MikesArcade.com Coin-op Video Arcade Technical Information Archive
  Home  |  Repair Logs  |  Game Manuals  |  Monitor Manuals  |  Online Store  |  Links  |  Contact Us
Technical Info
  Repair Logs
  Pacman fixes
  Manuals & Schematics
  Monitor Manuals
  Nintendo Game List
  Nintendo Joysticks
  Nintendo Buttons
  Data I/O Promlink 6.10
Spies Wiretap Archives
  Coin-op Video Game List
  Game Conversions
  The Mixed Bag
  PCB Pinouts and DIPs
PDF Game Artwork
  Coin door inserts, etc.
  Instructions cards
  Operation Sheets
  Control Panel & Bezels
  Title Strip Creator
  Component markings...
  Crating a game
  Build your own cabinet
Board Upgrades
  Double Donkey Kong
  Items I'm looking for
  Contact Us
  Valid HTML 4.01!

PARTS FOR SIMPLE CONVERSION: Rip Off (RO) control panel and RO (or Star
			     Castle (SC)) motherboard.  A SC (or RO) sound
			     board.  9 pin molex connectors (plus 8 male
			     pins and 1 female pin) to power each of the
			     sound boards.  One 9 pin molex connector
			     (plus 1 male pin and 8 femail pins) to tap into
			     the cabinets power to the sound board.  A single
			     ribbon cable with enough connectors to hook up
			     all the sound boards and the motherboard together.
			     A switch with at least 5 poles (preferably 12
			     poles) and one position for each game you plan
			     to have in the cabinet.  See the below note
			     about extra parts if you plan to use 5 poles.
			     Current limitting resistor.

NOTE:	For more complex conversions, you can start with any cabinet, an Armor
	Attack (AA) mother board plus any RO, SC, AA or Solar Quest (SQ) sound
	boards you'd like your cabinet to play.  Because your EPROMS do not
	fit in the 24 pin motherboard socket, you'll either need to use
	wirewrap sockets or bend the pins upward so inappropriate pins don't
	go into the wrong place in the motherboard socket.  A switch from an
	A-B-C-D box will have enough poles and positions to support your
	complex conversion.  If you intend putting the volume pot back on
	the sound board (meaning you will need less poles than usual), you'll
        need some 10K and 100 ohm pots and 100mF capacitors.

NOTE:   The board set should be positioned like this on a metal plate:

		|parellel conn->====    X          |
		|power connector(MOLEX)-^          |
		|                          ^       |
		|      sound board        TOP      |
		|                    <-LEFT RIGHT->|
		|                        BOTTOM    |
		|                          V       |

	|            =======    ====    =======             XXX    |
	|            ^             ^          ^             XXX    |
	|            |             |          |              ^     |
	|            |             |          |              |     |
	|            |             |          |              |     |
	|            |             |          |              |     |
	|          monitor    sound board control panel    power   |
	|         connector    connector    connector    connector |
	|         (parellel)   (parellel)   (parellel)    (MOLEX)  |
	|  __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __                                 |
	|  | V | | V | | V | | V |                                 |
	|  |   | |   | |   | |   |                                 |
	|  |U7 | |T7 | |R7 | |P7 |                                 |
	|  |   | |   | |   | |   |                                 |
	|  |___| |___| |___| |___|                                 |
	|    ^    ^    ^     ^                           ^         |
	|    |    |2716|     |                           |         |
	|    |____EPROMs_____|                          TOP        |
	|                          mother board    <-LEFT RIGHT->  |
	|                                              BOTTOM      |
	|                                                |         |
	|                                                V         |
	|                                                          |
	|                                                          |

NOTE:	Please see the Cinematronics history to get a background in differences
	between the RO/SC hardware and the AA/SQ hardware.  You'll note that
	no references are made to older Cinematronic games like, Space Wars,
	Star Hawk, Tail Gunner and Warriors, because the hardware for these
	games while almost exactly similar to the RO/SC/AA/SQ hardware does
	use different addresssing and sometimes different EPROMs.  As such,
	only RO/SC/AA/SQ lend themselves to the EPROM conversions described

1) Burn the U7 RO into both the lower and upper half of a 2732 EPROMs for
   later use in the RO motherboard.  For more complex conversion, use 27128s
   (which have four more pins than the 2716 or 2732) in wirewrap sockets (so
   you have room to solder connections in tight quarters) since 27128s can hold
   all four games!  Plug the EPROM (or in the complex conversion the EPROM in
   the wirewrap socket) in to the U7 socket on the RO motherboard, and power
   up the cabinet.  You'll see RO playing, even though you don't have the
   original 2716 RO EPROM plugged in!  The 2732 with two copies of the 2716
   RO EPROM is doing the same job!!

