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Vintage Computers Any vintage computer systems, calculators, video games etc., but with an emphasis on 1980s and earlier equipment.

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Old 3rd Nov 2020, 11:22 pm   #1
Phil__G
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Default Need a new programmer, thinking TL866 ?

Hi all, my Wireless-World SC84 programmer is getting on a bit, it doesnt live well with modern PCs and I'm tempted to update, ready for more lockdown projects. I've been managing with a homebrew programmer but its a bit naff.

The TL866 seems popular but I have buckets of old 25v 2716, 2732 etc and from what I can gather the TL866 spec says 21v max
I've seen vpp pins bent away and separately powered but its a bit messy.

On the other hand I have half a plan that rather than do any updates to 2716 & 2764 projects, to replace them with 28C16 and 28C64 eeproms, which I believe the TL866 can do. Do I buy a TL866? I'm a big believer in 'proper tools for the job'. Any suggestions welcomed
Ta !
Phil
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Old 3rd Nov 2020, 11:31 pm   #2
MrBungle
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Default Re: Need a new programmer, thinking TL866 ?

Just had a similar problem myself working on that quid board . Lots of 25v EPROMs but no parallel port (doh!) for my ancient programmer and no 21v ones. Decided to shift the 25v ones and the parallel programmer and use 28c64’s as well (RS sell new ones). TL866 I bought off amazon works nicely!
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Old 4th Nov 2020, 12:00 am   #3
SiriusHardware
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Default Re: Need a new programmer, thinking TL866 ?

Several people here have the TL866, one variant or another. I'm sure they will be along to talk about it any moment now.

If I had money burning a hole in my pocket I would buy the most high end programmer currently sold, it's available under several brand / model names including

Dataman 48pro2
Elnec Beeprog2

and at least two more which I can't remember, all actually the same programmer as far as I know.

Of particular interest to us here is that programmer's support for Bipolar PROMs including the elusive Tesla MH74571 and other Tesla branded PROMs which virtually nothing else on the market supports, but I could do with a modern-PC compatible programmer for EPROMs and Microcontrollers as well. It also has the feature, common on high end device programmers, of being able to functionally test a wide range of TTL, CMOS and RAM devices.

At the moment I maintain a couple of DOS PCs in running order so that I can continue to use my current high end programmer and I can't really justify replacing it because it works perfectly. It's still repaying the £800+ it cost 25 years ago.
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Old 4th Nov 2020, 12:17 am   #4
Timbucus
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Default Re: Need a new programmer, thinking TL866 ?

I have a TL866IIplus that will actually only do upto 18V - but, as I do not have a lot of EPROMS other than that voltage I am OK. The really unusual ones I will just have to build custom programmers for I assume like the MM2708Q for the Triton and the MM5204s for the SCRUMPI. I have a custom board from Phil for the latter to build up.

That said however it has a huge range of devices including GAL, PIC chips etc it can do and works under Linux which was important for me. It can also do the logic testing of many chips and quite a lot of RAM - it says the 6116 I now have for my MK14 is OK so I have a wiring error somewhere.
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Old 4th Nov 2020, 1:34 am   #5
Buzby123
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Default Re: Need a new programmer, thinking TL866 ?

I've not programmed an EPROM for years, probably the last was a 2716 on a homebrew programmer for an Apple ][e. ( But I was mostly proud of the one-chip programmer I built for the ZX81 !. )

So if I was in the market for a programmer today I'd be asking for suggestions as well, unless what I've got is any use.

About ten years ago, during an office clearout, I aquired a few bits that were to be binned. One was a was a Promac 1 programmer.

I've not needed to programme an EPROM since then, so I've never used the Promac. But, prompted by the reactivation of my interest in Old Skool computing, I downloaded the Promac manual. I'm sure all the info is in there, but it's a pain to find it.

Does anyone have some software that can drive this device ?

Cheers,

Buzby
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Old 4th Nov 2020, 3:18 am   #6
Mark1960
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Default Re: Need a new programmer, thinking TL866 ?

I got a PRG-055 GQ-4X last year as it is supposed to support 2732 as I have a couple of dozen NOS. I havenít really tried it yet as everything Iíve built so far has been RAM only with battery back up.
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Old 4th Nov 2020, 11:25 am   #7
Phil__G
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Default Re: Need a new programmer, thinking TL866 ?

Thanks everyone, I read the TL866 spec for the umpteenth time and finally bought one.
I can always make a 25v adapter if need be, maybe even auto switched by the 18v.
I got my 28C64s from RS some time ago (only £3!) but has anyone found a source of good 28C16s? or is it just the 'used' and sometimes faulty Chinese ones? (I've not actually tried mine yet pending making/buying a programmer)
Cheers
Phil
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Old 4th Nov 2020, 11:29 am   #8
SiriusHardware
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Default Re: Need a new programmer, thinking TL866 ?

I have a small number of new-old-stock, definitely genuine 28C16s here - drop me a PM if you want a couple.
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Old 4th Nov 2020, 5:16 pm   #9
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Default Re: Need a new programmer, thinking TL866 ?

