World’s first C64 QUAD SID Chip: ‘BEAUTIFUL QUAD’ (Costs per SID: 5,25€)

Meanwhile there are endlessly many SID chips as replicas:

SwinSID
ARMSID
UltiSID

and many more. The first replicas were based on an ARM chip, FPGAs followed, and back to ARM. All these replicas have quirks that can be heard in many videos. There is not a single replica without errors. Some songs always sounds a bit strange. Even the supposed FPGA-SID sounds wrong on some songs (Alien Intro btw: Link).

And the replicas are not cheap. It starts at 35€ for a single SID (incl. shipping costs), and ends at 87€ for a stereo SID (incl. shipping costs). If you want to play “four SIDs” songs, then you have to invest at least 130€-170€. With the C64 Song “The Tuneful Eight” with 8 SID Chips that would be ~300€.

Looking for a cheap alternative (that’s why the 6502 was created also), I sat down and tried different things, and finally developed a QUAD-SID myself (named “BEAUTIFUL QUAD”), made PCBs and now waiting for the finished assembled boards (SMD) from China. The board costs ~1€, then you need a common developer miniboard for 20€, which you put on the board socket (very easy to handle). Since this is a QUAD-SID (4x SID, 12 Voices), this SID replica costs only 5,25€ per “SID Chip”. It can hardly be cheaper.

I am very content with it: Goal reached. And the sound is not worse than from all the other replicas.

        

If the Address lines are not used, the chip automatically works as a normal Mono or Stereo SID.

 

Last but not least: I’ve made also replicas of the PLA and 8701 Chips (5€). All these you will find sooner or later in my new “The Modular” C64: the Worlds smallest “Real” C64 (no FPGA).

Hint: this is only a fast made prototype. Later I will add many more functions to it (maybe an Octa Chip version).

 

Features:

4 x SID 6581/8580
2 x Paddles Support and Mouse Support
Optional 2nd Audio Channel Out (Raw)
Live switchable Setting-Modes via external Switches (up to 4)
C64 Software Config PRG (Inkl. Firmware Update)
LED VU Light Effects
21€

 

Raw Input Values of the Paddles (Test-Screenshot: not filtered values, in the final product the values are more accurate and “smoothed”)