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Emulators?

category: offtopic [glöplog]
Nutman: Firstly, emulation could never replace the joy of running code on real hardware. in fact, my enthusiasm for productions made for hardware I do not own and have no chance of running on the "real thing" is very limited. I'm a person who has "flash" carts for all my console hardware (gba, sms, megadrive, etc) so no, no comparison there. real hardware is 90% of the fun.

as others have pointed out here, it is a simple matter of convenience/speed/productivity. you can produce prods a lot faster, efficiently and more compfortably with good emus, that's a fact. crosscompilation, editing data resources, testing code, tweaking, debugging, etc...it's all a lot faster in VICE on a 1280x1024 resolution 2ghz PC, compared to doing it entirely on a 1mhz, 320x200 rez c64. that's obvious. And although doing it all on the c64 is a "nice idea"...well, reality is different once you become adjusted to the PC comfort-zone :-)

whether a production runs on an emulator or not does not dictate its value to me. but, for the most part, if a prod DOES run when I try it on an emulator and if it looks like a POS, then odds are it'll be just as shitty on real hardware. so why waste time transferring it? a lot of prods do not run on emus, and in those cases I often give them their fare chance on the real thing.

and btw, no, i was not serious when i suggested that Falcon productions should halt until the Falcon gets a proper emulator. I was just highlighting the fact that it doesn't have one and that it is important that it gets one soon. well, imo anyway ;)

urgh, i havent slept for 32 hours so im off to bed :(
added on the 2008-01-08 04:55:38 by button button
Yes. Transfering demos to the Amiga is bitch.
Yes. If I was to code a demo for a new hardware, it would only make a sense to me if I first acquired the real thing to watch my demo as long as I am developing it, else it feels like I am coding for an interpreter of a virtual machine and not an existing hardware.
added on the 2008-01-08 06:43:07 by Optimus Optimus
Quote:
Lately I've been checking out the C64 scene, and I really like it. How could that be possible without an emulator?

I have a suggestion, but somehow I believe you know, what I'm going to say. ;)

No, seriously, of course you can't have any platform gathering dust in your room just to fire it up once in a blue moon, whenever a new prod emerges, but I just think that if we're talking about your primary platform here, and you ARE in possesion of the real hardware, I see absolutely no reason at all for NOT spending the extra few minutes transferring the new prod to the native hardware and watching it there - which was my point, really.
Quote:
Nutman: I don't think any amigas (at least in the 'real' amiga times) had a cdrom, except the cd32. Maybe the a4000, but that was hardly a common machine. The AGA machines had a single 2.5 inch IDE port though, so they could take an internal laptop size hard disk. With a 2.5" -> 3.5" adaptor you can put in a hard disk and cdrom, although you then have to power it somehow.

Yes, that was the good old days, wasn't it? ;)
Well, maybe it was just me and my friends, but eveybody I knew back then had a CD-ROM attached to their A1200 and A4000 - and, you say that the A4000 was not a common machine - emphasis on WAS, and I am talking about today, where, not putting any thought into ALL Amigas not being coomon anymore, I think the A4000s and A1200s are found as often as A500s and the likes. Besides, IF you run an A1200 or an A4000 on a daily basis, chances are that you will already have set up internet access, or at least put a network card in it, so transferring prods from the internet to the Amiga should be no real hassle.
Nutman: I reckon the "good old days" were before then, and after, not then :)

I remember a friend setting up a CDROM in his 486 back in those days, with a dedicated IDE card. We spent 3 days on that bitch, and it still didn't work. Getting one running on an amiga involved soldering a power supply to the motherboard. Maybe the hardware was going through a shit period :) Before that, you'd buy an accelerator card or more ram or whatever and plug it in, and it'd work.. that was the proper good old days. It's the same again now, in fact better, although I'm using a mac.

I'd say in the amiga's years of being top dog, pretty much everyone had an a500 or a1200. Things like CD came a bit later when it was in terminal decline, and perhaps only the really interested kept hold of it and upgraded it. So yeah, I guess later the amigas in 'serious use' would mostly have a hard disk and cd drive, and a4000s would have been more popular. I bet most people had left for PC or whatever else though. A pity really, cause my 040 amiga outperformed a PC for pretty much everything except games well into the pentium era.
added on the 2008-01-08 11:10:21 by psonice psonice
evil+gwem, yeah you're right that I should not say "100% correctly", but what I was trying to get across is that for almost 100% of demos you can get a good idea of what the demo will look like on real hardware, so if you're using the emulated demo as an acid test of whether you want to spend the time transferring a demo to disk then it's completely sufficient (most of the time). The slight difference in visible display and sound playback probably bothers coders a lot more than demo watchers also.
I guess I'm one of the sickos that likes listening to the drive heads seeking across a disk. (so you can hear something happening instead of wondering if your emulated machine barfed on the software you transferred from the real box)

Apple ][ and Amiga 500.


