I just bought a NeXT Nitro stay tuned.

Started by Rob Blessin Black Hole, April 15, 2021, 09:51:10 PM

Previous topic - Next topic

Rob Blessin Black Hole

Hello NeXT Community: I just bought a NeXT Nitro Board from one of the NeXT engineers, I'm very stoked stay tuned as a lot of really amazing NeXT stuff is coming down the pike . Always wanted to see one let alone own one. I'm also willing to see if we can potentially use it as a template to create a modern working replicas or better.

Best regards Rob Blessin
Rob Blessin President computerpowwow ebay  [email protected] http://www.blackholeinc.com
303-741-9998 Serving the NeXT Community  since 2/9/93

spitfire

Hi Rob,

 I'm surprised this topic hasn't been pounced on already. Great find!
Take lots of pictures of everything at every angle. I'd love to see some tests installed
 on a station.

The thought of reproducing these is interesting. Can you still find NOS 68040's easily?
If so, I imagine the rest of the parts and PCB production is possible (Well, after the parts shortage calms down).

Wish I had done more electronics during my CS degree.

Rob Blessin Black Hole

Hello NeXT Community: Yes I'm excited and should have figured out how to set up a live broadcast as it was one of the coolest talks, I've ever had in my life with Mike P. and his stories as a lead engineer at NeXT. I'm going to have loads of hard and software documentation coming that I'll be able to scan and add to our archives.  I never new there were  V75 and V76 versions of the roms :)  because they were never released.

He will be an excellent resource for help and information , so Steve Jobs stories when he was seeking more funding from Canon. He ordered a bunch of the hardware, software and manuals be dumpsterfied and be sure they walked by the Canon offices . A lot of the really rare stuff was lost that day but a lot rescued was rescued , 2 camps at NeXT ones that cared and others not happy campers .....


Yes I'll be taking photo's as soon as my situation her at home clears up with the cra cra roomy moving out. The Nitro is safe unfortunately she cut the in person chat session short  , well we moved outside. Yoda my cat managed to participate and I bribed him with treats, when jump on the kitchen table to take a good look at the nitro , OK outside you go lol.   Stay tuned as hurricane Lisa is back in the room signing out for now.
Rob Blessin President computerpowwow ebay  [email protected] http://www.blackholeinc.com
303-741-9998 Serving the NeXT Community  since 2/9/93

NeXTnewbe

Can the Nitro board work on a turbo cube?  :-\

Danyetman

Hey, Rob!  Very excited to hear about this!  I'm a circuit board repair tech, so if you need help, hit me up.

Quote from: spitfire on April 17, 2021, 11:56:47 AMCan you still find NOS 68040's easily?

Why not just use a 68080?  100% code compatible, and relatively easy to find.  Plus, I'm fairly certain there are FPGA cores of the 68080 available, so that might be a workable alternative.

https://www.nxp.com/docs/en/data-sheet/MCF5307BUM.pdf (modern 68080 known as ColdFire)

http://www.apollo-core.com/index.htm?page=downloads (FPGA core)

spitfire

I wasn't aware of the coldfire chip. But I haven't been paying attention much. Is it actually 100% compatible at a software level? Is it pin compatible?

As for the vampire FPGA they don't implement an MMU, and are extremely hostile to people who ask about it. Check the forums on this.

spitfire

Of course I knew the coldfire existed but had assumed it wasn't object code compatible for the needs of NeXT hw/sw. It isn't.

From wikipedia " not entirely object code compatible with the 68000. When compared to classic 68k hardware, the instruction set differs mainly in that it no longer has support for the binary-coded decimal (BCD) packed data format; it removes a number of other, less used instructions; and most instructions that are kept support fewer addressing modes. Also, floating point intermediates are 64 bits and not 80 bits as in the 68881 and 68882 coprocessors."

So unless someone can show that NeXTStep/OpenStep would work, I'm going to assume it won't.
At very least the FPU math will be different from the genuine 68040.

zombie


Danyetman

Quote from: spitfire on April 23, 2021, 06:15:30 PMOf course I knew the coldfire existed but had assumed it wasn't object code compatible for the needs of NeXT hw/sw. It isn't.

From wikipedia " not entirely object code compatible with the 68000. When compared to classic 68k hardware, the instruction set differs mainly in that it no longer has support for the binary-coded decimal (BCD) packed data format; it removes a number of other, less used instructions; and most instructions that are kept support fewer addressing modes. Also, floating point intermediates are 64 bits and not 80 bits as in the 68881 and 68882 coprocessors."

So unless someone can show that NeXTStep/OpenStep would work, I'm going to assume it won't.
At very least the FPU math will be different from the genuine 68040.


*sagely*

Through Verilog, all things are possible.

Seriously though, this might be even better - http://www.inertial.biz/index.php?title=VC68040

spitfire

If you look one level up on the wikipedia page for the VC68040 it's described as "VC68040 Hypothetical 040 softcore based on UAE emulation code.".

I completely agree that long term there *will* be an FPGA 68040 implementation (with MMU!). But no one is working on it today.

People are working on Previous though and that is making great strides.

chriskapeller

Any more info about the Nitro Board?
Best regards
chriskapeller