Nintendo Famicom

Hello again…

I’ve been busy with work – a lot – but have found time to mod the old Nintendo Famicom to give a composite video output, for use on TVs with an AV input.

I’d read a *lot* of guides on how to go about doing this, with the writers having a range of successes, but a lot of modders kept getting ‘jail bars’. Jail bars are the vertical lines that run the full height of the screen at repeated intervals, that are caused by the clock/processor interfering with the video signal. My first mod had jail bars, but I thought they weren’t bad. The jail bars on my stock Twin Famicom were worse! Continue reading “Nintendo Famicom”

Modding Game Boys

Hello all, I know I haven’t updated this blog in a long time – like over a year – but I will try harder this year, I promise.

Anyway, one of the more fun bits that I’ve been up to last year was modding original Game Boys. I saw some back light mods by Joe, a friend on twitter, and did a bit of digging. It’s not a terribly difficult mod, only needing to solder two wires for the basic effort, going up to adding a hex inversion chip for biverting the display. Continue reading “Modding Game Boys”

Dreamcast battery mod

Hello again, been a while…

Me and the boy had a weekend of Dreamcast gaming, and after a few power-ons, having to reset the date and time – every time – due to the dead battery was beginning to annoy.

I’ve been here before. Less than 3 months ago, I’m sure, after I got my SLG3000 and tried out the scanlines, realised the internal rechargeable battery was dead. No problem, I have about 30 CR2032s kicking around. A quick google soon but that plan to bed. The internal Dreamcast battery is a rechargeable coin battery. A CR2032 is no good, as the DC will output a charge to the battery, and terrible things could happen. I don’t know what, exactly, but didn’t fancy finding out. Continue reading “Dreamcast battery mod”

A month with an iPad

So maybe it’s over a month, I’ve not kept count. What do I think of it? How have I ended up using it? Pros? Cons? Read on!

My mate Robbo was heading to Las Vegas about a month before the UK launch date of the iPad, and he was toying with the idea of picking one up. “Grab us one, kidda, I’ll sort you out when you’re back.” I says, and he did.

Pretty much everyone’s first question was “What on earth are you gonna use it for?” (except the wife, her’s was more along the lines of cost and current computer count in the house–5), to which I didn’t have a good answer. I have an iPhone and MacBook Pro, but being a nerd, an iPad was a prequisite. Continue reading “A month with an iPad”

The problem with Flash as I see it…

There’s an uproar at the moment on the interwebs. You may have heard about it.

The iPad will not support Flash.

Just like the iPhone before it, the Flash plug-in cannot and will not run in the iPad’s browser. Apple say it’s because the Flash plug-in is the single biggest cause of Safari crashes. I can’t say I’d blame them for being pissed. The window to the internet on your default install can be crippled by a third party proprietary plug-in. Not cool.

So, because Apple have a closed platform in the iPhone and iPad they can choose who plays ball.

Continue reading “The problem with Flash as I see it…”


Emulation has been something I’ve been interested in for years… getting super excited about trying to run Sega Megadrive games on a 7200/90 PowerMac when I first learned about emulation. This was all quickly killed by the frustration of seeing the game stutter and jerk about like about like a bad strobe attack.

It took many years for things to improve, but even then I felt cheated, using a £1,200 laptop to play a 20 year old game that I had in the attic that would run without the problems… but with recent handhelds, thankfully, there’s been a better way. Continue reading “Emulationatron”

Your favourite obsolete technology…

I tossed out a question on Twitter that I’d been thinking about for a while.

What’s your favourite obsolete technology?

This had been playing on my mind for a bit, mostly from playing on the Sega Dreamcast, but also a stint on the original Tetris on an old Gameboy Pocket, but also thinking about my old Sony MiniDisc players, like the MD-R90, which I really miss.

I got some great answers from my mates, another MiniDisc lover, the ZX Spectrum, VHS porn (thanks Rob!) and a LaserDisc system for Dragon’s Lair!

Feed the Drobo

Like most nerds, I need more hard drive space. Right now, I bet you need more drive space too. If you’re reading this blog, odds on you’re a nerd, and nerds can’t get enough drive space.

So over the years, I’ve collected a few USB external drives, two hanging off the back of the media centre Mac Mini, and the third out the Airport Extreme. 1.75TB. Three separate hard drives. Three separate power supplies. And I need more space…

Dammit, I don’t want to buy *another* USB drive and add it to the collection, and I don’t want to have to swap in a bigger drive and spend a few days doing the data shuffle and risk forgetting some really important data. So what’s a nerd to do?

Enter the Drobo. Continue reading “Feed the Drobo”