Author Topic: Elektor EC-6809  (Read 2657 times)

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Offline Wawavoun

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Elektor EC-6809
« on: July 24, 2021, 03:38:40 pm »
Hello there !

I try to run again Flex09 and of course first of all I must build a computer 6809 based for that.

My first choice is the Elektor system named EC-68 or sometime EC-6809 published in "Elektor Computing 3" in 1985 and in french in october 1986 number.

I need two things :

- on side of the ext pcb (video + floppy interface) was not given. If anybody has a good picture ? But nevertheless this can be solved because in put the pcb again in Kicad so... Routing will be different but if there is no other choice !

- More important : this system require two 2716 and one 2732 eproms (Elektor ref ESS540, 541 and 542). This is boot prom, assist09 and character generator. The fist one is really a problem. Assist09 is on the internet so... and the character generator eprom is probably the same that the one in the Junior Computer VDU board which I have.

Many thanks to anybody which will give any information about that.

If there is somewhere another design able to do the same (run Flex09 from real floppy) I will also be interested !

Regards.
Philippe
« Last Edit: July 24, 2021, 04:36:59 pm by Wawavoun »
 

Offline Wawavoun

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Re: Elektor EC-6809
« Reply #1 on: October 21, 2021, 09:11:35 am »
Hello,

Some news from this project :

The two boards are manufactured and tested.
The CPU board is working with a modified Assist09 monitor.
The interface board video part is working with a modified character generator coming from the Junior Computer. The floppy interface part have not been tested yet.

I renew my call for any information about the ESS-540 and ESS-541 eprom (dump, listing, asm source..., whatever you have).
If anybody have this system or can help in this topic please take contact !

Regards.
Philippe
 
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Offline granzeier

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Re: Elektor EC-6809
« Reply #2 on: October 22, 2021, 12:05:15 pm »
Those boards look well done. It looks like it will be a nice system.

You say that you are missing the boot EPROM, but the pictures show that your system is running. What are you using to boot? Are you just using a generic boot, or are you getting the system up some other way?
 

Offline Wawavoun

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Re: Elektor EC-6809
« Reply #3 on: October 22, 2021, 12:26:18 pm »
Re,

Yes thats need some clarifications.

The eprom which really do the boot is called "monitor rom" by Elektor in the article (ref ESS-540).
At this place I have a modified assit09 monitor, so my system boot.

What they call "boot rom" ESS-541 is a collection of subroutines doing various jobs related to the // keyboard, the floppy interface and the video.

This name probably come because one these subroutine boot Flex from the floppy.
This eprom is the one that really miss to get a full working system...

Regards.
Philippe
 
 

Offline granzeier

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Re: Elektor EC-6809
« Reply #4 on: October 22, 2021, 02:38:44 pm »
I see, thanks.

I have several Elektor/Elector (USA, UK, India) and have been looking to see if I can find any more info about this, but nothing yet. I'll keep looking.
 

Offline coromonadalix

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Re: Elektor EC-6809
« Reply #5 on: November 25, 2021, 03:38:52 am »
 

Offline ozcar

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Re: Elektor EC-6809
« Reply #6 on: November 25, 2021, 06:06:25 am »
I still have the English language Elektor mags from that era. I don’t recall that a 6809-based system was ever published in those, and I can see no such thing in the cumulative indexes for ‘84 ‘85, ‘86 or ‘87. Those eprom numbers, 540, 541 and 542 don’t show up on the readers services pages either.

If you can’t find them anywhere, it would probably not take much to write your own routines – from what I can remember Flex does not require much to get it going. I butchered a SWTPC monitor to get Flex to run on a system which had an unusual parallel-attached keyboard and 6545 CRT controller. I still have the code for the 6545, but I can’t remember now how different that was to the 6845 that is on your board.
 

Online SiliconWizard

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Re: Elektor EC-6809
« Reply #7 on: November 26, 2021, 01:15:44 am »
The french Elektor web site has the article: https://www.elektormagazine.fr/magazine/elektor-198610/52873/
I have no clue whether this appeared in Elektor magazines other than the french version.
 

Offline ozcar

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Re: Elektor EC-6809
« Reply #8 on: November 26, 2021, 02:13:16 am »
The french Elektor web site has the article: https://www.elektormagazine.fr/magazine/elektor-198610/52873/
I have no clue whether this appeared in Elektor magazines other than the french version.

I was able to download the article from there (I’m still an Elektor subscriber), but by the sound of it, Wawavoun managed to get hold of that.

If the article did not appear in all Elektor editions, (and as I said, I could not locate it in the English one), then it is going to take more luck to find somebody who can help out with the eproms.
 

