(Topic ID: 235445)

Stern Spike Node Board Schematics Troubleshooting and Discussion


By JodyG

3 months ago



Topic Stats

  • 186 posts
  • 59 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 41 days ago by MooButt
  • Topic is favorited by 28 Pinsiders

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    There are 186 posts in this topic. You are on page 4 of 4.
    #151 84 days ago

    Forgive my technical ignorance, but does this info resolve node board-gate?

    #152 84 days ago
    Quoted from Spelunk71:

    Forgive my technical ignorance, but does this info resolve node board-gate?

    There's still lots of unknowns like what's going on in the boot-up code, is it proprietary, is it encoded.

    This just makes it more likely people can service these after problems occur. But there's no guarantee problems can be fixed: there's still dependencies on those unknowns, such as bricking scenarios.

    #153 84 days ago

    And the schematics they did post are NOT of every board or every incarnation of every board.

    #154 84 days ago

    :S but they did post Something. Which honestly; was surprising to me.
    Glad they may some kind of effort.
    Honestly; I think this thread should continue until the post schematics for every node board... and we as a community should hold the ACCOUNTABLE.

    #155 84 days ago
    Quoted from KenLayton:

    And the schematics they did post are NOT of every board or every incarnation of every board.

    Well, we all knew you'd find something to complain about.

    #156 84 days ago

    I'll update the first post in this thread if people want to hash out the schematics in depth. It's a good resource.

    #157 84 days ago

    It's interesting to look at the dates on the pages on the schematics. Some of them they were drafting this past week (assuming the dates are when they were originally drawn or last modified and not when they were digitally printed - which is the standard assumption in my field of engineering)

    Someone else was probably right when they said about Stern needed to clean up the schematics for general users to parse through.

    #158 84 days ago
    Quoted from TreyBo69:

    It's interesting to look at the dates on the pages on the schematics. Some of them they were drafting this past week (assuming the dates are when they were originally drawn or last modified and not when they were digitally printed - which is the standard assumption in my field of engineering)
    Someone else was probably right when they said about Stern needed to clean up the schematics for general users to parse through.

    Quite possible someone was rushed and did not tidy things up when originally doing the schematics.

    There is still some problems if you want to nitpick. Like they left the part designation number the default application generated value... ie multiple U1's with the G$1, G$2 after it on the CPU schematic.

    Anyways great start to see Stern follow through and post at least some of the schematics.

    #159 84 days ago

    I looked up them over, not bad, but I couldn’t find more then half of the boards for Game of Thrones. Maybe the rest will show up today?

    What’s the difference between a SD card image, and the game code? Could the SD card image contain an auto flasher to program the micro controllers onthe node boards? Both have the same version number of code.

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    #160 84 days ago
    Quoted from Luckydogg420:

    I looked up them over, not bad, but I couldn’t find more then half of the boards for Game of Thrones. Maybe the rest will show up today?
    What’s the difference between a SD card image, and the game code? Could the SD card image contain an auto flasher to program the micro controllers onthe node boards? Both have the same version number of code. [quoted image]

    I believe the image is there just in case something goes wrong with the SD card in your game.

    It also makes it so you can upgrade by swapping SD cards instead of plugging in a USB if you so desire.

    17
    #161 84 days ago

    Lots of people here saying Stern wouldn't meet their time commitment and general Debbie downers. While it may not be 100% every Spike board ever and error free (my High Speed schematic still has errors BTW) it shows effort and they did a large amount of work to release this by the time they said they would. I give them credit for that.

    #162 84 days ago
    Quoted from kermit24:

    Lots of people here saying Stern wouldn't meet their time commitment and general Debbie downers. While it may not be 100% every Spike board ever and error free (my High Speed schematic still has errors BTW) it shows effort and they did a large amount of work to release this by the time they said they would. I give them credit for that.

    In general, Stern does pretty well...although I am a bit surprised they managed to hold their word on the date of this one. If we could just get a Ghostbusters update, I would be pretty well stoked with them.

    #163 84 days ago
    Quoted from TreyBo69:

    It's interesting to look at the dates on the pages on the schematics. Some of them they were drafting this past week (assuming the dates are when they were originally drawn or last modified and not when they were digitally printed - which is the standard assumption in my field of engineering)
    Someone else was probably right when they said about Stern needed to clean up the schematics for general users to parse through.

