Category Archives: Programmable Logic

An SPI flash and iCE40UP FPGA programmer

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Before designing my iCE40UP development board, I knew I would need some kind of programmer for the SPI flash memory that would hold the design it ran. I’d already discounted the idea of using an off-the-shelf programmer: it would add more cost to the project, and it was a far too “easy” solution. Therefore I was going to build my… Read more »

Design and build of a Lattice iCE40UP development board

It’s been another nine months since the last post. I will not dwell on the reasons for the lack of updates, except to say I have been busy with my projects; I just haven’t had the enthusiasm to post here until now. However the next post will go over some smaller projects I’ve completed recently, but this post is dedicated… Read more »

Designing a 32 bit ISA

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As mentioned at the bottom of the previous post, I’ve been designing a new 32 bit processor, and this post is concerned with the design of that processor’s Instruction Set Architecture. The objectives for this project are as follows: To learn as much as possible from the experience To leverage what I learned making my previous 16 bit processor To… Read more »

Building the MAXI030

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While working on the design for MAXI030 I completed another project: a new workbench microscope. After watching various videos on the topic, I came to the conclusion that a setup with just a camera and large TFT screen would be best for me, ie. one without eye pieces. I have various things wrong with my eyes, including poor stereoscopic vision,… Read more »

The build of a video and sound card for MIDI020

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Three PCBs arrived promptly from JLCPCB: The version 2 Test+SRAM board The version 2 Ethernet+Printer+Joystick board The version 1 Video+Sound board The version 1 of the top two boards are described at the bottom of the post about the  MIDI020 68020 computer, if you haven’t read it. The first job was to build up the version 2 Test+SRAM board. Whereupon… Read more »

The design of a video and sound card for MIDI020

For the last few weeks I’ve been working on the design of a video card for my 68020 based computer, MIDI020. Though it will principally be a video card, it makes sense to include sound generation functionality as well, and I’ve been looking at a couple of approaches to this. Though I could look at using an FM synthesis IC,… Read more »

MIDI020 build progress

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The build of MIDI020 is nearly finished. There’s been some hickups along the way, but I have managed to overcome them. My order to jlcpcb.com consisted of three boards: The MIDI020 main board The Test+SRAM expansion card The Ethernet+Printer+Joystick expansion card To make things interesting, and because I wanted to try them out, each came with a solder paste stencil…. Read more »

MAXI000 build complete and thinking about next steps

The physical construction of MAXI000 is complete: It looks good with the SIMM installed. I first attached the joystick parts. Testing the 9 pin Atari joystick went exactly as expected, as did testing the buttons on the Game port joystick I have. After writing a quick test routing for the SPI based MCP3002 (PDF) ADCs, I quickly encountered a problem… Read more »