PDA

View Full Version : NEW: SDRAM Module for Propeller Platform



Nick McClick
11-11-2010, 06:15 PM
Jazzed has designed an awesome 32MB SDRAM expansion module for the Propeller Platform, I have a few available now & more are coming soon;
http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4003/5167374130_2581a43007_o.jpg

Three versions are available;

SDRAM: includes 32MB of SDRAM & a microSD card slot
SDRAM+TV: Includes 32MB of SDRAM, microSD card slot, 2xPS/2 Connectors, a pre-programmed ATTiny for PS/2 - I2C translation, and composite video out
SDRAM+VGA: Includes 32MB of SDRAM & VGA video out. Does not include a microSD card slot


There's a little more info on the project page (http://www.gadgetgangster.com/359), & a lot more info on the SDRAM expansion forum thread (http://forums.parallax.com/showthread.php?t=124418).
Let me know if you have any questions!

Sapieha
11-11-2010, 06:17 PM
Hi.

Nice work



Jazzed has designed an awesome 32MB SDRAM expansion module for the Propeller Platform, I have a few available now & more are coming soon;
http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4003/5167374130_2581a43007_o.jpg

Three versions are available;

SDRAM: includes 32MB of SDRAM & a microSD card slot
SDRAM+TV: Includes 32MB of SDRAM, microSD card slot, 2xPS/2 Connectors, a pre-programmed ATTiny for PS/2 - I2C translation, and composite video out
SDRAM+VGA: Includes 32MB of SDRAM & VGA video out. Does not include a microSD card slot


There's a little more info on the project page (http://www.gadgetgangster.com/359), & a lot more info on the SDRAM expansion forum thread (http://forums.parallax.com/showthread.php?t=124418).
Let me know if you have any questions!

David Betz
11-11-2010, 06:20 PM
This module looks very interesting! Your project page makes reference to "through hole parts" that you need to solder yourself but there isn't a list of those parts that I could find. It looks like the board will take a couple of PS2 connectors for keyboard and mouse. What other features does it have once it is populated with the through hole parts?

Nick McClick
11-11-2010, 06:26 PM
@David;

The SDRAM only board doesn't include any through hole parts (everything is surface mount).

The SDRAM+VGA board just needs the VGA connector added on

The SDRAM+TV board needs the ATTiny 8-pin dip socket, PS/2 connectors, and the RCA jack.

Parts are included.

@Sapieha - Thanks! This is jazzed's creation, I can't take any credit, but he's made an awesome board.

David Betz
11-11-2010, 06:32 PM
Thanks. Looking at the project page again I see that the PS2 connectors and ATtiny are mentioned there after all. Anyway, it looks like a very nice addition to the Propeller Platform modules! I guess there are too many pins required for the SDRAM interface to hope for a C3 version of this, right?

Bill Henning
11-11-2010, 06:40 PM
Nice module!


Jazzed has designed an awesome 32MB SDRAM expansion module for the Propeller Platform, I have a few available now & more are coming soon;
http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4003/5167374130_2581a43007_o.jpg

Three versions are available;

SDRAM: includes 32MB of SDRAM & a microSD card slot
SDRAM+TV: Includes 32MB of SDRAM, microSD card slot, 2xPS/2 Connectors, a pre-programmed ATTiny for PS/2 - I2C translation, and composite video out
SDRAM+VGA: Includes 32MB of SDRAM & VGA video out. Does not include a microSD card slot


There's a little more info on the project page (http://www.gadgetgangster.com/359), & a lot more info on the SDRAM expansion forum thread (http://forums.parallax.com/showthread.php?t=124418).
Let me know if you have any questions!

jazzed
11-11-2010, 06:50 PM
Thanks everyone. I hope this and other offerings help make Propeller worth more to more people.

@Nick, thanks for all your patience with me :) Warning! This is just the beginning.

@David, I've attached a parts-list with notes on the options on the project page. Now if I can only figure out how to make the normal parts-list link correctly to it :)

Today VGA+SDCARD is not supported, but VGA can be used without SDCARD of course. VGA does need a connector and few more parts.