    And did you notice on the Spike 1 cpu schematics, all of the pages were out of sequence (page x of x) from what the box on the schematic says. Plus when I print double sided, the pages are way out of alignment.

    #164 83 days ago

     
    The schematics seem made with two different tools, one looks like Eagle and the other Orcad. That makes me think that Stern does not design its electronic boards, but other companies do it on request, I doubt Stern has electronic engineers on staff, when the design of new boards is something timely, it is not a usual job as is Game design, playfield, graphic, mechanical parts, etc ...

    As for Stern having to do something to free the schematics, that does not make sense, because to make the boards, first the schematics are made (with computer software, like Eagle, Altium, Orcad, etc...), and then the boards comes out. So if the boards were manufactured, without errors, the schematics were from the beginning available and also without errors, it was just a matter of making them public, nothing more.

    If the schematics have not been released before, it is a purely commercial matter, probably to have the boards manufacturing and repair business controlled. Surely by the received complaints from clients, they have decided to make public the schematics, which also does not allow a 100% of repairs, if the programs of the microcontrollers are not accessible, if any one is damaged.

    #165 83 days ago

    According to the last Stern of the Union announcement, they are also supposed to release a spike system manual:

    "We will also be releasing a manual and schematics of the SPIKE system by the end of the month."

    #166 83 days ago

    It can be harder to properly document a system than it is to design and build it

    I doubt Stern omitted schematics out of malice, more likely a lack of time.

    #167 83 days ago

    looks like eagle to me as well which is strange as you would usually contract out a big job like this to someone who would use more professional software like altium designer etc... eagle is mostly used by hobbiest as its cheap! not big companies.

    #168 83 days ago
    Quoted from russdx:

    looks like eagle to me as well which is strange as you would usually contract out a big job like this to someone who would use more professional software like altium designer etc... eagle is mostly used by hobbiest as its cheap! not big companies.

    Honestly, electronics in pinball machines are really not really complex enough to warrant a necessity for more professional software. Eagle is more than capable enough. Now if you were making a modern computer motherboard with 8 layers and tons of high frequency signaling, that would be another thing.

    I would not discredit any of Stern's schematics or designs simply because they were made in Eagle.

    I'm going to also guess they probably didn't contract these out. They may have just made a switch internally to use Eagle instead of OrCAD. And i wouldn't blame them.

    #169 83 days ago

    The cpu board will have tons of high speed signals for video / memory.

    like others have said i don't think these are the original schematics but just made for support.

    #170 82 days ago
    Quoted from russdx:

    The cpu board will have tons of high speed signals for video / memory.
    like others have said i don't think these are the original schematics but just made for support.

    The CPU has integrated memory. The video signals have maybe 4-8 differential pairs max.

    I was actually looking through a motherboard schematic the other day. It was 212 pages. (see more here if you are interested https://www.opencompute.org/wiki/Server/ProjectOlympus)

    Also see page 7 of this document and how it outlines 100Gbps signaling https://www.intel.com/content/dam/www/programmable/us/en/pdfs/literature/an/an684.pdf

    There's a lot of additional notes on the schematics that make it seem to me like they are mostly original. It doesn't make sense to add notes on resistor size selection if they were just trying to remake a schematic to show basic layout.

    16
    #171 79 days ago

    I put all the Spike schematics into a single PDF for convenience and have attached it to this post so you can save it locally if you don't want to download a bunch of individual PDFs.

    If anyone has a preference for how they should be ordered, let me know and I'll re-arrange them. I just put them in part-number order by default.
    Spike Schematics_combined.pdf

    #172 79 days ago

    Takes a look...
    spike.gif
    Quietly turns attention back to SAM games.

    #173 79 days ago
    Quoted from vireland:

    I put all the Spike schematics into a single PDF for convenience and have attached it to this post so you can save it locally if you don't want to download a bunch of individual PDFs.
    If anyone has a preference for how they should be ordered, let me know and I'll re-arrange them. I just put them in part-number order by default.
    [quoted image]

    Sweet, thank you! Downloaded in case the pinpocalypse comes

    #174 79 days ago

    This system seems very straightforward. Mostly just MCUs and shift registers to expand the IO.