I have a TL866 and its great, although I don't have any 25v parts to my knowledge. I guess a simple adapter is possible switched by the 18v. For the money I can't see any better programmer with the same part coverage. There is linux software available, and the windows software runs under Wine on Linux with a replacement dll so for people like me without a functioning windows machine its great. The Windows software also allows for the testing of a (limited) range of chips which I haven't tried but is a nice option to have.
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Old 4th Nov 2020, 8:24 pm   #10
wireless_john
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Default Re: Need a new programmer, thinking TL866 ?

I have a TL866ii+ and use it to program AT28C256 which it does really well. I wanted it to do PIC16F84 as well but although it's supposed to, it doesn't. I emailed the manufacturer several times, even translating it into Chinese a couple of times. They never replied.

A couple of times, I've had to reinstall the software on my PC because it wouldn't start.

On the whole though, I'm happy with it. I found another way to do the PICs in the end after discussing it on the forum.

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Old 4th Nov 2020, 9:38 pm   #11
Timbucus
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Default Re: Need a new programmer, thinking TL866 ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by wireless_john View Post
I have a TL866ii+ and use it to program AT28C256 which it does really well. I wanted it to do PIC16F84 as well but although it's supposed to, it doesn't. I emailed the manufacturer several times, even translating it into Chinese a couple of times. They never replied.

A couple of times, I've had to reinstall the software on my PC because it wouldn't start.

On the whole though, I'm happy with it. I found another way to do the PICs in the end after discussing it on the forum.

John
Oh that is interesting maybe they got the pinout of the 18 pin device wrong - I have only tried the 40pin 16F877 and A versions so far. I have an 18 I want to program for something which is also 40 pin - I have an 18pin one somewhere maybe I will give it a go.
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Old 4th Nov 2020, 9:51 pm   #12
Phil__G
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Default Re: Need a new programmer, thinking TL866 ?

For pics, ye olde faithful Pickit 2 & 3 are hard to beat
The cheap copies from the forbidden place seem equally good too, I have a couple of each,
you cant tell them from the genuine ones, they work exactly the same

Last edited by Phil__G; 4th Nov 2020 at 10:05 pm.
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Old 4th Nov 2020, 10:10 pm   #13
Timbucus
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Default Re: Need a new programmer, thinking TL866 ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Phil__G View Post
For pics, ye olde faithful Pickit 2 & 3 are hard to beat
The cheap copies from the forbidden place seem equally good too, I have a couple of each,
you cant tell them from the genuine ones, they work exactly the same
Yes mine is a look alike and seems to work and be recognized by the IDE - I still prefer the TL for programming as it is quick and easy and seems sturdier than the precarious 40pin ZIF socket hanging on the end of the Pickit
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Old 5th Nov 2020, 6:15 pm   #14
ParcGwyn
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Default Re: Need a new programmer, thinking TL866 ?

I have just purchased a TL866+ and have found this video on youtube showing 21v EPROMs being programmed: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F9ADB7ImSwc
I haven't tried this yet.

Dave
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Old 5th Nov 2020, 6:31 pm   #15
Phil__G
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Default Re: Need a new programmer, thinking TL866 ?

Hmmm.
All three of my 'new' Atmel 28C16 eeproms are showing 'pin detect error' on every pin.
Tried turning pin detect off but no joy
The new RS 28C64's work perfectly. I suspect the '28C16' chips aren't

Works great on old eproms, though some are corrupted after 40+ years!
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Old 5th Nov 2020, 7:02 pm   #16
SiriusHardware
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Default Re: Need a new programmer, thinking TL866 ?

Packet went in the post to you today Phil, and the 28C16 devices in there are definitely real.
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Old 5th Nov 2020, 8:41 pm   #17
Phil__G
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Default Re: Need a new programmer, thinking TL866 ?

Brilliant thanks very much SH
Had hours of fun reading the eproms from old, long forgotten projects ...
Found some useful stuff too, SCMP files, character gens, old monitor roms (including Demon and my own 6800 monitor)
a hex-byte display (acts like two TIL311s which were too expensive), tiny basics etc...
some quite complex projects, cant believe how much I've forgotten in 40 years!
I've loads of carefully-recovered eproms I'll never use if anyone wants some, 2716, 2732, 2764, 27256 just shout. No 128s though, I think only BBC Micro users bought 128s. Sideways roms & all that
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Old 6th Nov 2020, 1:07 pm   #18
Phil__G
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Default Re: Need a new programmer, thinking TL866 ?

Just heard that apparently every single employee at our local sorting office has tested positive for Covid and the office has been closed, who knows what happens next ! Our regular postie is quite an old fella, hope he's ok.
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Old 6th Nov 2020, 1:36 pm   #19
SiriusHardware
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Default Re: Need a new programmer, thinking TL866 ?

I guess this wasn't the best time to post something to you then.
Let's hope everyone will be OK.
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Old 6th Nov 2020, 6:03 pm   #20
Phil__G
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Default Re: Need a new programmer, thinking TL866 ?

Just arrived back from the vet (poorly dog) and the chips were here!
Many thanks G I owe you one
Phil
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