For people wanting to use VGA and SDCARD, another solution will come but it will be more expensive since it will rely on a second Propeller - this means the buffer and VGA signal generation will be completely off-loaded from the main CPU.

It is unlikely that C3 will ever be able to use this SDRAM module - efficiently.

A fully integrated Propeller+SDRAM solution is planned, but it will never be as flexible as the Propeller Platform solution.

Cheers.
--Steve

David Betz
11-11-2010, 07:03 PM
It is unlikely that C3 will ever be able to use this SDRAM module - efficiently.
Sounds like a good reason to add another Propeller board to my collection! :-)

Cluso99
11-11-2010, 11:09 PM
Congratulations Steve & Nick.

The board(s) look great and another fine addition to the propeller platform.

Rsadeika
11-21-2010, 11:05 AM
Just curious, anybody know what happened to this product? I was just looking at the GG site, and the SDRAM Module was not listed.

Ray

Forrest
11-21-2010, 12:48 PM
I believe GG is sold out of all three versions. You can still get to this product page by clicking the 'project page' link at the bottom of the first post in this thread.

jazzed
11-21-2010, 04:24 PM
More product is on the way.

You can get email when more product is available if you sign up for "Tell Me!" on the product page. http://www.gadgetgangster.com/359

Thanks.

william chan
11-22-2010, 12:08 AM
Since the Propeller Platform USB already has a microSD card reader, why put another micro-SD card reader on the SDRAM board?

jazzed
11-22-2010, 01:48 AM
Since the Propeller Platform USB already has a microSD card reader, why put another micro-SD card reader on the SDRAM board?
The micro-SD on the Propeller Platform USB module is not used with the SDRAM module. The original P0-P3 connection arrangement is not good for peak SDRAM data bus performance. The micro-SD card on the SDRAM module is provided with better pin connections so that customers don't need to make cuts and jumps on their Propeller Platform SD or USB base board.

Ding-Batty
01-05-2011, 05:06 AM
I was hoping/waiting for more of the "SDRAM + TV" version of the module to be available, but that has been listed as "Sold Out" for quite some time now.

I know that jazzed had been working on the TinyTwoWire module, which overlaps some of the functionality -- the keyboard/mouse logic using an ATTiny (84 vs. 85).

Did I miss something about future availability, or a new design, or something else?

jazzed
01-05-2011, 07:13 AM
I was hoping/waiting for more of the "SDRAM + TV" version of the module to be available, but that has been listed as "Sold Out" for quite some time now.

I know that jazzed had been working on the TinyTwoWire module, which overlaps some of the functionality -- the keyboard/mouse logic using an ATTiny (84 vs. 85).

Did I miss something about future availability, or a new design, or something else?

@Ding-Batty,

The SDRAM only version that is left can have TV with an RCA connector and a few SMD resistors (270, 560, 1.1K). The all-in-one boards are still available if demand justifies more production. Anyone interested in the all-in-one boards should leave a note here or email Nick.

Regarding new design(s): a new module that has SDRAM+TV/AV standard with 2 RCA connectors (minus Keyboard/Mouse) will be shipping soon. I'll leave the details of that up to Nick.

There are other product-line additions coming later. One of the most interesting is the single-board PropellerPC designed for a small enclosure. I'll post more on the PropellerPC in a blog/thread later.

Ding-Batty
01-23-2011, 05:12 AM
I received the board this week, and finally got to work with it today.

The first thing I did was to remove the headers already mounted, and put on new ones like the long-tail female headers used for some Arduino shields (in fact, those are exactly what I used: 4 8-pin headers plus one more split into two 4-pin pieces), and put then in my "preferred" holes on the board.

