Newly made Gravis Ultrasound compatible cards ... what's the degree of interest?

Discussion about old sound cards, MIDI devices and sound related accessories.

Re: Newly made Gravis Ultrasound compatible cards ... what's the degree of interest?

Postby Synoptic » 2017-12-21 @ 15:00

Phreeze wrote:i updated the shopping basket for 3 cards:
http://www.digikey.lu/short/qq9nnb


btw i can't edit older posts...what's the point....

Awesome.
What is missing beside the DRAM and DRAM socket ?
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Re: Newly made Gravis Ultrasound compatible cards ... what's the degree of interest?

Postby Phreeze » 2017-12-22 @ 08:40

should be only DRAM. Sockets are not necessary, i don't buy them.

i'm ordering dram from mouser, to be sure to get the stuff i need.
damn digi is free shipping, 55eur, but the value is 73eur, customs will charge me -.- just got a phone call from UPS asking for my VAT number lol..they thought it was for a company "because of many many items"..the guy had a very bad french AND english accent...like india-tech-support lol
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Re: Newly made Gravis Ultrasound compatible cards ... what's the degree of interest?

Postby 640K!enough » 2017-12-22 @ 09:40

The only obvious problem with that order is the lead time on the SOP-44 flash memory. If it really will take 20 weeks, I expect we'll be almost ready for the final production run by then. You'd probably get them sooner by finding them on eBay.
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Re: Newly made Gravis Ultrasound compatible cards ... what's the degree of interest?

Postby Synoptic » 2017-12-22 @ 13:06

Phreeze wrote:should be only DRAM. Sockets are not necessary, i don't buy them.


Ok, I think I have lost some information.
Is the DRAM the memory stick ?
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Re: Newly made Gravis Ultrasound compatible cards ... what's the degree of interest?

Postby 640K!enough » 2017-12-22 @ 16:49

Synoptic wrote:Ok, I think I have lost some information.
Is the DRAM the memory stick ?

The ARGUS can use either (or both, in some combinations) type(s) of memory: 72-pin SIMM or SOJ DRAM ICs. The SOJ-DRAM-only configurations allow a maximum of 4 MiB of memory, while SIMM-based configurations allow up to the InterWave maximum of 16 MiB.

Phreeze was referring to the SOJ sockets being unnecessary. Naturally, to use a SIMM, you need a socket, but I think he's still working under the assumption that shock__ will be including one with the prototypes. I will be ordering a non-angled socket anyway, since the angled varieties are likely to cause trouble with the first generation of pre-prototype ROM modules.
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Re: Newly made Gravis Ultrasound compatible cards ... what's the degree of interest?

Postby shock__ » 2017-12-22 @ 23:45

Revised news everybody!
Prototypes have already arrived in their originally intended shedule.
https://i.imgur.com/bg5ywRI.jpg

Looking good so far (except for the blowout on the chamfering at the bottom right - which is not on every board, it's probably done manually at the plant). Solderability is very nice and the gold surface gives it a high quality look. Stopmask is a bit more glossy than on the previous prototypes and yet again, I've already found 2 minor botches which I'm gonna fix ;)

Sadly I've run short on a few components, but those should arrive here quickly - meaning I will hopefully be able to test the layout before the turn of the year. Next step will be ordering boxes so the boards can start their trips to you (and of course soldering the InterWave chips to them first).
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Re: Newly made Gravis Ultrasound compatible cards ... what's the degree of interest?

Postby 640K!enough » 2017-12-23 @ 21:08

The boards do look rather good. Is the finish really that shiny in person, or is that from the lighting?

Seeing the assembly in progress only serves to convince me that the right-angled SIMM socket will get in the way of my first round of proof-of-concept boards. Having checked the measurements again, it seems like such a socket, with SIMM installed, has a height of about 11.5 mm. With low-profile headers, the board will likely only have a clearance of about 5 mm. The SIMM is also close enough that trying to insert the card at an angle won't work either. I guess it really will take an upright socket for the first round, for my purposes.

In other news, there is a problem with the instrument bank that has been bothering me since I heard shock__'s first recordings. I'm not sure about the melodic instruments, but I think they are passable. The percussive instruments, however, sound odd; almost like the samples are being played back at the wrong speed, are somewhat muffled or are being slightly truncated. I think it might be a problem with GIPC, which is a bit of a kludge to begin with. Adjusting the parameters with a hex editor seems to improve things, but I think I will have to find a way to get ahold of a (legitimate) copy of Awave Studio before the final run, to help sort things out and double-check the conversion results.

I'll post a few examples to highlight the problem when I have a little more time.
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Re: Newly made Gravis Ultrasound compatible cards ... what's the degree of interest?

Postby Phreeze » 2017-12-27 @ 09:14

ahh goood news :)

and my digikey order arrived this week. I still have to quickly order some DRAM

https://www.mouser.lu/ProductDetail/ISS ... 05C-50KLI/

about 6eur per piece...pretty expensive, if someone has a more cheap version, please link it !
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Re: Newly made Gravis Ultrasound compatible cards ... what's the degree of interest?

