Author Topic: Diagnose 128 (and Diagnose 64)  (Read 2163 times)

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Offline RobertB

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Diagnose 128 (and Diagnose 64)
« on: February 27, 2012, 06:38 PM »
     Check out the photos of the rare carts, Diagnose 128 and Diagnose 64, at

          http://retro-link.blogspot.com/2012/02/computer-repair-carts.html

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Offline Andrew Wiskow

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Re: Diagnose 128 (and Diagnose 64)
« Reply #1 on: February 28, 2012, 04:23 AM »
Very cool! I especially like the one labeled "Shure Copy" that's built into a block of wood.  ;D

Offline RobertB

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Re: Diagnose 128 (and Diagnose 64)
« Reply #2 on: February 28, 2012, 04:45 PM »
     Heh, yeah, that one was weird. 

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          Robert Bernardo
          Fresno Commodore User Group
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Offline hoss48458

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Re: Diagnose 128 (and Diagnose 64)
« Reply #3 on: February 29, 2012, 12:11 AM »
I wonder if the one marked "sure copy" isnt perhaps a homemade dongle?????
 

Offline airship

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Re: Diagnose 128 (and Diagnose 64)
« Reply #4 on: March 02, 2012, 08:03 AM »
I wonder if the one marked "sure copy" isnt perhaps a homemade dongle??
Not homemade at all - it's a standard beige plastic dongle. It just has a homemade label, since many of them were unmarked, and if you had several you couldn't tell them apart.
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Offline RobertB

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Re: Diagnose 128 (and Diagnose 64)
« Reply #5 on: March 04, 2012, 01:17 PM »
     C= repair technician Ray Carlsen is eager to examine them when I get to his place in early April.

          Truly,
          Robert Bernardo
          Fresno Commodore User Group
          http://videocam.net.au/fcug

Offline RobertB

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Re: Diagnose 128 (and Diagnose 64)
« Reply #6 on: March 16, 2012, 04:13 AM »
Not homemade at all - it's a standard beige plastic dongle. It just has a homemade label, since many of them were unmarked...
     Actually, it's more like a wood block with a homemade label.  Though I haven't tried it yet, I believe that it goes with the disk package, "Sure Copy", for MSD drives.  I found the package last night.

          Bringing those carts to the Saturday SCCAN meeting,
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Offline RobertB

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Re: Diagnose 128 (and Diagnose 64)
« Reply #7 on: March 17, 2012, 09:27 AM »
...I believe that it goes with the disk package, "Sure Copy", for MSD drives.
     After examining the label on the disk, it does say, "MSD Shure Copy".  So, the dongle must go to the disk.

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Offline RobertB

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Re: Diagnose 128 (and Diagnose 64)
« Reply #8 on: March 18, 2012, 05:17 PM »
Check out the photos of the rare carts... at

          http://retro-link.blogspot.com/2012/02/computer-repair-carts.html
     It was a hacking investigative festival at today's SCCAN meeting as we delved into the various diagnostic carts for the Commodore.   The C128 Diagnostic cart (sixth photo from the top) seems to go with the C= embossed bits in the seventh photo and especially with octopus cable in the last photo.  That octopus cable that runs from the user port to the other C64/128 ports is used in conjunction with the C64 Diagnostic cart (not pictured) or C128 Diagnostic cart (which go into the expansion port).  The octopus cable terminates at the user port in the form of a cart.
     After much difficulty (drilling out the stuck center screw of the cart and yanking apart the plastic cart halves), the cart's interior board was revealed, complete with C= embossed logo, 2 chips, 6 resistors, and 1 capacitor.  With the C64 Diagnostic/C128 Diagnostic cart inserted and octopus cable attached to the various ports, the condition of the computer was diagnosed on-screen correctly.
     I believe these carts, cables, and bits were sent directly from CBM to authorized CBM repair shops to use.

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« Last Edit: March 18, 2012, 05:24 PM by RobertB »

Offline RobertB

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SuperCPU 128 broken (Was: Diagnose 128 (and Diagnose 64))
« Reply #9 on: March 19, 2012, 04:14 PM »
C= repair technician Ray Carlsen is eager to examine them when I get to his place in early April.
     Ack!  Not only will Ray get the carts to examine and MSD drives and flat 128s to check out but I'm also bringing him a SuperCPU 128!  Nothing major, though... nothing with having to do with any major component on the split-level boards.  At yesterday's SCCAN meeting the SuperCPU's UNIT ENABLE/DISABLE switch froze, and then when we did get it moving again, it just flopped around, not engaging anything.  Unfortunately, it broke in DISABLE mode.  :(  So, Ray will have to replace it with another SPST switch.  Hopefully, with a more reliable one...

