Panasonic FS-A1FX
This page was last modified 17:37, 3 November 2021 by Mars2000you. Based on work by Grauw and Gdx and others.

Contents

Description

Computer

The FS-A1FX is a computer released on the Japanese market by Panasonic. It is the same as the FS-A1WX but without MSX-MUSIC or Word processor, which explains why the "取消" (Cancel) and "実行" (Execute) keys are missing.

The Ren-Sha Turbo feature provides auto-fire mode while playing games. The repetition speed can be adjusted with a slider.

This model was available in black and red on the front.

Brand Panasonic
Model FS-A1FX
Year 1988-10-21
Region Japan
Launch price ¥57.800
RAM 64kB in slot 3-0
VRAM 128kB
Media MSX cartridges, 2DD floppy disks
Video Yamaha V9958
Audio PSG (AY-3-8910 compatible, integrated in MSX-Engine T9769x)
Chipset Toshiba T9769 model A or B
Keyboard layout QWERTY/JIS + numeric keypad
Extras CPU Turbo mode, 720kB 3,5" floppy disk drive, firmware switch, pause button, Ren-Sha Turbo slider (autofire), Kanji-ROM level 1, Kanji BASIC, Cockpit firmware, Utility disk with MSX-DOS 1 and files used by the firmware
Emulation ROMs dumped and emulated. The firmware switch is emulated in the OFF position, such that the machine will not by default boot to the integrated firmware application. This can be changed in openMSX with the "set firmwareswitch on" command.

Firmware

The firmware is launched automatically when you boot the machine. Bypassing this software on startup requires the user to press the DEL key during boot until a Beep sound or to change the position of the front switch before booting the computer.

The built-in Cockpit software has different features, just like its predecessor Deskpac on the Panasonic MSX2 computers.

Its menu presents 7 options:

  • 0 - Screen Colors
  • 1 - Clock
  • 2 - Calendar
  • 3 - Disk Utility
  • 4 - Video Graphics (in screen 8)
  • 5 - Picture Gallery (in screen 12)
  • 6 - MSX-BASIC

Besides, icons give access to Clock Settings and Screen Adjust.

Options 3 to 5 require the utility disk in drive A. The Video Graphics application in screen 8 is a version without superimposing and digitizing support, but there's an icon for using the FS-RS500 scanner.

Software

An utility disk was provided with this computer.

Besides MSX-DOS 1, the disk includes several files that are useful with the firmware.

Pictures

Computer

Panasonic FS-A1FX
Panasonic FS-A1FX with box
Panasonic FS-A1FX right side
Panasonic FS-A1FX back
Panasonic FS-A1FX PCB
FS-A1FX FM chips location
FS-A1FX manuals + floppy disk
Panasonic FS-A1FX floppy disk
Panasonic FS-A1FX drive
Panasonic FS-A1FX box
FS-A1FX battery location
Panasonic FS-A1FX label

Firmware

Cockpit Menu
Cockpit Clock Settings
Cockpit Screen Adjust
Cockpit Clock
Cockpit Calendar

Utility disk

Cockpit Disk Utility
Cockpit Video Graphics
Cockpit Picture Gallery

Specifications

The FS-A1FX is a MSX2+ with 2 cartridge slots (one at the top, one at the back) and a Z80A integrated in the MSX-Engine T9769(A or B) from Toshiba. This Z80A can be switched from to 3.58 MHz to 5.37 MHz via I/O port. The floppy disk controller is the Toshiba TC8566AF.

There is a front switch to disable the Cockpit firmware execution on startup.

Main RAM can be natively expanded to 256kB internally. (See below)

MSX-MUSIC can be added internally by soldering the missing chips. The main difficulty is to add the ROM. (See below)

Floppy Disk Belt specifications:

Type: Rubber Belt
Thickness: 0.3mm
Diameter: 58mm
Width: 3mm

Original Slot Map

Slot 0 Slot 1 Slot 2 Slot 3-0 Slot 3-1 Slot 3-2 Slot 3-3
Page C000h~FFFFh Cartridge
Slot 1
Cartridge
Slot 2
64kB
Memory
Mapper
Page 8000h~BFFFh Kanji driver A1 Cockpit
Page 4000h~7FFFh Main-ROM Disk ROM
Page 0000h~3FFFh Sub-ROM

Modified Slot Map

(Removing of A1 Cockpit and addition of MSX-MUSIC)

Slot 0 Slot 1 Slot 2 Slot 3-0 Slot 3-1 Slot 3-2 Slot 3-3
Page C000h~FFFFh Cartridge
Slot 1
Cartridge
Slot 2
64kB
Memory
Mapper
Page 8000h~BFFFh Kanji driver
Page 4000h~7FFFh Main-ROM Disk ROM MSX-Music
Page 0000h~3FFFh Sub-ROM

Connections

CPU Turbo mode

Contrary to Sony and Sanyo MSX2+ systems which run only at 3.58 MHz, the Panasonic systems are capable of running at 5.37 MHz. In Basic this can be achieved with the following commands:

Activating the 5.37 MHz Mode

Switching to Turbo 5.37 MHz mode can be activated with this command:

OUT 64,8: OUT 65,0

Prefer to use the following line in your program:

IF PEEK(&H2D)=2 THEN OUT 64,8:IF INP(64)=247 THEN IF (INP(65) AND 4)=0 THEN OUT 65,0

Deactivating the 5.37 MHz Mode

Switching back to 3.58 MHz is done with this command:

OUT 64,8: OUT 65,1

Prefer to use the following line in your program:

IF PEEK(&H2D)=2 THEN OUT 64,8:IF INP(64)=247 THEN IF (INP(65) AND 4)=0 THEN OUT 65,1

Maintenance / Repair / Upgrades

Recommended batteries: Lithium batteries or Eneloop (white or cyan).
Batteries advised against: Alkaline batteries because they leak one day or another.

Links