Loading Software via the MTX Cassette Port

About original Memotech hardware.
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Dave
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Loading Software via the MTX Cassette Port

Post by Dave »

PLACEHOLDER FOR WHAT IS HOPED WILL BE AN ACTIVE DISCUSSION TOPIC

Whilst there are a number of emulated disk systems available for the MTX, including REMEMORizer, CFX and MFX, some MTX users still choose to use the cassette port for loading software, either using legacy cassette players or more modern audio devices. These methods often result in some frustration and disappointment; issues such as degraded audio tapes, failing cassette players, poor quality audio files and even MTX hardware failures are common.

The purpose of this thread is initiate a discussion around the use of the MTX cassette port and for users to share their experiences, good and bad, in the hope that any useful learnings can be shared with other MTX users.

Obviously, one, if not the most, common problem with using the cassette port is that prerecorded MTX tapes are now around 40 years old and many have degraded to the point where they are unusable, particularly if they have been stored in less than ideal conditions, such as lofts and sheds. Sadly, there is not much than can be done in this situation, though other threads on the forum may be helpful to users trying to clean up degraded tapes.

Similarly, there are other, better, threads on this forum which discuss issues with the MTX tape interface hardware and the intention of this thread is not to discuss MTX hardware issues or how to find and/or repair legacy cassette tape players; these becoming pretty rare now and prone to a range of issues that are only going to get worse (think broken/perished drive belts, damaged heads, etc.).

It is my hope that this thread can be used to capture "best practices" for using alternative methods to providing audio input to the MTX cassette port using sound files, such as .wav etc.

Please describe the method(s) that you use to communicate with the MTX tape interface, the hardware that you are using, audio format(s) used, issues experienced and any fixes that you have used to improve the situation.
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gunrock
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Re: Loading Software via the MTX Cassette Port

Post by gunrock »

Can't offer too much as I have never loaded or saved to cassette on my Memotech. Interestingly (for me, at least!), I tried to repair a cassette deck I picked up locally but even after replacing the belt and some cogs, another issue persisted in the transport system. I bought another, identical unit to try and cobble together a single working one, but until I get some more time, I am still tapeless.

I am very interested in Nassim's custom CaSDuino-type device. It'd be great if he could share more details.

Greetings, BTW, Dave. Hope all is well with you.
Steve G
Danish Memotech MTX 512, MFX and loving it
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Dave
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Re: Loading Software via the MTX Cassette Port

Post by Dave »

Hi Steve,

I’m fine thanks and trust that you are too?

Yes, I am hoping that Nassim can add some detail here

Regards
Dave
acsi
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Re: Loading Software via the MTX Cassette Port

Post by acsi »

Call me nostalgic but although I do have various CF and SD solutions for my machines I do love loading from tape.
It's been awhile though since I've had an MTX out but thanks to Nassim I was able to load Football Manager and save/load the game state.
I went through a stage of buying MTX tapes and have a bit of a collection. From memory all but one work fine.
And not that there has been any MTX software released on Cronosoft for the MTX but I do tend to purchase any Vic20 or ZX81 releases as well as the odd Spectrum game.

This is the main tape deck I use and it's still working perfectly.
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Martin A
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Re: Loading Software via the MTX Cassette Port

Post by Martin A »

No tapes left here, they were all donated to an MTX collector up in Scotland, Dave somebody??

I do have a tape deck somewhere, it was good enough 10 years or so ago to sample a couple of the rarer tapes (Ruthless B & Superbike) that got converted to MTX files for the archives.
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1024MAK
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Re: Loading Software via the MTX Cassette Port

Post by 1024MAK »

I have three working mono ‘shoebox’ cassette tape decks (not including Commodore Datasettes or those built-in to computer systems). One of which is my original from the early 1980s.

However, I only occasionally load from tape (because I don’t have many) and it’s been a while since I did. I will say that it’s easier than loading from cassette on a MTX than a ZX81!

Mark
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Step up to red alert. Sir, are you absolutely sure? It does mean changing the bulb :!:
Looking forward to summer being good this year :D

Not as many MTXs as Dave! :lol:
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