t64 Resurrection

Includes but not limited to: SNES, Genesis, Sega CD, PlayStation 1, Nintendo 64, Dreamcast, Game Gear and I guess the Virtual Boy.

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kibble
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Re: t64 Resurrection

Post by kibble » Thu Mar 24, 2011 5:16 pm

blaze3927 wrote:^^as for first problem i have used kynar to relocate 20+ boards and never had any of those sort of issues, any continuity issues on the actual 64 mobo?
then again issues with kynar are not unheard of

That pcb looks V nice, any chance you could please upload the .brd file or jpeg?
i wanna make one :mrgreen:
I don't *think* there's any continuity issues and some of the games work fine, which is what has me dumbfounded. I tested and tested for continuity and it all seems ok. I even thought it may have been crosstalk so I shielded the wires some but still nothing. I'll mess with it more when I get a chance. Another thing I can think of is possibly power distribution issues. Maybe I'll try putting a couple caps on that board or something.

I'll post up the file when I get back home. I think the image was kinda big cause I exported it at 1200 pix/inch, but I'll have to look at it.
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Mario
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Re: t64 Resurrection

Post by Mario » Thu Mar 24, 2011 11:03 pm

You sure you're not missing any pins? I'm sure you checked for that, but some games use more or different pins than others, causing some to work but not others if you're missing a wire or two. Cold joints?
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kibble
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Re: t64 Resurrection

Post by kibble » Thu Mar 24, 2011 11:49 pm

Mario wrote:You sure you're not missing any pins? I'm sure you checked for that, but some games use more or different pins than others, causing some to work but not others if you're missing a wire or two. Cold joints?
I'm pretty certain that I used all the pins that are needed as well as all grounds and 3.3V pins. The only pins I ignored were those for the video and audio lines and any other unused pins. One thing I didn't do that just hit me was check for resistance on the lines... I'll have to do that and see if something shows up. I was pretty tired the day that I worked on that and it was late at night so I kinda gave up after a while of not getting other games to work.
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lucidPerspective
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Re: t64 Resurrection

Post by lucidPerspective » Sat Mar 26, 2011 2:14 am

Would it be worth trying it again with thicker wire? I read that if you used really thin wire, it worked, but you needed to keep the length of the wires as short as possible otherwise there would be glitches (like what your experiencing) :?
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kibble
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Re: t64 Resurrection

Post by kibble » Mon Mar 28, 2011 3:53 am

I worked on this again for a few hours tonight (it's now 2:10AM here) and I just wanna punch some babies... 400 babies, to be exact. I cannot get the frickin' thing to work!!! Mario Kart still works just fine but I cannot get some other games to work. I just don't know what's so special about the Mario Kart cart. And again; the other carts work just fine on unmodified N64's....

I went through several steps tonight to troubleshoot:

Checked continuity and resistance of all the connections between the chips inside the carts and the RCP. Everything seems just fine.

Tried more grounding/more 3.3V power. Nothing.

Checked waveforms on all data lines with my oscilloscope and I noticed some slight differences between my modded board and a stock board, but I don't know what's causing the differences.

Out of desperation, and going on a hunch, I swapped out the RCP with the one that I removed from the first board I had removed parts from. Still same issue. Yes, you read right, I swapped it out... pics below.

Completely removed all kynar wiring and replaced with regular ATA type wire.... no dice, but Mario Kart still works..... :?

Thinking that maybe it was a power issue, I soldered the original power connector and power switch back on so that I could try it out with the original power supply instead of batteries. No difference.

In the process of doing all this, I managed to accidentally completely stick my soldering iron in my bottle of liquid flux.... and later I ended up accidentally knocking over my bottle of flux and getting it on my workbench and on some parts so now I have a really sticky mess to clean...

There's only a few possibilities left as far as I can think;
-My adapter has some issue with it that I haven't yet found (which is why I'm holding off on posting the file or pic for it until I can get it sorted out.)
-There's something wrong with one or more traces between the cart connector pads and the RCP on the board I'm using.
-There's a physical problem in the cart connector I'm using that's not readily apparent
-The N64 gods hate me and won't let me get anything working properly... They say; "Nay! Thou shall not make thy portable!"

When I get another chance, I'm going to try my adapter board on a completely unmodified n64 board and just solder it to the junctions without removing the lower connector of the board. If that works, I'll be able to completely rule out problems with my cart connector board.

Oh, and before anyone says anything about the video chip missing, that's not part of the issue, but more on that later. :wink:

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Re: t64 Resurrection

Post by Electric Rain » Mon Mar 28, 2011 7:20 pm

I see the problem. The Flux Capacitor is missing. Duh. :roll:
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budnespid
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Re: t64 Resurrection

Post by budnespid » Mon Mar 28, 2011 8:22 pm

You need more wires. Some games use some pins, some games don't.

This: http://forums.modretro.com/viewtopic.ph ... s+of+games" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; may help you understand what I'm talking about.

