New X68K Fan/Convert Here

Started by PaultheRoman, March 18, 2023, 12:47:06 PM

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Hello! I'm interested in getting more into this beastly computer, but first on the emulation side because to buy the actual hardware is quite expensive. I'm interested on all facets, but specifically what compels me the most is making hopefully some FPGA replica of it that one can use as their daily driver to program, create art, music, etcetera. Thing is, I haven't been able to find programs for it outside of games. Any pointers if I may ask? Also, I welcome any recommendations in games, emulators, books, documentation, repos for development, etcetera.


While I am not familiar with any art or music studio programs for the X68000 I think most people doing things of the sort do it on modern computers. Depending on the context there might be little to no benefit to actually create on the actual hardware itself. You will be severely hampered by the tools available.

There are plenty of modern music authoring software that can be used to compose music for the YM synth chip. As for art, well, this can be tricky depending on the purpose of the art. Are you looking to make sprite art for use in games or just pretty bitmaps to display via image viewing programs?

There are different concerns in each case, especially in case of sprites as you then have to have quite a bit of deep knowledge about the inner workings of X68000 graphics hardware to make anything that is actually useful in a potential homebrew game.

If you just want to make bitmaps things are easier, you just have to limit yourself to a set max number of viewable colours, then draw a bitmap using said palette.

As for then displaying the bitmaps or playing your tunes on the X68000, then things get a bit more complicated. There are tools to convert bitmap files into x68000 img files, and as for music, can't help you much there I am afraid. If you just want to play music files via a player, there is a specific format that is used for that on X68000 which escapes me, and you'll have to figure out how to compose music in those kinds of files. If you want to make music for use in games, well then it ones again gets technical as you'll have to decide which popular music system you want to use. There is Z-music for a example that is used by a few games. You would have to decipher ancient Japanese technical documentation on how to use it, and that, I am afraid, is not for the faint of heart.


In this thread there're some links of graphic conversion tools.

The MiSTer X68K core is far from perfect; but does a fairly good job right now:

Used to help developing for the machine and for a standard level programming, it probably would be enough.