(Topic ID: 344938)

Stern Dracula Delay

By BrotherSir

9 months ago


Topic Heartbeat

Topic Stats

  • 19 posts
  • 5 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 9 months ago by Quench
  • Topic is favorited by 1 Pinsider

You

Linked Games

Topic Gallery

View topic image gallery

aaaa_SB100.jpg
20231014_102839 (resized).jpg
#1 9 months ago

I'm running into odd behavior on a Stern Dracula. The entire game has a sort of lag, or delay processing switches. It will freeze up for a bit, and then play "catch up" on all of the sounds/scoring. Sometimes it's rare, and sometimes it's unplayable. I took a video of it "catching up" after a drain:

It doesn't happen all of time, and I haven't noticed any particular switch causing it. It's running on an Alltek Ultimate MPU that worked flawlessly in a Hot Hand. Memory was cleared and didn't resolve the issue.

#2 9 months ago

The alltec mpu has a clock speed setting. I think those two sterns used a different version of the mpu. Switch the clock speed and see what that does.

#3 9 months ago
Quoted from rstrunks:

The alltec mpu has a clock speed setting. I think those two sterns used a different version of the mpu. Switch the clock speed and see what that does.

Seems unlikely, but I can try. They both run on MPU 100, and it didn't do this for a good while when I first swapped the board.

#4 9 months ago

slochar
Here’s an odd one.


Chris Hibler - CARGPB #31
Http://chrishiblerpinball.com/contact
Thank you for checking out the PinWiki - http://www.PinWiki.com/

#5 9 months ago

Swap the sb100 sound board from the hot hand

#6 9 months ago
Quoted from slochar:

Swap the sb100 sound board from the hot hand

Sound board swap seemed to do the trick. Put a few games on it (including my longest ever) and not one delay.

What was the tell, and how do I need to fix the board now?

Thanks!

#7 9 months ago

The tell for me was Chris tagging me so I thought what the hell could I know that he didn't... He was thinking software. I just made a wild ass guess. Quench might have a theory.

Keep playing to make sure it's truly the sound board.

#8 9 months ago

Ha, pretty darn good guess. It's held up flawlessly so far.

#9 9 months ago

And I don’t have any idea how an SB-100 can slow the microprocessor down. Weird.
Quench second tag.

Chris Hibler - CARGPB #31
Http://chrishiblerpinball.com/contact
Thank you for checking out the PinWiki - http://www.PinWiki.com/

#10 9 months ago
Quoted from ChrisHibler:

And I don’t have any idea how an SB-100 can slow the microprocessor down

Me either, it was just a gut reaction to the video. The real tell will be if that sb100 back in the hot hand does the same thing over there.

#11 9 months ago

Unfortunately won't be able to test that anytime soon. The Hot Hand is completely disassembled for a deep shop, and I'm not quick with it.

Maybe the sound board wasn't slowing the processing down, but acting as a kind of kink in the hose. So everything was just passing very slowly through the board?

#12 9 months ago

It's very peculiar..
I saw this thread when it was posted. Looked at the video a few times looking for clues but all I could notice was that switches seemed to be randomly activating even after the new ball was served. Nothing I could simulate in emulation with stuck switches or anything.
It's like there's some short code execution issue with noise on a lower address line/VMA/Ø2 signal caused by the sound board, but even so this would potentially cause crashes/reboots.

It wouldn't surprise me if the original sound board went back in and it worked, i.e. some ribbon cable connector issue or typical fractured solder joints on the sound boards J1 pin header.
Note every signal at the J1 connector of the sound board is an input or power. The sound board doesn't have any output signals back to the MPU board.

BrotherSir since you can't test anymore try to at least post a high res picture showing the soldering on the top long J1 pin header on the back of the sound board.

#13 9 months ago
Quoted from BrotherSir:

Maybe the sound board wasn't slowing the processing down, but acting as a kind of kink in the hose. So everything was just passing very slowly through the board?

If it were somehow generating extra interrupts it could. You'd likely see the displays flickering as well though although that's a different interrupt line.

Although I think one of the signals that gets passed through to the sound board is the clock signal - if the clock gets bogged down that would slow everything down and it wouldn't necessarily crash the game. Not so much bogged down, but shorted/feedback somehow that would cause the processor to miss clocks.

Quoted from Quench:

It's like there's some short code execution issue with noise on a lower address line/VMA/Ø2 signal caused by the sound board, but even so this would potentially cause crashes/reboots.

