A few ideas.

append delete Meshuggah333

Here's a few of the ideas I've had dispersed a bit everywhere on the web over the time I had followed the Mega65 project. This is as much as for me to remember these than for others to talk about.
- Having stereo audio ins/outs/gnd pins on the cart port : Allows to build audio expansions in carts, games with their own synth builtin, all these could be combined with the SIDs via simple analog mixing. This idea come form the Nintendo Famicom which do exactly that but in mono form.
- Having the joystick port compatible with Sega Genesis/Megadrive gamepads so all buttons could be used in games. These aren't fully compatible with computers relying on the 2 buttons Atari style DB9 joystick standard IIRC. It's been used a lot on MSXs lately with a little adapter to play games patched to take advantage of the extra buttons. I don't know how feasible it is looking at the C64 standard but that would be nice.
- Limit the max resolution to 1080p as it would instantly make the thing compatible with almost every HDTV out there and preserve the retro "computer to TV" feel IMO. Most TV, even if not 1080p native, will scale down to the resolution of their physical screen res. HDMI output is a must has it could provide sound along the video, even if some sort of ADC would be necessary.

That's all I have in mind right now, I'll post more if my brain cooperate :D

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append delete #1. MikeAlex

I would add that a version without a floppy disk drive would be nice (keep the case as is and don't put the drive in ;-) ), in order to lower the cost of the machine.

All the best for your project!

append delete #2. MIRKOSOFT

Ok, but why leave case untouched?
I'm user of Mega 65 and C128 coder.
Long time I was preffering diskettes 1581, later FD-4000, now like time goes, I see that Commodores still missing USB. With my C128 I'm using CF cards.
Better than leave case untouched without disk drive is to add numeric keypad - this keypad can missing only planned laptop...and forget floppies.

append delete #3. MikeAlex

I totally agree with you Mikrosoft! My aim was to keep the costs as low as possible and designing a new case may be raising them. But yeah, a numpad would be great instead of a deprecated storage technology...

append delete #4. Deft


MEGA65 is a modular system. You don't need to use or buy a floppy drive if you don't like one. SD-cards are and will always be supported. However, basis for the MEGA65 is the C65 so we are starting with it's original case. There might be other versions from us but I think you should just build YOUR perfect machine YOURSELF ;) We will try to help you in the process and in sharing your progress with the community if you like...


append delete #5. LGB

I think, numpad is matter of taste. Eg I never used that on PC either, and I would be happy to forget that on PC too. Eg it uses too much place on a notebook. But it's again what people are used to have. Some other people would be able to "kill" for numpad, I know :) The "deprecated storage technology part" is interesting, well, some can even say that a 8 bit system is also deprecated technology, and you can use a modern x86, ARM, whatever CPU instead. While the main purpose of Mega65/C65GS as far as I can see is to have a C65 after all (though with very major developments!), but still, a "retro" machine as a modern interpretation, and using floppy is also "retro" and part of the original C65. Ok, I have to admit, that I don't like floppies either :) :) Well, it seems everybody would love different things, and it's not easy to say that someone is "wrong" or "right", that's matter of taste, and this post was only my personal opinion, of course.

append delete #6. LoveMega65

I want a disk drive for my Mega65 :) So for people who do want a disk drive, for people who would love to have the disk drive for the full retro feel it would be great to give people that option as well. For people who do not want disk drive they can have that choice too. :)

append delete #7. gardners

As hinted at above, changing the case will be SUPER EXPENSIVE because of the injection moulding tooling costs. Just leaving out the floppy drive (or perhaps replacing it with a CF card reader in the same slot) would be much easier. Note that floppy drives are only a few $ each, so it isn't really a big deal for the price. And as Deft has mentioned, while we will be making MEGA65s the way that we think that they should be, you are all free to take, use and adapt what we are creating, and that this just adds to the community.


append delete #8. LoveMega65

I am happy! :D Disk drive it is then! :D

append delete #9. JohnD

I certainly want a disk drive in mine as it will enhance the retro feel of the machine.

I'm assuming the drive will be a high density and that the hardware will support it. It will be an interesting project to extend the 1581 format to support 1.6MB disks.


append delete #10. Ratteler

IMHO, the the old C=65 case was ridiculous when Doug Cotton showed me the picture of it at the last Amigaworld in NYC. I was working at the CMD booth. :-)

I actually had some hack that would let me use the 128 numeric keypad in C=64 mode.

We need USB keyboard and mouse support on whatever board enters final production, and the case should have the ability to change the keyboard "plate" on any case so we can keep keyboard costs down and mount whatever we want int here.

Take a look at the mechanical keyboard options on Massdrop. There are plenty of options that will allow custom keycaps and keep that Commodore keyboard feel without locking us into some custom keyboard option that will make keyboard production a nightmare.

Also a Floppy drive is idiotic, IMHO. Again... make it a plate option so those who want it can get it, and those who don't care can use the space for whatever we want.

:: @Ratteler added on 18 Feb ’16 · 21:36

The second drive from this picture by Bo Zimmerman should be how all drives are hooked up. That is brilliant.

append delete #11. MIRKOSOFT

I mean that floppy drive today can be only option.
I'm C128 programmer and always using numpad.
When we look at M65 we can see it in two ways:
Retro style - originally looking C65 like w/ FDD
New style - look for example at C128 DL prototypes and adjust cursor keys at CRSR position and originally cursor keys can be replaced by additional C65 Fn keys
Or third: Make <any> case where fits Nexys4DDR with all enhancements together and leave user to select his own keyboard with option USB, PS/2, Commodore and the same option for mouse. Of course it needs USB supporting hub. Separate floppy can have C1565 design.
Me personally have at home Nexys4DDR and want to place it temporary to C1541 case...


append delete #12. Solei

For the complete ready to run package, i am voting for the original c65 like case with built in FDD - Since this is a c65 on steroids, and the case and keyboard originally designed by Commodore. There is some history to it, and the design should be kept as similar to the original machine as possible.

You can always connect external keyboards, replace the FDD with a sd2iec unit or something else yourself.

append delete #13. GianPieroDeLolliis

Why not think about a compact version of the computer without drive?

An optional drive could be still chain-connected on right side. I got this conclusion because the machine has the built-in SD card reader and/or many people also have a real 15x1 drive (or SD2IEC device) so I think the 3.5" drive is not really necessary. It will also help to get price lower.
Anyway, if the floppy reader can be connected as a "sidecar" we can almost reach the original design of the machine.
This option make space for some other accessories, like a keypad connected on right side.

This is a quick mockup I made:

append delete #14. Solei

Read post #7.

The mold is already made, and it would be much better to use their resources on making a proper motherboard and core.

That case you're suggesting isn't authentic in design like the one with the built in FDD bay is. We should refrain from changing the Commodore 's original case design, as it will ruin the illusion of sitting with a real c65.


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