VOGONS


First post, by JimWest

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Hi retro friends,

today I was thinking about of a replica of the AdLib Gold Surround Sound Module...
I have the AdLib Gold sound card lying around here and I am curious how the Surround Sound Module would sound like.
Unfortunately I don't have one. But I think it should be possible to recreate. To do so, first I need some high quality pictures of it.
Maybe someone of you guys own this module and provide some pictures of the backside, the front and a exact size of the PCB?

Thank you! 😀

The AdLib Gold Surround Sound Module Clone 😎

Reply 1 of 30, by JimWest

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Okay the project is making progress. Thanks to hard1k I was able to reconstruct the PCB and most of the circuit.

Here is a preview of the PCB:

AdLib Surround Sound Module Preview (back).jpg
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AdLib Surround Sound Module Preview (back).jpg
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27.99 KiB
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Fair use/fair dealing exception

There are still a few unknowns. If anyone has this sound module, I would be grateful for any picture! Currently I have one of the front and back directly from above.
A few with perspective would also be helpful.
Maybe Artex can help out with some pictures of his AdLib sound module? 😊

Last edited by JimWest on 2019-12-12, 09:10. Edited 1 time in total.

The AdLib Gold Surround Sound Module Clone 😎

Reply 2 of 30, by Tiido

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You can find most of the connectivity info from the datasheet of the main chip involved on the board, from what I remember the module is not very different from the example circuit.

T-04YBSC, a new YMF71x based sound card & Official VOGONS thread about it
Newly made 4MB 60ns 30pin SIMMs ~
mida sa loed ? nagunii aru ei saa 😜

Reply 3 of 30, by JimWest

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Yes that's true. The circuit is not too complicated. But the capacitors for the filters are not all that easy to determine. I suspect the values differ from the standard circuit.
In the picture I have, a few capacitors have some marking. Maybe, because they turned during placement.
I think that's a coincidence. Another module may have others to see. With it, I could confirm my previous assumptions.
Also, I don't know if there is a detection of the sound card, whether the surround module is connected. Does anyone have a hint?

I decided to first check the module on a test board before testing it on my AdLib Gold.

The AdLib Gold Surround Sound Module Clone 😎

Reply 4 of 30, by 640K!enough

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JimWest wrote:

Also, I don't know if there is a detection of the sound card, whether the surround module is connected. Does anyone have a hint?

If that's what you're asking, there is a detection mechanism for each of the optional modules on the Ad Lib Gold. Software can determine which modules are installed by querying the control chip. You can see this when you run the Gold Test application; it will list the installed modules and enable the options to test each one. Even the mixer TSR knows if the surround module is installed.

I never had any of the optional modules, so don't know the details of how it works, but I don't expect that it would be terribly complicated.

Reply 5 of 30, by JimWest

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Okay, I had expected something like that. I hope that for detection no contacts have been bridged under the pin strip.
I've been busy the last few days working on the test board.
Here is a screenshot of the PCB:

AdLib Gold Surround Module Test Board.png
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AdLib Gold Surround Module Test Board.png
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127.15 KiB
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The AdLib Gold Surround Sound Module Clone 😎

Reply 6 of 30, by JimWest

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It is going on! The PCBs have arrived today and the first board will be assembled at the weekend.
Here are a few pictures of the PCBs:

IMG_2356.jpg
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IMG_2355.jpg
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550 views
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CC-BY-4.0
IMG_2357.jpg
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IMG_2357.jpg
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1.26 MiB
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550 views
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CC-BY-4.0
IMG_2358.jpg
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IMG_2358.jpg
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1.32 MiB
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550 views
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CC-BY-4.0

How do you like the color? I think black goes very well with gold. 😎

The AdLib Gold Surround Sound Module Clone 😎

Reply 7 of 30, by hard1k

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Absolutely great! 👍
What about some possible SCSI addon board?;) I have some very immature ideas on it.

New sound card project: AWE64 Legacy
Please have a look at my wishlist (hosted at Amibay)

Reply 11 of 30, by JimWest

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Update: I finally found time to assemble all parts. Unfortunately I had ordered a resistor incorrectly and had to wait until the new delivery arrived.
Now I have to write the software for the Arduino and then I can finally start testing ... 😄

IMG_2796.jpg
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IMG_2792.jpg
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678.99 KiB
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IMG_2798.jpg
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IMG_2789.jpg
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IMG_2788.jpg
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377 views
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The AdLib Gold Surround Sound Module Clone 😎

Reply 12 of 30, by hard1k

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Awesome 😀

New sound card project: AWE64 Legacy
Please have a look at my wishlist (hosted at Amibay)

Reply 14 of 30, by Der Kuenringer

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Amazing project indeed!

keropi wrote on 2020-02-20, 10:16:

the bad thing is adlib golds are not common

Maybe someone can remedy that unfortunate reality at some point.
Given the many reproduction projects currently ongoing, would it not be feasible to clone an Adlib Gold as well?

Reply 15 of 30, by Benedikt

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Der Kuenringer wrote on 2020-02-20, 14:32:

Maybe someone can remedy that unfortunate reality at some point.
Given the many reproduction projects currently ongoing, would it not be feasible to clone an Adlib Gold as well?

The biggest obstacles would be the four-layer board layout and the "GOLD CTRL" gate array or whatever that is.
A work-alike based on a high-profile microcontroller plus DAC and ADC would be doable, but it would look nothing like an Adlib Gold, so I don't think it's going to happen.

The surround module looks cool, though!

Reply 16 of 30, by Der Kuenringer

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Benedikt wrote on 2020-02-20, 17:53:

A work-alike based on a high-profile microcontroller plus DAC and ADC would be doable, but it would look nothing like an Adlib Gold, so I don't think it's going to happen.

Hmm, if it can accurately reproduce the sound signature of an Adlib Gold, then I think it would still be an acceptable solution for a lot of people.
Once Dune rings in all it's glory, I wouldn't care much about the looks of the card that produces the sound in question 😊

Anyway, sorry for hijacking the thread. I'm interested in the surround module regardless, for that time when I hopefully get my hands on the add-on soundcard as well 😜

Reply 17 of 30, by hard1k

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Hey there! Any news on the project? 😀

New sound card project: AWE64 Legacy
Please have a look at my wishlist (hosted at Amibay)

Reply 18 of 30, by JimWest

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Unfortunately, the project is not quite as far as I would like it to be.
Lately I have had to deal with some retro hardware sales because I just ran out of space.
But the project is still at the top of my to do list.
I was already able to write code for the Arduino and run some tests.
The Development Board is currently producing a strong hum on the audio signal.
After all, nothing broke right now, which I think is a good sign. 😃
I may be brave and will just try it out on my AdLib Gold in the next few days. 😨

The AdLib Gold Surround Sound Module Clone 😎

Reply 19 of 30, by hard1k

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Keeping the fingers crossed!

New sound card project: AWE64 Legacy
Please have a look at my wishlist (hosted at Amibay)