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Old 15 March 2016, 20:39   #41
demolition
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Originally Posted by turrican9 View Post
Even though a FPGA core is programmed to work like a Motorola 68000 it's still not the real thing. It's just an advanced core that can be programmed to function (replicate) like a real 68000.
Well, then it becomes a philosophical question. If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck..

From an electrical perspective, a 68k implemented in an FPGA might be indistinguishable from a genuine 68k except that the voltage slopes might be different on the FPGA due to it being made a more modern IC process containing faster transistors.

A 68020 is also different from a 68000, and it is probably much less compatible with a regular 68k than the Apollo core since the Apollo core supports self-modifying code while the 020 does not if the coder did not take steps to make it work.

There are plenty of real 68000 CPUs still left out there if that is what you want, but now there is also the Vampire for those who want to their Amigas to do more than what they could 20-30 years ago.
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Old 15 March 2016, 21:17   #42
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IMO "real" is the wrong word to describe that. The old 68000 are fixed cpu`s. FPGA is reconfigurable "cpu" as mentioned. A copy or replica. Both (can) behave the same. "Real" lies in the eye of the viewer.
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Old 15 March 2016, 21:27   #43
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IMO "real" is the wrong word to describe that. The old 68000 are fixed cpu`s. FPGA is reconfigurable "cpu" as mentioned. A copy or replica. Both (can) behave the same. "Real" lies in the eye of the viewer.
In my eyes, a 'real' 68000 is manufactured by Motorola but may also include the later versions made by Freescale, i.e. it is an IC with 68000 printed on it manufactured by the owner of the 68k design at that particular time.

For some people, the history behind an item is as important (or even more) than the item itself and they would prefer a battered old original over a shiny brand new, perfect copy.
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Old 15 March 2016, 21:36   #44
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For me the answer to this question in the present time is WinUAE. I can have whatever Amiga model / add-on / memory configuration I so desire

Back when I had an Amiga in the 90s it was an A500 with 512 KB Chip + 512 KB Slow (plus 2nd floppy drive) so that's what a relate a 'real' Amiga to
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Old 15 March 2016, 21:46   #45
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If configurability of a chip keeps it from being "real" then the Gary and Gayle Amiga custom chips are not "real" chips. They supposedly use a configurable gate array chip which predates FPGA technology.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gate_array

Nice to see another historic wiki Amiga mention.
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Old 16 March 2016, 00:40   #46
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If configurability of a chip keeps it from being "real" then the Gary and Gayle Amiga custom chips are not "real" chips. They supposedly use a configurable gate array chip which predates FPGA technology.
For me the difference is whether the chip is built from or "contains" the original design, or whether it contains a new design that imitates the original. That's what prevents, for example, the Minimig's chipset implementation from being truly "real".
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Old 16 March 2016, 04:45   #47
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Sorry, I'm a little bored about this thread, the questions it makes.

So the answer is: No, sorry there were more Amigas, most of them more powerful, so better or much better. All of them were real Amigas as you can imagine.

Don't try to make your wishes or memories as the only answer about a part of the Commodore history.

This is IMHO, you can think of course different.
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Old 16 March 2016, 09:39   #48
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I didn't know it was your thread @retrofan! If your bored of it don't read it anymore, no need to post your bored of it!
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Old 17 March 2016, 12:13   #49
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Once we get jerk/tear free scrolling in emulators, I don't have much reason for keeping real hardware around.
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Old 17 March 2016, 12:55   #50
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As long as software and hardware see CPU and it works there is no difference between softcore and hardcore HW. If 68080 will be ever build then for sure it will go same way as other CISC architectures (x86 is good example) - CISC are unrolled to uOPS and main CPU behave like RISC.
Technological progress made possible to implement whole Amiga (even with RAM and ROM) inside single IC, FPGA is used in natural development process to create ASIC and Custom IC's. When Amiga was designed such technology (reprogrammable HW) was highly limited (PROM, PAL, PLA), when MC68000 was designed it was only PROM technology that allow to reprogram HW.
Nowadays most of complex IC's is born at computers as software simulation - if someone is interested how complex is to create new IC i would recommend this video:
[ Show youtube player ]
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Old 17 March 2016, 16:22   #51
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Once we get jerk/tear free scrolling in emulators, I don't have much reason for keeping real hardware around.
For me It will never feel the same if I emulate Amigas on PC. Even if the scrolling was perfect. Nothing can beat the real thing. That is just my opinion.
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Old 17 March 2016, 18:58   #52
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Originally Posted by robinsonb5 View Post
For me the difference is whether the chip is built from or "contains" the original design, or whether it contains a new design that imitates the original. That's what prevents, for example, the Minimig's chipset implementation from being truly "real".
Yea. IMO, a chip has to simulate the original behavior down to a fairly low level to be "real" (original enough). This may or may not be possible with FPGA depending on what is being simulated. I also like new designs based on old designs (old forgotten technology is sometimes surprisingly good when modernized) so I don't have a problem with needing to be "real". Maintaining the same philosophy and feel are more important to me .

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As long as software and hardware see CPU and it works there is no difference between softcore and hardcore HW.
There is a difference in efficiency. It is easy to say that the electricity cost is worth a few trips to the pub and you can always wear head phones so you don't have to hear the power supply fan but efficiency is nice.

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If 68080 will be ever build then for sure it will go same way as other CISC architectures (x86 is good example) - CISC are unrolled to uOPS and main CPU behave like RISC.
I'm not so sure the 68k would benefit enough from uOPs (uses additional logic for a small gain in performance). It is not as necessary on the 68k because the code is easier to decode and superscalar check and the average instruction length is shorter. I doubt it would be worthwhile on even a 68k power design. A 68k design would probably need to become OoO for maximum performance though. The 68060 and Apollo (very similar) superscalar only designs are very efficient and more efficient than is possible on the x86/x86_64 where the superscalar Atom processors were abandoned leaving a big efficiency gap between the x86_64 and ARM. Maybe the 68k could not be as powerful as x86_64 (close) but I believe it could be more efficient for a mid-performance processor.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pandy71 View Post
Technological progress made possible to implement whole Amiga (even with RAM and ROM) inside single IC, FPGA is used in natural development process to create ASIC and Custom IC's. When Amiga was designed such technology (reprogrammable HW) was highly limited (PROM, PAL, PLA), when MC68000 was designed it was only PROM technology that allow to reprogram HW.
Nowadays most of complex IC's is born at computers as software simulation - if someone is interested how complex is to create new IC i would recommend this video:
[ Show youtube player ]
C= supposedly used FPGA technology for designing the custom chips (probably late). FPGA technology has been around for a long time but used to be very expensive. Now practically every hobbyist can afford powerful FPGA hardware and it is cheap enough to sell FPGA based hardware.
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Old 18 March 2016, 01:13   #53
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C= supposedly used FPGA technology for designing the custom chips (probably late). FPGA technology has been around for a long time but used to be very expensive. Now practically every hobbyist can afford powerful FPGA hardware and it is cheap enough to sell FPGA based hardware.
I got one of these in one of my A500s, it was released in 1992.:
http://amiga.resource.cx/exp/blizzard500
Look at the big chip next to the memory.. yup a Xilinx FPGA.. Somewhat affordable back then already.. but ye, not like these days..
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