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View Poll Results: Which emulator do you prefer?
WinFellow 5 13.51%
WinUAE 11 29.73%
Both WinFellow& WinUAE 6 16.22%
Real Amiga 15 40.54%
I don't know 0 0%
Voters: 37. You may not vote on this poll

 
 
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Old 07 February 2002, 15:32   #1
Tim Janssen
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Which Amiga emulator is best?

For a couple of weeks now I can enjoy playing Amiga games on my new PC in WinUAE and Winfellow. Although both emulators emulate my Amiga very well, I prefer Winfellow because I can switch easily between different screendisplays.
What emulator do you prefer or do you think nothing can beat the ‘real machine’?
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Old 07 February 2002, 16:19   #2
Paul
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I voted for ‘real machine’, now my A600 HD is working

If I could only choose an emulator, I would vote winfellow.
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Old 07 February 2002, 19:44   #3
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I use Amiga emulation for playing games, period. I don't give a hoot about the apps, I have plenty of superb ones for the Mac and PC. So WinUAE is better, mostly because of the new save state! I can stop playing Turrican or Fire and BRimstone in the middle of a volley or slash, and return later
I must say, I enjoy Amiga games immensely more than I do modern (or old) PC gmaes!
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Old 07 February 2002, 22:15   #4
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I share Pauls opinion ! I also voted for Real Amiga cause you couldn´t get the same performance on all games in one emulator ! Anyway, I would consider Emulators really important to bring back memorys to people about long gone systems (and I don´t speak about Amiga here ). But in fact, most people I know that ever tried WinFellow or WinUAE bought a real amiga a few days afterwards
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Old 07 February 2002, 22:38   #5
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Real Amiga wins hands down every time for me. You just do not get the same "feel" on an emulator, no matter what it is for.

However, if we ever get a completely cycle exact emulator which takes into account things like bus arbitration, then it will get my vote purely for the technical innovation!
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Old 07 February 2002, 23:07   #6
Fred the Fop
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What does Bus Arbitration mean? Does it have anything to do with Ram allocation and multitasking?
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Old 07 February 2002, 23:22   #7
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From a purely technical standpoint, the term emulation means that, you're trying to emulate something either via software and/or hardware. So having a real Amiga as a choice is not really correct, just my opinion of course

As for bus arbitration, I believe it has to do with the expansion bus, for instance the Zorro bus and any cards connected to them, where it's decided which card has the highest priority and thus gets to hold and use the data bus for it's job until finished. Then the next card with next highest priority gets a chance at the data bus. I think this also holds true for the custom chipset, the OCS/ECS/AGA graphics, the sound, the I/O etc. They also have a say in this and what device gets to talk to what and when.

Faith, correct any inaccuracies please
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Old 08 February 2002, 02:06   #8
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Hehe, good point - it was an available choice though so I picked it dag nam it!

Hehe, nice explanation

Of course you are right about the expansion bus, but that is not the only one - when (as you say) you have CPU, sound, blitter i/o or whatever all fighting over say - chip RAM accesses.

This is why you normally get a speed up (especially in the A1200) just by adding some "fast" memory. Because then the CPU is free to do what it likes with it's own memory (hence "fast") without having to wait for another component to finish using the bus.

Bus Arbitration -> Bus Arguments & Bickering

When an emulator gets this level of accuracy - then we hit the golden time of emulation IMO.
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Old 08 February 2002, 02:13   #9
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Faith, wouldn't you say it's kind of amazing just how compatible the software emulators are, when you factor in that most are free, it says a lot on what can be done currently.

I still want to keep my real Amiga's for those apps/games that refuse to work properly or what have you, but as something just to mess around with, I love the software emulators, with all their shortcomings included
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Old 08 February 2002, 03:11   #10
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Totally! No denying that! Very impressive feat considering the Amiga went so long unemulated in the first place! No disrespect to what has currently be done, I was just pointing out that there is (obviously) stuff to do.

Obviously you could argue that is any emulator 100% anyway. Probably not actually, though some must come very close.

