Ready for all the latest gossip from the SAM Coupé corner
of the CRASH office? NICK ROBERTS just can’t stop playing with our
double disk-drived mate (ooo missus, don’t!).
YOU’VE GOT TO WORK HARD
Fed up with having to pull out your printer to stick in your
digitiser or running out of memory when you’re building up that
mega-database? You need to check out the new hardware coming your way from
The first offering to be pulled out of the box of polystyrene bits is the
SAM 1 Meg upgrade. This plugs into the expansion port at the back of the
computer and gives the user 1084 Kilobytes of external RAM to play with. The
extra memory is not accessible from SAM BASIC: you need to have MasterDOS to
use it effectively.
With MasterDOS loaded the main advantage of the memory Is creating RAM disk
drives. You can speed up the copying time of a disk by copying it all to a RAM
disk and then back to drive one. This way of copying cuts right down on disk
You can add up to four 1MB external interfaces to your Coupé, making
a total memory capacity of 4,718,592 bytes! The memory upgrade is only for
serious programmers and those who want faster disk copying at the moment. As
far as I know, there’s no software that uses the extra memory for
outstanding graphics and sound (yet), so I’d wait and see what’s
created before splashing out on one. The SAM Memory Interface costs £79.95
from SAM Co.
THE WHEELS ON THE BUS...
With all these new hardware add-ons on the SAM scene you can
quickly run out of places to stick them (no dirty jokes, please!). So SAM
Co have come up with the answer: the SAMBUS.
This is simply an interface which is plugged into the SAM expansion port and
has four additional ports so you can plug in all your add-ons at once. Many
pieces of hardware need extra power to make them work: the SAMBUS caters for
this, too, with an external power connector on the side. To finish the job off
in style, a real-time clock has been incorporated so you can find out the time
and date at the touch of a button.
The SAMBUS is an essential piece of kit for any SAM hardware freak and is
yours for £49.95.
What would all you SAM owners do without Public Domain software
to keep you going? Yet another disk magazine has landed on my desk this month.
Written and starring Graham Burtenshaw, it goes by the name of
Enceladus (wha...? — Ed), which happens to be the name of
a moon around Saturn (Oh! — Ed).
Enceladus is aimed towards the more serious SAM user with the first
two disks mainly containing utilities. Disk one has a selection of fonts for
use in your own programs, a character designer to create user defined graphics
and various programs to manipulate Flash! screens. There’s also
a very interesting utility that examines the contents of a disk and displays it
in graphical form on the screen. Using this you can discover screen files you
didn’t even know were there! For example, the original SAM Dos disk from
MGT had a hidden snapshot of Chuckle Egg on it!
The second issue of Enceladus has an excellently drawn title page
with yet more screen utilities and other interesting programs.
Enceladus costs £3.99 per disk and full details are available
from: Graham Burtenshaw, Enceladus.
If you’re not a budding programmer but like to see what
graphic feats your Coupé can get up to, SAM Screen could
be what you’re looking for. This is a collection of PD screens that have
appeared on various disks all collected together in one place. No more
searching through endless menus to find that elusive Bugs Bunny picture,
it’s here instantly!
If you have any pictures that you
would like included on a future edition of SAM Screen, or would like
to get a copy for yourself, write to; SAM Screen, Jason Highfield. Each
disk is £1.35.
This is where I throw down the gauntlet to any SAM owner out
there and say ‘Show us what you can do!’ Using SAM Basic (or
machine code if you’re clever enough), I want you to devise some sort of
animation routine. It has got to last at least one minute but that’s your
only restriction — the rest is up to you. The top three chosen by my
panel of judges will each get a groovy CRASH T-shirt and the best one of
the lot will get all the CRASH goodies I can lay my hands on, a prize
well worth winning! If you need any inspiration then just take a look at some
of the stuff from Zenith Graphics — or even watch Children’s
Send your entries on tape or disk (disk preferred) to the usual SAM Page
address marked ANIMATION COMPETITION. Who knows, the best of the bunch could
end up on a PD disk where you can show off your skills to all SAM owners!!
DEPECHE MODE, VISUALLY!
Zenith Graphics have been hard at work on their SAM
creating a new set of demo disks called Visually. There are
six disks altogether, each packed to bursting point with excellent screens and
some very interesting demos. Any Depeche Mode fans out there just
can’t do without some of these demos as many of them use the band as its
subject (Martin Gore in particular).
The demos include digitised pictures from the Enjoy The Silence
and Personal Jesus promotional videos, as well as an hilarious
animated Martin singing Route 66.
The first four disks each have a theme: cartoons, movies, pictures and
paintings, the last two being miscellaneous. How can you sample these demo
delights? They’re available for £1.85 each or all six for
£10, details from: Zenith Graphics. Remember, these disks are not
PD. You can only get them through Zenith.
That’s all the gossip for this month. Hope you enjoyed
our romp through the SAM world. Finally, I’d just like to make a plea to
any SAM programmer out there who thinks he/she is up to the job. Could you
please write a decent art package for the Coupé. The sluggish pointer
and irritating crashes you get with Flash! are driving me nutty! See
you next time.