1. MatinatorX

    OP MatinatorX DragonInjector Project Creator
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    Hey everyone! I want to share a project I'm currently working on - a payload injector with the form factor of a Switch game cart!

    As I seem to always forget to bring my phone, cable, OTG adapter or dongle with me, and I'm not a big fan of AutoRCM, I started thinking - wouldn't it be great if I could just store my jig and dongle inside my Switch? I don't really like the idea of opening my switch and soldering to it for warranty/resale reasons, and my card slot is always empty because, well, we live in the age of digital. Thus, DragonInjector was born.

    DragonInjector FAQ:
    What is DragonInjector?
    DragonInjector is a general purpose MCU board housed a similar form factor to that of a game cartridge, so it can easily be stored inside your console.

    How is it powered?
    DragonInjector is powered by a user-replaceable CR1612 watch battery. One is included pre-installed.

    Does this click in my game card slot like a normal game card?
    Yes! Mechanically, it behaves exactly the same way.

    Can this charge from the game card slot?
    Nope. A rechargeable model wouldn't provide enough benefit to justify the much higher expense required to develop and manufacture it.

    What about those game card pins then? What do they do?
    They're there for aesthetic purposes only and to protect the pins in the gamecard slot from damage and wear. They are not electrically connected to anything.

    I'm an advanced user, can I write my own firmware? What about updates?
    Of course! Feel free to fork the GitHub and make whatever changes you wish - everything is open source! If you make something cool, let me know! In the event the firmware on the DI requires updating or you want to write your own, you can just plug it into a computer and use the free firmware tool to update or customize the firmware. You can find a link to the GitHub at the bottom of this page.

    Is there a place we can follow and chat about the project or ask questions that aren't fit for this development thread?
    Yes! There's a Discord server where I post progress, renders, photos, and other things quite often. Click the button in my signature to join!

    When can I get one?
    Availability estimated for March, however this is not a set date.

    How much will it cost?
    $30 USD, which includes a CR1612 and Type C adapter. Shipping cost varies by region.

    Where can I buy it?
    When more are ready, you'll be able to purchase them from the web store. You can visit the store page by clicking the button in my signature.

    Shipping to my country is expensive. Will you consider combined shipping?
    Of course! Visit the Discord server and find your country under the "Combined Shipping Help" category on the left to coordinate with other buyers in your area. If your country doesn't exist, mention me in the #dragoninjector channel and let me know you'd like it added.

    What colors will it be offered in?
    The first batch of units will be available in translucent green and black. If there is enough demand for other colors they will become an option in the future.
    IMG_20191212_221032.jpg IMG_20191212_214918.jpg IMG_20191212_215027.jpg IMG_20191212_215734.jpg
     
    Last edited by MatinatorX, May 4, 2020
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  2. YigglyPoof

    YigglyPoof GBAtemp Regular
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    Cool idea! If I were you, I would get rid of the jig and just install AutoRCM, it would streamline everything.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited by YigglyPoof, Jul 18, 2018
  3. MatinatorX

    OP MatinatorX DragonInjector Project Creator
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    Jig is optional. AutoRCM is still an option, you can always omit the funny shaped cap and print one that's more to your liking.

    Some people have reported problems with AutoRCM and of course you never know what the future holds for the Switch so I like having my options open.
     
    Last edited by MatinatorX, Jul 18, 2018
  4. The Real Jdbye

    The Real Jdbye Always Remember 30/07/08
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    That is a really cool idea. Even for those that have retail games, most of us use a pouch and those usually hold 10 or more games, so the dongle with jig would fit in one of the slots designated for cartridges. Also, it would be the smallest dongle/jig yet if you can accomplish it.
     
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  5. DeoNaught

    DeoNaught I'm here to steal memes and break dreams
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    I think Having the jig is a good idea, cause not everyone wants to brick their switch ;P
     
  6. hack_my_switch

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    This is a really cool idea. I can't wait to see your progress.
     
  7. MatinatorX

    OP MatinatorX DragonInjector Project Creator
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    I appreciate all the early feedback! Pictures are now in the second post - thanks YigglyPoof!
     
  8. DeoNaught

    DeoNaught I'm here to steal memes and break dreams
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    D A M N S O N.
     
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  9. Soluble

    Soluble GBAtemp Advanced Fan
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    Looks pretty cool. Good luck
     
  10. Summitatem

    Summitatem Newbie
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    Looking forward to seeing the progress on this!
     
  11. JohnnyLive

    JohnnyLive Newbie
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    nice bro i would buy one so fast lol
     
  12. rrocha

    rrocha Advanced Member
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    First of all, great ideia!! Would be also great if we can understand if the cartridge pins are powered while in RCM. This way, the battery wouldn't be needed at all as it could fetch the 3.3V and GND straight from the cart rails.

    for reference:
    http://switchbrew.org/index.php?title=Gamecard
     
  13. SexiestManAlive

    SexiestManAlive The key that lights the dark
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    I cant wait until this is finished, amazing idea
     
  14. Thetoto

    Thetoto GBAtemp Advanced Fan
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    So we can inject a payload through the cartrige slot ?
     
