Amstrad CPC 6128 - HxC mod

... or Batman forever ... forever

.

Short story

Recently, I decided that I need to buy a larger Hard Drive ...


/Short story

CPC 6128

I always wanted to put my hands on Amstrad CPC 6128.
It was kinda exotic in my country back in a day.
Today, we have bidding portals and INTERNETZ so getting one is obviously not a problem.
I've found a cool looking unit on eBay ... and before I decided that I'll buy it ... left mouse button clicked somehow. I have NO IDEA how that could happen! Who could have clicked it ?!!

A couple of days later ... I was like ... YAY! I have it! :D Below some pics of it





... and pics of an inside






The Plan

The plan was to clean this unit as usual and start playing with it but since I didn't have any 3-inch floppy disks to load a software from I had to change that plan a bit.
I had a spare HxC on the shelf - Cheers Lotharek :D
HxC is a great device that emulates floppy drives - MORE INFO

The Plan evolved quickly:

  • Clean a unit, whiten all keycaps etc.
  • Swap original floppy drive with HxC
  • Burn DualROM and install switch for it
  • Design and 3D print a front panel
  • Run Batman Forever DEMO :D

Cleaning

This Amstrads case was in a very good condition so it only required good washing.
However, keycaps needed a solid de-yellowing treatment.



Unstocking a stock HxC

Stock HxC straight from Lotharek ;)
Btw. It will soon be available via https://www.retro-cloud.eu/

I wanted to put tact switches, LEDs, and LCD on a front panel so I had to modify it slightly which simply involved desoldering all of 'em.




I did a slight trimming of a case just enough to create a slot for an SD card.





A 34 pin cable adapter was required to connect HxC to original cable without cutting it. I've made it according to a drawing that Bryce put on a CPC wiki - Thx Bryce :)


I didn't have a 34 pin header so I've trimmed a larger one.




Next, I had to mod an original 34 pin floppy cable.







Aaaaaaand .... after a bit of work I had an adapter NOT ready.


... as usual, I screwed up and soldered wires in a wrong order :/ I had to spend an extra time and correct it.


Power connector needed a small mod too. Simply removing a 12V line was enough to get a HxC up and running.

DualROM

That was quite straight forward. After burning two OSs on a Winbond W27C512 flash chip, I only needed to desolder original chip and put a modified socket in its place.



Front panel

I've done a quick design of a panel in a CAD software and 3D printed it a while later.

I was quite happy with a result after trying it on with LCD and LEDs.

I've then applied black matt vinyl to cover LCD edges.

First dry-run and testing revealed that I will have to change tact(momentary) switch to regular switch If I am about to properly switch between OS ROMs.


Final assembly

Hot-glue FTW!



Works DONE :D




All that left was to play mandatory Batman Forever DEMO!

Cheers and see you next time ;)

Drygol

Chaos is your redemption .... better run .... better hide

I come from Internetz :>