Version: $VER: CD32-FAQ 3.5 (05-May-96)
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.-------------------------------------------------------. | Amiga CD32 Frequently Asked Questions - Part 1 of 2 | |-------------------------------------------------------| | Maintained by Stuart Tomlinson Version 3.5 | | Email: email@example.com 5th May 1996 | `-------------------------------------------------------' Due to Dan Cannon leaving his Demon Internet account, he has granted/suckered me with the pleasure of maintaining this FAQ. A lot of the work in it I owe to him. Anyone still wishing to reach Dan can find him at his new Uni address <CM-D.J.CANNON@tees.ac.uk>. NOTE: My e-mail address is due to change some time during this month. Any CD32-FAQ modifications should be posted to firstname.lastname@example.org for this month only. After this month my new address will be email@example.com. [---- Subjects Covered -----------------------------------------------------] Part 1... Introduction Tech Spec Controllers Software Audio CDs CD+Gs/Karaoke CDs Photo CDs Video CDs Magazines Internet Jargon Part 2... Expansion Emulating a CD32 Software Developers Pinouts Addresses [---- Introduction ---------------------------------------------------------] This is the FAQ for comp.sys.amiga.cd32 and rec.games.video.cd32. It's posted on the first weekend of each month. A lot of it is based upon the earlier FAQ by Edward D. Berger <firstname.lastname@example.org> - thanks go to him for doing all the hard work. Another equally sized hand of thanks must go to Dan Cannon <CM-D.J.CANNON@tees.ac.uk>, who was the maintainer before I. Who has done the rest of this FAQ so far. It's split into two parts. The first part holds the contents and the more general stuff. The second part holds the more technical stuff. This document is freely distributable, but it's compilation copyright. No changes should be made to it and it can't be sold for profit or used as part of a commercial document without the author's permission. So there. If you're reading this on a CD-ROM collection then it could be out of date. Some sections have wiring diagrams or details of how to connect non- CD32 specific peripherals to your CD32. These are taken from postings from Usenet or Email and the only guarantee is that it worked for the authors. There is a very good chance you could fry both your CD32 and the peripheral by accident. If you're not knowledgable in electronics, have somebody who is double check everything before turning the power on or buy a ready made adaptor instead. As well as news postings, you can get copies of this FAQ though... E-Mail To: email@example.com Subject: Doesn't matter send usenet/news.answers/amiga/CD32-FAQ/part1 send usenet/news.answers/amiga/CD32-FAQ/part2 quit FTP rtfm.mit.edu:/pub/usenet/news.answers/amiga/CD32-FAQ/part1 rtfm.mit.edu:/pub/usenet/news.answers/amiga/CD32-FAQ/part2 WWW http://www.lut.fi/~veijalai/faq/CD32-FAQ.html http://uptown.turnpike.net/B/blender/cd32-faq.html More detailed CD32 pinouts are available... E-Mail To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Doesn't matter open ftp.demon.co.uk get /pub/amiga/docs/cd32-pinouts.txt quit FTP ftp://ftp.demon.co.uk/pub/amiga/docs/ WWW file://ftp.demon.co.uk/pub/amiga/docs/cd32-pinouts.txt And to get a copy of the CD+G list... E-Mail To: email@example.com Subject: Doesn't matter open ftp.demon.co.uk get /pub/doc/misc/cdplusg.txt quit FTP ftp://ftp.demon.co.uk/pub/doc/misc/ WWW file://ftp.demon.co.uk/pub/doc/misc/cdplusg.txt For the Email methods of getting files, you can put 'help' in the body of the message (without the quotes) for more info about how to use that Email server (including how to split the message into parts for anyone who has an incoming Email limit). Thanks to these people who supplied answers (either by Email or, er, borrowed from the newsgroups). If you think I've left you out then put me right... Alan Buxey <firstname.lastname@example.org> Alan Redhouse <email@example.com> Alan Thomas <ALTHOMA%ESOC.BITNET@vm.gmd.de> Alf Edvin Torgersen <firstname.lastname@example.org> Allan Duncan <email@example.com> Anders Stenkvist <firstname.lastname@example.org> Anon <email@example.com> Bert Heise <bert@fuj.Physik.Uni-Dortmund.de> Chris Naylor <firstname.lastname@example.org> Claude Mueller <email@example.com> Clive Thomas <firstname.lastname@example.org> Dan Cannon <CM-D.J.CANNON@tees.ac.uk> David Avery <DavidAvery@avery.demon.co.uk> David Bump <email@example.com> David L. <David-L@cup.portal.com> David Law/Weird Science <firstname.lastname@example.org> David Mansell <email@example.com> Dominic Ramsey <firstname.lastname@example.org> Erik Austin <Erik.Austin@p27.f431.n711.z3.fidonet.org> Frank Hoen/Eureka <email@example.com> Frederic Botton <firstname.lastname@example.org> Garry Cardinal <cardinal@ARC.AB.CA> Gavin Moran <email@example.com> Geoff Adams <firstname.lastname@example.org> Gregor Rbel <GENIUS@PLATINUM.westfalen.de> Jan Willemsen <J_Willemsen@Toschibo.ruhr.de> Jason Compton <email@example.com> Jason Quigley <firstname.lastname@example.org> Jens Kufver <email@example.com> Joel Corn/Darksoft <firstname.lastname@example.org> John Bump <katana@holly.ColoState.EDU> John Layt <John.Layt@comp.vuw.ac.nz> John Lewis <JohnL@nesbbx.rain.COM> Johan Fabry <email@example.com> Jonas Petersson <firstname.lastname@example.org> Joop van de Wege <email@example.com> Jukka Kauppinen <Grendel@Freenet.hut.fi> Karl Frederick <firstname.lastname@example.org> Keith Blakemore-Noble <email@example.com> Kenwyn M. Smith <firstname.lastname@example.org> Kimmo Veijalainen <Kimmo.Veijalainen@lut.fi> Klaus Hegemann <Klaus_Hegemann@punk.fido.de> Maarten Ter Mors <email@example.com> Manjit Bedi <firstname.lastname@example.org> Martin Chantler <email@example.com> Matthew Hornyak <firstname.lastname@example.org> Michael Cox <email@example.com> Michael King <M.King@cc.uq.oz.au> Michael Litchfield <firstname.lastname@example.org> Mick Tinker/Index <email@example.com> Nick Zajerko-McKee <firstname.lastname@example.org> Olaf Barthel <email@example.com> Olivier Cremel <firstname.lastname@example.org> Patrick Van Beem <email@example.com> Paul van der Heu <firstname.lastname@example.org> Peter Kittel <email@example.com> Phil Kernick <firstname.lastname@example.org> Philip McDunnough <email@example.com> Ralf Willinghoefer <firstname.lastname@example.org> Ralf Willinghfer <GRISU@FANTASIE.RUHR.DE> Ralph Bonnell <email@example.com> Robert Wells <firstname.lastname@example.org> Rob Healey <email@example.com> Ron <firstname.lastname@example.org> Steve Cutting <Steve_Cutting@guru.apana.org.au> Stuart Prevost <email@example.com> Thomas Kessler <firstname.lastname@example.org> Tony Philipsson <email@example.com> William Thompson <William=Thompson%Pub=Facility%SSC@dbar7.aqmd.gov> [---- Key ------------------------------------------------------------------] Q: A question. A: An answer (there may be more than one answer per question). * A change since the last version. + An addition since the last version. - An answer is missing or incomplete - this will (hopefully) be sorted out by the next version. To skip through questions, set your text viewer to search for the string 'Q:'. To skip through subjects, search for '[-'. [---- Tech Spec ------------------------------------------------------------] Q: What are the technical details of the CD32? A: Internal... CPU Motorola 68EC020 clocked at 14.32Mhz. 32 bit data path. 24 bit address space (limited to additional 8M of 'fast' RAM due to CD32 system design). FPU None. MMU None. ROM 1M (8 megabits) of operating system. RAM 2M (16 megabits) of 'chip' RAM. 1K of 'flash' RAM. CD drive Multi-session, double speed, top loading, caddy-less design. Max transfer about 330K/s. Custom controller based (not IDE or SCSI). Operating system Kickstart/AmigaDOS version 40.6, release 3.1. Customisations for CD32 specifics. Custom chipset AGA custom chipset from 4 chips. Chips are called Akiko, Alice, Lisa, Paula. See the Jargon list for what they do. External... Aux port 1 x 6 pin mini-din type. Combined serial/keyboard connector. Controller ports 2 x 9 pin D type. Accepts CD32 joypads, Amiga mice, joysticks, Megadrive joypads, Master System joypads. Video outputs Composite, S-Video, RF (for televisions). French CD32s have a combined SCART & S-Video port in place of the S-Video port. Audio outputs 2 x RCA standard fixed output level. 1 x mini stereo headphone jack adjustable output level. Expansion port 1 x microchannel. For FMV cartridge or other system expansions. Add-ons... CD32 joypad Custom 11 button wire based, 9 pin D style. 1 supplied, additional joypads can be purchased separately. CD32x & SX-1 Adds enough connectors and ports to make it possible to use your CD32 as a computer. FMV cartridge Play CD-i Digital Video or Video CDs. Keyboard Most Amiga keyboards can be plugged into a CD32. Mouse All Amiga mice can be plugged into the CD32. Some games will be easier to control. Serial link Connected to the Aux port, allows you to use the CD32 as an external CD-ROM drive for other computers. [---- Controllers ----------------------------------------------------------] Q: What's the Competition Pro CD32 joypad like? A: It's completely compatible with the C= CD32 joypad. Some good things said about it are that it's shaped like a Megadrive joypad, the diagonals are easier to get to, it feels less