Imagine being able to use a Raspberry PI not only for SD card programs, but also for real cartridges!. Victor Trucco has put this into practice, based on Meeso Kim's work.

The project is in an early stage, emulations still have to be adapted to the new hardware, but games of the first MSX generation already run with some slowdowns but without other big problems. BlueberryMSX, a ported BlueMSX by known MRC member uberjack supports the new extension so far, we hope for soon integration of openMSX.

All in all one of the most useful extensions for the RasPi, for MSX minded, and very much crime for future developments! The board, which is based on the GPIO of the RasPi, can be ordered directly from Victor, who lives in Brazil. The cost for a single interface is €45,00. For shipments to Europe a collective order is being prepared and will be handled by experienced importer Luppie.

So please share if you are interested in buying a slot board! Contact Victor Trucco on Twitter or via his homepage.

Relevant Links: MSXPiHat Image made available by Matheus Santos.

Group order MSX-Pi extension board to Europe.

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Comments (58)

By Giangiacomo Zaffini 2

Master (167)

Giangiacomo Zaffini 2's picture

29-12-2018, 01:27

I've just read the news and I'm interested in buying a slot board. Tongue

By psxdev

Rookie (29)

psxdev's picture

29-12-2018, 13:42

I made a little demo using the original pcb from meesokim design in last MSX RU in Sevilla last october showing a MSX2 cartridge (Vampire Killer/Castlevania) up and running on pi no modification was needed in code, also my FMSX port for PlayStation 4 was presented.

Please if you change code or hardware design publish it and leave it open. This should be always an open source/hardware project.

By DrWh0

Paladin (768)

DrWh0's picture

29-12-2018, 13:36

@psxdev is right I had in my hands a few units in the Ru05 at Seville and we tested a cartridge in the conference, you can check at:

http://www.ler-sor.es/blog/cronica-ru05-de-sevilla/

(select english in the US flag at right top)

Also I recorded some tests of it on my youtube channel

This is another project renamed and sold as different product :(

One of the photos I took:

By hamlet

Scribe (2626)

hamlet's picture

29-12-2018, 14:23

Quote:

This is another project renamed and sold as different product Sad

My information is that Meeso Kim is the inventor of the board, as I mentioned in the news post. Please correct me if I'm wrong. As I'm known for late news post, this item was hangin' around at my home the last two months. I wasn't able to spend the time it deserves to test. I asked Meeso Kim this summer if he wanted to distribute the board, which he denied.
User mygodess did report about a ZemixMini.


Have a look at this tweet.

By djh1697

Paragon (1410)

djh1697's picture

29-12-2018, 14:12

Will the BlueberryMSX support i/o cards, i.e.Sunrise IDE, MegaflashROM, or Carnivore2? That would be really cool Wink

By hamlet

Scribe (2626)

hamlet's picture

29-12-2018, 14:19

Quote:

Will the BlueberryMSX support i/o cards, i.e.Sunrise IDE, MegaflashROM, or Carnivore2? That would be really cool

As mentioned, this project is just in the beginning. We hope for both support, BlueberryMSX and OpenMSX. A real MSX substitute should support those hardware extensions for sure. Of course a Pi could just emulate the boards, but cartridge slots are one thing that makes an MSX (the DIN tape connector is the other thing Wink ).

By psxdev

Rookie (29)

psxdev's picture

29-12-2018, 14:32

hamlet wrote:
Quote:

This is another project renamed and sold as different product Sad

My information is that Meeso Kim is the inventor of the board, as I mentioned in the news post. Please correct me if I'm wrong. As I'm known for late news post, this item was hangin' around at my home the last two months. I wasn't able to spend the time it deserves to test. I asked Meeso Kim this summer if he wanted to distribute the board, which he denied.
User mygodess did report about a ZemixMini.


Have a look at this tweet.

Right meesokim is the author of hardware design and the source code modification for both openmsx and blueberrry and he did it in an open way, so i ask for people who are making changes to his job that they should make the same and do it in an open hardware/source way.

By meeso.kim

Supporter (15)

meeso.kim's picture

29-12-2018, 16:50

Hi, All.

It's meesokim's writing.
I've almost done for read/write for real MSX cartridge. It's time to make more realistic case.
I recommend you use my recent work for RPMC schematic and blueberryMSX modification on my github.

http://www.github.com/meesokim/msx-cartridge
http://www.github.com/meesokim/blueberryMSX

BlueberryMSX is more flexible environment for Raspberry Pi than OpenMSX.
Also I improved many features of BlueberryMSX.
- Scanlines for LCD monitor.
- 4:3 screen ratio for 16:9 display.
- Shortcut Keys profile same to PC version.
- MIDI port output support (by using Software MIDI like timidity)
- PNG Screen shot by pressing F6.
- interal SCC sound enabled for ROM cartridge
- USB floppy disk support (/dev/sda or /dev/sdb)

Recently I've started to make a frontend based on pygame.
It's similar to Groovy Arcade.
I'd like to do something with you to improve MSX experience for Raspberry Pi based MSX machine.

