My new Oric site

In this forum you can write about anything that does not fit in other forums.
This includes generic Oric talkings and things that are totaly unrelated but want to share with people here :)
jorodr
Flying Officer
Posts: 169
Joined: Thu Aug 09, 2007 9:04 pm
Contact:

My new Oric site

Post by jorodr »

Hello guys.
I have started to translate in English my Pravetz 8D site:
http://www.sofiaprint.com/pravetz8d_bul ... 8D_en.html
There's a lot of mistakes I'm sure. If anyone want to help make text better I'll be full of thanks. There's some interesting things I've upload. At first - Bulgarian emulator Emul8D (at early stage, but working with a lot of programs). It's interesting with speech synteze support. You can download the speak program there too. There's some excellent games and very good monitor program. I'll upload BigMac assembler soon, but it only works with Emul8D and real Pravetz 8D + pravetz floppy drive + Dos 8D v. 1.x.
If there's other things you are interested about Pravetz you can write to me.
Best regards,
George

User avatar
Xeron
Emulation expert
Posts: 390
Joined: Sat Mar 07, 2009 5:18 pm
Contact:

Post by Xeron »

Nice site!

Do you know if there is some documentation for the Pravetz disk controller in english? I would like to add support for it in Oricutron.

jorodr
Flying Officer
Posts: 169
Joined: Thu Aug 09, 2007 9:04 pm
Contact:

Pravetz disk controller

Post by jorodr »

Yes, I have needed info. You can see some of it at:
http://www.sofiaprint.com/pravetz8d/Pravetz%208D.html
- another page of mine. There's the schematics of the controller, overlay-RAM controller and files needed for disk driver
If you want I can send you the schematics I use. Or finally I can explain how it works, because I have built it at CPLD. It's easy for explanation.

User avatar
Xeron
Emulation expert
Posts: 390
Joined: Sat Mar 07, 2009 5:18 pm
Contact:

Post by Xeron »

My first question is about the ROMs.

It seems there are two system ROMs, one for tape (pravetzt.rom) and one for disk (pravetzd.rom). If I boot Oricutron in atmos mode, using pravetzt.rom, it seems to work OK.

I'm guessing if the Pravetz has a disk drive attached, I should use "pravetzd.rom" instead?

Also, what is "8ddoshi.rom"? Where does that get loaded?

jorodr
Flying Officer
Posts: 169
Joined: Thu Aug 09, 2007 9:04 pm
Contact:

Post by jorodr »

Pravetzt.rom is original Pravetz 8D rom. It's better use it instead of Pravetzd.rom, but to start disk-loading you must type CALL 800. Pravetzd.rom checks if there's fdd controller attached (checks for #78 at address #320) and try to boot from disk. So it's better to use Pravetzt.rom. Pravetzd.rom is usable at real Pravetz, because it adds real reset support and some extras. There's a schematics with additional 27128 at empty socket on motherboard, so Pravetzd.rom checks for it and try to load program from this memory.
8ddoshi.rom is the driver for disk controller. It's saved at address #20 on EPROM 2716 on the controller and uses the first and the second page of this eprom. So you can see one page at #320 - #3FF and the second page at such addresses, but if second trigger at overlay controller is on 1.

User avatar
Dbug
Site Admin
Posts: 3400
Joined: Fri Jan 06, 2006 10:00 pm
Location: Oslo, Norway
Contact:

Post by Dbug »

I did not know there was two types of keyboard,
so apparently mine (http://www.defence-force.org/download/DSC00002.JPG) was one of the most recent models as well :)

About the speech synthesizer: Does it require a hardware module, or is it entirely done in software?

jorodr
Flying Officer
Posts: 169
Joined: Thu Aug 09, 2007 9:04 pm
Contact:

Post by jorodr »

Yes, there's two types of keyboards. First keyboards are not so good as yours, because sometimes they repeat a key 2-3 times at pressing a key. But the computers with this keyboards are better. The last model you have has a much better keyboard, but it's made cheap. The chips are not on sockets, there's two ROM-chips and I haven't success to boot floppy drive (bulgarian I mean, I must try with my Cumanas to try if it works). Did you connect floppy drive to yours? There's a few numbers of these models.
The speach syntezer don't need any additional hardware, just wire connection between pins 1 and 5 on cassette jack. You can hear the result with Emul8D. There's any problem to try it with Orik too, I have done it many times when I was a child.

