Author Topic: sega megadrive  (Read 6623 times)

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Offline sven

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sega megadrive
« on: July 31, 2006, 07:36:54 PM »
this project is that thing you can use in youre megadrive with the neo carts. it is the next project, and although it is together with the snes and n64, they have theire own board to.

O hai

Offline timofonic

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Re: sega megadrive
« Reply #1 on: August 01, 2006, 02:53:32 PM »
I don't understand what you mean completely, but it seems you said about using the Neo2 with the adapter for each system (N64, SNES, Megadrive). I think you are wrong because those are separated projects and Dr.Neo said this project is going to be a console (delete this part if I can't say it, but I readed it in the public foorum).


I think this project can be one of the following things:

- A great developed portable MediaPlayer+PDA+gaming system:

Using Linux (2.6 kernel) and oriented in homebrew scene and emulation. This could compete with other solutions like GP32, GP2X and being like the death Zodiac. Most of those projects failed because too restrictive (DRM), using dead OSes (PalmOS).

GP2X has bad quality hardware (screen problems, bad controller...) and limited because using a SoC thinked mostly for PMP use.

Having a competitor being a lot better and with more features as killer apps like touch screen and WiFi could kill GP2X and introducing into the PDA market. Of course this require to join forces with other companies for an international success and competing with big corporations.

This device could feature a FPGA for accurate emulation and fixing hardware problems, and Wifi for interconnectivity (internet, transfering files, multiplayer...).


- FPGA reprogrammable architecture:

A desktop FPGA-based console for emulating extremelly accurate most of the 8bit and 16bit hardware.

Creating a big scene community with competitions with great prizes. Attracting communities like FPGAArcade and other FPGA ethusiasts related with emulating of 8/16bit console and videogame systems.

Optionally include FPAA (Field Programmable Analog Array, the analog brother of FPGA) for emulating of analog parts of the hardware (like SID on C64 or filters for simulating graphic artifacts of RF and RCA). Think carefully about being a scalar upgradable architecture with special buses for adding more interfaces or a more powerful FPGA and FPAA, this could make the product life longer and a bigger community creating content for the platform.
« Last Edit: August 01, 2006, 03:02:53 PM by timofonic »

Offline Ex-Cyber

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Re: sega megadrive
« Reply #2 on: August 21, 2006, 05:01:59 AM »
Quote
This device could feature a FPGA for accurate emulation and fixing hardware problems
I had a similar idea (FPGA-based handheld) but found that FPGAs are generally rather power-hungry. Xilinx has some low-power ones but when I checked availability was poor and IIRC they still don't come close to ASIC or custom silicon. There are also Xilinx's FPGAs with embedded PowerPC CPU (which would be much better MIPS/Watt than a soft core) but as far as I know those are all quite expensive. There are also flash-based and antifuse devices from Actel but the cost is somewhat high for those compared to the logic capacity you get. Still I think it's not impossible for a small company to do an ASIC; Bung apparently made ASICs (manufactured by Oki according to a rumor I heard) for some of their last products for example. SoC design is no minor task, though...

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A desktop FPGA-based console for emulating extremelly accurate most of the 8bit and 16bit hardware.
This would be pretty cool if the price wasn't too high. Jeri Ellisworth's C=One system is based on the same idea, but is somewhat Commodore-centric and fairly expensive (269 Euro for  just the mainboard and RAM; user must supply case, PSU, drives etc.). I think it would be cool to have (just wishlisting/brainstorming here):

- Motorola Coldfire CPU/IO Processor:  These are relatively cheap, provide lots of useful I/O interfaces (ethernet, USB, et. al.) and depending on the specific model they might be powerful enough to do CPU emulation where appropriate (designing/debugging FPGA CPU cores is a lot of work, and there are legal obstacles in some cases like MIPS and ARM which have hindered some projects). They could also be used to emulate various types of "smart" peripherals like Commodore floppy drives, SCSI interfaces et. al. It would be possible to do the system in just an FPGA with a default design + BIOS in a flash memory, but having a hard MCU for booting would be a bit nicer.

