Author Topic: SMD Apple ][ ROM Replacement PCB  (Read 514 times)

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Offline deanclaxton

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SMD Apple ][ ROM Replacement PCB
« on: May 18, 2020, 01:34:40 am »
Hi all,

I built an SMD Apple ROM replacement board for Apple ][, ][ plus and ][ europlus.

NOTE : This is not a new design - well I've substituted in the 39SF010A flash chip (most use a 27c256 eprom), but the overall concept has been around a while. This is the first SMD one I've seen though, and certainly the most compact!

This board replaces all 6 ROMs on the motherboard - you can leave most of the original ones in the sockets as it will overide them - install the board by removing the D0 ROM plus the 74LS138 to the right of it (position F12), then plug this board into the vacated sockets. It takes up no more space that the outline of the 2 sockets it plugs into :)





There is a jumper that allows you to select from 2 different sets of ROMS - Applesoft Basic with Autostart F8 ROM (as per the Apple ][ plus, ][ europlus), or Integer Basic with the non-autostart F8 ROM as per the original Apple ][. If you have a Language Card with the Autostart F8 ROM on it, that will take over from the onboard ROM as per normal.

With the Integer Basic ROM set I've included the Programmers Aid ROM.

The ROMs used :

APPLESOFT D0 - 341-0011
APPLESOFT D8 - 341-0012
APPLESOFT E0 - 341-0013
APPLESOFT E8 - 341-0014
APPLESOFT F0 - 341-0015
APPLESOFT F8 - 341-0020 AUTOSTART MONITOR


INTEGER D0 - 341-0016-00 PROGRAMMERS AID
INTEGER E0 - 341-0001-00
INTEGER E8 - 341-0002-00
INTEGER F0 - 341-0003-00
INTEGER F8 - 341-0004-00 NON-AUTOSTART

This is a handy board to have when troubleshooting a system as you now have a set of known good ROMs - especially given the pin rot that some of the original 40 year old ROMs seem to get (the legs get very fragile and can snap off easily - originals are a 9316 masked ROM and are expensive to replace
 - original masked ROM sets seem to fetch high prices on eBay).

It also allows you to remove all your originals and put them in safe keeping!

Here it is installed :




 8)
« Last Edit: May 18, 2020, 10:10:28 pm by deanclaxton »
 
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Online TK

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Re: Apple ][ ROM Replacement PCB
« Reply #1 on: May 18, 2020, 01:54:15 am »
Nice board.
 

Offline james_s

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Re: Apple ][ ROM Replacement PCB
« Reply #2 on: May 18, 2020, 06:39:41 am »
Looks nicely done. Are the gergers posted somewhere so people can actually build one?
 

Offline deanclaxton

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Re: Apple ][ ROM Replacement PCB
« Reply #3 on: May 18, 2020, 07:01:51 am »
Looks nicely done. Are the gergers posted somewhere so people can actually build one?

Thanks James, I was going to sell them on eBay or direct - just trying to track down some suitable pin headers that wont destroy the original sockets (the ones I have are too big atm @ 0.6mm).
 

Offline ebastler

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Re: Apple ][ ROM Replacement PCB
« Reply #4 on: May 18, 2020, 01:44:25 pm »
Selling Apple ROMs is still a slightly grey area, isn‘t it? Or did Apple (and Microsoft for the Plus ROMs, possibly) release those to the public domain at some point?
 

Offline NivagSwerdna

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Re: Apple ][ ROM Replacement PCB
« Reply #5 on: May 18, 2020, 02:26:06 pm »
Very nice.  I have been doing something similar for my PET.  What we really need is Batten and Allen BA3760 Dill Leadframe (DIP PCB Edge Clip Pins).
 

Offline David Hess

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Re: Apple ][ ROM Replacement PCB
« Reply #6 on: May 18, 2020, 03:03:25 pm »
Selling Apple ROMs is still a slightly grey area, isn‘t it? Or did Apple (and Microsoft for the Plus ROMs, possibly) release those to the public domain at some point?

There is no grey area at all; the content of the ROMs will be protected under copyright for decades yet so the only question is whether Apple would object.
 

