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Pi Pico[W] Peripheral Expansion Box Side Port Device


JasonACT

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I've not seen any weird things happening recently with my Pi Pico PEB device, so I guess it can be classified now as BETA, and I can release the code.  Being BETA, please don't trust your data will be safe with this device.

 

Find attached an archive of my development directory, read the PPEB2.ino file (the main Arduino C file) for some details.  There's a pre-built PPEB2.ino.uf2 file which can be dragged to a Pi PicoW drive in boot mode (mounted to your PC) for programming.  There are gerber files there too, that I had sent off to have the latest board made, along with a list of components needed to build it, listed in the .ino file.

 

image.thumb.jpeg.9b4e82aa9766235f5b4a83493021f4cd.jpeg

PPEB2.zip

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2 minutes ago, Vorticon said:

Oh wow! Is the TIPI fully implemented on that device as well? Does the Pcode emulation fully  work with TIPI DSK folders (this requires that the TIPI be at a CRU of 1100?

Are you planning to offer kits for sale? 

Partially* I guess.  PCode requires disk sector access - and disk images work fairly well in my testing, but it won't work with SD Card folders.

 

*Not compatible with an actual TIPI.  Don't use this with a TIPI, or 32KB expansion device, or SAMs device etc.  You may find it works OK with a TI disk controller... and/or RS232 card...  If you compile your own, turning off some of my RS232 features.

 

And No, sadly.  Living in Australia, it doesn't make sense for me to build these to post to the other side of the world for way more than the $30 price they should cost to build.

 

This is designed to be dirt cheap, like the Pi Pico.

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Hi Jason,

I am still working on a Pico board for the side port but I am far too busy with my other projects (Ternary CPU), as I am from Sydney, I am glad you're only 2 hrs away, so getting one of your boards would be a easy transport. I haven't finished my workshop yet, so I am just gathering a lot of parts, materials and prototypes into project cartons, I hope to start a channel etc when I am done. It is great to see another user go for this board, it has so much potential for the TI99. I will be following your progress keenly, Regards Arto.

Edited by Artoj
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5 minutes ago, RickyDean said:

@JasonACT I bought a package of 4 pi pico W's from Amazon, but they look slightly different from your picture you posted. Here is the link. Can you tell me if they'll still work?

They are the right board, but they have pins soldered in...  You can do one of two things, remove the pins by removing the plastic and desoldering each pin one by one, OR you might be able to solder some cut-up IC sockets to the circuit board (bending those socket pins to 90 degrees) and be able to insert/remove the Pi Pico whenever you like.

 

Having the socket isn't a bad idea, you might socket the other 4 DIP chips too which would be nice, but I just wanted the cheapest way forward so I didn't bother.

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1 minute ago, JasonACT said:

They are the right board, but they have pins soldered in...  You can do one of two things, remove the pins by removing the plastic and desoldering each pin one by one, OR you might be able to solder some cut-up IC sockets to the circuit board (bending those socket pins to 90 degrees) and be able to insert/remove the Pi Pico whenever you like.

 

Having the socket isn't a bad idea, you might socket the other 4 DIP chips too which would be nice, but I just wanted the cheapest way forward so I didn't bother.

Okay, I wanted to be sure, I'm ordering the boards soon and my plan was to do the second option you mentioned on mounting it. I like to have my stuff removable if possible, in case I have to test and repair. The look of the pico was just somewhat different than your picture.

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1 hour ago, RickyDean said:

@JasonACTGot it. The transistors and the 3 pins were throwing me off a bit. Thanks

I've updated a couple of things since the first post, not sure I can still edit it to upload a new archive, let me know if/when you have it running and I'll try (nothing updated is all that important - 1 extra feature, one small bugfix [in the .DSK selector screen] and some typos in the doco).

 

1 hour ago, RickyDean said:

I'm ordering the boards soon

If it helps, these are the specs I used when ordering:

PCBOrder.png

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 1/1/2024 at 1:26 AM, JasonACT said:

My holiday (the month of December) has come to an end, and I'm back to work tomorrow...  I did find a few things that needed fixing, so here's a small patch (2 source files and a pre-compiled .uf2 file to drag to a PC mounted Pi Pico to program it).

PPEB2a.zip 444.49 kB · 7 downloads

Okay, I've gotten my PCB's in and I have built my first one. Do I just hook up the Pico W and move the files over as your post suggest? Or do I use the Thonny IDE or some other IDE to programm it.

20240104_175918a.jpg

20240104_175906a.jpg

20240104_175913a.jpg

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6 hours ago, RickyDean said:

Okay, I've gotten my PCB's in and I have built my first one. Do I just hook up the Pico W and move the files over as your post suggest? Or do I use the Thonny IDE or some other IDE to programm it.

With it *not* plugged into the TI, sitting freely on the desk, plug a USB cable into it and your PC while pressing the BOOTSEL button.  That will mount it as a USB drive on the PC and you just drag over the latest .uf2 file onto that drive...  and you're done programming it.

 

Make sure the SD card is formatted (FAT32) and copy the .ROM/GRM and edited autoload.cfg (for your WiFi) files over (and blnk.dsk, if you want to try the RAMDISK).  You might like to copy over some cartridge .BIN files also, put them in the root or a folder of their own.

