does ZX Spectrum platform needs to be subdivided?

category: general [glöplog]
Surely MSX2 and MSX2+ are so different that they need to be separated :)
added on the 2014-07-22 14:10:18 by Marq Marq
Marq, the problem is that once people begin discussing where the boundary is between "original" and "enhanced", all the hell breaks loose. Tried several times, nothing good comes out of it. Too many models, too many slight and not so slight variations. It is easy to distinguish 128K Spectrum from TS-Conf. But there is also ATM or Profi or Scorpion in the middle, as well as all sorts of even more esoteric stuff. In psychology they talk about spectra, e.g. autistic spectrum etc. We are dealing here with the spectrum of ZX Spectum clones, all sorts of things in between included.

They had it easy on MSX.
added on the 2014-07-22 14:17:55 by introspec introspec
Well, all those clones have at least _something_ in common with Spectrum, unlike the TS-Conf. It's a bit like implementing an Amiga on the FPGA and calling it a Speccy.
added on the 2014-07-22 14:21:08 by Marq Marq
while you cannot make decision, this people begun to learn:
added on the 2014-07-22 14:21:48 by g0blinish g0blinish
Here's hoping there would be English documentation on the features, updates and installation of the TS-Conf some day :P
added on the 2014-07-22 14:27:10 by Marq Marq
introspec but there's nothing to discuss, boundaries were set with the last produced ZX Spectrum:
CPU - Z80 3,5MHz
RAM - up to 128k
Storage - tapes or 3" floppies
Graphics: 256x192 pixels, 32x24 attributes, 15 colours
Audio: beeper or AY

Anything that doesn't work on original hardware or emulators emulating them - anything that needs faster CPU, more RAM, hard disk, or any other graphics or audio extension, goes to "ZX Spectrum enhanced" category or however you call it.

Is there any problem yet?
added on the 2014-07-22 14:41:35 by rutra80 rutra80
There is a matter of retro in the Spectrum. Clones appeared in 1991-1993 are no doubt retro.
Marq, all of these clones are pretty good at running classical ZX Spectrum software. Better than with some commercial computers (e.g. Sam Coupe is a lot less compatible). No-one made a proper use of this fact to the best of my knowledge, but I'm sure we are yet to see demos that will exploit the hardware similarities more fully.

Most ATM demos on Pouet use 16-colour EGA-like paletted videomode of ATM. Some people believe that these demos are still authentic in the sense that this was an actual mass-produced hardware from the early 1990s (perhaps, few thousands of these boards were made). But what is common between these demos and classical 48K and 128K models apart from Z80 running the show? not a question that is easy to answer.

If I was to propose a split, I would probably suggest the following categories: "16K/48K Spectrum (and clones)", "128K Spectrum (and clones)", "ZX Spectrum Enhanced (retro)" (to include Timex models and Russian monster clones like ATM, Profi and Scorpion) and "ZX Spectrum Exhanced (modern)" for things like TS-Config, v6z80p etc. But I am not particularly hopeful and I do not believe an agreement is possible.
added on the 2014-07-22 14:50:51 by introspec introspec
rutra80: For example, a Pentagon is roughly equal to a +3, except with different timings and a different disc drive. So it can't really be called "enhanced". Some minimal speed gain, as the screen memory is not contended.
added on the 2014-07-22 14:52:47 by Marq Marq
CPU - Z80 3,5MHz
RAM - up to 128k
Storage - tapes or 3" floppies
Graphics: 256x192 pixels, 32x24 attributes, 15 colours
Audio: beeper or AY

I agree, pentagon does fit:) ATM Turbo 2 does not fit at all: more ram, not 3.5 MHz, different screen. ATM IS a spectrum-compatible, but not fully a spectrum. This is an enhanced speccy, it must be in enhanced category with Profi, GMX, Pentagon 512 or even TS-conf. And it does NOT matter if it's a retro. Creating own category for each retro spec-compatible computer - definitely bad idea.
added on the 2014-07-22 14:58:26 by psb psb
I thought of pretty similar sets indeed. Three might suffice, too:
* 16k/48k/Plus
* 128k/Pentagon
* Spectrum enhanced
added on the 2014-07-22 15:01:05 by Marq Marq
No modern custom FPGA stuff in Spectrum please.
10 people voted for this subdivision, don't put the thread into flame again.
rutra80, the main problem is: you've just thrown the baby out with the water. There was huge amount of demomaking on ZX Spectrum clones, which were not perfect clones, but were just about as compatible on average as 128K models were compatible with each other (128K/+2 vs +2a/+2b/+3) or with 48K speccy (timing differences etc).