	Lesson: Both the 2716 and 2732 can be used in the same sockets of a
                RO motherboard since they both have 24 pins, but to make the
		2732 you need two copies of the games, so that it doesn't
		matter what value is on the high address line of the 2732.

	Lesson: For 27128s, use 28-pin wirewrap sockets.  Position the
		wirewrap socket above the 2716 socket in the AA mother board
		so that the extra four pins are in between the AA mother board
		socket and the mother board's connectors.  Now shove the
		wirewrap socket into the 2716 socket so that all the wirewrap's
		pins go into the mother boards 2716 socket (except for the
		wirewrap pin that would go into the 2716 socket's Vcc and A11
		of the 27128 which would go into the 2716's four pin from the
		top on the right side).  See the next paragraph about how
		to power up the 27128 properly so that the AA mother board
		can read the two copies of the RO that you placed in it!

		You'll have to shove hard, since the 2716 socket was never
		meant to take a wirewrap socket!  You'll probably think you'll
		break the mother board if you shove as hard as you need.  The
		wirewrap socket will not jiggle if you've shoved it in properly.
		Regarding the four extra pins on the 27128 and the pin that
		would have gone into the 2716 Vcc, tie the 27128 Vcc
		to the 27128 Vpp and the 27128 !PGM...or rephrased tie the
		uppermost left pin of the 27128 wirewrap socket to the two
		uppermost right pins on the 27128 wirewrap socket.
		Tie the other pins together (A12 and A13 which are located
		third from the top of the 27128 wirewrap socket's right side,
		and second from the top of the 27128 wirewrap socket's left side)
		and ground them.  Now your ready to go!

	NOTE: All +5v (called Vcc) must go through a current limitting resistor.

2) Now that you've swapped a single EPROM, the next step is replacing all
   four of the EPROMs on the RO mother board with your own EPROMs. For the
   simpler coversion of RO -> RO + SC or SC -> SC + RO you can use a RO
   mother board with its simple addressing.

	Lesson: Before we proceed you'll need to learn a little about
		Cinematronics addresses their memory.  Any conversion other
		than a RO -> RO + SC or SC -> SC + RO will need the fancier
		addressing on the AA mother board (because AA or SQ needs
		double the memory used in RO or SC) and will require the
		wirewrap sockets using EPROMs larger than 2732s since the only
		two games that can fit on 2732 are the smaller games, RO and SC.

	Lesson:	If you do the advanced conversion, you'll need to use
		multiple copies of the smaller game's code to trick the
		fancier addressing on the AA mother board to get the
		correct instruction.  By having multiple copies available
                for the upper address line to select, we insure that no
                matter what random value is on the upper address line
                a copy of the smaller game's code will be found and the
                correct instruction from within this copy be found!  This
                "trick" wouldn't work unless all Cinemattronic games had
                2K, 4K or 8K memory...thus you can put copies in until you
                have the correct size for memory space!
   Back to the simpler conversion.  Take four 2732's and burn an image of the
   SC code in the top half followed by an image of the RO code.  Make sure to
   put SC's code in SC 2716 (labelled U7) and RO's code in RO 2716 (labelled U7)
   into your new Starrip 2732 (probably also labelled U7).  Do the same for T7,
   R7 and P7 using the respective SC and RO 2716s T7, R7 and P7.  Now bend pin
   20 (if the 2732's notch is facing up, then pin 20 is fourth down from the top
   on the right side) upward so that it won't go into the socket and attach a
   single wire to all four EPROMs.  Temporarily tie this wire to the +5v being
   supplied to the 2732, and insert all four 2732s into the RO mother board.
   Power up the cabinet, and you'll see RO playing again!  If you flip the
   diagnostic dipswitch (dipswitch 7) and ground the wire, you'll see SC
   playing, though unless you swap in a SC sound board, you'll not hear SC
   playing...just screaching.

   NOTE: You may want to leave plenty of spare wire since later you'll also
   connect this wire to a switch on the control panel AND E4 pin 13 on the
   RO mother board.

	Lesson: The following diagram shows the optimal memory lay out
		for fitting all four games on 27128s for an AA mother board.
		Note that since 27128s and 2764s use the same packaging
		(28 pins), you might as well use the below even if you
		just want to do a simple RO -> RO + AA conversion.  