delicate, it has turbo and auto fires, and it has a slow motion button. Some bad things said about it are that it's shaped like a Megadrive joypad and the diagonals are more difficult to get to. Obviously a bit subjective. Q: Is it possible to plug other types of controller into the controller port? A: Yes, but you'll lose access to most CD32 joypad buttons. CD32 Megadrive Master System Joystick Amiga mouse --------- --------------- --------------- --------------- ------------- Select B A Fire Left button Stop C B (Second fire) Right button Play (Third fire) Middle button Shuffle Loop Rewind Forward Q: Is it possible to connect a 6-button Megadrive or SNES joypad to the CD32? A: As far as I know, it can't be done unless you're good with a soldering iron, but if anyone has managed to do this then I'll stick the details in here. Q: Is it possible to use the CD32 joypad on normal Amigas? A: It works fine. Some newer Amiga games are even taking advantage of the extra buttons (shuffle, loop, etc...). Many older Amiga games that use the keyboard for weapon select will use the stop button instead (eg. Project-X, Apydia, Turrican 2). Q: Is it possible to both connect both a joypad and a mouse and use them together? A: The joypad should be plugged into controller port 1 and the mouse should be plugged into controller port 2. Q: Is it possible to connect more than two controllers? A: There are rumours of being able to daisy-chain 8 or even 16 CD32 joypads together, but nothing's been seen. What will work is if you connect some kind of interface that gives you a parallel port (eg. SX-1) and plug in an Amiga four-player adaptor in there. The good point is that you can play the Amiga version of Dynablaster, if you have a floppy drive. The bad points are that it's a bit expensive and CD32 joypads won't work when plugged into the four player adaptor (but they still work if you plug them into the side controller ports). [---- Software -------------------------------------------------------------] Q: What CDs will work with the CD32? A: CD32 ones (um), many CDTV ones, music CDs, Karaoke CDs, CD+Gs (like a music CD but it has pictures or lyrics displayed in time with the music), Photo CDs (if you load up a photo CD reader first), and Video CDs (if you have the FMV cartridge plugged in). Also it can read CDs meant for other computers such as the PC and the Mac, but it's up to you to tell it how to make sense of the files on the CD (maybe by using something like datatypes). You won't be able to play games for other computers though. Q: How can I try to convince a game to work in PAL or NTSC? A: Connect an Amiga mouse into controller port 2, hold down both mouse buttons, and press the reset button. You'll be given a boot menu where you'll be able to choose either PAL or NTSC. If you have a keyboard then you can press any key to switch the boot menu between PAL and NTSC so you can see what you're doing. This is useful for NTSC CD32 owners who want to run games that use the PAL area of the screen. Multisystem TVs connected to any video output on or 1084s connected to the S-Video output will work. TVs/monitors connected to the CD32 through the French CD32's or SX-1's or CD32x's or TP9's (see diagram at end of FAQ) RGB connector will also work fine. TVs/monitors connected to the CD32 through the composite or S-Video outputs won't work though. The problem is that the PAL colour signal is still sent at the NTSC frequency. Q: Are there any games with NTSC problems? A: Lock 'n' Load - most of the games (about 80%) are PAL only. Nick Faldo's Golf doesn't let you see the bottom of the screen, so you can't even take shots properly because the meters are covered up. Video Creator has the bottom of the screen missing. Also the animations become slowly out of sync with the music because of the difference in speed between NTSC/PAL machines. Almathera MAY work on an NTSC version of Video Creator - Email them at the address at the end of the FAQ to convince them. Q: Are there any games definitely without NTSC problems? A: Here's a list... Alien Breed Tower Assult Battle Chess Banshee Bubba 'n' Stix Bubble 'n' Squeak Chaos Engine (NTSC) Defender of the Crown 2 Fire and Ice Global Effect Guardian Gunship 2000 Insight Technology Labyrinth of Time Litil Divil Lotus Trilogy Microcosm Pinball F./Sleepwalker (NTSC) Super Stardust Ultimate Body Blows Winter Olympics Zool Q: What CD32 bundles are available? A: Original... Diggers Oscar Dangerous Streets... Dangerous Streets Diggers Oscar Wing Commander Spectacular Voyage... Chaos Engine Microcosm (Early versions also had the games from Dangerous Streets included.) Critical Zone... Cannon Fodder Diggers Liberation Microcosm