How much RAM is really needed in an MSX 2 ?

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By PingPong

Prophet (3760)

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19-08-2008, 21:44

8KB is enough

By wolf_

Ambassador_ (9892)

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19-08-2008, 22:25

Depends on the game and the size of the game on the medium.

By Arjan

Paladin (742)

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20-08-2008, 12:25

For European games, 128kB is enough in all cases except for Micro Mirror Man (which wasn't finished anyways) which required 256kB RAM, and if I remember correctly, Tetris II by RAM also requires 256kB RAM. Unknown Reality also requires 256kB RAM. Don't know if there are any more titles that require more than 128kB RAM. Some games require 256kB RAM if played from HD (e.g. Pumpkin Adventure). So, for legal games 256kB is as much as you really need to run all MSX software.

By Yukio

Paragon (1540)

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20-08-2008, 17:41

One of the few application that would require Memory Mapper is GEM. Since for use GEM the software need to have extra (additional) memory to load the 128KB or 256KB games and demonstration from other machines.This even can use 512KB or 1024KB Memory Mapper ...

It is the only thing that I remember that would need more than just 512KB RAM!!!

By dhau

Paragon (1570)

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21-08-2008, 03:28

Well, I'm sure GEM user community is well supplied with memory, both two of them.

By jltursan

Prophet (2541)

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21-08-2008, 10:46

It is the only thing that I remember that would need more than just 512KB RAM!!!

Don't forget SymbOS, although it doesn't really needs a 1024KB mapper, it could be very useful (specially if you have a standard 128KB machine).

By wolf_

Ambassador_ (9892)

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21-08-2008, 11:46

The thing with games is that you can't have oodles o' code at once in memory as your Z80 couldn't cope with it anyway. The smaller the code, the more often the Z80 can run it. In a way it may be the same with maps, if there's some kind of pathfinding involved: the smaller the map, the faster the pathfinding. What's left is the media: music, graphics. If you'd have 2 -big- Moonsound tunes in memory it'd be about 32KB already, add a player, add some frequency tables and the memory piles up. Graphics idem, if you store some anims and/or game graphics bitbusted or pletted in RAM, then this may also pile up quite well. So, media adds to memory usage. Question is: how much media is present in games and how much could be present in games?

In a demo like Sphere the memory equals the amount of frames, where each KB could be like 3..6 frames, so there memory does count.

By Yukio

Paragon (1540)

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21-08-2008, 12:43

The minimum specification for MSX2 seems to be like 64KB Main RAM. The graphics are stored into the Video RAM, since it is a dedicated area it should not be a problem for the general applications.The same could be true about sound applications, since even the old Music Module has a small RAM area for samples. Since graphics and sound samples are stored into dedicated RAM chips this does not reflect the real use in the main ram. Even the MSX-DOS2 cartridge from ASCII Corp. has dedicated Memory Mapper (256KB RAM) that would be enough for most applications, a typical European MSX with 128 KB Main RAM plus 128 KB VRAM would be great with the addiction of a DOS2 cartridge with additional 256 KB RAM ... 384 KB Main RAM (Memory Mapper) + 128KB VRAM is enough to play most softwares on the market!

By nikodr

Paladin (747)

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28-08-2008, 13:15

One question that i have is why cracked games like vampire killer had no sound in 128k ram while it had sound effects.What caused the absence of sound?

By experimenting with bluemsx i noticed that there are various strange glitches to find in games that require certain amount of vram.Eg lower vram from 128k to 64 and Metal Gear 2 radar does not work at all,and some glitches appear.

I think though that the official specification of MSX2 machines was 64kbytes of ram,although in theory we could create a machine with fewer than that.

Most Konami games that run from cartridge require no more than 16kbytes of ram,and many only run fine with 8kbytes.

I assume it would be easy to upgrade an msx1 machine to msx2 -(upgrade bios,vdp,diskrom etc)- but not upgrade the ram,wouldn't then be an msx2 machine with fewer than 64kbytes of ram?

Would this be an msx2 machine?

By msd

Paragon (1461)

msd의 아바타

28-08-2008, 13:38

Not so easy to upgrade from msx1 to msx2.

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