That's what I thought as well, but thinking it would cause crashes if it were something on the data lines (almost immediately) - and stuck address line (same thing, crash almost immediately)

Maybe try putting the original sb100 back in and see if the slowness comes back? I assume you used the same j5 ribbon connector in both cases or did you bring that connector over as well from the hot hand?

#14 9 months ago

Thing is if the CPU was missing clocks or getting bogged down with other interrupts, I'd expect to see the feature lamps starting to flicker because the CPU wouldn't be re-enabing lamps often enough from zero crossing service routine. Yet the feature lamps are staying on solid and look normal. But at the same time when the sounds are getting stuck, it's like zero crossing timers aren't being processed.

#15 9 months ago
Quoted from Quench:

It's very peculiar..
I saw this thread when it was posted. Looked at the video a few times looking for clues but all I could notice was that switches seemed to be randomly activating even after the new ball was served. Nothing I could simulate in emulation with stuck switches or anything.
It's like there's some short code execution issue with noise on a lower address line/VMA/Ø2 signal caused by the sound board, but even so this would potentially cause crashes/reboots.
It wouldn't surprise me if the original sound board went back in and it worked, i.e. some ribbon cable connector issue or typical fractured solder joints on the sound boards J1 pin header.
Note every signal at the J1 connector of the sound board is an input or power. The sound board doesn't have output signals back to the MPU board.
BrotherSir since you can't test anymore try to at least post a high res picture showing the soldering on the top long J1 pin header on the back of the sound board.

You are correct. Swapped the original board back in and the problem didn't come back. Yet another problem ultimately solved by re-seating connectors

I'm already going through and replacing connectors in this game so I'll add the SB ones to the list. Here's the requested picture

20231014_102839 (resized).jpg20231014_102839 (resized).jpg
#16 9 months ago

Looks like the pins have already been reflowed, is there flux stuck there though should be cleaned off? Hard to tell without inspecting in person.

Still a strange issue. I gave up on my sb100 in my hot hand and just bought a weebly to replace it. I was reading the "worst game ever owned" thread and someone listed hot hand so I was like I should go play mine.

What a great game! The naysayer obviously didn't get it. They said it was just watch the big spinny flipper with the ball sitting there racking up points.

Personally, I like to shoot the spinner first, go into one of the holes, and while it's scoring the spinner is changing the card suit so you get more than one per orbit. Nice. I like backhanding the drop bank as well.

It's very much a pick your target type of game depending on what is lit and what you need. Like Big Game, which I also really like.

Hey, all 3 (HH, BG, and drac) are harry williams designs! Funny how that works out.

#17 9 months ago

Agreed, Hot Hand is very under rated. I like how the whole game you're building and building to a big ball 3.

I focus on spades and diamonds, then rip the spinner, but you're right you always have to pick your shot based on board state. Unlit ace with the drop up? Always take it.

#18 9 months ago

Behavior kind of similar but different hardware platform.

I found this beauty 11 years ago.

https://www.pinwiki.com/wiki/index.php/Williams_WPC#Slow_Animations


Chris Hibler - CARGPB #31
Http://chrishiblerpinball.com/contact
Thank you for checking out the PinWiki - http://www.PinWiki.com/

#19 9 months ago
Quoted from slochar:

What a great game!

Quoted from BrotherSir:

Agreed, Hot Hand is very under rated.

+2
Love my Hot hand.

Quoted from slochar:

Looks like the pins have already been reflowed,

Indeed. Maybe the pin header is tarnished and need replacing.

@brothersir, hard to tell if it's flux but check with a magnifying glass if there's a short between pin 14 (address line A8) and the VMA signal trace right next to it.

aaaa_SB100.jpgaaaa_SB100.jpg

Promoted items from Pinside Marketplace and Pinside Shops!
1,600 (OBO)
Machine - For Sale
Los Angeles, CA
$ 17.50
Cabinet - Sound/Speakers
Pinball Haus
 
From: $ 30.00
Cabinet Parts
Rocket City Pinball
 
$ 130.00
Playfield - Protection
Beehive Pinball Co.
 
$ 1.29
Playfield - Toys/Add-ons
Daddio's 3D Printed Mods
 
$ 69.00
Hey modders!
Your shop name here

Reply

Wanna join the discussion? Please sign in to reply to this topic.

Hey there! Welcome to Pinside!

Donate to Pinside

Great to see you're enjoying Pinside! Did you know Pinside is able to run without any 3rd-party banners or ads, thanks to the support from our visitors? Please consider a donation to Pinside and get anext to your username to show for it! Or better yet, subscribe to Pinside+!


This page was printed from and we tried optimising it for printing. Some page elements may have been deliberately hidden.

Scan the QR code on the left to jump to the URL this document was printed from.