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ID Category [?] Severity [?] Reproducibility Date Submitted Last Update
06052 Graphics Minor Always Oct 25, 2015, 19:38 Nov 14, 2017, 16:30
Tester demotester View Status Public Platform MESS (Official Binary)
Assigned To Resolution Open OS Windows XP
Status [?] Acknowledged Driver zx.cpp
Version 0.166 Fixed in Version Build Normal
Summary MESS-specific 06052: zx81: Results after testing several demos!
Description 1) Somewhat Less Limited Capabilities ->

   mame zx81 -ram 16k -cass sllc.81

   Does not work! (black screen)

2) Severely Limited Capabilities ->

   mame zx81 -ram 1k -cass slc.p

   Seems fine!

3) There Are No Limits ->

   mame zx81 -ram 16k -cass nolimits.81

   It shows the text screen but after decompressing got only a black screen! (works in EightyONe emu)

4) TV noise ZX81 ->

   mame zx81 -ram 1k -cass tvnoise.81

   Seems fine!

5) survival ->

   mame zx81 -ram 1k -cass survival.p

   Does not work! (but works in EightyONe emu)

6) rezurrection ->

   mame zx81 -ram 16k -cass rezurrection.p (Note: used fixed version!)

   Does not work! (but works in EightyONe emu)

7) Multi Scroller Demo ->

   mame zx81 -ram 16k -cass MS.P

   Does not work! (black screen) (but works in EightyONe emu)


   mame zx81 -ram 16k -cass helloworld-pl.p

   Seems fine!

9) Puzzle99 Demo ->

   mame zx81 -ram 16k -cass puzzle.p

   Does not work! (black screen) (same in EightyONe emu)
Steps To Reproduce See under description!

to load in emu type: Load "" (enter), and press play on tape!
Note: press "J" for command Load and 2 x "LShift + P" for letters ""
Additional Information Other emu (for test purposes): EightyOne 1.0a ->
Regression Version
Affected Sets / Systems zx81
Attached Files
There are no relationship linked to this issue.
User avatar
Oct 25, 2015, 19:49
By default in z81 driver on screen there are not visible left and right border sides!

To adjust that one needs to go on "Tab / Slider Controls" and set "Screen Horiz Strech" to something (f.ex.) like 0.770 !

Is that correct way how it works in mess! (tnx)
User avatar
Senior Tester
Oct 25, 2015, 22:29
the z81 needs rewriting anyway, it represents quite a substantial abuse of simple hardware, I believe Olivier is on the case.
User avatar
Oct 27, 2015, 16:05
edited on: Oct 27, 2015, 16:20
Hmm, not sure, but that can happen perhaps because of the usual problem: quantity or quality , right?

I suspect that most people (users) choose quality before quantity and that could be another problem. (unfortunatelly) :(

I do not know , it may be that I am completely in the wrong thinking , so it would be interesting to hear what others think about it.
User avatar
Oct 27, 2015, 17:45
edited on: Oct 27, 2015, 17:47
I do not know , but this way of marking driver with " working " or "not working " not feel most objective .

perhaps should instead be introduced following evaluation with respect to the achieved degree of accuracy of each driver :

For example...

not yet established

In preparation

and so on...

in this way would be perhaps a better insight for the user and may encourage authors of drivers to improve their works. :)
User avatar
Apr 9, 2016, 17:48
edited on: Apr 11, 2016, 10:24
I have tested all above demos again on 0.172 version and all works fine except 2 demos; "9) Puzzle99 Demo" and "6) rezurrection demo".

The "Puzzle99 Demo by Bodo Wenzel":

pouet comment quote:
"This demo is for ZX-81 16Kb and hi-res add-on. It contains hi-res 256*192 gfx plus interlace.
The hires add on is simply a alterntive wiring to allow the charset being in the 16K epansion."

