Great TMS Video Chip Demo

Discuss computers from the Laser series, Time & Fun handhelds, etc.
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Mobsie
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Great TMS Video Chip Demo

Post by Mobsie » Wed Sep 07, 2016 7:26 am

Hi,

is a new Demo for the SVI-328 which use the same Video Chip then our Creativision.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=khcujJgtPv0

I like it!
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MADrigal
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Re: Great TMS Video Chip Demo

Post by MADrigal » Thu Sep 08, 2016 11:07 am

It is really nice! :-)
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carlsson
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Re: Great TMS Video Chip Demo

Post by carlsson » Thu Sep 08, 2016 1:38 pm

It requires a 64K cartridge, just like their previous demos.

Actually besides MSX, there doesn't seem to be a lot of demo scene going on for the VDP chips. The ColecoVision and ADAM people mainly program games. The TI-99/4(A) people do too, although there was a bit of discussion a while ago about making demos, and for what purpose. Smaller scenes like SVI-3x8, Sord M5, CreatiVision, Memotech MTX and so on are happy to see anything developed at all.
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Re: Great TMS Video Chip Demo

Post by carlsson » Mon Jan 30, 2017 10:18 am

Although it is not a VTech system, yesterday a new, very nice mega demo was released for the expanded TI-99/4A:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZhSUhE03XFw
http://www.pouet.net/prod.php?which=68783

As you know, it has the same VDP and PSG as the Creativision, but instead of a 2 MHz 6502 or 3.5 MHz Z80, it has a 3 MHz TMS-9900 CPU. While it in theory is 16-bit, the computer doesn't have its own memory refresh so IIRC the VDP has to handle that, bottlenecking it a very slow 8-bit computer with a measly 256 bytes CPU RAM (half as much as the Creativision) before the memory expansion.
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MADrigal
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Re: Great TMS Video Chip Demo

Post by MADrigal » Tue Jan 31, 2017 8:30 am

Thank you Carlsson. I was told about that "mega demo" a couple of days ago. I watched it and was stunned. That is really impressive!

It would be great to have demos of the same quality on the CreatiVision, however that demo clearly demonstrates the power of the TMS99xx!
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Re: Great TMS Video Chip Demo

Post by carlsson » Mon Jun 26, 2017 10:34 pm

Regarding the VDP, I read the other day that supposedly it was designed by Milton Bradley (the toy/game company) to be used in a 16-bit video game manufactured by Texas Instruments. It is not clear what is fact and what is fiction, but the gospel is that TI said "fool you!" to MB, grabbed the designs for the VDP and called their own. The video game eventually became the TI-99/4 computer series.

Probably they were cooperating on the project with a bit unclear agreements whose properties they were developing. I think I've read something similar about the relation between Mattel and GI too, how ideas and concept combined with technical know-how sometimes ends with disputes who has the rights to the technology.
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MADrigal
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Re: Great TMS Video Chip Demo

Post by MADrigal » Tue Jun 27, 2017 6:53 am

We will never know the truth.

I heard a similar 'rumour' about the CreatiVision, which claimed the console as designed by Korean manufacturer Oltron on behalf of Coleco, and then the design was sold to Vtech because Coleco apparently was not willing to proceed with Oltron.

Again, I have made my own investigations but unfortunately got into a dead end and could not confirm this :(
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Re: Great TMS Video Chip Demo

Post by carlsson » Tue Jun 27, 2017 9:57 am

True, we have discussed that before and the likelyhood that one and the same manufacturer - whoever it was - had several reference designs based on the TI custom chipset but with different CPUs attached to it, of which Coleco went with the Z80 design and the 6502 design was left for VTech to acquire.

Obviously the VDP and PSG originally were custom made for the TI/MB but at some point it appears to me the chips were offered to any system manufacturer, perhaps even second sourced, which is when they went from custom to on the shelf items. I'd love to find a reference to when it happened, or if it even happened simultaneously to the 99/4 release, in order to bring production volumes up and price per chip down. Then again does any system besides the TI computer use a 9918 without the A suffix to get NTSC composite video? That variant of the chip I think dates to 1981, which would be within the same year of the original CreatiVision, among possibly other designs. Or maybe a separate circuit to combine the Y, R-Y, B-Y into a composite or RF signal wasn't unthinkable, offering a market before the 9918A revision.
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Re: Great TMS Video Chip Demo

Post by ThomHa » Thu Mar 22, 2018 6:18 pm

Picking up some loose threads, far too late...

There's a cache of TMS development memos that strongly implies the chip was offered to third parties from day one, but TI took a long time to find any buyers and get production working properly. See e.g. The Video Display Processor Debacle from 1981. The chip already has a marketing team attached by then, and has been ready for 2.5 years, but they still haven't managed to ship production units.

Also, for a really impressive TMS demo check out HexTrain for the Memotech MTX. In one sense it's a big cheat: it's just streaming branching video from a modern mass-storage device but it's streaming it to a TMS9928. So a more charitable description might be that it's a pure-VDP demo, if the processing behind it were essentially an unexhaustable resource.
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Re: Great TMS Video Chip Demo

Post by MADrigal » Fri Mar 23, 2018 10:34 am

Wow that HexTrain game is really cool!!!
Thanks for your post
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