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"Super 8 bit" console is back NES PCB reproduction now better than ever

Jan 21, 2013 at 2:16:18 PM
MarioMania (10)
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(Danny Scalero) < El Ripper >
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You have change the name, Don't get people confused with the SNES add on with the same name

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Jan 21, 2013 at 3:38:28 PM
pegboy (44)
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< Bowser >
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I'd def be interested if you included the RGB PPU and a case in that auction.


Edited: 01/21/2013 at 03:39 PM by pegboy

Jan 22, 2013 at 3:25:19 PM
Sean3614 (72)
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(Sean L) < Meka Chicken >
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Originally posted by: low_budget

Just a quick update:

Last night I tried a 74LS373 and LS139 (like in original NES) in place of the 74HC373 and 74HC139, and the composite PPU video was much better. No more graphics glitches in Super C. The RGB version of the Super 8 will keep the HC chips for PowerPak compatibility.

Known bugs as of 1/12:
Punch Out and Mike Tyson's Punch Out have graphics glitches (with the enemy fighter.)
Super Mario 3 has occasional screen rolling (with composite PPU only)
Composite video is black and white on older CRT TVs (with composite PPU only.)

I tried eliminating the Q1 amplifier in the sync line of the RGB version, and picture was the same. So it doesn't seem necessary but it doesn't hurt either when using RGB.


I will do a video showing the graphics glitches in the only 2 games I know of that have them. Compatibility may not be 100% as I hoped, but not bad.

Do, the issue's affect a version 1.0 board ?
thanks,
Sean


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Edited: 01/22/2013 at 03:26 PM by Sean3614

Jan 23, 2013 at 2:48:17 AM
low_budget (0)

(Nick Fury) < Little Mac >
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 I wasn't aware of the obscure SNES Super 8 accessory from the 90's before naming the system,  so I will not be changing it. I like the name! It's got NES, Super, and number of bits, like Nintendo's first 3 consoles.

The graphics issues with Super Mario 3 and Super C, are present in v1.0 and v1.1, although the graphics glitches are less  in v1.1.

Some games work great with one PPU, while the other has graphics glitches. Some TVs display better than others. Hard to explain, but I'll try:
Super Mario 3 and Super C have occasional graphics glitches with the composite PPU, but not RGB.
The composite PPU displays in black and white on older CRT TVs.

Overall, the compatibility and picture quality is excellent with 98% of games using either PPU. I'd like it to be 100%, but Nintendo never made a system designed to use either PPU so this may be the problem.


Edited: 06/03/2013 at 02:29 PM by low_budget

Feb 9, 2013 at 1:45:53 PM
low_budget (0)

(Nick Fury) < Little Mac >
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I have pretty much stopped R&D on the NES Super 8 for now. I have been focused on building assembled systems and circuit boards.
I hope to eventually release new circuit board designs with improvements, but this will take a while and my time to work on this is pretty limited.




Edited: 06/03/2013 at 02:26 PM by low_budget

Feb 18, 2013 at 7:59:52 PM
Game-Tech-US (53)
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(Jason Rauch) < Eggplant Wizard >
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I fogot to post a reply here when I made my first vid, but since this is NINTEDOAge and not AtariAge I'll start posting on this thread now.
First vid -



Now I have more parts so I can do some more work, like cutting up the case and adding video ouput.
2nd vid -



