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Need help configuring a pair of ISA Multi-Function Cards...

ButINeededThatName

Experienced Member
Joined
Nov 29, 2018
Messages
176
Location
Fort Wayne, IN
You know 'em, you love 'em, they add a clock, ports, memory and a thousand annoying, little jumpers and dip switches that aren't documented anywhere which makes configuring them an hours-long task, it's the multi-function expansion card.

In all seriousness, I have four of these I'm rationing out to my PC, XT and AT. Two (a Quadram QuadBoard and Eumlex Time Spectrum 284) managed to find info on and configure.

One, a Persyst Time Spectrum 384L, which I can't find any documentation on regarding it's two dip-switch banks, dozens of jumpers and how to configure them.

The last, I can't even identify aside from the fact it's made by STB and has a serial number of 1440. Luckily this just had one set of dip switches. Unluckily, I don't know what they do.

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If anyone could help me, either with documentation they could provide on either card or any knowledge on configuring them specifically, it would be greatly appreciated.
 

Ruud

Veteran Member
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Nov 30, 2009
Messages
969
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Heerlen, NL
The STB card has two COM ports, one LPT port and one game port. The last one most probably has a fixed address. Then I would guess that each port needs two DIP switch to select an address. Which leaves two for selecting where the memory should start. There should be enough programs that can find out what I/O is on board and at what address it starts. Run it first with the switches set as you found the card. Then change one switch and run the program again.
Remark: to avoid possible bus conflicts, remove the RAM. Once you are sure what switches are for the I/O, you can experiment with the ones for the RAM.
As a starter, this idea can be used for the other card as well.

Another idea: find out what IC is responsible for selecting the various I/O ICs. Most probably a PAL. Next you have to find out which of the switches is connected to this PAL. That gives you at least an idea of what group of switches takes care for the I/O. You can do it also the other way around: Check to what IC one or more switches have been connected and find out what this IC does.

In the worst case: a) make a schematic of the whole and b) dump the PAL and calculate the equations. The last will be difficult for registered PALs unfortunately

Good luck!
.
 

ButINeededThatName

Experienced Member
Joined
Nov 29, 2018
Messages
176
Location
Fort Wayne, IN
Alright, I was at least successful with the STB card in figuring out what the switches do...

SW1 / RAM Address
SW2 / RAM Address
SW3 / RAM Address
SW4 / RAM Address
SW5 / LPT Address (Up = 278H, Down = 378H)
SW6 / LPT Enable / Disable
SW7 / Serial 1 Enable / Disable
SW8 / Serial 2 Enable / Disable

​​​​​​As for the Persyst Time Spectrum, I've had very, very little luck.

All eight switches on the larger bank all seem to control the memory address setting. As for the smaller four-bank switch, I've discovered that Switch 2 sets the serial port address. That's it. I played with the jumpers and didn't find a noticable change when doing so. I also couldn't seem to get the parallel port to enable, unfortunately.
 
Last edited:

modem7

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May 29, 2006
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Melbourne, Australia
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