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Author Topic: GFX-NINE, the intruder graphics cartridge (Read 763 times)

Online gflorez

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GFX-NINE, the intruder graphics cartridge
« on: 2018.August.16. 20:23:20 »


Soon I will receive the new TMTLogic MSX graphics cartridge. This time it will be harder for me to make it work on the Enterprise, because this beast has to be programmed entirely by IN and OUT Z80 commands. At least I already have the M-Slot, so I don't have to struggle thinking how to connect it to our computer... There is an old V9990 library that can aid us to make new programs.

The story of this GFX-NINE cartridge is similar to the story of the SE-ONE, it is a clone of a cartridge also designed by Sunrise, a group of Swish and Dutch MSX developers on mid 90s.  Its name was GFX-9000, and was the last amateur attempt to update the MSX hardware on times where the Amigas and Atari STs where the sovereigns.

The legend says that the Yamaha V9990 chip is a cut-down version of the V9978, the VDP chip (Video Display Processor) designed for the MSX3 series of computers, never released.

Yamaha offered evaluation boards of the chip for MSX and PC systems.

From my own point of view, this chip was a total failure for Yamaha, as I haven't found any device  built around it except this type of add-on cartridges. Not surprisingly it is easy to find full batches of new chips on China.

Sunrise made their GFX-9000 cartridges as cut-down versions of the Evaluation boards, as can be  understood from this early document.

My interest with this special type of MSX cartridges is that they effectively work on an Enterprise, and secondly that they where supported by Prodatron from the first time. There is a V9990 version of SymbOS for MSX computers and, since the last year, a beta for the CPC series. Now it is possible to have our own V9990 version of SymbOS, the fastest, if run on a 10Mhz Enterprise....  

As on the luxurious SE-ONE, Hans has not merely copied the Sunrise cartridge, he has overcome the problems of the circuits with a logic analyser, also redesigning the card to fit on a  low profile case.

Somebody can say, "this will be no more an Enterprise", but I think the contrary, our loved computer can be this powerful, new and old at the same time.
« Last Edit: 2018.August.20. 01:02:32 by gflorez »

Offline John Fante

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Re: GFX-NINE, the outsider graphics cartridge
« Reply #1 on: 2018.August.17. 07:23:40 »
Great news :-D

I have a V9990 Powergraph Light from Technobytes. A really powerfull piece of kit.

Here is a impressive video of Ghost and Goblins that is comming to MSX and maybe some day EP?.


Offline ergoGnomik

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Re: GFX-NINE, the outsider graphics cartridge
« Reply #2 on: 2018.August.17. 08:48:03 »
I do know it is most probably dirty nitpicking, but I think you meant external not outsider.

Online gflorez

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Re: GFX-NINE, the intruder graphics cartridge
« Reply #3 on: 2018.August.17. 11:06:46 »
Yes, it only can be external to the EP.... But you have given me an idea to put it internally....(joke..., sure!)

On the title I wanted to express that this cartridge comes from another very different computer system... after all these years of extracting the best of our dear Nick.  

Other discarded words have been: usurper, foreigner, upstart, etc.
« Last Edit: 2018.August.20. 01:04:36 by gflorez »

Online gflorez

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Re: GFX-NINE, the intruder graphics cartridge
« Reply #4 on: 2018.August.17. 18:10:15 »
I have a V9990 Powergraph Light from Technobytes. A really powerful piece of kit.

Here is a impressive video of Ghost and Goblins that is coming to MSX and maybe some day EP?.

The GFX-NINE is a totally compatible product, but made in Europe so, no customs and less cost on postage for us.

Is really good that Ghost and Goblins conversion.

The differences between MSX computers and Enterprise are on the memory management and the massive storage management. The floppy format  is FAT12 on both computers.

But the cartridge control is exactly the same, on the same Z80 ports, so there is a lot of work already done in conversions.
« Last Edit: 2018.August.20. 01:04:00 by gflorez »

Online gflorez

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Re: GFX-NINE, the intruder graphics cartridge
« Reply #5 on: 2018.August.17. 20:34:11 »
I have found the source of an emulator named OpenMSX.

The code to emulate the V9990 chip is on openmsx/src/video/V9990/
« Last Edit: 2018.August.20. 01:03:19 by gflorez »

Online gflorez

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Re: GFX-NINE, the intruder graphics cartridge
« Reply #6 on: 2018.September.06. 11:14:38 »
I got it!

Tests with this cartridge will take a while...

Online gflorez

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Re: GFX-NINE, the intruder graphics cartridge
« Reply #7 on: 2018.September.06. 20:55:37 »
This  is the GFX-NINE showing SymbOS K9000 on a Zemmix Neo, a MSX2+ clon. (sorry for the bad quality)
« Last Edit: 2018.September.06. 20:59:01 by gflorez »