Comparing MSX-1 to other 8-bit computers

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By Thorham

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03-08-2009, 19:09

And what about the Sinclair QL? It has a 68008 CPU and was launched in 1984. Really retro thing.Hi, I'm new here, but I feel I must set this straight

The 68008 is not an 8 bit cpu. Sure, it has an 8 bit data bus, but it has a 32 bit instruction set, just like the 68000 (16 bit data bus, 24 bit address bus, 32 bit instruction set). All members of the 68k family have a 32 bit instruction set. This technically makes both the 68000 and 68008 32 bit cpus.

Hope I'm not sounding like a know it all.

By Nekto

Resident (40)

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20-08-2009, 13:08

It's very sad that SMS had no keyboard.

By Totta

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17-10-2009, 18:53


Having said that: Most of the games that are exclusive to the C64, are balls.

Really?
Ever taken a look at Wizball, Last Ninja or some of the 10.000 of exclusive C64 games there is?


While the MSX might have block character scrolling as opposed to pixel based like the C64, the MSX games still play/look better. Many C64 games suffer from it's dopey color palette.

And I thought it was the MSX that never had a skin color in it's palette.


Many games on the MSX are simply impossible on a C64. Look at Gryzor, R-Type, and Nemesis for the C64, and you will clearly see that it is just a bad idea.

Ever heard of a small game called Salamander?
Please don't tell me you think this is bad?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-v_qF3zBPFQ


If the C64 didn't have the SID chip in it, I honestly don't think it would be the demo machine of choice. Lol, it'd be just a fart in the wind!

Please, as much as I love the MSX myself, please stop lying to yourself. Have you ever seen a C64-demo in your life?

By JohnHassink

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17-10-2009, 19:26

@ Totta:
Wow, I'm impressed by the looks of the C64 Salamander. Smile
Too bad it does not scroll in multiple directions within stages, but the overall look is great!
Looks a bit like the NES version to me.

About skin color on MSX1; I think they mainly used color 9 for that (caucasian, 'white' folks, ofcourse Wink), which is okay.
For instance, check this picture:
http://www.generation-msx.nl/msxdb/image&type=screenshot&imagetype=game&msxid=838

(in case you're wondering, it's from Telenet Japan's "Final Zone Wolf")

P.S. ofcourse, color 10 & 11 were also used now and then:

http://www.generation-msx.nl/msxdb/image&type=screenshot&imagetype=game&msxid=731

(from this game: http://www.generation-msx.nl/msxdb/softwareinfo/731)

By JohnHassink

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17-10-2009, 20:26

Excuse me for screwing up the last link, here is the correct one:
http://www.generation-msx.nl/msxdb/softwareinfo/731

By Yukio

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17-10-2009, 21:29

Not to sound blasphemous or anything, but I think ZX Spectrum 48 and 128 technology was way more practical, with uber-cheap approach to components, direct videoram access and huge mass appeal. It was like an economy Opel or Renault, and MSX was more like Mersedes Betz C-series or BMW 5 Smile

The ZX Spectrum is not faster than the MSX, also the original ZX Spectrum never had VRAM! Only some foreign clones that use dedicated memory for Video. On MSX the thing that some persons believed that was a problem is the delay to output the information to the VRAM of the VDP, but the MSX has hardware sprites!

I think that the ZX Spectrum like the MSX do not implement Direct Access to the Memory ...

By Yukio

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17-10-2009, 21:29

MSX x NES: very relevant IMHO. Both were popular computers during the eighties. NES was originally released in July 1983; when were the first MSX1s sold? Were the periods between deciding the technical specifications and releasing to market longer for MSX1 perhaps? I don't think you can say NES came much later.


It was the same company (Gradiente) that sold Atari 2600 VCS, MSX and much later the NES and SNES on Brasil ... The official NES was released on the same time period that the SNES, there was some unofficial clones before ...

By Yukio

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17-10-2009, 21:39

I've got one question for you: do you consider the V9938 a 8-bit or a 16-bit video processor? I know that it only uses a maximum colour depth of 8 bits (256 colours), but most of the instructions executed by this processor are longer than one byte. But it is the *main* difference between an MSX and an MSX2.

Does this change the idea of "8-bit computer"? For example, a Sega Genesis/MegaDrive has a Z80 for sound, just like NEO·GEO IIRC, but of course they are Motorola 68000 based, making thus 16-bit machines.

The problem is that the sound is still 8-bit RAW samples for both machines! Only the CD-ROM versions (SEGA CD and NEO-GEO CD) that output 16-bit Digital Audio for the sound tracks. Sure, their possess better FM synthesis to compensate for the 8-bit quality raw samples!

The colour count and resolution is not much higher either ... Less than 255 colours (8-bit colour depth) in most cases!

The SEGA Mega Drive.
Apart from this, there is the legacy mode that can play most of the SEGA Master System library. It is more a evolution than a new machine. If you take into account hybrid machines like this, maybe someone could count the MSX Turbo R either ...

By Yukio

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17-10-2009, 21:50

And what about the Sinclair QL? It has a 68008 CPU and was launched in 1984. Really retro thing.

Of course, it is time for a what-if. What if MSX2 were produced using its VDP but with a 680XX CPU? It would have beaten Atari ST for sure, and such a beast could almost compete with Amiga.

only with faster vram and direct cpu access. otherwise, no!
Plus the amiga had the most superior hw ever seen on a 16 bit machine.

Are you sure? The Amiga has a lot of nice games, but there are better games on the Sharp X68000 and on the SNK Neo-Geo ...

Anyway, this threat is about the discussion of the 8-bit machines. Not upper weight 16-bit machines! Even if their only use (most of the time) 8-bit sound samplers.

By Yukio

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17-10-2009, 22:03

..and they live hidden away from civilization in the Amazon rain forest or what?

Nooo ... It was only the "*Manaus FREE TRADING ZONE*" (Zona Franca de Manaus) that is on Amazon. It was the place that the MSX boxes came from ...

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