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kibble
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Re: t64 Resurrection

Post by kibble » Mon Mar 28, 2011 11:05 pm

Oh, trust me, I've been all over which pins are used and which aren't. All the same pins are used in the three cartridges I'm using for testing at the moment. However, today I did come across something interesting. Mario Kart works just fine and you can start playing it etc. Once you complete a GP the game immediately crashes before going into the whole awards ceremony sequence which leads me to believe that the issue might lie somewhere in the EEPROM portion of the wiring. Maybe the two other games I'm testing with, Tetrisphere and SM64, try to access the EEPROM soon after the n64 reads the first chunks of data from ROM and upon not being able to, doesn't even start the game. If something is wrong with the wiring in this area, it could explain why I was able to get both games working at one point after messing with it, but now I'm having trouble, although I've checked and double checked these areas and have found nothing that would seem like an obvious problem. Soooo frustrating...

Edit:

O.......M.......F.......G..... Figured out the problem.....

It was a combination of two issues and there was nothing wrong with the EEPROM lines. I even thought that maybe there was too much crosstalk on the 1.6MHz line so I wrapped a gnd around it, but it turns out that wasn't the case. For one, not enough grounds. Mario Kart didn't mind it too much, until it got to the part where it had to write to the EEPROM, then apparently it just wasn't getting enough power, which caused the crash. To test this theory, after I added the grounds I played another round of GP all the way to the end and this time it didn't crash. SM64 wanted at least one more ground in the middle of the board and then it worked fine. Tetrisphere turned out to be the greedy a-hole of the bunch and would refuse to work until I added another set of two grounds on the opposite side of the board. (pics below). The second part of the problem is that apparently the contacts in the cart slot must be dirty and don't make proper contact with the edge of the carts even though I've tried to clean them several times, (which could also explain part of the power starvation.) I have to insert/remove/insert/remove some games several times before they'll work properly. extremeG was a really good example of this as the text characters at the beginning of the game were showing up corrupt on screen until I did the insert/remove routine several times.

So what did I learn from all this?

1- Don't skimp on the GND's. Even though I thought having the GND go all around the board would suffice, apparently, some carts want them in specific spots, probably due to differences in the chips used in them.
2- No matter how clean the edge connectors of your carts are, they're still at the mercy of the cart slot's contacts, even if they look clean too.
3- I suck BAAAAD at Mario Kart now......

Edit 2:

I know I said that I had tried more grounding in a previous post, but that was using alligator clips/wires. It seems it didn't like the length and so that's why those didn't work either and threw me off about the whole grounding issue, which I didn't revisit until I tried the whole 1.6MHz "shielding" deal and suddenly SM64 worked because of that extra GND.

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Tchay
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Re: t64 Resurrection

Post by Tchay » Tue Mar 29, 2011 3:44 am

Let me just say that it is so fun to read your posts Kibble :lol:

I literally laughed out loud at some of the stuff you said.

Glad you fixed the problem.

I'll be looking forward to the next fiasco that will inevitably happen :twisted:
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Re: t64 Resurrection

Post by Snow_Cat » Tue Mar 29, 2011 2:55 pm

^ -n-^ I wonder if it was some sort of ground loop issue.
^ ^ ^^ Mew, it works. So what happened with that video chip?

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kibble
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Re: t64 Resurrection

Post by kibble » Tue Mar 29, 2011 4:30 pm

Tchay wrote:I'll be looking forward to the next fiasco that will inevitably happen :twisted:
Sigh... maybe the next one won't take me so long to figure out. The N64 is a quirky little beast.
Snow_Cat wrote:So what happened with that video chip?
All will be revealed in due time. *cue the mystical music*
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Re: t64 Resurrection

Post by Triton » Tue Mar 29, 2011 4:46 pm

kibble wrote:
Tchay wrote:I'll be looking forward to the next fiasco that will inevitably happen :twisted:
Sigh... maybe the next one won't take me so long to figure out. The N64 is a quirky little beast.
Snow_Cat wrote:So what happened with that video chip?
All will be revealed in due time. *cue the mystical music*
we can break it down in terms of what this project is. Its a redesign of the n64 in a smaller more portable friendly form factor. so its quite literally process of elimination, you wont need the video chip because you're going to be driving a digital LCD using something else. am I fairly close to the mark on that? :lol:

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Re: t64 Resurrection

Post by Snow_Cat » Tue Mar 29, 2011 6:44 pm

kibble wrote:All will be revealed in due time. *cue the mystical music*
^ ^ ^ ^Meow.
(edit: X-files theme, hosted by YouTube.com)
Last edited by Snow_Cat on Tue Mar 29, 2011 7:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: t64 Resurrection

Post by Electric Rain » Tue Mar 29, 2011 7:10 pm

Triton wrote:
kibble wrote:
Tchay wrote:I'll be looking forward to the next fiasco that will inevitably happen :twisted:
Sigh... maybe the next one won't take me so long to figure out. The N64 is a quirky little beast.
Snow_Cat wrote:So what happened with that video chip?
All will be revealed in due time. *cue the mystical music*
we can break it down in terms of what this project is. Its a redesign of the n64 in a smaller more portable friendly form factor. so its quite literally process of elimination, you wont need the video chip because you're going to be driving a digital LCD using something else. am I fairly close to the mark on that? :lol:
This is indeed quite obvious. Sorry kibble. :P

Snow_Cat, what's the song? I approve. ...And since when did these forums support embedding stuff like that? O_o
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Re: t64 Resurrection

Post by hailrazer » Tue Mar 29, 2011 7:13 pm

Electric Rain wrote:
Snow_Cat, what's the song? I approve. .
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My Portable Systems:
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-----Genimini---------Darth64---------Dreamtrooper--------Ncube---------Kamikazi64---N64Boy Advance

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