Re: Reu + Re: 1581

From: Ethan Dicks (
Date: 1998-06-22 22:50:32

Ruud writes: 
> The problem is of course that there are still people around interested in 
> my documents, projects and in what I'm doing. All of them are free so if 
> someone of you is interested, I'll send him the DOC (HTML). You may use 
> how you like it, even use it for your own documents.

I'm interested!
> Hallo Ethan,

> > I recently aquired an IDE interface for my C64 (IDE64).  It seems to
> > work fine, but there appears to be a problem with the built-in speed
> > loader in an SX-64...
> As far as I know the 1541 in the SX is the same as a normal one. I rather 
> would say that, if any trouble at all, the cause is in the ROMs of the SX 
> as they do differ from the normal C64s.

It is not the ROMs.  :-(  I got impatient and removed the hundreds of
screws holding the top on the SX-64 and started checking and swapping
parts.  The FDD board uses the same chips and the short-board 1541.
The SX-64 itself, of course, has a different ROM, but when I swapped
that out, the speed-loader still failed.

I now suspect PAL/NTSC timing differences.  I got the speedloader code
from the makers of the IDE-64.  The comments are in a language unfamilar
to me (something eastern-European), but there's enough there to figure out
how it works.

> So if I understand you well, this is a interface to connect an IDE-drive to a 
> C64. What kind of hardware does it use? Can it be re-engineered? Just 
> curiousity :-)

It has a 62256 SRAM, a 27256 EPROM, an 8-pin real-time clock chip, and
two Lattice isp1016 gate arrays.  If you wanted to reverse-engineer
the gate arrays, go right ahead.  I won't stop you.  :-)  While this
may be an issue in the future, this product is still in production.
I am the first customer in the U.S. (which is also why I suspect a
PAL/NTSC timing problem).

> ??? I don't what kind of batteries you use but even a 2.5 inch HD is 
> bigger then a penlight. So this puzzles me. 
> (The problem with foreign languages is that you cannot see if someone is 
> making a joke)

Not a joke.  The 1.3" drive is approx 6mm x 40mm x 65mm.  The 44pin
connector is on the _long_ side of the drive.  Imagine a drive the
width of a 2.5" drive, but 40mm long.  The battery in my brother's
cell phone is 8mm x 50mm x 80mm, give or take.

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