News Team Current issue History Online Support Download Forum @Pouet

01 - 02 - SE - 03 - 04 - 05 - 06 - 07 - 08 - 09 - 10 - 11 - 12 - 13 - 14

Alive 6
[ Back to main ]

4.  Blitter

    The Blitter, introduced in 1988 by Atari to massively speed up VDI
    copy and move operations, is NOT present in the TT.
    The TT does not have a Blitter.
    This makes sense in some way, as the CPU in the TT is a lot
    faster when it comes to copying blocks around the memory than the
    CPU in the ST is. If source and/or destination are even located in
    TT-RAM, which the Blitter could not access anyway, the speed gain
    is even more massive.
    TOS 3.0x therefore does not offer Blitter-based VDI-routines. All
    attempts to access the Blitter will crash the TT.

  Compatibilities and incompatibilities
  => In comparison to the Atari ST and Atari STE:
     The ordinary ST usually does not have a Blitter (only the Mega ST
     series has a Blitter), the STE does have a Blitter. In the ST
     (where present) or STE, the Blitter does mean quite a speed-up.
     However, if you are trying to program the ST or STE in a
     TT-compatible way, you may not use the Blitter.

  => In comparison to the Atari Falcon030:
     The Atari Falcon030 does have a Blitter, and for most copy
     operations, the Falcon-Blitter, even though it's operating at 16
     Mhz, is a factor of 3 to 4 slower than the CPU is on the same
     operations. Therefore, it is usually not adviseable to use the
     Blitter in the Falcon anyway. To program the Falcon in a
     TT-compatible and efficient way, you may not use the Blitter.

  => What to look for when writing ST programs:
     No Blitter in the TT. That's all to mind.

[ Back to main ]
[ Onto Next Chapter]

Alive 6