Amiga 600 Vampire 2 accelerator board

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Re: Amiga 600 Vampire 2 accelerator board

Postby shoggoth » Sun Oct 16, 2016 3:44 pm

Come on. These discussions are so inherently and fundamentally pointless. I've been using different 060-class machines and have had great use for them. Obviously I don't use them to play Enchanted Lands, any idiot can figure that out. A 200+ MHz CPU allows me to explore projects which weren't feasible before. Just like the CT60 did, just like the SuperVidel did.

With all respect - all of you who think it's pointless to have accelerators, bugger off to some other thread.
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Re: Amiga 600 Vampire 2 accelerator board

Postby calimero » Sun Oct 16, 2016 4:00 pm

^
but you are talking about TOS computers that have much greater resolution and monitor option than ST !!!

I want Vampire but ONLY with HDMI and greater resolutions on my ST.
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Re: Amiga 600 Vampire 2 accelerator board

Postby joska » Sun Oct 16, 2016 6:48 pm

calimero wrote:I want Vampire but ONLY with HDMI and greater resolutions on my ST.


Then I really don't see the problem, because that is exactly what the Vampire 2 offers on the Amiga. I see no reason why an ST version shouldn't do the same.
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Re: Amiga 600 Vampire 2 accelerator board

Postby calimero » Sun Oct 16, 2016 9:41 pm

joska wrote:
calimero wrote:I want Vampire but ONLY with HDMI and greater resolutions on my ST.


Then I really don't see the problem, because that is exactly what the Vampire 2 offers on the Amiga. I see no reason why an ST version shouldn't do the same.

Because somebody need to recreate entire Shifter in FPGA in Vampire, right?
or maybe to integrate SuperVidel ;) hi Nature!
and Falcon DSP that still lacking in FireBee...
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Re: Amiga 600 Vampire 2 accelerator board

Postby shoggoth » Mon Oct 17, 2016 6:37 am

calimero wrote:Because somebody need to recreate entire Shifter in FPGA in Vampire, right?
or maybe to integrate SuperVidel ;) hi Nature!
and Falcon DSP that still lacking in FireBee...


The DSP is useful in a Falcon, but not necessarily when you're on a 100MHz+ CPU. But it makes sense to implement a graphics chipset, if that's what you mean. The most important part of my CT60 setup is still the CPU however.
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Re: Amiga 600 Vampire 2 accelerator board

Postby joska » Mon Oct 17, 2016 6:40 am

calimero wrote:Because somebody need to recreate entire Shifter in FPGA in Vampire, right?
or maybe to integrate SuperVidel ;) hi Nature!


Well, there is no such thing as a Vampire for the ST yet, so of course lots of things has to be done.

calimero wrote:and Falcon DSP that still lacking in FireBee...


This has nothing to do with a possible Vampire for the ST.
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Re: Amiga 600 Vampire 2 accelerator board

Postby calimero » Mon Oct 17, 2016 6:56 am

joska wrote:
calimero wrote:
calimero wrote:and Falcon DSP that still lacking in FireBee...


This has nothing to do with a possible Vampire for the ST.

I refer to: no one made DSP in VHDL so far. There is plenty of work and opportunities.
but I was thinking, shoggoth correct me, on Falcon "recreation" in FPGA as main goal (similarly to AGA, SAGA in Vampire).

---

@all
could some of you hardware guru guys help Vampire/Apollo team to make Vampire ST?
@instream, would you be interested to made some deal with them regarding SuperVidel?
@shoggoth you made software (TOS) part of SuperVidel, right?

does anybody from Atari community have any contact with Vampire/Apollo team?
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Re: Amiga 600 Vampire 2 accelerator board

Postby vido » Mon Oct 17, 2016 7:28 am

Just to not forget ... 68080 is 100% closed project. I dont know for Vampire but from what I see on Amiga pages all FPGA code is closed source. It is not like on the Atari side where we have open projects like FireBee, Suska, ...
But still almost nobody want to contribute to those projects regarding FPGA. MiST is different story.

