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Best Drive/multicart option for c64/c128


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Hey dudes,

 

I just picked up a Commodore 128 and am wondering what my options are for a multicart/drive emulator. I've heard about the 1541 Ultimate, but it looks like a paint order, so I am wondering if there is anything else out there. Please let me know your thoughts.

 

Gracias

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The best possible option is probably the 1541 Ultimate II. It's expensive and something of a beast, but it does just about everything you could ever possibly want. I have some of the other solutions, but they're more limited. At the same time, some of those other solutions are also a lot cheaper and easier to order.

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Ask yourself: how do you feel about floppy disks, and do you already have a floppy drive to go with your C128? If you think floppy disks are cool and genuine, the cheaper SD based devices usually will suit you fine. Those programs that use a custom fastloader the SD device can't detect or handle, you can copy to a real disk and enjoy. Indeed you will miss out on a number of cool features the 1541 Ultimate II offers, but you also get your device faster and far cheaper.

 

If however you don't have or don't want to use a floppy drive, perhaps you think those should've been put to rest at the end at the 20th century if not sooner, then you probably should save up for an Ultimate. I don't know about the UK1541, SDrive 1564 and others, if those have expanded capacity over a regular SD2IEC based device, you might want to read up and compare those.

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From the thread at http://www.commodore.ca/forum/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=12475#p17481 --

 

[Jim Drew] will be demoing the uDrive (micro-Drive), a cycle-exact 1541 drive emulator. Under 1 square inch, the uDrive is designed to be fit inside the C64/128/SX-64 and allows the user to use .d64, .g64, or .scp image files (which means ANY disk, copy-protected or not).

Jim says, "It basically *is* a 1541 disk drive without the mechanical drive portion. It supports any type of ROMs (CBM, JiffyDOS, etc.) as image files. With just a firmware change I can emulate other drives, like the 1571, 1581, CBM hard drive, etc. It uses a micro-SD card for holding the files."

"It will be released as a 1541 emulator initially, with free firmware upgrades to make it a 1571, 1581, CMD hard drive, CBM hard drive, etc."

 

Truly,

Robert Bernardo

Fresno Commodore User Group

http://www.dickestel.com/fcug.htm

July 30-31 Commodore Vegas Expo v12 -

http://www.portcommodore.com/commvex

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The uDrive has piqued my interest. Running as a CMD hard drive I could use a large SD card as a hard drive, and if the CMD's drive compatibility modes are fully emulated I could also have floppy images within that emulated hard drive. Then it really is a setup-and-forget peripheral. The only shortcoming I can see running as a CMD HD is the lack of the parallel connection -- but definitely not a show-stopper by any means.

 

After seeing Lotharek's stereo POKEY adapter I thought about re-vamping my own personal stereo SID adapter that I made back in the 90s. Quality PCB production has reached the masses and I thought I might take advantage of that. But if Jim's making one, screw it, I will just wait and buy :)

 

EDIT: But then, I would not just be able to drop .D64 images on the SD card, I suppose.

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Yes, upon closer inspection it turns out the UK1541 has a full 1541 emulation. The price is decent - 65 Euros plus shipping, but Kisel's last batch of 10 units was sold out in February so unlike all the SD2IEC variants, it doesn't seem available for instant buy.

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