TriBlade Prop PCB: Uses 3 Propeller ICs for a Single Board Computer (SBC)

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Comments

  • Toby SeckshundToby Seckshund Posts: 2,027
    edited 2009-04-27 - 06:35:33
    Thanks for the confirmatiom that things look good, so far. I modified my "Z80 nailed to a prop" board, which was basically a Demoboard without the video and sound stuff, so I have 90% of a Blade 1 ready and waiting (all the demo conns and components are on risers and a top board, arduino_esque.

    Next the SD, then CPM ....

    I started trying to get a Nascom 1 running, and now I recall trying to get a Nascom 2 to run CPM 2.2 (without the proper steering roms)
  • YodaYoda Posts: 132
    edited 2009-04-27 - 14:41:20
    Hi Ray,

    Thanks for the info. Do you have a good communication routine between blade 1 and 2? I have a pretty decent terminal emulator that Vince Briel did for the PockeTerm. It is a neat little product. It does a very good VT100 emulation. I would just need to remove or modify the FullDuplexSerial that it uses to go out on the max233 to use the interconnect between blade 1 and 2 ? I assume there would be modifications on the blade 2 side as well? I think the packing would be a win of reads for sure and on the writes as well depending on whether you do lazy writes or not.

    If I can help with any the code I will dive in. I will explore getting the terminal emulation going - so I can get off of propTerm and getting wordstar running on a nice 15 inch monitor.


    Dave
  • Cluso99Cluso99 Posts: 16,673
    edited 2009-04-28 - 02:33:44
    Sorry my replies have been sporadic - I have other work to do, then a design to finish (see new thread).

    My Blade #2 and #1 communicate without RS232 drivers, so I expect to get >> 115200 baud running (more like 8Mbits as Beau posted).

    The VT100 emulation would be a great area to focus on Blade #1, although Mike Green is working here.

    No-one has focused on Blade #3. In reality, it's only a normal prop with non-dedicated I/O. However, Blade #2 has reset lines to both Blade #1 & #3, so an area which has not been done is to load a simple program from Blade #2 to Blade #3, thereby saving the eeprom requirement on Blade #3.

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    Links to other interesting threads:

    · Home of the MultiBladeProps: TriBladeProp, SixBladeProp, website (Multiple propeller pcbs)
    · Single Board Computer:·3 Propeller ICs·and a·TriBladeProp board (ZiCog Z80 Emulator)
    · Prop Tools under Development or Completed (Index)
    · Emulators: Micros eg Altair, and Terminals eg VT100 (Index)
    · Search the Propeller forums (via Google)
    My cruising website is: ·www.bluemagic.biz·· MultiBladeProp is: www.bluemagic.biz/cluso.htm
  • YodaYoda Posts: 132
    edited 2009-04-28 - 03:05:08
    I got VT100 code running pretty easily - it is using the full duplex serial driver. Some minimal issues with CR/LF that I have to work out but it was pretty easy to do. I made the mod to LK1 and LK2 so I can cross over lines. It is not 8M bit but 115200 is plenty fast for text now. So I can run the board now without being hooked to PC once code is loaded on blade 1 and 2 eeproms. I assume as I am doing that the jumpers have to be removed to load each blade to eliminate cross talk between them as the code is being downloaded?
  • Cluso99Cluso99 Posts: 16,673
    edited 2009-04-28 - 03:13:03
    Absolutely, you have to remove the jumpers LK1 & LK2 if you connect to either J11 or J21 to load code as the lines will be in bus conflict.

    Yes, 115200 is plenty fast enough for now. I just have some ideas for later and want high speed comms for that.

    A soon as I am on the other laptop I will post the boot code I used to load into Blade #2 eeprom. It boots a modified PropDos/PropCmd which can then be used to load ZiCog or any other binary from the microSD card.

