Reverse Engineering the MOS 6502 CPU [video]

Here is the video recording of my presentation “Reverse Engineering the MOS 6502 CPU” given at 27C3, on the low cost CPU that arguably launched the home computer revolution.

A high-quality MP4/H.264 video file of the presentation can be downloaded here.

P.S.: If you enjoyed this, you might also like my “Ultimate Commodore 64 Talk”

23 thoughts on “Reverse Engineering the MOS 6502 CPU [video]”

  1. I cut my early coding teeth on the Z80 (gameboy + gameboy color) and always looked on to the 6502 but never got the chance. This was a fascinating presentation thank you!

  2. Great talk, great work on the good old 6502!

    I programmed the 6502 in my Apple ][ when I was young and it was a lot of fun. In these days I was able to write down machine code in hex, no need for an assembler.
    I also played around with illegal opcode at this time, but not in a serious matter.

  3. It was a fascinating talk, some of it is a bit hard to grasp but you did a good job of going back and explaining things more clearly.

    Remarkable how complex CPU’s are, even earlier designs, a lot of complex design.. timing and math.

    I don’t think people realize just how amazing it is, especially considering most people have a supercomputer in their pocket (..cell phones, PDA’s, hell.. even their watches).

    Great work.

  4. This was a great talk. I enjoyed it very much. Thanks.

    I got such a huge kick out of hearing what sounded like “basically you simulate all of physics” delivered deadpan with a German accent. For some reason I found that hilarious. Anyway…

  5. Great talk!

    Did you contact Professor Hanson to see where he got his information from?


  6. Just saw the Atari Lynx mentioned in it. Still have such a unit in my drawer, and it still works. I only played a single game on it: Chip’s Challenge. And for that you _needed_ a good joystick – I couldn’t handle the Lynx’s internal control pad, so I added a DB9 (?) joystick connector to it so that I could use a proper joystick with it. I still remember the blip playing sounds it makes. BTW, later I helped porting Oxyd to the Mac+Amiga, which was kind of similar in its play. Oh, the joy of those old 8 bit games…

  7. Hi, there is any chance to make public sources (maybe on github) your perfect6502 simulator? Would be really great! Thx for great presentation, amazing stuff.

  8. Sir/madam,
    I had assembled before 20 years a MP-6502 microcomputer. Now I have lost OR sold it by mistake.
    Now I am uploading videos on YouTube. Would you like to see ?
    If yes, I will be happy to see you inside of youtube’s above website.
    Thanks and sorry for inconvenience (if any).


  9. All of the embedded videos do not play and when I click on them, they say they are private.
    the videi that is in a separate link does play at least.

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