Toshiba T5200 mods and upgrades

Discussion about old PC hardware.

Re: Toshiba T5200 mods and upgrades

Postby Hamby » 2018-5-21 @ 02:29

I think it looks fine.
Don't like the color display though, lol.

I wish they still made orange gas-plasma displays.
Though I think I already shared where they make EL displays (like the GRiD) for ultrasound machines.
(once I figure out how, I think I'm going to build a custom laptop with a surplus EL display...)

I always thought the T3200 had same size display as T5200?
Or is it just that this display doesn't match?

I keep putting off opening my T5200 up again; every time I open it is an opportunity for something to get broken.
But, I need to sooner or later investigate that capacitor to see why my cmos battery is getting drained almost instantly.
(assuming it's the capacitor).

I've kinda wanted the T5200 to become my main DOS PC; for whatever reason, I really want to do some DOS game programming. I've been working my way through Abrash's black book (well, the chapters on ModeX graphics). I've been currently working in DOSBox using the vintage software tools on my main computer, but it would be nice to fire up that laptop and work on vintage hardware, too.

I hope IanB shows up again soon. I hope he's okay.

So what's your next project?
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Re: Toshiba T5200 mods and upgrades

Postby OldCat » 2018-5-21 @ 07:40

Hamby wrote:I wish they still made orange gas-plasma displays.

I echo that sentiment!

Hamby wrote:Though I think I already shared where they make EL displays (like the GRiD) for ultrasound machines.
(once I figure out how, I think I'm going to build a custom laptop with a surplus EL display...)

Interesting - I wanted to get my hands on one of old laptops with EL display, but they are nowhere to be found in this part of the world and importing one would be prohibitively expensive for me. So yes, if you ever make such a project, by all means, please let everyone here know (and ping me a private message, so that I do not miss out).

Hamby wrote:I always thought the T3200 had same size display as T5200?
Or is it just that this display doesn't match?

I think I wrote it somewhere in this or other thread: T5200 and T3200SX do have the same displays, VGA 640x480, 16 shades of intensity. T3200 and T5100 have EGA screens of similar size, but different parameters: 640 by 400 pixels and 4 shades of intensity - that's why CGA games look really well on these machines.

Hamby wrote:I've kinda wanted the T5200 to become my main DOS PC; for whatever reason, I really want to do some DOS game programming. I've been working my way through Abrash's black book (well, the chapters on ModeX graphics). I've been currently working in DOSBox using the vintage software tools on my main computer, but it would be nice to fire up that laptop and work on vintage hardware, too.

Can you actually elaborate a bit more on how you can get into DOS game programming? What is Abrsh's black book (sounds like necromancy tome)?

Hamby wrote:I hope IanB shows up again soon. I hope he's okay.

This is the second time someone here worries about IanB - is there any hint he might not be okay?
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Re: Toshiba T5200 mods and upgrades

Postby Hamby » 2018-5-21 @ 21:32

LOL

Abrash's black book is sort-of a necromancy tome... it goes into great depth about dos programming, especially vga graphics programming, and the (then) little-known ModeX graphics.
http://www.phatcode.net/res/224/files/html/index.html
To get into dos game program, you just need a dos compiler... DJGPP is a 32-bit dos compiler that's become popular. The old Borland Turbo C 2.0 can still be found; even Borland C++ 4.5, as well as OpenWatcom and a number of others. (I use the Borland compilers, partly because the examples in his book use them, and partly because I always liked them. )

There are lots of dos game programming tutorials online, but I have an entire bookshelf filled with game programming books (it's something I've wanted to do for a very long time).

People are still writing games for old systems; 8-bit guy wrote "Planet X2" for the Vic-20 and C-64, and is now porting it to DOS. A few years ago, a guy wrote "Paku-Paku", a Pacman clone using an obscure CGA *text* mode (160 x 100, 16 colors).

Mostly I'm interested in how the various genres of games were developed for DOS.

I think I was the one worrying about IanB earlier. I have no reason to think anything is wrong, other than the fact that he hasn't participated in awhile, now, and I tend to be a pessimist...
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Re: Toshiba T5200 mods and upgrades

Postby Vipersan » 2018-5-21 @ 22:00

Hi Hamby..
I know you and others dislike the retrofitting of a colour TFT in this lovely old lappy ...but seriously ..
what choice have I got ?
I made the decision to fit it in the T3200 at least ..maintaining the 5200 as is ..though there is a single line vertical artifact on screen.
At least it is on the left edge of the screen so doesn't irk me overmuch.
I think it safe to say I kept the 5200 as near original as possible considering the upgrades..which were done with much respect to the original format.
The main driving issue for me was the inability to obtain genuine 40 pin simms ...and having increased the memory with Ians 72 pin EDO simm mod ..I guess at that point originality was already sacrificed..so no reason to not continue modding ..
The lack of IO being another factor.
So my 5200 is now a 486 Win95 unit ...and the 3200 a 286 DOS & win 3 unit..
I also added Xtree gold to the 286 DOS lappy ...but for now at least I can integrate a display albeit non genuine TFT.
I do hope Ian comes back soon ..
I feel like we are missing a vital member of our Toshy family..without whos great skill and input ..I would have made zero progress.
rgds
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Re: Toshiba T5200 mods and upgrades

Postby Hamby » 2018-5-22 @ 08:32

I'm not criticizing you. I'm just sorry no orange gas-plasma display is available.

