Help with starting cores (no video output)

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roc
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Help with starting cores (no video output)

Postby roc » Fri Aug 10, 2018 8:07 am

Hello all,

First post here. I have been lurking for a while, because I am interested in the MiSTer. I have been using several FPGA solutions over the years, mostly meant for the Amiga.

Before we start, thanks to Sorgelig for creating the MiSTer and porting so many cores, all the other cores' developers and finally to the hardware vendors for keeping our passion alive.

Okay, let's get it started. I have been troubleshooting the MiSTer for a couple of days, so I decided to ask help if someone could have some idea how to make it work (and also to exlude I am simply doing something silly).

Config:
- DE10-nano
- SDRAM vertical
- USB hub
- RTC
- the reformatted 8 gigs micro-sd card that comes with the DE10-nano

Problem:
I can get the menu and select the relevant core, however after this step there is no video output neither from the HDMI nor from the VGA.

Notes:
- BIG MISTAKE from my side. When first plugging the SDRAM in, I put it in the wrong GPIO and powered the board on. Maybe this has fried the SDRAM.
- The menu is visible in both HDMI and VGA.
- the green leds next to the Ethernet port are green and static. The single led green close to the I/O GPIO blinks randomly.
- No changes have been done to swiches
- I enclose the SD card image.

Tests that has been performed so far:
- remove all unecessary cards and leave only the board plus the SDRAM to perform the tests
- tried two different SDRAM (I bought two, because I plan byuing another DE10-nano)
- played with the MiSTer.ini by changing the settings of dvi_mode to 0, 1 , 6, 8
- Test the output on two different HDMI screens
- Removed only essential files on the SD card. Mostly I tried the memory test, however I also tried the minimig, C64, vectrex cores.
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THaase
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Re: Help with starting cores (no video output)

Postby THaase » Fri Aug 10, 2018 10:36 am

Hi roc,

yes, you've most likely fried your SDRam 8O
One guy brought an SDRam from me and also placed the SDRam wrong (right connector but turned 180 degree - the 3 Pins in the air).
Ended up also with a defective SDRam - but the good news: The DE10 was still alive - after exchanging the SDRam everything worked normal.

I don't know about the Vectrex Core (at leat this doesn't need the SDRam - but I've no idea about usage), but the other 2 need the SDRam.

You should start with one of the Acarde Cores as theese don't need the SDRam - and if they work - you should go most likely for a new Ram.

Sorgelig
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Re: Help with starting cores (no video output)

Postby Sorgelig » Fri Aug 10, 2018 10:56 am

Plugging SDRAM into wrong GPIO port doesn't hurt - both ports are identical. Of course SDRAM won't work in wrong port.
The dangerous is connecting SDRAM in wrong direction (like THaase wrote) as it will bridge 3.3v and 5v together! The user who fried SDRAM only is actually lucky - he could fry the DE10-nano as well!

Arcade cores may be is not good thing to start as it require to make a compatible ROM.
Try arcade https://github.com/MiSTer-devel/Arcade- ... are_MiSTer
it's homebrew arcade and doesn't require external ROM.
Any core is not listed in this table will work without SDRAM: https://github.com/MiSTer-devel/Main_Mi ... t-by-cores

roc
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Re: Help with starting cores (no video output)

Postby roc » Fri Aug 10, 2018 11:15 am

Thaase, Sorgelig, many thanks for your prompt support and help!

I am not sure whether this is good or bad news, however Arcade-MrDoNightmare_MiSTer does not work either. To be clear, I assume there is no need of ROMs, so I simply put the rbf on the SD card, launched it from the menu, started up and got the usual no-HDMI output.

Silly question. Beside mounting the SDRAM (this time is good) should I change any switch on the board or activate anything out of the DE10-nano box?

Any other test that I could do? Before formatting it, I tested the embedded 8 gigs card and it worked fine with a kind of Linux.

Sorgelig
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Re: Help with starting cores (no video output)

Postby Sorgelig » Fri Aug 10, 2018 12:21 pm

If Menu core works then you don't need to re-format the SD card.
Make sure you've used most recent MiSTer installer from here: https://github.com/MiSTer-devel/SD-Inst ... n64_MiSTer
Then manually update MiSTer binary and Menu.rbf from respective repositories.

roc
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Re: Help with starting cores (no video output)

Postby roc » Sun Aug 26, 2018 9:21 am

Sorgelig wrote:If Menu core works then you don't need to re-format the SD card.
Make sure you've used most recent MiSTer installer from here: https://github.com/MiSTer-devel/SD-Inst ... n64_MiSTer
Then manually update MiSTer binary and Menu.rbf from respective repositories.


Thanks for the advice. I did use the latest installer, so the fault should be somewhere else.

As a quick update, I did order another SDRAM to perform additional tests. When it arrives, I am going to test it and report results.

roc
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Re: Help with starting cores (no video output)

Postby roc » Sat Sep 08, 2018 11:27 am

Apologies for bothering again, but I have been trying to sort out the MiSTer installation. So I post this in case someone could be of any help :angel:

Okay some updates about the troubleshooting.

in the meantime, I have got:
- New DE-10 nano
- New SDRAM
- New Micro SD card
- Downloaded all the files once again to ensure they are the latest release

Mounted them carefully. Used latex gloves, paid atention to put the thumbs when mounting the SDRAM, installed the USB/IO board with care.