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    Links to other interesting threads:

    · Home of the MultiBladeProps: TriBladeProp, SixBladeProp, website (Multiple propeller pcbs)
    · Single Board Computer:·3 Propeller ICs·and a·TriBladeProp board (ZiCog Z80 Emulator)
    · Prop Tools under Development or Completed (Index)
    · Emulators: Micros eg Altair, and Terminals eg VT100 (Index)
    · Search the Propeller forums (via Google)
    My cruising website is: ·www.bluemagic.biz·· MultiBladeProp is: www.bluemagic.biz/cluso.htm

    Post Edited (Cluso99) : 4/30/2009 5:44:18 AM GMT
  • Cluso99Cluso99 Posts: 16,673
    edited 2009-04-30 - 05:05:57
    We (Heater and I) are trying to keep this thread more for the TriBlade implementation·and other goodies and the ZiCog thread more for the Z80 emulator. Obviously there is a lot of crossover, but that's our·objective.

    There are a number of TriBlades now running out there now,·so I·will be·posting some extra featres that may not have been obvious from the schematics and descriptions of the TriBladeProp.

    Mike Green is doing Flash drivers, OBC is likely to be doing PropDos and/or VT100 ??,·I think someone is doing an editor, and I have been discussing with Ross about getting his Catalina C compiler running on a TriBlade.

    There is nothing on the TriBlade which cannot be wired on a group of demo·boards and I have published the circuit diagrams.cool.gif

    I have another solution due in a couple of weeks for those that want a Blade #2 prebuilt. roll.gif
    see Blade #2 variants - External Ram Prop for your Proto Board··http://forums.parallax.com/showthread.php?p=803330
    I will publish more details as it gets closer.

    Anyone want to get Ethernet (ENC28J60) running on Blade #3 (which is pretty much a prop with I/O pinouts only) or it could work on Blade #1 using the SRAM pins (i.e. no SRAM on Blade #1)?

    If by chance I have missed responding to any questions over the past week or so, please re-ask as I have been busy with other things.

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    Links to other interesting threads:

    · Home of the MultiBladeProps: TriBladeProp, SixBladeProp, website (Multiple propeller pcbs)
    · Single Board Computer:·3 Propeller ICs·and a·TriBladeProp board (ZiCog Z80 Emulator)
    · Prop Tools under Development or Completed (Index)
    · Emulators: Micros eg Altair, and Terminals eg VT100 (Index)
    · Search the Propeller forums (via Google)
    My cruising website is: ·www.bluemagic.biz·· MultiBladeProp is: www.bluemagic.biz/cluso.htm
  • Cluso99Cluso99 Posts: 16,673
    edited 2009-04-30 - 05:40:34
    Here is the PropDos/PropCmd I loaded into Blade #2 Eeprom to boot from the microSD card.

    If you want to run ZiCog on the TriBladeProp from this, copy the attachd binary to the SD and do

    SD>ZICOG072.BIN

    I have placed delays in the code for switching windows to PropTerminal which runs at 115200 baud on the PC.

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    Links to other interesting threads:

    · Home of the MultiBladeProps: TriBladeProp, SixBladeProp, website (Multiple propeller pcbs)
    · Single Board Computer:·3 Propeller ICs·and a·TriBladeProp board (ZiCog Z80 Emulator)
    · Prop Tools under Development or Completed (Index)
    · Emulators: Micros eg Altair, and Terminals eg VT100 (Index)
    · Search the Propeller forums (via Google)
    My cruising website is: ·www.bluemagic.biz·· MultiBladeProp is: www.bluemagic.biz/cluso.htm
  • SRLMSRLM Posts: 5,045
    edited 2009-05-02 - 05:08:02
    I'm almost done assembling the first board, but I have a few more questions:

    First: do you have the physical board layout diagrams somewhere? Specifically, I'm looking for the blade 3 prototyping area, but if you have the rest of the board that would be great.
    Second: I used a PN2222 transistor instead of a P2N222 transistor. Will my board explode into a million pieces, or will that work. I compared datasheets, and they appeared to be pretty much the same.
    Third: I used a electrolytic capacitor of the same value for C2 and C3. Is this okay?
    Fourth: What do the latch chips allow me to do?
  • Cluso99Cluso99 Posts: 16,673
    edited 2009-05-02 - 06:51:24
    SLRM:

    1. There is no actual prototyping area for Blade #3. You can however use the holes for the different connectors for this if you want. The circuit diagram is published which will show you which pins are connected. I have not published the complete board layout.