The "rezurrection by calodox" demo, there are 2 versions:

1) - the party version called "":
Note: this version has not been used for above MESS testing!

pouet comment quote (by minas):
"This is a 4k for the good old Sinclair ZX81 with 1k of RAM - therefore a 5 part 4k :-) Wave files are included in the package for those with a real machine (remember to remove your rampack, it will not work with it). Will also probably not run on any emulator other than the one provided (at least I don't know any emulator that runs it properly, if you find one please tell me)"

2) - the "fixed" version called "":
Note: this version has been used for above MESS testing!

pouet comment quote (by minas):
"I don't have the slightest idea what that fixed version is about - I only ever released the one you get in the original download. Maybe it is the one that Bodo Wenzel repacked for 16k ZX81, maybe not... Whatever... All required wav files are in the original download. There are no .p files since the intro uses a speedloader (Yes! Really!)."

pouet comment quote (by YERZMYEY/H-PRG):
"That's weird. I loaded it into real hardware and sadly it is not software hi-res. The demo work properly only on ZX-81 with hi-res modification, doesn't work on regular ZX-81 sadly."

pouet comment quote (by minas):
"OK, that file is the version that Bodo Wenzel modified - not my original. My original is a 5-part intro for 1k ZX81, and it does not (and I really mean not) support rampacks or extensions of any kind. It will only run on original european 1k ZX81 machines. The hi-res modification is only required for rampacks, without a rampack the weird refresh-read wiring is already present on the mainboard :-) - i.e. the 1k machine is already hi-res enabled by default."

My comments:

So, according to above pouet comments; the rezurrection "fixed" version and "Puzzle99 Demo" need ZX81 with 16k rampack and "hi-res modification"??? --> see EDIT below!

Regarding rezurrection "fixed" version:
on MESS it does not work at all and on EightyOne it runs but not properly - when compared with the pouet video!
(I guess this "hi-res modification" is probably not emulated in any emu, so that is why it is not work properly!) --> see EDIT below!

Regarding the rezurrection "party" version (cdx), it should work on ZX81 1K without any modifications, right!?
but on on MESS or EightyOne 1.2 emu seems it does not work??? (or I do not know how to run it properly?) --> see EDIT below!

Btw. the ZX81 driver now works really nice! (thx OG for fixing)

Only the one small problem could be with the soft reset (F3) - the "K" cursor seems not shown on the same place after the F3 reset as it is placed after the hardware reset???

The rezurrection "fixed" version and the "Puzzle99 Demo" work fine on EigthyOne v1.2 emu if RAM PACK = 16k and High Resolution = WRX !
(Note: EigthyOne v1.2 - Option / Hardware... / Settings - High Resolution = WRX)

The rezurrection "party" version works fine on EigthyOne v1.2 emu if RAM PACK = None + High Resolution = WRX !
(Note: The .wav files load via Tools / Wav Loader...)

Hmm, according to this it seems that both rezurrection demos (fixed and party) still need High Resolution WRX to work properly !? (at least on EigthyOne v1.2 emu)
User avatar
Apr 11, 2016, 11:36
edited on: Apr 11, 2016, 16:45
Ok, found some Hires games that work on EigthyOne v1.2 emu with RAM PACK = 16k and High Resolution = None! (so, it works w/o any Hi-res enabled modification!)

Hires Invaders - and more detail:
Hires Pacman - and more detail:

Tested on MAME 0172 / ZX81 16k memory:
Hires Invaders - loads fine in game menu but cannot start the game play cause the key "1" does not work!???
Hires Pacman - works fine! (the key "1" works here)

ZX81 Hi-Res Explained -->
ZX81 Video Mode Pseudo Hi-Res Graphics and True Hi-Res Graphics -->
HIRES ON A 1K ZX81 -->

So, according to above findings it seems the ZX81 in MAME now supports only the Pseudo Hi-Res Graphics!
(exapmles: Hires Invaders or Hires Pacman)

A standard ZX81 with only 1K memory should already support WRX-Hires without any modifications, but seems this is not yet implemented in MAME!?
(examples: rezurrection "party" version or WRX1K demo)

The EigthyOne v1.2 emu supports 1K memory WRX-Hires, but will not work if the WRX is not enabled in the menu options!
(but did not managed to start the WRK1K demo on EigthyOne v1.2 emu either?)
User avatar
Nov 14, 2017, 16:30
edited on: Nov 14, 2017, 16:32
Ok, let me chime in here since I own a real Timex Sinclair 1000 and two ram expansions. If no external ram pack is plugged in on the real machine, I have 2K of internal ram and WRX hires graphics works fine, as long as the program fits in 2k. If I plug in my Sinclair 16k ram pack into my real Timex Sinclair 1000, WRX graphics will not work. If I plug in my ZXpand 32k ram pack and expansion, WRX hires graphics works fine even with large programs. Besides the ZXpand, which is a new product for this old machine, several common modifications allowed access to this hires graphics mode and many programs exist which use it. The links below have further information.

A configuration option is needed to enable/disable WRX hires graphics in MAME if more than 2k of ram is configured. If the ram size is 2k or less, WRX should always be enabled.