1. sofakng

    OP sofakng Advanced Member
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    I'm looking to play some Gameboy Advance games and I've just purchased a Gameboy Player, but I found a very old EZ-Flash II (512Mb) cartridge that I had laying around.

    Will it still work OK? I've read about slowdown issues or possible other problems?

    (I'd like to order an Everdrive X5 but they are on pre-order from StoneAgeGamer)
     
  2. Sterophonick

    Sterophonick GBAtemp Regular
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    It might still work OK, but a bigger problem you be connecting it to modern PCs.

    You would likely need to use a Windows XP virtual machine, due to how old those drivers and programs are.
     
  3. playstays_shun

    playstays_shun GBAtemp Fan
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    why not get X5 mini from everdrive.me?

    stoneage is only doing preorders for the non mini and its $7 more than retail
     
    Last edited by playstays_shun, Jul 9, 2020
  4. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer
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    No EZFlash device has had slowdown issues with the GBA. Supercards, supercard clones and some of the really oldest GBA carts had it but everything else works fine (give or take a save patch). The EZ2 then representing one of the most compatible flash carts out there.

    At this point I imagine the battery is toast. You can try leaving it in the cradle/linker for a few hours to charge it and see whether it will keep them. Technically you could try the SMS thing (savegame management system, not sega master system which does have GBA emulators) but don't, or play games that don't care about saves.
    The battery is a panasonic VL2020 and you will want tabs on yours unless you have a tab welder already. Sadly they are also used in BMW key fobs so replacement costs are often high (though you don't need the BMW version and a normal tabbed version will do).
    If you can find another suitable rechargeable battery then great (there is not much in the way of charge management other than some basic current limiting).

    You will probably want an XP install (or a virtual machine with it in) to operate the program -- I don't think we have anything like FAS1 for the EZ1/EZ2 at this point and while there is some source code I don't think much has been done yet.

    Your main limitation then will be that 512Mbit (that is 64 megabytes for others playing along at home) does indeed mean that and with many games being 128MBit and things topping out at 256Mbit ( http://gbatemp.net/threads/buying-a-gba-flash-cart-in-2013.341203/page-18#post-4756995 has a list) you have sharply limited space.

    I should also note you can probably sell the setup if you were that way inclined. While a nice 8Gbit EZ3 would be more desirable* and the market has faded a bit since EZFlash and Everdrive decided to drop their more recent efforts there are still those that want the legacy/vintage stuff and a 512 EZ2 is a really nice score we don't see come up often (might not fund an everdrive but you could fund an omega and maybe have a bit left over, or someone might do a straight swap).
    *the ability to shove GBA carts in the linker and read them and possibly also read/write saves as well off in the PC... it is a nice ability to have, never mind having a solid little flash cart that probably also means you dodge pirate syndrome to play with as well.
     
    Tarmfot and slaphappygamer like this.
  5. sofakng

    OP sofakng Advanced Member
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    Thanks so much for the detailed reply!

    I've let my EZ-Flash2 in the cartridge holder charging via USB and it started at 2.63v but it's dropping very, very fast and not holding a charge at all.

    I see a lot of VL2020 batteries but the tabs aren't in the same position as the EZ-Flash 2 battery... :(
     
  6. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer
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    I don't know what the hold current and minimum Voltage is for the SRAM offhand, nor what the deep discharge cutoff (that being the voltage at which if things drop below it that it starts to damage the battery and be harder to recover) but it could still do something. That said yeah that is probably a dud battery and I would not like to rely on my saves being there when I come back in a week or something.

    Tab wise you can bend things (I believe they were for the EZ2, or at least some of the ones I saw), and you can also fly a wire around the place. If push comes to shove a bit of electrical tape to prevent shorts if the tab has to go somewhere that risks it will do the job.
     
  7. sofakng

    OP sofakng Advanced Member
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    Thanks again... I'm going to order this VL-2020/VCN from Digi-Key since I'm ordering other components and it should be an authentic Panasonic since Digi-Key is reputable (of course).

    It looks like the battery settled at 2.59v but seems quite low for a 3V battery (?) and I'd rather not take chances with save games.
     
  8. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer
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    https://industrial.panasonic.com/ww...eries/coin_rechargeable_lithium/models/VL2020 has cutoffs in their diagrams of 2.5V, though at the same time 2.5V is well into the "bad stuff is happening, don't go here if you can" range which I would not expect to see for simply holding a SRAM chip on.
    Looking at some random SRAM chips (would rather not go find and rip apart my EZ2 right now) has memory hold voltages at somewhat below 2.5V and current draws at that point but I don't know what arrangement the EZ2 uses right now (if a diode or something chops a further).

    Hopefully digikey does not have minimums or sting you too hard on shipping.
     
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