Dizzy Treasure Island Crashes After Tape Load

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frasbo
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Dizzy Treasure Island Crashes After Tape Load

Post by frasbo » Thu Oct 17, 2019 7:52 am

Hi,

Wondering if anyone can help - Last week I got a spectrum 128k +2A from ebay - Overall in good condition.

I took it apart and gave it a good clean and inspection (nothing that I could see was concerning), and I also gave the tape heads a good clean with IPA.

It loads most of the games I have tried but there are 2 games it has issues with:

Treasure Island Dizzy - It loads the game fine from tape but just as its about to play the audio (I believe it says Treasure Island Dizzy or something) - the spectrum crashes and I get a repeated humming sound instead. I bought another copy of the tape from ebay believing it was an issue with the tape however the other tape I bought does the same? I've also tried loading from the other side of the tape and it also does the same?

Renegade - Games loads fine and I can play - but when I get killed (very short time as game is so hard! lol) - it freezes. Again I bought another copy and it does the same thing.

Games that play fine: Batman Caped Crusador, Thundercats, ATV, Kickstart 2, Platoon, Ghouls Ghosts, Green Beret..

Other factors - I have a expansion port for a kempston interface plugged into the back, and I have a sega mega drive joypad in here. I have a couple of Atari Compatible Joysticks (both work fine with my Amiga 600) but they seem to auto fire a lot on the spectrum?

Also not sure if related but the reset switch is very intermittent - sometimes it works sometimes it doesn't lol

If anyone has any insight that would be appreciated :-)

Cheers,
Fraser
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Ast A. Moore
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Re: Dizzy Treasure Island Crashes After Tape Load

Post by Ast A. Moore » Thu Oct 17, 2019 9:38 am

There are plenty of games that are incompatible with various Spectrum models. Dizzy II does indeed crash on a +2A when loaded in 128 BASIC mode. The original Renegade 48K is also incompatible and will exhibit all sorts of issues on that machine.

Check out these bug fixes for popular Spectrum games (or see the link in my signature); I have made quite a few. If you have a tape adaptor or have modded the 3.5 mm port on the +2A to match that of the +3, you can easily load them into your computer.

The reset switch on the +2A is quite recessed and can take some coaxing to register. Just make sure you can push it deep enough (use the softer part of your finger).
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Every man should plant a tree, build a house, and write a ZX Spectrum game.

Author of A Yankee in Iraq, a 50 fps shoot-’em-up—the first game to utilize the floating bus on the +2A/+3,
and zasm Z80 Assembler syntax highlighter.

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1024MAK
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Re: Dizzy Treasure Island Crashes After Tape Load

Post by 1024MAK » Thu Oct 17, 2019 11:12 am

frasbo wrote:
Thu Oct 17, 2019 7:52 am
I have a expansion port for a kempston interface plugged into the back, and I have a sega mega drive joypad in here. I have a couple of Atari Compatible Joysticks (both work fine with my Amiga 600) but they seem to auto fire a lot on the spectrum?
I’m presuming that these joysticks don’t have auto-fire or it is switched off?

There are many variations of the official Kempston made joystick interfaces plus many, many Kempston compatible joystick interfaces. They all use the Atari 9 pin D connector standard pin-out for Up/Down/Left/Right/Fire. But not all provide a +5V for auto-fire joysticks that need it. And the polarity of the common terminal can be +5V instead of 0V/GND (depending on the version). No other functions are normally supported (although modern Kempston compatible joystick interfaces may support two more fire buttons). As far as I am aware, all are compatible with (Atari compatible) switched contact joysticks that don’t have any auto-fire circuitry.

The joystick interface has no knowledge of auto-fire. It just either sees the fire button pressed (or think it does if a joystick has auto-fire circuitry), or does not see the fire button pressed. This information is passed on to the CPU when the game code asks for it. How the game responds, very much depends on the game code.

The most likely problem is that there may be a poor connection (likely a dry solder joint on the 9 pin D connector) and when the joystick fire button is held down, the poor connection makes and breaks (possibly due to vibration), causing the game to think that the fire button is being repeatedly pressed and released.
frasbo wrote:
Thu Oct 17, 2019 7:52 am
Also not sure if related but the reset switch is very intermittent - sometimes it works sometimes it doesn't lol
The electrical circuitry for the reset system is very simple. Assuming you are pressing it in far enough, the most likely problem is dirty contacts in the switch. The easiest way to fix this, is to ask someone to renew the switch for you. But it may also be worthwhile trying to spray some solvent based electrical contact cleaner inside it (NOT anything that contains oil or lubricant). You also have to be careful that whatever you use is safe for use on plastics. Then operating the switch multiple times (at least ten times).

