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The SnesBox!


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#1 boolean   Members   -  Reputation: 1702

Posted 01 March 2005 - 01:16 AM

One of my mates has just finished an Electrical and Computer Engineering course, and as such has been making quite a few project systems in his spare time. One of these systems is the SnesBox, a windows XP installation with an 80GB HDD with every NES, SNES, and Sega Mega drive rom ever made stored on it (nothing too new though to avoid legality problems). The system is encased in an original Super Nintendo case, complete with two authentic controllers, and has the power controlled by the actual power switch on the snes box. This means that from the outside the entire box acts like a normal super Nintendo system, even having a Mario XP boot screen when you start it up [smile]. Since the box is running on a PC motherboard (a mini-atx), there is a USB keyboard and mouse hooked up to it as well. This means that it can also be used to chat over the internet. He has recently tried to get N64 roms working, but this has two problems: There is something that is causing MASSIVE slowdown with a lot of the roms, which could be attributed to the video card. Also, they are still pretty new games, so a lot of people don’t like the idea of these roms being downloaded. SPECS: Hardware: Motherboard: EPIA M10000 Nehemiah RAM: 512DDR Kingmax HD: 40GB Hitachi 2.5" Power Supply: 60 Watt Morex Case: Modified Super Nintendo PAL version Specs: Clock speed: 1Ghz Bus speed: 266MHz Features: - Full use of front gameports via printer port interface - Functional power button and reset switch - Original power LED utilized - True to original snes look - no mods to front or top Cooling: - Top section: 30mm brushless fan(rear) - CPU: 40mm stock brushless fan - Power Supply and Hard disk: 25mm brushless fan(under motherboard) Power Consumption: - Standby: 4W - Idle: 28W - DivX: 35W (tested with a 112kbps DivX @ 320x240 running on VLC media player) - SNES emu: 41W (tested with ZSNES v1.42 running `FZERO' @ 640x480 Full Screen + 2xSAI engine) Capability: - Perfect playback of high quality DivX(no artifacts nor pausing) - Perfect SNES and Megadrive(Genesis) emulation with full 2xSAI rendering (and all 8-bit consoles) Applications: - Media box - Emulation station - Internet - Desktop publishing In total the system came to around AU$500. The Snesbox works great, and I have had a hell of a lot of fun playing old snes roms against friends all over again. All in all, it kicks mofo ass. From what I can tell, this is better than any of the other SnesBox systems out there, since it handles heat a lot better, uses all the existing buttons on the case for power and control, and still has the cartridge protector slot in working order (animalsnes is missing one). //Edit: The system has actually been upgraded with a new mobo, fan and RAM since these photos were taken.

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Full version and Demo Version available on the Android app store.


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#2 Evil Steve   Members   -  Reputation: 1955

Posted 01 March 2005 - 01:22 AM

Woah, that rocks! Where can I buy one? ;)

#3 Scyllinice   Members   -  Reputation: 707

Posted 01 March 2005 - 01:23 AM

How much would he charge someone to build one if given the SNES?

#4 Toolmaker   Members   -  Reputation: 935

Posted 01 March 2005 - 01:41 AM

Your friend should read the nintendo site. They state on their site that owning ROMS(Even if you do own the original cartrigdes yourself) is illegal.

I'm not here to make sure he's paying the rest of his life to Nintendo for copyright infringement, but I advise he's not going to sell these systems(Even if he does, he should make sure there are no copyrighted things are on the system).

Just a word of warning...

Toolmaker

Toolmaker salutes mother Tiberia[My website] - [My Dune II Remake Dev Blog]/* -Earth is 98% full. Please delete anybody you can.*/

#5 boolean   Members   -  Reputation: 1702

Posted 01 March 2005 - 01:44 AM

I can assure you this is for a personal project. I tried convincing him to make me one, and he flat out told me 'No'. [smile]. I would say that as long as he does not try and sell the system with all the roms inside, Nintendo would not mind (I remember Sony saying a similar thing a while back: "We don't care if you copy SOME games for personal use, but as soon as you try and sell them, consider yourself busted'

[Android] Stupid Human Castles - If Tetris had monsters with powers and were attacking human castles. "4/5 - frandroid.com"

Full version and Demo Version available on the Android app store.


#6 Evil Steve   Members   -  Reputation: 1955

Posted 01 March 2005 - 01:57 AM

Going a little off-topic: Why is it illegal to get the ROMs if you own the game? That's like saying that you're not allowed to make backups of your PC games (Does anyone actually do that?) It just strikes me as particularly stupid...

