[Coco] The BIGGEST PROBLEM with (So-Called) NEW CoCo Hardware...

David Ladd davidwladd at gmail.com
Sun Mar 5 13:03:42 EST 2017

On Sun, Mar 5, 2017 at 7:45 AM, Joe Schutts via Coco <coco at maltedmedia.com>

> Hi Everyone,
> I have been involved with the CoCo since the CoCo 1 came out after I
> switched over from an old Altair 8080 (I got tired of throwing switches).
> There has been a large uptake of (So Called) NEW hardware MOD's out there
> for the CoCo but there is a major problem with most of them. That problem
> is that most of these "NEW" Hardware MOD's require OLDER hardware than is
> available in many cases. Let me give you some examples.
> 1. Some people are making CoCo Video Adapters that use a VGA adapter for
> monitors while many of the newer TV's tend to require an HDMI adapter for
> their input. Why not design an HDMI adapter instead?

​There is also a alternative option of building a SCART cable and using a
SCART to HDMI box for this.  For those that have gone this route is
probably one of the easier routes.

I myself use a RGB to S-Video adapter board that Ed Snider put together so
I can use my video capture board for YouTubing my CoCo's.  As most HDMI
capture devices have a 2 to 4 second encode time I opted to go with
something that had little to no processing time so I could see what I was
playing or doing on the CoCo through my capture device, but that is my
requirements though.​

> 2. Others are making MIDI adapters that use the older (round 5-PIN Serial
> Port) adapters when more of the modern MIDI keyboards (especially the
> cheaper keyboards) are switching over to the NEWER USB-B adapters. Granted
> that the HIGHER END keyboards tend to stay with the older 5-PIN adapters.
> Why not make an adapter that uses BOTH connectors?

> 3. Others have made Hard Drive adapters that use the older SCSI or MFM or
> even IDE Hard Drives for storage. Has anyone tried to buy a "NEW" SCSI or
> MFM or even an IDE Hard Drive recently? Does anyone even know WHAT the
> "MFM" stood for? Not only are they getting harder and harder to find, but
> getting one that "ISN'T" Re-Conditioned is darn near impossible. Why not
> design a Hard Drive adapter that uses a SATA connector? At least it would
> be whole lot easier to find a NEW Hard Drive for it and probably cheaper
> too.

​Well the MFM drives is true you can't get new for.  As far as the IDE
there are places that still sell new ones, but might be a little big for
the CoCo.

We do have some alternate devices for using (micro)SD(HC) cards now.  The
SuperIDE uses both IDE and CompactFlash drives and you can get microSD(HC)
to CompactFlash adapters very easily.

As other people have stated you can also use the IDE (PATA) to SATA
adapters for using a SATA drive on a IDE(PATA) controller.

Also for the older retro systems as far as SCSI goes there is also the
SCSI2SD project that allows you to use a microSD(HC) card in place of the
older SCSI hard drives.  This is what I am using on my MM/1.​

> 4. Then there is the OLD Serial Port "Printer" adapters. How many of you
> CoCo users out there STILL have an OLD Serial Port Printer? Why not build a
> NEW "USB" Printer Port adapter so we can use our Ink Jet or Laser
> Printers??? Does anyplace even sell fanfold paper anymore? Probably not.
> This is something I would buy in a second. Right now I have to send any
> file I want to print from the CoCo to my PC and print from the PC (which is
> a PAIN IN THE "You know where").

​As far as printers yes that can be a interesting challenge, but multiple
ways to get around that.  Some of the new receipt printers still have a
serial port on them.

As some have stated there is also DriveWire when under OS-9 to send your
printer output from the CoCo to the system connected to the printer.

There are also serial to TCP bridges as well that you could use.  Or even
build your own Raspberry Pi cups box and using a USB RS232-serial adapter
connected to the bitbanger port, or MAX232 chip to convert the TTL signals
on the onboard 2 pin serial to RS232-serial  and capturing the bitbanger
output and sending it out cups to print.

There are many options.

> I'm sure others will find something I missed and add to the list. Let me
> know what you think of this...
> Take care...
> Joe...
> --
> Coco mailing list
> Coco at maltedmedia.com
> https://pairlist5.pair.net/mailman/listinfo/coco

| David Ladd a.k.a. PacoOtaktay a.k.a. Drencor                          |
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| Do you have your CoCo 3 yet?                                          |


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