LASCAN, Should I make a few more?

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LASCAN, Should I make a few more?

Postby ralcool » Fri Mar 01, 2013 1:07 pm

Hi folks,

A new thread on an old subject.. Overscan.

Without naming names.. Darklord (oops I've done it... lol) want's to fix/centre the display output on his idea of putting a newer LCD/TV in his STacy.

Problem is, We are not the first to notice that often the display is badly centered on the screen. The allowable 'menu' adjustments are not as forgiving as they could be.

Overscan won't entirely fix this hassle, but it does give an opportunity in perhaps taking advantage of those spare border pixels for some applications that CAN use the additional area.

Often those programs that run in mono anyway for the obvious benefits of increased resolution.. are happy to have more... like Calamus, Page Stream, Cubase, LDW Power.....etc

So, Ron and I are planning to work out if the mod will work in his STacy. I'll have to make at least one more for him (And I thought I had one spare... hmmm.. can't find it...bugger)
If it happens that this is also compatible with SainTs HDMI output mod.. then that is just even more perfect.

I plan to do another batch.. maybe professionally, or just a few by hand as usual... it will be three or six PCBs..or one, depending on interest and etching results.

Software compatibility is actually rather limited really.. no games, and only some agreeable 'serious' software can use it.

But it works, and better than the original 'AutoSwitch Overscan' hardware IMHO, not additionally limited to >TOS 1.4....like the original... This version is pretty good I think.
LASCAN. I've used it quite a bit.. and am generally pleased with how it runs...Using CAB browser, and Devpac3 is perfect for me.

My question is. Is there an interest in a proper professionally produced LASCAN mod. Its looking like anymore than 10 interested persons is worth the effort.
Otherwise I'll hand build just a few again like last time, and wait for a customer for another couple years.

The mod isn't my design, nor is the software. I am only making the PCB, and whacking on the ICs that make it work according to the original instructions.

All risk to you if you want to try it. I know it works- and there are other members here who have one of my boards and got the same or similar results.

I could post screen shots and stuff, or link to my original thread when I did it myself. For now it is just a question. How many to build?

It only works on pre-STE machines. Megas'/STs, and hopefully the STacy. :contract: , and the wiring requires CUTTING of some motherboard tracks. Much fun.

ST. :cheers:

PS, The software for LAscan that provided its source code proved immensely useful when I was playing with the 16Mhz overclock mod. After some minor changes it was able to control the overclock mode with software using the alternate ACIA chip in the Atari.... Now that was awesome! :D
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Re: LASCAN, Should I make a few more?

Postby DarkLord » Fri Mar 01, 2013 2:10 pm

Well, obviously I'm in. :lol:
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Re: LASCAN, Should I make a few more?

Postby TheNameOfTheGame » Fri Mar 01, 2013 2:12 pm

Count me in for 2 :cheers:

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Re: LASCAN, Should I make a few more?

Postby DarkLord » Fri Mar 01, 2013 2:19 pm

BTW, I'm sure others have wondered this as well...what is it about overscan
that games don't like?

Can't quite grasp it in my mind - I mean its not like the mod is telling software
to change the res they open up at, is it?

Thanks.
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Re: LASCAN, Should I make a few more?

Postby Scarlettkitten » Fri Mar 01, 2013 5:06 pm

Count me in for 1 depending on costs especially shipping to the UK.
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Re: LASCAN, Should I make a few more?

Postby krupkaj » Sat Mar 02, 2013 12:58 am

What PCB do you use? The one from Djordje Vukovic (http://solair.eunet.rs/~vdjole/atari.htm) or did you design new?

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Re: LASCAN, Should I make a few more?

Postby Hippy Dave » Sat Mar 02, 2013 1:11 am

I looked at the schematic for this mod. This mod is Not for centering the atari screen on a LCD monitor. I suggest reading the documentation to determine that this mod is what you want. I would expect that a mod to center the atari screen on a troublesome LCD monitor would adjust the timing or polarity of the video signals.

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Re: LASCAN, Should I make a few more?

Postby wongck » Sat Mar 02, 2013 1:36 am

What happened to your super mod... lacsan, 4MB memory, speeder, tos 2,06 & IDE port ?
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Re: LASCAN, Should I make a few more?

Postby ralcool » Sat Mar 02, 2013 7:26 am

Hippy Dave wrote:I looked at the schematic for this mod. This mod is Not for centering the atari screen on a LCD monitor. I suggest reading the documentation to determine that this mod is what you want. I would expect that a mod to center the atari screen on a troublesome LCD monitor would adjust the timing or polarity of the video signals.