* Zemmix mini is a remake commercial project with this RPMC board schematics.
It is a very limited edition based on official license from Zemmix TM holding company.
MSX is not directly related to this product.

Everyone can make their own product but it has to be open hardware schematics for better improvement with public.
BlueberryMSX is already open source.

Happy New Year 2019!

Best Regards,

Miso Kim

By psxdev

Rookie (29)

psxdev's picture

29-12-2018, 17:36

Glad to see here Miso Kim, great work. Could you update resistors values in rpmc v9?

Thanks

By meeso.kim

Supporter (15)

meeso.kim's picture

29-12-2018, 17:42

You don't need to put any R because Raspberry Pi GPIO makes pull-up internally with output 1 simply.
And There is no 74HC244 any more on latest PCB (it's miss print). Only 74HC373 3pcs, 74LVC4245 1pc, and 74HC08 1pc.
If you want to use LEDs, you have to use 1k ohms ~ 47k ohms (less make brighter light) and 74HC595 1pc.

By psxdev

Rookie (29)

psxdev's picture

29-12-2018, 17:45

thanks again to share this for all

By uberjack

Master (218)

uberjack's picture

29-12-2018, 18:11

This is great! I remember posting about this some time back - RasPi is ideal for something like a homebrew 1chip MSX. Very happy to see that someone's starting on the hardware.

By DrWh0

Paladin (768)

DrWh0's picture

29-12-2018, 18:14

hamlet wrote:
Quote:

This is another project renamed and sold as different product Sad

My information is that Meeso Kim is the inventor of the board, as I mentioned in the news post. Please correct me if I'm wrong. As I'm known for late news post, this item was hangin' around at my home the last two months. I wasn't able to spend the time it deserves to test. I asked Meeso Kim this summer if he wanted to distribute the board, which he denied.
User mygodess did report about a ZemixMini.

Have a look at this tweet.

Correct, he is the original author as psxdev told us in the conference

By DrWh0

Paladin (768)

DrWh0's picture

29-12-2018, 18:22

We only wanted that they mention you clearly as original author of the project (you deserve the credit for it).

Of course as an free and open source project everyone is free to sell, build or modify the code and hardware sharing with everyone the improvements.

Nobody is arguying it Wink

Thank you again for your efforts Kim and happy new year! Smile

By SkalTura

Master (192)

SkalTura's picture

30-12-2018, 12:15

Looks interesting, would love to have one

By Manuel

Ascended (15815)

Manuel's picture

30-12-2018, 13:48

meeso.kim - if there's soething we can do in openMSX to help you, please let us know. What kind of flexibility is missing? I'm interested to know!

By meeso.kim

Supporter (15)

meeso.kim's picture

30-12-2018, 23:57

Manuel wrote:

meeso.kim - if there's soething we can do in openMSX to help you, please let us know. What kind of flexibility is missing? I'm interested to know!

Thank you for your support.
I will check latest OpenMSX status on Raspberry Pi.
OpenMSX was slighly heavy than blueberryMSX and the screen resolution was not easy to be improved in my experience.
I couldn't run it properly at that time with latest source code. I had to take a few step back commits to get proper working. It was Feb. 2018 in my memory.

OpenMSX is my favorite emulator for my PC.

By pakoto

Supporter (11)

pakoto's picture

31-12-2018, 09:22

74HC244 should be 74HC373. Right?

Thanks for this work, meeso.kim!

By pakoto

Supporter (11)

pakoto's picture

31-12-2018, 10:36

"74HC244 any more on latest PCB (it's miss print). Only 74HC373"

R7, R8 and R9 only for leds and not needed?

Image from rmpcv9 from your github. Files named as V4 ¿?

By gdx

Prophet (3084)

gdx's picture

31-12-2018, 09:44

Interesting project.

By Manuel

Ascended (15815)

Manuel's picture

31-12-2018, 10:32

Meedoen.kim: I am very interested to hear more details!

By Fabf

Master (222)

Fabf's picture

31-12-2018, 18:56

Great job Meeso, long time I look to your job.
Now I'm planning to make a MSXPi Smile
One question : /M1 is no longer decoded in RPMC V9 ?

