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Hardware News   Hardware News : Amiga Kit Stocks Apollo Team Accelerators
   posted by amigakit on 28-May-2017 23:40:01 (3124 reads)

Amiga Kit stocks new Vampire v500 v2+ from Apollo Team
28th May 2017

AMIGA KIT Amiga Store is pleased to announce that it has reached an agreement with the Apollo Team to retail the Vampire branded accelerator cards to our worldwide customer base.

We have already received a limited amount of Vampire v500 v2 stock and this has been added for sale. We are hopeful of more stock arriving shortly in the next month.


The new accelerator is powered by the Apollo/68080 Core which is the natural and modern evolution of latest 680x0 processors. It's 100% code compatible, corrects bugs of 680x0 designs and adds on top most of the cool features which were invented the years after.

Apollo core : a game changer
Back in the 80s, Motorola was leading the market with his 680x0 CISC processors range, selling it to big companies like HP, Apple, Atari, Commodore, NeXT, SEGA and others. Today, 680x0 is still used by industrial machines, planes industry, cars vendors and is still used by retrocomputing fans around the world.

When put in an FPGA, the Apollo offers a good combination of moderate FPGA space consumption and excellent performance.

Apollo surpasses the performance of 68060 ASIC by far - even when only using low cost FPGA.

Performance Amiga-land deserves
Bored of tiresome 68020 performance, or the expense of 68060 accelerators and not feeling the same emotions with emulation? Apollo core resolves all those topics!

The Apollo accelerators are faster than a 68060 at 100MHz, delivering more performance to Amiga than ever before. It now makes web browsing, listening to MP3 music, watch videos a more enjoyable experience.

In addition each card can output 32-bit video through RTG and SAGA drivers.

The Apollo core on the FPGA can be upgraded from periodic updates release by the Apollo Team.

In response to the news, AMIGA KIT Managing Director Matthew Leaman said: "We are thrilled to stock and support these exciting and innovative products from the Apollo Team. In 2017 it is amazing to see the hard work and dedication that has gone into this project. It will certainly let Amiga users get a lot more from their computer at a great price."

Gunnar van Boehn of Apollo Team commented: "Lets work together to bring 68K and AMIGA back!"

Igor Majstorovic of Apollo Team also said: "From my perspective I m very excited to work with AmigaKit. AFAIK we can do all bunch of stuff in the future together."

For more information, please visit:

www.apollo-accelerators.com
www.amigakit.com/apollo

    

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PosterThread
fishy_fis 
Re: Amiga Kit Stocks Apollo Team Accelerators
Posted on 29-May-2017 5:39:41
#1 ]
Super Member
Joined: 29-Mar-2004
Posts: 1829
From: Australia

Nice bit of kit, but I think the much repeated phrase of "faster than an '060" should be clarified and made more accurate. "Faster than '060 in interger" is the actual truth. For floating point operations its massively outclassed by a factor of 50 or so.
Even an '020+68881 is significantly faster for floating point operations.
According to a conversation with the developers on IRC a few days ago it will *never* receive an FPU either, which while their prerogative is a little disappointing.

Not trying to be negative here, it really is a pretty cool toy, but certain truths are often omitted when people sing its praises.

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omnicron10 
Re: Amiga Kit Stocks Apollo Team Accelerators
Posted on 29-May-2017 6:27:20
#2 ]
Member
Joined: 28-Oct-2009
Posts: 34
From: Unknown

True it does not have an FPU currrently. That a developer on IRC told you it will NEVER have a FPU is doubtful unless it was Gunnar who told you. Gunner has posted the EXACT opposite though on the forum.

http://apollo-core.com/knowledge.php?b=4Če=5931

"...The status is:

APOLLO has a fully working FPU, supporting SINGLE, DOUBLE and EXTENDED precision calculations.

While the APOLLO FPU was successfully used in some customer project, for usage in 68K AMIGA OS some more testing was found required.
The Apollo-team did ask for AMIGA coders community to help testing 12month ago - in this time no coders applied for this.
So it became clear that the FPU priority in AMIGA world is not very high.
This makes sense as the majority of AMIGA software does not use FPU at all.
While we have a FPU now, we also know that the FPGA technology will allow to reach floating point performance 1000 times faster than existing Motorola 68060 CPUs we need to look for a solution which we can use long time and which allow benefit from these FPGA technologies. Therefore its advisable to verify and review the design to make sure that its future-proof.