Oscar Project-X Ultimate Body Blows Q: What multimedia software is available for the CD32? A: CD32 specific... Grolier's Encyclopedia II Guinness Book of Records II Insight: Technology (released for CD32, CDTV compatible) Video Creator Video Creator Update 1 (Amiga CD32 issue 2) Video Creator Extras (AUI December 1994 - on floppy) Various CDTV titles... Advanced Military Simulator American Heritage Dictionary Animals in Motion Connoisseur of Fine Arts New Basics Electronic Cookbook Stamps of France and Monaco Timetable of Business, Politics Timetable of Science, Innovation Various CDTV titles that require a mouse... Dr Wellman Fruits and Vegetables Garden Plants Guinness Disc of Records Illustrated Holy Bible Illustrated Works of Shakespeare Indoor Plants Musicolor Trees and Shrubs Women in Motion Various CDTV titles that require a keyboard and disk drive... Inter Office Q: What educational software is available for CD32? A: CD32 specific... MicroFrench CD32 (Contains video sequences, but you don't have to own a FMV cartridge to view them. More languages are planned.) Various CDTV titles... A Long Hard Day at the Ranch Cinderella Fun School 3 (under 5's) Fun School 3 (5 to 7) Fun School 3 (over 7's) Heather Hits a Home Run Moving Gives me a Stomach Ache Mud Puddle North Polar Expedition Scary Poems for Rotten Kids Tale of Benjamin Bunny Tale of Peter Rabbit Thomas' Snowsuit Various CDTV titles that require a mouse... A Bun for Barney Barney Bear Goes Camping Barney Bear Goes to School LTV English My Paint Paperbag Princess Various CDTV titles that require a keyboard... Asterix English for French 1 Asterix English for French 2 Asterix French for English 1 Asterix French for English 2 [---- Audio CDs ------------------------------------------------------------] Q: Is it possible to directly read the audio data from music CDs into memory? A: Nobody's managed to do this. The next best thing is to buy an SX-1, plug a sampler into the parallel port, start a CD playing with one of the CD players from aminet:/disk/cdrom, then sample directly to hard drive. [---- CD+Gs/Karaoke CDs ----------------------------------------------------] Q: Where do I get CD+Gs from? A: CD+G discs used to have a little sticker on the case, but the companies stopped this on the grounds that it confused the general public... The only places you'll probably find them now are in bargain bins or the odd mail order music store. You can download a list of CD+Gs released from the place mentioned at the start of the FAQ, so you at least know what you're looking for. If you find a CD+G not on the list you can also send an addition (have a look on the list for how to do this). Q: Can I use Karaoke CDs? A: Yep. They're the same thing. If you work or you know anybody working in a pub then you could get hold of the CDs for their Karaoke machine. Q: How do I play CD+Gs/Karaoke CDs? A: If you have a CD+G disc, you'll be able to tell immediately - the music player will disappear and the graphics will appear as soon as you press play. Use the up and down directions to change language and select to return to the music player. The rest of the controls work as normal. Once you're back at the player, a "CD+G" button will appear in the bottom left corner - hit select on that to return to the graphics. Q: How do CD+Gs/Karaoke CDs work? A: They fill up the spare 25M that is empty on a regular music CD with the graphics. They're limited to 16 colours low-resolution so that they stand a greater chance of working on a lot of different systems. [---- Photo CDs ------------------------------------------------------------] Q: Is it possible to display Photo CDs without expanding to a computer? A: Yep, use one of these CDs before the Photo CD... Network CD Weird Science Photolite Eureka A: Olaf Barthel wrote: In Winter 1994 I wrote a commercial program for this purpose. It can read both plain Photo CDs (such as the golden Photo CD Master discs) and interactive Photo CD portfolio discs. The program uses technology licensed from the Eastman Kodak Corporation. It is called "FolioworX Player" and retails for about DM 100,-. Blittersoft is the official distributor in the UK. A: This is a quick description made after reading Asimware's info sheet (it's probably better to read the full thing for yourself if you're interested before making up your mind): Asimware's Photo CD Manager costs US $39.95/CDN $47.95 and works on the CD32 and any Amiga with Kickstart 2 or above. It displays thumb nail images in groups of 10 on a sort of tape deck display. From this you can choose one or as many pictures as you want and view them as a slide show in any order. If you've got a CD32 or an AGA Amiga it