Mark
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Alessandro
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Re: Dizzy Treasure Island Crashes After Tape Load

Post by Alessandro » Thu Oct 17, 2019 12:10 pm

Hi, for more incompatibilities with the +2A (and cures thereof) you should check this list.
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frasbo
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Re: Dizzy Treasure Island Crashes After Tape Load

Post by frasbo » Thu Oct 17, 2019 3:36 pm

Ast. A. Moore - Thank you - I didn't realise that there are incompatibilities with the +2A for certain games. What is weird is that I had the +2A when I about 7/8 years old and seem to remember playing dizzy 2 on it loads - actually I wonder if this was at a friends house? (trying to jog my memory).

Anyway - thanks for info - much appreciated. I think I am going to buy the divMMc to load these patched games. I bought a 99p tape with 3.5mm audio jack but I didn't have much success with PlayZX on my phone - but I believe this is not outputing a high enough voltage to work...

1024Mak - I'm a taken back by your knowledge on this. The kempston interface I got is looking a bit grubby and I don't feel it sits nicely in the I/O port on the back of the spectrum so perhaps I should take this apart and give it a good clean - or buy a new one. The joysticks do have auto fire switches on them but they are turned off. When I turn them on they are actually work.

I'll try cleaning the reset switch - I have a can of WD40 electrical cleaner which I have been using successfully on carts for other systems.

Alessandro - Thank you for the link.

Thank you everyone - you are all very knowledgeable :-)
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Ast A. Moore
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Re: Dizzy Treasure Island Crashes After Tape Load

Post by Ast A. Moore » Thu Oct 17, 2019 5:18 pm

frasbo wrote:
Thu Oct 17, 2019 3:36 pm
What is weird is that I had the +2A when I about 7/8 years old and seem to remember playing dizzy 2 on it loads - actually I wonder if this was at a friends house? (trying to jog my memory).
It is possible to play it on a +2A. You could either load it in 48K BASIC—it’ll work as a 48K game, or select the +3 BASIC menu, type usr0 and press Enter. The computer will reset. Don’t panic; just type LOAD “” and load the game. The sampled speech at the beginning (“Welcome to Treasure Island Dizzy”) will sound distorted, but that’s about the only downside.

With your copy of Renegade, I’m afraid you’re out of luck, though.
frasbo wrote:
Thu Oct 17, 2019 3:36 pm
I think I am going to buy the divMMc to load these patched games. I bought a 99p tape with 3.5mm audio jack but I didn't have much success with PlayZX on my phone - but I believe this is not outputing a high enough voltage to work...
Keep in mind that DivMMC can’t load TZX files, only TAPs.

You phone may indeed not have enough oomph to drive the Spectrum. Some phones are better at it than others. Mine works fine, for instance. A simple portable headphone amplifier may do the trick. Check out this thread. Someone was having a similar issue and a headphone amp resolved it completely.
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Every man should plant a tree, build a house, and write a ZX Spectrum game.

Author of A Yankee in Iraq, a 50 fps shoot-’em-up—the first game to utilize the floating bus on the +2A/+3,
and zasm Z80 Assembler syntax highlighter.

frasbo
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Re: Dizzy Treasure Island Crashes After Tape Load

Post by frasbo » Fri Oct 18, 2019 8:08 am

t is possible to play it on a +2A. You could either load it in 48K BASIC—it’ll work as a 48K game, or select the +3 BASIC menu, type usr0 and press Enter. The computer will reset. Don’t panic; just type LOAD “” and load the game. The sampled speech at the beginning (“Welcome to Treasure Island Dizzy”) will sound distorted, but that’s about the only downside.
Thank you very much - I got it working by loading it through 48K BASIC :-) - I must have done this as a kid... Sat and played it for an hour - played it a few years ago on an emulator - but there is just something about playing it on real hardware. Its so easy just to switch to another game on an emulator but when you sit and load a game for 5 minutes - you force yourself to sit an play it :-)

Yeah I will maybe spend a bit of more time with the ZXplay app - I have a few other android devices I could try...

Thanks again for all your help.
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