Archives for the month May 2017 of Genesis8 Amstrad Page







An Amstrad GX4000 console was tortured to create a PC Engine SD by Starforce Pi

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Seen on Gameblog (french site), each time a PC Engine SD is created, a poor Amstrad GX4000 console must die !

If you love the japanese PC Enngine console it's not a problem, but for the Amstrad CPC generation, it's a crime !

Screenshots incoming soon.



8BP v030, a RSX library to create Amstrad CPC games in Basic, and a new 8bp game

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Jose Javier Garcia Aranda has written a new version of 8BP v30 (8bits de poder : 8bits of power), a RSX library to write Amstrad CPC games in basic (26 Kb max). You can download 8bp on github.

Fresh Fruits and Vegetables is the last game programmed with 8BP and showed at the RetroMadrid 2017 meeting.




CPC 128K, an Amstrad CPC 6128 clone by Zaxon with some upgrades included

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Seen on the Amstrad.EU Facebook group, a clone of an Amstrad CPC 6128 created by Zaxon with the following features :

  • 128 Kb RAM
  • DDI-1 compatible floppy interface
  • PS/2 keyboard interface
  • RGB video out on minidin 8 (video cable included
  • CRTC is UM6845R
  • Two slots for extensions cards

Il fabrique et vends également son clone d'Amstrad CPC 6128.





You dont want to vote for either Macron or Le Pen ? Then vote for JB le Daron !

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For french people, it's right this week-end, we are going to vote either for Macron or for Le Pen. So Votez pour moi by Coktel Vision (1985) is in a youtube video by JB le Daron. It's a management game where you are one candidate for the french presidential election. What will you do to get elected by the good french people ?




Less Youtube videos announced so you dont get an indigestion

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When I was only announcing Youtube videos of some youtubbers (Xyphoe, CholoCPC, ChinnyVision...), it was nice enough. But lately with more Youtubbers, I cant announce them all in the news, otherwise you would get rapidly a Youtube indigestion. So I will show the last 10 I added (see above), but still will announce some of them, because I like the game or any other reason (good I hope).




Some sweet music tonight ? Three remix of Thanatos for the price of one (piano and guitar) !

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Thanatos remixed by DJ ThumpHeadAche is a superb adaptation of the Thanatos music, you should really listen to it.

Already mentionned in 2011, a beautiful play of Thanatos on piano by Alpiso is quite a hit too (Alpiso Youtube's channel has more Amstrad CPC tunes).

Warming some old 2011 news is still useful, the next link wasnt good in 2011 (corrected now), so what about listening to a Thanatos guitar arrangement played by Pacopersia this time ?

For the longplay video by cholo go to :

loading screen of the Amstrad CPC game Thanatos




A column about adventure games (Eight Bit Adventurer) in the next issues o f Eight Bit Magazine

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Eight Bit Magazine will print this Eight Bit Adventurer column by Stuart Williams about the adventure games on 8bit compouters. Stuart is already writing in Eight Bit Magazine about Apple computers, and an article the apple adventurer will be in the incoming issue 3. For more informations, go read Retro Computing News.

Issue 3 of Eight Bit Magazine can be pre-ordered.



HxC, Gotek, and now the DDI3 USB Floppy Emulator for Amstrad CPC 464 by Zaxon

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The problem with a disk drive emulator HxC or Gotek for an Amstrad CPC 464 is that you still need a DDI-1 interface which is a disk drive controler. It's not anymore a problem with the DDI3 USB Floppy Emulator for Amstrad CPC464 by Zaxon which integrates the DDI and the USB management.

For more informations about the DDI3 USB Floppy Emulator go on Indie Retro News.

The video is done by Novabug.





Solution of the RPG game Fer and Flamme written by Hervé Lange and his interview on Amstrad.EU

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Karamoon wrote a solution for the Amstrad CPC role playing game Fer and Flamme created by Hervé Lange on Gros Pixels.

The CRPG addict tried to finish Fer et Flamme (english this time).

You can find an interview of the author Hervé Lange on Amstrad.EU (french) made in March 2011 by NoRecess.