So ... whatever you want, what it will be implemented the Gunnar and his team will decide if they will implement and when they will implement. Amiga is first on their list and with fittint Vampire into ST they didnt do anything yet regarding ST except opening of this thread to divide Atari "scene".

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Re: Amiga 600 Vampire 2 accelerator board

Postby AtariZoll » Mon Oct 17, 2016 1:41 pm

joska wrote:
alexh wrote:
DarkLord wrote:3D games are much better, example Elite, Elite 2.

Interesting. Most 3D games which are patched for faster processors do not benefit from the extra CPU power. They just spend most of their time waiting.


I generally find 3D games dull and rarely play these. The only exceptions I can think of right now is Stunt Car Racer and No Second Price. Both benefit hugely from a faster CPU. No Second Price in particular is lovely on my MIST in "STEroids" mode.


Both statements are pretty shallow, and surely based on not having enough experience in subject.
There are generally 2 types of 3D games inside polygon graphic based, among Atari ST and Amiga ones:
1. Without waiting, without speed control - speed actually depends only from CPU speed - and that stays for both screen update and game speed.
2. With speed control - normally using V-blank and/or some timer. Then, if screen draw is finished earlier there may be waiting. With faster CPU there will be more frames per second, while game speed remains same.
1st type will have more fps on faster machine, but may become unplayable.
I made lot of CPU slowdown patches for TT, and not only in 3D games, but every what have no proper game speed control.
Famous Schrodinger's cat hypothetical experiment says that cat is dead or alive until we open box and see condition of poor animal, which deserved better logic. Cat is always in some certain state - regardless from is observer able or not to see what the state is.

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Re: Amiga 600 Vampire 2 accelerator board

Postby joska » Tue Oct 18, 2016 6:08 am

AtariZoll wrote:2. With speed control - normally using V-blank and/or some timer. Then, if screen draw is finished earlier there may be waiting. With faster CPU there will be more frames per second, while game speed remains same.


This applies to the two specific games I mentioned. Game speed is not affected, but framerate is.
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Re: Amiga 600 Vampire 2 accelerator board

Postby shoggoth » Tue Oct 18, 2016 11:31 am

calimero wrote:I refer to: no one made DSP in VHDL so far. There is plenty of work and opportunities.
but I was thinking, shoggoth correct me, on Falcon "recreation" in FPGA as main goal (similarly to AGA, SAGA in Vampire).


I think it's pointless to waste energy implementing a DSP on a system where it's not needed. A new machine or accellerator needs a fast CPU, fast memory, and some graphics. It would be great if it could display interleaved planar graphics as well as chunky and truecolor, obviously.

@shoggoth you made software (TOS) part of SuperVidel, right?


I implemented the XBIOS/VDI and NVDI drivers, yes.
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Re: Amiga 600 Vampire 2 accelerator board

Postby calimero » Thu Oct 20, 2016 10:13 am

NEWS from Apollo developer: http://apollo-core.com/knowledge.php?b= ... 3&z=p9D0Q4
(they do not have links to post so search "Gunnar von Boehn" from 18. oktober 2016.)

--- REPRINT -----
"Gunnar von Boehn", one of Apollo authors:

That the Vampire card fit physically well into the ATARI is nice. This means we can provide Vampire to ATARI fans for not that much effort.

Which means that the ATARI fans could get easy access to most compatible 68k FPGA core and the worlds most advanced 68K CPU.

That the original Video logic is very simple in design - could allow us to include it into SAGA for only few days of work.
It might be that Videl and SAGA have a lot in common and that making SAGA look to ATARI like Videl is also very simple.

But this does not mean that we plan to include whole ATARI/FALCON designs now.
We might at some point - but do not hold your breath for this.

So if you want to use the Vampire in ATARI and want to help develop driver etc - we will welcome this.

