Classic Computer Magazine Archive COMPUTE! ISSUE 26 / JULY 1982 / PAGE 191

Promqueen Cartridge For VIC-20

The Gloucester Computer Bus Co. Inc. Promqueen Cartridge provides EPROM programming, operating, and emulating capability for the Commodore VIC-20 computer. All necessary connections are made when the Promqueen is plugged into the VIC's expansion port. The internal programming voltage power supply includes current limiting to prevent damage to the cartridge or the computer in the event of operator error or faulty EPROMs. The Promqueen supports 2716, 2732A and 2732 EPROMs.

The Promqueen contains four kilobytes of RAM for testing programs before burning them on EPROM. A MIMIC switch permits an external computer to access programs written into Promqueen RAM. In MIMIC "mode a jumper cable connects between the Promqueen zero insertion force socket and the socket in the external computer for which an EPROM is desired. This feature allows use of a VIC with Promqueen as a development system. A DIP switch determines which of the four VIC expansion blocks is occupied by the Promqueen. This allows the Promqueen RAM to be used to expand the user BASIC memory of the VIC. It also allows the Promqueen to be used in the Commodore Super Expander in conjunction with other cartridges, such as Commodore's VICMON, without address conflicts.

EPROMs in the ZIF socket can be run directly on the VIC. A ZIF socket isolate switch permits EPROM changes with the VIC on. Thus a variety of routines from different EPROMs can be used to develop new programs in the Promqueen RAM.

The Promqueen has a reset button for recovery from crashes, eliminating the need to store programs before testing them.

A toggle switch sets the Promqueen for either 2716 or 2732A EPROMs, changing the voltage as required. 2732s can be programmed after readjusting a pot.

A general purpose hex loader program on EPROM is included. The program loads into the VIC's memory, freeing the EPROM socket. The hex loader permits convenient loading of code for processors other than the VIC's 6502. It includes labels, block move, offset calculation, number conversion and more. It also runs the burn process, checks EPROM erasure, and verifies burns. Software for storing BASIC programs on EPROM is included. The user's manual includes step by step instructions as well as tabular summaries of the Keystroke command options.

The Promqueen cartridge costs $169.50, plus shipping.

Gloucester Computer Bus Co. Inc.
6 Brooks Road
Gloucester, MA 01930