(Topic ID: 7260)

ROM burners - anyone got recommendations?


By DrAzzy

7 years ago



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  • 129 posts
  • 67 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 80 days ago by G-P-E
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    There are 129 posts in this topic. You are on page 1 of 3.
    #1 7 years ago

    If I were to buy a ROM burner, to write the game ROMs for pinball machines (WPC era) - what would people recommend I buy? I know there are some people here with burners, so I was hoping for some advice.

    #3 7 years ago

    I've read great things about this one, but it's kind of pricey ...

    http://secure.transtronics.com/osc/product_info.php/cPath/55/products_id/621

    ROM_burner.jpg

    #4 7 years ago

    This. I have the older version from these guys, and I know someone who bought the newer. Good reasonable burner.

    Quoted from Cliffy:

    GQ-USB 4x

    http://www.mcumall.com/comersus/store/comersus_viewItem.asp?idProduct=4312

    Blows my old Needhams out of the water by speed and price.

    #5 7 years ago

    I also have a GQ-4x. For pins, it probably does everything you'll ever need. Make sure you also pick up a UV eraser. Mcumall gave me a $5 discount when I ordered a GQ-4x and eraser from them at the same time (I had to email and ask.)

    #6 7 years ago

    USB GQ-4X does everything I need also for around $100.00 can't beat it

    #7 7 years ago

    How easy is something like the GQ-4x to use? For someone like me who has no experience with such devices, could I download the ROM files from IPDB and burn them fairly easily, or is there a steep learning curve?

    #8 7 years ago
    Quoted from gweempose:

    How easy is something like the GQ-4x to use? For someone like me who has no experience with such devices, could I download the ROM files from IPDB and burn them fairly easily, or is there a steep learning curve?

    Here's the steps if you are reusing an EPROM. If I forget something someone will surely correct me.
    -Download the ROM code. Planetary Pinball has it for WMS stuff, Stern has DE and Sega. A lot of other stuff can be found at IPDB.
    -Look at the EPROM to see who is the manufacturer and what size it is.
    -Verify that the EPROM is the right size for the update. Check the file's size, see the readme.txt file in the update. Some updates require a larger EPROM.
    -In the programmer's software, select the type of EPROM you will be using (by manufacturer and size/model). It shows you how to insert it into the programmer.
    -I now read the old code off the EPROM before erasing it and save a copy of the old ROM just in case.
    -Erase the EPROM in a UV eraser. You may have to peel off the sticker to expose the window.
    -Put the EPROM back in the programmer, see if it is blank (blank check). If not, back to the eraser. Repeat, rinse hands, wipe hands on pants.
    -Next open the new ROM file you downloaded.
    -Program the EPROM (You can use auto mode, it programs then verifies the write).
    -Remove the EPROM, put it in the game (in the correct orientation), you are done.

    #9 7 years ago

    Thanks! Those are great step-by-step instructions. I think I may take the plunge and order a GQ-4x.

    #10 7 years ago

    Thought I'd throw this out there if any one interested.....

    ebay.com link » True Usb Gq 4x Eprom Chip Burner Programmer 29f400

    6 months later
    #12 7 years ago

    Great thread. It's really helped me out.

    I hope you guys don't mind me bring it to the top?

    #13 7 years ago

    I also have a GQ-4x it works great it even works with win7 64 bit.

    #14 7 years ago

    Just would like to hear opinions here. If you are in the pinball hobby do you think you should have one of these burners? Obviously EM collectors wouldn't need one.

    Bill in Indiana

    #15 7 years ago
    Quoted from gweempose:

    I've read great things about this one, but it's kind of pricey ...
    http://secure.transtronics.com/osc/product_info.php/cPath/55/products_id/621

    Attachments
    ROM_burner.jpg (54.6 KB, 0 downloads) 6 months old

    I have a Pocket Programmer. Never given me a minutes trouble. Probably overkill if you are just going to use once in a while.

    #16 7 years ago

    I use a PP2. I program more ROMS in a month than most people will program in a lifetime. It's a good, solid programmer.

