Motherboard

First, to answer the #1 question popping up in comments after each ordering window closes – yes, there will be more devices available in near future (several weeks). So if you missed it this time just try again later.

Now, I belive I promised some nudes a while ago and today I finally had the time to deliver. This is for those who actually appreciate all the R&D and testing work I put into my devices.

Step 1 – research and secure suitable replacements. The one on the left I bought in unknown condition, the right one was gifted to me. Obviously I’m going to try the faster one first 🙂

Step 2 – disassemble Marty, locate the original CPU. The hard part is actually keeping track of all the screws, I like to put them back in the exact place I removed them from. Marty can have either Intel or AMD 386SX in it, I think AMD was more common since it used smaller process and run cooler with less power. At the very least the Intel one is a low power variant.

Step 3 – remove original CPU. Don’t inhale the flux smoke, label says it causes death or worse. BTW be careful not to short or overheat your CMOS/RTC battery. I have mine replaced with a holder.

Step 4 – retire old CPU. Don’t discard it in case the new one is dead or damaged. This is also why I had 2 to choose from (and a backup solution in form of an AMD 386SX on an old PC board).

Step 5 – so far so good, clean the pads. This is the most stressful step for me as it can be very easy to rip pads/traces on these older PCBs if you’re not careful.

Step 6  – solder the new CPU in, enjoy your 486SX2 Marty.

Do note that the CPU says 50 (as in, 25×2) but the actual clock is what the crystal generator next to CPU provides (32/2=16). So it’s actually 16MHz CPU still but when you enable the internal clock multiplier it will be 32MHz. And this is really the only way of doing it unless you replace the generator too – but then you’ll have problems with the rest of the mobo being overclocked, which it might not like.

Also, the clock multiplier and internal cache is disabled after reset (in order not to cause any compatibility issues) and has to be enabled by software. Which Marty BIOS won’t do, obviously. So you only get a small boost from 486 advanced pipeline but you’ll still be limited by the clock and memory bus. Game images have to be modified to include a small program to be run before the actual game executable – and that will be easier with ODE, obviously.

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62 thoughts on “Motherboard

    • I took the videos below and opened two of them and ran the 386 vs the 486 and to be honest the difference to the nake eye was very minimal. When the Shooter had a ton explosiions and such on screen the 486 seemed smoother, but barely. I would love to see a true side by side of games that truely show the difference.

  1. Some related videos posted a few years ago that motivated me to find one of the elusive upgrades :

    Would you be kind enough to make available the small exe file needed to enable the cache & multiplier on the Marty ?

    • Look for a file named cx215set.lzh – this is for Cyrix 486-based Towns and has built-in cache presets that are Towns-specific. PC DOS tools can be used too but you need to know what to set. Early TI CPUs are Cyrix with TI branding but later ones (clock-doubled 8kB cache variants) have some control bits moved around. I’m going to write my own app for those, eventually, but AFAIK the tool can deal with those too, you just need to figure out what options controls cache and clock yourself.

      • Wonder if this program that rund before the Game on the ODE can be set up to run like a Trainer where it would let the user set the options on screen using the cotnroller

      • Hahaha! “The hard part is actually keeping track of all the screws, I like to put them back in the exact place I removed them from.” I do the exact same thing, I think there is word for that condition. By the Way awesome stuff, totally geeking out here! I got some old 486 cpu’s let me know if you need any more!

  2. Looks Dope! Thanks for sharing! I don’t understand what all the salt and negativity is about. No matter what, there’s always going to be someone with something negative to say. Keep up the great work and thanks for all of your hard work as well!

  3. I have some 486 processors from various manufacturers and speeds if you need additional samples – let me know and we can work something out.

  4. I have both a Marty and Marty II. I really should try this. I need to find me a 486. I am assuming hot air is enough to get the old processor off the main board and then clean pads with braid, use some no clean flex and just solder down the new Chip and that is it? The ODE will all us to handle the increases via INI file?

  5. If anyone is savoy with Makaron emulator I need some assistance please. I am trying to run the emulator but every time I run it it give me a error Makaron is unable to run the application please try reinstalling the application again. What do I need to do. I have tried installing it like 10x… I’m stumped.

