Author Topic: Inicron RAM Expansion and Dk'Tronics Compatibility  (Read 2264 times)

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Offline Badstarr

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Ok so for my upcoming Plus/GX4000 project I have decided to build a 512k Inicron expansion but integrate it into the CPC. Now the issue is that it's not fully Dk'Tronics compatible, this was not too big an issue as I had (some time ago) found some information on how this could be corrected on Yarek's website, however, the links to the information seem to be dead. Does anyone know if this information is held somewhere else, or know what IC's etc I need to add? It would be a shame to waste the RAM ICs I just bought!
Proud owner of 464 GTM64 6128 GTM65, GX4128 and a 464/6128 Plus Hybrid a 20 year long ambition realised! :-)

Offline TFM

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Re: Inicron RAM Expansion and Dk'Tronics Compatibility
« Reply #1 on: 18:23, 20 June 12 »
It may help you to ask the inicron.de themselves. On the other hand most of the software (including RDOS - the RAM disc, FutureOS f.e. ...) is running with it.
TFM of FutureSoft
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Offline Badstarr

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Re: Inicron RAM Expansion and Dk'Tronics Compatibility
« Reply #2 on: 04:41, 22 June 12 »
Thanks TFM/FS, I almost forgot I posted about this lol! So the Inicron 512k RAM is working happily with FutureOS etc? If that's the case I will be happy enough with this expansion built into my upcoming 464/GX project. I suppose I can modify it in the future should I run into problems. So... my Amstrad CPC 6512GX will soon be a reality! Yay!
Proud owner of 464 GTM64 6128 GTM65, GX4128 and a 464/6128 Plus Hybrid a 20 year long ambition realised! :-)

Offline TFM

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Re: Inicron RAM Expansion and Dk'Tronics Compatibility
« Reply #3 on: 19:24, 22 June 12 »
And with the Inicron RAM expansion you can also switch between the second block of 64 KB expansion RAM if you have a 128 KB system (w/o ram expansion). Which give actually 640 KB ;-)
 
However, also a SF2 could be an idea, since if's not much bigger.
 
Well, if you like to work with RAM discs, then the Inicron offers S-RAM, means you can switch your CPC off, and then content is save, because it's battery buffered (in contrast to all other RAM expansions etc.).
 
If I was not able to explain thing clearly let me know :-)))
TFM of FutureSoft
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Offline Badstarr

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Re: Inicron RAM Expansion and Dk'Tronics Compatibility
« Reply #4 on: 20:55, 22 June 12 »
All well explained TFM/FS, the reason why the Inicron RAM solution appealed to me is precisely for the reason you pointed out, that it can also use the onboard 2nd 64k of RAM. I will be installing 128k on the GX4000 main board however, if a 512k expansion overrides the 2nd 64k then it makes it a little pointless. As most existing software will be more than happy with a standard 128k memory scheme having the standard 128k solution ensures a good level of compatibility.


Also the RAM disk possibilities are intriguing and fit well with my concept of an Uber CPC as Hard Disk implementation as it currently stands, is, while possible, a bit of a headache when dealing with Amsdos software. With a built in MegaFlash and 512k of potential RAM disk space I think all the bases are covered.


One day I may choose to install 4Mb RAM, but it seems a little overkill right now. But I do like the possibilities that large memory creates in terms of full motion video etc (and I know that a large amount of MBs of RAM is something that you yourself would like to see being installed in CPCs).  :)   
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Offline TFM

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Re: Inicron RAM Expansion and Dk'Tronics Compatibility
« Reply #5 on: 23:39, 22 June 12 »
So you will have one of the few real disc-less stations. You can have your software in ROMs and your files on the 444 KB RAM disc C. You even can boot CP/M from RAM drive C (that's what my 6128 can do... or did when I saw him the last time).
Boiled down to a nutshell. Your system will be far superior to a PC  ;D
4 MB is a gain, but it must not be in this machine :-) and I guess only very few app. are demanding more than 512 KB exp. memory. (Well, I know only two...). So 512 KB is really fine, because it's RAM buffered. (Else I would suggest indeed 4 MB like you pointed it out.
 
The possibility to switch the first 64 KB of the expansion memory between the CPC and the save buffered RAM expansion open additional possibilities. Not only hacking or using bankman ??? , you pretty much can store everything there and then switch back the the CPCs memory. Later when you need it switch back to the buffered 64 KB of the RAM-card. Oh, btw. the extended RDOS has some commands for using that extra RAM (see inicoron homepage, else I have to dig my DSKs ;)
 
TFM of FutureSoft
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Offline Badstarr

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Re: Inicron RAM Expansion and Dk'Tronics Compatibility
« Reply #6 on: 11:34, 27 June 12 »
This is what I like about pushing the boundaries of the original CPC/Plus design! As you have pointed out, there are tricks that can be done with that 64k bank that I hadn't really considered. I will check out the RDOS extensions and get some ideas of what's possible.


I think should be able to commence work on this project at some point today, I've just finished a night shift so I will be getting some sleep in soon before I go anywhere near a soldering iron  :laugh: . I will be working out how to fit everything into the 464 case in a sensible and hopefully attractive way first. The great thing is that that the GX4000 mainboard is very compact so I should have plenty of space to play with inside the 464 case. I want everything to be neat and tidy and also modular, so that hardware can be repaired/upgraded reasonably easily.


I'm thinking that the slimline floppy disk drive will be installed to the left of the cassette unit and an SD card slot for the HxC in front of the cassette unit, possibly a second one for the Printer Port based SD Mass storage solution that was posted on the wiki forums recently. I think/hope this will be a very powerful flexible machine when it's done!
Proud owner of 464 GTM64 6128 GTM65, GX4128 and a 464/6128 Plus Hybrid a 20 year long ambition realised! :-)