Do it Yourself GAMEBOY Flash Cart

Discussion in 'General Gaming Discussion' started by Gerry_MAN, Aug 3, 2010.

  1. Gerry_MAN

    Gerry_MAN Newbie

    Aug 3, 2010
    Hi Folks,

    I'm trying to collaborate with other Electronics Hobbyists working on Flash Carts. I'm currently working on a Flash cart for the GBA. I just completed one for the classic Gameboy. My Background is in Electronics and Robotics. I'm still having some issues with the FLash interface, but I'm making progress which is motivating. I'm also working on one for the Sega GameGear.

    I find the main problem I'm having is getting the proper ROM chip pinout connections. Allot of the available connection diagrams found online, are put together by other hobbyists and are not always 100% accurate.
    But regardless, I'll be getting it functioning soon.

    Anyone else an avid Electronics Hobbyist? I would love to trade research if anyone is interested.

    I have just recently completed a 5 part Instructional Video that shows how to build a Standard GameBoy Flash cart. It also covers Flash Programming procedures using a Willem Programmer and an ATMEL AT49F040 4Mbit Flash Chip or (512Kb of memory storage). This is great for trying out your own custom Assembly code and custom games.

    I will be putting another video together for the GBA Flash Cart version as soon as I finish. But would love to chat with others that have successfully built similar models.

    The video below is PART 1 of 5 for the GAMEBOY Flash Cart:

    I look forward to your replies,

    My Electronics/Robotics YouTube Channel:
  2. patevo

    patevo Newbie

    Sep 12, 2009
    United States
    I think I just found myself a new project for the rest of the summer.
  3. saxamo

    saxamo Spaaaaace!

    Aug 6, 2006
    United States
    Unfortunately, many of the users here are nowhere close to that proficiency, but I do try to avoid generalization, and there are now hundreds of thousands of users registered so there may very well be members here who are in your league.

    That being said, this is extremely impressive! I love the level of detail your videos and it's a great learning experience for someone like me with no experience in these fields whatsoever. I wish you the best with this and hope you continue and expand this experimenting across various carts and even possibly ones such as Nintendo DS cartridges.
  4. Daku93

    Daku93 GBAtemp Regular

    Jul 24, 2008
    Gambia, The
    Düsseldorf, Germany
    Nice! I allways wanted to do something like this. And now I found it and will try ti build this in my holidays.
  5. DigitalDeviant

    DigitalDeviant GBAtemp Addict

    Feb 14, 2010
    United States
    Solar Federation
    you have my respect sir.
  6. xist


    Jul 14, 2008's videos like that series that remind me how inadequate i am....
  7. trumpet-205

    trumpet-205 Embrace the darkness within

    Jan 14, 2009
    United States
    This is very impressive. You earned my respect sir. [​IMG]

    Imagine what will Nintendo think about this.
  8. murkurie

    murkurie GBAtemp Fan

    Feb 16, 2010
    United States
    California, Redlands
    you sir, are skilled, I shall attempt this, later in the year.
  9. Fudge

    Fudge Remember that death is not the end, but only a tra

    Aug 26, 2009
    United States
    New York
    Awesome! I probably couldn't do it, but still, great work!
  10. xxteargodxx

    xxteargodxx GBAtemp Regular

    Feb 12, 2010
    United States
    Looks pretty interesting.
  11. geoflcl

    geoflcl Permanent GBAtemp Newbie

    Jan 18, 2009
    United States
    Way to make an entrance, Gerry_MAN! This is a fantastic series of videos. You obviously know your stuff, bro. Welcome to the 'Temp!
  12. _Chaz_

    _Chaz_ GBAtemp's Official Mook™

    Sep 12, 2009
    United States
    Wow, uh.

    That was er... a really um nice video! Ehh... I really uh enjoyed it for er the um most part.

    Btw, congratulations on your first post at the temp being an awesome one.
  13. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

    pip Reporter
    Nov 21, 2005
    United Kingdom
    Wow I somehow missed this first time around.

    I have toyed with the idea in the past (mainly after reading , they also do some stuff on GBA*) but I am spoiled by emulation and LSDJ ( the main reason people seem to make these devices for) does not really interest me and so I never went for it.

    *if you are after GBA stuff there was another cart also made but commercial devices took things far further.

    What I would be interested in seeing is something for the GBA like the old EZ5 or the newer "stealth" type flash carts (supercard, EZ5i and the like) for the DS that avoid patching the rom instead opting to emulate the save ram of the device in hardware (usually on an FPGA or something). Game wise it would be pointless as patching is easy and those games that detect it are few and far between as well as of little note. Unless however you wanted to take it a step further and add the option of emulating the expansion options (kind of like nes with mappers and SNES with special chips) like light sensors, real time clock, rumble, tile sensors and the like.
    Failing that a lot of nice advances in the technology (PSRAM, NOR, NAND and flash storage prices/performance prices all dropping through the floor for one along with a matching rise in availability and ease of use) used in these circles happened after the GBA died down or moved to commodity (the EZ 3 in 1 and other expansion packs).

    I have been meaning to shift my focus away from software/security and/or materials back to hardware so this might be just what I need to kick it all off. If you want help with the former two I am all for it but hardware wise I suspect you can operate a logic analyser or oscilloscope as well as I can.
    Similarly I have pulled apart many GBA flash carts and figured out large parts of how they work I can probably help with that.
  14. Gerry_MAN

    Gerry_MAN Newbie

    Aug 3, 2010
    Nice, that's awesome! Logic Analyzers are sweet. [​IMG]

    I have a 2 Channel HP/Agilent Digital Oscilloscope and an older 50 Channel Logic Analyzer. It serves me well for what I need.

    I'm currently etching a PCB for interfacing a 40 Pin TSOP chip to an MBC5 cart. The Flash chip I'm using is an AMD 64Mbit Flash chip.

    You guys should check out my GameBoy Electronics Yahoo group if you get a chance. I have allot of PCB layout designs for the Gameboy Carts. The Files are for use with the Cadsoft Eagle PCB layout Software.

    If you plan on Etching some Boards for your Projects, its a great asset to have and there are now about 17 Members. They are all devoted to the Flash Cart electronics Development for the various Gameboy platforms.

    Gameboy_Electronics Yahoo Group - Join!

    I'll post some Photos here once I get the PCB finished.

    And I'll also keep you posted on my GameGear Flash cart once it gets going again.
    I recently had to put this one on the back burner with school starting up again.

    Thanks for all the positive feedback folks! [​IMG]

    Talk to you all later,
  15. amptor

    amptor Banned

    May 2, 2003
    United States
    Three words:

    Carbon Copy Card

    look it up on google. I made one in 1998.