- Core/glue FPGA: Probably a Xilinx Spartan-3E or the like. This would implement the system bus and SDRAM interface, and would most likely become the CPU in designs where an FPGA CPU core is used. It should ideally have a small fast SRAM attached for designs that can use external microcode (this makes the logic footprint in the FPGA much smaller)

- Graphics/sound FPGA: Maybe the same FPGA model as the core/glue one to take advantage of quantity discounts. As the label suggests this would take care of graphics and sound. Maybe have a dedicated RAM attached to it for systems that might need it, but I think it should be feasible to get away with a unified memory architecture in most cases. DACs could be resistor ladder or proper integrated DACs, whichever ends up being cheaper overall. Resistor ladder DACs aren't going to win any awards for precision, but this is not a project for audio/videophiles anyway and with a good CMOS buffer driving them the variation can be quite acceptable for standard-def TV. I think most audio interfaces are simple enough that they shouldn't need their own FPGA...

RAM: Preferably a 168-pin SDR SDRAM socket. This memory is easy to obtain, easy to design for (DDR needs more clock conditioning and IIRC it has a minimum burst length of 2 words), and cheap. The multi-bank architecture of typical SDRAMs should help with designing a unified memory interface.

Expansion: One slot for the system bus (with ability to have the expansion card be bus master and control the rest of the system), and one or more slots connected to extra I/Os on the core and GPU/APU

and a nitpick:

Quote
analog parts of the hardware (like SID on C64
The actual generation of the waveforms in the SID is all digital; only the output stages (DAC and filters) are analog. The idea that SID is an analog synth is a myth persistently propagated by Commodore fanboys who don't know anything about how the chip actually works. See this thread for a short but informative discussion of emulating it.

Offline neviksti

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Re: sega megadrive
« Reply #3 on: August 23, 2006, 05:04:19 PM »
...Dr.Neo said this project is going to be a console (delete this part if I can't say it, but I readed it in the public foorum).
Where did you read this?  I looked around and didn't see any mention that it is a console and not something for a console.

But the possibility, well... this comment has definitely got my attention.  Any one else know some tidbits they'd like to share?
« Last Edit: August 23, 2006, 05:06:58 PM by neviksti »

Offline timofonic

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Re: sega megadrive
« Reply #4 on: August 30, 2006, 10:07:56 PM »
He said it on a forum post, try to find it. If you can't locate it, then I will try it too ;)

Offline neviksti

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Re: sega megadrive
« Reply #5 on: August 31, 2006, 02:29:47 AM »
He said it on a forum post, try to find it. If you can't locate it, then I will try it too ;)
As I commented, I already looked around and didn't see any mention that it is a console and not something for a console.


I looked again, and I still see nothing.  However, it is possible you misread this post (he cross posted three times):
http://www.neoflash.com/forum/index.php/topic,2427.msg19425.html#msg19425
http://www.neoflash.com/forum/index.php/topic,2688.msg19426.html#msg19426
http://www.neoflash.com/forum/index.php/topic,2689.msg19427.html#msg19427

He is only saying that the next console to be supported isn't announced yet.

And besides, the first post in this forum section states it is a flash cart:
http://www.neoflash.com/forum/index.php/topic,2219.0.html


It is not unheard of for a company to recreate old consoles (for example:
http://www.playmessiah.com/product/NEX_index.html ), but considering the product family Neoflash is building, and the comments made so far, I highly doubt they will make a console. ...  Even though your console idea does sound awesome! :)

Sadly, I also highly doubt they will make a NES flash cartridge next either (since they seem to be picking off the easiest consoles first, instead of going in order of popularity).  People have been asking for a NES flash cart for a long time now (and I'd like one as well), so I do hope I am wrong here and they choose popularity (final profits with no competition) over ease of implementation (initial input of design work).
« Last Edit: August 31, 2006, 02:38:59 AM by neviksti »