Online TK

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Re: Apple ][ ROM Replacement PCB
« Reply #7 on: May 18, 2020, 03:14:20 pm »
In this case the board will only be used by owners of Apple II computers.  They have the original Apple product and either the original ROMs got corrupted/damaged or this option consumes less power as you select to replace a specific number of old ROM chips by a new more modern flash chip.

I am not a lawyer, so cannot give any legal advise, but that is what sounds like a logical reasoning to me.
 

Offline David Hess

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Re: Apple ][ ROM Replacement PCB
« Reply #8 on: May 18, 2020, 04:24:08 pm »
In this case the board will only be used by owners of Apple II computers.  They have the original Apple product and either the original ROMs got corrupted/damaged or this option consumes less power as you select to replace a specific number of old ROM chips by a new more modern flash chip.

Mostly it will depend on whether the copyright owner wants to make a fuss about it.  It is one thing if the owner of the device makes the copy themselves, which also presents practical difficulties for enforcement, and another if they buy a copy from someone else whether they have it or not.

Quote
I am not a lawyer, so cannot give any legal advise, but that is what sounds like a logical reasoning to me.

The law and courts have nothing to do with logic or justice.
 
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Online TK

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Re: Apple ][ ROM Replacement PCB
« Reply #9 on: May 18, 2020, 04:32:34 pm »
In this case the board will only be used by owners of Apple II computers.  They have the original Apple product and either the original ROMs got corrupted/damaged or this option consumes less power as you select to replace a specific number of old ROM chips by a new more modern flash chip.

Mostly it will depend on whether the copyright owner wants to make a fuss about it.  It is one thing if the owner of the device makes the copy themselves, which also presents practical difficulties for enforcement, and another if they buy a copy from someone else whether they have it or not.

Quote
I am not a lawyer, so cannot give any legal advise, but that is what sounds like a logical reasoning to me.

The law and courts have nothing to do with logic or justice.
I agree
 

Offline james_s

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Re: Apple ][ ROM Replacement PCB
« Reply #10 on: May 18, 2020, 08:21:48 pm »
An easy way around this is sell the device blank and have the user put whatever ROMs on it they wish, or ask the buyer to send the ROM files they would like programmed onto it when they purchase one.

I'm surprised that the hardware is not open source, it could be reverse engineered and recreated from the photos in an afternoon if one was inclined to do so.
 

Offline deanclaxton

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Re: Apple ][ ROM Replacement PCB
« Reply #11 on: May 18, 2020, 08:28:50 pm »
Definitely a grey area, but I'm just selling the hardware. I do offer a free programming service though, so if the buyer emails me a file full of bits and bytes, I can program the flash chip ;)
 

Online Alex Eisenhut

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Re: Apple ][ ROM Replacement PCB
« Reply #12 on: May 18, 2020, 09:19:09 pm »
Well done. According to some members what you have done is almost impossible, something like the Apollo missions or building a working nuclear fusion power plant.

Very nice.  I have been doing something similar for my PET.  What we really need is Batten and Allen BA3760 Dill Leadframe (DIP PCB Edge Clip Pins).

Do suppliers carry them? They didn't last time I checked. Maybe if enough people asked for them...
*Except AC/DC adapters on eBay. Avoid them all!
 

Offline deanclaxton

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Re: Apple ][ ROM Replacement PCB
« Reply #13 on: May 18, 2020, 09:26:30 pm »
I'm surprised that the hardware is not open source, it could be reverse engineered and recreated from the photos in an afternoon if one was inclined to do so.

Yes indeed - whilst the SMD version is of my own making, I reverse engineered the schematic from a photo of a through hole version I saw on eBay - well I saw that it used 2 x 74LS138's and spent the next couple of hours looking at the Apple ][ schematic and working out how it would work. I went through a few iterations before it jelled - clever usage of the 2nd LS138 to gate the various signals and enable the chip select on the ROM (the first 74ls138 simply replaces the one you remove from the F12 position on the motherboard - that is normally used to enable the chip selects on the 6 original ROMS (not wired through on my board) plus a couple of other functions which have to remain in place). 

Original post updated to clarify.

