Re: [stella] VCS Hard Drive

Subject: Re: [stella] VCS Hard Drive
From: "Ratiki" <ratiki@xxxxxxx>
Date: Sun, 19 Jan 2003 11:47:10 -0500
> I like the idea of using the PC as a glorified DPC chip, but the idea of
> tethering an Atari to a PC to get it to do neat stuff feels more like
> cheating.  If you can fit a PC into a cartridge case I'm right with you
> though ;)  Maybe one of those new cheap Palm Zires might be an interesting
> compromise.... for someone with a lot more hardware knowhow than me.

Well, it is possible to have a complete PC in a Supercharger sized cart.  I
used to work with industrial computers and there exists a 386 and 486 in a
small 4"x6" board.  It does have 16 bit ISA connector but that's mainly used
to connect with a backplat for hooking up other ISA cards, it's not used if
it's just the PC itself.  Wire the power directly to the card and it's all
set.  The one I've worked with has 2 IDE (overkill I'd say), 1 floppy, 2
serial, 1 parallel, 1 PS/2 keyboard port, and 1 VGA port.  Just configure
the hardware and it can be set to function with nothing else but a hard
drive for data storeage and retrieval and the serial port for communication
with 2600.  The card also has an EPROM socket and can be set to load from
EPROM if the EPROM contains the valid DOS and the program so the PC card
could be up and ready at the flick of the power switch.

The only thing stopping me from actually testing this theory is the price
tag for a 386 board with minimal functions: about $500  Add RAM, small hard
drive, and a power supply for all of it (as the stock 9v power supply would
probably blow up) and you're looking at a very expensive auto multiloader.
rather stick with a $20 386 laptop and a Supercharger. ;)

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