Using Pinball-Browser to colorize your game
Pinball-Browser from Oga83 can be used to modify Stern SAM and Stern Spike system ROMs PIN2DMD supports SmartDMD Inframe palette assignment technology. You can colorize your game by mapping the existing shades of a single color to different colors of a palette.
The basic steps to get a colorized ROM are :
- open the ROM file of the game you want to colorize with pinball-browser
- open the smartDMD configuration file smartdmd.txt which contains palette information.
A template can be downloaded here smartdmd.txt
- Add some palettes and assign colors in the smartdmd configuration
- select smartdmd as palette in the dropdownbox
- edit the picture with the tools and adjust the palette in the editor using CTRL klick to modify colors
- save the ROM and smartdmd.txt file
Now you you need to convert the palettes in smartdmd.txt to a pin2dmd.pal file which is readable by the pin2dmd device.
- load palettes from smartdmd.txt using pin2dmd editor
- export palettes as pin2dmd.pal
To enjoy your work you need to
- upload/save pin2dmd.pal to pin2dmd device
- upload ROM file to your pinball machine or replace existing ROM in pinmame
Pinball Browser offers 2 methods to pass the palette information from the ROM to pin2dmd. In-frame and Side-Channel(Serial). You can select the colorization method under the SmartDMD tab in pinball browser.
More information about that can be found here
SmartDMD Colorization modes
Using existing Colorizations from the repository
Pinball Browser has a builtin repository for projects uploaded by the community. It can be accessed through the dropdown menu next to the play button under the macro tab. Some macros do not only patch the firmware but also create the smartDMD.txt files needed for the colorization. By running the macro against the original firmware it reproduces the steps exactly like the author did them when he created the firmware modification.
Serial Sidechannel connection
For the serial Side-Channel method you need a serial connection from the DB9 connector on your SAM board to the pin2dmd RS232 connector pins on your pin2dmd pcb. A TTL – RS232 (MAX232) converter is already part of the pin2dmd pcb from V3 of the shield. For orientation make sure Pin3 from the DB9 is connected to the RX pin of the shield (Pin3 on V3 and V4). Pin1 on the shield is TX and is connected to Pin2 on DB9 and Pin2 on the shield is Ground which connects to Pin5 of the DB9. A simple Side-Channel cable may look like this
For more information about pinball-browser please read here