I wanted a much smaller footprint than the throughhole versions (I think they may have been around a while?) and achieved that by using a 39SF010A flash chip (14mm tsop). At the time I also had some other boards in at JLCPCB so I thought If I could knock it off quickly I could piggy back it onto the existing order and pay very little for additional freight!

Downside of the SMD version is that you need to program the flash chip before soldering it down (though if I added a zero ohm resistor on the WE line, and wired it back to an unused pin then I could make a programming adapter).

Anyway - the concept has been around a while using 27c256 eproms - I've just put a slightly different spin on it with SMD. I'd be happy to sell bare board if anyone wants to build one themselves - might look at uploading the gerbers somewhere as well.
« Last Edit: May 18, 2020, 10:14:50 pm by deanclaxton »
 

Online TK

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Re: Apple ][ ROM Replacement PCB
« Reply #14 on: May 18, 2020, 09:41:48 pm »
Definitely a grey area, but I'm just selling the hardware. I do offer a free programming service though, so if the buyer emails me a file full of bits and bytes, I can program the flash chip ;)
If you sell the device un-programmed, how do you expect the buyer to program it without making a time consuming adapter for the EPROM/Flash programmer?
 

Offline deanclaxton

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Re: Apple ][ ROM Replacement PCB
« Reply #15 on: May 18, 2020, 09:43:36 pm »
Very nice.  I have been doing something similar for my PET.  What we really need is Batten and Allen BA3760 Dill Leadframe (DIP PCB Edge Clip Pins).

Yeah I've been looking into those. My current issue is that 0.5mm diameter pins are likely to damage the original Amphenol/RN sockets that they used on these boards. I need to find a pin header smaller if possible or look at some sort of leadframe pins.

Issue is that the "smd" leadframe pins clip around the side of the pcb - on this design that is ok for 2 sides, but the pins in the middle are an issue. I need to find leadframe pins that support through-hole.

BTW - the Batten and Allen style pins can be purchased from TE Connectivity in single quantities (B&A is MOQ 500,000 or something crazy).

The other approach I'm looking at is a couple of sacrificial dual wipe sockets that are inserted into the original Apple ones, and then the adapter plugged into those. I suspect they may have the opposite problem though - the material is too thin to make good contact with the socket underneath.
« Last Edit: May 18, 2020, 10:09:43 pm by deanclaxton »
 

Offline deanclaxton

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Re: Apple ][ ROM Replacement PCB
« Reply #16 on: May 18, 2020, 09:45:41 pm »
Definitely a grey area, but I'm just selling the hardware. I do offer a free programming service though, so if the buyer emails me a file full of bits and bytes, I can program the flash chip ;)
If you sell the device un-programmed, how do you expect the buyer to program it without making a time consuming adapter for the EPROM/Flash programmer?

Yeah it needs to be programmed up front - and we are back to the grey area again :) I guess thats the upside of eproms - maybe SMD wasnt such a great idea afterall!

Perhaps I'll stick to distributing them privately (Psssst! Buddy! Want to buy a ROM adapter?)
« Last Edit: May 18, 2020, 09:49:40 pm by deanclaxton »
 

Offline Bicurico

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Re: SMD Apple ][ ROM Replacement PCB
« Reply #17 on: May 19, 2020, 09:47:04 am »
Hi,

Nice job and I don't even own a Apple ][ in my growing vintage computer collection (mainly Commodore stuff).

I just want to contribute with these two opinions:

1) I dislike it when people ask for FREE software/hardware that someone has done! Especially when the goal was to make some money out of it. Give this man a break! He spent time designing it, got someone to produce the PCB, tested it and is now trying to sell the result. Why is this not worth some money? Why do people think others have to work for free? Plus, if it is THAT EASY, well then do your own Gerber file and publish it for the greater good.

2) I don't see Apple complaining about this one. Apple ][ rom's can be downloaded from the internet with the simplest Google search and most Apple ][ emulators actually include the roms! This board does not create a cloned Apple ][ computers nor does it take away ANY business of Apple. This board actually required the ownership of a whole Apple ][ computer, which comes with the required software license anyway. Who cares if the board was pre-programmed or not? Because of its exact motherboard fitting on two sockets simultaneously, it would not work on a cloned version of the Apple computer. I think it can leagally be considered a REPLACEMENT PART, no matter if it contains software logic, since the software already is licensed for any target computer of this board and the board itself is useless if such an Apple ][ computer is not provided. Add to this that a regular user cannot extract the software from the board.