User avatar
Dbug
Site Admin
Posts: 3400
Joined: Fri Jan 06, 2006 10:00 pm
Location: Oslo, Norway
Contact:

Post by Dbug »

That's awesome :)

Could you record the speech on your real Pravetz?

I did connect my Microdisc to the Pravetz, worked very well, it was actually more reliable than on my Atmos, the machine worked perfectly.

jorodr
Flying Officer
Posts: 169
Joined: Thu Aug 09, 2007 9:04 pm
Contact:

Post by jorodr »

I'll try my Pravetz with Cumana to see if it working. Maybe I have bad unit. I don't know, because I use an old machines, this is like new and I prefer to not use it. About the speech: There's no difference between the emulator and the computer, the emulation is very good. You need a little more fantazy to recognize the words, but don't forget about what hardware platform you use. The first syntezer of the author was for Apple ][. There's direct access to the speaker there. So to imitate such access you must wire-connect the pins 1 and 5 on cassette-jack. This was the first problem The second is that the CPU speed is very slow for such job . Even that there were a second version of the speaker, but for Pravetz 82 (Apple ][) that speaks much better. The last version is with additional speaker-board, but for Pravetz 82 again only.

User avatar
Twilighte
Game master
Posts: 819
Joined: Sat Jan 07, 2006 12:07 am
Location: Luton, UK
Contact:

Post by Twilighte »

jorodr wrote:About the speech: There's no difference between the emulator and the computer, the emulation is very good.
Man gonna have to try this Emul8d.

jorodr wrote:You need a little more fantazy to recognize the words, but don't forget about what hardware platform you use.
That is what i was afraid of. However the synthesis seems to be based upon pulses to Tape Out which will always be limited by the single bit output.
Many years ago i experimented with outputting Samples to the Tape Output. Some results were surprisingly good but these required super optimised code and a replay rate up to 44Khz (which is possible even on the Oric).
The thing that really interests me is the technique used to produce this voice synthesis single bit stream.
jorodr wrote:The first syntezer of the author was for Apple ][. There's direct access to the speaker there. So to imitate such access you must wire-connect the pins 1 and 5 on cassette-jack.
I have demonstrated before it is perfectly possible to program a direct link to one of the volume registers inside the AY so not neccesary to worry about linking pins on the jack port.
It has to do with using the 6522's shift register to shift continuous pulses onto CB2 providing a virtual AY register in PortA $030F.

However linking the pins on the jack has immense benefits beyond this..

Cassette out is connected to Bit 7 of Port B of the 6522. It is possible to setup the 6522 (software only) to produce pulses on this pin based on the timeouts of Timer 1. Therefore it is possible to produce an 'extra' channel of sound by connecting the pins on the jack port as mentioned above.

The upshot of this is that we could have 4 channel chip sound on the oric with no extra cpu intervention and only an external hardware hack :twisted:

We also have precise control over the inversion of the tape output line which would permit (with extra cpu) some interesting PCM stuff. :idea:
This is unlike the AY where we never know the logic level of a chip sound output.

jorodr
Flying Officer
Posts: 169
Joined: Thu Aug 09, 2007 9:04 pm
Contact:

Post by jorodr »

Xeron if you prefer I can send you .nib image file. Fabrice prefer nib for emulation, but Ivan (Emul8D's author) prefer .dsk. If you need more info I'll be glad to help.
Twilighte I don't understand anything about Oric speaking and unfortunately the source is lost forever (we tried to find it with speaker's author). I just know that Boby have made much understandable speaker for Pravetz 82 which is 1 MHz too. But if I can help with some other info - I'll always do.
Dbug if you can find Apple ][ disk drive like this (it's not difficult to find I thing):
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Disk_II
I can help you to connect your bulgarian computer to disk drive with Bulgarian DOS. When you try it you'll love it :)

I have updated Tetris and Snake Byte (boby version) with translated versions of the games so you don't need to read bulgarian words :) Try them, they're beautiful.