We are also working on several new hardware cards.
Also we will bring out a Light weight Natami (tm) very soon.
Here the addition of a complete ATARI chipset might make a lot of sense.


someone made video with fitting Vampire 500 to ST:

https://vimeo.com/187388251
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Re: Amiga 600 Vampire 2 accelerator board

Postby AtariZoll » Thu Oct 20, 2016 12:31 pm

Whole Atari ST architecture is based on tight cowork between CPU (8MHz), MMU, RAM, shifter, Glue chip.
Replacing only CPU with faster one will increase speed just little (about 25%). You need cache or faster RAM+logic for more speed up.
That's all solvable more-less complicated, and it was in plenty accelerators. Like Mega STE.
But improving graphic significantly means simply that you can not use almost anything from original chips: need faster RAM, another video chip (shifter), what automatically means that MMU is useless too, and of course Glue will be same.
So, as it is already stated at Atariage - much better is to go on complete new computer design, what may be still ST compatible in one mode, but I guess that it will mean lot of troubles, especially if want cycle accuracy.
Doing it as add-on for some 30 years old ST means lot of troubles with interfacing, levels, speed, unreliable old components which will be barely used.
Even TOS must be patched, if not replaced with something ... multitasking ??? Hmm. But that 68080 is probably not really good for that.
Famous Schrodinger's cat hypothetical experiment says that cat is dead or alive until we open box and see condition of poor animal, which deserved better logic. Cat is always in some certain state - regardless from is observer able or not to see what the state is.

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Re: Amiga 600 Vampire 2 accelerator board

Postby calimero » Thu Oct 20, 2016 6:47 pm

AtariZoll wrote:Whole Atari ST architecture is based on tight cowork between CPU (8MHz), MMU, RAM, shifter, Glue chip.
Replacing only CPU with faster one will increase speed just little (about 25%). You need cache or faster RAM+logic for more speed up.
That's all solvable more-less complicated, and it was in plenty accelerators. Like Mega STE.
But improving graphic significantly means simply that you can not use almost anything from original chips: need faster RAM, another video chip (shifter), what automatically means that MMU is useless too, and of course Glue will be same.

Authors say that they could implemented Shifter pretty fast. Vampire RAM speed is 300MB/s. So you think that "new" Shifter would not be enough for greater resolutions, MMU and Glue also need to be reimplemented in FPGA?

AtariZoll wrote:So, as it is already stated at Atariage - much better is to go on complete new computer design, what may be still ST compatible in one mode, but I guess that it will mean lot of troubles, especially if want cycle accuracy.

Yes, because I said Vampire would be more suitable for Falcon (but then, there is no so much Falcons out there).

AtariZoll wrote:Doing it as add-on for some 30 years old ST means lot of troubles with interfacing, levels, speed, unreliable old components which will be barely used.

Here is Majsta speak about Vampire, idea, motivation, obstacle... you will be able to understand it, for others, there is subtitle:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tNjuulAWntc
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Re: Amiga 600 Vampire 2 accelerator board

Postby GadgetUK164 » Thu Oct 20, 2016 10:38 pm

Whilst this sounds exciting I honestly don't think there will be much benefit beyond say 32Mhz from one of Exxos mods. Unless they stick fast ROM and fast RAM etc on the board. There's a theoretical maximum benefit based on the shifter and the way many games wait for vblank etc as many have posted above - the games for the most part run smoother at 16 and 32 Mhz but you don't get more FPS generally, except in a few 3D games. So that extra horse power will probably do nothing. I am really keen to get one for the 500 or 1200 when they get around to it, but the ST - meh! It would be nice to see a gembench test, maybe TOS / GEM would gain a lot?

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Re: Amiga 600 Vampire 2 accelerator board

Postby AtariZoll » Fri Oct 21, 2016 5:24 am

I will look that Majsta AV later. In meantime I asked some things at their forum:
http://apollo-core.com/knowledge.php?b= ... 3&z=p9D0Q4
And that just confirmed my assumptions. Shortly: compatibility with old SW, written special for some ST, STE, Falcon, TT is not good (for instance no PMMU support). Very clean SW should run, but need first to make proper TOS fixes. They spent 8 years on this CPU. But that makes not usable computer. Whole thing is questionable. Speed is good only in compare to some oldie. Not enough for competing even some smartphone. Probably on Amiga side it is possible to resolve compatibility problems easier. With Atari HW, TOS that may be just another 8 years to get something where can probably run Quake2 or similar thing, but what's the point in that ?
Famous Schrodinger's cat hypothetical experiment says that cat is dead or alive until we open box and see condition of poor animal, which deserved better logic. Cat is always in some certain state - regardless from is observer able or not to see what the state is.