My advice to deanclaxton is to sell the unit with peace of mind and without feeling any pressure to make any part of the design public. Yes, you reverse engineered the principle of existing designs from their pictures (hardly illegal to look at a picture and learn from it), but you did not simply clone them. You made a different product and you have every right to claim compensation for your work.

Regards,
Vitor
 
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Offline james_s

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Re: SMD Apple ][ ROM Replacement PCB
« Reply #18 on: May 19, 2020, 05:59:43 pm »
1) I dislike it when people ask for FREE software/hardware that someone has done! Especially when the goal was to make some money out of it. Give this man a break! He spent time designing it, got someone to produce the PCB, tested it and is now trying to sell the result. Why is this not worth some money? Why do people think others have to work for free? Plus, if it is THAT EASY, well then do your own Gerber file and publish it for the greater good.


I do just that, I always release hardware that I design as open source if it's something that I think others would actually want. That doesn't mean you give away everything for free, that's not how open source works. Take Dave's uCurrent for example, it's open source, does that stop people from buying them? Doesn't seem to, most people would rather buy a finished, tested product and do just that. Even I was going to do that, the only reason I built one myself is that at the time I went to order one they were out of stock.

I promote open source because I believe in the model, I contribute to the community and encourage others to do the same. That doesn't mean a person can't/shouldn't try to sell something they've taken the time to design, but I'm far more likely to support something if the design is available, I just don't have much interest in closed/proprietary products and will choose the open design every time given the option. The OP is of course entitled to do as he wishes, it's his design and my Apple II is working fine with the original ROMs still so it's not something I need anyway.
 

Offline deanclaxton

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Re: SMD Apple ][ ROM Replacement PCB
« Reply #19 on: May 19, 2020, 10:09:24 pm »
1) I dislike it when people ask for FREE software/hardware that someone has done! Especially when the goal was to make some money out of it. Give this man a break! He spent time designing it, got someone to produce the PCB, tested it and is now trying to sell the result. Why is this not worth some money? Why do people think others have to work for free? Plus, if it is THAT EASY, well then do your own Gerber file and publish it for the greater good.


I do just that, I always release hardware that I design as open source if it's something that I think others would actually want. That doesn't mean you give away everything for free, that's not how open source works. Take Dave's uCurrent for example, it's open source, does that stop people from buying them? Doesn't seem to, most people would rather buy a finished, tested product and do just that. Even I was going to do that, the only reason I built one myself is that at the time I went to order one they were out of stock.

I promote open source because I believe in the model, I contribute to the community and encourage others to do the same. That doesn't mean a person can't/shouldn't try to sell something they've taken the time to design, but I'm far more likely to support something if the design is available, I just don't have much interest in closed/proprietary products and will choose the open design every time given the option. The OP is of course entitled to do as he wishes, it's his design and my Apple II is working fine with the original ROMs still so it's not something I need anyway.

Totally understand James - I'm not ruling out releasing the gerbers - I just want to make it as good as it can be before I do so. I've had some great feedback and have a couple of features that I will add to it first, and then re-evaluate :) Not everyone has a 14mm tsop32 programing adapter - to purchase one is more than the cost of the assembled product (at least the one I purchased certainly was)!
 

Offline deanclaxton

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Re: SMD Apple ][ ROM Replacement PCB
« Reply #20 on: May 23, 2020, 09:06:04 am »
Respun the PCB to support 8 ROM Images and re-programmability in an EPROM programmer via an adapter (rev was actually increased to 1 on the files sent for production, plus legend slightly updated versus the one below):





Also did an external switch board, and gave the project a name.



An 8 position rotary octal switch was suggested, and I might swap out the switches for one if I can find one of a decent physical size - most seem tiny.
PCB's are on order :D
« Last Edit: May 23, 2020, 09:10:15 am by deanclaxton »
 


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