I have worked on and am currently working on some emulators myself. These guys are were *much* simpler than the Amiga, even the 16-bit one - and they are *still* a huge amount of work. I really appricate how much work goes into them, especially as they are all done for free.

Mind you, if you are into programming - writing emulators has got to be the most rewarding programming you can possibly do, I personally do it for fun (yes fun!) and not money. It is supposed to be a hobby anyway - technically in this country - my current employer can expect a share of any money even though it is done in my free time (I won't get into that

I hold no distrespect to those that decide to charge for emulators either, it is probably also one of the *hardest* programming (& research) you could possibly do too, especially if the system you are emulating is not publicly documented very well - just take the Jaguar currently...
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Old 08 February 2002, 03:53   #11
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[OT]
You know, I wonder why Amiga Inc., never discussed with one of the Taiwanese chip makers about doing an all in one VLSI Amiga chip. I'm thinking with the .18 micron technology they could have done this and created enough to make the classic Amiga available as a PCI card. I know there have been canceled projects intending to do just this but man It could have been nice to have something by now. This would have been perfect emulation in that I think all the custom chips could've been put into a single piece of silicon

As a side note Faith, when is the first CAPS tool going to be available for the general public. I've seen some of the WIP on the web site and I'm eagerly waiting to see how the custom disk formats are going to be handled, especially the LONG TRACK stuff from both Psygnosis and Readysoft

I think I still have my old Backup Buddy drive lying around, now there was a fun project to be part of, that and the Maverick software
[/OT]
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Old 08 February 2002, 04:56   #12
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I chose both WinUAE and WinFellow because they are emulators and a real Amiga isn't. And I have tried the Amiga version of UAE...didn't happen. I would also consider some the other degraders as emulators of old systems, but even then they aren't as successful at getting old games to work as WinUAE/WinFellow.

Obviously, there is no substituting the real thing, though!
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Old 08 February 2002, 09:10   #13
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There is nothing like the real thing!!

Playing on an emulator does not cut it for me, not even close .. The only thing I'd use the amiga emulator for would be to browse doc disks .. thats about it..

jmmijo: I think that would be great idea.. and would sell like hotcakes.. who knows why they dont persue it .. maybe they think there is a small retro following.. who knows..

RetroMan: I have friends who also bought a real amiga after playing with an emulator .. again, there is no substitute for the real deal!

btw, .. I use uae for browsing those doc disks.
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Old 08 February 2002, 12:27   #14
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Quote:
Originally posted by jmmijo
Ian: No need to quote the whole post, use either the relavent bit's or a simple @Jmmijo before your reply
Okay, the CAPS *dumping tools* are available now to the general public. You get it when you contact contributions so you can dumps games with it. There is really no point what-so-ever putting it on the webpage since it is no use to anybody but us at the moment.

The reasons for that is quite well explained in the lastest WIP - basically look at the section on why analysation needs to be done. The dump format will not be (and cannot be - you cannot do this stuff on the fly while dumping - again see that WIP post for a more in depth explanation) and cannot be the same as the release format which will be the one that emulators will support.

As far as custom formats are concerned, we have so far dumped *hundreds* of; dual format disks, disks with long tracks / short tracks, disks with numerous other protections and they all work fine so far (obviously this does not apply to when the dumping tool was in development - but that was a while ago now). So basically as long as you have the floppy drive accurate enough to cope with it (and the minimum spec Amiga) we have so far dumped 100% of stuff without problems.

When the analyser and remastering tools are finished, then we can start releasing stuff - the release format will be made public - including source code - and you can see how they are handled "in the flesh"...


I have not heard of Backup Buddy, but maybe Maverick - rings a small bell. Were you involved in development? What did you do? Perhaps you can help us with the hardware needed to write long tracks - please see the Wanted page for more info!

