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Posts posted by Strider

  1. On 12/31/2021 at 8:20 PM, TomXP411 said:

    The problem I have with the Pi is that the modern web slightly overwhelms that machine. Something similar to the Pi, but with about 2x the CPU power would probably be ideal for a simple desktop system.

    The biggest problem I run into is it sometimes struggles with 1080 video streaming (YouTube), but it's hit and miss, sometimes it plays fine, sometimes it hiccups. To be honest, a vast majority of the web usage I do while on the Pi 4 runs great, but that's mainly forums, tutorial or technical doc viewing, or searching for information I need for whatever I am doing in that moment. So I really have not had the chance to really push it all that hard in that respect. I will have to do that one of these days.

    To be fair, like I said, I run everything from that M.2 SSD and have it hooked up via cat6, I don't use the wireless on it.

    Overall I am quite happy with the Pi 4's performance for what I am asking it do to. It's definitely not a desktop replacement, but as an alternative, it's not bad. I could honestly see me using it as a daily driver if I had no other choice. However I definitely see room for improvement for the next gen Pi. Just like you I would love to see a faster processor, and if nothing else, M.2 or SATA. The SSD over USB if lightyears ahead of using an SD card or flash drive, but a lot of the Pi's performance issues come from the highly limited storage speeds.

  2. 2022.jpg.7a792383c80d90bba9e06a31b6bafea1.jpg


    Goodbye 2021. Hello 2022.

    To say the last couple years have been a roller coaster would be an understatement, with it's fair share of hardships. Still, I have a lot to be thankful for as we complete yet another trip around the sun. I have my great family, a good job, and a fun hobby.

    In 2021 I dove into learning new things, such as Arduino, to give me a stepping stone into programming, something I left behind a couple decades ago. Learning how to properly use and exploit the power of the Raspberry Pi. Resurrecting my old electronics hobby, designing and building my own devices and circuits. Just to name a few.

    In 2022, I'm going to try and take a few more camping trips with my family, those are something I greatly enjoy doing. Maybe a trip back to my home state to visit family there as well.

    I also want to take more time to enjoy my hobbies, electronics and retro-computing. I would love the see an X16 kit sitting on my desk sometime in 2022 as well, just waiting to be soldered together and built! Time will tell. 😜

    Any excuse to have a soldering iron in my hand. lol


    Lastly, I want to wish all of you a safe and wonderful holiday and hope for great new year!


    Are you looking forward to anything in 2022? 😁

    • Like 3
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  3. I agree with @Edmond D when it comes to "modern" tutorials.

    In my recent quest to learn how to program Arduino, I found a lot of trash tutorials that glossed over many fundamentals and went right to the "just do this" and did not explain WHY.

    Luckily I ran across this guy: Paul McWhorter @ https://www.youtube.com/user/mcwhorpj

    While I already know a vast majority of the electronics hardware he goes into (been doing that since the 80's), he does a great job explaining WHY he's doing what he's doing and what the programming is doing. I still found myself watching the parts I already knew, and not skipping to what I didn't (the coding itself), because he does such a  good job explaining it.

    He's an excellent instructor, a diamond in the sand.  😜


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  4. Like @JimmyDansbo, for me, it already exists, and it's the Raspberry Pi. The Pi4 is a more than capable alternative for me. I use an 8GB model, running off SSD over USB3, and it's impressively fast. I use it for most of my Arduino and circuit design, and do a bit of gaming on it. I use the 3B+ for classic console emulation, and between the two that's good enough for my alternative.

    That being said, I am VERY tempted to grab a Atomic Pi, an x86 single board, so you have more OS, software options, and more horsepower to play with. It's powered by an Intel Atom x5-Z8350 quad core @ 1.44GHz with a 480MHz IGPU. It's limited to 2GB DDR3L-1600 RAM, but for my needs, that's more than enough. I want to use it for more demanding emulation, or see if I can get it running something like Win 95 OSR2.5, just for kicks. The big drawback is drivers for older operating systems, but I may still give it a go and see what I can get to run on it.