		A13 A12	NOR (feeds Dipswitch 7 at E4 pin 13)
		--- --- ---
		0   0	0	|     SC     |<-----NOTE: A11 will randomly
				|____________|    |       sellect one of these
				|     SC     |<---        two copies of SC.
		0   1	0	|            |
				|     SQ     |
				|            |
		1   0	0	|            |
				|     AA     |
				|            |
		1   1	1	|     RO     |<-----NOTE: A11 will randomly
				|____________|    |       sellect one of these
				|     RO     |<---        two copies of RO.

		NOTE: The above images fill the whole 27128.  Just like
		      in the simple conversion, you'll need 4 27128s and
		      you'll be putting the respective U7 images on the
		      27128 U7.

		It may seem strange to put RO at the end, but when you
		have to handle the diagnostic dip switch incompatibility
                (dipswitch 7) mentioned below, then it'll become apparent
		why RO is always at the end of the address space.

	Lesson:	Wirewrap sockets don't liked to be shoved into regular
		sockets, so they are constantly popping out.  If any one
		does pop out, then the game will pop the circuit breakers
		because the mother board won't have the instructions it
		needs to display a picture.  You may want to consider just
		shoving the 27128s in, and bending all the pins upward to
		connect the high address lines and power...but you'll find
		you have problems fitting all those wires in to such a
		small space!
	NOTE: All +5v (called Vcc) must go through a current limitting resistor.

3) Diagnostic dipswitch logic allows RO and any other Cinematronics
   game to be played WITHOUT having to open the back of the machine and
   flip dipswitch 7.  In the simple conversion, all that has to be done
   is that the wire that controls the high address line to the 2732s also
   has to be connected to the dipswitch 7 at the E4 chip pin 13 on the
   motherboard.  To find E4 (since many boards are not marked) start at
   the molex connector (there's only one on the motherboard) and go down
   two rows and left five chips.  If E4's notch is facing up, then pin 13
   is 4th down on the right side.  Because you can't easily solder to a
   particular pin (and you don't have the option of bending the pin upwards)
   you may just want to attach a small clip lead to the pin and the other
   end of the clip lead to the wire for the hight address line.

	Lesson: Because there are two high address lines that allow us
		to select any one of the four games in the 27128, we'll
		need to make use of spare gates on the AA mother board to
		provide the NORed result to dipswitch 7.  The 7432 at K2
		will OR together the two high address lines, and the 7404
		at I2 will NOT the signal giving us a NOR to apply to E4.
		So connect A13 to K2 pin 1 and A12 to K2 pin 2 and feed
		the result at K2 pin 3 to I2 pin 5.  Finally, feed the
		result at I2 pin 6 to E4 pin 13 and now you won't have
		to switch dipswitch 7 depending on what game is being played!

   Now the motherboard will see 1 for RO's case and 0 in all other cases.
   UP E4!  As explanation on why dipswitch 7 must be left open, in a normally
   operating RO closing dipswitch 7 connects ground to E4....and if E4 is
   connected to +5v (because the high address line must ve +5v to select RO)
   then you've just shorted the +5v to ground!

4) Now that we have the conversion operational at the motherboard level, we'll
   turn our attentions to the "perperals", the easiest being the control panel.
   The control panel for Cinematronics games can be shared with only the most
   minimal switching.  In fact, RO and AA share the same controls.  The only
   time you need to "switch" the input from the controls is when two different
   buttons are connected to the same input.  The reason you need to "break"
   this is because pushing one button would cause both button to be grounded at
   the same time indicating to the motherboard that both buttons were pushed!

   The easiest way to figure out where to use switching is to draw a diagram
   of each control panel, and then to draw lines between all the common
   buttons AND all the buttons with the same input number.  Below is RO and SC:


	 __	 __	 __	 __	 __	 __	 __	 __	 __
	( 0)	( 2)	( 4)	( 5)	( 1)	(12)	(14) 	(15)	(13)
         --	 --	 --	 --	 --	 --	 --	 --	 --
	  |	  |	  |	  |	 __	  |\      |
	  |	  |	  |	  |	( 3)	  | \     |
	  |	  |	  |	  |	 --	  |  \    |
	  |	  |	  |	  |	   	  |   \   |
	  |	  |	  |	  |	   	  |   \   |
	  |	  |	  |	  |	   	  |   \   |
	  |	  |	  |	  |	   	  |   \   |
	  |	  |	  |	  |	   	  |    \  |
	 __	 __	 __	 __		 __	\__
	( 0)	( 2)	( 6)	( 8)		(10)	(12)
	 --	 --	 --	 --		 --	 --