By meeso.kim

Supporter (15)

meeso.kim's picture

01-01-2019, 14:17

M1 is not required for a normal cartridge except RAM extension with DRAM.
Thank you.

By Fabf

Master (222)

Fabf's picture

01-01-2019, 17:44

I have only one cartridge that require this signal (BEER IDE) but I think it's not really usefull.
Just need to check my design and I'll oder PCB.

I expect to test this soon B-)

By meeso.kim

Supporter (15)

meeso.kim's picture

02-01-2019, 00:43

I've applyied my modification on the recent openMSX source 1.15.0.
It works fine with SDL2-2.0.3 source compiled binary. The distributed binary is not working properly.
The only problem is that the menu key and cursor key in main menu are not working. 2018.8 version was fine.
I will share my modification for your test.

RPMC slot is working nicely on openMSX, too Smile.
openmsx -exta "RPMCSlot"

By meeso.kim

Supporter (15)

meeso.kim's picture

02-01-2019, 03:05

I've updated openMSX repository.
http://github.com/meesokim/openMSX

By Manuel

Ascended (15815)

Manuel's picture

02-01-2019, 16:38

meeso.kim: if you use the staticbindist build method, the build system will download the required libraries and compile them for you.

We are currently using SDL 2.0.9.

How are you building openMSX exactly? On my Linux box, the menu and cursor keys are working fine.

What do you mean exactly with "2018.8 version"? Version of what? If you mean openMSX, which exact version do you mean?

By TomH

Champion (327)

TomH's picture

02-01-2019, 22:10

If it's not too much of a distraction: what's the intended interfacing of an emulator to this board? I assume (?) you don't have a generic emulator patched to run in exactly real time and produce/react to real bus signalling, because you'd at least need to be bare metal for that sort of timing control and that's a whole different sphere of porting, so is it more like capturing an image of any on-board ROM contents and detecting any on-board hardware, then emulating those independently? Or am I grossly underestimating?

By luppie

Paladin (854)

luppie's picture

02-01-2019, 23:48

As Hamlet wrote in the newspost, I'm organizing a Group Buy.
The order form is online, you can find it here:

MSX Pi Extension Board


By meeso.kim

Supporter (15)

meeso.kim's picture

03-01-2019, 11:03

Did you use 'make staticbindist' instead of dynamic shared so?
I will try it today night. Thank you for your comments.
2018.8 version means the source codes of github at 2018.8.
It is not related to openMSX official version number.

By meeso.kim

Supporter (15)

meeso.kim's picture

03-01-2019, 11:10

TomH wrote:

If it's not too much of a distraction: what's the intended interfacing of an emulator to this board? I assume (?) you don't have a generic emulator patched to run in exactly real time and produce/react to real bus signalling, because you'd at least need to be bare metal for that sort of timing control and that's a whole different sphere of porting, so is it more like capturing an image of any on-board ROM contents and detecting any on-board hardware, then emulating those independently? Or am I grossly underestimating?

Technically it makes same or very similar signal of Z80 based MSX slot with GPIO manipulation. Of course, it supports only MSX slot signal not entire Z80 CPU signal or I/O signal. So you can use real MSX cartridge like a real MSX machine. Other components depend on MSX software emulators like blueMSX, openMSX or fMSX so on.

I think RPMC (Raspberry Pi MSX Clone) main goal is to make a better machine than OCMC (One Chip MSX Clone with FPGA). It can not be same to real MSX machine but it can be a better one for MSX fan in daily life.

By meeso.kim

Supporter (15)

meeso.kim's picture

03-01-2019, 16:18

Here is the recent RPMC board gerber files to order PCB and schematic.

RPMC V2019-1


You can get more information from github.
https://github.com/meesokim/msx-cartridge/tree/master/rpmcv2019-1

By Manuel

Ascended (15815)

Manuel's picture

03-01-2019, 19:38

meeso.kim wrote:

2018.8 version means the source codes of github at 2018.8.
It is not related to openMSX official version number.

It would be good to know which change broke it for you. Can you find out? (git bisect?)

By pakoto

Supporter (11)

pakoto's picture

03-01-2019, 20:52

Thank you!!
But now i have v9. It needs 74HC244 or 74HC373?

meeso.kim wrote:

Here is the recent RPMC board gerber files to order PCB and schematic.

You can get more information from github.
https://github.com/meesokim/msx-cartridge/tree/master/rpmcv2019-1

By syn

Paragon (1920)

syn's picture

03-01-2019, 21:29

Would real hardware expansions work? I know it is still early so there is room for improvement, but I'm interested if one can use a real fm pac, scc cartridge or gfx9000 etc, and if not would that be technically even possible?

