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Topic: ROM-Reader for Super Nintendo / Super Famicom Game Cartridges (Read 198024 times) previous topic - next topic


Both SD modules are fine. The blue full-size SD module is missing the voltage level translator chip but it still works. The microSD module has the level translator chip but obviously, you can't fit a full-size SD into it. That's why in my video I move all the parts from the microSD module to a custom made PCB. But you don't have to do that.
The microSD module just plugs into the 6 pin header as shown in your image.

From my tests, the full-size SD cards are faster in combination with the Arduino but that might be just because of the SD cards I personally have myself.

I have no plans to add support for more eproms or flashroms since I currently don't have much free time. But it shouldn't be all too hard to add support yourself since more often than not different chips are just slight variations of the chips already supported. The 27C801 as example seems to only differs in size, bus width and pinout compared to the 27C322. The actual programming algorithm is basically the same.


Some updates:

I have written code to flash a N64 Gameshark in case it's bricked or just for updating if it doesn't have a parallel port.

And I also have compiled a parts list for 10 Cart Readers(without battery addon) for ~$300 which brings the price per Cart Reader down to $30 thanks to falling prices, economy of scale and the Winter Sale on Aliexpress right now.

Perfect for a group buy, a retro community or a maker space. One of you needs a 3d printer and one a PIC programmer.


Nice work sanni!

I sent you some GS files to test. ;)


I ran into a strange issue just now attempting to dump my collection of GBA games.

My cart reader is on the latest version of it's firmware at the time of this post, version V2.6 from Jan 18, 2019.

I tried dumping all of the GBA games I have, both the cartridge and save, and then loaded them in an emulator to check that everything was working, and two games had an issue. The first and second Castlevania games for the GBA (Castlevania: Circle of the Moon and Castlevania: Harmony of Dissonance) had an empty save.

I tried plugging the physical carts into my GBA to check, and the save data was gone there too. I was testing Harmony of Dissonance a few minutes before dumping all of them and saw that the save data was still intact, so it wasn't the save battery having died.

I had backed up my GBA collection years ago using a homebrew application on my Nintendo DS to dump a GBA cartridge's ROM and save data to a SD card, so I dug up those old files and attempted to restore my old save from there using this cart reader, and it worked.

I tried testing it and it seems that any attempt to dump either the cartridge's ROM or save erases the save on the cart and dumps a blank save, although it dumps the rom just fine. It also is able to restore the save from a different source just fine too.

I don't have many GBA games, only about a dozen or so, but these seemed to be the only two games effected. I thought maybe it's an issue with GBA games that use SRAM to save, since those games were uncommon, but the third Castlevania game (which I think is SRAM, but not certain) kept it's save when I dumped it, as did other GBA games that use SRAM like Wario Land 4.


Thanks for the bug report. Does the save also get erased if you just load up the Cart Reader's GBA menu without actually reading the rom or save?


Thanks for the bug report. Does the save also get erased if you just load up the Cart Reader's GBA menu without actually reading the rom or save?
Yes it does, I tried testing it and that is the part where it appears to erase the save. I tried putting both carts in and just going to the GBA menu without doing anything, and the saves were erased again.

Furthermore, I tried then restoring my save, and without exiting the GBA menu dumping the ROM and save, and this time it both dumped the save correctly and didn't erase it from the cart. So it seems it's entering the GBA menu that's erasing the save of these two games, and not the actual process of dumping the ROM or save itself.


Could you try if it also erases the save if you just turn on the Cart Reader without actually going into the GBA submenu. Just let it sit on the Cart Reader's main menu for a while and then turn it off again.


To clarify, by "GBA Submenu" do you mean the menu where it's asking you to choose between Gameboy, Gameboy Advance, or GB Memory?

Or do you mean after choosing GBA where it's asking you to read the rom, read the save, restore save, etc?

I tried leaving it at the GB/GBA/GB Memory menu for a bit and nothing happened.

But as soon as I enter the GBA menu and it displays information about the connected cartridge is when the save seems to get erased.

From what I can tell, this screen is the exact moment it seems to get erased, the save remains on the cart until before this screen, and as soon as I see this screen, even if I turn the reader off and don't press any button to go to the next screen, seems to be when the save is erased:


Could you please comment out this line and see if it still erases the save?

This time it should not list the name of the cartridge or any other info.


With that line commented out the information screen still appeared, just all the information in it was empty or listed as "unknown", the save was still erased as soon as that screen was displayed.


Okay, now also comment setROM_GBA(); out and try again, it will still display "unknown" but the question is will it still erase the save.
void setup_GBA() {

  // Print start page


With the setROM_GBA() line commented out the saves on the cart were no longer erased, although of course I could no longer dump the cart and save.


Ok, luckily setROM_GBA() is only a small function so finding the bug in there shouldn't be too hard.  :)

So as a first try I would just test if changing the order of the operations fixes the issue.
Could you please change it like so and try again, the stuff we changed in my previous posts needs to be reverted to stock again ofc:

void setROM_GBA() {
 // Set Control Pins to Output CS_SRAM(PH0) CS_ROM(PH3) WR(PH5) RD(PH6)
  // CLK is N/C and IRQ is conected to GND inside the cartridge
  DDRH |= (1 << 0) | (1 << 3) | (1 << 5) | (1 << 6);
  // Output a high signal on CS_SRAM(PH0) CS_ROM(PH3) WR(PH5) RD(PH6)
  // At power-on all the control lines are high/disabled
  PORTH |= (1 << 0)  | (1 << 3) | (1 << 5) | (1 << 6);

  // Set address/data pins to OUTPUT
  // AD0-AD7
  DDRF = 0xFF;
  // AD8-AD15
  DDRK = 0xFF;
  // AD16-AD23
  DDRC = 0xFF;



Swapping those two sets of operations doesn't seem to have had any effect, save is still erased.

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