I received this MCU for Battle Chopper today.
The decap-process worked without any problems and within some minutes i had the internal rom dumped.
Another long missing MCU is now preserved.
Thx to Ordyne & rtw
This is in no way a finished product and the PCB will not be available for the next few months! I only wanted to show that this exists and that i'm working on it.
I already dumped a couple of Sega ST-V carts some years ago. But that always meant to desolder the flashroms and dump them with an selfmade Arduino-dumper one by one...and some flashroms (on the bottom side) have even a mirrored pinout which is not support by any dumper ...and even if you had dumped all flashroms you had to solder the flashroms back to the PCB, which is another pain work...and sometimes even fails!
So when i got a new undumped cartridge from Darksoft a couple of weeks ago, we were thinking, that it would be a good task to make a cartridge-dumper for the ST-V system...that way the dumping process would be so much easier.
My first attempt looked promising, but always only the first three flashroms of the cartridge got dumped, over and over again, but never the other chips...after alot of tracing i was pretty sure, the problems are the PALCE chips, which control the CE, OE of the chips.
Darksoft also confirmed my theory with his notes about this.
So i wrote an Arduino program, which stepped threw all 64 possible combinations and always dumped the 2MB of available data between them. This worked! But i had a dump of 64 x 2mb, with a couple of empty roms, and some duplicates.
Afterwards i could downsize the combinations and now this dumper can dump all soldered flashroms of the PCB directly.
This is version 0.1, which dumps the data in an serial stream to the PC:
Version 0.1 is working perfectly for dumping, but has some design-flaws.
So Version 0.2 is already in the works, which will remove the design flaws and will most likely add support for a small Display (showing which flashrom is currently dumping) and i will most likely also add an SD-Card Slot, so you can dump the flashroms directly to an SD-card.
Even with version 0.1 we now have already an pretty easy way to dump ST-V carts! So stay tuned for updates about Version 0.2!
The Arduino-Board is pretty simple, uses standard parts and so all parts (even for v0.2 with the display and sdcard-slot) will only cost about 8eur. Take an cheap chinese Arduino MEGA clone...and for about 20eur, everyone can then dump ST-V carts!
IF YOU HAVE AN UNDUMPED ST-V CART, CONTACT ME! :-)
thx to Darksoft and Brizzo for the help!
In April 2020 i already posted about my Arduino Mega Shield v0.5, which supported cartridges from 10 Systems. This already got made a couple of times around the world and new V.Smile dumps from the US, France and UK got made with it!
The last couple of months i invested some time into the PCB and now i'm proudly presenting version 0.6 from the board.
V0.6 adds support for cartridges from Genius Leader Color, Genius Leader Super Color, Bandai Super Note Club, PreComputer 1000 / 2000, Mister X and Genius Leader 2000.
Full List of Supported cartridges:
In the last couple of years we also saw a couple of Vtech V.Smile cartridges, which were not supported with the 0.5 version of the board, this got solved with v0.6.
V0.6 also got an "Expansion Port", which can get used for future support of other systems.
The board itself is pretty basic and has only five switches for Voltage, Bits, Romsize and special switches (CS1 & CS2) for V.Smile (more on that later).
It uses two PCI- and two standard 2.54mm edge-sockets for the cartridge-slots.
Dumping takes about 45seconds per megabyte which will be about 6minutes for an 8mb rom.
IMPORTANT: ALWAYS DUMP EACH GAME AT LEAST TWO TIMES, WHILE ALSO TO UNPLUG AND REPLUG THE CARTRIDGE BETWEEN BOTH DUMPS! TO CONFIRM THAT THE DUMP IS GOOD, BY COMPARING THE CRC's FROM BOTH DUMPS!
THIS IS REALLY IMPORTANT, AS A BAD DUMP IS USELESS, LIKE TO HAVE NO DUMP!
Let's see how to insert the cartridges into this dumper...(i used some pictures from v0.5, but this is the same for v0.6!)
You can dump the cartridges directly by putting it into the black slot at the bottom. While i would highly recommend to also open the cartridge so you can also document the PCB of each game. At least in german-europe alot of different game-revisions got released for the V.Smile, most times you only could see which revision it is, on the pcb itself.
