New (to me) Q40!

The Thor, Aurora, Q40, Q60 & Q68 etc. are discussed here.
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Chr$
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Re: New (to me) Q40!

Postby Chr$ » Sun Dec 13, 2020 11:36 pm

Derek_Stewart wrote:Hi Chr$,
Why are you bothered about the minium power consumption, a PC power supply will power the Q60 no problem at all.

Yes, but I was just wondering out loud about using a very small fan-less PSU, but they tend to be max rated 2A. I did see one in the USA with apparently 5A. But I think PSUs have come a long way since the 90s and a modern ATX PSU is probably very quiet in comparison.
Peter wrote:Non plug&play NE2000 compatible ISA cards, typically RTL8019AS chipset.

Thanks.
Peter wrote:Why not measure the actual current for your configuration and add a little safety margin? Also, don't forget the 12V.

Could do. I'll probably just go for a modern ATX PSU, easier than having to connect to and measure all the drives (while they are working etc). That'll be fine, think I even have one that I pulled out of my sister-in-law's old PC.


Collector of QL related computers, accessories and software even though I don't really understand how they work.
Original QL's: many (plus quite a bit of other old stuff and 140+ original software titles)
Custom AT cased QL system with Gold Card, Qimi mouse, Hermes and MFM HDD
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Re: New (to me) Q40!

Postby Derek_Stewart » Mon Dec 14, 2020 8:50 am

Hi,

If an ATX Power Supply is used to power the Q40, then there will have to be a way of switching on the Power Supply. The easiest way is to short out pins 14(PS_ON) and COM (0v), on the PC Main Power connector, as shown here:
Q40-60 atxpowera.gif
Q40-60 atxpowera.gif (4.55 KiB) Viewed 343 times

I usually use a mains switch on the power lead entering the power supply.

There could be a flip/lop circuit to toggle the PS_ON line, based on a button switch like an ATX PC.

Please look at the Q60 User and Hardware manuals, they do give some extra information about the hardware settings.


Regards,

Derek
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Re: New (to me) Q40!

Postby Chr$ » Mon Dec 14, 2020 3:35 pm

Derek_Stewart wrote:Hi,

If an ATX Power Supply is used to power the Q40, then there will have to be a way of switching on the Power Supply. The easiest way is to short out pins 14(PS_ON) and COM (0v), on the PC Main

I had to do the same for an ATX PSU that powers my Merlin Tonto. They also don't generally tend to come on at all unless there is some kind of load on them.


Collector of QL related computers, accessories and software even though I don't really understand how they work.
Original QL's: many (plus quite a bit of other old stuff and 140+ original software titles)
Custom AT cased QL system with Gold Card, Qimi mouse, Hermes and MFM HDD
QXLII card installed in a PC
Q40 and Q68 also present

Ask me about near NOS re-felted good quality Microdrive Carts - many available.
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Re: New (to me) Q40!

Postby Chr$ » Mon Dec 14, 2020 9:13 pm

Amazing, I've been having a little play. This isn't news to most, but it's news to me:

With the Q40 I can simply plug in my original QL's TDI CF card and boot from it and move files around etc (previously doing anything with the TDI CF card was tricky, i.e. imaging the drive using Windows and what-have-you). And... not only that, I can also put any QXL.win file onto a different CF card, pop it in the Q40 and boot from/manipulate etc the QXL.win, too.

How remarkably flexible.

And something else that was noticeable - the sound that the Q40 produces (just for a simple game of BrainSmasher) seems better too, at least compared to the other compatibles and to emulators that I have previously heard it on. I suppose that may be down to the speaker setup being better than how I have previously heard it, but I have a feeling there is more to it than that.


Collector of QL related computers, accessories and software even though I don't really understand how they work.
Original QL's: many (plus quite a bit of other old stuff and 140+ original software titles)
Custom AT cased QL system with Gold Card, Qimi mouse, Hermes and MFM HDD
QXLII card installed in a PC
Q40 and Q68 also present

Ask me about near NOS re-felted good quality Microdrive Carts - many available.
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Re: New (to me) Q40!

Postby Derek_Stewart » Mon Dec 14, 2020 9:44 pm

Hi Chr$,

The design of the Q40 is excellent, only let down by its initial batch release, by others previousily mentioned.

I bought thr first Q40 at a QL Show in Bristol UK, and there was issues then, I was told to be carefull p,uging the ISA Cards in to the ISA connectors, I thought, it must be a problem of pressure on the PCB by inserting the the ISA Card. But what I found out later the ISA Connectors were not soldered in inline and pressing the I/O Card damaged the ISA connector. There was other things that were wrong, but I have draw a line under the Qbranch fiasco.

The Q40 mainly used SMSQ/E, which used QXL.WIN or QWA container files that are located IDE devices, accessed by the I/O Card(s)

I used to build Q60 cased computers with 4xIDE I/O Cards, which gave alot of storage capabilities.