  5. On 12/27/2021 at 12:27 AM, Edmond D said:

    The 8Bit guy replied in Dave's GYouTube comment thread - that Dave G did a great & complete job, and that he (8BG) could probably borrow to two units for a video. 

    I seen that. You can see how excited Dave gets when talking about Commodore, and how much of a fan he is of our 8-Bit-David. 😁

    • Like 1
  6. My first experience was on my dads Magnavox Odyssey, but I am pretty sure he had a Coleco Telstar as well, and a couple others. I remember the Odyssey, but I was very young. I remember taping plastic sheets to the TV for different games, but I don't recall exactly what console that was. My dad repaired Pinball machines as a hobby back then, so mom got him those consoles to have fun with at home. They were not all new, they showed up a lot cheaper in thrift stores and yard sales really quickly, or so I was told later. lol

    Good times. Of course, my first console was the Atari 2600 like many of us kids born in the early 70's. 😁

  7. Doom Eternal has some cool Easter Eggs in it. One such hidden gem of pure retro awesomeness, you can find 14 disks hidden around, and install the original Ultimate Doom on an old PC in your room on your "Fortress of Doom" ship.

    You can play the entire Ultimate Doom game, from within Doom Eternal, on an old PC, on your spaceship. I love it!

    Time to track them all down! Already found some vinyl! 😆

    Love it when games pay tribute to their past.







    FYI: The disks you track down also unlock original cheat codes for use in Doom Eternal. You can also unlock and play Doom II on that same retro PC in Doom Eternal by simply entering this code "FLYNNTAGGART". Unlocking Ultimate Doom is not required to unlock Doom II. Flynn Taggart is Doom Guy's name in the original Doom novels.

    • Like 1
  8. Story time!

    So, I'm running an XFX RX 580 DD 8GB card in my system. It does what I need it to do, even though the 580 line has been out since 2017 and was technically a "refresh" of the 480 line . Had it about 2 years now. Was under $200 when I got it, before the silicon hit the fan and sky-rocked in price.

    About a year ago a fan started making noise, and XFX kindly sent me a set of new fans and a shroud. So I tore the card apart and replaced it, and in the process I had to replace the thermal compound as well. Put it all back together. Worked great.

    Fast forward to this past week, and I start putting it under heavy load for the first time in months. Temps are pushing 85C, got the fans cranked to 2300+ RPM, so it got loud and hot. Started under-volting it to drop the temps, got them down about 5 or 6 C to just under 80, but still too hot and loud. It was running at 65C to 70C max, under full sustained load.

    So... tore it apart again. Thermal compound was hard...it dried out, I used my tried and true Arctic Silver 5. Dug out the tube, checked it out, it's barely still pliable, and I picked it up new a year ago when I replaced the fans. Guess I got a bad tube, or one that sat in a warehouse forever. So, I just got 2 tubes of Arctic MX4 recently, and I like it better anyway. Put that on there and...

    65C under max sustained load at 1600'ish RPM. Cool and quiet! Even more so than it was originally!

    On a side note, I did discover my card can  under-volt to 1050mV and remain 100% stable, at stock it runs at 1140mV under stage 7 (max) load. May see if I can get it under 1000mV, I know some cards can, seen some people saying they got them running at about 960mV.

    Lower temps, lower RPM on  the fans, a win win out of an annoying situation!

    Amazes me how much heat modern hardware produces sometimes, but the level of control they give you over it is so nice. 😁

    This is my card, love the look of it as well as the performance for the MSRP. NOT the current prices of hardware. These cards are going for $600 new right now. NOT worth it! lol


    • Like 1
  9. HOW did I miss this?!?!?