displays them in 262144 colours, otherwise 4096. [---- Video CDs ------------------------------------------------------------] Q: What does the FMV cartridge do? A: If you plug in the FMV cartridge, you can play Video CDs in almost the same way as you play music CDs. It's really a 24 bit display card that can be genlocked with normal CD32 graphics, so you can superimpose your own images over it (this is a feature of Video Creator, apparently). Q: Where do I get Video CDs from? A: Any decent computer/music/video shop. Q: Can I use CD-i Digital Video CDs? A: Yep. Some don't quite follow the standard though, so if you get rubbish on certain ones you can upgrade your FMV cartridge's ROM to the latest version (40.30) which can cope with the non-standard CDs. The dealer that you bought the FMV cartridge from should be able to do this for you at a cost of about 5UKP. Q: What are the differences between Video CDs and CD-i Digital Video CDs? A: You won't get the bookmarks that you find on the CD-i. That's because the bookmarks are really a CD-i program. Instead you can search through the disc using the normal music player controls. [---- Magazines ------------------------------------------------------------] Q: Are there any Amiga/CD32 magazines with CD-ROMs? A: In the UK (check your usual sources of foreign Amiga mags elsewhere)... Amiga CD! (included with Amiga User International)... Monthly. Some sections of issue 3 are CDTV and A570 compatible. Issue 3 was the last issue. They're still waiting for the Commodore issue to sort itself out, so maybe it'll start up again now that it has. Amiga CD32 magazine... Not regular. Issues 1 and 2 are available through Amiga Format's back issues page. Issue 3 was planned to be out on December 1st. It hasn't been seen yet. Amiga Power CD32 version... Not regular. Issue 49 has a CD32 version with some demos, a load of PD games, and a load of reviews of the all time top 100 games. It sounds like there could be more CD32 versions some time soon(ish). Amiga Shooper... One off. Has a CD on the front with a load of graphics, fonts, sound samples, music, etc... You really need a CD32x or SX-1 to do anything useful with this. CD Gold... One off. A CD-ROM based magazine for CD32, CDTV, A570, and any CD Amiga. There was only one issue published, the pilot issue. CD32 Gamer. Monthly. There are two versions - the normal one and one which costs 5UKP more and has a full game attached to the front of the mag. Q: Are there any other magazines for the CD32? A: Amiga Pro/32 is now Amiga Pro. No more CD32 specific section. Most other Amiga mags have a small 1 or 2 page CD32 specific section each month. [---- Internet -------------------------------------------------------------] Q: What Usenet newsgroups are dedicated to CD32 discussion? A: Two... comp.sys.amiga.cd32 Using the CD32 as a slave drive. Add-ons for the CD32 (eg. FMV addition). Technical talk about the CD32. Serious issues for the CD32. rec.games.video.cd32 Games on the CD32. People's opinions about games. Hints and tips for games. Rumours and lists of new/future games. If your site doesn't carry the groups, ask your system admin. Q: What on-line mags are available? A: Three... Amiga Report aminet:/docs/mags/ar*.lha CD32 Bits aminet:/docs/mags/cd32bits*.lha CD32 View aminet:/docs/mags/cdvw*.lha Q: Are there any CD32 pages on WWW? A: Yep. It's run by Kimmo Veijalainen and you can Email him articles, reviews, hints and tips, digitised pictures of games, and so on to fill it up. Kimmo's Email address is Kimmo.Veijalainen@lut.fi. The home page is at http://www.lut.fi/~veijalai/cd32.html. A: There is also the Archos Overdrive home page. It contains brief descriptions of games, lists of games that work and don't, tips on getting stubborn games to work, and so on. It's run by Michael Cox, and his Email address is firstname.lastname@example.org. The home page is at http://access.digex.net/~mcox/zappohome.html. A: And there's Grendel's Games lists which holds more Archos Overdrive info. From Jukka Kauppinen. Jukka's Email address is Grendel@Freenet.hut.fi. A: Martin Chantler wrote: I have just seen your latest CD FAQ and thought I will let you know that I have a homepage with lots of CD and Zappo information on it. The area also covers a lot of normal CDs etc. URL: http://www.pncl.co.uk/~martinc/main.html. [---- Jargon ---------------------------------------------------------------] AFAIK As Far As I Know. The CD32 expansion connector pinout is only available to registered CD32 developers, AFAIK. AGA Advanced Graphics Architecture. The name given to the latest custom chipset for Amigas, which allows 8 bit (256) and HAM8 (262144) colour graphics from a palette