If 68k coders are interesting in supporting this then please contact us. Ideally via IRC or via email : myfirstname @ apollo-core.com

Please note that coders willing to support need to be willing to put in significant time, and that all development will be done with 68k ASM. ..."


If you need an FPU NOW... this is not for you yet.

If you want the FASTEST CPU without a FPU and that has and will have more goodies soon... GET IT ASAP!

I have had 060 and this is faster for everything I ever did on the 060 since FPU was not a major item for me.

BTW, on a lot of the ported games that were compiled with 060/FPU support and RTG, there have been noFPU versions redone and they are faster than the 060 machines.

Thanks


_________________
A500/030 40mhz with A530, Indivision ECS, , KS 3.1, 2 Megs Chip, 8 Megs fast.
A600 Vampire II Black Edition, SumA600 USB KB Adapter
SAM440EP 667, Amiga OS 4.1u1
Dual G4 1.2 Mac MorphOS
Chameleon
CD32
SX64
128D
128

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fishy_fis 
Re: Amiga Kit Stocks Apollo Team Accelerators
Posted on 29-May-2017 7:25:26
#3 ]
Super Member
Joined: 29-Mar-2004
Posts: 1829
From: Australia

Here's a copy and paste of the relevant part of the log:

[BigGun] very simple
[BigGun] no fpu for vampires!
[Mindblighter] fpumpire
* mbrantley wakes up
[pisklak] BigGun: I have no problem with that
[BigGun] people shall buy it for what it is period
* mbrantley tears up
[BigGun] people shall NOT expect to get anything extra for free
[BigGun] very simple. end of communication


To be fair I guess Vampire and Apollo core are seperate things, but isn't Vampire the Amiga hardware featuring the Apollo core?
A little clarification would be nice.


edit: replaced greater and less than symbols with square brackets due to greater and less than symbols, nor what they contain showing up within the post.

Last edited by fishy_fis on 29-May-2017 at 07:28 AM.

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omnicron10 
Re: Amiga Kit Stocks Apollo Team Accelerators
Posted on 29-May-2017 7:53:20
#4 ]
Member
Joined: 28-Oct-2009
Posts: 34
From: Unknown

Apollo core is BigGun, Vampire 1 and 2 Hardware for A600 and now A500 were designed by Majsta. Kipper2k was building a selling the boards for the team too. Not quite sure who else is involved since I have not seen a "team" listing of people.

What BigGun (Gunner) has been saying since day one is BUY it for what is does now.

That is what I say too. I love it for how well it works now and I have Gold 2.

For Gold 3 they might have AGA and more SAGA features and drivers working. FPU could be part of GOLD 3 too but it might not.

I don't know who was talking before BigGun stated "I have no problem with that
people shall buy it for what it is period...people shall NOT expect to get anything extra for free
very simple. end of communication"

The extra features that might come in the future in GOLD 3 or future GOLD X COULD be extra cost in my opinion.. They have spent a lot of time in adding those amazing ideas. I would pay a small additional cost for some of those.

If you read the forums and see how some people demand and behave, it takes very tough skin to make something new like this with people DEMANDING features and most of the time not really knowing what they really want or making sense. They are getting constant pestering from people that think they know better on how to make design a product.

AMMX was added in the Vamipre code since it was easier than FPU and gave more "bang" for the FPGA space. In addition it was well documented and version of the Intel MMX instruction set with some restrictions removed.

From what Gunner has stated, he wants a truly new performance level from a FPU core and wants help in highlighting the features he has in mind. There has been very little help from others in that part from what I can tell. He said that just adding a FPU with 68882 features does not bring a level of performance that can bring the platform forward more than existing chips have.

Finally, there are not a lot of Amiga FPU programs. There are defiantly some desirable FPU programs and demos but compared to the number of non-FPU programs, it is very little.

Again, if you need FPU then wait or get a 68881/2 or 060 for those few FPU programs.