    #175 78 days ago

    If any Pinside editors are following along, posts #147 and #171 should be made into key posts.

    #176 78 days ago
    Quoted from JodyG:

    If any Pinside editors are following along, posts #147 and #171 should be made into key posts.

    I can't keypost my own posts (even if they are "key") because it has upset people previously, so I have to wait for someone else to do it. Sorry.

    #177 78 days ago

    147 is just a link to Stern's page, people can find that easily enough on their own. I key-posted the valuable one though.

    #178 78 days ago
    Quoted from YeOldPinPlayer:

    147 is just a link to Stern's page, people can find that easily enough on their own. I key-posted the valuable one though.

    Thanks, I think one more HAS to be keyposted for the index to appear (pretty sure 2 is the minimum key posts for the index to show).

    #179 78 days ago

    At any rate, thanks for the contributions! I will update the first post with a link to the Stern page right now.

    1 week later
    #180 72 days ago

    I did an initial review of what Stern has provided so far. Based on the schematics listed, I saw errors in labeled IC components by comparison of several most common node and control boards, but it was not serious. The lead diagrams were legible and non-obtuse in terms of coded electronic standards. Based on the required number of schematics, this was a start, but there is a large number of unique node boards MISSING including SPIKE II system. Both CPUs were listed.

    Basically, Stern needs to keep churning them out, and reorganize them by game title (14 SPIKE titles to date) for easiest use. Added test diagnostics, node operation architecture (for the general end user), and training is still required to be developed to consider this a true success. This does not negate the difficulty for some boards to be repaired even with a digital hot air rework station and available components. Also, double check components based your boards and if there were revisions.

    If people don't keep up the pressure on this situation, developments will quickly stagnate. This is why I made so much noise over the past months which helped lead to a response by Stern, but certainly not overlooking the important inquiries by owners, distributors, and operators of the entire SPIKE operating system as a whole.

    Good luck Stern fans!

    #181 72 days ago

    And they *still* have not provided any schematics for "The Pin" machines. Nor have they provided game code for them. Those are Spike system machines.

    #182 71 days ago
    Quoted from KenLayton:

    And they *still* have not provided any schematics for "The Pin" machines. Nor have they provided game code for them. Those are Spike system machines.

    What are the part numbers labeled on the boards in one of 'the pins"? Seems at least the CPU board would match the part number used in Spike 1 games list GoT and WWE.

    #183 71 days ago
    Quoted from PinballManiac40:

    What are the part numbers labeled on the boards in one of 'the pins"?

    They are different. I have Spike "The Pin" CPU board as 520-5318-01. Spike I CPU boards are 520-5936-00 and 520-5936-01. They're not interchangeable from what I hear.

    Would be nice if someone could verify that as it is secondhand information to me.

    #184 71 days ago

    I'm happy to see that Stern is releasing these schematics. There is a lot of speculation as to why the long wait and some of it may be alluded as its very likely that Stern Pinball does not engineer nor manufacture these boards these boards but contracts it out to a 3rd party. If they are going to a 3rd party for the board design and manufacture, the 3rd party is under no obligation to provide any schematic diagrams to the purchaser unless this is a specific requirement of the manufacturing contract (which costs more money). Its entirely possible that Stern had to pay additional monies to obtain these schematics from the 3rd party and also receive permission to release them to the public. This is of course also speculation, but something to consider.

    #185 71 days ago
    Quoted from PinballManiac40:

    What are the part numbers labeled on the boards in one of 'the pins"?

    520-5318-01 Avengers The Pin cpu board

    520-5318-02 Transformers The Pin cpu board

    520-xxxx-xx Spiderman The Pin cpu board (I think it should be 520-6936-00)

    Stern made these machines to introduce the Spike system and has NOT provided ANY support (manuals, schematics, parts lists, game code, etc) whatsoever for them. Stern had to have had schematics, bill of materials, parts lists, game code, etc to build "The Pin" machines. These machines are out there and sometime they will need repairs. Us technicians need the documentation to do repairs.

    1 month later
    #186 41 days ago

    Here’s the parts list for Avengers The Pin

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