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Thread: New to me Rainbow 100A and VR201

  1. #21
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Liverpool, England
    Posts
    368

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    The Rainbow came with a Microline 83a, manuals and box of very old fan fold paper. I'm not interested in the printer. The belts look ok, probably needs a new ribbon a clean and oiling etc but looks in good condition. If anyone would like it and can collect from Merseyside send me a PM and you can have it for free. I won't post as I don't have any packaging.

  2. #22
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Liverpool, England
    Posts
    368

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    I decided to try gnupublic's method but instead of nylon I use a guitar string, well two in fact as one snapped.(0.11 gauge Picato but I guess Ernie Ball's or Fender may work. ***Safety first*** Use protective goggles and gloves in case the wire snaps or glass breaks*** This worked a treat, I put the wire in a hacksaw frame. I advise using single strand guitar wire not the heavier wound gauges unravel and may mark the glass. I cleaned off the remaining glue with a utility knife blade and then glass cleaner. The last couple of pictures are the VR201 and Rainbow powered up without the safety glass ( I don't advise powering on without the safety glass, but the suspense was killing me). Now to work out the best method to install and mount the glass.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by PG31; October 12th, 2019 at 05:37 AM.

  3. #23
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Liverpool, England
    Posts
    368

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    I'm getting keyboard error, its not the keyboard or the UK ROM as I've tried a US ROM and keyboard. Oddly enough if I press setup that works. Any ideas where to start? I have the VR201 circuit diagram, I'll start from there but thought I'd ask while I search. I have the Rainbow technical manual from Bitsavers, this has a lot of info to digest. Maybe someone has seen this error before and knows the resolution. A recent postee also has the same issue I believe.

    Edit, Not much to look at on VR20 in regards to keyboard. +V appears ok with meter. I'll drag a cope out and check.

    kbvr201.JPGlk201.JPG
    Last edited by PG31; October 12th, 2019 at 06:20 AM.

  4. #24
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Liverpool, England
    Posts
    368

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    I checked the 12v with an oscilloscope and I'm actually measuring 11.96v, very little noise. Is this voltage to low? I don't see any adjustment in the technical manual. The fact that I can get into setup on the keyboard and use "ctrl setup" to do a reset. Also I can alter the parameters in setup hints to me that the keyboard and Rainbow are working so I'm wondering why I'm getting a keyboard error on power on?

  5. #25

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    I would say the 11.96 is fine and probably within its designed tolerance. In my limited electronics experience, voltages aren't always precisely 12.00000000000V.

    At least you didn't blow a keyboard when I made an adapter for my Rainbow...

    I've read anecdotes here and noticed myself that Rainbows seem to have an affinity for LK201-AA keyboards over others.

  6. #26
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Liverpool, England
    Posts
    368

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    From the technical manual I have identified that the PUSART P8251A controls the keyboard along with a line driver and receiver, I haven't found the circuit diagram for the 100A but I'm guessing that the 74LS244 is the line driver and receiver both in one package. Neither IC's are in sockets. Can anyone confirm? I'm also doubtful that this either of these is going to be my issue. When I press each key on the LK201-AE I get a key click and I can go into setup and use the arrow keys and previous and next keys to scroll through the options. I can even use shift S to save and ctrl setup to do a reset. Anyone else had a similar issue? Thanks. The error that I see on screen is "Consult user manual - keyboard" I'm not with the Rainbow at the moment so the message displayed on screen is from memory and is probably slightly worded wrong.

  7. #27

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    I've contacted @PG31 to ask if he was willing to dump the Rainbow 100A's BIOS and language ROMs for inclusion in the MAME emulator, and he kindly agreed.
    Unfortunately he has no means of reading the ROMs, and sending them from the UK to Germany is too much of a hassle.

    I'd like to ask if any of the participants in this thread have already dumped the Rainbow 100a's ROMs (the B version is already present in MAME) and is willing to share them or alternatively if someone located in the UK has an EPROM reader and could dump the ROMs.

    Robert

  8. #28

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    I sure wish I could help. I have a Rainbow 100A but no way to dump ROMs.

  9. #29
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Silicon Valley USA
    Posts
    806
    Blog Entries
    4

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    Quote Originally Posted by tradde View Post
    I sure wish I could help. I have a Rainbow 100A but no way to dump ROMs.
    The technical manual says ROM0 lives at 0xFA000, ROM1 lives at 0xFC000, ROM2 lives at 0xFE000 in 8088 address space. Each ROM is 8KB. Simple program to dump ROM contents?

  10. #30

    Default

    You could try following http://mess.redump.net/dumping/dump_bios_using_debug although in my experience direct readouts via a Prommer are more reliable.

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