    But, the PP2 hasn't been manufactured for a couple years now

    #17 7 years ago

    This is the one I bought, and I'm very happy with it. Very easy to use. I went with this one, as it's half the cost of the GQ-4x, and I'm not using it a lot.

    ebay.com link » Top853 Usb Universal Programmer Eprom Mcu Gal Pic

    Post edited by ThePostmaster : Added info

    Only major problem, if you want to call it that, is the software isn't comparable (yet) with Windows 7 64 bit edition. I hook it up to my laptop (Windows XP SP3) anyways, and it works great.

    #18 7 years ago
    Quoted from BillinIndiana:

    If you are in the pinball hobby do you think you should have one of these burners?

    It depends on how many games you go through and if you put a priority on having the latest code. I based my decision on a couple factors. One is how many games I've owned and probably will own in the future. I like to have updated code, so the programmer will probably pay for itself. The other factor is that I repair boards and games for others.

    #19 7 years ago
    Quoted from stangbat:

    It depends on how many games you go through

    That's kinda what I was thinking.. I've only replaced maybe 4 ROMs so far.. I guess I could look at it as that was $40 I could have put towards my own Burner, but still I'm "small fries" when it comes to machine turnover.. I've never sold one, I keep them all.

    #20 7 years ago

    I have a TOP853 that i got on ebay, works great, easy to use and comes with all the software.

    #21 7 years ago

    Where do you pick up the blank ROM's or do you erase and burn onto the originals?

    #22 7 years ago
    Quoted from BillinIndiana:

    Where do you pick up the blank ROM's or do you erase and burn onto the originals?

    You can use the originals, but I'd recommend backing it up before you burn the new file to it. You can also pick up used blank EPROMS pretty cheap on eBay.

    FYI, since this thread, I purchased a GQ-4x that I've used many times now. It's a solid burner that I would highly recommend. It's fast, easy to use, and relatively inexpensive. What more can you ask for?

    #23 7 years ago
    Quoted from BillinIndiana:

    Where do you pick up the blank ROM's or do you erase and burn onto the originals?

    If you are learning and starting off, I'd get some spare, used, new, eproms to mess around with. If you erase your old eproms and then corrupt them or whatever then you ave no backup. Better to burn a new Version, make sure it works and then either erase the old eproms or whatever.

    #24 7 years ago
    Quoted from gweempose:

    I've read great things about this one, but it's kind of pricey ...
    http://secure.transtronics.com/osc/product_info.php/cPath/55/products_id/621

    Attachments ROM_burner.jpg (54.6 KB, 0 downloads) 6 months old

    I have this pocket programmer. I like of a lot.

    5 months later
    #25 6 years ago

    Need some advice on programming, gave it a shot yesterday with no luck.

    -Bought 32 pin EPROM chips (ST M27C2001) 2Mb
    -Used a GQ-4x, software installed no problem
    -Placed the chip in the programmer, bottom position, locked it in with the little lever
    -Selected the manufacturer first, then model # of the chip
    -Blank checked, ok
    -Chose the new ROM, Demo Man L4 (398 Kb), programmed, took about a minute, ok
    -Verified, ok
    -Placed a sticker on the chip over the window
    -Installed in Demo Man, everything powered up, heard the chime but would not boot
    -Also programmed another chip with LX3 for Demo Man & and another with 1.4H for my Theatre of Magic, no luck with either

    What am I missing/doing wrong? Thanks!

    #26 6 years ago
    Quoted from Kryzsky:

    Need some advice on programming, gave it a shot yesterday with no luck.
    -Bought 32 pin EPROM chips (ST M27C2001) 2Mb
    -Used a GQ-4x, software installed no problem
    -Placed the chip in the programmer, bottom position, locked it in with the little lever
    -Selected the manufacturer first, then model # of the chip
    -Blank checked, ok
    -Chose the new ROM, Demo Man L4 (398 Kb), programmed, took about a minute, ok
    -Verified, ok
    -Placed a sticker on the chip over the window
    -Installed in Demo Man, everything powered up, heard the chime but would not boot
    -Also programmed another chip with LX3 for Demo Man & and another with 1.4H for my Theatre of Magic, no luck with either
    What am I missing/doing wrong? Thanks!

