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 Post subject: SD2IEC "floppy emulator"
PostPosted: Sat May 24, 2008 11:43 am 
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Seems the SD2IEC (improved MMC2IEC) isn't very prominent in this forum... there's been lots of improvements in the last months so let's give an update :-).

The SD2IEC is a hardware mass storage device using an SD/MMC card and interfacing with the IEC bus. It is based on the ATmega644 microcontroller from the Atmel AVR microcontroller family. The most prominent use of SD2IEC is emulation/replacement of a Commodore-1541 disk drive for a C64. Hardware and the microcontroller's firmware is available as open source (GPL). SD2IEC is the successor of MMC2IEC. It uses the ATmega644 microcontroller (more RAM and flash than ATmega32) and uses a different circuit for driving the IEC bus. Hardware parts for the SD2IEC cost less than 20 Euros.

Features of SD2IEC firmware 0.7:
  • D64/M2I support (both reading and writing for D64, even with direct sector access using U1/U2)
  • PRG/P00 etc. support
  • Subdirectory support (CMD command syntax).
  • Support for Turbo Disk AKA Fast Load AKA Speeddisk fastloader
  • Supports the JiffyDOS fast serial bus protocol
  • Supports the Final Cartridge 3 fastloader/fastsaver
  • Supports an external "disk change" button
  • Supports FAT long file names
  • Supports FAT12/FAT16/FAT32 formatted SD cards
  • Improved IEC compatibility (expect all apps that run in VICE without exact floppy emulation to run)

For details (including a comparison with 1541U and 1541-III), see
http://www.c64-wiki.com/index.php/SD2IEC


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 08, 2008 8:17 am 
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This is a fantastic project.

I personally am waiting for one of these to be made available commercially with the true C64 Serial Drive Din connectors (2, one for pass through).

There are lots of alternative projects like the 1541 Ultimate. But who can afford such expensive things?

For me the SD2IEC is a much more realistic option that can fit into the budget of my hobby.

I also hope to see a Cheap RR-Net solution.

.-.-.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 08, 2008 4:12 pm 
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vk4akp wrote:
I personally am waiting for one of these to be made available commercially with the true C64 Serial Drive Din connectors (2, one for pass through).

uIEC.

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 09, 2008 12:22 am 
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uIEC is commercially available?

NKC Electronics sells a device that's based on the SD2IEC predecessor: http://www.nkcelectronics.com/mmc2iec-commodore-disk-drive-emulation-devic.html. As far as I heard this is currently out of production though. It will be replaced with a new design that's really SD2IEC compatible (see http://jledger.proboards19.com/index.cgi?board=dtvhacking&action=display&thread=2688&page=2#19080).


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 09, 2008 2:22 am 
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1570 wrote:
uIEC is commercially available?

Sure is. JIm Brain designed them (there are two models) and he makes and sells them too.

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PostPosted: Fri Oct 10, 2008 12:25 am 
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The success of the uIEC has forced me to delay getting the web site in order, so I don't have a web page for it at present, but I am selling them. I have 70 or so of the uIEC/IDE+CF version in process of being manufactured, and I am working on adding SD card support to the boards (the firmware already supports SD.

Each uIEC contains a 128kB AVR, and only 50 kB is in use. Since the firmware can be updated by the user without any special skills, there's plenty of room to add features and push them to owners.

Jim


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 10, 2008 5:33 am 
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Hi Guys, I'm still getting up to speed with understanding all the variants of this project but so far I am absolutely wrapped in the availability and on going development of these devices.

Is there any future thought about the possibilities of replacing IDE with SATA or adding networking like RR-net etc?

It's good to see SD card support coming. I assume that SDHC will be supported? I believe the only difference is that SDHC is Fat32 which I see already has support.

On a personal note. I notice a lot of these projects opt for a cartridge port approach. Personally I tend to like to see stand alone devices that interface with a dual Serial IEEE-488 (Din) connector (one for pass through). This approach also means compatibility with other CBM 8bit'ers like the Vic-20, C128, C16, +4 and so on.

