Jump to content
IGNORED

Concerto firmware thread


batari

Recommended Posts

21 hours ago, Laner said:

I'd

 

I'd pop the cart open, ensue the HOKEY is aligned correctly, and reseat it.

 

I'll try that this weekend, thanks!
 

I did read a thread from 2020 with other people having a very similar problem with Ballblazer, but other people from 2023 are saying how Ballblazer works but has a loud buzz.

 

Mine is supposed to be a socketed unit ($15 more), so I could swap HOKEY for a spare POKEY and see if that works...

 

I wish there was a customer support email address for them.  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

3 hours ago, CommodoreDecker said:

My Concerto cartridge has a label over it. I presume that the warranty is void if I poke a hole in the label to get to the screw. 

If it's anything like my label was, try peeling up the corner and see if you can peel it up far enough to get to the screw.  That's what I did and I didn't have to damage the label.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Mine arrived with the label unattached because I was going to add a POKEY chip. Before assembling it, I covered all the holes in the front shell with epoxy in order to get a flat surface before adding the label. Obviously I didn't include the screw and it works and looks fine.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 4/20/2023 at 5:53 PM, Nathan Strum said:

To open mine I just punched a hole through the label. Since it's common to have to remove the POKEY to do a firmware upgrade, I figured at some point replacement labels would be made available. Hardly warranty-voiding, especially for WIP homebrew hardware.

 

Cool.  The site said "lifetime warranty" and I immediately spazzed.  

 

So a small update -- I did manage to look through the bottom of the cartridge; a HOKEY appears to be installed - I have yet to open the unit, but have a feeling the chip is working as intended:

 

I also looked up the 7800 I had; I forgot that it has the RF removed and AV mod.  I took out my original Commando cart to compare this time -- I did finally hear some music, but it's highly muffled and barely audible.  Very muffled.  The new receiver I'd hooked up must be doing audio cleanup, but I recall reading that a wire or resister had to be installed somewhere to pipe through POKEY sounds at the same volume through to the audio.  From what i recall, the same 7800 on the old receiver had some loudness, but not too much - I forgot about that completely.  Will open the cart after I figure out which wire to add and where. :D  I didn't hear POKEY sounds after putting Concerto back and loading Commando, but I'd wager that fixing the sound from the original cartridge will likely resolve all other issues. 

 

Definitely YMMV. :D  Will look up some comparable posts for that issue and whip out the soldering iron and take some deep breaths (just not in the direction of the molten solder... yuck...)

 

 

(Will definitely look up R14... )

 

 

 

 

Edited by CommodoreDecker
  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

34 minutes ago, CommodoreDecker said:

 

 

Am also looking up these articles before I dig in.  I'm pretty sure the AV mod from whomever installed it before I bought it last year put in one wire incorrectly and I made note of the correct resistors on the 7800 board. :) 

 

 

 

I do think that before you go and try and modify the concerto, that it would be best to start with making sure the audio is properly balanced on the 7800 itself first. Again, using your Commando cartridge the TIA and POKEY should be roughly the same volume level on any system you connect it up to. Only then after that was confirmed good, then I would reach out to Batari to see if the concerto should be looked at next.

 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

So I took apart the 7800 after trying out my Commando cart.  Looked at C10, et al.  Saw the C10 had a resistor on it for Pokey output.  Saw where the TIA output was.  I moved the resistor there and soldered a separate blue wire in its place, since I didn't want to risk breakiing what felt like a fragile wire.  The result of this is a near-even sound when using the Commando cart. 

 

I then tried Concerto. Commando's TIA output sounds a bit quieter, but not too much so.  However, there's still no POKEY sounds at all. 

 

I'll probably look for a higher-ohm resistor and swap it out, just to even out the sounds perfectly. But something else is still going on. :(

 

 

ON EDIT: Spelling typo (re: the Concerto) and slight clarification text (blue wire).

 

 

 

FULL-1.jpg

FULL-2.jpg

FULL-3.jpg

FULL-4-After.jpg

Edited by CommodoreDecker
Link to comment
Share on other sites

42 minutes ago, -^CrossBow^- said:

I do think that before you go and try and modify the concerto, that it would be best to start with making sure the audio is properly balanced on the 7800 itself first. Again, using your Commando cartridge the TIA and POKEY should be roughly the same volume level on any system you connect it up to. Only then after that was confirmed good, then I would reach out to Batari to see if the concerto should be looked at next.

 

 

Much thanks for the response!  I actually just finished doing that and was uploading photos when I saw the pop-up coming in that you'd replied. :) I had wanted to rule out the 7800 entirely. Was intrigued that the resistor would be on the POKEY channel and not the main one, but swapping that took care of the 7800's native sound output configuration to an acceptable level... I think...

 

...Is there anything else I could try before unscrewing the Concerto cartridge?  

 

Thanks!

 

 

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well both the TIA and the POKEY do have resistors on their output lines. The difference is that they aren't the same value resistors. The POKEY's resistor value is only 6.8k while the TIA resistor value is 18k. So as a result the TIA audio requires more drop to bring in balance. Without this, the TIA will nearly always overpower the POKEY and thus the pokey will be difficult to hear compared to the TIA or perhaps even silent as a result.

 

 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

44 minutes ago, -^CrossBow^- said:

Well both the TIA and the POKEY do have resistors on their output lines. The difference is that they aren't the same value resistors. The POKEY's resistor value is only 6.8k while the TIA resistor value is 18k. So as a result the TIA audio requires more drop to bring in balance. Without this, the TIA will nearly always overpower the POKEY and thus the pokey will be difficult to hear compared to the TIA or perhaps even silent as a result.