Last edited by Ian; 09 February 2002 at 18:08.
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Old 08 February 2002, 14:54   #15
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Cool Space

The biggest advantage of emulation in general is the amount of physical space one can spare out. Although I love playing games on my original A500, the accompanying 12 discboxes take up half my living room. With emulation, it takes up only a couple of megs on my harddisc.
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Old 08 February 2002, 23:14   #16
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Quote:
Originally posted by fiath
RCK: enough of those big quote ! we are reading all thread long ...
I'll check out the WIP again, perhaps I've not read and understood it clearly enough

As for my work with KJPB, I helped develop the old C64 backup utility orginally called Renegade, Taito made us change the name and then worked on the succeding Amiga version which at that time was named Maverick. I only created a few 'parameters' as we called them. Most of this was done by Bob Mills and some support help from a couple of others around the country. Testing and Q&A was my best asset. I did help design an accessory for the Amiga, an external floppy drive with a manual speed control box. This was fun to work on and test. We found the best drives out there to modify were the Teac 720k drive units Some Sony and Panasonic drives worked ok as well, but they tended to be unstable once we introduced our own speed control circuit. We had planned on a purely software controlled unit but the sales of the original Backup Buddy drive never justified this.

I'm still searching for my drive I kept after leaving the company, if I can't locate it perhaps somebody out there can help out.

Grab a copy of Maverick v5 and play around with it. Seems to work fine even with Kickstart 3.1 and possibly even OS 3.9 although I don't have this to check it out.
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Old 09 February 2002, 00:49   #17
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Though I've used both WinFellow and WinUAE, personally my own preference is WinUAE. Besides the fact that the emulation is more complete in a number of areas, I just like the way that it handles configurations better. Being the anal-retentive type, I prefer creating a separate configuration file that is optimized for each game, and then having a folder full of shortcuts to each config that will allow me to start each one by simply double clicking on the one I want. That's pretty simple to do with WinUAE, but I've never quite figured out how to do it using WinFellow.

Of course, being anal-retentive has a downside - namely that I find myself spending lots of time creating working configs for all those games, and having little time left to actually play them. But SOMEDAY, I'll be done with it, and can devote my time to trying to decide WHAT to play.

By the way, I currently have working configs for about 400 games, so if anybody is having trouble with finding a configuration that works for any specific title, I'd be more than happy to help out if it's one of the ones I've already gotten to work.
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Old 09 February 2002, 02:15   #18
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Quote:
Originally posted by Chuckles
Ian: No need to quote the post, it's just above this one
Chuckles that sounds great, I'll let you know if I run into any config issues

Last edited by Ian; 09 February 2002 at 18:04.
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Old 09 February 2002, 14:25   #19
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Quote:
Originally posted by jmmijo

I'll check out the WIP again, perhaps I've not read and understood it clearly enough
Yes, it is quite technical. We tried to keep this to a minimum, but there was only so much we could do and keep all the details in there that we wanted to put in...

Quote:
Originally posted by jmmijo

We had planned on a purely software controlled unit but the sales of the original Backup Buddy drive never justified this.
Did you get anywhere at all? A programmatically controlled speed adustment is exactly what we need for CAPS. Please see the Wanted page for more details!
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Old 09 February 2002, 22:01   #20
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Quote:
Originally posted by fiath
Yes, it is quite technical. We tried to keep this to a minimum, but there was only so much we could do and keep all the details in there that we wanted to put in...
No prob, I love reading technical stuff, all this talk about decoding the raw data is exactly how Bob did most of his work. He would dump the entire track to where it would wrap around to the beginning then start to decode it, great for the boot track of copy protected titles. This is where he got a foothold into the copy protection


Quote:

Did you get anywhere at all? A programmatically controlled speed adustment is exactly what we need for CAPS. Please see the Wanted page for more details!
Unfortunately the never got anywhere at all, only preliminary discussions, talk mostly, no designs ever got done and because we sent the specs out to an engineer to create the circuit board and parts list, I never had the schematics to it, and I can't seem to locate any notes either I have a feeling that I shredded all that stuff as I left the company in not the best of cirumstances Still no luck on finding that manual speed control drive either. Damn I was sure I kep it in the basement. I've been finding everything else, some old ICD Adram boards and even one of the first wireless Amiga mice, I've got to hook it up and see if it still works:hooooo
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