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Re: Amiga 600 Vampire 2 accelerator board

Postby joska » Fri Oct 21, 2016 7:54 am

GadgetUK164 wrote:Whilst this sounds exciting I honestly don't think there will be much benefit beyond say 32Mhz from one of Exxos mods. Unless they stick fast ROM and fast RAM etc on the board


The Vampire has 128Mb of fast RAM, so you can be sure that it's a bit faster than a 32MHz 68000 without fast-RAM ;)
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Re: Amiga 600 Vampire 2 accelerator board

Postby joska » Fri Oct 21, 2016 8:27 am

AtariZoll wrote:And that just confirmed my assumptions. Shortly: compatibility with old SW, written special for some ST, STE, Falcon, TT is not good (for instance no PMMU support). Very clean SW should run, but need first to make proper TOS fixes.


I think *any* answer would have confirmed your assumptions ;) Gunnar's answers looked very promising to me. Lets not scare them off by making unrealistic demands. PMMU would be nice, but not mandatory. 100% of all user software on the Atari works without a PMMU. MiNT - including the 030/040/060 builds - works without a PMMU. If a Vampire ST (or Falcon) ever materialises I would expect other issues, but I would also expect them to be fixed since Gunnar explicitly say that the Apollo core supports ALL CPU instructions.

AtariZoll wrote:They spent 8 years on this CPU. But that makes not usable computer. Whole thing is questionable.


I got the impression that some people find anything else than a standard STE running at 8MHz questionable ;) Don't forget that there are other users out there. I personally could not care less if if I can't run a game from the 80's on a "200MHz" ST. But I would love the fact that I have a "200MHz" ST with the possibility to run GEM-apps in HD resolutions at - relatively speaking - high speeds. I love the speed of my FireBee when I'm developing stuff. But it does not allow me to use Pure Debugger, which a Vampire would.

Of course, we all know that a "200MHz" CPU will break all software that depends on an 8MHz 68000. Nobody would buy a Vampire ST to run Quantum Paint or watch legacy fullscreen demos. You can be quite sure that anyone enthusiastic enough about their ST to spend $$$ on a Vampire will have several machines.

AtariZoll wrote:With Atari HW, TOS that may be just another 8 years to get something where can probably run Quake2 or similar thing, but what's the point in that ?


As I said, with this I could run PureC/AHCC/Interface/qed at really high speeds, really speeding up compilation/debugging and at the same time do it a lot more comfortable with a bigger screen. Now, I know I can do this on an emulator. Or just cross-compile. I'm fully aware of that. But I want dedicated hardware, and I'm willing to pay for it.

There is no need to modify TOS. You can use TOS 2.06 from 1991 and it will work with a Vampire straight away. What you would need are extra drivers for the *additional* features, like larger screens/more colours, or the SD interface.
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Re: Amiga 600 Vampire 2 accelerator board

Postby vido » Fri Oct 21, 2016 9:15 am

joska wrote:Of course, we all know that a "200MHz" CPU will break all software that depends on an 8MHz 68000. Nobody would buy a Vampire ST to run Quantum Paint or watch legacy fullscreen demos. You can be quite sure that anyone enthusiastic enough about their ST to spend $$$ on a Vampire will have several machines.

I dont get one thing, but this is me. I also save strange wishes ;)
But why break compatibility of ST with itself and put such accelerator as Vampire into it (putting 020 accelerator make sense to me) and not wait for standalone Vampire board? Even better would be to develop new one (as FireBee is) with modern interfaces and "expansions" which would work optimal and not like most probably with problems on ST? Not to mention old hardware which makes problems by itself or it will soon do.

