KiCad schematics and gerbers for a YM sound card for the RC2014. See it in action here:
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YM2149F/AY-3-8190 Sound card for the RC2014 computer

Picture of the board

Video demonstration:

The board

This is a YM2149F/AY-3-8910 sound card for the RC2014 Z80 8-bit computer. It adds the ability to make music with your RC2014!

What can you use this for?


  • Stereo Line out, with golden ratio mixer. If you only want mono, jumpers can be used in place of the mixing resistors.
  • Header for the 2 8-bit I/O ports. These could be used for reading from joysticks, additional serial ports, LED indicators etc.
  • Both YM2149F and AY-3-8910 ICs may be used
  • Jumperable to the same IO port as the ZX Spectrum AY, making it easier to play ripped Spectrum music.
  • Tested with standard RC2014 setup, as well as under CP/M with Scott Baker's 512k RAM/ROM SIO/2 and CTC boards. No address conflicts were observed.
  • Divides the RC2014 clock by 2 or 4 using flip flops to bring it under the 2Mhz max clock speed of the AY.
  • Additionally supports enabling the YM2149F's internal clock divider. This means that bus speeds up to 16Mhz could be supported without overclocking the chip. (AY does not have this feature)


The Yamaha YM2149F and General Instrument AY-3-8910 are popular sound chips that were used in a wide variety of computers and arcade machines in the 1980s and 1990s. The most notable of those being the ZX Spectrum 128, Atari ST and MSX computers.


Jumpering the pins marked default below will give the board a data port of 0xD0 and register port of 0xD8. The example programs in the player directory should work without modification.

Pin 1 is identified by having square pad.


Use the A4 line high for chip enable

pins description
1-2 No
2-3 Yes - Default


This is not present on boards prior to Rev 5 Use the A4 line low for chip enable. Either this OR JP1 can be set to yes, but not both at the same time.

pins description
1-2 No - Default
2-3 Yes


Use JP1, JP7 and JP4 settings for address decoding

pins description
1-2 Yes - Default
2-3 No (Use A15 - Spectrum 128 address mode)


Register mode selector i.e. which line in addition to the base address needs to be high to select address bus mode. The YM has 3 bus modes: read, write and address, address is used to specify the register for the next read or write operation.

pins description
1-2 A14 (Spectrum)
3-4 A3 - Default (Register IO port is base address + 8)
5-6 A2 - (Register IO port is base address + 4)


Base address

pins with JP1 on 1&2 and JP7 on 2&3
1-2 0x0
3-4 0x80
5-6 0x40
7-8 0xC0
9-10 0x20
11-12 0xA0
13-14 0x60
15-16 0xE0
pins with JP1 on 2&3 and JP7 on 1&2
1-2 0x10
3-4 0x90
5-6 0x50
7-8 0xD0 - Default
9-10 0x30
11-12 0xB0
13-14 0x70
15-16 0xF0


External clock divide

pins description
1-2 Divide by 2
2-3 Divide by 4 - Default


YM2149 only, internally halve clock if jumpered


J1 - 3.5mm audio out

J2 - 2 8 bit I/O ports


Rev 3 of the PCB unfortunately omitted the schematic references from the silkscreen - please refer to the below picture which has the references on.

Board Layout

Bill Of Materials

Qty Schematic Reference Description
2 U1 U2 16 pin DIP socket 2.54 mm pin pitch, 7.62 mm wide
1 U5 40 pin DIP socket, 2.54mm pin pitch, 15.24mm wide
1 U5 Yamaha YM2149F or General Instrument AY-3-8910
1 U4 74HCT74
2 U3 U4 14 pin DIP socket 2.54 mm pin pitch, 7.62 mm wide
1 U3 74HCT00
2 U1 U2 74HCT138
2 R6 R7 1k6 ohm 1/4 watt metal film resistor
2 R4 R5 1k ohm 1/4 watt metal film resistor
3 R1 R2 R3 3k ohm 1/4 watt metal film resistor
1 P1 40 pin right angled 2.54mm header
1 J1 Cliff FCR1295 3.5mm PCB mount jack socket
2 C6 C7 470uF electrolytic capacitor
5 C1 C2 C3 C4 C5 0.1uF ceramic capacitor 2.54 mm pin pitch
2 JP1 JP2 JP5 3 x 1 straight pin header 2.54 mm pin pitch
1 JP3 3 x 2 straight pin header 2.54 mm pin pitch
1 JP4 8 x 2 straight pin header 2.54 mm pin pitch
1 J2 9 x 2 straight pin header 2.54 mm pin pitch
5 Various Jumpers

If you want mono output, use wire links for R4 R5 R6 and R7

I've also made the BOM available on Octopart

The majority of the components are fairly generic and can be swapped out with other parts, e.g. all the 74HCT' components, resistors, pin headers, capacitors etc. The audio out jack must be the Cliff FCR1295 however, which only seems to be available from Element 14 (Farnell, CPC etc) and Rapid. See

Both the AY-3-8910 and YM2194F are unfortunately not in production any more, but reclaimed chips are available fairly plentifully on eBay from suppliers in China. I would suggest using a standard 40 pin DIL socket for the AY as they are more accommodating to bent/soldered pins than a turned pin ones.

How to use from BASIC

See the BASIC programs in player/test. descend.bas plays some descending tones, io_in.bas demonstrates reading from the IO port, and io_out.bas demonstrates writing to an IO port.

How to play Protracker 3 tunes using PTxPlay

  1. Toward the end of PTxPlay.asm are some incbin statements which include the music file as data. Uncomment lines as required for the desired tune.
  2. Build a .ihx file by running make pt. This requires the SJASM assembler.
  3. Load .ihx file
  4. DOKE &h8124, &hC000
  5. PRINT usr(0)

How to use from CP/M

A command line PTx player for CP/M is available here:

Additionally, Wayne has incorporated a player called "Tune" into RomWBW that will play PTx and MYM files See here for the source:

Start the Microsoft basic interpreter, mbasic, and refer to the above BASIC examples.

Alternatively, the PTxPlay source in this repository can be assembled with an origin of 0x100(adjust the ORG line in PTxPlay.asm from 0xC000 to 0x100). The resulting binary can then be uploaded and run as a .com file.

Things to experiment with