    2.· I am not aware of the PN2222 transistor but presume it is a shorthand way of describing the P2N2222 transistor. The P2N2222 has a different pinout to the 2N2222 transistor of some years ago. Just ensure that it is the same pinout and an NPN transistor - it is general purpose, nothing special.

    3.· Tantalum capacitors give·better·response than electrolytic, but should be acceptable.

    4.· The latch chips are required for storing the additional addresses on Blade #1. I have suggested on the thread to not fit the SRAM and Latch to Blade #1 at this time since there is no software to actually use it. The Latch is required for Blade #2·for most things such as storing the chip select of the SRAMs, microSD, Flash and EEprom, etc.

    Don't forget to do the modifications according to the errata A1 which I published here before. This is a wire between the SRAMs and Prop on Blade #2 and the orientation of the P2N2222.

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    Links to other interesting threads:

    · Home of the MultiBladeProps: TriBladeProp, SixBladeProp, website (Multiple propeller pcbs)
    · Single Board Computer:·3 Propeller ICs·and a·TriBladeProp board (ZiCog Z80 Emulator)
    · Prop Tools under Development or Completed (Index)
    · Emulators: Micros eg Altair, and Terminals eg VT100 (Index)
    · Search the Propeller forums (via Google)
    My cruising website is: ·www.bluemagic.biz·· MultiBladeProp is: www.bluemagic.biz/cluso.htm
  • SapiehaSapieha Posts: 2,964
    edited 2009-05-02 - 06:54:24
    Hi SLRM.

    Transistor is ok. I used a BC337.

    Capacitors is not so fine. You must have Tantalum in C2, C3

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    Nothing is impossible, there are only different degrees of difficulty.
    For every stupid question there is at least one intelligent answer.
    Don't guess - ask instead.
    If you don't ask you won't know.
    If your gonna construct something, make it·as simple as·possible yet as versatile as posible.


    Sapieha
  • Oldbitcollector (Jeff)Oldbitcollector (Jeff) Posts: 8,090
    edited 2009-05-03 - 23:29:47
    Finally got mine built! After I fudged the tantalum caps.
    (had my eyes fixed for distance after I got cataracts removed!)

    Chickened out on the USB interface and went tri-propplug.
    I bought all the stuff to completely populate the board, but so far I've only
    installed three propellers, 1 RAM chip on blade 2 (as well as the micro SD)

    I suspect I'm up enough to run the CPM stuff now, but to be honest I'm
    actually thinking of branching off a little to doing 40 column retrocomputing
    style software with video/keyboard on #1, brain on #2, and sound on #3.

    After I figure out how to get that CPM stuff up and running. [noparse]:)[/noparse]

    OBC

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    New to the Propeller?

    Visit the: The Propeller Pages @ Warranty Void.
  • SRLMSRLM Posts: 5,045
    edited 2009-05-08 - 06:32:27
    I'm almost done, but I've hit a stickler. Somehow, I don't think I ordered any of the 5V regulators. I went to get one of mine, and found out that your pinout for the regulators is Ground-Out-In? All of mine and the two stores that I looked at were In-Ground-Out...

    I tried the USB interface with a hotair rework station, but I accidentally started with the chip twisted a bit. It took a while to center it, and I think I may have fried it... Well, at least the prop-plugs are on sale today.
  • Cluso99Cluso99 Posts: 16,673
    edited 2009-05-08 - 08:44:52
    Sorry about the regulators I used. Such are standards [noparse]:([/noparse] You can use the LM1117 or LM1086. I do hope you have not fried your FT232.

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    Links to other interesting threads:

    · Home of the MultiBladeProps: TriBladeProp, SixBladeProp, website (Multiple propeller pcbs)
    · Single Board Computer:·3 Propeller ICs·and a·TriBladeProp board (ZiCog Z80 Emulator)
    · Prop Tools under Development or Completed (Index)
    · Emulators: Micros eg Altair, and Terminals eg VT100 (Index)
    · Search the Propeller forums (via Google)
    My cruising website is: ·www.bluemagic.biz·· MultiBladeProp is: www.bluemagic.biz/cluso.htm
  • SRLMSRLM Posts: 5,045
    edited 2009-05-19 - 05:20:28
    I got the whole regulator thing backwards. I thought it was wrong, when it was as really thought the whole time. So I soldered in the last part, pulled out the prop plug, and gave it a shot. It worked!