I know some of the Amiga emulators have attempted to simulate the drive sounds... but it's just not the same
there's a standalone Apple 2 Drive Sounds Emulator that's kinda neat [too bad it isn't incorporated into a emulator... aaaah, the head banging sounds of recalibration
added on the 2008-01-09 04:26:43 by CrzyClst CrzyClst
parapete :)

a Falcon emulator would be a very nice thing though..
added on the 2008-01-09 13:35:30 by gwEm gwEm
transferring files to amiga is pancakes once you've got a proper network card, and they're not that hard to find. if you can't find an old pcmcia card, you can get one new for like €50 from online amiga stores. setting up the network stack might seem hard but there are clear step-by-step guides floating around.

that said, it might still not be worth the effort if you only watch amiga demos occasionally, but as good a job winuae does it's still not good enough for many demos.

i'm personally in a strange situation where i have a c64 without a disk drive (started fizzing and smelly smoke came out) , so i can only watch one-file demos from my mmc64. the other demos i watch on pc, but it's not the same feeling.
added on the 2008-01-09 13:52:15 by linde linde
even though c64 emulation is very good compared to amiga i might add.
added on the 2008-01-09 13:53:09 by linde linde
When you develop demos for the Atari 2600 the only really sensible way to do it is to develop on emulator and then burn an EPROM for all major milestones. So far, everything Z26 has run correctly, the real machine has too. The same cannot be said about Stella... :)

But to comment on the thread as of whole, I myself also lack the space for most old computers, so emulators are an easy salvation for the whole problem. XBOX+MOD+Emulation+TV = happiness.
added on the 2008-01-09 13:55:27 by visy visy
linde, I also had the fizzing and smelly smoke problem with a drive. But those days are hopefully soon over, http://retrohackers.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=318&postdays=0&postorder=a sc&start=0 http://commodore-gg.hobby.nl/innovatie_1541kaart_eng.htm
added on the 2008-01-09 15:10:26 by hollowman hollowman
I confess that I also 'screen' demos first to see if they are worthy of the hassle of transfering the to the real thing. When it comes to C64 it's even worse, the emulators run many demos that I can't watch on the real hardware, since I have the VSP-lockup problem on that. :/

As for development, I can only agree with Amitari - crossdeving is the way to go. Just the editors of a modern PC makes it sooooo much easier. 40x25 text mode in 50Hz was fine back in the day, but now I really can't stand it for extended periods of time.

Emulators are also a godsend. When I started coding "Uncharted Territory" for the DTV, there was no emu, so I had to transfer to the real thing after every compile. It worked, but the development time was greatly increased. In the end I had some strange bugs that appeared after load and to test that I would have had to sit through the 5+ minute loading time for every test. Luckily VicePlus with DTV support was released just then. So instead of compile, transfer to disk (x minutes), load demo (5 minutes), it was compile, load in emu with warp mode enable, wait 5 seconds. Thanks to that, the demo actually got finished, which I doubt it would have otherwise.
added on the 2008-01-09 17:51:29 by Sdw Sdw
I'm pro-emulator for a variety of reasons.

1. In general, you can try out all kinds of alternative and classic formats from the convenience of a single desktop. Even Falcon, where they are '060 boosted can utilize a number of ported emulators of classic systems, so it isn't all one-way traffic.

2. The ability to cross-develop cannot be understated. A lot of people already go down that pragmatic route. Emulators on laptops enable more alfresco coding for the time-poor among us, which is practically everyone these days.

3. In the specific case of the Falcon '030, there weren't that many originals made in the first place, they tend to be hard to find and expensive to get hold of, and in a lot of cases, they aren't getting any younger and there is an increasing number of poorly or broken machines as a result.

4. Leading on from point 3, the emulated format gives more people access to rarer systems where they otherwise wouldn't have had the chance, leading to a bigger pool of interested sceners, and maybe, just maybe, one or two of these might be tempted to make something new.

At the same time, I do love having and keeping my original hardware, just don't get so much time to play with it currently.
added on the 2008-01-09 18:31:43 by CiH CiH
thanks for the tip, hollowman! sent a preorder pm as soon as i grasped the idea
added on the 2008-01-10 10:59:41 by linde linde
Quote:
meaned doesnt exist as a word.
Then let's invent it. :)

Besides that, it's nice to have proper emulators but it's never the same compared to the real machine.
That 1451 Ultimate does indeed sound excellent. I remember suggesting such a thing for the Atari ST before and being told by some well respected sceners that it would be impossible and a waste of time. Oh well...

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