    Seriously, I have been doing a lot with Arduino lately, but I kinda want to mess around with MMBasic and this gives me an excuse to mess with the Pico. At $4 a pop they are a pretty attractive micro-controller.

    I really liked the Color Maximite 2 and wanted to get one when I first seen David review it, but was never able to do so, they were always sold out. I gave up on it, but MMBasic looks like fun to me.

    I have a special place in my heart for BASIC, I gave up on programming a very long time ago, and only recently started fumbling though it to learn a bit later in life. At least this will be somewhat familiar, and I don't care about the speed on a micro-controller. So why not give it a try?  

    Well...guess it's time to guy a few Picos... And down another rabbit hole I go. 🙃

  10. I just have to say, I am pleased with both GeeekPi and RetroFlag for their customer support.

    GeeekPi is the company I bought my RetroFlag GPi Case kit from, and after trying to figure out the issue I am having with the case not detecting the built in controller, they gave me a full refund.

    In doing research and troubleshooting on possible issues with the case, I stumbled across the possibility there is an issue with the ribbon cable header. RetroFlag is sending me a special ribbon cable that actually solders to pads on the board, bypassing the header, to see if that solves the problem. How cool is that? I discovered it via an obscure YouTube video of someone fixing a similar issues with a broken header.

    I love it when a company stands behind the products they sell. It's a rarity these days, and I'm glad to see it in the retro community. 🙂

    gpi-ribon-cable2-s.jpg.0062ac2d3c7625391e6874ee9b0d3837.jpg gpi-solder-cable.jpg.945bb4eeac734c093bd5fe3404aed447.jpg

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  11. I totally agree with the whole "Consumermas" feeling sometimes.

    I guess for me I like to think it's not so much about the items given as the time spent opening them, seeing peoples reactions, and talking about it as the day goes on. Christmas in my home was that special occasion when family got together, had a big meal, and had an excuse to spend way too much money on things we would not normally buy. Where as my wife and her family had the same gatherings, but they often gave gifts of necessities, ordinary items you buy all the time. My brother-in-law in particular would go out of his way to make gifts as hard to get into as possible, or make finding your gift an adventure style scavenger hunt with clues, puzzles, and all. Everybody does it a little different, and it's all special, it's all about spending time with family and having a little fun.

    Now that we're all "older", the magic of Christmas has indeed lost a lot of it's appeal. Still, the child inside me cannot live with the idea of not getting my wife gifts, even if I do suck at it, hence the lists. Even when she tells me she don't want anything. Honestly, through the year, we don't buy much we want, only what we need. I'm not sure why, but we just don't. So Christmas is that excuse we use to do it. I use it as an excuse to stock up on parts, tools, etc. for my hobbies. lol

    • Like 2
  12. I was sitting here the other night, dozing off in my chair, getting ready to go to bed. Noticed a new video posted "We asked A.I. to dream of Christmas nostalgia." So, I had to check it out.

    About a dozen replays later, I finally made myself go to bed, where I had my own dreams of nostalgia.

    I agree with @TomXP411, @Perifractic's music is most excellent! it's just fun to listen to.  😁



    The "spiders" in the instrumental version were awesome. It was fun seeing what images and patterns my brain would try and recognize, like BB-8, R2-D2, Darth Vader, Atari logos, HAL, wired computer mice, D&D dice, and things that reminded me of TV and movies like Blade Runner, Six Million Dollar Man, and Knight Rider. Needless to say, both videos are fun to watch and listen to.

    • Like 1
  13. Late to the party. 😄

    The short of it is, I would echo what others have said and use something like MiSTer if I wanted to avoid a Pi or emulation in general. Going FPGA would be your only  feasible modern option, for the reasons listed by others. Original hardware is hard to find and expensive, and most arcade machines were all different. Using an FPGA solution solves both problems and gets you as close to original metal as possible, with no software emulation.

