Jump to content

Photo

My 2600 cart dumper


39 replies to this topic

#26 alex_79 OFFLINE  

alex_79

    Moonsweeper

  • Topic Starter
  • 372 posts
  • Location:Italy

Posted Mon Sep 19, 2011 3:08 PM

The reason I bring it up is that your dumper could be modified in a simmular way were the software automaticly flip flops between its ROM and the cartrage.


That would be possible, although designing such a circuit it's beyond my basic skills. It would be a bankswitching logic just like those used in games, switching between the software eprom and the cart instead of two different banks of the same rom. To work with the dumper it would need a couple of features:

1 - The "hotspot" address must not be in cart space, because the dumper needs to read the entire cart address range
2 - The hotspot must not interfere with those used by other bankswitch methods that use TIA or RIOT addresses (such as "3F" used in Tigervision carts).
3 - The dumper rom must always be selected when powering the console.


A less elegant but simplier way would be to use a pin of a controller port as a select line and connect it to the dumper through a cable. Once connected to a controller port, you can have also the rs232 adapter and connector built into the dumper itself. The software already implemets a select line on an unused pin of the RIOT chip, to be used in case someone want to install the dumper inside a console (see the first post). Using a controller port would allow the auto-switching even with an external device.
I haven't checked yet, but I think that it would be quite easy to modify the software to support this feature.
This is the simple circuit I intended to use when I added the auto-select function in the software. It uses a 74HCT00 (quad NAND gates). I haven't tested it.
autoselect.png
Note that it only uses 3 of the NAND gates. There's another one on a 74HCT00 and it can be used to invert the /CE signal in case you use a second cart programmed with the dumper software instead of an eprom built into the device itself.

Edited by alex_79, Mon Sep 19, 2011 3:09 PM.


#27 player 0ne OFFLINE  

player 0ne

    Chopper Commander

  • 160 posts
  • apprentice repair tech
  • Location:usa

Posted Mon Sep 19, 2011 7:09 PM

is there any info in the compumate that this cool device can get? can a compumate be "dumped"?

if i get you a cart port can you make another one? i think people would pay for this just cause its pretty cool and yet just beyond some people's skills.

#28 alex_79 OFFLINE  

alex_79

    Moonsweeper

  • Topic Starter
  • 372 posts
  • Location:Italy

Posted Tue Sep 20, 2011 11:50 AM

is there any info in the compumate that this cool device can get? can a compumate be "dumped"?

The compumate can be dumped (the PAL version actually has already been dumped and can be emulated in z26). Since it uses the joystick ports for its bankswitching, extra hardware/software is required to dump it. (check this post).


if i get you a cart port can you make another one? i think people would pay for this just cause its pretty cool and yet just beyond some people's skills.

This was just intended as a DIY project. I posted the software rom and some examples of circuits for the switches. One can build it using inexpensive parts, but quite some work is required to do all the connections. Anyway, it's not required to build the dumper and switch circuit like I did; a programmable cart (Harmony, Supercharger, etc) and an external switch (either custom built or one of the various 2600 cart selectors) can be used instead. As a last resort, you can just swap the carts during the ready screen, before the data transfer starts and without needing any extra hardware (It works for me, but you do that at your own risk!).

I have not the experience, tools and time to offer this (or any other) product for sale. My soldering skills are not all that good and I used a cheap eprom programmer which is probably unreliable. It's fine as long as I build one for me (I can fix it if a wire gets disconnected because of a bad solder joint or I can re-burn the eprom if it fails after a few months), but I'd want it to have at least a minimum quality standard if I had to build this for someone else. The software isn't even properly tested and could very well be buggy.

You could ask in the hardware forum if someone with the right tools and experience can build one for you. If someone really wants to produce and sell more than a couple of units, he should design and make some boards because it's just impractical and time consuming having to cut traces and solder jumpers on a recycled cart board and wiring all the cart slot pins and switches. Honestly, I don't think there would be enough interest in a cart dumper to justify the money and efforts. Even in that case, there are better options available as I mentioned in previous posts.

#29 player 0ne OFFLINE  

player 0ne

    Chopper Commander

  • 160 posts
  • apprentice repair tech
  • Location:usa

Posted Tue Sep 20, 2011 12:14 PM

sorry if im thinking outloud in the forum. im just intriqued by your project. I hope to gather the parts and skills to build it myself. thanks for your help.

#30 player 0ne OFFLINE  

player 0ne

    Chopper Commander

  • 160 posts
  • apprentice repair tech
  • Location:usa

Posted Tue Sep 20, 2011 12:15 PM

I think it would be helpful if you had a good collection of games and a friend who also had an atari. share games with them one at a time.

Also i want to make one to copy a teleterm2600 cart and play around with communicating with 2 2600s. I know its dumb. jeez, its 30yo hardware. It is still fun to think about.

#31 Mitch OFFLINE  

Mitch

    Quadrunner

  • 6,057 posts
  • 7800 Guy
  • Location:Southern California, USA

Posted Tue Sep 20, 2011 1:05 PM


is there any info in the compumate that this cool device can get? can a compumate be "dumped"?

