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Do you feel a separate "Reproduction carts" board/forum would be beneficial?
Yes 71%  71%  [ 80 ]
No 8%  8%  [ 9 ]
I don't care either way 16%  16%  [ 18 ]
Other (please explain in a follow-up post) 5%  5%  [ 6 ]
Total votes : 113
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 22, 2013 8:27 pm 
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oh it's cool, i learned a long time ago not to take internet comments personally. it's far too easy to misinterpret their meaning. i simply saw it as an example of my point about attitudes towards novices. i work in IT and know how disgustingly hostile some people can be to those without the same knowledge. no sour feelings :)


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 23, 2013 12:14 am 
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@revfds -- I am in full/complete agreement with you, especially WRT the "pinout conversion" documents/etc. scattered all over the place and their complete/total unreliability.

Back when the power pak wasn't released, I had no problem following those pinout conversions. Also, I was 15/16 ish, and I'm definitely not an "hardware guy".
Quote:
Personally, i learn by doing

My point is that, since the PowerPak and other similar flashcarts are out, there is NO POINT in learning how to mod NES / SNES carts, because there is no reason for doing so. So the "I just want to learn" argument is plain false.

That would be like learning how to use a typewriter in 2013 when you could just use a compuer to type your letters.

The only valid reason I see why you'll learn to mod carts is if you want to sell them, because you can't sell a powerpak as game.

Quote:
And yes, unfortunately this will cause me to "destroy" games. I'm being as good about it as i can.

There is plenty of horrible sport games to destroy so this is not a problem. When you start to destroy MMC5 games or Super FX games for the SNES then yes that becomes a problem.
However the destruction of carts is not a problem for me, it's not the reason why I oppose repros, as in general they will put a better game in place of a bad game (else they wouldn't be doing this in the 1st place).


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 23, 2013 5:48 am 
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Bregalad wrote:
My point is that, since the PowerPak and other similar flashcarts are out, there is NO POINT in learning how to mod NES / SNES carts

A lot of clones can't run PowerPak, especially those sold in countries where an authentic NTSC NES and/or PAL NES is hard to get. Some mappers are still unsupported, especially those used by productions with 1 MB or larger PRG ROM.


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 23, 2013 6:26 am 
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1) Noone is going to make games that requires > 1MB of storage
2) I agree about clones, so people from Russia or other countries where clones are more common than the real thing have an excuse. However, people making repros are not all from such countries.


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 23, 2013 6:41 am 
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Even then, I'm sure an official NES is much cheaper than an eprom programmer over all.


Last edited by 3gengames on Fri Aug 23, 2013 1:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 23, 2013 7:10 am 
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The Everdrive N8 works on clones, AFAIK.


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 23, 2013 7:54 am 
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Trying to refrain from making a Herman's Hermits joke:
Bregalad wrote:
1) Noone is going to make games that requires > 1MB of storage

Action 52 has 1.5 MiB PRG ROM and 512 KiB CHR ROM. Action 53 initially comes in 512 KiB volumes, but once all volumes are assembled, the final version is expected to have 2 MiB PRG ROM and 32 KiB CHR RAM. But I'll grant that most multicart mappers are one-offs and thus harder to find a donor for than games sharing a mapper with some common donor.

3gen: Even if you have an official PAL NES or NTSC NES, it won't always run software meant for the other TV system. Demoscene productions, for instance, tend to need a PAL NES. One would need to either buy two NES consoles or buy a clone supporting the appropriate TV system.

tokumaru: EverDrive N8 solves the clone problem but has the same 512 KiB limit as PowerPak. (Interestingly enough it claims to support the Action 53 mapper #28 but not the Action 52/Cheetahmen II mapper #228, despite Cheetahmen II being small enough.)


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 23, 2013 8:55 pm 
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Yes, I think this is a good idea.

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PostPosted: Sat Aug 24, 2013 2:17 pm 
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Having been out of town, and now having read this thread, I think the right solution is 1- calling the section as for "EE newbies" by parallel to the programming newbies forum and 2- a sticky in that forum to the effect of 'would they pretty please buy a powerpak or everdrive or invitenes or inl board instead of building a reproduction from old stock'


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 24, 2013 6:38 pm 
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Do you feel a separate "Reproduction carts" board/forum would be beneficial?
I wouldn't use the term "Repro" there, that would actually sound like a platform explicitely for pirate carts. Better call it "Homebrew Cartridge Hardware" or the like. From what I've seen the "repro" questions are about things like how to connect an eprom to an address decoder, or a sram with battery. That isn't any secret or illegal information, if somebody wants to learn about hardware then it's just fine. That approach can be much more interesting than buying a flashcart.

In worst case it will end up with a messy thread that doesn't solve the problem. Ideally this may end up with useful schematics that could be also used by other people; be it for illegal repros, for legit homebrew games, or just for learning about electronics. And well, if somebody is using that knowledge to create & sell mass-produced pirate-carts then the copyright holder or possibly fooled customers may jump in, but that's a different thing (as long as the repros aren't sold by nesdev.com).