On the upside, a more modern display is going to have less movement blur.
I'm less concerned with originality than with usability. That's why I'm worried about fixing my cmos battery issue.

I'm torn as to what I want to do now.
I'd like to get an HP200lx; I'd like to get a proprietary video card for my empty lunchbox case ($85 is a lot to justify for a retro PC case that may or may not even work). I'd like to get a 486 mb and build another desktop gaming PC that can take my old Voodoo 3D accelerator card (can't use a voodoo add-on card in the lunchbox since it requires that proprietary video card).
I also want to start building some custom retro cases. I have some ideas in mind, but I'm pretty sure I lack the skill at present.

edit: just bought myself a birthday present off of ebay: HP 200LX palmtop DOS computer.

I feel guilty because I don't even play with my Psion 3A as much as I'd like, but I justify it because I can use it to 'test' some of the games I may someday possibly write, lol.

I've been holding off buying things, hoping to buy another T5200 as a parts machine. if the gas-plasma display works, I don't really care what else may be wrong with it.
(dang! Just remembered I still need to copy the 100mb HD from my T5200 for IanB. It's funny how the entire hard drive's contents can be copied and made into a zip file with comparatively little effort. Hardest part will be in getting my desktop DOSbox to recognize the drive).
Maybe I should get an old-fashioned IDE to USB adapter for my Win7 machine?
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Re: Toshiba T5200 mods and upgrades

Postby OldCat » 2018-5-22 @ 09:10

Vipersan wrote:I know you and others dislike the retrofitting of a colour TFT in this lovely old lappy ...but seriously ..
what choice have I got ?

Hey, hey, don't feel bad, I have utmost respect for your electronics and modding skills. It doesn't look bad, either. I am just teasing a bit - you know that the original plasma is just SO cool.

Vipersan wrote:I made the decision to fit it in the T3200 at least ..maintaining the 5200 as is ..though there is a single line vertical artifact on screen.

Quite often in these screens this may be a "cold solder" ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soldering#Electronics ). You can try to check these "fat" solders on top of the screen - every now and then one of them can be repaired.

Vipersan wrote:I do hope Ian comes back soon ..
I feel like we are missing a vital member of our Toshy family..without whos great skill and input ..I would have made zero progress.

Fingers crossed. But let's not talk about him as if he was dead - perhaps he is taking a break from computers, perhaps is extremely busy with something (adult life can be like that, sometimes), and perhaps he's out on vacation.
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Re: Toshiba T5200 mods and upgrades

Postby Vipersan » 2018-5-22 @ 10:24

Hamby wrote:
(dang! Just remembered I still need to copy the 100mb HD from my T5200 for IanB. It's funny how the entire hard drive's contents can be copied and made into a zip file with comparatively little effort. Hardest part will be in getting my desktop DOSbox to recognize the drive).
Maybe I should get an old-fashioned IDE to USB adapter for my Win7 machine?

I've already tried an IDE > USB interface to copy my Conner ...
sadly the drive structure is simply not recognised.
I guess there is no easy way to interface with hard drives of this period ...
I assume the way the sectors are layed out on the platter is incompatible..
If you do find a way to do this ...I too would like to clone the contents of my original 5200 conner ...whilst it still lives..
lol
..even the 5200 will no longer accept the conner ..now that we have a new bios fitted..
The only way to mount and use the drive is to swap out the bios chip with the original first.

Oh ...forgot to add ...good luck with your DOS game programming venture Hamby..
Never dabbled myself..
I grew up on 6502 ...but did write a few games myself ..back in the day.
One of which was actually packaged with the Comodore C16 starter pack if memory serves..
Punchy
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N3auawQu_V0
Ahh those were the days ..
I had a young ..fresh..mind and it was so easy to tackle these things..
Not so much now at 60 years and counting.
I swear the brain turns to stone as we age..
lol
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Re: Toshiba T5200 mods and upgrades

Postby chozilla » 2018-5-25 @ 10:52

Vipersan wrote:I've already tried an IDE > USB interface to copy my Conner ...
sadly the drive structure is simply not recognised.


I think it really is a addressing issue, since for example the patched BIOSes make the original drives inaccessible.
And every constellation with a xtide bios did not turn out well with my working conner drives.

reg4rds
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Re: Toshiba T5200 mods and upgrades

Postby cktwo » 2018-5-25 @ 17:41

Hi all,

Got hold of a Toshiba 5200/100 for a couple of bucks on a flee market the other day.

I was able to burn IanB’s great BIOS and the machine is now booting off a industrial CF card with IDE adapter. Great work, THANK YOU!!