of 16.7 million. The CD32 uses AGA chipset as do the Amiga 1200 and 4000 computers. Akiko This chip handles the data coming from the CD drive and includes the functions of the CIA chips in other Amigas. It's also more famous for chunky to planar conversion. Chunky and planar are two different methods of storing the screen in memory. Chunky is often used for 3D games. Planar is useful for scrolling games, and it's the method used by the CD32. This chip quickly converts from one t' other, helping developers to port code across from other platforms that use chunky. Alice The replacement for Agnus in older Amigas. Contains the Blitter and Copper, amongst other things. AmigaDOS The part of the CD32's operating system that's on CD-ROM (or floppy or hard drive). Developers must obtain a license to distribute even a small part of AmigaDOS on their CD-ROMs - it's copyrighted. Audio CD Your normal CD that holds music. Given a different name for computers because there's so many different types of CD about. The CD32 can play these. Blitter BLock Image TransfER. Special part of the graphics chip hardware which speeds up many operations, by moving blocks of chip RAM around with DMA, while performing logical operations on them. Lines and area fills are among the most popular uses for the Blitter. Boot Putting the CD-ROM in the drive and automatically launching a program without having to go through the operating system (eg. Workbench, MS-DOS, Finder, etc...) and all the messing around with keyboards and mice that it entails. CDs will only boot for the computer that they were written for, even though the files on the CD are readable on all CD-ROM machines (ISO-9660). If you intend to use the CD32 as a CD-ROM for other computers and you don't have other storage devices (such as floppy or hard drives) available, you must find CD-ROMs that boot up and load communications software (such as Parnet, Sernet, or Twin Express). Bootblock A small piece of copyrighted code that must be on a CD-ROM in order for it to boot. Developers must have a licence to use the bootblock. C-Cube This is supplied in the FMV cartridge. It decompresses the MPEG-1 picture from the Video CD and puts it on the screen. It's also found in the CD-i's FMV cartridge. CD+G Compact Disc + Graphics. A standard music CD with the addition of graphic pictures that can be viewed with an appropriate player. CDTV and CD32 both play CD+G discs. CD+G discs were never plentiful, and may not even be produced any more. CD-i Compact Disc - interactive. System for multimedia developed by Philips; made available to the public shortly after CDTV was. Not expandable to a popular computer platform such as CD32 is expandable to an Amiga. CD-i software titles cannot be played on a CD32 and vice-versa. There is a new cut-down version of the CD-i (smaller box, less connectors) that looks remarkably similar to the CD32... CD-i Digital Video CD A Video CD for the CD-i. The difference is that the they also have bookmarks of interesting parts of the film on them. These can also be played on the CD32 with FMV cartridge, but the bookmarks are missing. CISC Complex Instruction Set Chip. Contains lots of nice instructions, but it ain't so good in the speed department. CD+MIDI Similar to a standard music CD, but it also holds information for driving MIDI instruments. CD-ROM Compact Disc - Read Only Memory. A 5 inch polycarbonate disk with aluminium coating, laser etched with holes for storing computer data. ISO-9660 CD-ROMs can also hold music tracks that can be played with a normal music CD player as well. CDTV Commodore Dynamic Total Vision. The previous CD based machine by C=. It wasn't exactly a storming success, mainly due to poor marketing. Many CDTV discs will work on the CD32, but some need a mouse and others need a keyboard. Microcosm was originally a CDTV project. C= gave Psygnosis some financial backing to develop it, but the CDTV version never saw the light of day, except for some promotional demos. CDXL C='s attempt at getting motion video on the CDTV before low cost MPEG decoder chips became available. The CD32's version of CDXL can cope with more colours and cover more of the screen. CDXLs can be about two-thirds of the size of the screen (although they can be scaled up slightly to fill more, but the side effect is that they look blocky) and they can also hold mono or stereo sound. Chip RAM Random Access Memory available to both the CPU and Amiga custom chipset inside the CD32 (and all previous Amigas). The CD32 ships with the maximum amount of chip RAM that the AGA chipset can handle - 2M. Copper CO-ProcEssoR. All Amigas feature a special co-processor as part of their custom chipset, which