  15. Thetoto
    This message by Thetoto has been removed from public view by Quantumcat, Aug 5, 2018, Reason: Dupe.
    Jul 18, 2018
  16. RHOPKINS13

    RHOPKINS13 Geek
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    I think y'all are misinterpreting the post. OP's not trying to send the payload through the cartridge slot (at least not yet, that would be an awesome idea if we could!), this is just a dongle that is small enough that it would fit in a Switch game cartridge.

    And I think it looks amazing. I would buy this over TX's dongle any day! Sign me up! I want to pre-order!
     
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  17. rrocha

    rrocha Advanced Member
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    Yes, I know that and I think you misunderstood my post: until now, you need a 3V power supply for the trinket. In my case I did it with a CR2032 and OP is suggesting using a CR1616 which is half the size. What I'm suggesting is to use the GND and 3.3V lines from the cartridge slot (in case it still delivers 3.3V while in RCM) to power up the trinket. This way, you'd just insert the trinket cartridge, connect usb to it, and voilá!! :)
     
  18. RHOPKINS13

    RHOPKINS13 Geek
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    Oh that does sound like a good idea! You're right, when I first read your post I assumed when you were talking about powering it from the cartridge rails that you were thinking of sending the payload through the cartridge slot. This makes much more sense.
     
  19. MatinatorX

    OP MatinatorX DragonInjector Project Creator
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    I thought about this while I was designing the board, but ultimately decided against it as you would end up needing a cable to go from the injector to the switch USB port (sadly the game cart socket does not break out the USB pins, thus payload injection this way will sadly never happen...) and that cable would never be able to fit into the space freed up by the removal of the battery. The cable would also have to have a non-standard end on the DragonInjector side, as there's no way you could fit the end of a USB cable inside the top of the card slot to plug it in. If you have to remember to bring that cable with you, you might as well opt for one of the larger injector solutions and just bring that.

    However, the idea isn't a complete dead-end. I've been doing a lot of research on super capacitors lately, especially after learning the SX dongle uses them. We already know the game card slot has pins for +3.3v and GND. If the slot is energized when the Switch is in RCM mode and it can supply enough current then this would be an ideal excuse to swap the battery for a supercap. Technically, having no power to the game card when in RCM is still plausible, but only for jig users; with AutoRCM, a depleted DragonInjector would leave you with no way to charge it and a Switch that can't boot without a working dongle.

    There's unfortunately no public datasheet for the flash chip Nintendo uses for Switch game carts, but a quick search on the manufacturer's site for high capacity flash chips (8gbit or higher) yeilds only 3 models, all of which can pull as much as 30mA. I'd be really surprised if the Switch game carts use less, especially since the chip they're using is 40% larger than the other ones I mentioned above.

    Based on some quick fuzzy math, 20-30mA would be enough to charge the cap and power the trinket if I used a 3.3v 0.22F supercap. With sleep mode drawing a paltry 90uA it should last a few days out of the slot if you forget to turn the power off and charging would be under an hour. When I get some more time, I'll rig something up to test for voltage in the card slot during RCM, and if that works I'll see how much current a Switch cart pulls. Currently slimming down the board even more since, after getting my hands on a real cart, I found out the dimensions are actually 21.4mm x 31.2mm x 3.4mm.

    I've been thinking about this a bit too - what to do if there's lots of interest, since the feedback so far has been really positive (thanks everyone!). I know for sure I want to release the gerbers and parts list and maybe the model too for free so that anyone who wants to can make their own. That said, while it's far too early to plan anything, I get that SMD soldering is a rare hobby. So, if this thing turns out well enough I'm open to making more to sell to the community. If I remember right, there's a license for this kind of stuff that allows me to give out the designs and stuff so you can use them for anything short of selling them yourself.
     
    Last edited by MatinatorX, Jul 19, 2018
  20. MatinatorX

    OP MatinatorX DragonInjector Project Creator
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    Main post updated! Finally finished squishing everything down to fit the new dimensions and got the enclosure modeled. New boards on their way, will order the case bits from Shapeways this week.
     
  21. Asia81

    Asia81 GBAtemp Guru
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    day one

    — Posts automatically merged - Please don't double post! —

    oh
    day one anyways
     
    Last edited by Asia81, Jul 23, 2018
  22. Pluupy

    Pluupy _(:3」∠)_
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    Dang OP that's super smart! You should try to see if you can mass produce these. I bet you'd make the muns. It is so convenient to have it on-hand in the cartridge slot.
     
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  23. Asia81

    Asia81 GBAtemp Guru
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    :yay:
    [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
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