I used to connect Q60 to other Q60, QPC2 computers via SerNET, which is faster than the QL NET., the QXL I had, provided integration into the QL NET for the Q60.

The Q40/60 sound is QLSSS or simple Beep through a intetnak speaker or amplified speaker output.

Try out Qjewels which uses the QL Sampled Sound System.

It is strange that the QLSSS was said to no good by some well k own experts, but it seems to be in use on most emulation platforms.

What is the spec. of the Q40?

What version of SMSQ/E are you using?


Regards,

Derek
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Re: New (to me) Q40!

Postby Chr$ » Mon Dec 14, 2020 10:21 pm

Derek_Stewart wrote:Try out Qjewels which uses the QL Sampled Sound System.

Ok, I will try that.
Derek_Stewart wrote:What is the spec. of the Q40?

32mb RAM, 2 I/O cards with a total of 4 devices, 4x serial, lpt and game port. Pretty standard I believe.
Derek_Stewart wrote:What version of SMSQ/E are you using?

3.35.

These days I think the flexibility of CF cards makes it even more convenient doesn't it. I think I can get by eventually with just 2 CF card slots, one for the main Q40 system and one to use for swapping over other CF cards. I'm not sure that CD ROMs and other 5.25"/3.5" format devices are really all that useful - at least not for permanent connection, because it's so much easier to move files from/to a CF card.

And with the space saving gained from CF cards it opens up more flexibility with regards to the physical housing.


Collector of QL related computers, accessories and software even though I don't really understand how they work.
Original QL's: many (plus quite a bit of other old stuff and 140+ original software titles)
Custom AT cased QL system with Gold Card, Qimi mouse, Hermes and MFM HDD
QXLII card installed in a PC
Q40 and Q68 also present

Ask me about near NOS re-felted good quality Microdrive Carts - many available.
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Re: New (to me) Q40!

Postby mk79 » Mon Dec 14, 2020 11:59 pm

Derek_Stewart wrote:It is strange that the QLSSS was said to no good by some well k own experts, but it seems to be in use on most emulation platforms.
The QLSSS is not only not good, it is shit as it was designed with exactly one platform in mind: the Q40. Supporting it well on anything else is a huge pain. But I didn't want to split the user base needlessly, so I adopted it despite all its flaws, at a great personal expense time-wise.


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Re: New (to me) Q40!

Postby Derek_Stewart » Tue Dec 15, 2020 9:03 am

mk79 wrote:The QLSSS is not only not good, it is shit as it was designed with exactly one platform in mind: the Q40. Supporting it well on anything else is a huge pain. But I didn't want to split the user base needlessly, so I adopted it despite all its flaws, at a great personal expense time-wise.

Hi Marcel,

I would worry about splitting the user base, this was done with Qbranch and QL Today, with the negative press about the Q60, which was really undeserved. All this rubbish about me trying to hijack and pirate the SMSQ/E operating system was totally unfounded.

If the QLSSS is so bad, why is it implemented in QPC2.

To be honest, at the time, there seemed to no alternative that was being offered.


Regards,

Derek
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Re: New (to me) Q40!

Postby mk79 » Tue Dec 15, 2020 3:36 pm

Derek_Stewart wrote:I would worry about splitting the user base, this was done with Qbranch and QL Today, with the negative press about the Q60, which was really undeserved. All this rubbish about me trying to hijack and pirate the SMSQ/E operating system was totally unfounded.
No idea. In any case it‘s been 15+ years, maybe it‘s time to give it a rest.

If the QLSSS is so bad, why is it implemented in QPC2.
What about „I didn‘t want to split the user base“ is hard to understand? I certainly didn‘t implement it because it was easy or elegant to do...

Marcel


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Re: New (to me) Q40!

Postby Chr$ » Tue Dec 15, 2020 7:07 pm

I've tried QLSSS.

I don't have much to compare it with and my speakers are quite small, but it certainly seems to have a fuzz in the background. Certainly works though.

A couple of other Q40 related questions:

1. Am I doing the right thing to get the best possible display?.... I know there are issues with flat screen monitors and I suspect that's the reason I get a picture which is the right width but is too tall to fit on the screen with the default DISP_TYPE 512,256. With DISP_TYPE 1024,512 it fits but the text is too small to be displayed clearly. I'll see if I can source a CRT VGA and try that.

2. Before I play around... is it possible to print on an old original QL branded printer from the Q40? I had trouble getting it to print from my QXLII in a PC and I understand printing to the QL printer over the Q68 serial port is not possible, so wondered if it could be done from a Q40. No big deal if it can't!


Collector of QL related computers, accessories and software even though I don't really understand how they work.
Original QL's: many (plus quite a bit of other old stuff and 140+ original software titles)
Custom AT cased QL system with Gold Card, Qimi mouse, Hermes and MFM HDD
QXLII card installed in a PC
Q40 and Q68 also present

Ask me about near NOS re-felted good quality Microdrive Carts - many available.

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