Offline coromonadalix

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Re: Elektor EC-6809
« Reply #9 on: November 26, 2021, 09:13:44 pm »
Choose you year and month       here ya go

Freeeeee   no registration

https://worldradiohistory.com/INTERNATIONAL/Elektor-FR.htm
 
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Offline cfbsoftware

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Re: Elektor EC-6809
« Reply #10 on: November 27, 2021, 02:09:27 am »
What they call "boot rom" ESS-541 is a collection of subroutines doing various jobs related to the // keyboard, the floppy interface and the video.
It's related to a different system but somebody in this discussion may be able to help you:
6809 and FLEX
https://stardot.org.uk/forums/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=9114
Chris Burrows
CFB Software
https://www.astrobe.com
 
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Online SiliconWizard

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Re: Elektor EC-6809
« Reply #11 on: November 27, 2021, 05:35:43 pm »
Just as a side thought, the 6809 didn't nearly get the popularity it deserved. Possibly because it appeared too late, and the 8-bit market was already saturated.

From my experience, it looks like the 6809 got somewhat more popular in France than in the US, for instance, which can explain the number of french projects using it, and the whole series of the Thomson home computers (and a few other computers of the time!)

As to french magazines, a number of key ones in the 80s got their own project using the 6809. So, apart from Elektor, there was at least:

- "Le Haut Parleur", with the "Tavernier 6809"; http://silicium.org/site/index.php/catalogue/28-catalogue/france/41-tavernier-6809
- "Led", with the more humble "Microkit 09". http://www.retronik.fr/revues/led/1983/LED011_10-1983.pdf

For the record, it was this series in the "Led" magazine - ran over a few editions in late 1983 and 1984 - that really got me as a kid into electronics and computer design.

Anyone interested can find archives of many french magazines here: http://www.retronik.fr/revues/
 

Offline m k

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Re: Elektor EC-6809
« Reply #12 on: November 28, 2021, 02:41:25 pm »
Is it possible Acorn 6809 relative?
 

Offline ozcar

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Re: Elektor EC-6809
« Reply #13 on: November 28, 2021, 07:56:59 pm »
Is it possible Acorn 6809 relative?

There certainly are similarities, in that both apparently used parallel-attached keyboards (and there was me thinking that my parallel-attached keyboard was unusual), and both had 6845-based CRT controllers (optional on the Acorn system?). Could be differences in the system memory map, but the Acrorn monitor might be able to be adapted for use on the Elektor system. It would at least give a good starting point if the Elektor monitor can’t be found

I see there is a listing of the Acorn monitor in the user manual, here:

https://chrisacorns.computinghistory.org.uk/docs/Acorn/Manuals/Acorn_6809UM.pdf

I’ll bet somebody has the source for that monitor, but I did not try to find such.
 

Offline Benta

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Re: Elektor EC-6809
« Reply #14 on: November 28, 2021, 09:30:15 pm »
Just as a side thought, the 6809 didn't nearly get the popularity it deserved. Possibly because it appeared too late, and the 8-bit market was already saturated.

I'm 100% with you here. The second reason was the almost simultaneous appearance of the M68000, which really made waves.

 

Offline Wawavoun

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Re: Elektor EC-6809
« Reply #15 on: November 30, 2021, 09:22:22 pm »
Hello there !

Thanks you all for your researches and advice's.

EC-6809 has been initially published into dutch Elektor edition...

With the help of a french Flex specialist, Frédéric LDg, I hope to get soon a version of Flex able to boot onto this computer with a heavily modified Assist-09 monitor.

I have to say now that the content of the original eproms is probably definitively lost.
But who say ? May be one day...

Regards.
Philippe
« Last Edit: December 01, 2021, 12:17:04 pm by Wawavoun »
 

Offline Kjelt

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Re: Elektor EC-6809
« Reply #16 on: November 30, 2021, 10:00:29 pm »
Did you contact the dutch elektor, people working there for over 30 years so they might have the files or the original pcb in their collection, but you probably already tried that.
 

Offline ozcar

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Re: Elektor EC-6809
« Reply #17 on: December 01, 2021, 01:26:48 am »
I still run Flex occasionally, but not on any real 6809 system – those are long gone except for a 6809-based eprom programmer which could not run Flex anyway. I run Flex using a 6809 emulator that I wrote myself a very long time ago. There are few of those out there, which are a lot more impressive than mine, which makes no attempt to simulate fangled things like FDC controller chips. Originally I used one of the versions of Flex that I had, and just patched the binary code in a few places to get it to work in the new virtual world.

Later, after the Internet was invented (!), I located the Flex source code and what I use now was assembled from that – it identifies itself as "6809 FLEX V3.01". It’s been a while since I set that up, but I think the code was as is in flex_srces.dsk here: http://www.swtpcemu.com/swtpc/fufu_downloads.htm .

I made a lot of changes to TERMIO.TXT. For the strange way I do things, the FLEX FMS routines don’t actually get used, although I left that code there (long story, my emulator / virtual 6809 does not use .dsk files, at least not directly).

Just to get Flex to boot should not be too difficult if you set it up to do serial “terminal” access. If you already have Assist-09 running, you could just use that to load or even just manually enter the boot code for a test. A bit more work would be required to get the output to the CRT controller though. Keyboard, well, depending on what sort of keyboard you intend to use.
 


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