Some Issues. Some questions. - Panasonic MSX2+, floppy drive, some oddities

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By ckrtech

Resident (33)

ckrtech's picture

18-11-2017, 00:47

Hey guys - Running a Panasonic WSX system. Default 64k RAM. Replaced the floppy drive with a PC drive around 2009. Haven't used it as much as I should have!

Decided to try out some DSK images just to revive my interest a bit. I realized quickly that the 64k RAM in the machine is limiting - especially running a ROM file from a floppy - but I had some interesting goings-on with some of the DSK images I wrote to some DD (and taped over HD) disks and had a go. Couple of odd things -

1: I can't seem to get into BASIC on the system now. The drive light stays lit, but the motor doesn't spin. My thoughts are perhaps the various switching of FDs has made the system think there is a disk in there when there isn't. If that is the case, I'll have to pop the hood and give it a jiggle. Otherwise - any ideas? Also - Is there a possible keypress I can use to bypass reading the floppy when loading BASIC? (Booting MSX-DOS from a floppy and then typing "BASIC" makes everyone happy & BASIC loads)

2: Undeadline loaded, but the graphics are somewhat corrupt in the status bar & the character could only fire (no movement). I tried without the joystick - same story. DSK image seemed to work ok in blueMSX. Perhaps I will write another floppy for a possible workaround from a bad disk, but I am wondering about the movement problem.

3: Mon Mon Monster - I am using a trainer version of it that asks from the start if you want unlimited lives. In the emulator, I can answer "N" (or "S") for either. However after loading on the MSX, it recognizes keyboard presses but doesn't actually write the letter to the screen.

A couple of software-ish issues there, but I am wondering about that odd joystick behavior with Undeadline as well as what the deal is with Mon Mon Monsters' training screen.

I've put the RAM upgrade(s) on the backburner for a long time. Maybe I should get some ready to rock if (when) I pop the top to double check the floppy drive.

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By Grauw

Enlighted (6368)

Grauw's picture

18-11-2017, 12:04

That WSX is a nice system Smile. The best MSX2+ if you ask me. Someday I’d like to get one.

If you try any Japanese game which was originally available on disk, like Xak, Fray, Ys, Aleste, etc. they should work fine on 64K. But, more RAM is never a bad thing Smile.

I think it has a firmware slider switch on the front panel, is it turned off? It almost sounds like there are some issues with the BIOS ROMs, but then it’s strange that it is working at all, so probably it’s something else… You could dump ’em and compare with some found online to make sure.

Quote:

Also - Is there a possible keypress I can use to bypass reading the floppy when loading BASIC? (Booting MSX-DOS from a floppy and then typing "BASIC" makes everyone happy & BASIC loads)

Keep SHIFT pressed until the beep to skip the disk drive.

So if you are in DOS and Basic, the keyboard works fine? Also Basic works fine? That more or less confirms that the ROMs are fine.

By Jipe

Paragon (1269)

Jipe's picture

18-11-2017, 12:19

Quote:

Replaced the floppy drive with a PC drive around 2009. Haven't used it as much as I should have!

many pc drive are not compatible with MSX
then insert a formated disk you start basic
try this scheme : http://msx.hansotten.com/uploads/images/pctomsx.gif

By gdx

Paragon (1684)

gdx's picture

18-11-2017, 12:56

Original floppy drive is robust. Very often it is enough to change the belt so that it works again.

"ckrtech" wrote:

I've put the RAM upgrade(s) on the backburner for a long time.

Now do you have 256k internally?

By jltursan

Prophet (2079)

jltursan's picture

19-11-2017, 09:35

Quote:

2: Undeadline loaded, but the graphics are somewhat corrupt in the status bar & the character could only fire (no movement). I tried without the joystick - same story. DSK image seemed to work ok in blueMSX. Perhaps I will write another floppy for a possible workaround from a bad disk, but I am wondering about the movement problem.

I've faced the same problem recently, try again with different dsk images. I was able to find one that works flawlessly.

By ckrtech

Resident (33)

ckrtech's picture

19-11-2017, 10:45

Grauw wrote:

That WSX is a nice system Smile. The best MSX2+ if you ask me. Someday I’d like to get one.

Smile Thanks. The FS-A1 was my first. I picked up the WSX not too long after getting the FS-A1. It was recommended here, and I got a good deal on it.

Grauw wrote:
Quote:

Also - Is there a possible keypress I can use to bypass reading the floppy when loading BASIC? (Booting MSX-DOS from a floppy and then typing "BASIC" makes everyone happy & BASIC loads)

Keep SHIFT pressed until the beep to skip the disk drive.

Ahh thank you. That worked.

Jipe wrote:

many pc drive are not compatible with MSX

Hey Jipe. Well, it seems like most of the disk games I have tried work OK - Aleste 2, Aleste Gaiden, an MSX-DOS boot disk I created with a rom loader program, etc. When I made the modification, I believe I had to do something tricky with the disk change/ready lines. Perhaps one has lost connection or something after multiple ejects over time.

gdx wrote:

Now do you have 256k internally?

Not yet. Sorry. I meant to say that it is something I plan to do but have not done yet. I will probably get 4 DIPs, mod for 256k first, and then do the extra mod work to get 512k. I am pretty comfortable with a soldering iron.

Maybe I will open it up and check the floppy wiring, upgrade to 512k, and add a csync/LM1881 circuit (for RGB) while I am at it.

jltursan wrote:

I've faced the same problem recently, try again with different dsk images. I was able to find one that works flawlessly.

Oh good! Glad to know that it seems like a dsk issue and not a machine issue of some sort.

By Manuel

Ascended (13538)

Manuel's picture

19-11-2017, 12:03

As far as I know that machine already has RGB.... Probably an 8 pin din connector.

By Meits

Scribe (4607)

Meits's picture

19-11-2017, 12:31

Manuel wrote:

As far as I know that machine already has RGB.... Probably an 8 pin din connector.

That's confirmed.

By gdx

Paragon (1684)

gdx's picture

19-11-2017, 13:58

ckrtech wrote:

Not yet. Sorry. I meant to say that it is something I plan to do but have not done yet. I will probably get 4 DIPs, mod for 256k first, and then do the extra mod work to get 512k. I am pretty comfortable with a soldering iron.

In this case do not hesitate to do the upgrade to 256kB. It's easy and cheap.

http://www.msxarchive.nl/pub/msx/docs/hwmodsetc/msxa1wsxmemo...
https://www.ebay.com/itm/1PCS-M5M44256BP-10-DIP20-IC/2226265...
https://www.ebay.com/itm/Double-Row-2-54mm-20-Pin-DIP-IC-Soc...

By ckrtech

Resident (33)

ckrtech's picture

20-11-2017, 04:28

Regarding RGB - It does support RGB out on the 8 pin din connector, however the composite sync signal is 1 volt. I need a slightly more TTL-friendly sync signal pulse, so my plan was to put an LM1881 in the system and use the unused pin to provide that signal.

By Manuel

Ascended (13538)

Manuel's picture

20-11-2017, 07:10

Hmm, never heard of someone needing that...

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