I thought that the disk drive was broken first until I realised that the parallel port was set to connect a floppy drive as A:. Changed the little switch on the left hand side to „PRT“ and the drive worked!

Just being curious about it, I equipped the machine with Intel „RapidCAD“ CPU and FPU. I will provide pictures and benchmark results later.

Two problems remain though: The battery is empty and therefore the CMOS settings are lost after each cold start. My Toshiba had a „Saft“ battery with 5.2 (!) volts and 2.3 Ah. Does anyone know where to get a replacement for this? Neither ebay nor Google could help me so far...

This is what the battery looks like:
84C1889B-EBC1-49C8-B308-63906FA605FA.jpeg


Also, the system reports memory check errors on startup. It seems to be the memory on the fully populated memory expansion board. Is there any way to fix this since those proprietary modules are virtually impossible to get. Can anyone help me with the necessary soldering work?

Thanks to you all in advance!
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Re: Toshiba T5200 mods and upgrades

Postby Hamby » 2018-5-27 @ 07:22

I put a CR2032 battery in mine. But, it's being eaten up in a matter of minutes, so I probably have a bad capacitor.
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Re: Toshiba T5200 mods and upgrades

Postby OldCat » 2018-5-27 @ 18:43

cktwo wrote:Got hold of a Toshiba 5200/100 for a couple of bucks on a flee market the other day.

I'm jealous! Had to pay quite a bit more for my plasma beasts...

cktwo wrote:I was able to burn IanB’s great BIOS and the machine is now booting off a industrial CF card with IDE adapter. Great work, THANK YOU!!

Cheerio!

cktwo wrote:Two problems remain though: The battery is empty and therefore the CMOS settings are lost after each cold start. My Toshiba had a „Saft“ battery with 5.2 (!) volts and 2.3 Ah. Does anyone know where to get a replacement for this? Neither ebay nor Google could help me so far...

I used SAFT LS14500CNA 3,6V for all my Toshibas (T3100, T5100, T3200SX). I know that many others use CD2032 in it and it works fine. So, your was probably somebody's replacement and you don't have to search for the exact same one. Just use either option and you will be fine.
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Re: Toshiba T5200 mods and upgrades

Postby cktwo » 2018-5-28 @ 18:24

Here's the promised picture of the RapidCAD CPU installed. As expected, the RapidCAD gives little integer improvment but huge FPU improvement since it is a 486DX that (unfortunately) has been deprived of its cache.

IMG_3995.JPG


In order to narrow down the memory issue, I have removed all SIMM modules, thus leaving only the 1 MByte soldered onto the memory card. Unfortunately the error messages still occur. So it seems to be the memory soldered onto the memory expansion board. The memory on the mainboard seems to be working though since there are no error messages when I completely remove the memory expansion board... I am little clueless here now...

IMG_1861.JPG


Thanks for any help and advice in advance
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Re: Toshiba T5200 mods and upgrades

Postby Hamby » 2018-6-03 @ 11:39

Vipersan,

ordered myself an inexpensive multimeter, inexpensive soldering iron (with accessories), and some heat shrink tubing and other accessories today.

Hopefully next weekend I'll be able to take my T5200 apart again and find the bad capacitor and order a replacement. I want to get it working right and start using it regularly.
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Re: Toshiba T5200 mods and upgrades

Postby Vipersan » 2018-6-04 @ 10:26

Good luck buddy ...and have fun.
Let us know how you get on.
rgds
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Re: Toshiba T5200 mods and upgrades

Postby cktwo » 2018-6-08 @ 18:08

Anyone any ideas how to solve the problem with the RAM expansion board?

THANKS!
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Re: Toshiba T5200 mods and upgrades

Postby matze79 » 2018-6-18 @ 11:25

IanB wrote:
matze79 wrote:i have a Sanyo Notebook with very similar BIOS, which seems to have lot of freespace on its 27C1024 ROM.
But i have no clue where to insert the XTIDE Stuff.
How did you managed this ?

You put the XTIDE image in the free space and then make a small patch to the BIOS extension ROM scanning code so that it initialises XTIDE in it's new location.

Try this:
sanyo_18MB with XTIDE embedded beta1.zip

I put a standard build of the 386 version of XTIDE in the ROM image.
Note this won't work with Windows 2/386 or Windows 3.0 due to workspace conflicts. It should work OK with Windows 3.1 or later.
I made a patched version of XTIDE for the T5200 which used some different workspace so I could run all versions of Windows in a multiboot setup but those changes may conflict with your BIOS so I used the standard version for now.
It might not work with an existing small drive unless that drive is repartioned and reformatted so test with a new larger drive if there is a problem.

Use at your own risk, it's completely untested.

If it works, you can replace the XTIDE part with any new or alternate build by overwriting the data at 0x15000 in the file and then updating the checksum byte at the end of the file.


Does not work on the Sanyo, it just beeps 2 times, i found 27C1024's today so i could try it now.
The Screen does not turn on. Just stays black.

I now trying to delete the ROM and reprogram maybe there is something else wrong.
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