_________________
A500/030 40mhz with A530, Indivision ECS, , KS 3.1, 2 Megs Chip, 8 Megs fast.
A600 Vampire II Black Edition, SumA600 USB KB Adapter
SAM440EP 667, Amiga OS 4.1u1
Dual G4 1.2 Mac MorphOS
Chameleon
CD32
SX64
128D
128

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xray 
Re: Amiga Kit Stocks Apollo Team Accelerators
Posted on 29-May-2017 8:15:27
#5 ]
Member
Joined: 10-Mar-2003
Posts: 16
From: Suisse

For Switzerland, France, Belgium, Luxembourg (french speaking country) RELEC have already stock of Appolo V500 and V600
http://relec.ch/frch/index.php?page=shop.product_details&flypage=flypage.tpl&product_id=58&category_id=5&option=com_virtuemart&Itemid=2&lang=fr

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Overflow 
Re: Amiga Kit Stocks Apollo Team Accelerators
Posted on 29-May-2017 9:18:19
#6 ]
Super Member
Joined: 12-Jun-2012
Posts: 1547
From: Norway

From my understanding the Apollo core got FPU, but the current Vampire FPGA cant fit the FPU without giving something else up.
So, if they migrate to a bigger FPGA down the road, I GUESS the FPU could be available.

So we should distinguish between the Apollo Core and the current generation of Vampire FPGA.

Correct me if Im way off.

As for the IRC chat log; I was in the chat when Gunnar made the statement, and the tone wasnt demanding per see. But Im not there THAT much, so who knows what he has seen in the past the last months.
Then there is the forum threads asking for this and that, which I guess can get anyone annoyed after a while. Espesially since its a hobby level project, with shoestring budget (if even).

Its like Daniel/Daytona has said in the past "as long as I sell enough copies of my game to recover the expenses for coffe and sigarettes/smokes, Im happy!".
I think people forget this reality when they demand xyz (Ive been guilty of it myself).

Last edited by Overflow on 29-May-2017 at 09:22 AM.

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wawa 
Re: Amiga Kit Stocks Apollo Team Accelerators
Posted on 29-May-2017 12:24:03
#7 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 21-Jan-2008
Posts: 6140
From: Unknown

@ fishy_fis

this quote has been reported to be out of context on eab. are you kev? i dont think so..

other than that i dont have any particular communications with gunnar as of late, nor do i visit theirs irc, but i remember one thing. in the past gunnar strongly opposed to have the complete 68k instruction set in the fpga hardware. movep and bitfield discussions on eab come to mind. now all that is hardware implemented, magnitudes faster than original.

in this respect, i d say: buy the vampire for what it is today, not for what it may become. but still it might become more that it is being communicated yet.

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Hypex 
Re: Amiga Kit Stocks Apollo Team Accelerators
Posted on 29-May-2017 15:58:54
#8 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 6-May-2007
Posts: 9478
From: Greensborough, Australia

@fishy_fis

Quote:
Nice bit of kit, but I think the much repeated phrase of "faster than an '060" should be clarified and made more accurate. "Faster than '060 in interger" is the actual truth. For floating point operations its massively outclassed by a factor of 50 or so.


This is interesting as emulators tend to be faster at integer.

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Hypex 
Re: Amiga Kit Stocks Apollo Team Accelerators
Posted on 29-May-2017 16:24:54
#9 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 6-May-2007
Posts: 9478
From: Greensborough, Australia

Quote:
If you need an FPU NOW... this is not for you yet.


Then what 68K CPU does it have? Both 040 and 060 imply built in FPU. If this doesn't have an FPU at all then it is no better than an 030. If this is the case it should say fastest 030 ever. Because with the CPU it is compared to, an 060, has an FPU on Amiga boards AFAIK.

However, saying 68LC060 would be more accurate as this is FPU-less. With max clock of 75Mhz.

Don't know how fast an 060 could be clocked at.

Quote:
AMMX was added in the Vamipre code since it was easier than FPU and gave more "bang" for the FPGA space. In addition it was well documented and version of the Intel MMX instruction set with some restrictions removed.


Bit of a conflict of interest here. What happened to Intel Outside? And were they also influenced by AltiVec/VMX?

It's kind of funny to read FPU had less interest from programmers and they couldn't find any FPU software to properly test the core with so they put in a vector unit that doesn't even exist in the 68K line. How are they going to test this when no ASM programmers has ever used it and there is no software ever written ever that uses it?