#7 Toolmaker   Members   -  Reputation: 935

Posted 01 March 2005 - 02:01 AM

Raed the DMCA(Or whatever it's called) act. It's illegal in the US to make backup copies of software you legally own.

The laws are different per country. For instance, I'm allowed to make 1 backup copy for personal use in my country.

Toolmaker

Toolmaker salutes mother Tiberia[My website] - [My Dune II Remake Dev Blog]/* -Earth is 98% full. Please delete anybody you can.*/

#8 Ra   Members   -  Reputation: 1062

Posted 01 March 2005 - 02:03 AM

I hate when doing what's legally right and doing what's morally right are two entirely different things. [depressed]

#9 Evil Steve   Members   -  Reputation: 1955

Posted 01 March 2005 - 02:07 AM

Quote:
Original post by Toolmaker
Raed the DMCA(Or whatever it's called) act. It's illegal in the US to make backup copies of software you legally own.

The laws are different per country. For instance, I'm allowed to make 1 backup copy for personal use in my country.
That sucks. I think you're allowed to make backups of software you purchase here too (Well, I hope you are, I've done it a few times before when the CD started getting all scrated up. Hooray for C&C Red Alert ;))
/me stops derailing this thread

#10 Cypher19   Members   -  Reputation: 768

Posted 01 March 2005 - 02:33 AM

Man, looks like all he needs is to etch out a new back for the Super Nintendo Super Famicom and then he's set!

#11 Boris Karloff   Members   -  Reputation: 484

Posted 01 March 2005 - 03:17 AM

Quote:
Original post by Toolmaker
The laws are different per country. For instance, I'm allowed to make 1 backup copy for personal use in my country.


Actually, you're allowed to make as many backup copies as you want in your country. You paid for those backups with the extra money they charged you when buying your HD's and CD-R's.

#12 Nemesis2k2   Members   -  Reputation: 1045

Posted 01 March 2005 - 03:23 AM

That's absolutely awesome. I have a sudden urge to do a similar thing with one of my original Nintendo's.

#13 OBeH   Members   -  Reputation: 194

Posted 01 March 2005 - 03:37 AM

Quote:
Original post by Evil Steve
Going a little off-topic: Why is it illegal to get the ROMs if you own the game? That's like saying that you're not allowed to make backups of your PC games (Does anyone actually do that?) It just strikes me as particularly stupid...


I think it has to do with the DMCA and copyright protection circumvention. The NES cartridges had some codes they sent back and forth to make sure they were "authentic."

#14 darookie   Members   -  Reputation: 1437

Posted 01 March 2005 - 03:39 AM

What I don't aunderstand about the whole copywrong issue is, that there are tons of great games for these systems and some of them just weren't released in North America/Europe. So since not even the hardware is sold/in production anymore, what 's the problem with that? There are/were even some hpbbyist translation projects for some of these games (Seikken Densu II aka Secret Of Mana 2?).
If find this no-no-policy riduculous and I'd wish for all ROMS being out of production/sale to become PD after some (say 10) years, but I guess this is just wishful thinking *sigh*...


#15 Toolmaker   Members   -  Reputation: 935

Posted 01 March 2005 - 03:53 AM

Quote:
Original post by boolean
I can assure you this is for a personal project. I tried convincing him to make me one, and he flat out told me 'No'. [smile]. I would say that as long as he does not try and sell the system with all the roms inside, Nintendo would not mind (I remember Sony saying a similar thing a while back: "We don't care if you copy SOME games for personal use, but as soon as you try and sell them, consider yourself busted'


Ok, forgot what I said.

One word: "Cool".

Back to the copyright thing again though and the quote "We don't care if you copy SOME games for personal use, but as soon as you try and sell them, consider yourself busted".

There is something weird in that. Because basicly, you could bend that quote all the way you want. For instance(This is used as an example and the statement is FALSE), when I say: "I copied Microsoft Visual Studio.NET 2003 Expensive++ edition for personal use", I could apply that quote, and state that Microsoft doesn't care.

I highly doubt that MS will care if I did, since many people who've used the IDE will actually buy it when they go professional(Since they already know the package, etc.). If I used MSVC and loved it, the chance I'll buy a Borland IDE + compiler is very small.

Toolmaker

Toolmaker salutes mother Tiberia[My website] - [My Dune II Remake Dev Blog]/* -Earth is 98% full. Please delete anybody you can.*/

#16 Gourgy   Banned   -  Reputation: 234

Posted 01 March 2005 - 04:14 AM

Very cool.