    A couple more questions:
    1) Somehow I ordered the 74HC595N latches (as marked on the chip), instead of the 74HC573 the board mentions. It appears that it's the family (74HC) that matters, not the specific chip? Is it safe to use the chips that I have?
    EDIT: some more sluething tells me that I cannot use it as a drop in replacement. The datasheets are handy enough to each have two diagrams which share the same labels. Although I don't understand them, they're clearly not the same. Oh well...
    2) For what setup do I need to use the latches? I assume that they go with the SRAM.
    3) Are the mounting holes electrically connected? The hole next to the PS2 connectors is very close to one of the PS2 holes (which I assume is ground...), and my standoff almost touches the solder.

    Post Edited (SRLM) : 5/19/2009 5:56:58 AM GMT
  • Toby SeckshundToby Seckshund Posts: 2,027
    edited 2009-05-19 - 06:41:49
    According to the datasheet I have just looked up the 74HC595N is a "8-bit serial-in/serial or parallel-out shift register with output latches; 3-state". The wanted chip is a transparent latch, simular to the '373 but with reordered pinouts. Not the same beasty at all.
  • Cluso99Cluso99 Posts: 16,673
    edited 2009-05-19 - 09:14:20
    Yes you must use the 74HC573. Where did you see the 595 mentioned?

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    Links to other interesting threads:

    · Home of the MultiBladeProps: TriBladeProp, SixBladeProp, website (Multiple propeller pcbs)
    · Single Board Computer:·3 Propeller ICs·and a·TriBladeProp board (ZiCog Z80 Emulator)
    · Prop Tools under Development or Completed (Index)
    · Emulators: Micros eg Altair, and Terminals eg VT100 (Index)
    · Search the Propeller forums (via Google)
    My cruising website is: ·www.bluemagic.biz·· MultiBladeProp is: www.bluemagic.biz/cluso.htm
  • SRLMSRLM Posts: 5,045
    edited 2009-05-19 - 15:07:24
    Cluso99 said...
    Yes you must use the 74HC573. Where did you see the 595 mentioned?

    I think it was a mistake on the part of future electronics. I looked at my invoice, and it was correct there. I looked at my chips, and they were off by 22. I'll have to look around, though, and make sure that I don't have the chips laying around somewhere else.
  • kwinnkwinn Posts: 8,617
    edited 2009-05-19 - 15:41:00
    Those are definitely not the same chip. You need the '573. The "HC" refers to the logic family. It is basically the cmos equivalent of the 74LS chips. Good choice for use with the prop since they work with 2 to 6V supplies. The '595 is a good choice for I/O. Four lines from the prop can give you just about as many outputs as you want as long as you don't need high speeds.
  • SRLMSRLM Posts: 5,045
    edited 2009-05-19 - 18:20:00
    I have plied the wall of electronics chips at my university's electronics shop, and they don't have any 74HC573 chips. However, they do have some DM74LS573 chips. From the datasheet comparison test, the logic symbols are identical (well, a pin is moved but I think that is cosmetic), and the pinouts are identical. Will these work?

    DM74LS573 Datasheet

    Edit: Grrr. The minimum supply voltage is 5 volts for the DM74LS573 chips...

    Post Edited (SRLM) : 5/19/2009 6:26:32 PM GMT
  • AleAle Posts: 2,360
    edited 2009-05-19 - 18:48:33
    Well.... they are LS and not HCT: Inputs are equal, but the LS has bipolar transistors at the output with pretty poor sink/source capabilities and the NEED of a 5 V power rail and the HCT has CMOS outputs with rail-to-rail output and good sink/source capabilities... they also need 5V smile.gif. It should work, it is only as address latch.

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    Visit the home of pPropQL, pPropQL020 and OMU for the pPropQL/020 at omnibus.uni-freiburg.de/~rp92
  • Mike HuseltonMike Huselton Posts: 746
    edited 2009-05-19 - 22:15:21
    Spark fun carries these logic level translators (two 3.3v Bidirectional I/O lines and two 5v Bidirectional I/O lines):

    www.sparkfun.com/commerce/product_info.php?products_id=8745.