allows some graphic chip functions such as colour palette manipulation to happen asynchronously to other tasks, freeing the CPU for other work. CPU Central Processor Unit. The brains for managing data and its manipulation inside a computer. Amigas, CDTV, and CD32 have all used the Motorola 68000 series of CPUs. Datatype Allows the OS to support any graphic, sound, text, or animation format, once the datatype information is copied to the proper folder on the Workbench disk or hard drive. Programs can ask the OS to load the file for them without knowing anything about the file format themselves. This can come in very useful if you want to read ISO-9660 CDs generated on other computers (once you've upgraded your CD32 to a computer, of course). DMA Direct Memory Access. Allows other chips apart from the CPU to access the RAM, at the same time as the CPU. This frees up the CPU for doing other work, whilst the Blitter is copying memory for example. Fast RAM Random Access Memory available to the Amiga's CPU, but not the custom chipset, thus faster for compute intensive tasks as no time sharing between the custom chipset and CPU is involved. Adding fast RAM should almost double the speed of the CD32 for non-graphics intensive work. The CD32 ships with no fast RAM, but third party expansion boxes may allow for up to 8M of fast RAM expansion if you do not have the FMV cartridge, or 4M if used with the FMV cartridge. Flash RAM RAM which can have data stored such that it survives being powered down. CD32 uses flash RAM to allow saving high-scores or game position information for the next time you play. Also known as NVRAM (Non Volatile). FMV Full Motion Video - just what it says. Full screen moving pictures. Often mis-used by journalists to mean any picture, including those that have 10 colours and are around the size of a postage-stamp, that's spooled from the CD-ROM. FMV Upgrade A plug in cartridge that gives the CD32 capability to play MPEG-1 encoded CDs such as CD-i Digital Video (Star Trek VI, Top Gun) or Video CDs. GIF Graphic Interchange Format. GIF compression is a standard for storing still pictures with 8 bit colour (256 colours on screen at once) and no loss in picture quality. HAM6 or HAM An earlier version of HAM8, found on A500s, A2000s, and A3000s, that remains for compatibility. This allows up to 4096 colours on screen at once. HAM8 Hold And Modify - 8 bit. An Amiga screen mode which can have up to 262144 colours on screen at once by changing some colour registers on each succeeding pixel on a given scanline. This is most useful for static pictures or predefined animation sequences, as it is difficult to constantly compute the best pixel colours in constantly changing action games. HAM8 is often used to display JPEG format pictures or predefined animations (CDXLs) with better than 8 bit colour (256 colours), often up to near 18 bit (262144 colours) quality. IFF Interchangable File Format. Developed by Electronic Arts and put into the public domain. Any IFF file can be read in by any program that understands the IFF format (if it's suitable - there's no point in a graphics package loading in an IFF sound file, for example). Took off on the Amiga in a big way, so much so that any program that doesn't understand IFF is guaranteed not to sell. Didn't do so well on the PC for some reason (perhaps it was too good an idea...). IMHO In my humble opinion. The CD32 is the best inexpensive multimedia delivery platform, IMHO. ISO-9660 The different computer manufacturers got their act together and agreed on a standard format for CD-ROMs, unlike the mess that we're still left with today for floppy disks. You can read any CD32, CDTV, Mac, or PC CD-ROM in any of the others. Although the files are readable, the file formats are still different for each computer (unless it's the CD32/CDTV), but if you have some conversion programs or datatypes you can display the graphics, play the sounds, or show the text from the CD-ROM. ISO-9660 CDs are also cunningly compatible with Audio CDs, so you can play tracks 2 onwards (track 1 is computer data) in a hi-fi, and computers can mix the music from the Audio CDs with the sound output. JPEG Joint Photographic Expert Group - JPEG compression is a standard for storing still pictures with 24 bit colour (16.7 million colours on- screen at once). Kickstart The part of the CD32's operating system that's in ROM. It contains all the code needed to access the CD-ROM and multitask, as well as other things that will never see the light of day unless you add a keyboard and some kind of storage (floppy or hard drive). Lisa Handles the screen display. There's a palette of 16.7 million colours - each colour