By meeso.kim

Supporter (15)

meeso.kim's picture

04-01-2019, 06:31

Manuel wrote:
meeso.kim wrote:

2018.8 version means the source codes of github at 2018.8.
It is not related to openMSX official version number.

It would be good to know which change broke it for you. Can you find out? (git bisect?)

I can run openMSX properly with recent source and 'staticbindist' parameter.
It has still tiny/a little bit performance drop problem during real ROM cartridge. Sometimes performance drop reach 70%. It makes uncomfortable sound output. Of course blueberryMSX has no such problem. openMSX has rich functions than blueberryMSX. It might be a root cause. Because real MSX slot signal protocol makes a time consuming work. More faster emulator can meet the timing requirement.

By Pablibiris

Paragon (1767)

Pablibiris's picture

04-01-2019, 22:59

pakoto wrote:

Thank you!!
But now i have v9. It needs 74HC244 or 74HC373?

meeso.kim wrote:

Here is the recent RPMC board gerber files to order PCB and schematic.

You can get more information from github.
https://github.com/meesokim/msx-cartridge/tree/master/rpmcv2019-1

Interested in this question too :)

By meeso.kim

Supporter (15)

meeso.kim's picture

05-01-2019, 08:10

Pablibiris wrote:
pakoto wrote:

Thank you!!
But now i have v9. It needs 74HC244 or 74HC373?

meeso.kim wrote:

Here is the recent RPMC board gerber files to order PCB and schematic.

You can get more information from github.
https://github.com/meesokim/msx-cartridge/tree/master/rpmcv2019-1

Interested in this question too :)

It needs 74HC373 from V8. Thank you.

By pakoto

Supporter (11)

pakoto's picture

05-01-2019, 08:43

Thank you very much messo.kim

By Manuel

Ascended (15815)

Manuel's picture

05-01-2019, 18:31

meeso.kim wrote:

It has still tiny/a little bit performance drop problem during real ROM cartridge. Sometimes performance drop reach 70%. It makes uncomfortable sound output. Of course blueberryMSX has no such problem. openMSX has rich functions than blueberryMSX. It might be a root cause. Because real MSX slot signal protocol makes a time consuming work. More faster emulator can meet the timing requirement.

Well, it depends on many things. For instance, the scaling method used, the renderer used (OpenGL or software), the video settings used, the amount of sound channels that need to be emulated, the use of these sound channels, the type of sound chips that are generating sound, the resampler used....

There is no reason that blueMSX would be faster than openMSX, if the same kind of settings would be used. You can also take a look here: http://openmsx.org/manual/setup.html#tuning (although it might be a bit outdated).

By meeso.kim

Supporter (15)

meeso.kim's picture

09-01-2019, 01:50

Manuel wrote:
meeso.kim wrote:

It has still tiny/a little bit performance drop problem during real ROM cartridge. Sometimes performance drop reach 70%. It makes uncomfortable sound output. Of course blueberryMSX has no such problem. openMSX has rich functions than blueberryMSX. It might be a root cause. Because real MSX slot signal protocol makes a time consuming work. More faster emulator can meet the timing requirement.

Well, it depends on many things. For instance, the scaling method used, the renderer used (OpenGL or software), the video settings used, the amount of sound channels that need to be emulated, the use of these sound channels, the type of sound chips that are generating sound, the resampler used....

There is no reason that blueMSX would be faster than openMSX, if the same kind of settings would be used. You can also take a look here: http://openmsx.org/manual/setup.html#tuning (although it might be a bit outdated).

You're right. Recently I got recognized my slot access code has a few unnecessary code stuff. I am working for optimizing them. I will try openMSX once again just after finishing the code optimization.

By SkalTura

Master (192)

SkalTura's picture

11-01-2019, 10:08

No decoupling capacitors in the schematic..., will that work properly ?

By Wlcracks

Champion (326)

Wlcracks's picture

12-01-2019, 04:33

Nice idea. But indeed no decouple caps, no buffer caps. Some ferritebeads in the powersupply lines would be nice , to filter since its an open device. Because it has 2 slots and doing a lot of hardware projects myself, arent you worried about the 5V powersupply from the RPI? I am not so sure about the lastest PI, but the 3 i have is very picky about the voltage level. The ptc fuse on board will give a voltage drop very fast and will lock the cpu speed back to slow. If it was my project i would add an external (protected) power jack. maybe even trow an voltage regulator onboard. (Buck converter). an musicmodule and and gfx board will give problems i guess. Blowing up your scares msx hardware products would be a waste...The leds give already an avarage supply current of 80ma from the RPI not counting the chips and the carts. If this is designed for audio modules i would really recommend filtering, without filtering this could result in high frequency "whining" at the outputs.

