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#1 23-03-2010 17:54:58

admin
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Purpose

Hi to all,


I am currently developing a z80 computer which i hope (when finished) to be a Newbrain AD.
Some features i would like to have:
It will not have a TV Signal or Monitor port but a VGA or some other interface to an LCD screen.
It will support a PS/2 keyboard.
It will support some kind of storage device (IDE, FLASH , etc) (NO TAPES OR FLOPIES)
It will support a 16x2 LCD Text display (instead of the green one on AD)
It will support an RS-232 interface

It will run most of the Newbrain's AD software.

The final project will be portable using a LI-ION battery, so it will be like a laptop.
I know it is very difficult to do it but i will try.
I have very little knowledge of Electronics since i am a Software Engineer so any help would be nice.

For now i have made:
A crystal oscilator circuit using a 16 MHZ crystal giving 8,4,2,1,0.5 etc clocks
A z80 interfacing with 32KB RAM and 32 KB EEPROM.
A EEPROM Programmer using PC parallel port.
An LCD TEXT 16x2 Interface to the z80 sending messages using ports 4 and 6 (this can be changed easily)

Next is the RS-232 interface. I need to find a 16c550 UART to do it.

I will put some pictures ASAP.

 

#2 24-03-2010 19:52:32

Saphir17
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Re: Purpose

Hi Chris...

A daunting task....cool
I'm only trying to copy the schematics for the disk-controller to a working DIY version.

Looking forward to see some "ideas" and schematics.

BG
Michael


Aarhus, Denmark
NewBrain's: Model A & AD, ExpansionBox, DiskController + Drives, ROM-Box
 

#3 26-03-2010 05:56:32

Colin
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Re: Purpose

Hello Chris

Greetings from Seoul in South Korea.

Good luck with the Newbrain Laptop build. If I can help in any way please let me know.

Regards

Colin

 

#4 26-03-2010 16:54:33

Colin
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Re: Purpose

Hello Chris

When you get to the stage of PCB Design and Schematics you might want to look at the following website who have free software to design the circuit boards and Schematics on  www.expresspcb.com

Regards

Colin

 

#5 26-03-2010 20:20:32

Saphir17
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Re: Purpose

Yes. ExpressPCB is a great tool.
It's also very cheap (well, rather cheap) to get boards manufactured at there web-service.

bg
Michael


Aarhus, Denmark
NewBrain's: Model A & AD, ExpansionBox, DiskController + Drives, ROM-Box
 

#6 28-03-2010 13:48:49

Colin
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Re: Purpose

It might be an idea to also build a USB Newbrain Hardware device. This would be a USB module to plug into any PC or Laptop and would include an internal Z80 CPU, NewBrain Roms, Memory and NB Operating System, similar to the Newbrain Emulator but on an EEProm Chip. The USB Newbrain Hardware module would utilise the PC or Laptops Screen, Hard Drive and Communications etc.

I remember back in the days of the Apple IIe computer which had a built in 6502 CPU.  There was an additional plug in card with a Z80 CPU on it to run the CP/M Operating System.

Regards

Colin

 

#7 06-04-2010 01:21:33

bertinetti
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Re: Purpose

It's a very good idea, but for me would be better to choose some kind of 'micro-system' (beagleboard etc...) and write some kind of emulator on top of a (very) minimal system. For example, I know of an Archimedes emulator that runs on top of DOS.
The hardware you want to make is very dated and some components may be discontinued, also, IMHO some interfaces are almost 'dead' today (RS232).
Off-topic, in the last days of NewBrain clubs, I read of a project using the HD64180 chip (super-Z80). Did some real hardware get made?
Regards
Bernie

 

#8 07-04-2010 11:29:15

cdesp
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Re: Purpose

The point is that i want to build a system with hardware components not having a FPGA that do all the work. I know that some components (or more) is outdated but i can still find them and i know that rs232 is also old but there are USB to Rs232 converters available.
The source code for the NB roms is available so i can change it to support new devices without causing problems to the software (so  i think) . My only problem so far regarding components is the vga or lcd interface.

I dont have any info about the HD64180 .

 


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