Yeah, it was years ahead of its time. The Gameboy Advance was a decade
later and still primarily for hardware sprites on tile maps.

But I'd still much rather see, say, a simple three-register thing: push
source address, push destination address, push length and it raises the
halt line and then copies that many bytes from source to destination at the
maximum rate (allowing for screen refresh). That's probably even simpler to
implement than hardware sprites, being just the innermost loop. The CPU
still has to do quite a lot but not too much, I think.

Anyway, neither option is really something I consider particularly
essential or even necessarily useful for a 2015 Sam 2. Just things we wish
had been in the 1989 Sam 1.

On Tuesday, 28 April 2015, Aleš Keprt <> wrote:

> Technically you are correct, but I think you cannot compare the
> professional product of top class technology company like Atari with
> amateur home made product like this Sam Coupe 2. I think even the original
> Sam Coupe was rather a home made product than a professional computer
> hardware on the technology level possible in the 1980's.
> -----Původní zpráva----- From: Thomas Harte
> Sent: Tuesday, April 28, 2015 1:55 PM
> To:
> Subject: Re: Prototype of case for planed new computer SAM COUPE 2
> True, but both the Lynx and the Sam came out in the same year and the Sam
> was the more expensive of the two. The Lynx gets away with it, I think,
> because it's pushing only an 8kb frame buffer — 160x102 in 4bpp. So divide
> all your mental calculations by three.
> ... though, of course, I wouldn't advocate it if fun games are your real
> objective.
> The Lynx's design is what Needle and Mical did after the Amiga and before
> the 3DO so it's from that lineage of design. The graphics hardware is like
> an Amiga plus in many ways, though a 6502 was all they could fit into the
> mobile transistor budget.
>  On 28 Apr 2015, at 07:22, Aleš Keprt <> wrote:
>> AKAIK the hardware sprites are much simpler to implement. I don't know
>> Lynx, but the blitter like you described needs uncomparably faster hardware
>> than a set of hardware sprites.
>> A.
>> -----Původní zpráva----- From: Thomas Harte
>> Sent: Tuesday, April 28, 2015 1:12 PM
>> To:
>> Subject: Re: Prototype of case for planed new computer SAM COUPE 2
>> I'm inclined to think the Atari Lynx is the pinnacle of '80s graphics
>> chipsets: just a frame buffer and a scaling blitter. No need for all the
>> special-case sprites/backgrounds nonsense.
>>  On 28 Apr 2015, at 06:32, Leslie Anderson <> wrote:
>>> In an ideal world you could have :
>>> 32/8 full colour hardware sprites ...16x16 or 8x8 ? with sprite
>>> collision detection ?
>>> Hardware scroll vertical/horizontal
>>> Increase in Colour palette
>>> Hardware line interrupts (programmable) to switch palette at a fixed
>>> number of scan lines ? No need for CPU intervention.
>>> Even a second Video processor to give superposition, Superimposed video

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