 

Unplug it from the PC and plug it into the TI and in TI BASIC "CALL TIPI" to bring up the menu.

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53 minutes ago, JasonACT said:

With it *not* plugged into the TI, sitting freely on the desk, plug a USB cable into it and your PC while pressing the BOOTSEL button.  That will mount it as a USB drive on the PC and you just drag over the latest .uf2 file onto that drive...  and you're done programming it.

 

Make sure the SD card is formatted (FAT32) and copy the .ROM/GRM and edited autoload.cfg (for your WiFi) files over (and blnk.dsk, if you want to try the RAMDISK).  You might like to copy over some cartridge .BIN files also, put them in the root or a folder of their own.

 

Unplug it from the PC and plug it into the TI and in TI BASIC "CALL TIPI" to bring up the menu.

Does the whole original zipped file get unpacked onto the SD card? Does it have to reside there, on the root, to include the programming files like, spchroms.cpp? I've tried copying the  files in the picture and I have some cartridges in TI and some disks in Disks. When I plug the unit into the TI and turn on the power button, it comes up with a Cyan screen for a couple of seconds then the title screen, then I can go into TI Basic, but when I type in call tipi, I get a bad name error. So, I've either not setting it up right or, have issues with my build. I've edited the autoload with the wifi info and changed the country code to XX, and uncommented the cart line and typed in the name of an extended basic cart, TIXB.rpk. No joy.

Disk.jpg

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You'd be right, I thought I'd ordered 74HC138' but hadn't. So I thought for testing a 74Ls138 would work, just for trying it. Those HC's are ordered, will get them Monday. Also miss ordered .01uf for C1, instead of 1uf, so their coming at the same time. No the light never flashes. Thanks, and I will wait for the IC's. Have a good night.

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@RickyDean Thanks, I will :)

 

You have more than enough files on the SD card too for the LED to flash, so something might still be wrong (you can delete the .a99 and .dip files - BTW the .dip is the DipTrace [free software] circuit board software I used, in case anyone wants to extend/change it).

 

I noticed you were missing the 1uF - but I don't think it would really matter for testing, so I didn't mention it.  The SD card slot is slightly different to mine though, are you sure the pins are correctly aligned (did your socket have the same number of pins)?  If not, that might be why the LED doesn't flash?

 

Also, yesterday, I built another unit with sockets - just for kicks - and with my latest build here, it fails JediMatt's SAMS memory test...  I'm using an ESP-PSRAM64H 8MB chip on that board and it turns out it only works up to 132MHz (Pi Pico overclocked to 264MHz) and not the 133MHz stated in the specs...  Or 135MHz slight overclock I'm using here...  I'm having a love/hate relationship with that company, a lot of their stuff is good but some is just bad.

 

On the other hand, I've built quite a lot of slack into this design, and it will run properly with the Pi Pico overclocked to "just above 250MHz" (125MHz for the PSRAM) which is what I did most of my development with, until is started to show issues and I knew it needed a slightly faster clock.

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Posted (edited)

@RickyDean One more thing, if the SD card slot you're using is correctly aligned then you might want to try with a known higher quality SD card - since my build here is using a 45MHz SPI frequency...  Not all SD cards will work at that speed, and if it fails to mount, then you won't see the LED flash. 

 

Edit: or flash the Pi Pico with this fail-safe version (26MHz for the SD card and 130MHz for the PSRAM).

PPEB2.ino.uf2.zip

Edited by JasonACT
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11 hours ago, JasonACT said:

@RickyDean One more thing, if the SD card slot you're using is correctly aligned then you might want to try with a known higher quality SD card - since my build here is using a 45MHz SPI frequency...  Not all SD cards will work at that speed, and if it fails to mount, then you won't see the LED flash. 

 

Edit: or flash the Pi Pico with this fail-safe version (26MHz for the SD card and 130MHz for the PSRAM).

PPEB2.ino.uf2.zip 378.78 kB · 1 download

As far as I can tell, the SD card slot is in a good position, I'll try another SD card soon, these were PNY 32gb cards from Amazon. My IC's will be here tomorrow according to FedEx, so that will help too.

Tried your new file, still no flashes. At this moment I'm assuming it's due to the 74LS138 IC.

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3 hours ago, RickyDean said:

Tried your new file, still no flashes. At this moment I'm assuming it's due to the 74LS138 IC.

Using a 74LS138 won't affect the LED.  It should immediately flash briefly when being powered up, either via the TI when plugged in or the PC's USB port when sitting freely on the desk (with BOOTSEL not being pressed).  The 2 slightly thicker traces on the circuit board for the SD socket are Ground and +3.3v, it might be worth checking they are going to the correct pads of the SD card.

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1 hour ago, JasonACT said:

Using a 74LS138 won't affect the LED.  It should immediately flash briefly when being powered up, either via the TI when plugged in or the PC's USB port when sitting freely on the desk (with BOOTSEL not being pressed).  The 2 slightly thicker traces on the circuit board for the SD socket are Ground and +3.3v, it might be worth checking they are going to the correct pads of the SD card.

Here is the pin out for this card slot, does it line up with your design? If not, can you give me a part number for the type you used? Thanks

SD card pin out.jpg

Edited by RickyDean
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