Wednesday, March 6, 2013

The new TOME GS is here!

Yes its been a while. A long while but the day has finally arrived. I have finally got around to building my new system and I am already considering changing chips :). But for now let me introduce you to the greatness(or lack thereof) of the new Tome Game System. I actually built two systems, the first one as a test of the pic32 micro, its development software and programming tools. After designing a simple version of the game system, building the board and connecting it to the programmer it connected on the first try. It took me a while to get the display working correctly. I don't have an oscilloscope to test the pins for correct timing so its trial and error. Eventually the display showed some garbage so I knew I was on the right track. I finally was able to initialize the display correctly and draw to it. Once this was working I ran into a few problems with the build that gave me the itch to build the more advanced prototype. This system consists of a PIC32MX220, nokia 6610 lcd, 128kb external sram, 2MB flash chip. This microcontroller only has 32kb flash and 8kb ram which was not enough for what I plan to do. I ordered a PIC32MX150 which has 128kb flash and 32kb ram which would have worked better but I wasn't paying attention and ordered the wrong ic package. That mistake made me just pull the trigger and build a new one with a better microcontroller.

Here are a few pics of the build process:

The next post will detail the system that I will be using for development. It's already done so no three year hiatus :). People keep asking me how to build a game system so I might fix the few issues and use this simple one as a example in a video series if anyone is interested.