Spectrum 512 was a graphics program used on the Atari ST
series. These images only functioned at the ST's 8mhz, so newer,
faster Ataris were not often able to access these graphics unless
through a program that converted the files to another format.
There were programs on the ST that converted Spectrum files to GIF
and IFF, but the color palette was truncated to 256 colors of the
original 512 colors.
DreamPark Development was a local Salt Lake software/hardware
for the Atari and PC. These clever engineers were often creating for
the Atari series of computer to allow use of their full potential.
In the early 90's, DP created a little DOS program called ShowSpc.exe
that viewed SPC and SPU files with ALL 512 COLORS!!!
This program requires a VGA monitor and a fast PC. Original
Spectrum files used the extenders SPC (compressed) and SPU
(uncompressed). ShowSpc will view both.
NOTE: There is a program on the ST that increased
the compression of Spectrum 512 files and had the extender SPS.
These files are NOT compatible with ShowSpc, and must be converted
back to SPC or SPU. At the time, DP had planned to update their
program to save the files to another format, but I never found such
a release. With today's screen capture utilities, saving is EASY!
On a Windows 95 Pentium 120, conversions take about 33 seconds.
Next I will describe the method I have found works best with
1. Create a DOS shortcut to ShowSpc.exe .
Shortcut settings: CLOSE on exit; FULL Screen; enable the
[PRINT SCRN] button to capture to the buffer\clip
2. Now you can drag and drop any SPC or SPU file onto the
shortcut and it should begin the conversion.
3. To CAPTURE the image, wait until the conversion is done,
then hit the [PRINT SCRN] button or use a screen capture
4. To EXIT press the [SPACE BAR]. Most any key should trigger
the exit from DOS shell if the settings are correct.
NOTE: This program does not manage memory well. Attempting
multiple conversions may lag your system because the
program does not always COMPLETELY close. Use the END TASK
function in Windows 95 if this happens. [Control-Alt-Delete]
(once only or you will reset your system)
5. To SAVE the image in the clip board, simply open any graphics
editor that can paste from the clip board. MS Paint works
well. I suggest you use a program that can save as TIF or
PNG as JPG will reduce the original quality, and BMP files
a. ShowSpc increases image size to 640 x 400. The original
size is 320 x 200, so rescaling the image size will
not corrupt image quality, and WILL SAVE SPACE. You
may notice a black line at the top of Spectrum
pictures after conversion. The Spectrum program could
actually only make an image that was 320 x 199
because of some color limitations per screen.
The SHOWSPC archive and its contents are free of charge, and
may not be charged for unless you get permission from DreamPark
Development! I have included my own small help file in addition to
the original. I have also included an original SPC file, and some
ICOns for fun.
If you have any questions or comments, please e-mail me!
Please distribute this archive for Atari users EVERYWHERE!!!