030-1277-002 MXI TRAM modules on an MXE board?

SGI hardware problems, solutions, tips, hacks, etc.
Forum rules
Any posts concerning pirated software or offering to buy/sell/trade commercial software are subject to removal.
jebmayers
Posts: 107
Joined: Tue May 10, 2016 11:13 pm
Location: Oxfordshire, UK

030-1277-002 MXI TRAM modules on an MXE board?

Unread postby jebmayers » Thu Aug 18, 2016 9:46 am

Hi guys,

Long story short, more ebay woes - bought 3 x 030-1263-002 TRAM modules for my Octane MXE board and actually received 3 x 030-1277-002 TRAM modules for an MXI board. Little chance of returning it as it was bought via a friend in the US and despite asking him to check before sending, he didn't.

So the question is will the TRAM work on the MXE board albeit at a slower than normal rate? Or will it just not work at all? Or will it fry the TRAM? Or the board? Or both?

Any advice would be much appreciated ;o)

Cheers,

Jeb

User avatar
vishnu
Donor
Donor
Posts: 3136
Joined: Sun Mar 18, 2007 3:25 pm
Location: Minneapolis, Minnesota USA

Re: 030-1277-002 MXI TRAM modules on an MXE board?

Unread postby vishnu » Thu Aug 18, 2016 9:56 am

jebmayers wrote:Hi guys,

Long story short, more ebay woes - bought 3 x 030-1263-002 TRAM modules for my Octane MXE board and actually received 3 x 030-1277-002 TRAM modules for an MXI board. Little chance of returning it as it was bought via a friend in the US and despite asking him to check before sending, he didn't.

So the question is will the TRAM work on the MXE board albeit at a slower than normal rate? Or will it just not work at all? Or will it fry the TRAM? Or the board? Or both?

Any advice would be much appreciated ;o)

Cheers,

Jeb

According to this thread (which includes input from an SGI engineer) it might work:

http://www.yqcomputer.com/783_1435_1.htm
Project:
Temporarily lost at sea...
Plan:
World domination! Or something...

:Tezro: :Octane2:

jebmayers
Posts: 107
Joined: Tue May 10, 2016 11:13 pm
Location: Oxfordshire, UK

Re: 030-1277-002 MXI TRAM modules on an MXE board?

Unread postby jebmayers » Thu Aug 18, 2016 10:26 am

Thanks for the reply Vishnu - it's a bit of a catch 22 as I don't even know if these modules are working to being with! I do have a spare SE board that I could sacrifice first to spare my SSE/MXE board.

Jeb

jebmayers
Posts: 107
Joined: Tue May 10, 2016 11:13 pm
Location: Oxfordshire, UK

Re: 030-1277-002 MXI TRAM modules on an MXE board?

Unread postby jebmayers » Thu Aug 18, 2016 12:06 pm

So I bit the bullet. All 3 seem to work in as far as they get into IRIX and give the correct hinv - SE gives ESI with texture option, SSE gives EMXI. The Hong Kong demo runs a lot smoother with the EMXI board than it did with my old SE board (which has a genuine 030-1263-002) so that seems to have been a success. Whether it would be any faster with two 030-1263-002s who knows....

However, the 3rd module (which is labelled rev A instead of rev B like the other two) installed on the SE card wouldn't run the HK demo - bizarrely it dumped be back to the login screen as it reached the part where it processes the textures. I didn't try the other two modules with the HK demo in an SE config, but I assume they would have been fine as they work on the EMXI board.

The HK demo definitely works with my SE + 030-1263-002 TRAM so I am suspicious this might be the slower type referred to in the link Vishnu provided.

Not quite the disaster I first feared at least!

Jeb

jebmayers
Posts: 107
Joined: Tue May 10, 2016 11:13 pm
Location: Oxfordshire, UK

Re: 030-1277-002 MXI TRAM modules on an MXE board?

Unread postby jebmayers » Thu Aug 18, 2016 11:48 pm

So just for completeness and potentially help anyone else attempting the same thing:

030-1277-002 labelled revision B worked
030-1277-002 labelled revision A didn't work. Boots to IRIX, reports correct board but bombs out running the Hong Kong performer demo at the stage where it usually loads the textures.

