Tuesday, February 11, 2014

NES TSOP ROM Adapter Development Board

The title is quite a mouth full, but I have been working on an adapter board for use in the NES. While EPROMs are still available for burning ROMs, (for development purposes of course) they are running out.

27C, 29F, 49F series chips, etc. They are no longer produced and as stocks dwindle, prices increase. Some companies do still make ROM chips though! The newly produced chip are rarely made in a DIL package though, so an adapter is needed, else the user very carefully hand solders each pin. Even with each pin hand soldered, how are you supposed to program the ROM to it? With an adapter, thats how.

So say you have an adapter for one such new ROM chip. Is the final pinout the same as a CHR mask ROM, PRG mask ROM or the old 27Cxxx/29Fxxx/49Fxxx pinout? How about all three? The thing that my adapter board has, which others may not, is solder-pad jumpers to change the pinout of the two rows of pins. Each pad is named so the user can see which pads to use when they want the pinout of a CHR ROM, PRG ROM or normal flash ROM.

The only draw back is that the Chip that I used, the GLS29EE010, is only a 1 MegaBit EEPROM. That is only 128 KiloBytes. Many NES ROMs are small enough to use these, but many complex RPG's are much larger. Now for a beginner NES programmer, 128KB is plenty of room.

Anyhow, the biggest reason that I wanted to make this adapter is so I can configure the board to be a 29F010, program it with my Willem Programmer and then reconfigure the pads for either a CHR ROM or a PRG ROM. This makes it so I do not have to modify the traces on an NES cart or connect wires all over the board.

In the pictures, you can see how far I have come. I still need to place the solder pads in convenient locations and the last thing I will do is make the board smaller. As you can see, the board protrudes past the through-hole pins. This small amount of extra board may not cause any problems, but it is best to be safe.





The above pictures are of my finished board. The top side contains the filter capacitor, a pull up resistor for the Write enable pin and the 128 KByte ROM itself.

The bottom side has all of the jumpers which are labelled accordingly. If you want the pinout of a CHR ROM, solder the jumpers which are labelled CHR, but if you want to program the chip with your EPROM burner with factory settings, the solder the 010 jumpers and set your programmer in software as a 29F010. Its as easy as that!

I have also reduced the size to 41.91mm x 19.05mm. The filter capacitor is optional since the standard cart will have one immediately next to the power pin of the original mask ROM. The pull up resistor is required unfortunately. Many IC's now-a-days have internal pull-up or down resistors so that pins can be left open or hanging, but the datasheet does not say anything about pull up resistors and this is not a pin we can leave to self-oscillate!

Thursday, February 6, 2014

The Nintedno Gameboy Pocket's CPU pinout

I finally got around to probing the pins on the gameboy pocket's CPU and made a diagram. The CPU is not the same as the CPU inside of the original gameboy or the super gameboy SNES cartridge. When I get the chance, I will draw a schematic of the entire gameboy pocket.

Pinout photo direct link (huge): http://imageshack.com/a/img835/3936/nyix.png

  1.  A0
  2.  A1
  3.  A2
  4.  A3
  5.  A4
  6.  A5
  7.  A6
  8.  A7
  9.  A8
  10.  A9
  11.  A10
  12.  A11
  13.  A12
  14.  A13
  15.  A14
  16.  A15
  17.  D0
  18.  D1
  19.  D2
  20.  D3
  21.  D4
  22.  D5
  23.  D6
  24.  D7
  25.  /RES
  26.  VIN
  27.  SO1
  28.  SO2
  29.  MD7
  30.  MD6
  31.  MD5
  32.  GND
  33.  MD4
  34.  MD3
  35.  MD2
  36.  MD1
  37.  MD0
  38.  SOUT
  39.  SCK
  40.  SIN
  41.  CPG
  42.  CPL
  43.  ST
  44.  LD0
  45.  LD1
  46.  CP
  47.  FR
  48.  S
  49.  MA0
  50.  MA1
  51.  MA2
  52.  MA3
  53.  VCC
  54.  MA4
  55.  MA5
  56.  MA6
  57.  MA7
  58.  MA12
  59.  /MCS
  60.  MA10
  61.  /MRD
  62.  MA11
  63.  MA9
  64.  MA8
  65.  /MWR
  66.  CK2
  67.  CK1
  68.  P15
  69.  P14
  70.  P13
  71.  P12
  72.  GND
  73.  P11
  74.  P10
  75.  GND
  76.  GND
  77.  CLOCK-OUT
  78.   /WR
  79.   /RD
  80.   /CS

Some notes:

  • The naming convention that I followed is directly from the silkscreen on the gameboy pocket itself. 
  • It would seem that the gameboy pocket's CPU has the video RAM built-in as opposed to being on the PCB since the vram buses are all hanging open. Because of this, rewiring a DMG-01's CPU or a Super Gameboy CPU to the gameboy pocket is not immediately possible. 
  •  The DMG and SGB CPU's have two pins named T1 and T2 which are tied to ground. I believe that pins 75 and 76 of the MGBCPU  are T1 and T2 respectively, but only because of their placement near the clock output. 
  • The "/" means low-enable
  • For more information what some of the pins do, see the photo near the top. Or comment below.