   While you can't break any of the vertical lines (since they represent the
   same physical button, you can break any diagnal line using the switch.  Just
   connect the output of the switch to input line 12 of the control panel, and
   RO P1 LEFT button to one input of the switch and the RO P1 RIGHT (=SC FIRE)
   button to the other input of the switch.  Then when the switch is set for RO,
   pushing RO P1 LEFT will ground input line 12 (and not also RO P2 RIGHT), and
   when the switch is set for SC, pushing RO P1 RIGHT(=SC FIRE) will ground
   input line 12 (and not also RO P1 LEFT(=SC THRUST))! You can connect RO P2
   THRUST to input line 6 (gives you SC LEFT), RO P2 FIRE to input line 8
   (gives you SC RIGHT) and RO P1 LEFT to input line 10 (gives you SC THRUST).
   So now your control panel is wired for both games!!  If you were starting
   with a SC control panel, you'd have to drill a few extra holes to add some
   buttons for player 2, but you could still use the above procedure to figure
   out where to switch control panel input lines.

   Keep in mind that the P1 and P2 Start are not used during game play, and
   as such you don't have to worry about these buttons being accidentally
   pushed with another button that controls the player's ship.  However, the
   P1 and P2 start buttons could be a part of a string of connected lines
   that inadvertantly cause a player's button to accidentally push another
   players button...and in this case you'd have to break the string of
   connected lines with switching.

	Lesson: Underneath the control panel is a small 1" by 2" piece of
		PCB with no chips on it.  This serves as a patch panel for
		all control panel and coin door function, and here (and on
		the actual control panel buttons) is where you should make
		any modification.

	Lesson: Because RO and AA have the same control panel, most complex
		conversions will be as easy as the simple conversion.  However,
		if you are intersted in adding SQ, then you'll need to switch
		three input lines!  Input line 1 will need to switch between
		RO/AA P1 START and SQ FIRE, since RO/AA P1 START is positioned
		at the same place SQ NUKE is (and you can't break the link
		if the buttons are linked because they share a button)!  Input
		line 2 will need switch between RO/AA P1 RIGHT and SQ
		HYPERSPACE.  Then like above, you'll need to handle input
		line 12 for RO and SC, and connect up the rest of the buttons
		to the correct input line.  Below is layout for this combo
		control panel, though it certainly isn't the best layout!

SC:                     LEFT   RIGHT          THRUST    FIRE
	 __	 __	 __	 __	 __	 __	 __	 __	 __
	( 0)	( 2)	( 4)	( 5)	( 1)	(12)	(14) 	(15)	(13)
         --	 --	 --	 --	 --	 --	 --	 --	 --

					( 3)

	NOTE: If you mess up for any reason, then the ship in the game will
	      either not do anything at all when you push a button or it
              will try to do two things at once when you push a button.
	      Thankfully, this mess up is not catastrophic, and you just
	      need to go in and recheck that you did things correctly.

4) The last perpheral you will need to handle in your conversion is the
   sound board...and it will take the majority of poles on your switch!
   A sound board has 9 leads of which 5 are power, 2 are to the speaker
   and 2 are to the volume pot on the coin door.  For the simple conversion
   I suggest switching all 9 leads to the sound board, since anything short
   of this takes some technical expertise (and modifications to every sound
   board you will be using in the conversion)!  However, if you do not have
   enough poles on the switch you are using for your simple conversion then
   you may have to consider these more complex conversion possibilities since
   they would cut down the number of poles you need for the sound board to four.

   NOTE: You may want to physically seperate the high voltage power connections
	 (like +25v and -25v) from the volume and speaker connections, since
	 any crosstalk would result in speaker static!  This is not necessary,
	 just a recommendation.

   All your sound boards need to be connected with a single ribbon cable with
   enough connectors to plug into all sound boards and the mother board.  You
   are essentially making a bus for the digital signals going to the sound
   board and controlling which sound board receives the signals by switching
   power to the one board you'd like to produce sound.

	Lesson: If you look at the schematic for the sound board, you'll
		notice that the volume pot for the sound board is remoted
		on the coin door.  If you simply connected the two pins
		on the sound board for the volume pot (3 and 8) together
		via a 10K pot (with the last lead on the pot grounded),
		then you wouldn't have to switch pins 1 (goes to ground),
		3 and 8 on the sound board.  If you ground one side of
		the speaker, then you wouldn't have to switch pin 5.  And
		finally, if you tie all the sound board's grounds together
		(pin 7) then you wouldn't have to switch that either!  This
		would leave you switching +5v, +25v, -25v and speaker!!
		And if you only hand to switch one control panel input lead,
		then you'd only need a five pole switch (or a couple of two
		pole switches)!!!

	NOTE: If your sound boards each have a volume pot, then you will be
	      be able to set each sound board to the volume you desire...
	      and given how loud AA is relative to the other games, you'll
	      appreciate this feature!