Confirmed that the Hong Kong demo with my MXE/EMXI board using the 2 x 030-1277-002 labelled revision B runs twice as fast as my SE card + 030-1263-002.

Jeb

jebmayers
Posts: 107
Joined: Tue May 10, 2016 11:13 pm
Location: Oxfordshire, UK

Re: 030-1277-002 MXI TRAM modules on an MXE board?

Unread postby jebmayers » Sat Aug 20, 2016 1:34 pm

Hi All,

I decided to do some more investigation into this issue just in case it helps anyone. You guys have been helpfull with my stuff so far, so time to give something back!

Confirmed 030-1277-002 Rev B and 030-1263-002 Rev A worked together on ESSI board to give EMXI.
ESI + 030-1277-002 Rev B Max Hong Kong demo frame = 93.5ms
ESI + 030-1263-002 Rev A Max Honk Kong demo frame = 91.2ms
EMXI (Mix 1277 and 1263 TRAM) Max Hong Kong demo frame = 50.0ms
EMXI (2 x 1277 TRAM) Max Hong Kong demo frame = 50.2ms *edited this line as it was wrong, originally said 2 x 1263 TRAM*

So It appears that the slower 32MHz part does give slightly slower performance on the ESI card, so I would expect 2 37MHz parts on the EMXI board would give slightly better performance.

I then pulled the boards apart to get the details for all the parts. I have photos for all of these if anyone is interested. Here is a table of what I found:

Code: Select all

TRAM Board type     Works with   ASIC details     TRAM details       Clock Crystal
                    E-type                        (4 chips)

030-1263-002 Rev A  Yes          099-9031-008/5   SGI/ISD1996        37.000 S3C9645
                                 TE1 REVD         TOSHIBA
                                 SGI/ISD 1996     TRAM 1 REVE
                                 0281G3310        099-9030-003
                                 27R29007TO       JAPAN  9720AAK
                                 T9N65TB-01       G4473A T9N17CW-02
                                 9729NBI

030-1277-002 Rev A  No           099-9031-005     SGI/ISF1996        M 32.000 KDS 7H
                                 TE1 REVD         TOSHIBA
                                 SGI/ISD 1992     TRAM 1 REVE
                                 0281G3310        099-9030-003
                                 27R34022TO       JAPAN 9727AAK
                                 T9N65TB-01       H4429 T9N17CW-02
                                 9734 NBI

030-1277-002 Rev B  Yes          099-9031-005     SGI/ISD 1997       M 32.000 KDS 7K
                                 TE1 REVD         TOSHIBA
                                 SGI/ISD 1996     TRAM 1 REVF
                                 0281G3310        099-9030-007
                                 27R37027TO       T9N17CW-03 JAPAN
                                 T9N65TB-01       9748AAK H8515B
                                 9737 NBI

030-1277-002 Rev B  Yes          099-9031-005     SGI/ISD1997        M 32.000 KDS 7K
                                 TE1 REVD         TOSHIBA
                                 SGI/ISD 1996     TRAM1 REVF
                                 0281G3310        099-9030-007
                                 27R48025TO       T9N17CW-03 JAPAN
                                 T9N65TB-01       9748AAK H8515B
                                 9748 NBI


Interesting things:
1) the 030-1263-002 board has the 8 at the end of the ASIC ID 099-9031-008 crossed out and a 5 put next to it
2) aside from 1) the only major differences between the 030-1263-002 board and the 030-1277-002 Rev A board that doesn't work is the clock crystal (37 MHz vs 32 MHz as expected)
3) I expected to see 37MHz crystals on the 030-1277-002 Rev B boards that do work with the ESI / EMXI boards but I didn't, they were 32MHz. The only differences between these boards and the 030-1277-002 Rev A which doesn't work is the TRAM chips seem to be later revisions (REVF vs REVE).