Quick guide about Emul8D:
To start a disk:
1. Start the emulator (it works under XP and Vista, I think it will works under Windows 7 too)
2. Press F1 to go to emulator's console
3. To load a disk - type mnt1 tetris.dsk (don't miss dsk, otherwise the emulator will create blank disk)
4. press F1 again to back to emulator
5. type CALL 800
6. type - tetris.exe or other game name. "-" is command to start a program

To load a tape:
1. Go to emulator's console with F1
2. type "type NameOfTheGame"
3. Press F1 to back to emulator
4. Type CLOAD ""
5. If you want you can type at console "load NameOfTheGame" and the game will load and the console will show you the beginning address, but if a game is multi-tape the second part will not load. So if you have multi-part tapes you must use "type" command in console.

User avatar
Twilighte
Game master
Posts: 819
Joined: Sat Jan 07, 2006 12:07 am
Location: Luton, UK
Contact:

Post by Twilighte »

jorodr, what format are the Disks and Tapes.
Can we use tape and disk files direct from Euphoric or Oricutron and use them in Emul8D?

I tried Emul8D and the screen was very flickery on one of my monitors but on the other was stable. However White was more like gray.
How much of the 6522 is emulated? Does it emulate the Shift register?

Very cool to csave a basic program and hear the file being saved :)

jorodr
Flying Officer
Posts: 169
Joined: Thu Aug 09, 2007 9:04 pm
Contact:

Post by jorodr »

The tapes are the same. but the dsk-s are completely different from Microdisc-format. 8D dsk-s are the same format like apple ][ images. The version of euphoric Fabrice prepare for us uses .nib format (another apple ][ disk-image format), but you cannot use it in Emul8D. Ivan have created a tool -nib2dsk and dsk2nib to transform images between the two formats. direct from euphoric you can use only tapes. But if you download 8D-compatible euphoric from there:
http://www.sofiaprint.com/pravetz8d_bul ... ravetz.zip
you can use pravetz 8D nibs. and with nib2dsk to transform them for Emul8D.
About the screen. Like says Microsoft - it's not a bug, it's a feature :-D.
The Ivan has wrote to me:
It's special zoom - draw over a row to make the lines in HIRES better. You must specify zoom = 2 in Emul8D config file to draw every line.
About the 6522 emulation I'll talk with the author about the shift register and will write to you.

User avatar
Dbug
Site Admin
Posts: 3400
Joined: Fri Jan 06, 2006 10:00 pm
Location: Oslo, Norway
Contact:

Post by Dbug »

Managed to get the speech synthesizer to work, do you know if it is possible to change the text it says?

Also cool to see that my hires/text video mode mix is working nicely :)

jorodr
Flying Officer
Posts: 169
Joined: Thu Aug 09, 2007 9:04 pm
Contact:

Post by jorodr »

Sorry, I forgot that it's in Bulgarian. After loading the tape and start a program ( I use CALL DEEK(#2A9)) Type "!"
It shows the HELP. The rows says:

1. WAIT X - changess the speed of speaking
2. !A$ or !"Some Text" - speak the A$, so you can use the speaker from your program or you can make Oric speaking with just !"Some text".
3. Print A$ - printing and speaking A$
4,5 - some strange commands
6 !TEXT, !SOUND - stop, start speaking
7. ":" - make intonation lower, "/" make intonation higher.

Post Reply