ISSUE - Are MiST PCB revisions causing incompatibility? How do we solve?

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Higgy
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ISSUE - Are MiST PCB revisions causing incompatibility? How do we solve?

Postby Higgy » Thu Mar 02, 2017 2:17 pm

I would love to be wrong and we can delete this topic.
I am not a hardware designer or programmer, I just read through information and test.

MiST PCB revisions and/or component changes (SDRAM chips) seem to be causing issues, and I don't want it to get worse.
My main reasons for purchasing a MiST was the Archimedes & Sam Coupe Core, but I am seeing a problem.

Currently to my knowledge there are 3 cores that don't work with 'every' MiST:

Archimedes - last release archimedes_150416_r1028.rbf https://github.com/mist-devel/mist-binaries/tree/master/cores/archimedes
MSX - currently being discussed in the forum
Sam Coupe - last release - SamCoupe_20170206.rbf https://github.com/sorgelig/SAMCoupe_MIST/tree/master/releases


(we will leave 15Hz/RGB/VGA issues for somewhere else, this is about booting and running the Core)

Now, is the issue SDcard size/speed (Class10 etc) or what particular SDRAM chip is mounted on the PCB? Does the Core rely on tight timings which can be different between PCB/SDRAM revisions?

Can we (sorry I mean the clever guys ;) ) determine the issue and potentially create a solution or a design/programming 'best practice' guide to ensure future cores do not have compatibility issues.

We all love new Cores appearing and it must be fun to see them working, but slowing down a bit an ensuring that a released (I know they are always in Beta) Core is bulletproof and works with all MiST PCB revisions (I personally think) is important for the community.

If there are UK/Euro developers that have say 2 v1.3 boards, I am willing to do a swap for a v1.2 MiST so they have both revisions to test/develop on.

If the issues above cannot be resolved, then do we have a split on GitHub. Cores for v1.2 & Cores for v1.3 etc? I for one don't like seeing the carrot I cannot eat ;)

I bought my MiST recently and received a v1.2 PCB. Telling a reseller "I only want a v1.3 (etc) or I will send it back" is not an option. You have what you are given.

I know I am a nobody (and even worse I can't program!) but I like many other people invested quite a reasonable amount of money into this amazing piece of hardware.
It is in everyone's interest to have the hard work of created Cores available to the widest audience. Creator's work and effort can be appreciated and people buying MiST won't be in a lottery of 'will it, won't it work'.

I hope I have not upset anyone and I know this is a hobbyist project. I just like to resolve issues or get them discussed (good improvements were made to the BBC Micro Core by discussion and getting knowledgable people together).

Thanks for spending the time reading this. :cheers:

P.S.

With problematic Cores can we have a list or some sort of POLL? The important information is:

* PCB revision
* SDcard size & speed,
* MircoSD+Adaptor or full-size SDCard (I think the adaptors are just 'dumb' no chips etc inside, so should make no difference)
* Are you running just the 1 Core on the SDcard or are you running multiple using the MENU Core.
* If Core uses additional files / ROMS, please link/attach working verison.

DanyPPC
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Re: ISSUE - Are MiST PCB revisions causing incompatibility? How do we solve?

Postby DanyPPC » Thu Mar 02, 2017 5:59 pm

I'm a new MIST user, i have tested kingston, sandisk and trascend MicroSD cards without problems.

I haven't verified the Archimedes core, but all the other work very well, except for the MSX one which has "Disk Error" problems sometimes.
I have 3 SD cards with all cores installed, one for a lot of cores, one for MSX and one for PC-Engine.

The Amstrad CPC 6128 core is one that have sometimes problems when you update your sd card with other ganes or cores, but the solution is simple: just re-copy the OS6128.eZZ Rom on the SD Card and Amstrad Core is working again. At least for me work.

I hope that future updates are compatible with both MIST hardware revisions.

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Re: ISSUE - Are MiST PCB revisions causing incompatibility? How do we solve?

Postby ijor » Fri Mar 03, 2017 11:06 am

I don't know about revision hardware incompatibility. But not sure who is at fault here. It is true that MIST specifications don't mention RAM and FPGA speed grades. But if the core is designed correctly for the worst case, the slower FPGA speed grande and RAM, then it shouldn't be a problem.

As commented here in other threads, most cores are not properly constrained. My guess is that the problem might be related to that.

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DrOG
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Re: ISSUE - Are MiST PCB revisions causing incompatibility? How do we solve?

Postby DrOG » Sat Mar 11, 2017 9:37 am

Hi all!

I have MiST 1.3 metal cased board. Newest MSX core runs from a 2GB 'Team' microSD using it's own adapter, only this one core (and the necessary additional files) on the card. Sometimes 'Disk error' problem. Previous versions do not start at all.

My biggest problem is the Archimedes core, which does not work at all. Tried as first/only core with many different kind of SD cards previously, various brands, sizes and speeds without success. My MiST board has Hynix RAM modules, perhaps that caused the issues in aspect of previous MSX cores also.

Other cores work near perfect, some has problems with 15kHz video out, I wrote about it in another topic:

viewtopic.php?f=101&t=28506

These seem to be core/screen, and not hardware related issue.


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