    You're using the wrong part. You need a 27c040 or 27c4001. A 27c1001 will only hold the first 1/4 of the ROM image.

    You also need to unzip the binary.. and for the Tom 1.4H, you need a different security chip to use 1.4H

    #27 6 years ago

    We bought one of these just to play with and see, and my guys like it. Does everything we need and we have used it more then a doz times with out issue. We have a big burner too, but this is good for us as a secondary or in the field burner.

    ebay.com link » Newes Universal Willem Eprom Programmer Pcb50x Spi Flash Bios Ecu Pic

    #28 6 years ago
    Quoted from johnwartjr:

    You're using the wrong part. You need a 27c040 or 27c4001. A 27c1001 will only hold the first 1/4 of the ROM image.
    You also need to unzip the binary

    The 27C2001 I used is a 2Mb chip but you're saying I need 4Mb, I assumed I was fine since the .rom file size is only 512 Kb. I'm now assuming that the installed ROM uses more that 512 Kb when programmed, is that correct?

    I could have sworn I saw the programmer display the correct .rom file during programming, but I'll have to make sure I did point to the unzipped file.

    Thanks!

    #29 6 years ago

    GQ-4X.

    Get an AC adapter or powered usb hub to go with it.

    #30 6 years ago
    Quoted from Kryzsky:

    The 27C2001 I used is a 2Mb chip but you're saying I need 4Mb ...

    There are few people who know more about burning pinball ROMs than John. If he says you're using the wrong size chip, you can pretty much accept it as fact.

    #31 6 years ago

    Absolutely, I'm just taking this opportunity to find out exactly what I did wrong. Sounds like the ROM takes more than 512 Kb of memory when programmed on the EPROM. That's only 1/2 a Mb, pretty small now that I think about it.

    John is recommending I buy a 27C4001 which is 4Mb, the EPROM I used is only 2 Mb, obviously the problem. I thought the programmer would give me an error if I didn't have enough memory.

    Is there any way to look at the 512Kb ROM file and determine how much EPROM memory it will take when programmed?

    Thanks!

    #32 6 years ago

    Found the answer in another thread here on Pinside after more searching, wasn't aware that you need enough EPROM memory for 8 times the file size of the ROM. All makes sense now.

    "Take the file size and multiply it x8. So- Getaway L5 is 512kb- multiply it times 8 and you have 4096kb (4mb)."

    #33 6 years ago

    This gets confused frequently.

    A 27c801 is a 1MB EPROM.
    A 27c1001 is *NOT* a 1MB EPROM

    There are 1024 KB in 1 MB.

    512 KB = .5 MB

    A 27c4001 is a 512KB EPROM.

    It's confusing, no doubt... but once you figure it out, you'll be OK
    1,048,576 27c080 (1024K)
    524,288 27c040 ( 512K)
    262,144 27c020 ( 256K)
    131,072 27C010 ( 128K)
    65,536 27512 ( 64K)
    32,768 27256 ( 32K)
    16,384 27128 ( 16K)
    8,192 2764 ( 8K)
    4,096 2732 or 2532 ( 4K)
    2,048 2716 ( 2K)

    Note: 2532 and 2732 don't interchange. They have different pinouts. Some boards use 2732s, some use 2532s, and some can be rejumpered to use one or the other.

    3 months later
    #34 6 years ago
    Quoted from johnwartjr:

    It's confusing, no doubt... but once you figure it out, you'll be OK
    1,048,576 27c080 (1024K)
    524,288 27c040 ( 512K)
    262,144 27c020 ( 256K)
    131,072 27C010 ( 128K)
    65,536 27512 ( 64K)
    32,768 27256 ( 32K)
    16,384 27128 ( 16K)
    8,192 2764 ( 8K)
    4,096 2732 or 2532 ( 4K)
    2,048 2716 ( 2K)

    John, what do you use for 4meg and 8meg?

    9 months later
    #35 5 years ago

    I thought this thread was worthwhile to bring forward for anyone interested in burning an EPROM chip with an updated ROM.

    #36 5 years ago

    GQ-4X here as well. Works great. Got a deal on ebay for the burner and the eraser for like $120.