OK ... some like to tinker by themself how to solve something and that is their pleasure/hobby. But as an user I wand good and reliable computer ;)

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Re: Amiga 600 Vampire 2 accelerator board

Postby joska » Fri Oct 21, 2016 9:23 am

vido wrote:But why break compatibility of ST with itself and put such accelerator as Vampire into it (putting 020 accelerator make sense to me


The only difference between a Vampire and a 020 accelerator is that the 020 accelerator is a lot slower and less compatible...

vido wrote:...and not wait for standalone Vampire board?


Why not both?

vido wrote:Even better would be to develop new one (as FireBee is) with modern interfaces and "expansions" which would work optimal and not like most probably with problems on ST?


I have years of experience with clones, including the Firebee. There is a reason why I now want an accelerator for the ST/E :)
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Re: Amiga 600 Vampire 2 accelerator board

Postby vido » Fri Oct 21, 2016 9:34 am

joska wrote:
vido wrote:...and not wait for standalone Vampire board?


Why not both?

Actually yes. Why not both?!?
But on the other end, Vamparised ST would not be 100% compatible with standalone, it would need different drivers and it woul diverse Atari community even more. Well, for some people this is good, but as only user I would like compact community with less problems :)

joska wrote:I have years of experience with clones, including the Firebee. There is a reason why I now want an accelerator for the ST/E :)

Me too regarding clones ;)
But I do not want a ST of any kind just because of that :)
I do have MiST :)

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Re: Amiga 600 Vampire 2 accelerator board

Postby AtariZoll » Fri Oct 21, 2016 12:05 pm

Joska, you should read what I asked on their forum.
It sounds very nice when talk that it supports all instructions in range 68000-68060 CPUs. But is there any SW what is using all it ? No. Normal SW will test what CPU is in question and:
1: Will continue because it is made for that CPU
2: Will stop with message, because is not made for that CPU
3: Will set proper mode for actual CPU - what means that will branch on several places and using specific instructions, different stackframe and other things.
In case of Vampire 2 it just may not work - first - the detection of CPU may fail. Then, 68000 SW will fail because different stackframe.
Will it work with TOS 2.06 depends - how CPU detection will be lucky. It may be, I don't know how it exactly detects 68010 - what would be with larger stackframe.

What is unrealistic in idea (it was not demand, only idea) to have settable diverse CPU modes ? That will resolve plenty of possible problems. And no, I don't demand. I just write my opinions based on working on compatibility in hundreds of cases.

"All CPU instructions" and "compatible with all CPUs 68000-68060" by Gunnar and by me is not same thing. As I see he does not consider PMMU instructions as CPU instructions. He does not consider stackframe problems as compatibility problems, because user SW should not deal with that (my guess).

Adding CPU modes would not be so hard. PMMU is very hard indeed. Why they included at all 68030 in CPU list ? When without PMMU it is actually 68020.
And that talk how easy will be to do ST shifter. Come on ...

I looked little that Majsta YT video. He said some very strange things. Probably no sense to go in it. All I can say for now, that no one will watch HD movies with this CPU :D
Famous Schrodinger's cat hypothetical experiment says that cat is dead or alive until we open box and see condition of poor animal, which deserved better logic. Cat is always in some certain state - regardless from is observer able or not to see what the state is.

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Re: Amiga 600 Vampire 2 accelerator board

Postby calimero » Fri Oct 21, 2016 6:19 pm

@ATariZoll
I think it would be enough if Vampire is compatible with yours, dbug and klapauzius hd version of games.
If some 3D games run faster - superb! (on Amiga everybody are fascinating with Frontier but I do not see any other old 3D game that benefit from Vampire; although Doom port works great on Vampire; maybe Rays Wolfenstein 3D would also benefit from Vampire!).

Also, Vampire should be compatible with GEM software and general "productivity" software (except Spectrum 512 and other software that would not anyway benefit from faster CPU). So ST with Vampire (and "SuperShifter" :D) would be more something like FireBee and Aranym (it will break lot of compatibility)!

Why they included at all 68030 in CPU list ?