The compumate can be dumped (the PAL version actually has already been dumped and can be emulated in z26). Since it uses the joystick ports for its bankswitching, extra hardware/software is required to dump it. (check this post).


The NTSC version has been dumped already as well.

Mitch

#32 alex_79 OFFLINE  

alex_79

    Moonsweeper

  • Topic Starter
  • 372 posts
  • Location:Italy

Posted Tue Sep 20, 2011 5:28 PM

I think it would be helpful if you had a good collection of games and a friend who also had an atari. share games with them one at a time.

Also i want to make one to copy a teleterm2600 cart and play around with communicating with 2 2600s. I know its dumb. jeez, its 30yo hardware. It is still fun to think about.

The dumper cannot be used to play a rom. It can just send the binary data to a PC. It's only useful if you have a cart that has not yet been dumped, like a prototype. Almost all known games have already been dumped and the roms can be found online, and that's why most people don't care about a 2600 cart dumper. To play the rom on real hardware you must use a programmable cart (Harmony, Cuttle Cart, Kroko Cart, Supercharger, etc) or an eprom cart.


The NTSC version has been dumped already as well.

Didn't know about that. Thanks!

Edited by alex_79, Tue Sep 20, 2011 5:29 PM.


#33 player 0ne OFFLINE  

player 0ne

    Chopper Commander

  • 160 posts
  • apprentice repair tech
  • Location:usa

Posted Wed Sep 21, 2011 10:35 AM

thanks alex. its good to have somewhere like this to learn this stuff. couldnt find well organized information of this kind.

ive read about people modifying old carts to play other games. havent been able to find decisive info on that yet. seems like everything i would want to know if buried in this forum somewhere.

#34 Madhatter OFFLINE  

Madhatter

    Space Invader

  • 21 posts
  • Location:Quilpué, CHILE

Posted Sat Oct 8, 2011 12:53 PM

Hi Alex_79, I re- draw your Dumper circuit, please let me know if this correct:

Posted Image

I'm going to build it soon...

#35 esplonky OFFLINE  

esplonky

    Moonsweeper

  • 436 posts
  • Kinetic, Not synthetic.
  • Location:Canyon Lake, TX

Posted Sat Oct 8, 2011 6:06 PM

these devices should be sole on the AAstore

#36 alex_79 OFFLINE  

alex_79

    Moonsweeper

  • Topic Starter
  • 372 posts
  • Location:Italy

Posted Sun Oct 9, 2011 3:22 AM

Hi Alex_79, I re- draw your Dumper circuit, please let me know if this correct:


That's correct. If you don't need to dump built-in games, you can omit the DPDT switch 1 and leave pin 24 disconnected (or grounded).

P.S. There's some really great stuff in your website! Someday I will try to build that NES pad adapter. That Atari Video Cartridge that loads games from VHS and DVD is amazing!

#37 solidcorp OFFLINE  

solidcorp

    Moonsweeper

  • 439 posts
  • Location:Wheaton Illinois

Posted Thu Oct 20, 2011 7:14 PM

The cartridge I designed for Star Castle can handle up to 64K ROMS in 16 banks of 4k. Since Star Castle is only an 8K game in keeping with the technology on the market in 1981 I had two extra address output lines free. In the Star Castle cartridge I use a PLD (GAL22V10) to watch the cartridge ROM address lines and when certain addresses come up, internal operations are triggered just like other bank switching themes. If you can latch extra address lines for larger EPROMS, you can drive LEDs... and pretty much anything else.

#38 CPUWIZ OFFLINE  

CPUWIZ

    Rarity 11

  • 27,732 posts
  • Cartridge Recycler
  • Location:SoCal

Posted Thu Oct 20, 2011 7:21 PM

The cartridge I designed for Star Castle can handle up to 64K ROMS in 16 banks of 4k. Since Star Castle is only an 8K game in keeping with the technology on the market in 1981 I had two extra address output lines free. In the Star Castle cartridge I use a PLD (GAL22V10) to watch the cartridge ROM address lines and when certain addresses come up, internal operations are triggered just like other bank switching themes. If you can latch extra address lines for larger EPROMS, you can drive LEDs... and pretty much anything else.


Given you stay within the limits of your available current, yes.

#39 solidcorp OFFLINE  

solidcorp

    Moonsweeper

  • 439 posts
  • Location:Wheaton Illinois

Posted Thu Oct 20, 2011 8:03 PM

Of course.

#40 alex_79 OFFLINE  

alex_79

    Moonsweeper

  • Topic Starter
  • 372 posts
  • Location:Italy

Posted Tue Nov 1, 2011 5:11 PM

User Madhatter built the dumper and added an article on his website (It's well worth visiting it. Some great Atari-related projects in there!). The page also contains a revised version of the schematics shown in post #34: there was an error due to a different pin numbering of the cart connector. The page is in spanish, so use google translator or similar if you don't know the language.
Thanks for the improved switch circuit! :thumbsup: I added it to the first post.




0 user(s) are browsing this forum

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users