Installed:
-- Main board
-- USB board
-- SDRAM:

Others:
-- I/O mounted only once to validate the lack of video output
-- RTC clock not installed so far

Thanks to your advises, please find below the test-results with the new board/SDRAM/SD card:

- The Boot menu works, keyboard respond, it is possible to change background with F1. All seems ok.
- Arcade-MrDoNightmare_20180313.rbf works just fine (was working also on the old DE-10 nano).
- Genesis starts (the screen is not going in sleeping mode) however F12 does not work
- NES does not work either


PROBLEM:
- When booting the memtest or the Minimig (this is my target) the screen becomes black. No video signal. No Keyboard response to F12. Nada.
- Tried to install the I/O board and the same result is obtained through VGA

Given the device is now a new one, I am clearly doing something totally wrong, so I report my config in case I am doing something stupid.

Questions for the experts:

- I haven't changed the pin settings on the De-10 nano. They are like the factory one. Is that correct?
- The problem seems to stems from the cores which requires the SDRAM. Is there anything else I could do to troubleshooting?
- Beside memtest, is there any other core to troubleshoot?
- I am not sure whether the MiSTer.ini files video settings. Please find it below. Any settings I could change as a test?

If some of you have some advise, beside ensuring that all files are up to date, would be greatly appreciated :cheers:

Thank you.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

- Re-Installed a new SD card with the latest (april 2018) tool. No errors.
- Copied on the SD root the following updated files:
-- MiSTer
-- menu.rbf
-- kick.rom
-- Arcade-MrDoNightmare_20180313.rbf
-- memtest_20180313.rbf

Created a config folder with this file in there:
- MiSTer.ini

[MiSTer]
key_menu_as_rgui=0 ; set to 1 to make the MENU key map to RGUI in Minimig (e.g. for Right Amiga)
forced_scandoubler=0 ; set to 1 to run scandoubler on VGA output always (depends on core).
ypbpr=0 ; set to 1 for YPbPr on VGA output.
composite_sync=0 ; set to 1 for composite sync on HSync signal of VGA output.
vga_scaler=0 ; set to 1 to connect VGA to scaler output.
hdmi_audio_96k=0 ; set to 1 for 96khz/16bit HDMI audio (48khz/16bit otherwise)
keyrah_mode=0x18d80002 ; VIDPID of keyrah for special code translation (0x23418037 for Arduino Micro)
volumectl=1 ; enable audio volume control by multimedia keys
;bootscreen=0 ; uncomment to disable boot screen of some cores like Minimig.
;mouse_throttle=10 ; 1-100 mouse speed divisor. Useful for very sensitive mouses

; USER button emulation by keybaord. Usually it's reset button.
; 0 - lctrl+lalt+ralt (lctrl+lgui+rgui on keyrah)
; 1 - lctrl+lgui+rgui
; 2 - lctrl+lalt+del
; 3 - same as 0 (lctrl+lalt+ralt on keyrah)
reset_combo=0

dvi_mode=0 ; set to 1 for DVI mode. Audio won't be transmitted through HDMI in DVI mode.

; 0 - 1280x720@60
; 1 - 1024x768@60
; 2 - 720x480@60
; 3 - 720x576@50
; 4 - 1280x1024@60
; 5 - 800x600@60
; 6 - 640x480@60
; 7 - 1280x720@50
; 8 - 1920x1080@60
; 9 - 1920x1080@50
;10 - 1366x768@60
;11 - 1024x600@60
;
; custom mode: hact,hfp,hs,hbp,vact,vfp,vs,vbp,Fpix_in_KHz
; video_mode=1280,110,40,220,720,5,5,20,74250
video_mode=0

; set to 1-10 (seconds) to display video info on startup/change
video_info=0

; set to 1 for automatic HDMI VSync rate adjust to match original VSync.
; This option makes video butter smooth like on original emulated system.
; Adjusting is done by changing pixel clock. Not every display supports variable pixel clock.
; For proper adjusting and to reduce possible out of range pixel clock, use 60Hz HDMI video
; modes as a base even for 50Hz systems.
vsync_adjust=0

Created an Amiga folder, which is actually empty
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Last edited by roc on Sat Sep 08, 2018 1:36 pm, edited 2 times in total.

roc
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Re: Help with starting cores (no video output)

Postby roc » Sat Sep 08, 2018 11:35 am

Double post. Deleted

NegSol
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Re: Help with starting cores (no video output)

Postby NegSol » Sat Sep 08, 2018 5:50 pm

Memtest should work and could be used to confirm your sd-ram board status.

Also maybe consider another hdmi monitor. I have some hdmi splitter/matrix that act up using the vsync_adjust. Try toggling it. Make sure to cold boot de10 after adjusting the ini. Also cold start your hdmi monitor as sometimes hdmi handshakes can get lost (at least when using longer signal chains with more then two hdmi device on the line).

Best of luck! :mrgreen:

Sorgelig
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Re: Help with starting cores (no video output)

Postby Sorgelig » Sat Sep 08, 2018 8:39 pm

this is the list of cores using SDRAM:
https://github.com/MiSTer-devel/Main_Mi ... t-by-cores

So, any core not included in this list, will work without SDRAM. Try them, but read the ReadMe of each core carefully as cores may require prerequisites in order to work.

Sorgelig
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Re: Help with starting cores (no video output)

Postby Sorgelig » Sat Sep 08, 2018 8:44 pm

Pictures are not clear enough to see if that SDRAM 3pin connector firmly sits inside the Arduino connector. Is It?


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