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68060 board for the NeXT slab
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Nitro
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Joined: 22 Oct 2005
Posts: 421
Location: Littleton, Colorado USA

PostPosted: Thu Jul 10, 2014 9:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Very nice work, this sounds promising. I have a new/old stock 68040 40mhz with the L88M mask (die shrink) that Iíd like to try at 66mhz.

I donít have a NEXTSTEP 3.3 machine running at the moment, but according to this post NEXTSTEP 3.3 originally shipped with gcc-2.5.8

gcc-2.95.3 for NEXTSTEP is available in the archives
http://www.nextcomputers.org/NeXTfiles/Software/NEXTSTEP/Developer/Languages/C/gcc.2.95.3.N.b.tar.gz

Hope that helps.
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gborgns



Joined: 27 Dec 2005
Posts: 29

PostPosted: Fri Jul 11, 2014 1:10 am    Post subject: Overclock vs. FPGA Reply with quote

My original design of the 50MHz Turbo Color slab (same one sdinet mentioned) is still online here at: http://www.nextcomputers.org/forums/viewtopic.php?t=56

66MHz is probably beyond the clocking ability of the legacy NeXT motherboards and the above mentioned modification (although I never tried it).

I would really be interested in an FPGA version of the 68040. It has the greatest possibility of increasing the CPU performance of the NeXT platform (past 50MHz) with minimal (or no) changes to the motherboard. I can even imagine a transparent, multiprocessor with a cache memory design, that would increase system performance substantially.

The design would be difficult (since the NeXT architecture does not use the "bus relinquish" that would allow the CPU to process extra cycles between bus cycles) but not impossible (FPGA's are really fast now).
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Turbo Color Slab, Tadpole P1000G and SS5
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degs



Joined: 21 Sep 2006
Posts: 34
Location: Conway, NH

PostPosted: Sat Jul 12, 2014 9:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the information and offers of help everyone! I just need to confirm my board makes sense and then send it to be fabricated. I'll post pictures of the board layout when I send it to be fabbed. I'm hoping to get this right on the first time through.

Regarding the NeXT, one could probably make a really fast 68040 on a modern FPGA, but the IC really is a mess. The best gain you would get would be from just adding cache. My current project is making an asynchronous FPGA on 14nm, and I think that I can justify doing the VHDL for a 68040. If that goes forward, that will be really exciting.

I really wish Apple would release the NeXTStep 3.3 source code, and then we'd really have good options for interesting hardware and software updates.
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t-rexky



Joined: 09 Jan 2011
Posts: 269
Location: Snowy Canada

PostPosted: Sat Jul 12, 2014 7:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

degs wrote:
I really wish Apple would release the NeXTStep 3.3 source code, and then we'd really have good options for interesting hardware and software updates.


I have tried many, many times, so very hard to get a positive response out of Apple. Most recently Rob Blessin also got involved and helped pass the letter that I drafted on behalf of the community to the right senior executives at Apple. Unfortunately we never even received an acknowledgement of receipt, let alone any other answer.

It is a real shame, but I am convinced that the real reason is the legal status quo of Unix ownership and licensing. The worst part of it is that back in the 90s one could purchase all source code from NeXT (excluding the black hardware specific drivers). And now it is all "lost" in the Apple vaults.

I would love to try again, but unless someone personally knows a good contact at Apple I think the chances are pretty much zero...
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tomaz



Joined: 15 Apr 2006
Posts: 149
Location: Sark

PostPosted: Sat Jul 19, 2014 8:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

degs wrote:
domiel wrote:
Sounds like a fun project but perhaps you should consider using an FPGA instead?
I wish that I was wealthy. It would cost 100k in masks and then about $1000 per wafer to make a cache heavy 68040 in a modern process. That'd be about 60 IC per wafer at least. There are some things to do with 100k that's sexier than getting a Ferrari.
Why don't you just make a few die using an MPW run? That will cost you an order of magnitude less. Do you need more than a handful of devices?
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degs



Joined: 21 Sep 2006
Posts: 34
Location: Conway, NH

PostPosted: Wed Jul 23, 2014 7:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

tomaz wrote:
Why don't you just make a few die using an MPW run? That will cost you an order of magnitude less. Do you need more than a handful of devices?


The MPW runs usually don't have my preferred mask options, which is why I seldom use MPW. MPWs are a perfectly good option, but the trick is getting the 5V IO in this case, and I think 130nm is the sweet spot for cost vs cache. I usually have extra masks for the 5V drivers, which are not standard. Of course, I could always slap it into a board and use discrete level shifters, but my current board looks to eat into the floppy space. I guess most people would trade a floppy for a faster CPU though.

