade have patches for TG68 that are not published? I don't want to nag, but that is a no-no (GPL!).
MikeJ has said that he will release whatever GPL code he needs to when the fpgaArcade is "officially" sold (I can only assume that all sells so far have been for development and testing purposes). I don't know what MikeJ is using inside the fpga. I'm not specifically developing for the fpgaArcade. I actually have more inside connections with the Apollo Team (Phoenix core and Amiga classic accelerators) and Majsta (the fpgaArcade GPL code may be useful to these projects also). JimDrew is developing for and will be distributing the fpgaArcade for North America so he should know more.
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Old 09 September 2014, 10:12   #12
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Matthey, does the FPGA arcade have patches for TG68 that are not published? I don't want to nag, but that is a no-no (GPL!).
Not currently. I am only using the T68K kernel, the wrapper including caching etc is my own work. I have (I think) isolated a problem in the T68K. Once this is verified I'll push the fix back immediately.

I am working to get my own public repos up, but I haven't had time yet.

Does anybody know where the "master" copy of T68K lives?
/MikeJ
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Old 09 September 2014, 16:00   #13
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That is a good question. I don't think anyone knows.

Tobias Gubener's hard drive?

Because no-one knows, bug-fixes and improvements could be being made locally to many projects and not being passed back to a central point.

The original lives on OpenCores

http://opencores.org/project,tg68

But it isn't the latest (which has been separated into several files including TG68dotC_kernal.vhd)

The last version I've seen was dated "07/08.Feb.2013"

https://code.google.com/p/mist-board...mig/rtl/tg68k/
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Old 09 September 2014, 19:50   #14
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I believe the last (public) release of TG68K.c core is in this topic:
http://minimig.net/viewtopic.php?f=9&t=558

There was one small issue with fastRAM which prevented some games from working, the fix in the top TG68K.c wrapper can be found here:
https://github.com/rkrajnc/minimig-de1

The first link is probably the same one mentioned by alexh (8.Feb 2013). I think tobiflex is more active on the a1k.org forum, so maybe he published another release there? I also heard that he is rewriting the core, but that is as much as I know.

matthey: you can pass the github link to majsta if it will be useful to him, that minimig code has a working cache and no problems reported so far.
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Old 10 September 2014, 02:39   #15
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matthey: you can pass the github link to majsta if it will be useful to him, that minimig code has a working cache and no problems reported so far.
I notified majsta about this thread. Thanks. I hope development of the TG68 can be organized better in the future.
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Old 10 October 2014, 15:23   #16
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Sorry for resurrecting one of my old threads, I wanted to ask a few more questions of the community.

I've still not made a decision on whether to get something like a MIST, but I recently got an Android tablet and have been experimenting with loads of emulators. This let me to wonder whether something like an Ouya might be a better general purpose emulation machine (and it's half the cost too).

Anyone got any comments about how well it performs? I've read some comments that say its great for emulating consoles, but not so good for computers with keyboards. If I bought one I'd be plugging in a USB keyboard and mouse, but wondered whether there were still issues?
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Old 31 October 2014, 16:57   #17
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If you mainly want to play games, cycle accurate FPGA implementation is probably the better way.

If you want want to do computing, then cycle accurate simulation isn't as important. Software emulation support things that it brings in from the host environment such as networking, USB and RTG. The best part is that it is FREE not via add-on or external dongles.

As for whose FPGA, I am biased towards one that is currently has open its sources to the public. I am working on my own FPGA board.
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Old 16 February 2015, 02:53   #18
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I am considering the MIST too. But mainly for Atari ST and some Amiga. I have real Amiga's but I never owned an Atari ST. Would this be a good solution for that experience, vs software emulation?

Any thoughts you have if you have run the STe or Amiga cores would be most helpful.
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Old 16 February 2015, 04:15   #19
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I am considering the MIST too. But mainly for Atari ST and some Amiga. I have real Amiga's but I never owned an Atari ST. Would this be a good solution for that experience, vs software emulation?

Any thoughts you have if you have run the STe or Amiga cores would be most helpful.
I have not used Mist or fpgaArcade but there has been some changes in these products since this thread began. Mist now supports AGA. The Mist guys and Apollo Team guys have been communicating and I believe Mist has a better chance of getting the Phoenix 68020 FPGA CPU core which would make it as fast as a 68060 and faster than Majsta's accelerator because it has a bigger and more advanced Altera FPGA (Altera is the preferred FPGA brand by the Apollo Team). The fpgaArcade still has 2x the memory and should be competitive in performance with the 68060 expansion board (also FPU and MMU) if it ever makes it to production but at a much higher total price. I would expect fpgaArcade to have the edge in emulation accuracy but Mist is a good value now and there is a chance it would offer better performance/value in the future. The following is a thread which talks about the Phoenix core and Mist:

http://www.atari-forum.com/viewtopic...06a214d70aa186

There is a lot of good Mist info on the forum linked above even if much of it is Atari related.

Last edited by matthey; 16 February 2015 at 05:27.
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Old 16 February 2015, 18:59   #20
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@matthey, Thank you for the link this is exactly what I wanted to read. Thanks!
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