What is worse, this does not solve the classification problem at all, because the discussion does not really concern early clones like Pentagon 128K, but much later and much more advanced clones.
added on the 2014-07-22 15:02:17 by introspec introspec
Marq, does software made on Pentagon run on original ZX Spectrum? If it does, I'd put it to original "ZX Spectrum" category. I read that there were Pentagons with even 1MB of RAM, in case if software needs more than 128k I'd put it to "enhanced" category. It's all about software - whether it works on original ZX Spectrum or needs some enhancements.

Generally I'm against multiplying categories. I'd stick with one for original "ZX Spectrum" and one for the clones. I wouldn't even split 48k/128k. If I were in charge I'd even leave things as they are and just put all the demos requiring clones to the wild category...

All I mean is to cease polluting ZX Spectrum category with software that doesn't work on ZX Spectrum.
added on the 2014-07-22 15:08:02 by rutra80 rutra80
Pentagon128 foreve!!!
but without subdivision.
added on the 2014-07-22 15:11:15 by g0blinish g0blinish
Some Pentagon demos do, some don't :) It's not a clear-cut case.
added on the 2014-07-22 15:11:23 by Marq Marq
48K demos and 128K demos are VERY different.
As I said, it's all about software - if a demo works on stock ZX Spectrum put it to original "ZX Spectrum" category. If it doesn't put it to the enhanced one. It doesn't matter if it was coded on real ZX Spectrum, clone, PC, or a sheet of paper - the question is if it works on original hardware.
added on the 2014-07-22 15:14:32 by rutra80 rutra80
Just doesn't seem reasonable to split Pentagon 128 demos into separate categories, esp. it was the most important Speccy-like platform for years.
added on the 2014-07-22 15:22:33 by Marq Marq
Define "works". A lot of stuff works, but has never been ported to file format that you may be used to. A lot of stuff is trivial to adopt, but no-one ever tried. Your criterion may be useful and practical to you personally, but it is not very helpful to compare demos against each other (which is the main reason this discussion keeps coming back).
added on the 2014-07-22 15:22:34 by introspec introspec
1/6 part of the dry land used clones. That was our only Spectrum.
There is no discussion needed to talk about 16k/48k/128k(including pentagon 128+beta disk interface). It is a 3 cathegories with clear differences.

The discussion starts about:
1) ATM
2) ZX Evo TS Conf
3) All other enhanced

my first point of view was:
1,2,3 - is one cathegory "ZX Spectrum Enhanced"

alone coder's point of view:
1,2,3 - is three different cathegories

also there is can be other points:
1,3 - is the one cathegory, 2 - is something different


I have agreed with introspec that we will not find a common decision about that.

So any subdivision is impossible because of the flamewars between two groups of sceners. First group claims that TS Conf is a new FPGA-based platform that have nothing common with ZX Spectrum, but another group claims that TS Conf is just an extension, same like ATM extravideomodes, but just more enhanced.

Personally for me is no matter all that enhanced stuff, a just want to separate it from ZX 16/48/128. But not only me using the pouet. All other have a voice to say.
added on the 2014-07-22 15:31:21 by diver diver
introspec, if something is in a format unuseable for original ZX Spectrum, or wasn't adopted even if it could, then everyone with a common sense will clearly put it to the "ZX Spectrum enhanced" category?
added on the 2014-07-22 15:38:19 by rutra80 rutra80
ATM, ZX Evo TS Conf and other enhanced - is one cathegory "ZX Spectrum Enhanced"
added on the 2014-07-22 15:45:33 by VBI VBI
Alone: I have nothing against clones, if you had a clone and made a demo on it which works on original ZX Spectrum then fine, put it to original "ZX Spectrum" category. Or to the "ZX Spectrum enhanced" category if you feel like taking part in the drama and adding a point to one of the clones team - that's fine too.
I just think that it is important to keep original ZX Spectrum category clear of software that in fact doesn't work on ZX Spectrum.
If anyone feels like taking part in some clone wars, creating 99 categories then go on and have fun, but first please separate them from ZX Spectrum.
added on the 2014-07-22 15:49:14 by rutra80 rutra80