FPGABee is a hardware emulation of a Microbee - the classic Aussie home computer of the 80's!

Photos

Version 2 Photos

CP/M Boot Screen

Booting CP/M after getting the disk controller working:

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Peripheral Control Unit (PCU) Menu

The PCU menu, provides support for disk swapping and soft-resetting the machine

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Colour Graphics

Showing off the new colour capabilities of version 2:

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Custom CRTC Modes

FPGABee version 2 fully supports all the 6545 CRTC screen metric registers. This game re-programs the video to an 8x8 character cell, and works flawlessly:

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Muncher

Another classic game:

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Version 1 Photos

Boot Screen

FPGA board, keyboard and VGA monitor, with FPGABee at boot screen:

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Typing a Basic Program

Once the keyboard was working I could type a simple program

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PCG Graphics

The Microbee supports "hi-res" graphics using a programmable character set, which works in FPGABee:

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Robot Fire

Robot Fire was one of the games I wrote and sold for Microbee.

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and it's completely playable:

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Hardware

Nexys-3 Board

Here's a close up view of the Nexys-3 board.

I've not had any luck getting the Nexys' USB keyboard support working so for the moment I've hacked a PS2 connector into one of the PMod ports - which also required picking up 5V from an on-board jumper since the PMod only provides 3.3V - which wouldn't reliably drive any of my keyboards.

The black cable to the right is power - which I've got wired to a USB port on the side of my other desktop monitor.

VGA connector is at the top.

The 4-digit 7-segment display I'm using for debugging which in this photo is showing the contents of the 6545 Light Pen register. The Microbee uses this register for keyboard input so the 0303 = 30 is the scan code of the last key I typed, not sure where the lower nibble 3 came from.

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Speaker

For sound, a speaker is connected to one of the PMod ports on the Nexys3 and is driven though a transistor and a couple of resistors.

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