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  1. Sprites 1

    Following on our investigation of the Namco 04xx, here we look at the sprite bitmaps found in Pole Position. We know that both 32x32 and 16x16 sprites are supported by this hardware.

    Data Flow

    Sprite bitmap ROMs are found on Pole Position schematic sheet 14B. We find that five pairs ...

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  2. Namco 04xx And Sprites

    Chip Pins

    An online reference from Dig Dug reveals the following.

    Namco 04xx Pins

    The following restates that table with connection information in Pole Position.

    Pin Name IO Signal in Pole Position
    1 1H I HPOS0(1H)
    2 2H I HPOS1(2H)
    3 /HSYNC I /HSYNC
    4 H4 O H4*
    5 H8 O ...
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  3. Namco 07xx

    There are two Namco 07xx custom chips in Pole Position: one on the CPU board and one on the video board. They perform the same function on each board, which is to determine the exact position of the CRT beam.

    Only the 07xx on the video board is directly related ...

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  4. Colors

    There are various ways to interpet the colors available in Pole Position.

    The final output of the video hardware is realized with a 12-bit digital-to-analog resistor network. Because of this, Pole Position might generously be called a 4096-color game.

    The wikipedia article states that 3840 colors are available. Not sure ...

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  5. PAL-1

    There are two Z8002 CPUs in Pole Position, labelled A and B. Each has a custom logic chip labelled PAL-1. Here is a portion of the schematic redrawn.

    Pole Position PAL-1 Equivalent Circuit

    Chip Analysis

    It's evident from the analysis that PAL-1 decodes certain Z8002 bus transactions, and generate signals to complete those transactions ...

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  6. Namco 54xx

    In Pole Position the Namco 54xx custom chip appears in the Miscellaneous Sound Generators section. Here is the portion of the schematic redrawn.

    Pole Position Noise Generation Circuit

    Chip Operation

    We know the Namco 54xx is a Fujitsu MB8844 MCU with a mask ROM. Thanks to Guru, we actually have the ROM contents, so we ...

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  7. Namco 52xx

    In Pole Position the Namco 52xx custom chip appears in the Speech Processor and Memory section. Here is the portion of the schematic redrawn.

    Pole Position Speech Generation Circuit

    Chip Operation

    We know the Namco 52xx is a Fujitsu MB8843 MCU with a mask ROM. Thanks to Guru, we actually have the mask ROM contents ...

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