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Is This An Atari Prototype Chip?


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I'd say the only way to know whether it's a proto or a clone/demo copy would be to dump it and do a bit comparison to the final ROM.  If it's different, it's likely a proto, if it's the same, it's somebody's old school clone or a demo copy that got shown off, passed around, etc.

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52 minutes ago, Code Monkey said:

Any chance it's a retail chip from an ordinary retail cartridge?

No.  It's absolutely not a retail chip, as all those were mask ROMs just like the NES, etc. had.  It's possible that it came out of a retail cart, and contains the retail code, but the only situation I can imagine that happening in would be one of a warranty replacement, comparable to when similar chips have shown up in NES carts that had been sent in for warranty repairs.  But again, the only real way to know for sure what's on it is to dump it and compare it to the regular final/retail ROM that's been floating around online for decades.  If it matches, it's most likely a clone/pirate/whatever but could, however unlikely, be a warrant repair/replacement.  If it's different, then it's most likely some sort of prototype.

I want to say that the Color Dreams/Wisdom Tree games were the only cartridge based games where I ever saw eproms being used as part of the legitimate release.  Everything else that I've ever seen like that has been something else that is 100% non-retail--prototype, clone/pirate, or warranty repair (much rarer than even protos).

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1 hour ago, darkchylde28 said:

No.  It's absolutely not a retail chip, as all those were mask ROMs just like the NES, etc. had.  It's possible that it came out of a retail cart, and contains the retail code, but the only situation I can imagine that happening in would be one of a warranty replacement, comparable to when similar chips have shown up in NES carts that had been sent in for warranty repairs.  But again, the only real way to know for sure what's on it is to dump it and compare it to the regular final/retail ROM that's been floating around online for decades.  If it matches, it's most likely a clone/pirate/whatever but could, however unlikely, be a warrant repair/replacement.  If it's different, then it's most likely some sort of prototype.

I want to say that the Color Dreams/Wisdom Tree games were the only cartridge based games where I ever saw eproms being used as part of the legitimate release.  Everything else that I've ever seen like that has been something else that is 100% non-retail--prototype, clone/pirate, or warranty repair (much rarer than even protos).

Interesting, thanks. I'll report when I receive them, I actually found 69 of these, all different games from wildly different manufacturers. 

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