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Old 02 December 2020, 18:11   #1
kipper2k
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New Buster chip a3000/a4000

i seen this on facebook posted by Dave Haynie...

Dave Haynie

As announced not long ago, I'm starting work on a new buster chip for the A3000/A4000 for Jens Schoenfeld. I've been interesting in seeing this done for awhile now.
This is a new design in modern technology using a small FPGA. The old CSG gate arrays didn't really allow this to be done correctly in 1989-1990. While I'm still a bit tied down by the plug-in compatibility requirement, this is a chance to finally "do it right", which will also have the interesting effect of making it more understandable than the gate-level designs I did way back when. But I am a bit concerned about full compatibility.
Old Buster schematics would be handy. I don't currently have all of the versions of Fat Buster in schematic form, and that might be useful, though not critical. But if anyone out there has a schematic set or knowledge of any online, I'd appreciate a scan or link. Thanks!
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Old 02 December 2020, 18:33   #2
Mick
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This woman has some schematics but Buster is probably a long shot.

[ Show youtube player ]
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Old 02 December 2020, 20:10   #3
trixster
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Be interesting to know if he can increase the zorro III speed
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Old 02 December 2020, 22:05   #4
hooverphonique
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Plugin compatibility sounds neigh on impossible.. An FPGA in a PLCC-84 package with internal boot rom/flash, 5V compatibility, power pins in the right places, etc..
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Old 02 December 2020, 23:39   #5
torsti76
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Plugin compatibility sounds neigh on impossible.. An FPGA in a PLCC-84 package with internal boot rom/flash, 5V compatibility, power pins in the right places, etc..
Well, it could be on an adapter PCB.
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Old 03 December 2020, 10:49   #6
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Jens said in the Amiwest(?) interview that it will be on an adapter PCB.
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Old 03 December 2020, 17:33   #7
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The big question for me is whether it can clip over a surface-mounted Buster (like an A600 accelerator) or whether it needs to plug into a socket (like an A500/A2000 MegAChip). Fingers crossed for the former—the machine I want to use it with has a surface-mount chip.

Neat stuff all the same
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Old 03 December 2020, 18:22   #8
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It will have a PLCC plug on the carrier board, so you will need to have a socketed buster in order to install this.
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Old 03 December 2020, 19:08   #9
Matt_H
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It will have a PLCC plug on the carrier board, so you will need to have a socketed buster in order to install this.
Darn. Is that 100% confirmed definite? Guess I'd better get ready for my board going out for surgery... . Oh well.
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Old 03 December 2020, 19:28   #10
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So exactly what would be the benefit of this chip?
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Old 03 December 2020, 21:50   #11
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Speed improvements plus fixing bugs, I would assume. One of the better known ones is that there can be only a single DMA Zorro III card on the bus at one time. E.g., a 4091/4000T onboard SCSI and a Deneb (in DMA mode) can’t coexist currently. I certainly hope that’s slated to be fixed!
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Old 03 December 2020, 21:54   #12
nogginthenog
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So exactly what would be the benefit of this chip?
Faster Zorro 3 I guess. Unfortunately Buster (I think) is a surface mount chip with lots of pins.
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Old 03 December 2020, 21:58   #13
shaf
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Not all boards surface mounted buster A3000 are socketed, and later A4000 boards are socketed but early A4000 boards it is surface mounted. I'll confirm the revisions when i get home from work.
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Old 04 December 2020, 00:13   #14
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Faster Zorro 3 I guess. Unfortunately Buster (I think) is a surface mount chip with lots of pins.
84 to be exact. ;-)
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Old 12 January 2021, 00:27   #15
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My rev D is definitely socketed from new.
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Old 22 January 2021, 07:34   #16
AmigaHope
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This would be incredibly nice to have. A3000/A4000 Z3 is criminally slow vs. its maximum theoretical performance. It's over 10X slower than theoretical maximum. Even a 3X-5X improvement would be a huge win.
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Old 01 February 2021, 07:55   #17
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Quote:
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My rev D is definitely socketed from new.
Mine too, with a Buster 9.

Reading iComp.de forum, it is announced for the second half of 2021.... in the meantime I'll have all my Buster(s) mounted on sockets.
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Old 23 February 2021, 09:58   #18
thebajaguy
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Wouldn't mind Z2 compatibility to improve. Some recent research indicates z2 (slave) performance runs in the mid-2MB/sec range, and not the ~3.4MB/sec of a classic motherboard.

All the same, improved Z3 characteristics and performance always welcome.
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Old 23 February 2021, 10:07   #19
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My A4000CR (RevD) has a soldered Buster -11

I do hope they talk to Michael Boehmer of E3B. He knows more about Buster chips and Z3 compatibility than anyone
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