    I bought 10 of these boards and I use them all the time for legacy chip conversion.
    They measure 0.5 by 0.6 inches. Works for me - I haven't had a conversion problem in 4 years.
    And I haven't had any high-speed issues, either.

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    JMH
  • Cluso99Cluso99 Posts: 16,673
    edited 2009-05-20 - 04:23:10
    As I said previously, you MUST use the 74HC573. Otherwise you may have to change timings, etc, to get it to work. The only substitute could be the 74AHC573 (296-4613-5-ND from DigiKey) or the 54HC573 and 54AHC573·which are commercial temperature range chips.

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    Links to other interesting threads:

    · Home of the MultiBladeProps: TriBladeProp, SixBladeProp, website (Multiple propeller pcbs)
    · Single Board Computer:·3 Propeller ICs·and a·TriBladeProp board (ZiCog Z80 Emulator)
    · Prop Tools under Development or Completed (Index)
    · Emulators: Micros eg Altair, and Terminals eg VT100 (Index)
    · Search the Propeller forums (via Google)
    My cruising website is: ·www.bluemagic.biz·· MultiBladeProp is: www.bluemagic.biz/cluso.htm
  • Dr_AculaDr_Acula Posts: 5,484
    edited 2009-05-20 - 05:55:23
    Re "I looked at my chips, and they were off by 22. "

    Yikes, by the same logic, that would turn a 74HC10 into a 74HC32!

    I'm jealous. You have a wall of electronics chips at the university? Sweet. Where is your university...

    I've slowly built up a wall of chips over many years. It is very handy. And many of these chips are only 30c each, so if you are putting in an order for some parts, almost worth buying some extra ones and getting some more parts drawers. If you like tinkering with logic chips, that is.

    HC parts are great as they go down to 2V, so you can use them in 3V circuits or 5V circuits or other voltages between 2 and 6V. LS is stuck with just 5V. ditto HCT. Substitutions are as Cluso says. I tend to buy HC when buying logic chips.

    JMH - level translators would possibly not be the best answer for this problem, but that link is to a part that is absolutely perfect for other projects. Particularly anything SD card related when using 5V chips. Thanks++ for the link - bookmarking it now.

    Cluso, how are things going with the bi-blade?

    Post Edited (Dr_Acula (James Moxham)) : 5/20/2009 6:02:18 AM GMT
  • SRLMSRLM Posts: 5,045
    edited 2009-05-20 - 06:21:19
    Hooray! I got the onboard prop plug working! My first SMD. I was worried since I had the board over the hot air station for about half an hour, trying to get it right. I thought I may have fried the chip...
    Dr Acula said...
    I'm jealous. You have a wall of electronics chips at the university? Sweet. Where is your university...

    I've slowly built up a wall of chips over many years. It is very handy. And many of these chips are only 30c each, so if you are putting in an order for some parts, almost worth buying some extra ones and getting some more parts drawers. If you like tinkering with logic chips, that is.

    University of California Riverside. The "wall of chips" is part of the EE lab support office. About half the room is dedicated to storing old "junk" (hidden treasures) like big motors and chips and robotic arms and ... It's one of my favorite places since I came here this year. Plus, I can use their nice soldering irons and other neato tools... [noparse]:)[/noparse]

    I too have been working up a wall. For most of the Tri-blade passives I ordered an extra hundred or so. Some of the chips were a little bit more expensive(like the FTDI chips), so those will have to wait for a spot on the wall...
  • AleAle Posts: 2,360
    edited 2009-05-20 - 11:47:41
    SRLM: SMD devices can be soldered easier with a normal iron, small tip:

    Solder one leg from one side and another from the other side, the ones at the ends work best. Later you just put solder and the iron over the legs kind of fast move it so the get soldered to the board do not caring about shorts. Then with solder wick you remove the extra (and shorting) solder. It is fast and looks quite ok. The extra resin from the solder can then be removed with ethanol, the unflavoured version, of course smile.gif

    ▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔▔
    Visit the home of pPropQL, pPropQL020 and OMU for the pPropQL/020 at omnibus.uni-freiburg.de/~rp92
  • Cluso99Cluso99 Posts: 16,673
    edited 2009-05-20 - 12:53:34
    Dr_A: The biblade (TwinBlade and the RamBlade) have been pushed aside for something that came up unexpectedly. Unfortunately, I expect another week before I get back to it - just didn't complete it in time. :-(

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    Links to other interesting threads:

    · Home of the MultiBladeProps: TriBladeProp, SixBladeProp, website (Multiple propeller pcbs)
    · Single Board Computer:·3 Propeller ICs·and a·TriBladeProp board (ZiCog Z80 Emulator)
    · Prop Tools under Development or Completed (Index)
    · Emulators: Micros eg Altair, and Terminals eg VT100 (Index)
    · Search the Propeller forums (via Google)
    My cruising website is: ·www.bluemagic.biz·· MultiBladeProp is: www.bluemagic.biz/cluso.htm
  • TrapperBobTrapperBob Posts: 139
    edited 2009-05-20 - 13:49:31
    Hi Cluso99,

    I am also very interested in the BiBlade and RamBlade. I am still experimenting with Blade#3 on the TriBlade. Looking forward to the continuing development of the TriBlade also.
  • Mike HuseltonMike Huselton Posts: 746
    edited 2009-05-20 - 17:07:02
    I like RamBlade rather than my MonoBlade suggestion. It goes directly to the point, i.e. RAM handling.

    I'm breadboarding Hippy's code to process SPI and Hanno's thread on memory utilization.
    That's quite enough to keep me busy until you get back to the board layout, Cluso99.

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    JMH
  • SRLMSRLM Posts: 5,045
    edited 2009-05-30 - 06:16:45
    Almost all setup. I've been doing sockets on everything, and so it's been a challenge to get the wirewrap soldered to the socket without having the solder flow into the hole. I've had to remove one 40 pin socket since that happened, and I'm terrible at desoldering. I've lifted several pads already, but I think it's recoverable. Anyway, I wrote up a pinout list for the Triblade. Can you confirm that it's correct? I built it from the schematics, which I assume are correct based on all errata discovered.

    And I think I get the latches now. They're just there to store eight bits of the address for the SRAM, so that you don't have to waste too many extra pins on a Prop.
    Ale said...
    The extra resin from the solder can then be removed with ethanol, the unflavoured version, of course

    I tried some Isopropyl Alcohol tonight (99.953%, the kind recommended in a recent thread) and it appeared to strip some of the mask off. I can see a bit of copper for the traces now. Also, it appears to spread the flux around, rather than remove it (despite vigorous rubbing with a toothbrush), and when it dries it just leaves a sticky residue behind. Paper towels can't clean it up since they just get caught in all the snipped leads.

    Post Edited (SRLM) : 5/30/2009 6:23:44 AM GMT
  • Cluso99Cluso99 Posts: 16,673
    edited 2009-05-30 - 08:26:40
    SRLM: I presume when you talk about the wirewrap, you mean the wire mod on Blade #2. If so, just bend the pin on each SRAM out so it does not go into the socket and solder the pin directly.

    I used·Freon to clean up pcbs years ago. Not sure if it is still available. You have to drip it off the board though.

    I have updated your pinout to fix a few errors.

    Note that no-one has yet used the SRAM on the TriBlade Blade #1. It uses a latched address bus for the high order bits. The latch on Blade #2 is different in that it selects one of.. the·SRAM chips or SD or Flash. It can also reset Prop #1 and/or Prop #3. It only requires latching when the selects change, so SRAM can be accessed fast without latching.

    Hope this answers your questions, Ray

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    Links to other interesting threads:

    · Home of the MultiBladeProps: TriBladeProp, SixBladeProp, website (Multiple propeller pcbs)
    · Single Board Computer:·3 Propeller ICs·and a·TriBladeProp board (ZiCog Z80 Emulator)
    · Prop Tools under Development or Completed (Index)
    · Emulators: Micros eg Altair, and Terminals eg VT100 (Index)
    · Search the Propeller forums (via Google)
    My cruising website is: ·www.bluemagic.biz·· MultiBladeProp is: www.bluemagic.biz/cluso.htm
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