Sad news

6 weeks ago, my mother in law passed away, today, June 23-24, 2018, my father suffered a heart attack.  He is on a respirator in the hospital, with the doctors and nurses doing everything they can to keep him alive and avoid any more brain damage.  I saw him, after waiting 10 hours.  I wish I didn’t have to see him that way.  While I was waiting, I tried to let my customers know that projects will be delayed, but if I missed you, please know that be back at working on this hobby that I love.  With the passing of my mother in law, working on these projects really helped me forget about the sadness a while, and no matter what happens, I will continue on.  Please be patient and all of your hardware is safely stored until I take care of my family. Any thoughts, well wishes, and prayers for my father, Ronald, will be deeply appreciated.

With deepest sincerity,

David Nelson

The cost of a trade war

As many of you know, there is almost certainly going to be a trade war with China, with a 25% tariff on Chinese electronics coming into the United States being proposed.  If this comes to pass, I will be forced to increase prices on nearly all the of parts used with my modifications.  Nearly all of the parts, with the exception of capacitors, come from China.  I charge cost pricing on all parts used, so any increase will reflected in the new price.  I do not pad my parts costs, so I can not absorb this additional cost and am forced to pass it on to my loyal customers.  For that, I am very frustrated.  If I have to do this, I am sure 1,000 other modders out there will have to do the same.  It truly is a shame.

I will attempt to update prices as they change, I may have to send an updated invoice for any order placed, which will only reflect my parts cost, the cost of labor will remain the same.  

I just hope these foolish actions don’t stall the economy as a whole and lead to another Great Recession.

-David Nelson

Please send me new orders :-)

You know what, working on projects helps me more than not working on them.  Please send me whatever ideas that pop to mind.  Do you have an ancient console that no one else will touch?  I am here to help.  Do you want a custom Raspberry Pi system built into a cigar box?  Let me know.  Would you like a custom controller for ANY system EVER made?  Give me a buzz at retro at cyberphreak.com or post/message me on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/RetroCyberphreak/

Or, if Facebook is not your thing, you can tweet at me @Cyberphreak_Com https://twitter.com/Cyberphreak_Com

Or request a quote.  I truly do enjoy working on old hardware and creating new.

 

 

I will not be taking any more orders at this time.  Any order already received will be completed in a timely manner.

I just wanted to let you know, I hope this is not permanent.  I am working through some personal issues, and I wanted to thank all of my loyal patrons that enjoy my work.

I don’t foresee this delaying any projects that I have on hand, but I need a little break before taking on any new orders.  Thank you for your understanding and patience.

-David Nelson

April 30, 2018

Quotes

In case you are looking for a custom modification or repair, please use the quote form below.

Game Boy Advance Backlit Screen

As always, my younger brother loves to throw new projects at me, in this case, a Gameboy Advance, AGB-001, aka, the one with the useless color screen.  Previously, someone had installed a frontlight, that was way too bright and uneven.  Fortunately, you can install the screen from the Gameboy Advance SP, second generation, with a little plastic modification.  There are many sites that detail how to do it yourself, or I can do it for you, *wink*.

Thankfully, I actually have an x-y milling setup in my workshop, so modifying the housing was straightforward, but I don’t envy people who have to do it with nippers and a razor, yikes.  The results are pretty amazing, so much so, I purchased a GBA a few days ago to do the mod myself.  I like the form factor a lot and want to be able to play the gamut of Game Boy games on an amazing screen.  I posted a video above, on my own personal machine.

I am tempted to add a pre-modded GBA as a standard product.  Let me know in the comments if there is any interest.

 

Site Updates and New Projects Coming

I was able to return to my previous theme, “Mantra” after reading the freaking manual.  I have been working on repairing a Coleco Adam:  I replaced all the capacitors and added internal power supplies, so no more silly printer.  More details on that one later, along with another Jaguar to Colecovision controller conversion.

I am also working repairing an Emerson Arcadia 2000 for Classic Game Room, its got issues man.  That should be a fun write up.

I added one new product to the lineup of services, The famous McWill LCD mod for the Atari Lynx.  Not cheap, but amazing when it is done.

So, keep tuned, hopefully I will put up some new video content soon.

 

5200 Controller

Parts List:

Cable:  https://console5.com/store/neo-geo-aes-atari-5200-pc-controller-joystick-extension-cables-6-1-8m.html

Keypad:  http://www.ebay.com/itm/4-x-4-Matrix-Array-16-Keys-44-Switch-Keypad-Keyboard-Module-for-Arduino-/292157244585?hash=item4405edc4a9:g:eScAAOSwHLNZSGTI

Joystick:  https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00OS4U35G/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

500k potentiometers:  http://www.ebay.com/itm/2Pcs-Mini-Pots-18mm-Split-Shaft-Audio-Taper-A500K-Electric-Guitar-Potentiometer-/192029611906?hash=item2cb5db5782:g:94kAAOSwZ8ZW4fY~

The 50K pots on the original joystick need to be replaced to be compatible with the 500K the 5200 is looking for.

Buttons:  http://www.ebay.com/itm/Genuine-OBSF-30-Black-Sanwa-Arcade-Push-Buttons-US-Seller-/252983141830?epid=11002785669&hash=item3ae6f865c6:g:iJwAAOSwiQ9ZOyb6

Case:  http://www.simcobox.com/150×75-desktop-plastic-enclosure.html

Case, in grey:  http://www.ebay.com/itm/200mmx170mmx65mm-ABS-Plastic-Electronic-Project-Junction-Box-Enclosure-Case-/352093166680?hash=item51fa635c58:g:wHkAAOSw0j9ZSNvm

Look for a 200x170x65mm case.

Schematic:

 

Atari 5200

I was successfully able to mod an Atari 5200, 4 port, original console.  It was quite a challenge, but what I did discover is there are not many resources out there for modding the 5200.  Below is a schematic of the circuit that worked for me:

A PDF of the same document:  5200_video_out.

PDF of Rev B, with RCA and S-Video Jacks:  5200_video_out_rev_B

For the mod I did, I went with composite out, but you can just as easily do S-Video out.  This schematic is a mashup of http://www.gamesx.com/wiki/doku.php?id=av:5200_s-video_mod and http://atariage.com/forums/topic/193474-better-atari-5200-s-video-mod/

This version of the 5200 video out differs in one respect, I replaced the fixed 2K Ohm resistor on the Chroma line and replaced it with a 10K, 20 turn potentiometer.  I found I was able to adjust this pot until noise was more or less eliminated from the composite video.  It may not be needed with S-Video.  Another adjustment is on the 5200 board.  There is a large potentiometer in the lower right quadrant that is the color adjust.  I loaded up Ballblazer and adjusted the colors to what I thought looked most accurate.

The connection points are as follows:

Thanks Atari Age!

A/V Port Mounted on expansion port cover.

Ballblazer. Color adjusted and you can see how clean the signal is over composite.

Composite output board, before mounting.

Closeup of A/V board.

My next project is to reverse engineer the 5200 controller to allow for the use of modern potentiometer based control sticks. And here is the pot based stick: