So I was browsing the web and long story short, I am thinking about making a DIY, homebrew, what ever you want to call it, x86 computer. I don't want a super long explanation(appreciated though as long as it is informative) but how could I make an x86? Do I need to buy an actual x86 processor or do I need to buy an assortment of parts to make an x86? I havent done much research yet. The point of this project is to help me learn about computers.
You can't bake even an 8-bit x86 in your garage, so you have to buy a chip. Why don't you get a Medfield, that's a SoC, and you "only" have to break out to periphery. It's by far the easiest solution if you plan on making your own mobo on a breadboard, which will already be super complicated to get every bit of power delivery right and have the whole thing work without sideeffects and interference. If you don't want the SoC route, you're going to have a really tough time, even with an old x86 chip with just an old SuperI/O controller. With ICH chips and stuff, it's virtually impossible, all the connections are so small and there are no sockets for these chips anymore, and you can't solder them, you have to flow it on a dedicated board, etc... and there are hundreds of connections to the CPU with more modern chips.
With a Medfield SoC, the number of CPU connections is at least not too high, everything is well documented, and all the controllers are on the chip.
But I have no clue where they hell you're going to get a functional BIOS from to make the thing work. There are open source BIOS projects, but not for x86 SoC's that I know of.
Why don't you build yourself a nice ARM-based computer, that's much more feasible in my opinion.
what he said, I don't even try to comprehend that magic voodoo behind CPUs and Mobos to the extent of how they work
As Zoltan suggested, you may be better off trying to make a home brew 32-bit ARM based computer as they have a lot of development boards to choose from right now on the maker market and are decently capable for what they are.
I would go further back and built a 8bit computer first (e.g. atmega based) and after that you can do pretty insane stuff with an arm core.
that post damn near gave me a seizure
My plan is to get an 8 bit and then scale up. this whole thing would be hand assembled using a breadboard(Forgot to mention that). Then once that starts to get crazy I will look into getting a board ready and stuff. The project isn't even in alpha, it's just a thought right now. I just want to get my ground covered before I start actually considering what parts. my hope is to get an x86 going(not an ACTUAL core i5. Nonononono. Like the individual components that go into bread boards. RAM, BUS, different ICs, etc. ) i just want to know what the best way is to get an incredibly simple x86 system going. (Probably an oxymoron right?). Once this project is complete, I hope to have a DIY computer complete with video and sound and such. I know that the learning curve is steep but I'm ready for it.
However, if you REALLY recommend ARM, I will most likely do that because I have read that x86 is a night mare.
is this spam ?
If you want to build a CPU from scratch, use a RISC ISA. CISC designs are going to be too complex to implement from scratch.
Here is a site that details the construction of a TTL CPU: http://cpuville.com/index.htm