Friday, January 27, 2012

Neo Turf Masters Repair pt2

After having some trouble fixing the problems with my broken NTM cartridge I shelved it and moved on to other things.

If you recall from the previous post, my Turf Masters cartridge is not an original. It's a counterfeit bootleg hackjob. Normally I'm perfectly OK with this, but the problem with bootleg Neo Geo games is that, while they cost less than originals, they are still quite expensive. I paid almost $35 for my copy of Turf Masters. I obviously paid too much for it.

Looking more into the problems my cartridge has, it's become clear that this is not a simple repair job. The boards have been significantly altered to allow the use of flash roms which do not have the same pinout or timings as the original mask roms. I have not been able to reverse-engineer the work that was done to this cartridge because it was fairly sloppy, and finding exact replacement parts for the obviously handmade flash rom adapter boards will be impossible. This is going to make a repair with a reasonable cost impossible as well.

Given the market value of an original NTM cartridge these days, I suspect I can just purchase a replacement for less than it would cost to repair the cartridge. Consider this a lesson in choosing your battles.

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