In some ways this is no different than the FPU issue. I don't think they can expect programmers to just show up. They are implementing this themselves so they need to have 68K and FPU test code. Either from themselves, using ASM or FPU optimised math libraries or a software test kit from Motorola.

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Hypex 
Re: Amiga Kit Stocks Apollo Team Accelerators
Posted on 29-May-2017 16:28:17
#10 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 6-May-2007
Posts: 9478
From: Greensborough, Australia

@wawa

Quote:
in this respect, i d say: buy the vampire for what it is today, not for what it may become. but still it might become more that it is being communicated yet.


How amusing. You could be talking about OS4.1 here. Or an AmigaOne board.

"Buy it for what it is, not for what it won't become."

That's good advice for whatever Amiga development you focus on.

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wawa 
Re: Amiga Kit Stocks Apollo Team Accelerators
Posted on 29-May-2017 20:26:30
#11 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 21-Jan-2008
Posts: 6140
From: Unknown

Quote:
How amusing. You could be talking about OS4.1 here. Or an AmigaOne board.


exactly. in which case i decide against buying into it each time id even consider. i dont think im going to buy vampire any soon eiter, even though it is much more to my liking as a product.

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amigakit 
Re: Amiga Kit Stocks Apollo Team Accelerators
Posted on 30-May-2017 14:26:11
#12 ]
Amiga Kit
Joined: 28-Jun-2004
Posts: 2302
From: www.amigakit.com

All packages packed, processed ready for despatch. Thanks to all that ordered from Amiga Kit. Log in to your account history on the web store for the package tracking.


_________________
Amiga Kit Amiga Store
Links: www.amigakit.com | New Products | X5000

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SaludaLabs 
Re: Amiga Kit Stocks Apollo Team Accelerators
Posted on 30-May-2017 20:07:44
#13 ]
Member
Joined: 8-May-2017
Posts: 37
From: Unknown

Thanks for the update, I miss out, but I will be watching for another batch.....

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newlight 
Re: Amiga Kit Stocks Apollo Team Accelerators
Posted on 2-Jun-2017 11:47:03
#14 ]
Super Member
Joined: 10-Sep-2007
Posts: 1711
From: Somewhere in Spain

I only want to say after reading only your fishy first post,that I have an ACA500 plus an ACA 1232 and I will not change for the Apollo 68080 in any way,because I don't have room for this and is a pity to throw out my ACA500 that I really don't know if it's better or not.


_________________
AMIGA 500 1.5 MB ACA500/ACA1232 accelerators
AMIGA 500 German
CD32 unexpanded
Amiga 1200 Tower on AmigaKit since years
AMIGA 1300 030/50 Mhz/32 MB WB 3.9 with lots of games&demos
AMIGA ONE XE G3 PPC 800 Mhz/1 GB RAM/RADEON 9250 128 MB/SATA CONTROLLER

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newlight 
Re: Amiga Kit Stocks Apollo Team Accelerators
Posted on 2-Jun-2017 11:48:12
#15 ]
Super Member
Joined: 10-Sep-2007
Posts: 1711
From: Somewhere in Spain

I prefer ACA500 because at least it seems more reliable.


_________________
AMIGA 500 1.5 MB ACA500/ACA1232 accelerators
AMIGA 500 German
CD32 unexpanded
Amiga 1200 Tower on AmigaKit since years
AMIGA 1300 030/50 Mhz/32 MB WB 3.9 with lots of games&demos
AMIGA ONE XE G3 PPC 800 Mhz/1 GB RAM/RADEON 9250 128 MB/SATA CONTROLLER

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Rob 
Re: Amiga Kit Stocks Apollo Team Accelerators
Posted on 2-Jun-2017 17:37:28
#16 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 20-Mar-2003
Posts: 5778
From: S.Wales

@newlight

The Vampire cards offers many times the speed compared to your ACA500 + ACA1232 combo. It also has RTG, and AGA and audio will also be added to the core which you can update yourself when new cores are released.

If the Vampire 1200 is compatible with the ACA500 then you could wait for that and have all the feature of the ACA500 and all the vampire features too.

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