made of one of 256 shades of red, green, and blue. From that any power of 2, up to 256, or 4096 (HAM6), or 262144 (HAM8) colours can be displayed. The resolution can be most combinations of 320, 640, or 1024 across and 256, 512, or 1024 down (although there are other modes available). MPEG Motion Picture Expert Group - they've decided the format of MPEG-1 and MPEG-2 compression. MPEG-1 is the accepted standard for video compression on CDs... It uses a variety of techniques to achieve staggering compression ratios while still maintaining good picture quality. Other parts of the MPEG standard include synchronized digital audio to make the format useful for movies on CD-ROM. MPEG-2 isn't used on CDs but it looks even better. NTSC The television standard used in America. NTSC screens cannot be as deep PAL screens. This can lead to problems when some software written in PAL countries is run on a CD32 using a NTSC screen. The software may use the bottom section of the screen that NTSC owners cannot see. This is entirely the fault of software companies, there are enough ROM routines in the CD32 to tell the program what TV standard it is running under and the program should make allowances. PAL The television standard used in most of Europe and Australia. Parnet/Sernet Freely distributable networking solutions for Amigas. Uses the parallel ports (Parnet) or serial ports (Sernet) to allow one to mount drives on multiple machines. In this way the CD32 can access the keyboard and hard drives of another Amiga, and the Amiga can access the CD32's CD drive. CDTV was often used as an external CD drive for Amiga computers via Parnet. A version of Parnet is now available for PC computers, allowing you to link from CD32 to PC. ParNFS An Amiga only update to Parnet. This new version is faster and has some bug fixes. Paula Gives you four channel stereo sound. Each channel can have 64 volume levels and can play either waveforms or sound samples at almost any pitch or octave from RAM. This chip is used to create sound effects, or play music from memory often when the CD-ROM is tied up for some reason (a CD-ROM cannot be used to load game code AND play CD music at the same time). Photo CD Transfering pictures taken from a camera onto CD. These can be read by the CD32 if you can find a CD-ROM with a photo CD reader on it, use it as a slave drive, or expand it to a computer and download the proper (freely distributable) software. The Communicator is bundled with a Photo CD reader called Photolite - this is available seperately too. Also Weird Science's Network CD has a Photo CD reader on it. RAD RecoverAble RAM Drive. An area of RAM that doesn't lose its data when reset. Any area of RAM can be used as RAD. Games can use it to save data in, so it's possible to play a game of Liberation, save your place in RAD, reset, play another game, then return to Liberation later. Some games don't like RAD being there though. RAM Random Access Memory. Specialized computer chips that can store information for as long as they powered on or the CD32 isn't reset. RAM chips and be read and written to by the CPU or the AGA chipset. RISC Reduced Instruction Set Chip. A CPU that contains only a limited set of instructions. The idea is that each instruction is so simple that it doesn't take long to execute and any of the more complicated ones that are missing can be built up out of the simple ones. ROM Read Only Memory. Specialized computer chips that store data and instructions for computer operation and cannot be erased or written over. Shovelware Taking an Amiga game, putting it on CD-ROM with no improvements whatsoever, and usually charging more than the original disk version. Slave drive Connecting the CD32 via serial or parallel link to another computer and using networking software such as Parnet, Sernet, or Twin Express so that the other computer can read the CD-ROM in the CD32. Spool Quickly taking data from the CD-ROM and shoving it on the screen or sending it to the audio output, or both. Eg. CDXLs or the Microcosm tunnels. 3DO Three Dimensional Objects (I think). Another CD-ROM based multimedia/ games system developed by Electronic Arts and former Amiga people. This also is not expandable to a regular computer system. Slightly more expensive for the both hardware and software than the CD32. It has more limited screen resolutions. Only just released in Europe. Twin Express A program to transfer files from one computer to another through a serial link. The front end works similar to FTP. There are versions of Twin Express for the PC and Amiga. Video CD If you have a FMV cartridge you can play these. There were 100 films available in August '94, much more now.