    • Like 1
  14. We started the lists for two main reasons. One, I suck at getting things for my wife, her hobbies are pretty far outside my sphere of knowledge, as mine are for her. We simply like different things. Two, I tend to come across things I want or need as I am working on a project, or coming up with yet another one I want to do. So I add what I need to a list as a reminder for myself. Right now, I have several projects I have either started and have not had time to finish, are missing parts needed to finish, or want to work on once my time frees up (hopefully sooner than later). I decided, why not just let my wife pick up a bulk of it for me for Christmas. haha

    Good luck on the Amiibo! Many many trips around the sun ago, 80's and 90's, I used to collect video game related ... anything. I had quite the collection of miniature Nintendo statues and figures (several dozen), with my all time favorites being Zelda ones Hasbro (I think) put out. I got rid of them long ago, but they were awesome. 🙂

    Found some pics of them:


  15. So my wife and I recently started exchanging Christmas lists with each other since we both have very different hobbies and likes. This year, when I threw mine together for her, as I was going through it I had a vivid flashback of my late 80's and 90's self making lists of things I needed from Radio Shack or wherever I was going. Of course, my modern Radio Shack is mostly Amazon. lol

    My 2021 list includes ceramic, electrolytic, and variable capacitors, trimpots, diodes, prototyping PCBs, de-soldering wick, a component tester, a specialized lead kit for my multimeter, and a few other electronic related items and tools, you get the idea. So instead of spending time wandering my local Radio Shack stores looking for parts, now I am doing from the comfort of my home. So many memories, and to be honest, while I love the conveniences of shopping at home (especially as I get older), I do sometimes miss the days of going to physical shops and looking for what I need.

    Though, I am sure my wife looked at my list and shook her head, I know I do whenever I see the things she wants. 😛

    So what about you? Do you do lists? What's on you list for this year? Does any of it bring back memories of years gone by?

    • Like 1
  16. On 12/5/2021 at 11:32 PM, Cyber said:

    You know, this one is actually very true. I get the sarcasm, that MCUs are often used by a programmer as an overkill in cases where you could just put a few resistors/transistors etc. But MCUs nowdays are pretty mach fast, cheap and approachable. And sometimes it as actually more clever to use MCU even for a basic task, because such implementation could be more understandable, more cutomizable and even more reliable.

    Remember power button implementation in X16? MCU was chosen, because implementation with simple components was not reliable enougn.

    And now same fate is hanging in a ballance for PS/2. X16 might end up with MCU controlling PS/2 interface.

    I am vastly more knowledgeable when it comes to electronics (hardware) than I am with programming (software), but I still did that exact thing.

    Building myself an AM/FM radio, just because I want to, and it morphed from a simple no MCU all analog project, into a programmable Arduino powered touchscreen unit. So now, I'm  doing a second "retro" all analog one, becasue, why not.

    I built my wife a simple Arduino powered EMF meter, now I'm building her a second more advanced one,  with more "options", for her ghost hunting hobby. An EMF detector needs no MCU's, it's a very simple circuit, yet here I am spending days planning, programming, and building something that would normally take hours at most.

    So no one is safe, especially if your learning something new. 😆



    r_1072889_tCvNk.jpg.1a33bc033e88462d05838667891edb11.jpg u608yj2uacv01.jpg.9d102b2c1ca2d5468ca1b9ddb4de771c.jpg





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  17. Since it's been a while, and I have been spending time playing with Arduino, I found these amusing. 🙂


    arduino60367644.jpg.3f5c58b34ce6bbbb89c3b70aa8bd03d1.jpg ard62459579.jpg.34e9b415caaab4e394a78195f2a76a27.jpg


    arduino-coding-works.jpg.8a750fa67f3de41e118fc22927c12c20.jpgArduinoEngi.jpg.1f8644c58e77fe587000fa37112fafdd.jpg humor-computer-programming.jpg.0d78149e8d1dc0742326d68a7419630c.jpg




    Also, whenever you try and learn anything new... haha



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