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View Full Version : Spectrum Owners (This is the coolest thing I've ever seen)



readboy
11-02-10, 05:51
On this link is a demo of a utility called k7zx, it allows spectrum games to be loaded into real hardware from an MP3 player in under 10 seconds. Best of all it's an entirely software based solution.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TkSb9upLpXM

For the software download goto

http://personal.auna.com/casariche/k7zx4/k7zx4.htm

Anyone know if solutions like this exist for C64 / Atari 800 ?
:DKB

miner2049er
11-02-10, 07:07
I've heard of people having limited success with it so far but if it wokrs well it would be cool and save having easy access to hundreds of cassettes.

andyuk
11-02-10, 10:50
Didn't Codemasters try something similar with CD burst loading eons ago? Ran through the Kempston interface if I remember?

Nice idea all the same.. Indexing could be a damn nightmare though with 200+ roms/mp3's on even the smallest of MP3 players.

Though, it's sorta like owning a cd or LP , it's more for the experience than anything else. Flipping through cover art, back stories, dribs and drabs of band info that you miss when it's a speccytrons on an mp3 player. I'd sooner own that wonderful Sabre Wulf box with the tape than the rom on Mp3. Or 'Elite' with it's Dark Wheel/manual/star chart box..

Now if he could get that principle and apply it to +3 disk access, which was woefull, THAT'D be something.

readboy
12-02-10, 09:36
I did get my rubber keyed 48k Speccy out last night to try this properly. Unfortunately my MP3 player lacked the volume to get a load working. But direct from my laptop headphone socket, manic miner / jetpac loaded in under 10 seconds. I've not played these games on real hardware for a decade or so. So from my point of view it's a great success.

Another factor in making this approach desirable is the ability to convert homebrew titles that were never released in physical format to run on real hardware.

I do take your point andyuk, I love collecting the real thing but my time is limited and 5 minute load times puts me off playing these games on real hardware.
It's much easier to plug a NES cart in and play, this puts the speccy back on the field of play as far as I'm concerned.

andyuk
12-02-10, 08:24
Oh no, I'm not knocking the procedure don't get me wrong. You'd have to use an mp3 player with a screen to use this properly. In conjunction with a Itouch or Ipod this would be cool.. scroll, press, 10 seconds and done.. at least you could 'see' what your'e loading.

It's the indexing of all those games on the mp3 player that I have issues with, but that's always been the way. heh It's become a C90 again. Rewind, rewind, test..... KKKKKKKK.. Nope. Fast forward.. test. KKKKkkkkKKKKKKKk.. nope.. hehe..

Ahhh remembering the days!!.. DAMN YOU!!!!!.. ;)

Nice to see all these new techniques after all this time.. Wonder if this would work on a Sinclair/Timex US machine?

readboy
13-02-10, 09:33
Ah the bootleg C90's, now that does bring back memories.

miner2049er
13-02-10, 10:23
Remember C15s?

andyuk
13-02-10, 07:43
C15's.. OOOh the ones from WHSmiths in a nice silver case.. heh.. Mind you saying that, trying to copy a 11th generation copy of a copy of a copy onto one was a pain in the ass..

Oh, and who was the person in your group of friends who all of a sudden became popular because of his double tape deck boom box/ghetto blaster??? High speed dubbing !!!!! heh

miner2049er
13-02-10, 10:10
Haha! High Speed Dubbing. My 1531 wouldn't load games that were dubbed at high speed though.

Plain old boring real time pirating for me............

readboy
15-02-10, 11:01
High speed pirating, another reason why the speccy was better than the commode. (Lights blue touch paper and returns to a safe distance).

F-zero
23-02-10, 07:26
Me and my friends have been trying this and its hit and miss, more miss than hit actually.
This is the way to do it:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jHMZhS_qw4E

F-zero
13-03-10, 06:16
This is just an update to the thread.
My friend did a little more work on the settings (K7zx) and i combined this with another idea.

All the mp3 players i tried didn't have sufficent volume for the speccy to work so i burned all the games (in wave format) to create an audio cd.
I tried a couple of portable cd players first, one wouldn't work at all and the other had a 50% success rate.
I then used a bigger player, the type you can still move around that has speakers etc and achieved a success rate of around 90%
I still have to test the very fast load against the medium speed and try different rom sets on those games that didn't work but this is a good solution.

Manic Miner loaded in 15 seconds and the longest wait i had was 30 seconds.
Obviously you can skip to any game just as you would skip through the tracks on a cd.

So give it a go, this will only work on spectrums that don't have an inbuilt cassette deck.
I tested on a 48k rubber key using a mono lead.

If anybody wants to give it a try or needs help with settings let me know.

andyuk
13-03-10, 08:05
So this program takes a prior converted snap or tzx and burst loads it.. The program that converts the .wav, is it a fixed bit rate?? would increasing the quality of the mp3 help any?? At least then in you DO amplify your'e not amplifying the noise associated with it?

Any further news? I read on the ytube post you originally dropped that the authors on the alt.sinclair newsgroup and is currently working on better docs. ?

kinda cool.. :)

I know you said you cant use the inbuilt tape deck? whats the reason there? Could you record these <back> to tape and use the inbuilt tape deck on plus2's or an external oldschool tape deck ? for that extra bit of authenticity.

F-zero
14-03-10, 05:51
So this program takes a prior converted snap or tzx and burst loads it.. The program that converts the .wav, is it a fixed bit rate?? would increasing the quality of the mp3 help any?? At least then in you DO amplify your'e not amplifying the noise associated with it?

Any further news? I read on the ytube post you originally dropped that the authors on the alt.sinclair newsgroup and is currently working on better docs. ?

kinda cool.. :)

I know you said you cant use the inbuilt tape deck? whats the reason there? Could you record these <back> to tape and use the inbuilt tape deck on plus2's or an external oldschool tape deck ? for that extra bit of authenticity.

The program converts straight to wave, you don't have to use the mp3 option.
And yes, there are various bitrates you can choose.

The reason i said you can't use the inbuilt tape deck is the sound tends to degrade upon recording, i'm sure you can get some of the games to load but having not tested it i can't be sure.
You could just convert the tzx,etc to uncompressed wave (non fast load) and record to tape, that will definitely work.

The +2 and +3 don't have a line in so you can't use a cd player or stereo system to imput the wave file, that was the reason i said the cd player won't work on those spectrums.