News about Amstrad CPC, PCW, Notepad NC100 NC150 NC200, PDA600 and also Amstrad PC




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PunyInform v2.2 by Fredrik Ramsberg and Johan Berntsson to write text adventure games

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PunyInform v2.2 by Fredrik Ramsberg and Johan Berntsson is a library written in Inform 6 to create adventure game (pure text, no graphic support contrary to DAAD) using the Z-machine virtual machine which will run on 8bit computers (or more recent computers too). PunyInform has a parser, knowing of common verbs and a framework to write adventure games.

PunyInform is based on the Inform 6 library written by Graham Nelson. Its goal is to make easily adventure games in Inform 6, with a manual describing the differences between the official library and PunyInform..

Games using PunyInform can be compiled in z3, z5 and z8 format (z3 being the best format for 8bit computers, other formats have more features). Compared to the Inform 6 library, it means that there is no support for the Glulx virtual machine but z3 format is important as Inform 6 doesnt support it.

To compile games written with PunyInform, you should use the Inform 6 compiler maintained by David Kinder. Binaries are available on if-archive. PunyInform needs Inform v6.34 (or more).

They are tutorials to write adventure game with PunyInform (end of the page).

To try your game after compilation, you can use WinFrotz by David Kinder, to create map easily you can use Trizbort.



Changing the Real Time Clock of an Amstrad PPC 512 by Retro Theory

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After his video Amstrad PPC512 ISA Expansion Board XTIDE Network Sound PPC640, Retro Theory is showing how to replace the actual RTC chip with another compatible component with its own battery (good for 10 years). You will have some unsoldering work to solder the new Dallas DS12887 RTC inside the Amstrad PPC.





Amstrad Diagnostics ROM v0.91 by Noël Llopis (v1.0l WIP)

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Noel Llopis has written an Amstrad CPC diagnostic ROM which is already at version 0.91 and whose sources are available on Github.

The WIP version 1.0l will permit to test the keyboard, whatever the language (qwerty/azerty).

Changes since v0.8 :

  • Fixed ROM test hanging from upper ROM builds
  • Detecting and testing all upper RAM up to 4MB (it can take a LONG time to test the full 4MB!)
  • Esc aborts upper RAM test
  • C3 configuration test uses a pixel not visible on screen
  • Paging out M4 lower ROM to access system ROM
  • No need to press a key after low RAM tests
  • Holding ESC or Fire for 2 seconds exits keyboard test



A new version of Martine is available (v0.28)

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Martine v0.28.0 is an utility converting JPG and PNG images to Overscan screen or window for Amstrad CPC (and Plus series). The last available version is v0.28 which was released the 26th February. It is available for Windows, MacOS, ARM64 and linux.





USIfAC II:Convert a PC or USB stick to Amstrad HDD,access DSK and much more for 23 euros

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Universal Serial Interface for Amstrad CPC II (a.k.a. USIfAC II or... THE GOTEK KILLER FOR AMSTRAD CPC! :D) by Ikonsgr is an evolution of his previous Design USIfAC (with which is fully compatible), based on a modern and much more powerful 40pin 18F47Q10@64Mhz 8bit PIC microcontroller, which offers many new amazing features :

  • Completely "from the scratch" project,based on a modern 8bit PIC 16F1579@32Mhz MicroController! (all other serial interface projects, use the rather old, expensive and bulky 40pin 16C550 UART chip)
  • Very easy to use by only two BASIC commands, INP() and OUT!
  • Completely free DIY project, rather easy and cheap to make (total cost for the DIY kit +all extra parts, would be less than 6euros!)
  • SUPER FAST loading of many games/programs, DIRECTLY from the PC!(see "Direct Load" function in User's Guide, and here is a list of games already tested and working)
  • Easy and fast transfer of dsk images directly to Amstrad CPC disks!
  • Easy and fast individual file transfer (check link for 1000's of games extracted from dsk images)directly from/to Amstrad's Disks!
  • Equipped with a reset button and a pause switch for Amstrad CPC!

For more informations check the CPCWiki link and the video made by Crazy Piri (french inside).





Amstrad PPC512/640 ISA Expansion Board by Retro Theory

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Thanks to Youtube who proposed me a video by Retro Theory called Amstrad PPC512 ISA Expansion Board XTIDE Network Sound PPC640 where is he testing his ISA expansion board using the 2 connectors at the back of the Amstrad PPC 512 or 640.

Check the description of the video for the github page with the pcb files and the components list.

So in this video he is testing an XTIDE, memory card (to 640 Kb and some UMB), sound card using the unisound (universal sound driver) and a CGA/EGA card. So he launchs Prince of Persia with OPL2 (sound blaster) and EGA.

More Amstrad content should appear on his youtube channel later as states in the commentaries, so stay tuned and subscribe to his channel like I did.




Amstrad Diagnostics ROM v0.8 by Noël Llopis and video using it

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Noel Llopis has written an Amstrad CPC diagnostic ROM which is already at version 0.8 and whose sources are available on Github.

You can see the ROM being used in a video on Youtube about repairing a floppy disk controller. I invite you to see his other interesting videos.




New v2.0.7 of the firmware for the wifi card M4 Board by Duke

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The M4 Board which let you add wifi on your Amstrad CPC just got another firmware v2.0.7.

Changes since v2.0.6 :

  • Changed behaviour of RMR "ghost" register to support FutureOS and IMPdraw running from ROM on Amstrad PLUS
  • Added C_ROMLOW command to map in and out lowerrom(s) on the fly
  • NMIROM.BIN is now loaded from microSD card root by default, if present, otherwise internal HACK MENU is used

New HACK Menu improvements by Cebe74 (Thanks!) :

  • Reorganized displayed layout
  • Menu keyboard shortcuts
  • Improve memory dump feature


PunyInform v2.1 by Fredrik Ramsberg to write text adventure games

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PunyInform v2.1 by Fredrik Ramsberg and Johan Berntsson is a library written in Inform 6 to create adventure game (pure text, no graphic support contrary to DAAD) using the Z-machine virtual machine which will run on 8bit computers (or more recent computers too). PunyInform has a parser, knowing of common verbs and a framework to write adventure games.

PunyInform is based on the Inform 6 library written by Graham Nelson. Its goal is to make easily adventure games in Inform 6, with a manual describing the differences between the official library and PunyInform..

Games using PunyInform can be compiled in z3, z5 and z8 format (z3 being the best format for 8bit computers, other formats have more features). Compared to the Inform 6 library, it means that there is no support for the Glulx virtual machine but z3 format is important as Inform 6 doesnt support it.

To compile games written with PunyInform, you should use the Inform 6 compiler maintained by David Kinder. Binaries are available on if-archive. PunyInform needs Inform v6.34 (or more).

They are tutorials to write adventure game with PunyInform (end of the page).

To try your game after compilation, you can use WinFrotz by David Kinder, to create map easily you can use Trizbort.