Correct, but when you see the software in operation- it can also be used for centering... but even better is its ability to eliminate the borders.
It won't do much good for games though... that would require something different along with what you've suggested.

krupkaj wrote:What PCB do you use? The one from Djordje Vukovic (http://solair.eunet.rs/~vdjole/atari.htm) or did you design new?


I made my own single sided board with ExpressPCB from the schematics, and etch them myself at home.

DarkLord wrote:BTW, I'm sure others have wondered this as well...what is it about overscan
that games don't like?

Can't quite grasp it in my mind - I mean its not like the mod is telling software
to change the res they open up at, is it?


The problem is basically the mod increases the screen memory space from 32kB north to around 40. This and the often strange tricks programmers use to get decent performance can cause conflict.
That and the fact there are only written usually for fixed 320x200 Lo-resolution . I've not really tried to run games on the thing anyway. Some might be alright.

This is the reason I suggest its really best suited for Hi-Res GEM operation. I am sure the talented programmers on this forum can explain the technical reasons better. :oops:

wongck wrote:What happened to your super mod... lacsan, 4MB memory, speeder, tos 2,06 & IDE port ?


I had to trim down the things that didn't run off the cpu pins. Lascan had to be separate- or appear little more than tacked on the side. I haven't fully understood the additional logic yet for extended ram operation, while the overclock I would like to get running in a GAL rather than discrete for purity of clock switching. Not to mention my primitive efforts at doing pcb design were getting taxed integrating all the different parts.

Plus my Atari is a little unhealthy too, and the project has been otherwise on hold.

Darklord gave me a shout to perhaps do a Lascan board for him, so I thought I'd put the offer out to make a couple more.

ST. :cheers:
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Re: LASCAN, Should I make a few more?

Postby DarkLord » Sat Mar 02, 2013 8:40 am

Okay, thanks for the explanation about the games. The reserved screen memory
thing makes more sense. Too many times in the past game programmers have
hard coded their games to only expect "environment x", whether that's just
a certain amount of RAM or TOS version. Unfortunately. :(

By my count, we're up to 4 now.

BTW, I'm gonna link this thread over at AtariAge, see if there is any interest
there as well. :)
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Re: LASCAN, Should I make a few more?

Postby krupkaj » Sat Mar 02, 2013 11:38 am

ralcool wrote:
krupkaj wrote:What PCB do you use? The one from Djordje Vukovic (http://solair.eunet.rs/~vdjole/atari.htm) or did you design new?

I made my own single sided board with ExpressPCB from the schematics, and etch them myself at home.

Please, could you post your new design? Maybe it is better than Djordje's

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Re: LASCAN, Should I make a few more?

Postby krupkaj » Sat Mar 02, 2013 11:47 am

I am using the Lacescan for monochrome. Clean GEM applications works really nice. It is similar to Falcon resolution enhancers for system.

It is a pity it is not possible to do it in STE as the needed signal is not available outside the chips.

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Re: LASCAN, Should I make a few more?

Postby ralcool » Sat Mar 02, 2013 1:08 pm

Sure, Here is the pcb I am using and am basically offering.

Lascan.jpg


Totally agree it works beautifully in mono.
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Re: LASCAN, Should I make a few more?

Postby Firedawg » Sat Mar 02, 2013 2:00 pm

I would like to reserve one. Thanks!

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Re: LASCAN, Should I make a few more?

Postby nativ » Sat Mar 02, 2013 2:05 pm

Can the board be wired to only be active when Hi res is engaged?
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Re: LASCAN, Should I make a few more?

Postby ralcool » Sat Mar 02, 2013 2:42 pm

nativ wrote:Can the board be wired to only be active when Hi res is engaged?


Yes but, No need, it will only be active if you choose to load the software that engages the mod. Otherwise the machine is normal. Bypass mode so to speak.

Easy.
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Re: LASCAN, Should I make a few more?

Postby Ice » Wed May 03, 2017 7:28 am

I would like to get 1 LASCAN board?
Is there any available?

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Re: LASCAN, Should I make a few more?

Postby Cyprian » Wed May 03, 2017 8:33 am

me too
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Re: LASCAN, Should I make a few more?

Postby spiny » Wed May 03, 2017 3:42 pm

guys, bear in mind this thread is four years old.


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