Explanation of the CS1- and CS2-Switch:
While most V.Smile carts only have one chip inside the cartridge and therefore a maximum size of 8mb, some of the games have two chips inside the cartridge. Older (first releases) games had for example two chips inside. One with 4mb and one with 2mb, so these games have a size of 6mb. The last few released cartridges on this system needed more space for the games, that way they used two 8mb chips inside the cartridge, therefore these games are 16mb. (for example Toy Story 3)
For old releases you need to get the 4mb chip dumped with CS1 to L and CS2 to L. For the second 2MB chip you need to set CS1 to H and CS2 to L.
For the 16mb games (Toy Story 3) you need to set CS1 to L and CS2 to L for the first 8mb. For the second 8mb you need to set CS1 to L and CS2 to H.
Don't forget to set both switches back to L after you finished dumping the game!!
ROM-Size: 8 or 16
V.Smile-CS1 & CS2: L
To get the cartridges dumped, you have to open it. As only the bare PCB fits inside the socket. Insert it like on the picture above, with the glob pointing to you. It's the top socket on the left side.
Always check that the cart-edges fit to the pins of the socket, starting from PIN1 on the left of the socket!
|TL866IIPlus and the TSOP48v3 base board. Both needed.|
|TL866IIPlus - Dumping Adapter|
|Mobigo-Cartrige inside the Adapterboard, which is on top of the TSOP48v3 base board and inside the TL866IIPlus|
Another great Dumping Union story...
Brian found an Quizard-interface-board with an italian MCU on it, on ebay. As the seller only shipped within Italy another great guy from the DU jumped in. F205v bought the board and documented it here on his site. Afterwards he sent the board to me, for decapping the MCU.
It arrived today and i immediatly started the decapping-process...
It's really nice, that the process is really easy and that it's finished within just 10 minutes. Making the pictures and writing this blog-post took more time, as the decapping itself.
Afterwards i could read the D8751H with my programmer and got an 4kb file. Testing it in MAME worked perfectly and so you can now play all revisions of QUIZARD 1 in italian language!
So "introdurre Monete" and answer some italian quiz-questions! ;-)
Thanks to f205v for paying everything here and thx to Brian for keeping the eyes open for undumped stuff!
The Aladdin Deck Enhancer is another device for the NES, which basically acts as an adapter. Designed by Codemasters and published by Camerica it sadly was a fail. The idea was to get games produced cheaper and therefor also can sell them for less to the consumers. But released in 1992, this was most likely just too late for the NES.
Only seven cartridges got released for the system. Two 4in1 carts and five single-game cartridges, which makes total of 13 games.
Some weeks ago i got the chance to buy an Aladdin Deck Enhancer in Germany, which included the Dizzy-cartridge. This cartridge was always bundled with the base-unit and is therefor the most available cartridge for this system.
As it's impossible to buy other cartridges for the ADE here in Europe, without paying the high taxes by importing it from the US, i started to reverse-engineer the cartridge.
My first goal was to get all official 13 games on one cartridge. While i was into it, i saw that the same NES-mapper's got used by
Camerica also for standalone-single-game releases for the NES. For
example the "Quattro Arcade" cartridge for the NES is using the same mapper as the ADE-4in1 cartridges (Quattro Sports, Quattro Adventure).
In the end i had a compilation of 25 games (including the three 4in1 carts)...which would need 4mb of space and which all work on the Aladdin Deck Enhancer.
The designed PCB's worked exactly like with the original cartridge. All games start and are playable perfectly.
Another interesting fact of the ADE is, that the base-cartridge contain's a reversed method of the lockout-chip, to get the games running on the NES, without licensing it from Nintendo. I don't know exactly how this reversed lockout-method works on NTSC-NES-consoles, but on PAL systems it basically only works on every second/third console-startup to trick the NES.
So basically with my PAL-NES i have to start/reset the console mostly a couple of times, to get the lockout-method working and the games running. It's exactly the same with the original cartridge.
