Sunday, July 26, 2020

2.4G on Controllers for your Vintage Consoles 2020 Edition

In 2019, 8BitDo released a unique product, the M30 2.4G.  This product was notable in that it was shaped like a Sega Genesis 6-button controller, used a wireless non-Bluetooth 2.4GHz protocol and came with a 9-pin dongle that worked on original consoles and cost only $25 to buy.  While not the first wireless controller for the Sega Genesis, it was the first from a noted controller manufacturer.  Now 8BitDo has released new controllers with the same price tag and functionality, the N30 2.4G and the SN30 2.4G.  I bought a pair the day before the launched and have had some time to play with them.  I'd like to share my thoughts on them in this blog entry.  (All photos used in this review hereafter courtesy of Amazon and 8BitDo.)

Sunday, July 5, 2020

Batty over Bits - The Complexity of the Intellivision's Memory Layout

The Atari 2600 had a rather conventional design by later home computer standards.  It's CPU, the 6507, had an 8-bit data bus and a 13-bit addressing bus.  Whatever it did, it did in multiples of 8-bits, which has become the accepted standard for computer design.  But its' main competitor, the Mattel Intellivision, has a memory architecture remarkably more complex than its older rival as well as many successive home consoles.  Even most later 16-bit systems do everything in 8-bit, 16-bit, 24-bit etc.  It is important for anyone wanting to get into Intellivision to understand why it is different.  In this short blog post, I will try to explain those differences.