I'm having some major issues though. The component video output is crap, diagonal wavy moving interference, very hard to capture on camera but it's bad! As seen in the vid i'm using my own rgb to component encoder board so rgb ppu pin 21 sync and cleaning is not the issue. I also do not connect rgb ppu pin 17 to anything. Not had this issue on any of the nes-001 or nes-101 consoles i've used the board on.
The cart is way too close to the back of the case. You've basically rendered %70 of the rear panel useless for mounting jacks etc since it's too close to the cart, there's only like 9mm between the back of the cart and the rear panel. It's really only possible to use the little bit of area towards the outsides. I'm sure you noticed this, but it really sucks and you should see about moving the connector inward.
While you're at it, add a multi out footprint to the back. That can carry rgb, sync, svideo, composite, and stereo. And cords are still plentifull and ppl prefer them. They can get a multiout/scart cord and have an external video encoder, i.e. component, if they want or just feed rgb to a monitor with another scart to ??? conversion cord.
If you have the room for the multi out there will be room for other stuff like a pcb mounted power input jack, another almost essential item.
Moving the cart connector forward would help with dust flap mounting for the cart slot as well, you'll see what I mean in the vid. Still not sure i'll be able to pull it off...
Another idea was to have the front loader's power/reset/led assembly mounted to the front of the pcb so you could notch the front of the case to fit them. I didn't investigate this too much though.

Mar 9, 2013 at 9:17:36 PM
low_budget (0)

(Nick Fury) < Little Mac >
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I haven't updated this post in a while, but I did start working on a new version PCB.

I'm debating if I want to change the wiring of the two 74HC368 chips for the controller input.

On v1.0 and v1.1 it is the same as the front loader NES. It requires a 74HCU04 inverter between cart pins 65 and 58. This setup could be made with tap points for wiring all the expansion port pins of the NES, and Famicom as well.

I could change to the top loader NES input wiring. The U9 inverter could be removed and cart pins 65-58 wired to one of the 74HC368s instead. The downside would be not all NES expansion port pins would be available.

I could use Famicom wiring and have a microphone input! Nevermind, not that useful.

I am also considering changing the clock circuit to a simpler one transistor version based on the top loader NES. I'm not sure if the two transistor version has a better signal.

If I do complete and manufacture a new PCB, I will also make sure there's additional room behind the cartridge for A/V and power jacks.

I have several v1.1 NS8 systems to sell. This will help fund my efforts to make the design better.
Complete RGB NES Super 8 in blue AG-85 case with PPU, CPU, power supply $400.
RGB NES Super 8 PCB $89
Composite NES Super 8 PCB $49.

eBay removed my listings because of "copyright infringement/modchip use" so I won't be using them anymore. Funny how many NES clone systems sell without issue every day on eBay, but when I build and try to sell them and it's a policy violation. LOL screw eBay.



Edited: 06/03/2013 at 02:25 PM by low_budget

Mar 10, 2013 at 1:14:31 PM
Game-Tech-US (53)
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(Jason Rauch) < Eggplant Wizard >
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Ebay pulls stuff all the time just because the person reviewing the listing has no clue what they are looking at, so they pull it to err on the safe side.
Back in the day my top loaders that were composite modded would get pulled just because I stated that it would play games from other countries, but of course it had nothing to do with the AV mod and they couldn't wrap their heads around that...
I'd go a head and try again, but explain it to the point where it makes sense to someone who knows nothing about, well anything, but still got a job with ebay.

Mar 15, 2013 at 11:58:30 AM
low_budget (0)

(Nick Fury) < Little Mac >
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Some progress on a new NES Super 8 PCB design I've been working on:

I think I may be able to add 1/2" clearance to the back of the NS8 PCB for A/V and power jacks without making the board bigger. This will move the cartridge slot about 1/4" forward in the case. I may need to relocate the controller ports forward and to the right as well. It will be a challenge to make room for a right angle PCB mount 8p DIN connector for RGB, but I'll try.

This will require a major redesign of the PCB, since I will have to make the same circuitry fit in a smaller space.

v1.0 and v1.1 had cart slot pin 37 connected to the 21.477 clock in the NES. I don't believe this is necessary so I may remove it. The Famicom and NES top loader do not have this pin connected. Does anybody know if any NES cart uses this pin?

About ebay, I've constantly had problems with my [legal, no policy violation] game system projects being removed. I had a Dreamcast with VGA port removed for no reason. A NES top loader was removed because I fixed the blinking light. I'm tired of begging them to take my fee money. They offered no help whatsoever in resolving this and basically told me I'd be suspended if I re-listed the legal items.
Anyway now I'm just selling direct or may try Tindie.


