Flash cart(ridge)


(Scott R) #41

The one concern I have with using a battery cover method would be restrictions to modules like photodiodes.
Nintendo clearly put a lot of thought into the port position at least till they broke tilting games with the GBA SP.


Maybe we should at this stage request a mod split the topic to a subject for expansion ports and modules not to distract further from SPI flash?


#42

A different (replacement) ‘battery’ cover could be mede/used for those (With holes). But when it’s thin IR will pass throught it without problem.

I’m nearly done with the cart PCB design and I’m thinking I want to make a version with the notches at the side removed and put a hole in the middle for a single screw mount :stuck_out_tongue:

Unfortunately a GBA cartridge is wider than the Arduboy itself.


(Scott R) #43

Maybe when this is done we can look into a low res camera module and crappy thermal printer :joy:


#44

We can just hook up a gameboy printer and camera :smiley:


(Stephane C) #45

That would complement that Arduboy Word Processor… who would’ve thought that? LOL
In fact it could even print the Golf Companion Scorecard… sounds good to me :wink:


#46

…and while you’re at it:

:smile:


(Nao) #47

Oh, that is wonderful.
I imagined some simple packages for it.

  • Compared to DIY prototype cartridges, new Flash cartridges will be smaller and thinner.
  • If signal lines appear on the opposite side of the board, a stackable cartridge will be realized.
    (If it’s a small cartridge stack it will not be unrealistic)
    Or it may be better to place a small universal board adjacent to the flash board instead of the pin header and make it a DIY area.
  • It may be a good idea to change the angle of the pin header so that the backpack or daughterboard (universal board=DIY area) can be installed.

#48

That small cart looks awesome :heart_eyes: I also like the idea of a through connector at the back. I’m not sure about the version with a connector at the bottom though. Using a right angled connector will increase height.

I can look at your cart designs for a long time :smiley:

I’ve pretty much finished the design for the cart PCB. just need a few minor tweaks. I made a print out to see how it would look on Arduboy.


#49

That looks a lot better being smaller.


(Simon) #50

I am curious about the stackable flash unit … what pins are available for the second item? What sort of items could you make with those pins? Are the pins used by the flash cartridge itself only used when actually flashing a game or are they unavailable always??


#51

Flash is for the moment only used for flashing games. So the cart doesn’t need to be in all the time (unless the game makes use of the flash ofcourse)

All pins on the extension would be the same on the other end (full pass through) for flexibility. To disable the flash several schemes could be used depending on which pins you would want to use (keep chip select inactive, keep clock at fixed state or keep data all the time low)


#52

Minor update: I’ve added the flash storage format to the first post


#53

I feel so totally spoiled now with the custom bootloader built in flasher menu finished and being able to change games under two seconds.
After using the Left+Up+A+B to get back to the bootloader flasher menu for a while. I realized the reset line is at the expansion connector too. so I’ll do a redesign with a more user friendly reset button on the flashcart. Thinking about a right angled smd type pushbutton.


(Scott R) #54

Will the combo remain active? I was intending on doing hard wired internal flash.


#55

Yes! (combo is compiled in the sketches core) a reset button will be optional for the cart. I want to add it to the design (I just got the idea this afternoon) A homemade Arduboy will most likely already have a reset button or could be easily added. Maybe a reset button could also be added to the backplate.

Cool! Looking forward to see the result. If you can handle very tiny soldering. You may want to get a flash chip in WSON package. the height is much lower then the SOP package I’m using in my prototype.


#56

The reset button is more like a menu button now :smiley:


(Nao) #57

That is a wonderful idea.
I found a small 2 pin tactile button from my parts box and tried it.


(Since it is a prototype, the shape of the cartridge and the size and position of the tactile button are quite different from the ideal)


#58

Nice hack. I’ve changed the PCB design and added tactile button on the back of the PCB so effectively it will also be at the top side and at the left like yours. Initially I wanted to add a right angled one but it would increase the size and height of the total design.

Top layer
flashcart-board-top-layer

Bottom Layer (mirrored view)
flashcart-board-bottom-layer

I’ve put the Eagle project up on GitHub.

I used one of these buttons in the design (button height still to be determined)


(Nao) #59

Oh!! The design of the board is being determined.:smiley:
So, for example, I considered the shape of the cartridge when considering thin buttons (ALPS SKQGAAE010 and SKQGABE010).
Perhaps it would be like that…


#60

That looks awesome! you’re very good at this CAD stuff :+1:

I was thinking of using that raised version (SKQGABE010) with the stem poking through a hole in the case. But I like your idea using the case as part of the button better. Using that SKQGAAE010 button requirres even less height! I’ll see if it fits the rev1.1 PCB version