Anyway, the best path is probably to just get a HDL description of a 68040, and then I could target it to anything. Currently, it's all just pleasant to think about. Smile
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cuby



Joined: 12 Jan 2006
Posts: 160
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 24, 2014 11:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

degs wrote:
Anyway, the best path is probably to just get a HDL description of a 68040, and then I could target it to anything. Currently, it's all just pleasant to think about. Smile

The TG68 core (used in the Minimig Amiga clone) has a 68020 variant (https://github.com/rkrajnc/minimig-de1/tree/master/minimig-src/). However, no MMU or FPU support so far, so building a 68030-based CPU replacement will take lots of additional work...

Building a Sun 3/50 on FPGA would be easier, since the machine used a 68020, the FPU was optional and the Sun MMU for the 68k machines is significantly less complex than the 68851 or the '030 MMU IIRC... but that won't help with NeXTstep, of course.

-- Michael
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degs



Joined: 21 Sep 2006
Posts: 34
Location: Conway, NH

PostPosted: Thu Sep 18, 2014 3:34 am    Post subject: Where's the alignment pin for the CPU? Reply with quote

I found this picture (below), and in this orientation I assume that the missing pin on the 68040 is on the upper left. Can someone with a socketed slab tell me if this is indeed the case?

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t-rexky



Joined: 09 Jan 2011
Posts: 269
Location: Snowy Canada

PostPosted: Thu Sep 18, 2014 11:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

On a TurboColor the keying for the missing pin is on the bottom left in the orientation you are showing. The top left with the dot and / or gold square markings designates pin #1. I think the non-turbo machines are identical in terms of orientation.
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degs



Joined: 21 Sep 2006
Posts: 34
Location: Conway, NH

PostPosted: Thu Sep 18, 2014 2:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

t-rexky wrote:
On a TurboColor the keying for the missing pin is on the bottom left in the orientation you are showing. The top left with the dot and / or gold square markings designates pin #1. I think the non-turbo machines are identical in terms of orientation.

Thanks, the 68040 document shows the "bottom view" of the socket, and it's messing with my head a bit. I asked after I realized that my had made my sockets upside down. :/ There's nothing like having something physically in front of you for a reality check.
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jroark



Joined: 17 Feb 2012
Posts: 75
Location: San Francisco, CA

PostPosted: Fri Dec 12, 2014 7:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've read on some of the Amiga forums that many, if not most, of the 68060s available for sale online are fakes. One way to get a legit 68060 is to buy an old MVME board with a 68060. They can sometimes be had for under $100, and are usually socketed.

MVME-177 68060 @ 50mhz
MVME-172 68060 @ 60mhz
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degs



Joined: 21 Sep 2006
Posts: 34
Location: Conway, NH

PostPosted: Sat Dec 13, 2014 2:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

jroark wrote:

MVME-177 68060 @ 50mhz
MVME-172 68060 @ 60mhz


That's a good idea for a source.

I expect to get my boards out over Christmas for this project. I have all of the parts there, but I just need to confirm my footprints and get it out for fab. I've been slammed by a 14nm run that is like a horror movie, but that's what you get at the bleeding edge.
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jvernet



Joined: 02 Jan 2006
Posts: 77

PostPosted: Fri Dec 18, 2015 8:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Anybody know something about that:
Adapter Kit 68040/68060?

"Should work on NeXT"
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Last edited by jvernet on Mon Dec 21, 2015 3:22 am; edited 1 time in total
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pentium



Joined: 23 Jun 2006
Posts: 1142
Location: Kamloops, BC

PostPosted: Fri Dec 18, 2015 12:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

jroark wrote:
I've read on some of the Amiga forums that many, if not most, of the 68060s available for sale online are fakes. One way to get a legit 68060 is to buy an old MVME board with a 68060. They can sometimes be had for under $100, and are usually socketed.

MVME-177 68060 @ 50mhz
MVME-172 68060 @ 60mhz


I'd take anything someone on Amibay or similar said with a grain of salt. They've been known for not doing their homework before, plus the communities are generally awful.
When in doubt, buy off ebay and use Paypal's buyer protection to get your money back if they try to give you the slip.
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jvernet



Joined: 02 Jan 2006
Posts: 77

PostPosted: Mon Dec 21, 2015 3:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

My previous post do not work...

Quote:

Anybody know something about that:
Adapter Kit 68040/68060?

"Should work on NeXT"

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