      • How do I know if I’m missing any run-time files. I had to reinstall my os for xp since had
        I had some thousands of files that I didn’t need and were taking up space. This pc I never use it for online so I don’t have anyway to connect it to download any files. This dell computer is strictly for offline old school gaming. I reinstalled service pack 3 with windows installation disk. Everything was installed fine. No errors but when I try to run two emulators like dolphine emu for gamecube isos and makaron dreamcast isos and zip mame files. It informs me that the installation is not good and I must try reinstalling. What are all the files that I must put into the system32 folder for makaron? Or maybe I should just try putting some of them into the makaron folder itself. This is not the first time this happened Last time It happened was back in 2012 and someone helped me with download as well. Then it worked. I have all the bios and roms that work for makaron and the xpadder. Very confused!

      • Thank you for all your info. I have already tried doing that. I’ll try your version. The one I did I just copied and pasted it to system32 folder and then it just ran itself. The problem is that I can’t copy over certain dll files. I tried doing if like 50 times. The msvc.dll file is horribly small like 352 kb or something. I think it should be 760 kb. I tried using unlocker.exe program to get rid of the old one but it won’t do it. So Again I will try this for the 10th time.

      • Now it is giving me the d3dx9_42.dll error like last time. So we are on the right track! Thank you very much. May you send me the remaining files link again, and let me know where to put them.

      • Thank you but it says that directx could not install please check your network and try again!

        This pc has no network active since I am using xp

    • May you please help me find the stand alone version I do not know what to do. I am no longer 01 lit. Everything is out sourced and I changed my degree over 20 years ago thank god!

      Thank you for your assistance.

      Ron

      • I will try after the weekend. I’ll let you know if it works when I get back next wk!
        Thank you for all you help!

      • When I hit run on makaron because loading it goes to white screen now so its doing something but it crashes as well then it freezes on the white screen. If i hit the run instead of load it gives me this error!

        (-1102)in module Makaron: WinMain –
        Makaron.GlownaPetla -> Makaron.Uruchom-> HOLLY.Uruchom->hol
        HOLLY/PVR.Uruchom -> VS.Przygotuj->
        VS.Skompiluj/D3DXCompileShader #0: Error_MOD_NOT_FOUND
        (n/a)

      • Not yet I just tried doing each file at at time on Makaron error. I was afraid to mess up the system32folder.
        I downloaded a few files here and there. I will dry it but I need to know where to install all of them because it’s asking me for a directory. Also is it safe do you think can it mess up my registry?

      • As I’ve told you before, what you’re doing is not safe and broke your previous OS. There is no need to know where to put the files, you just run Microsft installers from their own page. Do that and don’t waste my time.

  6. General question,

    Have all payment requests for the Marty been sent out?

    curious if all the units have been shipped for that console?

  7. Did all rhea emails go out???

    Me and a buddy both ordered at the same time. We were having a all night waiting party, both of us had our own laptops. We both ordered at the same time and both got Message sent, yet he got an email this morning and I got nothing.?

  8. ^^^^^^
    Rhea Notices went out?

    How come I did not get one? I was in on a non stale page ASAP?
    I still have my Order page Tab open from Thursday morning if that helps?

  9. While you are digging around in the marty, do you know if it would be possible to do an RGB mod? Would be great if there analog R, G, B, and CSYNC (or at least HS and VS) are availble at the s-video encoder. If not I wonder if digital RGB is available for a 3DO style RGB mod? Hopefully its not some crazy style setup like the PC-FX where RGB is just impossible. Also what about Force 240P and 480P?

    • Marty has a 2-channel Y/C DAC and that’s it. There seem to be some unused pins on the GFX chip, I think these might ouput RGB but I’ve never had the time to check.

    • RGB on the marty is not possible as it is set up internally. I have already put out the request to all the usualy suspects in the comminity. There was one guy sho said the same thing as you, in order to possible get RGB out of the Marty you would need to pull the video encover chip and create a special interface that would be between the PCB and the Encoder and he said there wasn’t enough interest to even try.

      Personally I think the best bet for Marty Owners will be Svideo using the new RETROTINK 2X that will be coming out shortly.

      • I wonder if the Marty and regular fm towns use the same gfx chip? If so it should be possible to build some kind of circuit to get RGBHV since the regular fm towns have RGBHV outputs.

        I run all of my 240P, 480P, and 480i consoles on a PVM-20L5 through an extron crosspoint RGB switch. I prefer having RGB not only for the better video but also for the ease of switching systems without changing sources etc on the monitor. I currently have everything on RGB except the Marty and PC-FX, and I haven’t gone out to buy an s-video switch as I’ve been hoping to be able get RGB out of the Marty so I have to plug swap to play these two. I guess I could always just get an s-video to RGB decoder for the convenience, but that’s another box and power plug in my already cramped retro cabinet lol.

