Atari Mega STE

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This is not my actual configuration anymore, you can go and see this new MegaSTE with an AlberTT graphic card on the VME port and a FPU 68882 that I'm currently using.

The informations about the old configuration can still answer some of your questions!


Long time after my first ST, I had a STE then a Mega STE...
  1. Computer Mega STE, 4Mb RAM, DD720kb
  2. Syquest 44Mo, removable disk
  3. CD Rom CDAR Atari disk drive, speed x1! With remote.
  4. Hard disk SCSI, partition C: and two more partitions for the Spectre GCR
  5. SVGA monitor on Nova board, max 800x600x16bits
  6. Drive ZIP 100Mo
  7. Emulator Macintosh Spectre GCR
  8. Sound output stereo, 8 bits, 50KHz
  9. Emulator PC XT Supercharger
  10. Sound output for ST Replay 16 card
  11. Keyboard TT compatible
  12. ST Mouse

What's in the box? What do I do with it?

As soon as I saw my friend's ST running, I loved it. At the time, we were using old 8 bit machineswith a built in basic, 64kb and a tape recorder. In december '86, I got my first STF: 512Kb, floppy disk drive,that was more than enough for me! I remember having bought 3 floppies saying to myself: "they'll last for years!".I started with ST Basic, then the GFA one.Step by step, I came to program with MadMac in assembler and made my own FORTH interpreter/Compiler that I still use nowdays.
Go to the download page to get those programs I made (MP_STE video player/maker, FORTHSTE)

What's in the box?
  1. CPU Motorola 68000 at 16 MHz, cache
  2. System GEM in Rom
  3. Simms ram from 512kb up to 4Mb
  4. Video modes 320x200x16, 640x200x4 ou 640x400xmono, 4096 colors
  5. hardscroll pixel by pixel in every direction
  6. blitter to speed up bloc operations on screen
  7. DMA connector (HD, laser, SCSI interface, etc...)
  8. one //, 3 serials up to 115200 bauds
  9. mouse, joystick and two joypads
  10. MIDI interface
  11. ROM connector for cartridges (soun cards, TV caupture, emulators, etc...)
  12. VME interface for ram expansions or graphic cards.
What do I do with it?


Let's start with the desktop

Icons colored by Color_Mste the desk resolution is 640x480 in High Color, 16 bits thanks to theNova Graphic board on the VME slot.
You can see my favorite links: to the Forth, the Assembler and various multimedia tools.It's a new feature that came with the TOS 2.0x.

Programmation

As I do on the TT, I mainly use the assembler (with Assemble from Brainstorm) and my ownport of the Forth language.

Use of a french Encyclopedia

Totally written in assembler, ENCYCLO, my modest driver version for the CD "Mon Encyclopédie".
Access can be alphabetic, thematic, by medias, with a quizz and a search tool.
Video display is allowed if you use M_Player (on TT/Falcon) or MP_STE on 68000 machines.

Replay/Convert a video

Go to this page about the video player and converter MP_STE

The adaptation of M_Player to 68000 machines is called MP_STE.It replays AVI, MOV, FLI/FLC, GIFs and various other Atari motion formats.It has been optimized for standard graphic modes on ST and does not yet support the Nova Display at the time.There's on option to convert a PC animation in FLM format so it it displayed very smoothly on every ST(e).

Integrated Office Software

The "all in one" Atari Works, never ended, no color support, but with every basic function needed.Word processor with SpeedoGDOS fonts, spreadsheet, database and GDOS printing.
A good point is that it's fast enough on a Mega STE.

Image Processing

Vision, excellent program. But running on a 16 MHz 68000, you have to be patient.Despite, every essential function to process True Color images is supported.

Sound Processing

With the ST Replay 16 sound card plugged in, you get a sound input!Digitization is in 16 bits, but only one mono channel.
When capturing a video with the TT, I use this card on a slave Mega STE to get the sound track.Have a look at this!

Mac Emulation: SPECTRE GCR

Here is the Spectre GCR cartridge that turns your ST into a MacPlus with4Mb RAM, 16 MHz processor, a hard drive, a 800k floppy unit and enhanced graphic capabilities.Yet on a standard ST you get 640x400, but with the Nova board resolutions such as 800x600 or 1024x768become accessible. The Mac running System 6, we can see Excel, Claris Works and the tools bars of MacPaint. Resolution was 640x480 for this capture.

PC emulation: VORTEX ATonce 386/16
Thanks to Jacques C. from Belgium for the gift!

Interesting card, from 3 to 4 times faster than the Supercharger (see below), extended memory support, Windows 3.1 in 386 mode, floating point unit i387.For now, I've been able to run it with floppies, not with a hard drive.
Here is how to install it: on this first picture, locate the CPU MC68000. You have to gently unplug it because this is where your Vortex ATONCE 386/16 will take place.
Then you plug your MC68000 onto the Vortex board, and plug the Vortex onto the original CPU location.
When it's done, you get exactly what's shown on this second picture:

More PC emulation: the Supercharger.


Internal hard drive installation.
Thanks to Jacques C. from Belgium for the gift!

For you, unluckies, that only got an OPEN Mega STE, you have to add a hard disk controller to be able to put a hard drive into your Atari. On the rear right side of the mother board, next to the floppy connector, you'll find the HD connector. Put your controller here, and if it's correctly done, the left end of this board comes over a screw to maintain it.
The DIP switches allows you to set the SCSI ID, I put 0.
Then with a short SCSI connector, you can plug your HD, you'll find a free power cable next to the power unit.
The cover is a problem: you should change it because nothing was provided to fix a HD on it, and its thickness makes it impossible to close it over the drive. I cut the lower parts of it: this makes some useful holes to evacuate heat. Then, with wire, I fixed my HD, not so beautiful, but safe and working.


15 décembre 2007