So considering 2) I wonder if replacing the clock crystal with a 37MHz part would be enough to make it into a working 37MHz part? With this in mind, does anyone have a broken 030-1263-002 they wouldn't mind donating for an experiment? I would pay postage of course.

Jeb
Last edited by jebmayers on Fri Sep 02, 2016 2:25 am, edited 1 time in total.

jebmayers
Posts: 107
Joined: Tue May 10, 2016 11:13 pm
Location: Oxfordshire, UK

Re: 030-1277-002 MXI TRAM modules on an MXE board?

Unread postby jebmayers » Sun Aug 21, 2016 2:02 am

So I have managed to get a clean pull of the 32MHz crystal from my spare 1277 board. This is the hardest part done in my experience - it is miles easier to solder a SMT part than to desolder one! Managed to stab myself in the thumb with a needle thin hot soldering iron bit in the process - at least it was self cauterising!

Now I just need to find a 37.000MHz 7 * 5mm crystal which is proving to be easier said than done - there is an auction for 50 from ebay US for $30 but I am not sure I want to go there just yet as by the time I have paid for shipping and import duties/taxes it will be at least 2x that much. Plus ebay US is how I got into this mess in the first place. Too soon ;o)

Jeb

20160821_081835.jpg

20160821_090434.jpg

robespierre
Posts: 1540
Joined: Mon Sep 12, 2011 2:28 pm
Location: Boston

Re: 030-1277-002 MXI TRAM modules on an MXE board?

Unread postby robespierre » Sun Aug 21, 2016 4:02 am

jebmayers wrote:Now I just need to find a 37.000MHz 7 * 5mm crystal which is proving to be easier said than done

I think that's because 37 MHz is a bit of an odd value: you can easily find parts for 36 or 38 MHz.
There are also many oscillators that are programmable, so you either purchase one blank, and program it with I2C, or else have the supplier program it for you.
:PI: :O2: :Indigo2IMP: :Indigo2IMP:

User avatar
dexter1
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 2730
Joined: Thu Feb 20, 2003 6:57 am
Location: Zoetermeer, The Netherlands

Re: 030-1277-002 MXI TRAM modules on an MXE board?

Unread postby dexter1 » Sun Aug 21, 2016 4:15 am

In the bottom pic it looks like pin 104 on the Toshiba TRAM chip got bent/desoldered. Check that before you resolder a new oscillator.

And BTW, nice work Jeb!
:Crimson: :PI: :Indigo: :O2: :Indy: :Indigo2: :Indigo2IMP:

jebmayers
Posts: 107
Joined: Tue May 10, 2016 11:13 pm
Location: Oxfordshire, UK

Re: 030-1277-002 MXI TRAM modules on an MXE board?

Unread postby jebmayers » Sun Aug 21, 2016 4:27 am

dexter1 wrote:In the bottom pic it looks like pin 104 on the Toshiba TRAM chip got bent/desoldered. Check that before you resolder a new oscillator.


Good spot - slight bent inwards but not broken thankfully! My thumb is a bit hurty now though ;o(

jebmayers
Posts: 107
Joined: Tue May 10, 2016 11:13 pm
Location: Oxfordshire, UK

Re: 030-1277-002 MXI TRAM modules on an MXE board?

Unread postby jebmayers » Sun Aug 21, 2016 4:58 am

robespierre wrote:
jebmayers wrote:Now I just need to find a 37.000MHz 7 * 5mm crystal which is proving to be easier said than done

I think that's because 37 MHz is a bit of an odd value: you can easily find parts for 36 or 38 MHz.
There are also many oscillators that are programmable, so you either purchase one blank, and program it with I2C, or else have the supplier program it for you.


Yeah I think you are right. I'll go down the alternate routes if I fail to find a donor 1263 board, or I can't find a direct replacement. Space is very tight when the heatsink is on to the point where there are recesses in it for the TRAM chips so any solution that doesn't involve direct replacements is going to have to be well thought through!

jebmayers
Posts: 107
Joined: Tue May 10, 2016 11:13 pm
Location: Oxfordshire, UK

Re: 030-1277-002 MXI TRAM modules on an MXE board?