      • DO a google for FM MARTY RGB you will find a few theads that discuss it. I would post links but I am not home to look it up and my phone sucks for googling..

        THE Marty and the Towns PC are a bit different in their video design.

        One of the Guys I spoke to about it who creates all sorty of HDMI mods for systems says that like the 3Do the chip would have to be removed from the board and you would have to create a custom interface board to do RGB or even HDMI then put the video chip back on top of the custom board. While I am not expertly versed on the intricacies of RGB modding, I would tend to beleive his viewpoint.

        Personally I would love RGB or HDMI on the Marty… But I think the Svideo using the Retrotink 2X will be fantastic solution until someone wants to tear down a marty and figure it out. (if it is at all possible).

      • Well not all of the 3DO RGB mods require removing the chip. The Otaku V2 mod that’s currently for sale is installed by soldering mostly to via’s but it is a ton of wires.

        Deunan does the chip that feeds the Y/C encoder have any sort of identifying marks (model #)? I don’t have mine disassembled and have had trouble finding high res pics.

        This whole thing has me pumped for the Marty again. Just purchased a new old stock 486 to do the mod and hopefully I can grab a docbrown on the next run, but I’d like to try to figure this RGB thing out to see if that chip has Analog RGB lines (most likely not) or if it’s digital RGB lines are compatible with the 3DO boards with few changes.

      • That would be fantastic.. I would love to get one of the 3DO Digital RGB boards and make it work on Marty.. Wires do not scare me. I can solder wires all day long. VIAs and Small legs are no bother either. As long as it is layed out and explained in full.. I am up for it!

      • The other issue is that the Marty outputs damn 480i! Unfortunately it doesn’t look like there are any hardware switches for it, but maybe our fearless leader can figure out a software solution to run with the docbrown menu to force 240P? Lol

        Because even using scalers like retrotink 2X, OSSC, or XRGB-mini 480i never looks quite right – you have to use a really expensive dedicated deinterlacer and even then it isnt as good as a virgin progressive signal. Nearly every other console I’ve been able to find solutions via software (ps2, gamecube, xbox, wii, dreamcast) or hardware (3DO and CD-I). Or maybe I’m just a video whore lol.

      • I love RGB mods! It would be pretty darn cool to see something for the marty pop up. I had a look at its internals and it shouldn’t be too difficult but a challenge nonetheless.

      • “We’ll some people have looked into it.
        But according to the specs of the MB40968V video DAC used by the Marty, it does not output RGB.

        That DAC won’t, but what is the pinout of the chip that feeds that DAC?

        I doubt they would go to the trouble to have the multiple, digital R, G, and B output lines on that chip in addition to the digital Y and C outputs that go to the MB40968V. But who knows? If they do, however, I suppose it is possible that you could wire up a circuit similar to the one out there for the 3DO (which uses “digital RGB”).”

        This is from the SHMUPS thread…

      • The ASIC feeding that DAC has a quite a few test pads around it, possibly these provide RGB. Though perhaps not without some additional persuasion, and noone seems very intrested in donating their free time and skills to find that out. In any case it would be a lot of wire soldering at best.

  10. GDEMU. I did extract them all to a temp folder. There are a lot of months and years in zip files. Which one do you think I should extract and where do I extract it to please help me out I’m still trying to get the Markaron emulator up and running with games.

  11. Hi @gdemu,

    I just got my Rhea payment request and paid already. May I also have support pegs for both VA0 and VA1? Besides, I know it’s preorder and will take time for production and shipment. Could you kindly confirm with me my address again before the shipment? I have great chance to move to another place shortly.

    Thank you!

    • I will send both peg types to everybody because it’s easier for me at this point. Also, you didn’t read the email I sent, if I asked for payment then your device is ready to ship right now. So if there is ANYTHING you want to change in the address you have to EMAIL ME, not write a comment I might miss. If I don’t hear form you soon I will cancel your order.

      • I only got your payment request but didn’t get any email. I searched my entire inbox including spam but no luck. Could you kindly send the email again?

        If it’s ready to ship then no need to change the address. Thank you!

  12. My GDemu arrived today and its up and running to make me a very happy chappy!
    Thank you, Really happy 🙂

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