This version of the Pi1541 is made just as small as the Raspberry Pi Zero. It will run on Raspberry Pi 1, Zero, Pi2 and Pi3, but the small size makes it perfect for the Pi Zero computer. Size limitation made no room for a screen, but all the other accessories are there, like Power LED, activity LED, Buzzer to emulate drive sound, reset button and 5X menu buttons.
Note: currently the Pi’s HDMI screen is not suppported on the Pi Zero, 1 or 2.
Note: currently the USB keyboard and drives are not suppported on the Pi Zero, 1 or 2.
Note: currently the emulated drive sounds are not suppported on the Pi Zero, 1 or 2.
These will be supported later, and the hardware is already set up for it when it is supported.
So what is this Pi1541? The Pi1541 is a real time, cycle exact 1541 emulator by Steve White. It basically connects to a Raspberry Pi 1, Zero, 2 or 3 to emulate a Commodore 1541 floppy drive. (If you want to overclock those older Pi models, Use the config.txt to set the values. The sign # is used to make the Pi ignore the text. Remove it to enable the settings.) Why do we need this when there is the SD2IEC? Its because a lot of games and demos utilize the chips inside the 1541 floppy drive, so without them, the program or game will not work. Here, the Pi is emulating those chips, so that the games will work. No more games that wont load due to incompatibility. The Pi1541 has all the buttons, LEDs, connectors and stuff that ports the Pi to your old computer. It can be used with your Commodore 64 or 128, VIC20, C16 or even the Plus/4. All you have to do is to copy the files over to the root of the Pi memory card, and copy your games and program into the same SD-card and insert it into the Raspberry Pi. You should check out the authors website for the latest version of the software. Link is below.
There are several ways to use this, but I decided to use it the same way I used to use the SD2IEC. I just start the File Browser and use the C64 keyboard to select my game. When everything is connected and turned on, I just use it as if it was a normal 1541 floppy. The latest news it that now, it also can emulate the Commodore 1581 floppy drive, it supports more file versions and it now also supports USB thumbdrives too!
Look at the size difference between the Zero and the “normal” Pi1541. The one in the picture has the limited edition 1.3″ OLED screen.
SD CARD SETUP
1. Format an SD card to Fat32.
2. Download the Raspberry Pi Firmware from the Raspberry Pi Foundation.
3. Copy the files bootcode.bin, fixup.dat and start.elf (found in firmware-master\boot)) into the root folder of your SD card.
4. Copy over a file that contains a 1541 ROM image into the root folder of the SD card. The ROM must be called dos1541 or d1541.rom or d1541II or Jiffy.bin.
5. (OPTIONAL) Copy over a file that contains a CBM font ROM (eg vice-3.1\C64\chargen) into the root folder of the SD card. The ROM must be called chargen. This will enable Commodore charset on the screen.
6. Copy your disk images and folders into the 1541 folder now found on the SD card. Or, simply download the below pre made setup and extract it to a SD card. You can start with that to be up and running right away.
The only 2 differences between this setup and the one from my full version, is this setting in the options.txt file found in the root folder of the SD card: “splitIECLines = 1” must be changed to: “// splitIECLines = 1” and Each version of Raspberry Pi needs their own files due to different CPU and speed. Choose the one you have from the list above.
This project with PCB and parts can be purchased on ebay: https://www.ebay.com/usr/kirsti_73
or from Sellmyretro.com