CHIPNSFX tracker+player suite by CNGSoft, a multi-platform tracker and player for Z80 systems

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CHIPNSFX tracker+player suite is a musical software suite focused on lightweight code and data (the player itself is under 950 bytes long, and can be as small as 550 bytes) for the Amstrad CPC, Sinclair Spectrum 128 and MSX1 platforms; other hardwares can be supported with minor modifications in the player code, such as Sega Master System. The tracker can create songs up to 256 patterns long, patterns can be up to 96 ticks long, and there can be as many as 255 different instruments. The player itself is hardware-independent, the programmer can provide the external functions required to make it work on any Z80-based platform. CHIPNSFX was succesfully used in past projects such as :

screenshot of the CHIPNSFX tracker by CNGSoft



Restoring and modding an Amstrad CPC 6128 by C-E with photos

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After the reparation of an Amstrad Notepad NC200 by C-E, it's the turn of the reparation and modding of an Amstrad CPC 6128 (copy and paste of a CPCWiki message with the permission of C-E, thanks to him).

Last time I went to Spain I was digging in my old bedroom, that is basically a time capsule that takes you back to the 80s/90s, and I found my original CPC 6128 hidden in a closet along with the color monitor that came with it. There was also an old PC PSU I was using to power the computer, a 3.5" drive, a few home made cables... It seems that I put everything there when I was given a bunch of Pluses for free in 1997. After that, I was mainly using a 6128 Plus. The poor guy was pretty battered: very yellow keyboard that is probably not original (those keys look like coming from a Plus); a crappy ABBA switch hanging from a pair of cables; lots of scratches here and there...

However, despite its condition, this Amstrad is still very important for me. I spent my childhood with the machine, me and my friends played countless games on it, I used it to program a lot of crappy stuff and a few "games"... in summary, lots of great memories. So, when I came back to UK I brought the guy with me to restore and mod it :)

This is what I am planning to do:

  • New caps
  • Dual OS
  • Centronics ports
  • ABBA switch (a decent one)
  • Reset switch
  • 5VCPC
  • Floppy drive restoration

and, if possible, internal RAM expansion.

Externally nothing will change besides the little hole for the reset switch and the case modification required to fit the Centronics ports. It will look like a Schneider 6128.

façade avant de l'Amstrad CPC CPC 6128

façade avant de l'Amstrad CPC 6128 et switch

arrière de l'Amstrad CPC 6218

So... I finally had time to do something with my old 6128. It is still a work in progress but I thought that I could give you an update and show some pics :) . The first thing I did was just to remove the board from the case and clean it a bit. Here is how it looked before cleaning. It is a 6128 board version 2.

carte mère de l'Amstrad CPC 6128 après nettoyage

Then, I removed all the electrolytic caps, the 40015 and the solder that was filling the holes for the centronic ports. To remove the 40015 I simply cut the pins and then they were removed one by one. I was using the old good braid all the time. Here is the stripped board.

carte mère de l'Amstrad CPC 6128 sans les condensateurs et le 40015

Before going on, I think that it is worth saying that it is NOT necessary to remove all the electrolytic caps in a CPC 6128. The only one that can be problematic if you install the 5VCPC is the cap near the power socket. Bryce found that if it is not OK the computer will likely reset. I just decided to replace them with high grade new ones because I felt like doing it, nothing else :) . In any case, if you decide to change the electrolytics, pay attention to one that is near the AY, it is a 50V 1uF NON POLAR cap.

The next step was to prepare the socket for the dual OS. I followed this tutorial from Bryce that describes all the necessary steps in great detail. This is my modded socket :

socket pour la ROM DUAL OS de l'Amstrad CPC 6128

After this I recapped the board and soldered the socket in place :

condensateurs et puce 40015 réinstallés sur la carte mère de l'Amstrad CPC 6128

Finally I installed the new ports. I attached them to the board first using screws and nuts and then I soldered the leads. There are quite a few, but it is still a reasonably fast process.

ports centronics rajoutés sur la carte mère de l'Amstrad CPC 6128

ports centronics rajoutés sur la carte mère de l'Amstrad CPC 6128

ports centronics rajoutés sur la carte mère de l'Amstrad CPC 6128

And it seems that it works... :)

l'Amstrad CPC 6128 en état de bon fonctionnement



Three clones of the Dk'tronics mouse interface left, created by Bryce and made by Talrek

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There are still three clones left of the mouse interface sold for 27,50 € (France) or 31,50 € (worldwide). They are made by Talkrek, it's a clone of the Dk'tronics mouse interface created by Bryce.



Not without my Amstrad, an article in a spanish newspaper about Amstrad Eterno 2017

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I am late, but No sin mi Amstrad is an article by Álvaro Corazón Rural with pictures by Jelena Arsic seen on Jot Down web site an also in a paper edition it seems. It's an article about the Amstrad Eterno 2017 meeting which held in Barcelona on the 18th March 2017.




