Updated: Jun 10
Today, I'm releasing core version 8 for testing. This version includes two new features: changing the speed of your AppleSqueezer, and SD card access (but don't get too excited about that one just yet..)
Changing the speed
The first new feature introduces a range of speed options for your AppleSqueezer: 3MHz, 5MHz, 8MHz, 10MHz, and 14MHz. This last option operates at the familiar accelerated speed you've come to know. So why add options to make it slower? This puzzled me for a while too (after putting so much effort into making it as fast as possible! 😉), but I kept getting the request to allow this, and apparently users of a card like the ZipGS (which already had this feature) really enjoy it for various reasons. For example, you may want to play a game that runs unbearably slow at the stock 2.8MHz speed, but then is unplayably fast at 14MHz. So, in those cases, setting it to something like 5 or 8MHz can be a great solution. This is now possible, both from the CDA and the control panel:
Please note that, unlike the other settings, changing this particular option has an instant effect! As soon as you close the control panel, the speed is updated. No reboot required. This setting only has an effect when the Acceleration is enabled.
Regarding the speed numbers in MHz, they serve as approximate indicators of the expected performance compared to both the stock and accelerated speeds. The IIGS doesn't have a regular clock cycle, so putting an exact number on it like in this list of options isn't super accurate, but these numbers offer users a convenient reference to anticipate the speed range. Utilizing benchmark tools like BENCHMARKv5 will yield results that closely align with the indicated speeds.
SD card access
The other feature that's now accessible is the SD card access. That is, the hardware now allows software to access the SD card, so if someone writes a driver for it, you can use the built-in SD card on the purple AppleSqueezers to access data, hopefully some day eliminating the need for other external storage solutions. The "API" that can be used to access the SD card can be found in this PDF:
I've already written test programs that can both read and write files from/to a FAT32-formatted SD card inside the AppleSqueezer. Antoine Vignau has started on this project, so if we're lucky and he finds the time, he may come up with something!! 😊 If you see him around, give him a word of encouragement! ;)
If you're adventurous and want to start testing the new core version (currently in testing), then you can download it below! Please contact me in case you have any issues or comments! Once a few people tested it and it works well, I will move it to the official Downloads section.