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Please help SIO2USB/SIO2PC: Which one?


darryl1970
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I have an Atari 800XL and a 1050 drive. I have old games, written when I was in junior high, and I would like to move them to the PC, where I can casually enjoy them via emulation. Likewise, I have recently hacked a couple A8 games (Popeye and Donkey Kong Jr). I would like to be able to enjoy them on my ACTUAL 800XL hardware.

 

I really liked the idea of Lotharek's SIO2SD. However, I heard it can be tedious to cycle through a lot of software with 1 line of text and 4 buttons. Even though it would require my laptop nearby, I think I am leaning toward the SIO2PC/SIO2USB solution.

 

The problem is that there are two different items with the same name. (One uses caps in the product name).

Which one is the most versatile and uses the best software.

 

AtariMax has an SIO2USB, and I have been eyeing that for a long time. My understanding is that it uses WinAPE software.

 

Lotharek has an sio2usb. It is tiny -- the size of an sio plug. I am not sure what software works with it, but he seems to have a lot of good stuff.

 

So WHICH ONE?

  1. I would like to be able to use .atr AND .xex files. Can either of these units handle both formats?
  2. Which one has easier to use software?
  3. Will either one be better for transferring my old games TO the PC? (Will they both act as a 1050 emulator to my PC?)
  4. Is it possible that neither of these will work for my purpose, and I need to go SIO2SD?
  5. Finally, are there any solutions I am missing?

I have searched SIO2USB and SIO2PC in the forums, and I seem to get way too many irrelevant posts..

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Lotharek's one should work with the Atarimax APE software. I've got a selfmade SIO2PC with RS232 interfacing chip and it works with APE as well as Aspeqt.

 

Another solution is SIO2BT (Bluetooth) - not sure what the interface software progress is but the intent is to be able to use a cheap mobile phone as the peripheral device.

 

Possible issue with the USB interfaces, I think a driver is required and not sure how Lotharek's one goes about it, my understanding is that Steve paid for MS driver signing for his one (can be an issue with later Win versions which don't allow unsigned driver installs).

 

The RS232 based ones - probably not worth bothering with since it's a legacy port and getting hard to find on PCs.

 

Both APE and SIO2SD support extra SIO commands so it is possible with special software running on the Atari to control things like mounting of images. Though that means booting up the software to do that so it's not trivial.

 

If you want portabiltiy go for the SIO2BT or SIO2SD. If you don't mind having your Atari tethered to a laptop or desktop PC then go for one of the cabled interfaces.

 

A big advantage though for the cabled ones is that software you've freshly downloaded or developed can be instantly run on the real machine as opposed to SIO2SD where you need the intermediate copying process to the SD card.

Edited by Rybags
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I have an Atari 800XL and a 1050 drive. I have old games, written when I was in junior high, and I would like to move them to the PC, where I can casually enjoy them via emulation. Likewise, I have recently hacked a couple A8 games (Popeye and Donkey Kong Jr). I would like to be able to enjoy them on my ACTUAL 800XL hardware.

 

I really liked the idea of Lotharek's SIO2SD. However, I heard it can be tedious to cycle through a lot of software with 1 line of text and 4 buttons. Even though it would require my laptop nearby, I think I am leaning toward the SIO2PC/SIO2USB solution.

 

The problem is that there are two different items with the same name. (One uses caps in the product name).

Which one is the most versatile and uses the best software.

 

AtariMax has an SIO2USB, and I have been eyeing that for a long time. My understanding is that it uses WinAPE software.

 

Lotharek has an sio2usb. It is tiny -- the size of an sio plug. I am not sure what software works with it, but he seems to have a lot of good stuff.

 

I have searched SIO2USB and SIO2PC in the forums, and I seem to get way too many irrelevant posts..

 

The above are not SIO2USB. They are called SIO2PC -USB. There are true SIO2USB you can get more info searching the site.

As you mentioned, there are too much info regarding this subject that might lead to confusion.

Rybags gave a very good summery. The only thing I might add is that you can make your own SIO2PC device if you want (easy to make).

