Bonami Retro Fair – next sunday – Franky on sale?

Next sunday, on the 4th of October, there is a retro fair being held in Apeldoorn, the Netherlands. It’s organised by game computer museum ‘Bonami’. Supersoniqs will be there, to show Franky and hopefully also sell a few! As has been reported earlier, we assembled a little more Franky cards and if we are done testing on time, we will sell the Sega Videocard for MSX!

Franky sticker

We can’t promise it yet, but if you are already planning to go there, be sure to visit our booth first, just in case! W’ll try to inform you before Sunday if testing of all the assembled cards has been completed. Targeted sale price of first generation Franky card is 65 euro. If we are going to sell it, only 20 will be available next Sunday..

Hope to see you in Apeldoorn!

Design considerations – part 2

In our earlier post we explained a little about all the choices that have to be made when developing new hardware for MSX. One of those choices was whether we  should support input connectors on Franky for the MSX video output signals. After looking at all the options, we decided not to support this functionality. Let me explain this decision. First of all, there are a lot of MSX computers which have different types of output signals. We can simply not support all (TV PAL/ TV NTSC/RGB/CVBS). Second, space on the Franky PCB itself is limited (take a look at the earlier posted photo of the Franky PCB).  Third, all that extra logic to reroute input signals not only costs money in terms of electronic parts and thus the final sale price, but also makes the design even more complex than it already is. And bigger and more complex designs are more vulnerable for errors, during assembling and operation.

Now, before everybody start throwing tomatoes; we did include one thing and that might also solve a lot of problems regarding your monitor setup, namely the inclusion of a PAL/NTSC encoder for CVBS (composite) output . If you have a TV or monitor with support for switchable RGB and CVBS input signals (Like most TV’s have, and for example the Philips CM 8833 MSX monitor) you can connect your MSX to RGB and Franky to the CVBS input signals (or vice versa) and there you go.

Another option is to buy an external switch box for video signals. There’s one lying here, it costs about 15 euros  and it eats multiple SCART and CVBS input/output signals.