Postby matze79 » 2017-12-27 @ 15:26

Anyone knows where to get a Cheap PSOP 44 Socket ?

Desolder from Cheapo Ebay Adapter ?

30-40€ is a bit expensive.
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Re: Newly made Gravis Ultrasound compatible cards ... what's the degree of interest?

Postby shock__ » 2017-12-27 @ 15:34

I bought mine here: http://www.chip-service.de/product_info ... aichi.html

About DRAM: So far I salvaged it from graphics cards or RAM sticks. If 256K*16 are enough for you I can include 2 with your order.
(I'm currently waiting for new solderpaste and the boxes for shipping to arrive - if all goes by plan I'll be shipping off the cards on friday)
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Re: Newly made Gravis Ultrasound compatible cards ... what's the degree of interest?

Postby Phreeze » 2017-12-28 @ 10:54

what type has the memory to be ? you linked the mouse, which is 42 pin. Your sockets are 44 pin....i'm confused !? still the question FPM or EDO ? I'd prefer non-sockable ram chips as i don't see an interest in sockets, way too expensive
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Re: Newly made Gravis Ultrasound compatible cards ... what's the degree of interest?

Postby 640K!enough » 2017-12-28 @ 16:47

Let's try to clear some of this up:

  1. The SOJ DRAM ICs should be FPM, 70 ns or less, 5V. EDO can likely be used without ill effect, but will provide no advantage.
  2. The SOJ DRAM ICs can be 256Kx16 (40-pin) or 1024Kx16 (42-pin).
  3. The 44-pin SOP socket is for the instrument bank ROM/flash.
  4. The sockets for everything but the SIMM are optional; if you plan to use a SIMM, a socket is required. Without sockets, you simply solder the ICs to the board.
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Re: Newly made Gravis Ultrasound compatible cards ... what's the degree of interest?

Postby shock__ » 2017-12-28 @ 18:33

what 640K!enough said.

On a positive note: New prototype is working.
Boxes for shipping should arrive by tomorrow, therefore I expect to send off the prototypes by saturday.
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Re: Newly made Gravis Ultrasound compatible cards ... what's the degree of interest?

Postby Phreeze » 2017-12-29 @ 09:34

ahhhhh thank you ! this makes it clear!
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Re: Newly made Gravis Ultrasound compatible cards ... what's the degree of interest?

Postby shock__ » 2017-12-30 @ 23:21

Sadly the boxes didn't arrive in time ... so instead here's a photo of all 14 ARGUS Prototypes that will be sent out :)
https://i.imgur.com/82yeNxG.jpg
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Re: Newly made Gravis Ultrasound compatible cards ... what's the degree of interest?

Postby dogchainx » 2017-12-31 @ 01:06

shock__ wrote:Sadly the boxes didn't arrive in time ... so instead here's a photo of all 14 ARGUS Prototypes that will be sent out :)
https://i.imgur.com/82yeNxG.jpg


Money shot. :cool:
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486DX2-66Mhz-16MB-4.3GB+SpeedStar64 VLB DRAM 2MB+AWE32/SB16+SCB-55
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Re: Newly made Gravis Ultrasound compatible cards ... what's the degree of interest?

Postby shock__ » 2018-1-02 @ 07:11

Good news everyone, turns out it's good enough to use a 74LS32 for U40 instead of a 74F32.
Bad news everyone, I found a problem with some obscure memory configurations. Is anyone of you intending to use a mixed configuration between the SIMM and the onboard DRAMs? Turns out those can result in the banks "fighting" each other leading to occasional RAM errors, it can currently be fixed by going either with SIMM _or_ DRAM for all banks _or_ switching to another SIMM stick (I have one which is occasionally making trouble, another works fine). It can probably be fixed by using another value for the pullups tho. In case you want to use such a mixed setup, you're more than welcome to test as much as you can and report your results.

Also: Still no shipping boxes around - expecting them to arrive here today :( I hope to have the cards shipped by Thursday at worst.
Also²: HNY
Also³: Other than above the prototype is working nicely so far. Except for two minor messups with the silkscreen the card is working great, with the previous messups being resolved (most noticeably the DRAMs are a lot nicer to solder by now, the DSUB15 MIDI connector is sitting perfectly flush with the edge of the board and the ROM jumpers doing exactly what they're supposed to).
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Re: Newly made Gravis Ultrasound compatible cards ... what's the degree of interest?

Postby Phreeze » 2018-1-02 @ 13:55

great and happy new year :)

so we could also leave away the expensive 6€/$ / piece of DRAM ? I got some SIMMs laying around, i'll just use them then
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Re: Newly made Gravis Ultrasound compatible cards ... what's the degree of interest?

Postby 640K!enough » 2018-1-02 @ 17:27

Phreeze wrote:so we could also leave away the expensive 6€/$ / piece of DRAM ? I got some SIMMs laying around, i'll just use them then

Yes, the SOJ DRAM is entirely optional. One can use a SIMM instead, or no RAM at all, if effects and GUS compatibility are not required.
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