          If that one broke, should I replace the
          JiffyDOS and SPEED switches, too?
          Robert Bernardo
          Fresno Commodore User Group
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« Last Edit: March 19, 2012, 04:19 PM by RobertB »

Offline RobertB

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Re: SuperCPU 128 broken (Was: Diagnose 128 (and Diagnose 64))
« Reply #10 on: April 07, 2012, 02:30 AM »
Not only will Ray get the carts to examine and MSD drives and flat 128s to check out but I'm also bringing him a SuperCPU 128!  Nothing major, though... nothing with having to do with any major component on the split-level boards.  At yesterday's SCCAN meeting the SuperCPU's UNIT ENABLE/DISABLE switch froze, and then when we did get it moving again, it just flopped around, not engaging anything.
     Well, I forgot to bring the MSD drives and flat 128s for Ray to repair, but I did bring him a C64C, 1571, NEC Multiscan monitor (for the Amiga), and the SuperCPU 128 to repair.  After I told him what the symptoms were on the two MSD SD-2 drives (blinking lights), he agreed that the old capacitors were leaking over the boards like a cancer.  He opened up the SCPU 128 and noticed that the broken switch was a "side-mounted" switch, i.e., its soldering points were on the side instead of being on the bottom.  We then examined the Diagnose 128 and Diagnose 64 carts in addition to the other various carts and bits.

          Gotta bring him those MSDs and C128s in June,
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Offline RobertB

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Re: SuperCPU 128 broken (Was: Diagnose 128 (and Diagnose 64))
« Reply #11 on: April 15, 2012, 03:57 PM »
...I forgot to bring the MSD drives and flat 128s for Ray to repair, but I did bring him a C64C, 1571, NEC Multiscan monitor (for the Amiga), and the SuperCPU 128 to repair.

(snip)

He opened up the SCPU 128 and noticed that the broken switch was a "side-mounted" switch, i.e., its soldering points were on the side instead of being on the bottom.
     The SCPU 128 is fixed!  Ray couldn't understand why it wouldn't go into 128 mode on his equipment, and I had to explain that he would need the Super MMU adapter for that.  :)

          I can hardly wait to get it back,
          Robert Bernardo
          Fresno Commodore User Group
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« Last Edit: April 15, 2012, 03:58 PM by RobertB »

Offline RobertB

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Re: SuperCPU 128 broken (Was: Diagnose 128 (and Diagnose 64))
« Reply #12 on: April 17, 2012, 04:47 PM »
...I did bring him a C64C, 1571, NEC Multiscan monitor (for the Amiga), and the SuperCPU 128 to repair.
     The C64C is repaired; Ray had his doubts about being able to fix the short board because of extensive damage to it, but he got the job done.  The 1571 is repaired, too; it had a bad DOS chip, and he replaced it.  However, the NEC Multiscan was too costly to repair; it will be recycled.
     Swerving back onto topic, Ray gave his opinion of the Diagnose 128 and Diagnose 64 carts (but not of the Diagnose 1541 cart) --

"...it appears they don't do much more than the cart and harness I'm using now. According to the DIAGNOSE 64 booklet, a certain amount of the computer firmware must be working (CPU, RAM, VIC and PLA) for that diagnostic system to work... which defeats the purpose for me.  I'm better off making the diagnosis myself (usually with a 'scope') and then using my cart & harness to "cook" the board afterward to make sure no intermittent problems or marginal components are missed."

           Truly,
           Robert Bernardo
           Fresno Commodore User Group
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« Last Edit: April 17, 2012, 05:03 PM by RobertB »

Offline wte

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Re: SuperCPU 128 broken (Was: Diagnose 128 (and Diagnose 64))
« Reply #13 on: April 18, 2012, 07:54 AM »
He opened up the SCPU 128 and noticed that the broken switch was a "side-mounted" switch, i.e., its soldering points were on the side instead of being on the bottom. ...
These swithes are weak. You should never hit them on their top (or let the SuperCPU hit the bottom headfirst). My damaged swith had been repaired by Dirk ;) Unfortunately, another swith is stiff now and I think it is just a matter of time ...

Offline RobertB

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Re: SuperCPU 128 broken (Was: Diagnose 128 (and Diagnose 64))
« Reply #14 on: April 18, 2012, 01:47 PM »
You should never hit them on their top...
     Heh, that's what Ray Carlsen said when I showed him the broken SCPU.  However, I assured him that I've always transported it in lots of bubble wrap (unlike when I first got it from CMD... no bubble wrap but just encased in a plastic bag in a shipping box).

          I guess the 1995 hardware was showing its age,
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          Fresno Commodore User Group
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P.S. I carry around my SD2IEC with daughterboard and external wall wart and uIEC/SD (early version) in a little, plastic case lined with pluck foam, which I got cheaply from HSC Electronics.  I should find another little case for the SCPU (or even one for the IDE64 v4.1).
« Last Edit: April 18, 2012, 01:50 PM by RobertB »

Offline RobertB

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Re: SuperCPU 128 broken (Was: Diagnose 128 (and Diagnose 64))
« Reply #15 on: June 23, 2012, 04:55 PM »
     Hurrah!  Yesterday I picked up the repaired SuperCPU 128 from Ray Carlsen.  He also handed back the various diagnostic equipment, like Diagnose 64 and Diagnose 128) for me to show at the July 28-29 CommVEx.  Unfortunately, Diagnose 128 is broken.    It seems that its ROM is bad, and Ray is still awaiting for code in order to burn a new ROM for it.

          With my SCPU 128 and one from the Clark County Commodore
          Computer Club (of Las Vegas), we'll have 2 for CommVEx,
          Robert Bernardo
          Fresno Commodore User Group
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