Random hardware ideas!

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Pr0f
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Re: Random hardware ideas!

Postby Pr0f » Wed Oct 25, 2017 1:09 pm

Interesting thread ...

Was looking at my old empty QL case and wondering what to put in it - and been inspired by several threads on the forum. I was thinking about a propeller chip to handle I/O - a thing it excels at. It should not be too difficult to get a QL to talk to one of these on a dedicated set of lines, and it could offer all manor of I/O capabilities.

Some suggestions:

Keyboard matrix
PS/2 keyboard and Mouse
Sound
Ws2812 (NeoPixel driver)
SD card
Digital Sound
Serial ports
Driving small LCD / oled / epaper screens

There is a library of usable routines to explore and expand on.

It also offers the possibility of being repurposed on the fly.


Dave
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Re: Random hardware ideas!

Postby Dave » Wed Oct 25, 2017 4:35 pm

I looked at the propeller too for a while.

Between us, Peter/Derek and Tetroid, there's going to be lots of stuff to shove in those cases. A simple keyboard matrix to PS/2 adapter would get the Q68 into the QL case.


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Peter
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Re: Random hardware ideas!

Postby Peter » Thu Oct 26, 2017 8:48 am

A QL matrix keyboard to PS/2 adaptor would indeed allow the Q68 to work inside a QL case without using the original QL mainboard as sort of "coprocessor" or any software change.
That sounds like a neat solution. However:

- Unless the PS/2 side of that adaptor plugs to the Q68 from the outside, it involves soldering some wires to the Q68 board.

- Unless the mechanics are small and designed very thoughtfully, the adaptor would not only allow to remove the QL mainboard, but also require to remove the QL mainboard.
I don't like the latter, because it would be a lot of work to put back in later. Also, the QL power adaptor wouldn't be usable with QL mainboard removed.

Peter


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Pr0f
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Re: Random hardware ideas!

Postby Pr0f » Thu Oct 26, 2017 11:25 am

Unless you have a small board carrying the power and network connectors, to go up that end of the case. A small DC-DC buck converter can handle the power conversion from the nominal 9v to 5V / 3.3V or what ever you needed.


Doug
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Re: Random hardware ideas!

Postby Doug » Thu Oct 26, 2017 3:01 pm

Hi guys, Dave do you have any more backplanes available?

I have an old Gold Card and the modern QubIDE without a passthrough - I'm presuming with your backplane I'd be able to attach both at one, allowing for simultaneous floppy and hard disk action!? Or would it be too tight with the GC?


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Peter
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Re: Random hardware ideas!

Postby Peter » Thu Oct 26, 2017 8:01 pm

Pr0f wrote:Unless you have a small board carrying the power and network connectors, to go up that end of the case. A small DC-DC buck converter can handle the power conversion from the nominal 9v to 5V / 3.3V or what ever you needed.


Nice idea! In that case, it could make sense to make a full Q68 companion board with the keyboard connectors also on it.

Could also help with wiring for LEDs, network, etc. and maybe add internal stereo speakers.

(Not that I intend to design that myself.)


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Re: Random hardware ideas!

Postby Dave » Thu Nov 09, 2017 5:07 pm

Doug wrote:Hi guys, Dave do you have any more backplanes available?

I have an old Gold Card and the modern QubIDE without a passthrough - I'm presuming with your backplane I'd be able to attach both at one, allowing for simultaneous floppy and hard disk action!? Or would it be too tight with the GC?


I can make you one. I just have a few PCBs left - I shipped off the bulk of them to Germany ages ago. Just tell me what you need.


Doug
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Re: Random hardware ideas!

Postby Doug » Fri Nov 10, 2017 4:44 pm

Dave wrote:
Doug wrote:Hi guys, Dave do you have any more backplanes available?

I have an old Gold Card and the modern QubIDE without a passthrough - I'm presuming with your backplane I'd be able to attach both at one, allowing for simultaneous floppy and hard disk action!? Or would it be too tight with the GC?


I can make you one. I just have a few PCBs left - I shipped off the bulk of them to Germany ages ago. Just tell me what you need.


Thanks Dave, that would be great.

I just want to be able to plug my QubIDE and Gold Card into the QL at the same time, in order to be able to run floppies and a hard disk on one machine at the same time.

(The hard disk in question the popular solution of an SD card on a little IDE to SD board, plugged in to the QubIDE)

Sometimes it could be a different combo of QubIDE and Trump Card, if the software I'm running doesn't play well with the Gold Card I guess.

I can't imagine it is possible to fit a GC and QubIDE with both beginning from inside the QL? - would a solution be possible where one card is plugged into the backplane within the QL in the normal way, and the other is plugged in outside the casing, via a sort of extension cable coming from another slot of the backplane?

That's it really! Let me know if you need any further information.

Cheers

P.S. I'm wary of spamming up the thread with this specific request, though figure others may also be in a similar boat!

P.P.S Was a general extension cable ever made for the expansion slot to give people the option of moving their cards around/behind and out of the way, as opposed to the typical 4 foot wide QL?! (Like this example for IDE cables: https://www.pccables.com/images/Yellow- ... 4-Inch.jpg)


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Peter
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Re: Random hardware ideas!

Postby Peter » Fri Nov 10, 2017 7:55 pm

Doug wrote:I just want to be able to plug my QubIDE and Gold Card into the QL at the same time, in order to be able to run floppies and a hard disk on one machine at the same time.

Out of curiosity: What is the advantage of this much larger solution over QL-SD, which is also Qubide on SDHC card, just as container in FAT32, not raw?

Only the more mature driver?


Doug
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Re: Random hardware ideas!

Postby Doug » Sat Nov 11, 2017 11:32 am

Peter wrote:Out of curiosity: What is the advantage of this much larger solution over QL-SD, which is also Qubide on SDHC card, just as container in FAT32, not raw?

Only the more mature driver?


Yeah, no big advantage, I was just late to the QL-SD party and they are no longer being sold anywhere as far as I can tell, so the QubIDE card was the only option.



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