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Thread: The commodore 128

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    Pear (Level 6) Soviet Conscript's Avatar
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    Default The commodore 128

    well for no reason whatsoever my C64c decided to stop outputting video. seeing as i had a C128 laying around i decided to just hook that up in its place which has prompted me to ask a few questions

    1) the C128 has an output for RGB video. i'm guessing this won't work in C64 mode meaning i won't be able to play my C64 games in RGB and just have to stick with
    "commodore video (S-video)"

    2) things i've read say the C128 has "99.8%" compatibility with the C64. anyone know specificly what programs/games are the .2% that won't work?

    3) any games written specificly to take advantage of the C128's extra power worth getting? only thing i can think of is Ultima underworld has better sound? but i figure these games are better under DOS with a decent sound card anyways

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    Red (Level 21) Jorpho's Avatar
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    Default

    Ultima Underworld would have been a bit much for the C64 or C128 to handle, I would suspect. There's certainly no evidence of such a port at http://www.ultimacollectors.info/.

    Were you thinking of something else? Ultima V, perhaps?

    See also http://www.digitpress.com/forum/showthread.php?t=948 .
    Last edited by J'orfeaux; 02-16-2010 at 11:43 PM.
    "There is much pleasure to be gained from useless knowledge." --Bertrand Russel (attributed)

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    Pear (Level 6) Soviet Conscript's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jorpho View Post
    Ultima Underworld would have been a bit much for the C64 or C128 to handle, I would suspect. There's certainly no evidence of such a port at http://www.ultimacollectors.info/.

    Were you thinking of something else? Ultima V, perhaps?

    See also http://www.digitpress.com/forum/showthread.php?t=948 .
    i think your right, i ment Ultima V...i think. something about the 128 version haveing music and the c64 not

    acually....i think my 1702 may be dying as i'm haveing the same issue with the 128 and i'm even useing a diffrent video cable. seems like an almost 50/50 shot of getting video every time i power it all up.
    Last edited by Soviet Conscript; 02-17-2010 at 12:08 AM.

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    Cherry (Level 1)
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    The RGB output is not usable in C64 mode - it's for the 80 column output of the 128's VDC chip which is only in play when in 128 mode. The RGB connector includes a monochrome video out (sorry, can't remember which pin) so you can display 80 columns on your 1702 with the right cable, but readability is poor since the 1702 doesn't really have adequate resolution. If you really want to play around with the 80 column mode, you need a 1902, 2002, 1080, 1084, or 1084S monitor (or one of the Magnavox equivalents). Check that whatever monitor you get can handle digital RGBI as Commodore disabled that input on some of the late models, retaining only the analog RGB for Amiga use.

    Software-wise, very few 128-mode games were released. Infocom had some text adventures, Lodestar put out some 128 games (typical amateur stuff, though, and I should know since I wrote some of them) and there might have been a few others.

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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Soviet Conscript View Post
    1) the C128 has an output for RGB video. i'm guessing this won't work in C64 mode meaning i won't be able to play my C64 games in RGB and just have to stick with
    "commodore video (S-video)"
    The RGBI port on the C128 isn't really RGB in the sense that most people on this forum talk about it... when people talk about RGB video here, they're usually talking about *analog* RGB, while the C128 outputs *digital* RGB.

    The 128 has two separate video chips, and there is no connection between the 128's VIC-II and the RGBI port... the only way you get video from it is through the VDC chip. Unfortunately, while the VDC can handle higher resolutions, it lacks a lot of features that would make it useful for games (ie, no sprites, low colour depth, etc). It's basically there for productivity apps, like spreadsheets, word processors, and communication programs.

    2) things i've read say the C128 has "99.8%" compatibility with the C64. anyone know specificly what programs/games are the .2% that won't work?
    I don't think I've ever seen a list... but from what I've heard, the stuff that doesn't work is usually badly written programs that accidentally trigger registers that throw the 128 into FAST mode or things like that... poking memory that normally doesn't do anything on the C64.

    3) any games written specificly to take advantage of the C128's extra power worth getting? only thing i can think of is Ultima underworld has better sound? but i figure these games are better under DOS with a decent sound card anyways
    Yes, U5 has music on the 128. Unfortunately, it skips every time you take a step, which gets incredibly annoying. You're better off putting the music on a CD and listening to that in the background.

    I think the Rocky Horror Picture Show has 128 enhancements too, but I've never played it, so I don't really know.

    The 128's real benefits were in productivity, programming, and CP/M.

    --Zero

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    Pear (Level 6) Soviet Conscript's Avatar
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    hmmm, so theres almost no benifit of useing a 128 over a 64 if your primarily in it for games.
    what about the newer disk drive? right now i'm useing a 1541-II but if you pair the 128 with a 1570 or 1571 will you get faster load times with C64 games? is it any faster then useing a c64 fast load cart? (which i'm useing now)

    and while i'm talking about fast load carts, when i use this cart in a c64 i get a slightly diffrent load screen thats says "viper". now when i use it in the 128 i get a standard c64 loading screen.

    i found a wierd quark with my monitor which it didn't do before. when i initially turn everything on i get no screen regardless of if power on the monitor or 128 first. no matter how long i wait i don't get an image. i have to then turn the 128 off and then on again to get video output. wierd.
    Last edited by Soviet Conscript; 02-17-2010 at 01:25 PM.

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    Cherry (Level 1)
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    Quote Originally Posted by Soviet Conscript View Post
    hmmm, so theres almost no benifit of useing a 128 over a 64 if your primarily in it for games..
    Correct!

    Quote Originally Posted by Soviet Conscript View Post
    what about the newer disk drive? right now i'm useing a 1541-II but if you pair the 128 with a 1570 or 1571 will you get faster load times with C64 games? is it any faster then useing a c64 fast load cart? (which i'm useing now)
    In C64 mode, the 1570/1571 default to 1541 speed so will be no faster. There are some utilities that let you load a C64 program while in 128 mode (thus getting higher speed) then flip into C64 mode to run, but they're limited to single-load programs so not very useful. I've never seen benchmarks, but I think the 128/1571 combo is a little faster than an Epyx fastload cart.

    Quote Originally Posted by Soviet Conscript View Post
    and while i'm talking about fast load carts, when i use this cart in a c64 i get a slightly diffrent load screen thats says "viper". now when i use it in the 128 i get a standard c64 loading screen.
    That's odd, since any cart that contains C64 autoboot code should automatically flip the 128 into C64 mode. Not familiar with this "viper" though.

    Quote Originally Posted by Soviet Conscript View Post
    i found a wierd quark with my monitor which it didn't do before. when i initially turn everything on i get no screen regardless of if power on the monitor or 128 first. no matter how long i wait i don't get an image. i have to then turn the 128 off and then on again to get video output. wierd.
    No idea on that one. The 80col key on the 128 is in the up position, right?

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    Pear (Level 6) Soviet Conscript's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wookie View Post

    No idea on that one. The 80col key on the 128 is in the up position, right?
    yhep, just checked. though it was doing the same thing with my c64c as well

    i did think of one advantage, built in rest button......thats kinda nifty...i guess. i would probibly be more excited about it if my c64 wasn't already modded with one.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Soviet Conscript View Post
    yhep, just checked. though it was doing the same thing with my c64c as well

    i did think of one advantage, built in rest button......thats kinda nifty...i guess. i would probibly be more excited about it if my c64 wasn't already modded with one.
    you can use a paper clip on the user port to has a reset
    Aetherbyte: PC-Engine and more homebrew

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