 

 

 

Cool. :) 

 

Things get more curious -- I checked out Ballblazer again and, this time, it worked.  Apart from some random popping noises, but nothing significant... Will see if I can find other posts with people having similar problems. 

 

Yet Commando still does not.  After yelling pointlessly at the TV, I looked up Atarimania and downloaded Commando.  That worked.  Still scratching my head enough to fill an 8oz glass with dandruff, but it's working.   Am wondering if there's a bug in the rom files I had.  Owning the carts definitely helps troubleshooting faster, that's for sure.

 

I might remove that newly-moved resistor, since the TIA sounds are now slightly quieter than the HOKEY/POKEY ones, since hearing the character get riddled with bullets is fun...  (Goota admit, Atari allowing up to 6 sounds with POKEY + TIA was a good move, but the implementation was still, um, hokey...)

 

But am happy to report all is well. 

 

I won't need to open Concerto at all, woohoo!

 

My other 7800 probably has the same issue. Will verify its setup and remove any resistors from the POKEY connection accordingly...

 

Thanks for your help!  :) 

 

 

 

Edited by CommodoreDecker
  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Fun side note:  My other 7800 - amusingly, has a different AV mod.  Glaringly, the pokey output is soldered across two resistors (?!!), rather than the top of C10 where it should go (per RetroFixes' own documentation.)  Should be an easy fix...

20230423_161403.jpg

20230423_161502.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, CommodoreDecker said:

Fun side note:  My other 7800 - amusingly, has a different AV mod.

Looking at it, it's a different layout but completely equivalent to the other one.  Neat that it's small enough to fit on top of the expansion port shield.

2 hours ago, CommodoreDecker said:

Glaringly, the pokey output is soldered across two resistors (?!!), rather than the top of C10 where it should go (per RetroFixes' own documentation.)  Should be an easy fix...

Yeah, it looks like someone decided to just bridge the TIA and POKEY audio and skip adding resistors altogether.  That's not gonna work so well ;)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

29 minutes ago, DrVenkman said:

This really isn’t firmware-specific. You should move this discussion to a better thread, like this one:

 

 

 

Agreed and My apologies. I'm going to send him a PM with more specifics on the audio issues he is having...

 

 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

@batari is there any update on having POKEY available on 48K roms (like DangerZone). If there is a software change to improve compatibility, let me know, I'll be happy to implement that.

 

I plan to start offering my ROMs soon and I don't want Concerto users to miss out on Bobby's fantastic DangerZone sound track.

  • Like 6
Link to comment
Share on other sites

14 hours ago, Muddyfunster said:

@batari is there any update on having POKEY available on 48K roms (like DangerZone). If there is a software change to improve compatibility, let me know, I'll be happy to implement that.

Concerto currently supports POKEY@4000 only, instead of @450, for ROMs that are 32k or 48k (non-bankswitching), similar to Ballblazer.

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 4 weeks later...

Just updated my firmware the other day for the first time in awhile.

 

I was unable to use the Mac harmony software, it never detected my cartridge. I think it may have been something with the driver software and the version of Mac OS I run since the new Mac OS really don’t like kernel extensions.

 

It worked from my girlfriend’s laptop though.

 

I used Roms from Trebor’s rom pack and had the following issues.

 

1.Rampage (AB) would not load at all. Loading color flashes happened and then the screen just went black.

 

2. Tower Toppler still crashes but not on the menu anymore. The menu seems to work, audio plays correctly. Some minor graphical corruption. When the game itself starts it almost immediately freezes and the graphics become partly corrupted and it makes a horrible sound like it did before on the menu.

 

3. Pete Rose Baseball loads the menu screen but doesn’t respond at all to any inputs.

 

Didn’t get a chance to test Alien Brigade. Previously it had not worked at all for me on some patches and had intermittently had the stutters motion of the alien hand on startup that other folks had also noticed.

 

All other homebrew and retail games I tried worked fine. The menu text looked slightly more gray rather than white than I remember it being but that might have been my brother’s retrotink and the settings of his tv. I usually play on a crt.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

8 hours ago, Lord_of_Sipan said:

Just updated my firmware the other day for the first time in awhile.

Which version did you try to update to?

8 hours ago, Lord_of_Sipan said:

I was unable to use the Mac harmony software, it never detected my cartridge. I think it may have been something with the driver software and the version of Mac OS I run since the new Mac OS really don’t like kernel extensions.

By any chance is you Mac an M1/M2 and your girlfriend's an Intel?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, x=usr(1536) said:

Which version did you try to update to?

By any chance is you Mac an M1/M2 and your girlfriend's an Intel?

I tried updating to the version linked from the 7800 dev site.

 

My Mac is an M1 Mac mini. My girlfriend has a windows laptop.

 

Edit-Just to clarify an older version of the mac harmony software worked fine with my Mac. I can’t remember what version it was though and I am unable to find the software on my machine. I recently had to have the computer serviced and moved things onto external drives.

Edited by Lord_of_Sipan
Link to comment
Share on other sites

6 hours ago, Lord_of_Sipan said:

I tried updating to the version linked from the 7800 dev site.

Indeed, the Atari 7800 8BitDev.org page for the Concerto provides a download link for the latest firmware.

 

image.png.1c94eed67a0cc21835334006e503b7ec.png

 

The latest (30723) firmware is best for those with an OEM POKEY installed.

 

However, the next to most recent (30323) is best for those with a HOKEY.

 

Mention earlier in another post:

 

"Per Fred, the difference between the firmware posted on 30323 and 30723, is the following:

Version 30723:  "This version rolls back most the changes that helped HOKEY compatibility but hurt POKEY compatibility."

 

Therefore, in general, if a Concerto has a HOKEY installed, the 30323 file posted is likely the better choice.

If a Concerto has a POKEY installed, the 30723 file posted is likely best."

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...