VOGONS


First post, by hard1k

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Hello guys,

After 3 years of desperate search, I've just acquired an Octek Hippo DCA2 board! However, its battery has already leaked, and presumably corroded the PCB, while the exact damage is yet to be determined.
The board is now travelling from Canada to my mail forwarding warehouse in Tualatin, OR, US, and the original plan was to forward it to Russia, where my friends could de-solder the battery and try to remove the corrosion. However, the total journey can result a long one, especially in the Covid circumstances and the holiday season approaching. So, the question is, if anyone of American vogoners (50 lower states) could kindly assist in recovering the board? The mission would be to receive it, de-solder the battery, clean the corrosion, power it up and give a short test. The board won't include any EDRAM SIMM sticks, I'll purchase them when/if the board is confirmed as working.
Here are the pictures of the board:

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Thank you very much for your kind help and assistance!

New sound card project: AWE64 Legacy
Please have a look at my wishlist (hosted at Amibay)

Reply 1 of 9, by kaputnik

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I'm in the wrong location to help you out, but judging from the pics, that doesn't look too bad at all. You might want to give fixing it a shot yourself. You probably only have to remove the battery and clean up the PCB and ISA port. No repairing broken traces, etc.

Desoldering the battery is a simple job if you got a reasonably high power soldering iron, since the pins are kind of flexible, and there are only two of them. Just melt the solder and pull them out, one at a time. Or, you could just snip the pins off and remove the battery, if you're ok with leaving the pin ends in the board.

A small fiberglass brush is useful for cleaning up both the ISA port and PCB. Bernstein model 2-168 is my weapon of choice, if you want something more specific to look for.

Reply 4 of 9, by cyclone3d

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I have a ton of 72-pin SIMMs. I gather that the EDRAM is a 72-pin SIMM with integrated SRAM instead of having the L2 cache on the motherboard.

I never knew such a thing existed.

How are EDRAM SIMMs identified?

If nobody else offers help, I could remove the battery and clean the corrosion. Not sure if I would want to try desoldering it though as I really hate what the leaky batteries do to the solder.... turns it into a weird substance that doesn't like to melt.

I would probably just clip the leads on the battery.

Yamaha YMF modified setupds and drivers
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AW744L II - YMF744 - AOpen Cobra Sound Card - Install SB-Link Header
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Reply 5 of 9, by wiretap

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From the pictures, it needs a new 20-pin Dip socket for the PAL chip between the ISA 8-bit slots. Hopefully the chip itself doesn't need replaced and can be cleaned without breaking the legs. It also needs a new 8-bit ISA slot, and a new 32-pin DIP socket for the BIOS chip, which also appears to have corroded legs. That SIMM slot is awful close to the battery too and needs a closer evaluation.

Overall, that's a pretty easy and cheap fix. The battery will come off without issue and the solder mask can be cleaned up and reapplied.

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Reply 8 of 9, by cyclone3d

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BastlerMike wrote on 2020-09-23, 15:24:
cyclone3d wrote on 2020-09-23, 15:10:

How are EDRAM SIMMs identified?

They usually have "Ramtron" or "Enhanced" (Enhanced Memory Systems) branded chips on them.

I looked through 200+ 359 72-pin sticks of RAM and not a single one. And that is not counting the sticks I currently have installed in systems.

Almost every single one of those sticks came from scrap lots. There are 197 of them that I need to test to find the size.

Yamaha YMF modified setupds and drivers
Yamaha XG resource repository - updated November 27, 2018
Yamaha YMF7x4 Guide
AW744L II - YMF744 - AOpen Cobra Sound Card - Install SB-Link Header
Epstein didn't kill himself

Reply 9 of 9, by Horun

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Yeah EDRAM is a bit rare, not sure why they tried that method (or RDRAM for that matter ;p ).
Good luck on your board ! Hopefully it can be fixed. That board must have some special meaning to you to search that long for one.
just read thru one Ramtron EDRAM PDF and the cache size is very small compared to standard typical cache:
"4 - 4MB SIMM 16MByte - 8KByte cache
4 - 8MB SIMM 32MByte - 16KByte cache
4-16MB SlMM 64MByte - 32KByte cache"
If that true you may not be able to get more than 32k cache, unless I misread the PDF

Hate posting a reply and have to edit it because it made no sense 😁 First computer was an IBM 3270 workstation with CGA monitor. 🤣 Second computer a 286 12Mhz with real IDE drive ! After that came 386, 486, Pentium, P.Pro and everything after....