Retrochallenge 2017/10

geoRAMThis year our staff decided to enter the retrochallenge competition. Our goal is to reverse engineer the Berkely softworks geoRAM and publish what we discover under the GPL. The geoRAM is a 512KB memory expansion for the Commodore 64 and 128. Unlike the Commodore 1750 REU, which contain a custom chip, the geoRAM is built completely out of standard TTL chips.

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MACSIMM - Programmable ROM SIMM for Mac SE/30, IIfx and IIsi

MACSIMMThe Mac SE/30 was the fastest of the classic compact black and white Macintosh computers. It featured a 16MHz 68030 with 68882 FPU and a 32-bit memory interface and supported, albeit not officially, up to 128MB of RAM. Unfortunately the SE/30 ROM contained some old code that used 24-bit addressing making it 32-bit dirty. Many classic computer enthusiasts make their SE/30 32-bit clean by installing a Mac IIsi ROM SIMM. These are nowadays quite rare and difficult to find.

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CGA2RGB - Digital RGBI to analog RGB for Commodore 128 and IBM PC CGA

CGA2RGBThe 80 column output of the Commodore 128 is the same digital RGBI used by the original IBM CGA graphics adapter. Unfortunately nowadays is quite difficult to find a monitor with the suitable RGBI input. The CGA2RGB adapter will convert the TTL RGBI to analog RGB suitable to be connected directly to a 15KHz capable RGB monitor or to the popular Gonbes GBS-8200 VGA converter.

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GLINKUSB-LT-C01 - User Port RS232 to USB for Commodore 8-bit Computers

glinkusbGLINKUSB-LT is a modern variation of the Commodore VIC-1011. Instead of providing a legacy 12V RS232 connection, it provides a USB Virtual Com Port (VCP) suitable for direct connection to any modern PC. The adapter is fully supported by the standard Commodore BASIC at up to 2400 baud. Jumpers allow the card to be configured as a UP9600 for 9600 baud operation in Novaterm and Striketerm. A reset button is also provided for added convenience.

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GGLABS at the 2017 Bay area Maker Faire

Bay Area Maker Faire Banner
GGLABS and our good friends at FLIRC and plugg.ee labs will be at the Bay Area Maker Faire. This year the faire will be 3 days from May 19th to the 21st. As usual Friday is dedicated to educators and makers while Saturday and Sunday are the general admission days. If you plan to attend the faire feel free to stop by and say hi. We will be showing some of our current projects and a few prototypes still in development.

F2R16 - Flash based ROM Replacement for Amiga Computers

F2R16The Amiga, like many other computers of the late 80s, uses 16-bit wide mask ROMs to store the machine firmware. Unfortunately, the pinout of these ROMs is incompatible with the JEDEC defined EPROM pinout. Memory manufacturers produced "ROM compatible" EPROMS like the 27C400 to allow development and quick turn manufacturing. These EPROMS are however becoming quite hard to find and still require a UV lamp to erase the chips. F2R16 brings all the benefits of modern flash memory technology to any platform designed to use these obsolete devices.

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GTERM25 - DB25 Active SCSI Terminator with diagnostics LEDs

GTERMActive termination is required to get newer higher performance drives working on vintage computers. Unfortunately both the Amiga and older Apple computers use a DB25 SCSI connector which makes finding a suitable terminator quite difficult. GTERM25 solves this problem providing a high performance active terminator with a DB25 connector and SCSI diagnostic LEDs.

RAMGS/4 - SIMM based 4MB memory expansion for the Apple IIgs

ramgsThe apple IIgs is the most advanced computer in the Apple II series. Equipped with a 65c816 8/16-bit CPU with 24-bit address space it could address up to 16MB of memory. The original rom 01 model shipped with 256KB of fast RAM, the revised rom 3 shipped with 1MB (both had an additional 128KB of standard RAM and 64KB of sound RAM). RAMGS/4 is a newly designed 4MB SIMM based memory expansion card for this great classic computer.

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GGLABS and Plugg.ee at The Bay Area Maker Faire

Bay Area Maker Faire Banner
GGLABS and our good friends at plugg.ee labs will be at the Bay Area Maker Faire. Following the tradition started last year the event will be 3 days from May 20th to the 22nd. If you plan to attend the faire feel free to stop by and say hi. We will be showing some of our current projects and a few prototypes still in development.

E2R16 - 27C400 programming adaptor for Minipro TL866

MiniproThe Minipro TL866 is very popular among hobbyist because of its low price and ease of use. Its list of supported chips is however somewhat limited compared to more expensive professional programmers. The E2R16 adapter adds support for the ROM pinout compatible EPROM of the 27C400 series which are compatible with Amiga computers and many arcade machines.

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