#17 Oluseyi   Staff Emeritus   -  Reputation: 1670

Posted 01 March 2005 - 04:47 AM

Quote:
Original post by Toolmaker
Your friend should read the nintendo site. They state on their site that owning ROMS(Even if you do own the original cartrigdes yourself) is illegal.
Bzzt! Wrong. Downloading ROMs is like downloading MP3s - it's legal if you own the copyrighted material already. Uploading either one for download, however, is emphatically not legal. Funny, eh?

Quote:
Original post by Toolmaker
Raed the DMCA(Or whatever it's called) act. It's illegal in the US to make backup copies of software you legally own.
Bzzt! Wrong. You are allowed to make a backup copy of software you own. What you are not allowed to do is circumvent copy protection. That means that if the software contains copy protection such as asking for a key of sorts, the copy must as well. And therein lies the problem. Most people want to interpret "backup" as "unprotected copy."

Sorry, no dice.

Quote:
Original post by darookie
So since not even the hardware is sold/in production anymore, what 's the problem with that?
Consider the recent Namco Arcade Classics collections that have been released for Xbox, PS2, etc. If the rights to those games, most of which are about 20 years old, had reverted to the public domain after 10 years, Namco wouldn't be able to bilk us for games we've already played. But don't blame Namco. Blame fucking Disney, who got patent and trademark law changed so Mickey Mouse, etc wouldn't fall into the public domain!

Quote:
Original post by Toolmaker
Back to the copyright thing again though and the quote "We don't care if you copy SOME games for personal use, but as soon as you try and sell them, consider yourself busted".
That's not a statement of law, that's the statement of one company, Sony, so don't apply it to the products/rights of any other company. The reason it's relevant is because patent and/or copyright law, I forget which, holds that a product shall revert to public domain if it is not "vigorously defended" (their language, not mine) by the rights holder. This is why Nintendo cracks down so fiercly on Metroid and Zelda "tributes": if they don't, those properties will no longer be theirs. The sole caveat is that the rights holder must demonstrably have become aware of the infringement, which is why making a Harry Potter Quidditch game and distributing it solely by SneakerNet amongst your family and friends is not a problem.


Finally, boolean, please tell your friend that he's done some bitchin' work there! Very nice, very cool.

#18 Nemesis2k2   Members   -  Reputation: 1045

Posted 01 March 2005 - 04:53 AM

Quote:
The reason it's relevant is because patent and/or copyright law, I forget which, holds that a product shall revert to public domain if it is not "vigorously defended" (their language, not mine) by the rights holder. This is why Nintendo cracks down so fiercly on Metroid and Zelda "tributes": if they don't, those properties will no longer be theirs.

It's neither actually. That rule relates to trademark law. This means you can make your Metroid or Zelda tribute game, as long as you don't actually use those words anywhere in them.

#19 Binomine   Members   -  Reputation: 538

Posted 01 March 2005 - 04:58 AM

Quote:
Original post by Evil Steve
That sucks. I think you're allowed to make backups of software you purchase here too (Well, I hope you are, I've done it a few times before when the CD started getting all scrated up.
Here's the law as best as I understand it in the US.

You're allowed to make a single copy for archival purposes in addition to whatever you have. You can use this copy as long as both copies are not in use at the same time. (such as one person having two computers, he can't use Word at the same time on both computers).

You cannot circumvent any copy protection to make the archival copy. In a billion years, when Disney finally allows Mickey Mouse to go into public domain, you will still not be allowed to circumvent copy protection for any pd nintendo game.

Now, you have to ask yourself, are you circumventing anything by making a ROM of a game you have and using a legal emulator.

It's untested in court, so there is no answer.

#20 darookie   Members   -  Reputation: 1437

Posted 01 March 2005 - 05:03 AM

Quote:
Original post by Oluseyi
Quote:
Original post by darookie
So since not even the hardware is sold/in production anymore, what 's the problem with that?
Consider the recent Namco Arcade Classics collections that have been released for Xbox, PS2, etc. If the rights to those games, most of which are about 20 years old, had reverted to the public domain after 10 years, Namco wouldn't be able to bilk us for games we've already played. But don't blame Namco. Blame fucking Disney, who got patent and trademark law changed so Mickey Mouse, etc wouldn't fall into the public domain!

But wouldn't Namco be able to do that, too if the games were PD? I mean you'd still need a license from Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo to make games or their recent platforms, don't you?
Some possibility to still make this legal would be a slight relaxation, which makes going PD dependable on actual use of the trademark/IP, e.g. if Namco didn't port/re-released a classic title or didn't use the game's theme for more than 10 years, it would become PD automatically.
So maintaining the rights would fully fall into the responsibility of the copyright owner, allowing for a very transparent handling of this.
But I'm not a lawyer so... [sad]






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