Mar 15, 2013 at 2:17:40 PM
marvelus10 (46)

( . ) Boobies ( . ) < King Solomon >
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You could try selling on http://www.gamegavel.com/...

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Apr 9, 2013 at 2:14:52 PM
low_budget (0)

(Nick Fury) < Little Mac >
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More info on the NES Super 8 redesign prototype:

Here's what I can say for sure the new PCB will have:
Controller input pins moved to the front right side.
The video and audio outputs have been moved to the back.
Data traces much shorter now.
Several fewer components with no loss of functionality.
On-board connectors: 2.5 x 5.5mm power, 8 pin DIN (for RGB), 5(total) RCA jacks that can be wired for different video outputs.
Size will be the same as the previous Super 8 versions, the back 1/2" can be cut off and removed if the ports aren't needed (say if building a portable.)

Since many things have been changed, the plan is to get 3 prototypes ordered and (if all works well) make a production version.
I usually wait to order boards until they just feel like the design is ready.

I still have a couple v1.1 RGB and composite NES Super 8 PCBs. The composite version is $79 and RGB is now $119.
I can sell bare v1.1 PCBs for $25 each as well.

May 24, 2013 at 3:04:42 PM
low_budget (0)

(Nick Fury) < Little Mac >
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Here is the new prototype NES Super 8 assembled. 
It has a second PCB for mounting the controller ports, power switch, and reset button. 
The layout is totally different than v1.1 and works great.

I'll do a video of the system being tested soon. I'm lowbudgetify on youtube.

Does anyone know how Bunnyboy's NES HDMI project is progressing? If it was compatible with the NES Super 8, they could combine to form the best NES system ever! 


Edited: 05/24/2013 at 03:11 PM by low_budget

May 28, 2013 at 10:50:04 PM
jdubs (1)

(Jim Wehrfritz) < Cherub >
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How's cartridge compatability with the new layout?  Same as with the prvevious PCB?

-Jim

Jun 3, 2013 at 2:21:29 PM
low_budget (0)

(Nick Fury) < Little Mac >
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Game compatibility is 99.5% when using an RGB PPU and about 98% with the NES original composite PPU.
Games that use diagonal scrolling have graphics glitches when using the composite PPU. The only reason for this I can think of is the RAM is about 10x faster than original and affects the sensitive timing of the composite PPU.

Jun 4, 2013 at 8:16:54 AM
dra600n (300)
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(Adym \m/) < Bonk >
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Originally posted by: low_budget

Here is the new prototype NES Super 8 assembled. 
It has a second PCB for mounting the controller ports, power switch, and reset button. 
The layout is totally different than v1.1 and works great.

I'll do a video of the system being tested soon. I'm lowbudgetify on youtube.

Does anyone know how Bunnyboy's NES HDMI project is progressing? If it was compatible with the NES Super 8, they could combine to form the best NES system ever! 

That would be really awesome to combine the projects. Looks great so far!

-------------------------
Proud owner of post #1800 in Inner Circle HQ thread

Jun 4, 2013 at 9:04:54 AM
ThatNintendoGuy (47)
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(Jason B) < El Ripper >
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Originally posted by: dra600n

Originally posted by: low_budget

Here is the new prototype NES Super 8 assembled. 
It has a second PCB for mounting the controller ports, power switch, and reset button. 
The layout is totally different than v1.1 and works great.

I'll do a video of the system being tested soon. I'm lowbudgetify on youtube.

Does anyone know how Bunnyboy's NES HDMI project is progressing? If it was compatible with the NES Super 8, they could combine to form the best NES system ever! 

That would be really awesome to combine the projects. Looks great so far!

I would definitely shoot Bunnyboy a PM the progress is looking great.


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Jun 4, 2013 at 10:16:19 AM
Paul (226)
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(P S) < Bonk >
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Bunnyboy for years had it in his signature specifically that he doesn't read PMs. Just an FYI

Jun 30, 2013 at 1:30:14 PM
low_budget (0)

(Nick Fury) < Little Mac >
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I will be building about 10 fully assembled NES super 8 systems with the new PCB design in the AG-85 case.
If all goes to plan, they will be ready in 2 months.

