I recently picked up a Spartan-6 FPGA board from ebay (for $32!) so I thought it would be fun to load the MCL86 core and wire it up to an IBM PC 5150. The Xilinx Spartan-6 LX9 costs close to $10 which is significantly cheaper than the $150+ Kintex-7.
Voltage dividers were used to translate between 5V and 3.3V and the FPGA’s IO drivers were set to PCI33 so the VCC clamp diodes would be enabled. Around 10% of the FPGA’s logic was used by the MCL86 which implemented the 8088 Maximum Mode bus interface.
I read that back in the 80’s two software packages were used to judge if a computer was 100% IBM compatible. One was Lotus-123 and the other was Microsoft’s Flight Simulator. I have already run Lotus-123 successfully on the MCL86 but have not tried Flight Simulator until now. I was not sure which version of the simulator was used, so I tried both!
Here it is:
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