HQ video playback on a C64

Can you play video on a C64, and if so, how about some high quality video?  These questions never really came to mind back in the 80s and early 90s, as clearly you need a lot more RAM than the 64K you had on your breadbox C64.  No, video clearly was something only possible on the high-end machines like the Amiga… or was it?

As with many things related to the Commodore 64, coders try to squeeze out every little piece of RAM or MHz out of this quintessential machine for home computing, even to this date.
It thus comes as no surprise that video playback (and I mean really high quality video playback) is one of those great challenges present day Commodore fans/coders want to overcome… and they have!

The first thing that was needed, was a RAM Expansion Unit (REU) that can handle say roughly 16MB.  In a previous article, I discussed the different existing models at the time (like the 1750, 1765 REUs manufactured by Commodore) and mentioned that back in those days, there really was no software base that made good use of the capabilities of a REU… video would have been one of them, but as said before, we would really need more than the 1MB which was already top of the line back then. Some present day cartridges offer this capability, like the Chameleon (discussed in that same article) and another one being the 1541 Ultimate-II.  This cartridge is basically like a Swiss-army knife as it offers a wide range of features, next to being a REU that can actually handle the needed Mbytes:

– Commodore 1750/1764 REU Compatible with sizes selectable from 128K up to 16 MB
– Full emulation of real 1541 drive (allowing the storing and loading of D64-files)
– MicroSD or USB storage device
– C64 cartridge emulation like Final Cartridge III, Action Replay, Super Snapshot, …
– And much much more

Next, you need the “Nuvie” player, a PRG-file that you can load into your C64 and which will basically take care of stuff like codecs etc. needed to run a smooth video file.

Combine these two and you’ve got the components to meet the challenge of high quality video on this machine from the 80s… So get set to start playing some awesome video files on your C64.

And as it’s the Christmas season, enjoy this fantastic HQ video, running on an actual C64, showing a winter wonderland… Merry Christmas!!

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4 Responses to HQ video playback on a C64

  1. Pingback: Tweets that mention HQ video playback on a C64 | A Commodore Geek's Blog -- Topsy.com

  2. Pingback: Laser-disc games for the C64 | A Commodore Geek's Blog

  3. this emulator can be used to yamaha psr 530 to play music to the place of cartridge? if is yes tell me how to buy it. plz send the answer to my e-mail.

  4. Pingback: Il Commodore 64 nella tana del drago. Finalmente Dragon's Lair

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