Samdisk v3.8.10 by Simon Owen, Amstrad CPC disks tranfers on PC

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SAMdisk v3.8.10 by Simon Owen is out since the 18th December.

The utility supports transfers between floppy disks and disk images, and is designed to work with almost any soft-sectored disk format compatible with the PC floppy controller, including some copy-protected formats.

Low-level floppy device access requires the fdrawcmd.sys driver to be installed.

  • added read and write support .qdos (QL) disk images
  • added --irregular option for blind output image if first track isn't regular
  • added --fill to set filler byte for regular formats
  • fixed setting perpendicular mode for 1Mbps data rate
  • fixed reading directly to single-sided formats from a:/b:
  • fixed short data indicator showing on no-data sectors
  • fixed raw output not using source format fill byte for missing sectors
  • changed raw output to allow blank head 1 to mirror head 0 format

There is also a Samdisk 4.0 beta version on github for windows, linux and MacOS.




Nemesis the Warlock, remixes of the original music by Rob Hubbard, and video gameplay

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Another game with Rob Hubbard music : Nemesis the Warlock with a gameplay video by Amstrad Maniaque.

They are 2 nice remixes of this music :





Amstrad Sang pour Sang by Zisquier, the Amstrad CPC music with some metal added in it

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Thanks to the Facebook Amstrad.eu CPC 464 / 664 / 6128 group, I stumbled on the r Zisquier youtubber who dont hesitate to remix Amstrad CPC music in metal mode. Will you recognize Barbarian, Nebulus and Antiriad ?

Dont hesitate to look for his other gameplay videos of Amstrad CPC games.




Caprice Forever v2017-5, an Amstrad CPC emulator by Frédéric Coste for Windows

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Caprice Forever v2017-5 by Frédéric Coste is a modified version of the Caprice emulator (by Ulrich Doewich) for windows.

  • Add cheat script keywords
  • Fix FastFDC crashes when trying to read multi-sided disk image
  • Play CSW tape images
  • Convert WAV to CSW tape images (see Hints)
  • Fix game controller detection issues (Xbox 360)
  • Fix FDC write sector issues
  • Fix FDC read sector regression (Dimension6)
  • Use « Keep original aspect ratio » option for fullscreen display
  • Add PlayCity audio channels
  • Fix minor bugs


Next-Generation Speech Synthesizer for the Amstrad CPC 464 by Michael Wessel

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This Next-Generation Speech Synthesizer for the Amstrad CPC 464 by Michael Wessel started with a breadboard and now a PCB. For the moment, they are 4 videos of the interface card on Youtube :

It uses an Emic 2, the other components in the design are : Atmega 328 for implementing a parallel (CPC) to serial interface, to bride from the CPC to the Emic 2; a 74LS373 flip flop, 2 G16v8 PLD's for address decoding and generation of the chip select signal, and some other gates. The hardware extension is at address &F9E1. The speech synthesizer requires almost no driver, since the microcontroller and the Emic 2 are implementing an intelligent interface. The Basic program shown in the videos is implementing a simple protocol, but basically, to talk to the speech synthesizer, one only needs to write bytes to port address &F9E1 (e.g., using OUT in BASIC). Interestingly, the interface from the CPC's parallel data bus to the Atmel was tricky to implement.

It isnt compatible at the momeent with the other Amstrad CPC synthesizers : Dktronics and SSA-1. Emic 2 requires Start- (S) and End-Token (CR) - whereas Dktronics and SSA-1 simply send the allophones. Emic 2 works buffered, asynchronously, Dk'tronics and SSA-1 work synchronously. To make it compatible with SSA-1 and Dk'tronics, it would a) need to translate between allophone bytes and Emic 2 "equivalents", and b) figure out start- and end-token and shuffle them into the data stream (maybe based on a speech pause timing criterion). Not so obvious. Speech won't be synchronous, but maybe doable.?






New version of Arnold, the Amstrad CPC emulator by Kevin Thacker

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Arnold build 20170513 is the new version of the Amstrad CPC emulator by Kevin Thacker.



New release of CHIPNSFX by CNGSoft, a multi-platform tracker and player for Z80 systems

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Second release of CHIPNSFX tracker+player suite by CNGSoft : new command line options -F (48000 Hz) and -L (linear amplitude). A blue bar makes the active items stand out. Minor changes in the documentation file.



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