Edit: i was sleeping, there is only 5v , the 12V supplies arent even there.. Some modules wont work.

By Giangiacomo Zaffini 2

Master (167)

Giangiacomo Zaffini 2's picture

12-01-2019, 14:52

Well I bought this slot interface for debugging/developping audio applications targeting sound espansion (Sfg-05, FM-PAC, DelSoRi, neotron, etc. ) cartridges, so every detail about sound path and/or power is appreciated.

By meeso.kim

Supporter (15)

meeso.kim's picture

16-01-2019, 02:24

Giangiacomo Zaffini 2 wrote:

Well I bought this slot interface for debugging/developping audio applications targeting sound espansion (Sfg-05, FM-PAC, DelSoRi, neotron, etc. ) cartridges, so every detail about sound path and/or power is appreciated.

Hi, Giangiacomo. There is no sound path and 12V. But I've tested usb audio bypass input. It works with sound path control trouble. Because it is not easy to use USB audio input (like MIC) and default BCM2835 audio output. Anyway Raspberry Pi has no audio input path. So I need an external USB audio for proper sound path in the future.

By Giangiacomo Zaffini 2

Master (167)

Giangiacomo Zaffini 2's picture

16-01-2019, 11:36

@meeso.kim : Thank You for the explanation.

By Giangiacomo Zaffini 2

Master (167)

Giangiacomo Zaffini 2's picture

25-01-2019, 21:29

Lately I thought that adding +12Vdc and -12Vdc with a plain ATX power supply should not be much of trouble and some sound modules such as DalSoRi or Sfg-05 have their output audio path.

By meeso.kim

Supporter (15)

meeso.kim's picture

28-01-2019, 08:17

Giangiacomo Zaffini 2 wrote:

Lately I thought that adding +12Vdc and -12Vdc with a plain ATX power supply should not be much of trouble and some sound modules such as DalSoRi or Sfg-05 have their output audio path.

Exactly, we can use the following +12V/-12V generator.
https://www.ebay.com/itm/TPS5430-Positive-Negative-Dual-Swit...

And it was a misdrawing of RPMC schematic. Because it was wrong +12V pin and -12V pin. I just put +12V only for 2 pins.
I will fix it and update it soon.

By Giangiacomo Zaffini 2

Master (167)

Giangiacomo Zaffini 2's picture

07-02-2019, 11:25

I think in Europe is easier/cheaper to order this
TRACO POWER TMV 2-0512DHI

By Robby

Master (173)

Robby's picture

08-03-2019, 13:39

Hello,

Question, is it already possible to load programs (files, roms, dsk images etc) from within msx blueberry msx basic? I cannot find any functionality / shortcut etc for it yet(?)....

By Giangiacomo Zaffini 2

Master (167)

Giangiacomo Zaffini 2's picture

04-05-2019, 12:52

just a little update about 12Vdc supply missing.
I found this item on Kadenken shop that allegedly should fix it :
Power connection harness for MSX by Lost Technology/mado sen

Some other information about it (still in Japanese) on maker blog page :
Lost Technology MSX AT PSU

Ciao! :)

By hamlet

Scribe (2626)

hamlet's picture

08-05-2019, 23:05

Nice find Giangiacomo Zaffini 2.

By Knightmare72

Supporter (5)

Knightmare72's picture

11-09-2019, 19:22

I have a doubt, I want to buy this board to use it on my raspberry pi 3, but I don't know how it works, I have read that you have to put a micro SD card with an operating system configured.
Where can I get this operating system?
Which?
Thank you.

By hamlet

Scribe (2626)

hamlet's picture

11-09-2019, 20:30

Hey Knightmare72. I do use this board with a 3b for myself.
Luppie has a download image ready on his MSXinfo.net homepage.

By Knightmare72

Supporter (5)

Knightmare72's picture

12-09-2019, 15:03

Thanks hamlet, one more thing, how does it work? Is it going well? Is it very complicated to make or is it better to buy it?
What program is used to open .gbr files?
Thanks for your help.

By Vampier

Prophet (2297)

Vampier's picture

12-09-2019, 18:46

By hamlet

Scribe (2626)

hamlet's picture

13-09-2019, 13:25

@Knightmare72 If you are ok with retrocomputing on a RasPi, this will be you gadget. I did not tested too many carts, mostly games. There are some which did not work properly, but the software is still in development and getting better.