09/04/2018 at 21:50 •
Like I mentioned before, I decided to go with two versions of the board this time. I remember trying to make PCB's in my garage back in college. I was always trying to save as much board space as possible and trying to be as cheap as possible. It's getting so ridiculously cheap to buy PCB's now, that I don't even worry about having to buy twice as many boards. It's only going to cost me about $30 for 20 boards.
In the meantime, I may try and experiment with the composite output. I noticed some interesting things on the schematic of the RF box. More updates about that later.
Schematic version 2 will be uploaded shortly.
09/03/2018 at 04:31 •
It's been about 10 months since I last updated this project. I made the first rev and it worked okay. Incidentally, 10 months ago was about the time my daughter was born. So, needless to say I've been busy. Now that life is slowing back down a little, I'm working on rev 2. I've got the hardware changes done and now I'm just down to finishing up the traces.
There are now 2 versions of this board! I've given up trying to make the dual footprint work. At first I thought the mini-DIN was too large for the RF output jack, but on closer inspection, it's about the same diameter minus the plastic shroud. I'm going to push the mini-DIN as close to the panel as I can. I may have to do another revision after this, but I'll order this board and try it out.
More good news! I think I've found a better 3 pole slide switch. I like to use parts that are (relatively) easy to find through first party suppliers like Mouser and Digikey. Part of the difficulty was getting a 3 pole switch that had the same standoff as the old switch, with a long actuator. Dual pole switches, on the other hand, were easier to find with the right dimensions. Just when I had almost given up, I found one. I had actually looked at earlier, but I thought it wouldn't fit. Turns out I was just reading the dimensions on the drawing wrong. The travel length of the switch was messing with me. It's actually fits in the same physical space as the dual pole version. Hooray!
If Bob from @retrorgb is reading this, maybe the "no-cut" version is a possibility after all!
I should have these boards ordered by the end of the week. I expect to get them in about two weeks. Version A will have the mini-DIN connector and version B will have the RCA jack. Once I get the boards tested, I will update the instructions.
- Finish routing traces
- Order rev 2 boards
- Build and test the composite circuit. I'll make a project log about this later. Turns out the composite input on my 10 year old flat screen broke on me. No wonder I couldn't get it to work!
08/27/2018 at 01:58 •
I've been really busy this year. You know how it is. Life gets in the way sometimes. There seems to be a resurgence of interest in my project. I'll have to get my butt in gear and finish the next revision.
I tried to make it so that I only had one PCB board for all versions, but the combined footprint of mini DIN plus RCA jack seems to be more trouble than it's worth. For the next one, I'll make two versions. One with composite only and one with RGB. I'm also going to look into a two position slide switch rather than the three position. I think if I use the smaller switch, I might be able to make it fit without cutting the plastic.
09/13/2017 at 16:22 •
Just a quick update. I finally got my NESRGB board installed and working. The PCB I made works like a charm! The PCB almost fit perfectly. Off by a millimeter here or there. So I will need to make some revisions, but overall I think it went very well.
I've already made a few changes to the PCB and pushed it out to GitHub if you would like to look at it. Just keep in mind that it's still a work in progress.
- Test RCA composite circuit using my other NES
- Make mounting holes a little bigger - done
- Move capacitors that are in the way of the heatsink - done
- Move regulator down just a smidge - done
- Adjust hole size for motherboard connector? (maybe. I kind of like it loose fitting)
- Move power connector to try and make it more flush with the back of the NES.
- Adjust mounting holes of RCA connectors
09/06/2017 at 19:21 •
So far, it's looks pretty good! I need to make a few adjustments to some hole sizes, and I need to move the board connector over about a millimeter. But other than that, it fits!
Also, I didn't give enough clearance around the heatsink for a SMD cap. Whoops!
I'm going to start building my RGB version, first because I simply cannot wait. Then I will test the component version of the PCB.
I'm going to take my time and play with my RGB NES for awhile. Once I get around to ordering some more PCBs, I'll take the old one out and test fit the new board. I've been taking plenty of pictures during the process. Once I finish rev 2, I'll make some nice step-by-step instructions.
For now, here's a few pics from today's build:RGB version installed with SNES connector. This is the same PCB with different connectors installed.The connector on my board makes for a very clean install with the NESRGB board.Knocked out the middle piece of plastic and filed it down. The SNES connector sits perfectly in the space where the RCA jacks would be.
08/29/2017 at 16:21 •
I realized that the palette selector for the RGB mod is supposed to be a SPDT "On-Off-On" switch. Unfortunately, I cannot find a switch that is the correct height from the PCB (6 mm) and only 15 mm wide. Almost all miniature slide switches these days are 2.5 mm tall.
I want to try and use parts that are readily available from Mouser, so I chose a DP3T switch. (Dual pole was actually easier to get than SP3T in the size I needed)
Because of the width of the switch, this means you will have to widen the slot on the back by about 5 mm if you plan to use it. You have to modify the case anyways if you want to use RGB, so it shouldn't make much of a difference.
Of course, you don't have to put the switch in at all if you aren't going to use RGB.
08/25/2017 at 16:11 •
Well here goes nothing! I printed out a 1-to-1 picture of the board to test fit it. It looks pretty good to my eyes. Time to order a few PCBs and give it a shot.
I created a GitHub repository and added it to this project. Schematics, BOM, and Gerbers can all be found there.
Build instructions coming soon!
08/21/2017 at 16:30 •
All traces routed. Almost ready to make a PCB! Good thing too, because my NESRGB kit just arrived in the mail on Saturday. I'm to going to print out a 1:1 outline on paper and see how the mounting holes match up first though.
08/18/2017 at 21:21 •
I'm trying to make a PCB that doesn't use slots. A lot of times slots cost extra. It just depends on the board house. It's not easy though. Having holes instead of slots means it's harder to overlap the connectors like I want to do. I think I finally managed to find an RCA jack that will fit in with the mini-DIN connector.
You have the option of populating either J9 or J5. The mini-DIN had to be pushed back about 3 mm from the edge of the PCB. Hopefully, this won't really be an issue, as you're going to have to widen the hole on the NES to accept the mini-DIN regardless.
Also, Altium really, really hates having two parts on top of one another.
08/16/2017 at 14:00 •
I saw that my project was in the trending section on Hackaday this morning. I don't know if that's because people liked it, or just because I updated the project rapidly in one night. Either way awesome!
I'm going to take this opportunity to shamelessly plug another project that I'm working on: The NES Robot https://hackaday.io/project/26257-nesbot
Nick has been working hard learning to program an NES in assembly. Freaking assembly guys! That's amazing!
Every like goes towards getting Nick the motivation (and tea) he needs!