My next step was to design a 3D-printed case for this multicart. The original cases are pretty unique and have some parts which are not easy to print with a normal 3D-printer. The second challenge was the limited maximum height of the cartridge, which was pretty low.
With some not working printed examples at first, i step by step got it fitting better and better. In the end i was pretty proud of the final result.
Designing a cartridge-cover sticker is the most annoying part for me, as i'm not a graphicer ;-)
In the end i'm happy the cart is now finished and working. Finally i can play 25 games with my Aladdin Deck Enhancer.
I already made two multicarts for this system back in 2019. Those work without any problems, but as the prices of electronic parts raised the last couple of months, i reworked the design, so that it could get produced for the same amount.
Now we have here an All-In-One Multicart for the Bandai Datach. It includes all 7 seven games for this console and as a bonus it includes the game "Battle Rush" a second time, patched with the Debug-Menue enabled.
The cartridge has now a case directly included!
Tony asked me a couple of months ago, if i could make a multicart for the SUPER VISION 8000. A console from 1979, which was most likely the first console, which used ROM-cartridges.
Getting this console is nearly impossible these days, getting games for even more impossible...
Naive like i am, i told Tony, if he will send (borrow) his console to me i will do it. Some weeks later the console arrived, including MISSILEVADER as game cartridge. Already at the first evening i had a working multicart-prototype. So i finished the pcb-design, made a 3d-printed shell for it and now some weeks later here we are.
The first multicart for the SUPER VISION 8000, containing all seven available games for the console.
Here's the DIP-Sheet:
This is it! The third and final revision of a Multicart for the GAME KING!
Back in 2019 in released a Flashcart with 512kb of space, which could fit 4x 128kb games. In 2020 i released a new design with 4mb of space, and with 4 carts you had ALL available games in your hands.
Some weeks ago, i reworked it again, and now i'm finally finished with it ;-) This new cartridge has 16mb of space and can hold ALL available games for the handheld. In fact you have 92 games in one cartridge!
Designing the cartridge-case was pretty interesting, as the cartridge uses nearly the complete available space inside the cartridge-slot, but it worked out pretty nice.
It also has the seven GAME KING 3 games included, which only work on the GK3 of course!
The 92 games on the cartridge are:
Available with someone wants one...
The CASIO LOOPY, another obscure console from Japan, which had no flashcart so far.
Back in 2019 i already had a basic cartridge-design ready, which had space for 1-2 games and while it had no RAM-support, it worked pretty good for most of the games. This was basically just a proof of concept and shortly after i sent the design to Phil Bennett, who did an amazing job with it, which will most likely be in MAME sometime in the future.
In 2022 i took the basic-design and reworked it from scratch. I added RAM and did fill up the cartridge with four 27c322 eproms. This means the cartridge has 16mb (128mbit) of space for 4-8 games.
The game-library of the Loopy is not big, only 10 games (9 are dumped) and 1 extra device (Magical Shop) got released.
Which means, with only two multicarts you can basically have a full-set of all Loopy games. My next task was to design cartridge-shells and that worked out pretty good too.
The 8in1 multicart is full with all eight 2mb games. The 4in1 has the two 3mb games included and has space for 2 other games. It's extendable, which means if ever the missing "Chakura-kun no Omajinai Paradise" get's dumped, just program it on a 27c322 and solder the eprom into the cartridge. Even a forth 27c322 could get soldered in, if someone will do a homebrew game for the console in the future.
The battery for the RAM is easily accessable from the backside of the cartridge.
The labels on the cartridge are self-printed and hand-cut and include the switch-settings for each game.
After everything was finished i designed a minimalistic cartridge-stand which can hold five Loopy cartridges:
And here are some pictures of all games on the multicarts:
i have only a very limited amount of each multicart available (4 pieces each). If someone wants a full set (both multicarts) i will include a cartridge-stand for free.
If all multicarts are sold, i will most likely do one more batch of 5 pieces each. Most likely i will not do a third batch, as they are just to much work to get them assembled and the prices of the needed components got insanely high the last few months...
1st Batch - SOLD OUT
2nd Batch - SOLD OUT
No carts are available anymore!