I do not think that Apollo emulate any particular CPU. Apollo is reimplementation of Motorola 68K ISA in modern way. Amiga and Mac "see" Apollo as 68040 CPU. Aim of Apollo team is to have fastest possible Motorola 68K CPU so eventually you could watch movies on Amiga, browse modern internet with JavaScript... That is the aim of Apollo and Vampire. To modernize Amiga as far as possible, as cheap as possible, and as massive as possible. e.g. there is Amiga X1000 but it is to expensive so to few people own and there is no broad interest from developers to code for it. But with Vampire at 250e and craze speed, maybe there will be some serious new development of modern software.
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Re: Amiga 600 Vampire 2 accelerator board

Postby AtariZoll » Sat Oct 22, 2016 8:23 am

This reminded me on Coldfire and talking about how it will be good for watching DVDs and similar - in times when people went on HD gradually. I don't know what was realized from those ideas, not followed it, but remember that I said that it will be problem, because CPU is most likely not enough fast for it.
Now we have case of Vampire 2 and by me again too high expectations. Indeed, you will be able to watch movies, but in what quality, what codecs ?
Latest x256/HEVC is very demanding by playback (encoding even more) - even some 64-bit 2.7 GHz, dual core is not enough for full HD flawless playback. Vampire 2 will be weak even for DVD, that's what I see. Maybe something of future versions ...

Back to our business, Atari SW: no way that my hard disk adapts will work with it without lot of changes, and most likely same stays for Klapauzius, D-Bug ones too.
1. PMMU is used a lot in HAGA, and since it will be used always when non 68000, so 68030 mode is set it will fail. But even older releases use little PMMU code to move table on better place than it is normally by TOS 3/4 it will be problem.
2. Solution would be to remain is ST(E) mode, but then stackframe will be problem.
3. Speed: most of SW will not work normally or at all at so high CPU speed. What will work will be mostly unplayable fast. There will be plenty of flickering in many 3D games (FS2 flickers already on 16 MHz CPU). Only chance is turtle mode, or better to just switch back to org. CPU - but ! They won't to keep it in machine :o

Indeed, it will be like Firebee, but not new machine, just upgrade, what is just not good idea by me.

After watchin' that Majsta presentation I see little better their aims, what is motivation behind all this, and must say see lot of mistakes in judging.
Funny thing was that majsta talked about some normal things like DMA as he invented it - when talked about how reading from CF into RAM is invisible for core - that's is for me pretty discutable PR score hunting. He has very bad opinion about today mainstream computer manufacturing, but that's gone too far and emotional. Amiga is something best what human brain invented, so must be kept alive, furthermore he talked about Amiga based smartphones and like ... Here most put us back on ground:
Motorola, IBM, Apple are not idiots. They abandoned 68000 line with reason. They spent millions if not billions in development of new CPU designs, so how to expect that some small team will develop almost without money something competitive.

Not good idea to advertise something what is basically faster, hacked 68040 as compatible with 68000-68060 line. We all know that they are compatible at some level. But Vampire 2 is actually not 100% compatible even with 68040 - according to what Gunnar said - they changed behavior of reading SR in user mode. PMMU is omitted or changed - another incompatibility.
Finally, they rushed with those claims for what it may be good, after really limited tests, I guess only on Amiga boards.
Famous Schrodinger's cat hypothetical experiment says that cat is dead or alive until we open box and see condition of poor animal, which deserved better logic. Cat is always in some certain state - regardless from is observer able or not to see what the state is.

joska
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Re: Amiga 600 Vampire 2 accelerator board

Postby joska » Sat Oct 22, 2016 9:46 am

AtariZoll wrote:Joska, you should read what I asked on their forum.
It sounds very nice when talk that it supports all instructions in range 68000-68060 CPUs. But is there any SW what is using all it ? No. Normal SW will test what CPU is in question and:


We are looking at this from two very different perspectives. You from a hacker/gamefixer/player point of view. From that point of view I see your concern. However, I don't see the point in buying a Vampire for that sort of use.

From my point of view I see a very fast CPU with all 68000 instructions. Perfect to run the GEM applications I use very quickly with a lot of RAM. Normal apps does not care about CPU type and does not have to worry about stackframes.
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