    1 week later
    #37 5 years ago

    Old thread bump again...

    Has anyone tried the Minipro TL866? I just picked one up, other than the help is in Chinese, seems decent enough however I can read old 2516/2716's no problem but I can not write 2716's. It goes through the motions then blows up right away and does no writes at all.

    Anyone using this have tips?

    #38 5 years ago

    I had that issue with my GQ-4X when trying to run it through a powered USB hub. I thought it would help provide extra power but for some reason the software would just freeze whenever I tried to burn anything. May have just been a crappy hub, I dunno. Are you plugging straight to a port on the computer, or running through something else?

    #39 5 years ago

    I have a GQ-4X and burned one (1) chip thru USB without issue ( off one of the motherboards USB ports).
    I have an external power adapter and plan on using it. I tried using an indirect USB port and had errors and trouble maintaining connectivity with the burner.

    #40 5 years ago

    GL, tried both off of a USB port and off a hub. Trying a 27C010 now and it works. Odd...

    AMD27C010 12.75v PGM

    Guess I'll try a 512, 128, 64,,,,, see what happens.

    #41 5 years ago

    My GQ-4X has taken everything I've thrown at it without external power, even for the ones it recommends external power for, like 2716's... My laptop is a ThinkPad R400.

    #42 5 years ago

    I'm starting to think its a code bug or device limitation on the TL866.

    I just burnt a AMD27256B, AMD2764, AND27C32 but I can't do a AMD2716 which is what I want the most right now.

    Grrrrrrr guess I'm ordering a GQ-4X

    #43 5 years ago

    This must be my issue...

    Supported Vpp range for the GQ-4X is 0V,5V,12V,12.7V,15V,21V,25V
    Supported Vpp range for the TL866 is 0V,5V,12V,12.7V,15V,21V

    Vanilla old 2716 chips use 25V

    #44 5 years ago

    I have a genius G840 and its a beast. glad its externally powered tho so I can burn some of those higher voltage older roms.

    1 year later
    #45 4 years ago

    Hi,
    Sorry to resurrect an old thread, but will this one work?

    SIVAVA-Willem-EPROM-Programmer-PCB50B-Universal-Programmer-Extractor-3-Adapter

    Axl

    Post edited by Axl: Wrong link...

    #46 4 years ago

    I have this and it has never let me down. The only negative I can find is that it is NOT compatible with windows 8.

    #47 4 years ago
    Quoted from JBK:

    I have this and it has never let me down. The only negative I can find is that it is NOT compatible with windows 8.

    GQ-4X can be used with Windows 8 if you disable driver signature verification.

    viperrwk

    #48 4 years ago
    Quoted from viperrwk:

    GQ-4X can be used with Windows 8 if you disable driver signature verification.
    viperrwk

    Can confirm this. Just got mine in and after jumping through a few hoops it works on 8.1

    Just need to figure out how to burn JP roms using the ones off ipd.

    8 months later
    #49 3 years ago

    Has anyone used this burner? amazon.com link »

    from what I understand it should do everything I need it to do to burn most pinball roms... is that correct?

    #50 3 years ago

    I do not recommend the pocket programmer III. It is flaky and their tech support is total crap. I had an issue where it wouldnt program 2732 after a software update. They insisted I was using bad roms even after telling them many times they were NOS ones that program just fine in other programmer. I ended up sending them a tube of them to "test" but never got them back or even heard a peep from them again.
    I also bought a rather expensive prom adapter to burn bipolar proms and it never did work.
    Buy the GQ-4X and you wont be disappointed. It will do everything from 2716 to 27C080 without an adapter. For old bipolar proms I use an ancient Data IO 29B. I have a second GQ-4X nib as a backup in case mine ever fails. I have burned thousands of eproms with mine...wore out the original zif socket I used it so much. New zif socket and its still kicking along.

    Currently running GQ4X on windows 7 64 bit.
    When using USB programmers you should always use a usb port on the rear of the pc. Many times the front ports do not supply enough current and you may have issues. I run external power on mine always, it just stays plugged in all the time.
    The software says it does not support 2532 but no worrys there. 2532 are what I use the most and I have never had an issue burning them with the GQ-4X.

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