68060 based QL system?

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Do you want a 68060 based QL system?

No, better improve speed of FPGA based 68K
12
43%
Original Q60 with video updates
5
18%
New 68060 system design
11
39%
 
Total votes: 28
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Artificer
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Re: 68060 based QL system?

Postby Artificer » Fri Apr 06, 2018 5:56 pm

Hi,
Any native 68K hardware including 68060 has become slower than emulation on PCs. I wonder how people see 68060 systems today.


I love my Q60 and like Derek I would like the Q60 to be able to display on flat screen monitors or HDMI TVs.

The benefits of speed are relative as you say Peter. The Q60 boots faster than my PC which is a fastish PC with a core i7 3.5 GHz, gaming graphics card etc,etc. But in benchmarks QPC2 scores higher than the Q60, but not dramatically so. When I provided QTOP index figures for you for comparison with the Q68 I also showed on my blog the QTOP index for the Q60 at max speed. This was 194.84. QPC2 on my current PC gives a QTOP index of 473.86. The numbers look impressive but the speed increase on this index is only about 2.4. The Q60 I have was one of the early ones so has been in action since probably about 2002/3, the PC is much younger and has had a lot, lot of cash spent on it to keep it capable of coping with expanding PC software. In the scheme of things the Q60 still has a good turn of speed compared with emulation sitting on expensive hardware bought for other reasons.

The Q60 display with its lower resolution I find is more comfortable to use for running QL software new and old, programming and reading QL documents and getting in to the QL hobby than QPC2 on the PC with its greater screen resolution. In itself the Q60 is no slouch. So I would love the Q60 to be able to display on a modern flat screen to get the 19inch CRT off my desk, I would not mind a converter attached to VGA out of the Q60, or an updated modern Q60. The cache problem with Qlib is not so much a Q60 problem as a Qlib problem. If only the QLIb sources were available to modify. As for connectivity - USB, CD, Compact flash and SD card. I bought one of the early USB wiz devices and it worked with the Q60 serial ports. A possible up to date approach as USBwiz is no longer produced could be linking a RPi via serial as a USB, printer, SD card server for file transfer. Although IDE to CF adapters and SD card adapters can work with the Q60, but not all of them.


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tofro
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Re: 68060 based QL system?

Postby tofro » Fri Apr 06, 2018 6:25 pm

Peter,
assumed you'd be updating the Q60, what sort of bus system do you have in mind?

ISA? Those cards are increasingly hard to come by (for serial, for example)

Something else?

Nothing? (All on a board)

Tobias


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Peter
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Re: 68060 based QL system?

Postby Peter » Fri Apr 06, 2018 7:03 pm

tofro wrote:assumed you'd be updating the Q60, what sort of bus system do you have in mind?

The poll choice "Original Q60 with video updates" just meant an unchanged Q60 mainboard with a re-programmed video controller chip.
As you say, several parts, including ISA cards, would be obsolete. But some people (not myself) seem quite good in sourcing obsolete parts. (I could contribute a small batch of ISA I/O cards stored in my loft.)

tofro wrote:Nothing? (All on a board)

The poll choice "New 68060 system design" would likely have "all on board", if I had to design it. Maybe with a simple "legacy speed" extension bus like the Q68.


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Peter
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Re: 68060 based QL system?

Postby Peter » Fri Apr 06, 2018 7:24 pm

Artificer wrote:I love my Q60 and like Derek I would like the Q60 to be able to display on flat screen monitors or HDMI TVs.

What I already have is an alternative video chip design, which creates a 1024x768 signal that many (probably not all) flatscreen monitors correctly recognize. It is currently used by W.L. and I plan to send one more chip to Fabrizio soon. Drawback: Lower 33% of the screen remains black.

What I'm also looking into, is creating a FullHD VGA signal by line doubling, leaving only 5% black. The vertical refresh rate would be low and non-standard, but some monitors don't seem to care.


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Peter
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Re: 68060 based QL system?

Postby Peter » Fri Apr 06, 2018 7:35 pm

tofro wrote:Which reminds me I must try the QL-Amiga with the Vampire.

Do you mean QDOS Classic by Marc Swift?


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Re: 68060 based QL system?

Postby Derek_Stewart » Fri Apr 06, 2018 9:29 pm

Hi Peter,

The Q60 design was excellent, I built the Q60 with a colleague in 2002. 16 years on, I am still getting requests for Q60 boards.

I did think about building more Q60 boards, after the demand for the Q68 has been satisfied. I can source all parts to build the existing Q60 board, including ISA I/O Cards. I am still thinking about this.

If a FPGA version of the 68060 CPU is possible then I want that. The Vampire 2 calls itself a 68080? not sure the idea behind this. The down side of the Vampire is that it is designed to run Amiga OS.

I do not think it is fair to compare a Q60 with Core i7 3.5Ghz PC, when the Q60 was running at 80Mhz using the fastest Motorola CPU, I buolt in 2002.


Regards,

Derek
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XorA
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Re: 68060 based QL system?

Postby XorA » Fri Apr 06, 2018 11:34 pm

I tried QDOS4amiga on Vampire A500 and it just crashes.

I havent had time to try QDOS Classic,


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Dave
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Re: 68060 based QL system?

Postby Dave » Sat Apr 07, 2018 12:13 am

I'd be content with either a 'real' 68060 or a 68060 implemented in an FPGA. I think an updated Q60 is the least desirable option.

A Q68 based on a faster/larger FPGA with wider memory and maybe a bit of cache configured on the CPU would be stunning. Add maybe a membrane connector and Atmega controller to run it, and it would be the de facto standard thing to put in a QL case. All external connectors along one edge of the PCB.


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Peter
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Re: 68060 based QL system?

Postby Peter » Sat Apr 07, 2018 6:28 pm

Derek_Stewart wrote:If a FPGA version of the 68060 CPU is possible then I want that. The Vampire 2 calls itself a 68080? not sure the idea behind this.

For me, a 68060 on FPGA is not possible. Future improvents of the CPU inside Q68 could possible bring it almost to 68EC040 performance per clock. And higher clocks are achievable in the future.

I see "68080" as a marketing gag. Lets see if someone succeeds in running an Amiga QL emulator on it. My guess is, that the "68080" is too buggy to directly execute QL code, especially Minerva.


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Peter
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Re: 68060 based QL system?

Postby Peter » Sat Apr 07, 2018 6:57 pm

Dave wrote:A Q68 based on a faster/larger FPGA with wider memory and maybe a bit of cache configured on the CPU would be stunning.

Maybe even the normal Q68 will get a cache update someday, also reducing the video memory contention.

Dave wrote:Add maybe a membrane connector and Atmega controller to run it, and it would be the de facto standard thing to put in a QL case.

A QL keyboard to PS/2 (or I²C or whatever) converter looks ideal for a separate adaptor board. Not something that has to be on mainboard - unless it's main purpose is to be inside a QL case.

Dave wrote:All external connectors along one edge of the PCB.

For all except sound this is already true for Q68. (The work to turn the Q68 into a QL plugin would be manageable, and the lack of decent video for the QL sometimes tempts me to derive a SGC successor from the Q68. But that would split the very limited forces, so I probably won't do it.)



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