 

madi

Edited by Madi
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I'm also looking to purchase one of the many floppy drive replacements so I'm starting to build up a spreadsheet of all of the devices info BUT I started to wonder if this had been done before. Instead of having everyone read each forum thread for this info, I thought a single point of info would help a lot of people simplify their buying decision. Even a RS232 option could still be a solution. Although they're not selling new systems with serial ports, you can find older systems for next to nothing, if not free. Snag yourself a small form factor pc that runs XP and you're good to go. I tend to just remote into these old boxes so I don't even need to give it peripherals.

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But each solution will cost money and that's money someone could put towards other items. Maybe performance is important to one person while flexibility to another, price, support, build quality, etc. For example, SIO2SD can be purchased with or without a case. That's a cost savings that would be important but you then have to factor in the shipping cost. Would a more local solution be better.

I tend to spend more time thinking about this stuff then sometimes doing. A personal problem but I can be sure that when I do make a purchase it's well thought out and I like to share this info with others so that they don't reinvent the wheel.

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Well, I decided that the AtariMax solution was simple, convenient, and it has been around a long time.

 

I searched and searched. I found nothing, and not a lot of help here.

 

THEN, I accidentally stumbled upon this.

 

I share for anybody else interested....

 

http://www.atari8warez.com/SIO2PCCompare.html

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Well, I decided that the AtariMax solution was simple, convenient, and it has been around a long time.

 

I searched and searched. I found nothing, and not a lot of help here.

 

THEN, I accidentally stumbled upon this.

 

I share for anybody else interested....

 

http://www.atari8warez.com/SIO2PCCompare.html

 

 

His is good too, I have one of his and one of the AtariMax ones. And one of the AtariMax cartridges (MyIDE-II CompactFlash).

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His is good too, I have one of his and one of the AtariMax ones. And one of the AtariMax cartridges (MyIDE-II CompactFlash).

Thanks. As I mentioned, I actually purchased the AtariMax SIO2PC before I found the chart. I have seen it around for a long time, and I have also wanted a 5200 & Coleco SD cart for just as long. I snagged the SIO2PC and 5200 SD cart. I figured $200 was enough to spend for now. I'll grab the Coleco a little later.

 

After purchasing, I read that the full APE version costs $104. I was immediately sick that I might have not looked into all of my options close enough; so I found a contact email, and I emailed Steve. He was quick to reply, and he told me that the trial version should do everything I am looking for.

 

Not only does that make me feel at ease, but it was a positive experience from a customer service point of view!

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Still valid and works perfectly with respeQt on the Mac (and aspeQt on Win and so on): http://www.abbuc.de/community/forum/viewtopic.php?f=15&t=6102&p=45929&hilit=sio2miniusb#p46221

 

https://www.sparkfun.com/products/9716 (there are many more cheap small boards like this, which will do the job, too).

Edited by skr
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After purchasing, I read that the full APE version costs $104

 

 

OUCH! It was 49.99 when I bought it. August of 14.

 

 

Item# SIOJACK-USB , Colors: Red Green LED $59.95

Item# USBCABLE $4.99 USD

Item# APE-ALL-FS $49.99 USD 1 $49.99 USD

 

Glad I bougth when I did haha, although I wouldn't have minded I think that month I net like 7k USD. *sigh* I miss that kind of income so so much.

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If you don't mind a little bit of soldering, you could make SIO2USB for as little as $3 using fake FTDI chip or ~$15 for genuine as mentioned above.

http://atariage.com/forums/topic/242526-cheap-but-effective/

This might be a great solution for a short time fix until I make up my mind. Thx for that info.

Also, that chart was exactly what I was hoping for.

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So,I only looked quickly at first and so now that I had some timento actually read this, I noticed the table covered usb devices. Still, lots of great areas of coverage that I didn't quite think about so I can "borrow" those for my list of CF/SD versions.

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  • 4 months later...

Out of curiosity, have the available offerings changed since last year, when this thread first began? Like the OP, I'd like to archive my collection of floppy disks while they are still readable (knock on wood).

 

If not, I'll post my own results once I've got everything on hand.

Edited by driph
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