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A-SID

A-SID

C64

Getting the program to work on the C64 is a somewhat lengthy process but brings great satisfaction. We’re sorry we couldn’t make it easier since we didn’t have the time and resources to actually produce and sell everything that’s needed. So you need to DIY following these instructions.

1. Download the program

First of all, you should download the program.

2. Copy to cassette

Then you should copy it to a cassette (since disks are notoriously for losers). The Commodore 64 Survival Manual suggests using ferric oxide Type I audio cassettes. We had reasonable success with these ones as long as they were not recorded multiple times.

You have essentially two options for recording:

  1. you can use a dedicated interface such as Remzi64’s 1530USB (recommended, but be sure your datassette is properly calibrated);
  2. you can branch your sound card output to a cassette recorder and set the volume to max (yes, you want clipping).

In either case, we suggest using WAV-PRG (it even runs on Linux via WINE, which makes us particularly happy) as follows:

  1. start the program, champion;
  2. choose “Convert a PRG, P00 or T64 file to sound or TAP or WAV” and click “OK”;
  3. choose the appropriate machine version in the Output format (PAL vs NTSC);
  4. choose “Sound card” in the “Output to” frame (we had the best results also changing “Frequency (Hz)” to 48000 and “Volume (1-255)” to 255 in the “Advanced options” frame);
  5. click “OK”;
  6. choose the “asid-1.0.0.prg” file BUT DON’T CLICK OK JUST YET;
  7. you ABSOLUTELY MUST delete the spaces from the “C64 name” field and write “ORASTRON A-SID” instead, otherwise where’s the fun?
  8. start recording the cassette
  9. finally click “Open” and wait until the program has finished copying.

If all goes well you can LOAD the cassette and you should see the “FOUND ORASTRON A-SID” message. Otherwise, if you went with the sound card + cassette recorder method, you could try again also selecting “Inverted waveform” in the “Advanced options” frame.

3. Build an audio/video breakout cable

Build a breakout cable that has one on end a male DIN-8 262° connector (they seem to be not so easy to find, we got a few from here and on the other two female TS audio connectors (audio in and out) and optionally a female RCA connector (video out). You can still use the RF port to take the video and audio outs to the TV.

DIN-8 262° connector pinout, female socket view
PinSignal
2Ground
3Audio out
4Video out
5Audio in

Do not feed input signals that exceed line level! We don’t want to see more fried SID chips around.

4. Build an expression pedal to paddle adapter (optional)

If you want to use an expression pedal to control the cutoff you need to build yourself an expression pedal to paddle adapter, which has on one hand a female DE-9 connector and on the other a female TS audio connector.

DE-9 connector pinout, male socket view
PinSignalConnect to
7+5VTS tip
9Pot XTS sleeve

You just need to connect the pedal output to the adapter — yes, one cable only, no need to connect the pedal input… MAGIC!!!

While C64 paddles have an impedance range of 0 to 470 kΩ, the calibration procedure allows you to also use common pedals with lower maximum impedance. However, we still recommend using pedals that have the widest impedance range you can find as they give better impedance readings.

5. Branch everything, load…

… and press play on tape. When the program is loaded type RUN and press RETURN (sorry, we haven’t implemented tape autorun yet) and just follow the instructions on the screen and enjoy.

VST3

Here is the VST3 version for Windows/x86-64, Linux/x86-64, macOS/x86-64 (Mac Intel), and macOS/ARM64 (Apple Silicon) for you to freely download.

In order to install it, you just need to unzip the file and move the asid.vst3 folder into the user or system VST3 folder, which are typically located at:

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