[Coco] CC-Five (was Re: Pseudo CoCo4???) (LONG)
msmcdoug at iinet.net.au
Tue Jan 23 03:15:17 EST 2007
Joel Ewy wrote:
> I'm aware of it and have looked at the web sites a few times, but
> haven't really been following along closely. In what sense is it a
> failure? Technically? Commercially?
IMHO - A little of both, though more-so the latter. Technically, the EP1K100
is simply too small - the C64 *just* fits and IIRC an alternate version is
missing sprites because they simply don't fit. There is also an EP1K30 which
acts as an I/O controller and, AFAIK, isn't open-source.
Commercially, I'd argue that it's a failure - not only because it has only
sold 1/2 of the initial production run - but also because its full potential
is yet to be realised, which alienates a lot of potential customers. There's
only 3 cores that I'm aware of in total. For a platform that has been around
for a few years, that's woeful.
> On the other hand, those of us
> already loony enough to still be using and talking about the Color
> Computer 16 years after Rad Shack quit caring about it can see the value
> in a computer that does some things very differently from what has
> become the norm in the PC world.
Agreed, but even considering the market size of "loonies", I'd argue it has
been a commercial failure!
> That's a good point. What little I've read about it suggests that the
> thing works, so it's not a technical issue. Maybe the problem, as you
> imply, stems from an individual's failure to deliver.
It works, yes, but there are some design flaws which preclude certain
features that were originally envisaged, such as the C64 cartridge port,
apparently. Plans also included "enhanced" C64 mode such as is touted for
the Coco, but they never materialised. The original architect is way too
busy being a minor celebrity these days...
Work is afoot to produce an add-in FPGA card with a Cyclone-II via the PCI
slot. However, bandwidth to the 2 existing FPGAs is somewhat limited which
stifles the design further IMHO.
> I think it should exist as a specification, which can be realized in
> emulation, and in an FPGA design -- preferably one that uses as much
> off-the-shelf hardware as possible.
That's a good idea, certainly! I'm endeavouring to make my own efforts as
portable as possible, with some success.
> I think there is an effort afoot in
> Australia to make a CoCo 1 in FPGA.
You mean here...??? ;)
| Mark McDougall | "Electrical Engineers do it
| <http://members.iinet.net.au/~msmcdoug> | with less resistance!"
More information about the Coco