Comparing MSX-1 to other 8-bit computers

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By [D-Tail]

Ascended (8232)

[D-Tail]'s picture

31-12-2008, 11:49

Sure... RAM: 2x 128kB -- that's half for RAM, Philips marketing idiots! And "User friendliness", objective term, to say the least, har har har...

By Hrothgar

Champion (479)

Hrothgar's picture

31-12-2008, 12:33

VRAM you mean? But wasn't that the same for other systems (VRAM as part of normal RAM)? Still a fair comparison in that case.

For user friendliness perhaps they were referring to programming in Basic. I've heard doing graphics and sound in C64 Basic was quite a challenge. But that improved in the C128, according to Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Commodore_BASIC#Versions_and_features).

By Arkhan

Champion (259)

Arkhan's picture

31-12-2008, 20:40

graphics were fun/easy in C64 BASIC but sound..........ehhhhhhhhhhhhh not so fun/easy.....

By MäSäXi

Paragon (1884)

MäSäXi's picture

01-01-2009, 11:31

both graphics and sound are as hard to do with Commodore 64. Thought with some practise, or should I say, when you get USED to it..... then it may be "ok". Smile

Graphics are easy to make, if you are referring just to ordinary text/petscii characters with different colours.

But, just try to do something as simple as this MSX-BASIC program:

10 color,1,1:screen2
20 a%=int(rnd(1)*255):b%=int(rnd(1)*255):c%=int(rnd(1)*14+1):line-(a%,b%),c%
30 goto 20

or check how many commands and lines you have to use to make this:

10screen2:sprite$(0)=chr$(255)
20 putsprite0,(x%,100),15,0: x%=x%+1:goto20

You can see very soon, how EASY and COMFORTABLE it is to have BASIC commands like SCREEN. Wink

Or try to make your own characters using Commodore 64 BASIC.... Tongue It is not hard, when you know what to do, but thinking all the things you have to do for such simple thing.......

By MäSäXi

Paragon (1884)

MäSäXi's picture

01-01-2009, 11:44

by the way.... HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!! Smile

By alexworp3

Expert (126)

alexworp3's picture

01-01-2009, 15:27

First best wishes for 2009.LOL!

second i just downloaded a c64 emulator with a few demos.
i have to admit: the cid chip is one of a kind and un beatable by any other computer of its era.
But if i look at the demos (Which look recent to me)they look straightforward and not the entertaininglevel of the recent msx(2)(+)(TR) demos. But offcource i must be mistaken.
By the way i tried to program a c64 in basic in my younger years, and it was terrifying.

By Arkhan

Champion (259)

Arkhan's picture

01-01-2009, 19:00

both graphics and sound are as hard to do with Commodore 64. Thought with some practise, or should I say, when you get USED to it..... then it may be "ok". Smile

Graphics are easy to make, if you are referring just to ordinary text/petscii characters with different colours.

But, just try to do something as simple as this MSX-BASIC program:

10 color,1,1:screen2
20 a%=int(rnd(1)*255):b%=int(rnd(1)*255):c%=int(rnd(1)*14+1):line-(a%,b%),c%
30 goto 20

or check how many commands and lines you have to use to make this:

10screen2:sprite$(0)=chr$(255)
20 putsprite0,(x%,100),15,0: x%=x%+1:goto20

You can see very soon, how EASY and COMFORTABLE it is to have BASIC commands like SCREEN. Wink

Or try to make your own characters using Commodore 64 BASIC.... Tongue It is not hard, when you know what to do, but thinking all the things you have to do for such simple thing.......

Its still easy to do... time consuming, inefficient, and better on MSX for sure though. Smile

i have to admit: the cid chip is one of a kind and un beatable by any other computer of its era.
But if i look at the demos (Which look recent to me)they look straightforward and not the entertaininglevel of the recent msx(2)(+)(TR) demos. But offcource i must be mistaken.
By the way i tried to program a c64 in basic in my younger years, and it was terrifying.

Programming on the c64 is very jacked.I don't advise it in 2009(!). Disk swaps, funky stuff to deal with... if you dont have the Programmers Reference guide, you are boned

the only demos I enjoyed on the C64 were by Cosine. the rest were met with a "big f***in deal" from me. That invasion of the big pixels MSX1 demo was more impressive by far...

The SID is definitley unique... but that's what happens when you have a 3 voice subtractive synth like chip in the computer! :-D it's like a Roland SH101 for computers .

Too bad they made working with it a complete pain in the ass. All them trackers for C64 are the definition of unintuitive.

By MäSäXi

Paragon (1884)

MäSäXi's picture

02-01-2009, 11:24

As I choosed MSX instead of Commodore 64, because MSX´s far better BASIC, even I lost my chance to hundreds of free pirated cassette games, many times in later years I have wondered, what if I could have been clever (?) enough to forget MSX and ask my daddy to buy Commodore 64 WITH Simon´s Basic cartridge?

Could that Simon´s cartridge had been good enough to make me happy with Commodore 64? I still remember, that my pal had Simon´s Basic cartridge copied to tape, but there was no use for it for me, because how I can use it´s commands without manuals?!

Is here anyone ex-Commodore 64´er who has really used Simon´s Basic?

Maybe I can ask this someday from some Commodore 64 forum, but I like to ask it here first. As there is such a problem, that how can Commodorist compare is their Simon´s Basic better or worse than MSX-BASIC, as probably they have used Commodore 64 only. Of course someone probably has tried MSX-BASIC, but you surely understand my problem. Smile

By MäSäXi

Paragon (1884)

MäSäXi's picture

02-01-2009, 11:33

by the way, since SID has different sounds on different Commodore 64s (a bit same thing on Spectravideo 728s.....but cannot be compared to SID differences, as on Spectravideo 728 difference is mainly in TONE, but on different SIDs certain sound can be completely different), I just want to say, that when you listen SID music, you may NOT hear it how it was meant to be heared.

I am a bit frustrated, as on PC´s SIDplay player ,my favourite SID game tunes do not sound at all like they sounded in those Commodore 64s which I have used since eighties.... many important parts of tune are completely missing, or barely hearable..... I know that part of the problem is with emulation and speakers, but still.....

That is somewhat a problem, if someone suggests converting particular Commodore 64 game to MSX, and MSX musician can´t hear original tune correctly..... Eek! and then MSX arrangement misses some vital part of melody..... Sad

By PingPong

Prophet (3339)

PingPong's picture

02-01-2009, 13:17


Could that Simon´s cartridge had been good enough to make me happy with Commodore 64?


we are going ot, however on this link you can download the SB reference manual.
It's similar to msx-basic, power wise, but adds some constructs for structured programming like LOCAL or GLOBAL variables, or structured loops. However it's still more like older basic interpreters with horrid line numbers.....
the renum command does not take in account line numbers specified as arguments of a branch instruction.

http://retrocomputing.altervista.org/scansioni/scansioni.html

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