This sort of fits in more nicely with the old design mentality of chained bus devices.

Another thing that I think would be really cool is to see some casing designs similar to the CMD range. I think one of CMD's biggest strengths was the the cosmetic attention to replicating the old CBM look and feel of the external casing.

Has anyone thought about Doing a modern day version of the Vic-Switch? Most likely not that hard to implement. I'm sure many collectors would love to piggyback their complete collection of CBM 8bit'ers onto the one device chain for storage, networking and printing etc.

Is there any possibility of the developers applying their skills towards a similar Amiga project? Currently there is a gaping gap in the market for a board or device to offer A1000 / A500 expanded ram, storage & networking.

I do understand though that all this takes much work and in the modern day world we live in often time and resources are scarce.

I would like to thank you once again for your efforts. You certainly have another customer here for ongoing products as they become available and as funds allow.

Many TNX! - ~ Ken - VK4AKP ~
.-.-.


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 11, 2008 1:24 am 
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I can't address some of your questions because you're non-specific about which device you're referring to.

vk4akp wrote:
On a personal note. I notice a lot of these projects opt for a cartridge port approach.

Some do, some don't. There are advantages and disadvantages either way.

Quote:
Another thing that I think would be really cool is to see some casing designs similar to the CMD range.

Designing and manufacturing enclosures is time consuming and costly. It's also boring. I think that explains why most hobbyist designed projects come bare.

Quote:
Has anyone thought about Doing a modern day version of the Vic-Switch?

I built a simple IEC switcher so that I could use my 1541 Ultimate with my 64 and VIC-20. I leave the 1541U plugged into the 64 so I have the benefits of the on-screen d64 selector. I found it a bit cumbersome to use in stand-alone mode and it robbed me of much of the functionality. I suppose I could make a few more for sale but there doesn't seem to be much demand.

Quote:
Is there any possibility of the developers applying their skills towards a similar Amiga project? Currently there is a gaping gap in the market for a board or device to offer A1000 / A500 expanded ram, storage & networking.

There's as much development going on in the Amiga world as there is in the 8 bit world. Perhaps you should have a look around and then we'll talk because listing all the various projects would be a huge task. EAB and A1K are two good places to browse about.

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PostPosted: Sat Oct 11, 2008 6:48 am 
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vk4akp wrote:
Is there any future thought about the possibilities of replacing IDE with SATA or adding networking like RR-net etc?

Can you provide some rationale? SATA requires somewhat expensive driver ICs and such. I know PATA is older, but I don't think it will disappear anytime soon.
Quote:
It's good to see SD card support coming. I assume that SDHC will be supported? I believe the only difference is that SDHC is Fat32 which I see already has support.

SDHC is already supported in the sd2iec firmware.
Quote:
On a personal note. I notice a lot of these projects opt for a cartridge port approach. Personally I tend to like to see stand alone devices that interface with a dual Serial IEEE-488 (Din) connector (one for pass through). This approach also means compatibility with other CBM 8bit'ers like the Vic-20, C128, C16, +4 and so on.

A pass through dual IEC port can be easily wired into uIEC or sd2iec.


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 11, 2008 1:36 pm 
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I knew about EAB, But I did not know about A1K. Thanks for the link. However most of it looks to be in German, so I couldn't read 80% of the site.

I'd be interested to know more about your Vic-Switch design. How many devices and computers does it handle? What circuitry did you use to achieve this?

As for on going Amiga development, I still don't know of any simple option for the A500 or A1000 to add SD, Hard Drive, Network, Ram, & kickstart expansion.

From what I see with the ongoing C64 products, a similar approach could be adopted to the Amiga using it's expansion bus port?

[/quote]
Can you provide some rationale? SATA requires somewhat expensive driver ICs and such. I know PATA is older, but I don't think it will disappear anytime soon.
[quote]

Only that in time PATA (IDE) drives will become hard to get. Already now we are seeing here that the market is starting to dry up. But I guess we do have a couple of more years left at least. I didn't know that the driver IC's were a problem or expensive. But This is why I asked. I guess now I know. Thanks.


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