My first bit of good luck was that the board worked after that modification. :smile:

Next, I got the SdramTest.spin code working so that I could make sure the board worked. This was a little harder than I expected: Between starting with an older version of the test and cache code, and trying to find a copy of FullDuplexSingleton, I thrashed around a bit. I finally found a copy of the right version of FullDuplexSingleton in an earlier copy of the SdramTest zip files in the project thread, but the file is not currently in the SdramTest.zip file on the Gadget Gangster website.

Good news for me: with the right serial driver, and the right version of the cache code and test code, the SDRAM access on the board passed with flying colors.

Next problem: test the microSD card. So I got a copy of Kye's newest SD3.01 Fat16/32 driver code. Now, I know the SDRAM pins are not the usual ones, so I went to find out exactly how the Propeller pins map to the SD card socket. Hmmm.... not really documented anywhere obvious, that I could find -- not in the most recent schematic (which Steve said was not up-to-date). I went hunting for test code, and finally found the pin definitions in some of the code in the ZOG thread.

More good news: SD card access seems to work fine as well. So I didn't kill the card (at least not those portions), and I can move on to the next round of experiments.

Just to memorialize the pin assignments on the board, in case anyone else is looking:


Propeller pin SD card signal
------------- --------------
P16 MISO/DO
P17 CLK
P18 MOSI/DI
P19 CSTo be thorough, since the TV resistors and TV-audio capacitors are present on the board, these seem the signals used for the TV video and audio (I have not tested these, and I hope if I am wrong I will be corrected):

TV video pins: P20..P22
Audio pin: P23

Thanks guys -- now I can have some real fun!

jazzed
01-23-2011, 05:48 AM
Oh my! I'm so sorry I forgot to post this info. Thanks for your diligence in finding the pins. I will update the page and the SdramTest.zip in the morning.

We have been running ZOG on the C3 and the SDRAM board. A release will be available soon.

The demos are a little thin right now, but with a release you'll find a TvText driver, a version of Bagger's Half-Height TV driver (Tv2Text) that allows more lines per screen. I'm working on Keyboard/Mouse drivers as well. Do you have the AVR KEYBD/MOUSE chip and connectors?

David Betz will post a release candidate of ZOG at some point in the near future.

Thanks.
--Steve

jazzed
01-23-2011, 02:32 PM
The listing for the all-in-one SDRAM module has been updated. It now includes:

Module pictures
A list of Propeller pins usage
Parts list
Parts placement drawing
The original A1 schematic as .pdf
An updated SdramTest* package

*SdramTest software requires BST or Homespun compiler, but can be used with Propeller Tool with #ifdef code selection removed. I will not be held hostage by missing tool features!

Rsadeika
01-23-2011, 02:52 PM
I was just at the GG site, and I did not see the SDRAM Module listed anywhere. Has this item been discontinued?

Ray

jazzed
01-23-2011, 03:28 PM
I was just at the GG site, and I did not see the SDRAM Module listed anywhere. Has this item been discontinued?

Ray
Ray, Nick has the site set up so that items out of stock are not listed.

This particular design is being superceeded by 2 new boards:
1. TinyTwoWire for KB/Mouse currently available
2. A new SDRAM/TV board which Nick is now building.

Separating the functions of the all-in-one module into two boards makes sense
for users who do not want the Keybd/Mouse ports.

The original design can still be had if you want it - I will build it myself
to your specification today if you like. I have enough parts for 4 boards.

Ding-Batty
01-23-2011, 05:36 PM
Steve -- thanks for the updated information. It really helps.

Toby Seckshund
01-23-2011, 06:29 PM
Was the only cct diagram offered, the blurry one early on? I assume that this is a commecial venture and there is no open software etc.

I thought about a using a SDRAM for the DracBlade but feeble mindedness ( and idleness) got me nowhere, again

jazzed
01-23-2011, 06:51 PM
Was the only cct diagram offered, the blurry one early on? I assume that this is a commecial venture and there is no open software etc.

Ummm. Software is fully open source and there is a .pdf schematic of the board on the site.

Toby Seckshund
01-23-2011, 07:54 PM
Ahh, sorry I'll look harder.

I just assumed ...