Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Get the jig' with it!

Not a "proper" update, really, but I've attached the PCB, screen and PSU to a spare piece of plywood which allows for easier handling and development. All necessary connectors are reachable as well, so I'll be able to hook up I/O and even solenoids to test things as well.

Since I am developing outside the box (no pun intended) this will help a lot to keep things tidy.

1) Piece of scrap plywood with components attached. Not much to say really. ;)

Monday, July 17, 2017

Pixels be rollin'...

It is with immense satisfaction the first few pixels has been drawn with the new motherboard!

Everything is very basic and the frame is currently hardcoded in 8 shades, but runs well in 16 as well (it's slightly difficult to see without having a proper image though). But it is running the new render routine with interrupt transfers and as a CoreTimer service.

1) Motherboard and DMD, sitting in a tree... The "pulsing" effect on top and bottom rows are simply
8 different shades being drawn. The timing of each color has not yet been adjusted and the screen overlay
is not in place either, which dims pixels and thus make each shade more pronounced.

I'll have to redo the main project file as well, as the one I did the PCB-tests on no longer works. I don't know why and haven't really investigated - now I can implement each section properly and without any guess work instead.

Next I'll get some basic DMD functionality in place before going on to other components.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

It's all the mind

The progress as of lately has been mostly theoretical and the new PCB has been untouched.

Been really busy with life in general while the machine has been thoroughly playtested during parties, birthdays and integrity checked by my kids. It holds up, mostly, but there are weird bugs that I believe cannot be fixed in the current state. Weird stuff happens and cross-circuit spikes cause things to trigger wrongfully and what not, and for some reason you can sometimes no longer drain the ball when you're on the second ball. This occurs at random, and when it happens totally unrelated buttons stop working, such as the Start-button, and the debug mode for the lights starts etc. Wiring is alright, but as I wrote, I believe cross-talk or voltage spikes are to blame.

I'm looking forward to four sweet weeks of uninterrupted work on the machine, which is when the new motherboard will be transplanted. Hopefully everything checks out and I can finish up the new wiring as well. Really looking forward to tidying up everything, getting the new code and video in place and get on with actual game programming!

Thoughts for another day;
Thinking about making the playfield artwork brighter, possibly remaking the artwork. But that'll be done once this playfield has gone fubar.