Category Archives: Modification

Modification

Sega Pico Flash Cart / Adapter v2

After 2,5 years, TeamEurope updated their Sega Pico Flash Cart / Adapter to v2. Previously, I either modified “Assembled in Mexico” Pico cartridges or used the first version of the flash cart / adapter. Version 2 comes with some new features (e.g., added switches for ROM sizes and memory banks) and is split into two PCBs: FULL and REPRO. Additionally, they have released design files for the back covers.

Sega Pico flash cart / adapter v2 kits and back covers
Sega Pico flash cart / adapter v2 kits and back covers
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Philips CDI450 32 KB NVRAM Upgrade

In this article, I’ll upgrade a Philips CDI450 with 32 KB NVRAM. You’ll find all information that is needed to modify the system ROM and the mainboard. If this sounds familiar – yes, it does: In 2019, I explored the possibility to upgrade a CDI470. Even though patching the system ROM failed back then, the experiment was still a success. The final solution to access 32 KB NVRAM was to use the ROM of a 490. As it turned out later, this was also Philips’ solution for the 470/85 model, but that is a topic for another article.

With the 450 (and all other top-loading players with Roboco mainboard) it is a bit different: It’s a low-cost model with 8 KB NVRAM only. The mainboard was neither prepared for a bigger NVRAM solution nor is there a similar advanced model that I could borrow the system ROM from. This time, a ROM patch must succeed.

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Component Lists

This is an overview of the lists of capacitors and other components that I had to create in order to repair or modify my devices. Currently, all of them are already featured in my repair articles, but I will add further lists that are not featured yet or are a work in progress.

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Neo Geo CD Controller Pro Ball Top

When I made my MV2FS ready for home-use, I also added a ball top to my Neo Geo CD Controller Pro. This was supposed to be handled in an article in 2018, but it somehow got lost. Anyways, here it is:

The SNK Neo Geo CD Controller Pro (aka kidney bean stick) doesn’t have a regular ball top like the arcade stick. Instead, it has an indented head, probably to rest your thumb on.

SNK Neo Geo CD Controller Pro
SNK Neo Geo CD Controller Pro
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Philips CDI660 Service Shell

For quite some time, I was puzzled why my CDI660 was stuck in a reset loop after I inserted the test/dummy plug into Input 1. I expected it to boot into the Service Shell, like most other CD-i players. My solution so far was to use a 490 system ROM in the 660 whenever I needed the Service Shell (the compatibility and also the error were discovered during this experiment). However, this wasn’t a very practical approach because I had to open up the player and dig out the system ROM from underneath the DVC every time.

When CD-i Emulator with -testplug option showed the same behaviour, CD-i Fan figured out what is causing this error: The Service Shell module sv is missing from the 660/670 system ROM.
In this article, I will show you a simple ROM patch to enable the Service Shell for the CDI660.

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Texas Instruments TI-82 Serial Link on Windows 10

In the early to mid-90s, the Texas Instruments Ti-82 Graphics Calculator (or Graphing Calculator) was introduced and became a requirement in some high schools. I never had the official serial link cable to connect mine to a PC, but it came with a calculator-to-calculator link cable. That cable was very popular during math lessons for trading pictures, programs and games. We had several games back then, but I only remember one game, a Breakout clone programmed in TI-BASIC that was painfully slow.

I still have this calculator, but it was sitting in a drawer for more than 20 years. In this article, I will bring it back to life and connect it to a modern Windows 10 PC to install a Breakout clone or something better on it.

Texas Instruments Ti-82 Graphics Calculator
Texas Instruments Ti-82 Graphics Calculator
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Philips CDI605 RGB SCART Adapter

The second generation professional and authoring CD-i players of the Philips CDI60x series feature a DE-9 RGB port. To improve the video quality of my CDI605T/20 and also to prepare for future experiments, I built a prototype RGB SCART adapter. The needed pinout is documented in the 605 and 605T user manuals on ICDIA.

Philips CDI605 RGB SCART adapter - prototype
Philips CDI605 RGB SCART adapter – prototype

After the first tests were successful, I made this schematic for an adapter with a SCART socket (output) for both RGB video and audio:

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Cuckoo CRP-N0681F Battery Replacement

The Cuckoo CRP-N0681F rice cooker doesn’t run Doom (yet; see below), but it can talk, sing and chuff like a steam locomotive. It also prepares all kinds of rice. One day, the display went blank. The next time I plugged it back in, it greeted me in Korean and wanted me to set the clock. It seemed that the internal battery had died and the user manual agreed with that:

About Lithium battery
– This product contains lithium battery for improving blackout
compensation and time. Lithium battery lasts 3 years.
– When current time is not displayed on the screen, it means the battery is exhausted. It should be replaced.

Unfortunately, that’s all what the manual had to say about this topic. A quick search on the internet didn’t reveal any clues about the battery replacement, so I opened it up to have a look inside.

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Capcom CPS2 Digital AV Interface Firmware v0.91

Last weekend, marqs released firmware v0.91 for the CPS2 Digital AV Interface. The new firmware finally has an OSD implemented and brings back the scanlines. Further features include TX mode, quad stereo output and two additional VESA resolutions (1280×1024 and 1600×1200). You can find all functions and some explanations among the OSD menu structure and the sample pictures below.

CPS2 Digital AV Interface Firmware v0.91
CPS2 Digital AV Interface Firmware v0.91

Updating the firmware takes less than a minute and is basically the same procedure as updating an OSSC via JTAG. I’ve explained the procedure in this article.

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Philips CDI490 RGB SCART Modification

It has been on my table for a while to figure out a working Philips CDI490 RGB SCART modification. The topic caught my interest when it came up in the community on The world of CD-i last year. Back then, I thought it would be quite easy because the small 470 and 490 CD-i players share a certain mainboard (Mono IV) with their big brothers 660/00, 220/80 and 210/60. There are only some components missing that could be figured out by looking at the service manuals.

However, I couldn’t try it out back then because I didn’t have a working 470 or 490. I focused on repairing my 470 first and then adding a PAL/NTSC switch. Eventually, I bought the needed components and two broken 490s to experiment with.

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