Unlike my previous assembled systems, these will have a more professional, finished product fit and finish to them.
RGB version will be about $230, composite version system is TBD.

Everything will be included minus CPU/PPU chips and a Geneesis style RGB cable or video converter.

It doesn't look like the bunnyboy's HDMI project or the universal PPU project will be completed anytime soon, so they will need the usual NES (composite) PPU or the arcade (RGB) PPU. These solutions will likely be no cheaper than the RGB PPU chip anyway.

I have been selling assembled PCBs on www.tindie.com... for a month or so.

Sep 16, 2013 at 8:53:16 PM
low_budget (0)

(Nick Fury) < Little Mac >
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I have v2.0 of the NES Super 8 PCB ready and progress is being made on a AG-85 based case.

I also made some CXA2075 based RGB encoder circuit boards I may incorporate into the system.

I'm now selling selling the RGB to s-video / composite encoders on www.tindie.com... as well.
These work great in several other game systems and vintage computers as well.

Trying to think of ideas to make the Universal PPU replacement board compatible. Right now the PPU replacement interferes with the cart slot.

Oct 30, 2013 at 9:16:56 AM
low_budget (0)

(Nick Fury) < Little Mac >
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I am building eight of the NES Super 8 v2.0 Systems pre-installed in a CNC cut AG-85 case.
They have RGB video out and are available with or without CPU and PPU.

The launch date is Nov. 15th, going toe to toe with the PS4.
Unlike the PS4 however, the Super 8 has over 1,000 game titles available at launch. Quality third party titles from Konami, Capcom, Rare, and more.

I have 4.5 hours assembly on each. Also the PPU chip costs me $200.
The development, PCB design, and testing was quite time consuming as well.

So, some may complain about the price, but I think its reasonable.
The ready to go v2.0 NES Super 8 (including CPU and PPU) in black CNC cut case with white silkscreen is $499
The system with everything but the CPU and PPU chip is $249.

Any sales go toward future NES related projects and improvements.
I will sell on Tindie.com or can PM for direct sale.


Edited: 10/30/2013 at 09:38 AM by low_budget

Oct 30, 2013 at 10:32:11 AM
removed04092017 (0)
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Di you ever fix the MMC3 problem?

And did you use an RGB PPU? You do know that the $99 PCB to solder in with the normal PPU and get RGB is going to be much cheaper now. Why didn't you talk about getting it built in directly with them? I mean I know it only recently came to light, but we did know it was gonna happen.

I do like the case though, nice and compact.

Nov 4, 2013 at 1:41:23 AM
low_budget (0)

(Nick Fury) < Little Mac >
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There was never issues with any of the mappers in NES games. I thought Punch Out was glitchy until I determined the Powerpak was causing glitches.

The NESRGB is compatible with the Super 8, however the PPU socket needs a "PPU relocation adapter" as with the other top loader NES systems.
I personally think the NESRGB is better suited as an add-on board since it uses all SMT parts, while the Super 8 uses mostly thru hole components. It would also require ANOTHER complete PCB redesign and make the Super 8 board about 50% larger.



Nov 15, 2013 at 2:44:38 AM
low_budget (0)

(Nick Fury) < Little Mac >
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I listed all my assembled NES Super 8 systems left after the pre-orders on Tindie.com. I was able to build these faster by doing several at a time, so they are cheaper than my earlier estimates. I really worked hard making these the highest quality.

https://www.tindie.com/products/l...

https://www.tindie.com/products/l...

Thanks for looking!


Edited: 11/16/2013 at 02:58 PM by low_budget

Nov 15, 2013 at 9:49:17 AM
Oddzball (6)

< Meka Chicken >
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Wait, These are for sale?

Nov 15, 2013 at 9:49:23 PM
SnoopKatt (16)
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(Anthony B) < Eggplant Wizard >
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Your links got truncated, so they don't work.