	NOTE: You may want to put a 100mF capacitor in series with each pots
	      output to clean up the signal.  Another enhancement might be
	      a single 100 ohm pots right before the speaker.


5) The optimal dipswitch setting (that maximizes number of ships, individual
   scores and free play) is below

	OFF    ON
	| _____ | _
     1	| |  X| |  |
	|  ---  |  |
	| _____ |  |-- maximum (or real close to max) ships for all but RO
     2	| |X  | | _|
	|  ---  |
	| _____ |
     3	| |  X| | - credits
	|  ---  |
	| _____ | _
     4	| |  X| |  |
	|  ---  |  |
	| _____ |  |-- SQ max ships, AA attract sound
     5	| |  X| | _|
	|  ---  |
	| _____ |
     6	| |  X| | - SQ free play and has RO display individual scores
	|  ---  |
	| _____ |
     7	| |X  | | - diagnostics should be OFF because dipswitch logic handles
	|  ---  |   this

	NOTE: Further connections to E4 could tailor the dipswitches more
	      to each particular game if desired!  If you have the extra
	      poles on the switch then they could be used in this way!!

6) Because SQ uses a mirror to show the screen to the player, all the writing
   is backwards (however since you still spin clockwise vs counterclockwise
   turning is preserved).  By inserting an sturdy double-pole, double-throw
   toggle switch in wires that feed the X deflection, you can swap the two
   signals and reverse the image.  THIS CAN BE QUITE DANGEROUS, SO BE CAREFUL
   ELECTRON BEAM!!!  Below is a diagram for this:
         one set of poles
             /\ V   V   V
  the --> -=/  \_________\
  toggle   /   /| __|___|/
  switch   \  /__X____  /   <----bottom of toggle switch
              ^   ^   ^
        another  set of poles

   Where the X appears in the diagram is where the signals are being switched
   to produce the mirror image of the mirror SQ image.  On the other side we
   have the regulare signal being sent to the monitor for RO, SC and AA.

7) Two conveniences are a credit button on the coin door and velcro patches
   on the screen and on the overlays for quick alignment when switching games.
   To add the credit button drill a hole in the coin door and put a normally-
   open, normally closed, three pole switch.  Because all credit switches
   must be in series, make sure to connect the a wire from the game's credit
   switch's normally-closed pole to your credit button's normally-closed pole.
   Neither of these poles on these switches will register continuity with the
   common pole.  Then connect the normally-open pole for each of the switches
   together, and finally connect the common pole of each switch together.  The
   game times the closure of these switches, so to "trick" the game you may
   have to push your credit button several times to get the right timing and
   trick the game into thinking that you just dropped a quarter in it.

8) AA -> RO solderless, swap conversion.  Burn 2732s with two copies of RO
   and put these EPROMs in the AA motherboard.  Flip dipswitch 7 to OFF.
   Plug the RO sound board where the AA sound board use to be.  Remove
   the AA overlay and power up your RO games!!  Since both games use the
   same control panel, you don't need to change anything!!

8) AA -> SQ solderless, swap conversion.  Burn 2732s with one copy of SQ
   and put these EPROMs in the AA motherboard.  Plug the SQ sound board
   where the AA sound board use to be.  Remove the AA overlay and
   power up your SQ games!!  Since the SQ control panel is a little
   different, you'll probably find it difficult to play.  In addition to
   this, the screen is a mirror image...see above for a way to fix this.

9) RO -> SC swap conversion.  Burn 2716s with one copy of SC and put these
   EPROMs in the RO motherboard.  Flip dipswitch 7 to OFF and plug in the
   SC sound board where the RO sound board use to be.  Add the SC overlay
   if desired.  Move input line 12 to RO P1 RIGHT.  You can connect RO P2
   THRUST to input line 6 (gives you SC LEFT), RO P2 FIRE to input line 8
   (gives you SC RIGHT) and P1 LEFT to input line 10 (gives you SC THRUST).
   Power up the game and play some SC!

10) AA -> RO + AA conversion.  Burn 2764s with one copy of AA and two copies
    of RO.  Using a switch with one pole, control the high address line of
    the 2764's and the diagnostic dipswitch as described in the RO -> RO +
    SC conversion at the beginning of this FAQ.  Plug in the desired sound
    board and put on the AA overlay if appropriate.  Set the switch for the
    game you want to play and power up the game!  Since AA and RO use the
    same control panel, you don't have to make any control panel modifications.


Home  |  Online Store  |  Repair Logs  |  Manuals and Schematics  |  Monitor Manuals  |  Component Markings  |  Links

All Content Copyright © 2000-2017 by MikesArcade.com