I've noticed that the "repro" question is asked twice, once for NES, and once for SNES:
NES Hardware and Flash Equipment forum: viewforum.php?f=9
SNESdev forum: viewforum.php?f=12
I think that should be kept separated!

For NES, the current "NES Hardware and Flash Equipment" board looks just fine to me.
It is marked "Discuss hardware-related topics, such as development cartridges, CopyNES, PowerPak, EPROMs, or whatever."
Looks like the right place to me for people who want to make, modify, or totally destroy cartridges.
If necessary you could make some important dev-cart threads sticky (in case they get lost among the repro hardware hacks).

And for SNES, there isn't too much activity in that board. I don't think that it's necessary to add a separate SNES Cartridge board there at the moment.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 26, 2013 9:35 pm 
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I want to help people out in learning electronics.
I don't want people to feel ashamed for asking simple electronics questions, but kind of wish people would back out a bit and see the overall view instead of demanding an answer to a specific goal, getting that answer, then just disappearing (made their money or whatever).

On the SNES the address mapping thing is often fun to work through, because it's just combinatorial logic and we can talk in simple terms of digital logic gates and simplifying equations to reduce or substitute parts, and can talk about the hardware, and talk about simple electronics that work at low, forgiving speeds.

But I cringe about MacGyver questions where it's how do I connect this exact part to this exact not-quite-fitting part on this exact board that is missing a trace for A15... and then throw in an oh btw I can't solder. I'm not specifically pointing a finger at anyone. Really I'm not, it's just a contrived example.

So a separate forum for homebrew carts, or remix carts, transplant carts, or whatever one would call them, would be welcome to cut down on repeat questions, to try and throw a sticky in there for "how to get started" and "reference information".

Then the development section can become more focused again on the software side of things, or discoveries about the hardware, etc.


I completely disagree about the precept that there's flash carts out there, go buy them-- I hate that attitude, and hate how much they cost, and how it's kind of a grey market. Please, please do tear apart your childhood toys responsibly to see how they work. That is learning by doing.


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 29, 2013 10:57 am 
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I think it would be great to get these threads into their own section. I don't know much about hardware, and quite little about specific boards, so I really can't contribute to these discussions. I usually browse through everything except the hardware and emulation sections, and I still run into a lot of these threads. Sectioning them off would be great.

It's not like it makes me super mad to see them; my emotional sine wave is not of great enough amplitude. I'll just continue to ignore them if nothing else.


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 31, 2013 12:40 pm 
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Creating a section for repros is something I've thought much about in the past. I've got mixed feelings on it.. It's relevant enough that I wouldn't want to complain about it. In some cases it's quite interesting. But in my mind it just doesn't fit under the term 'development'. Whether it's putting an old game onto a cartridge, or cloning old mappers (or the CPU/PPU for that matter), to me it seems more a way of experiencing history by reenacting it. Can it be educational & fun & worthwhile - absolutely. Is it development - I'd argue that it's not. I'm not trying to be overly pretentious about it, I'm sure semantically that can be argued in all sorts of directions, but I think it's a different animal. Much like when I do cover songs in a tracker, no matter how many technical tricks are involved with adapting it to the NES, I wouldn't call it songwriting.

That being said, I'm voting yes because it would make the other forums more interesting to read. IIRC, I'm pretty sure that's why the NESemdev section came about - all those damn ass posts about emulator programming were going to clog up the NES programming section. :) I don't normally read NESemdev either, there's some brilliant stuff in there, but 95% of the time it's just not what I'm looking for.


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 10, 2013 8:18 pm 
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This thread makes me want to vote no.

viewtopic.php?f=9&t=10480

Now I"m ok with people asking occasional hardware questions, but can we make it an unwritten rule that the person has to at least do other stuff on the forum and not just join to ask about pirating games? (Say if someone has 200 posts, all related to nesdev...then its fine. But when someone just comes in here for pirating games it's not. Rule enforced at mod's discretion (Sorry Tepples) )


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 10, 2013 11:27 pm 
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Jeroen wrote:
This thread makes me want to vote no.

viewtopic.php?f=9&t=10480

Now I"m ok with people asking occasional hardware questions, but can we make it an unwritten rule that the person has to at least do other stuff on the forum and not just join to ask about pirating games? (Say if someone has 200 posts, all related to nesdev...then its fine. But when someone just comes in here for pirating games it's not. Rule enforced at mod's discretion (Sorry Tepples) )


That thread/user proved to me that it doesn't even matter. I intentionally ignored that ridiculousness only to receive two PM's asking for explicit detail on how to complete their repro. There is no avoiding the absurdity. Somehow a crazy ass story of how you broke something that is coincidentally also your hobby to create is supposed to motivate us to write you a detailed instruction on how to make yet another repro. Unfortunately the few give a bad rap for those who are more tactful.

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