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#1
Create a EPROM VB Cartridge
Posted on: 2016/1/25 18:45
VB Gamer
Joined 2005/12/1
Brazil
18 Posts
Long Time User (14 Years)
Hello folks,

I'll create a EPROM VB cartridge to play the homebrews on my system.

I'll try to make this example: www.projectvb.com/tech/carts/eprom.html

Since I don't have too much electronic knowledge, I got some doubts and would like some help:

- The "purpose" of using an original cartridge is just to use the original connectors ?

Because on this tutorial (and others I saw), it's necessary to remove the ROM from the original cartridge, and sold wires from EPROM connectors to cartridge pins.

- The only reason to keep the original board of the cartridge is because that we need the "circuit" that talks to the cartridge pins ? (this doubt is actually based on above topic).


- Is it possible to build an "ugly" VB "cartridge", just using the EPROM to connect to the VB hardware, without too much electronic procedures? without the cartridge and it's pins.. I mean...any way to connect the EPROM (after loaded with a valid VB ROM) directly into the videogame ?
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#2
Re: Create a EPROM VB Cartridge
Posted on: 2016/1/26 3:31
PVB Elite
Joined 2003/7/26
USA
1465 Posts
PVBCC EntryCoderContributorSpecial AchievementTop10 PosterHOTY09 EntryLong Time User (15 Years) App Coder20+ Game RatingsPVBCC 2013 Entry
Quote:

brunorog wrote:
- The "purpose" of using an original cartridge is just to use the original connectors?


That is correct.

Quote:
- The only reason to keep the original board of the cartridge is because that we need the "circuit" that talks to the cartridge pins? (this doubt is actually based on above topic).


You don't actually have to use the PCB from the cartridge, unless it has SRAM you'd like to use for the games that can save your progress. However, if you don't have a PCB to replace it with, it will be difficult to keep the two sets of pins from touching each other.

Quote:

- Is it possible to build an "ugly" VB "cartridge", just using the EPROM to connect to the VB hardware, without too much electronic procedures? without the cartridge and it's pins.. I mean...any way to connect the EPROM (after loaded with a valid VB ROM) directly into the videogame?


You might find it very difficult to fit the parts and all the necessary wires inside the VB itself. It would also make it impossible to use a standard cartridge, unless you include some kind of switch to disable the internal ROMs.

Finally, you have the problem of the solderable pins on the VB's cartridge connector being a few mms away from a metal shield and facing the wrong direction, which will make it very difficult to route the wires. You could remove the cartridge connector itself from the mainboard to use its vias, but at that point you're definitely doing more work than just making a cartridge out of an old Mario's Tennis (or whatever).

If you don't want to hand wire the dozens of connections needed, you should learn to use a PCB layout program (such as Eagle or KiCAD), and have some cheap boards made by one of the online board houses (e.g. OSH Park). Or, if you have access to a laser cutter, you can make your own PCBs with blank copper-clad board, "rattle-can" spray paint, vinegar, salt, and over-the-counter 3% Hydrogen Peroxide.

Let us know what you come up with.
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#3
Re: Create a EPROM VB Cartridge
Posted on: 2016/1/27 2:49
VB Gamer
Joined 2005/12/1
Brazil
18 Posts
Long Time User (14 Years)
Hello RunnerPack! Thanks for your help!

After your explanation, I'll definitely not build a "ugly" "frankenstein" cartridge, but one with an original VB Cart basis.

I got some more doubts:

- I guess that on an original cartridge, the pins connector talk to main PCB, that talks with the ROM...on an EPROM self-made cart, the pins connector talks directly to the EPROM (via wires, correct?).
How this schema recognize the battery to save games (of course, on the cartridges that has this circuit on the PCB) ?

- I got curious about the PCB layout program...if I order this kind of service, how exactly will I get away of the "wires job" ?


By the way :) , I'm doing several researchs to find the best EPROM model & recorder & eraser (actually, the expensive stuff will be the recorder and the eraser EPROM machines).
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#4
Re: Create a EPROM VB Cartridge
Posted on: 2016/2/19 2:14
VB Gamer
Joined 2005/12/1
Brazil
18 Posts
Long Time User (14 Years)
Thanks a lot for the help & explanations...but I ended buying a FlashBoy+ (here: http://www.planetvb.com/modules/newbb ... php?topic_id=6377&forum=3 )

Anyway... the topic was very helpful to me, to understand the idea behind "hacking" the Virtual Boy cartridge (and its PCB, battery...)
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