Unread postby jebmayers » Tue Aug 23, 2016 10:23 am

My impatience got the better of me and I ordered the 50 oscillators from US ebay. Hopefully they will be with me next week. Needless to say I am not going to need 50, anyone else interested in any? (depending on the outcome of course!)

Jeb

jebmayers
Posts: 107
Joined: Tue May 10, 2016 11:13 pm
Location: Oxfordshire, UK

Re: 030-1277-002 MXI TRAM modules on an MXE board?

Unread postby jebmayers » Fri Sep 02, 2016 2:42 am

My 37MHz clock oscillators arrived yesterday after having to pay an extra 60% of the price again for VAT and Royal mails £8 flat rate they charge for paying this up front! Grrr.

Anyway, the results.

The 030-1277-002 Rev A TRAM with the 37MHz crystal still doesn't wort ;o( The rub here is that I don't know if the module ever worked as I didn't have an SI card to test it with in the first place. I am suspecting it didn't, if an SI card comes up cheap I will test this theory one day.

The good news. Fitting the 37MHz crystals to the 030-1277-002 Rev B TRAM boards has worked! Here are the timings for the longest frame from the Hong Kong demo, averaged over 3 runs:

EMXI/MXE with 1 x 030-1263-00 TRAM and 1 x 030-1277-002 Rev B @ 37MHz : 49.0ms - ~1ms faster than before
EMXI/MXE with 2 x 030-1277-002 Rev B TRAMs @37MHZ : 48.9ms - ~1ms faster than before

So all in all a success. Sort of. Still annoyed that the guy sold me the wrong parts, argued with me that the 1277 parts were faster based on the ebay prices and that the number is bigger(1263 vs 1277!) and that one appears to be fried, but at least I now have two working 37MHz modules. I also got the conversion time down to about 10 minutes to strip, desolder 32MHz, solder 37MHz, electrically test and then reassemble. Plus about 30 minutes to test in my Origin 2000. Note to self, really must get a cheap Octane if I am going to do more of these, would be so much easier to test with!

My parting thoughts are: I could have saved myself a lot of time, energy and in the end money by going to mapesdhs or axelmagnetic instead of ebay for my TRAM modules, but at least we have learned something and I had some fun along the way! ;o)

Jeb

p.s. my finger healed nicely as well.

jebmayers
Posts: 107
Joined: Tue May 10, 2016 11:13 pm
Location: Oxfordshire, UK

Re: 030-1277-002 MXI TRAM modules on an MXE board?

Unread postby jebmayers » Sun Aug 27, 2017 5:14 am

jebmayers wrote:The 030-1277-002 Rev A TRAM with the 37MHz crystal still doesn't wort ;o( The rub here is that I don't know if the module ever worked as I didn't have an SI card to test it with in the first place. I am suspecting it didn't, if an SI card comes up cheap I will test this theory one day.


Sorry for the thread necro, but I finally got around to testing the 030-1277-002 Rev A TRAM with an SI card and it didn't work. I replaced the 37MHz Crystal with the original 32MHz crystal and that also made no difference. On one run I managed to get some textures displaying with it, but they only had the green colour channel displaying. The SI card works fine with another working TRAM installed, so I am pretty confident that the 030-1277-002 Rev A TRAM was broken to begin with.

For completeness I guess I would have to try a crystal replacement on another 030-1277-002 Rev A TRAM, if one ever comes my way I will do this.

Jeb

User avatar
dexter1
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 2730
Joined: Thu Feb 20, 2003 6:57 am
Location: Zoetermeer, The Netherlands

Re: 030-1277-002 MXI TRAM modules on an MXE board?

Unread postby dexter1 » Sun Aug 27, 2017 2:51 pm

Thanks for the confirmation, jeb. This means that having either a 1263 or 1277 Rev B should be sufficient for adding TRAM to an SE or SSE. 1277 Rev A confirmation is still out.
And i guess your soldering skills have improved greatly :)
:Crimson: :PI: :Indigo: :O2: :Indy: :Indigo2: :Indigo2IMP:


Return to “SGI: Hardware”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google [Bot] and 1 guest