Dreamcast WiFi modem

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uglybuddy6
undertow
Posts: 32

Dreamcast WiFi modem

Post#1 » Thu Oct 03, 2019 11:21 pm

I want to first thank everybody projects I combined to make this possible. Thanks to Kazade, pelvicthrustman, and jj1odm!

What i did was fit a Raspberry Pi Zero W, a USB modem, and a line voltage inducer inside the original dreamcast modem. It is all powered from the dreamcast itself so it has no power cords or wires coming out the console. I used Pin 1 for 5V and a ground for the power. The Pi is running DreamPi and connects to my WiFi and then everything goes as normal for a DreamPi.

Unfortunately the plastic post that the screws go into had to be removed so the metal has to be held on with tape. If anybody has any ideas for securing it without using tape please let me know. I would still like easy access just in case I have to modify anything in the future.

I believe I am the first to do such a mod but if I am not please let me know.

Here is some pictures and youtube video demonstrating it using Quake III.
Please excuse the half apart dreamcast and the shoddy camera work I was recording with one hand.

IMG_7156 - Copy.jpg

IMG_7158 - Copy.jpg

IMG_7160 - Copy.jpg

Last edited by uglybuddy6 on Fri Oct 04, 2019 12:12 am, edited 1 time in total.

deluxux
killer
Posts: 275

Re: Dreamcast WiFi modem

Post#2 » Thu Oct 03, 2019 11:35 pm

wow! very impressive! Please share as much info as possible even if it seems pointless to share. I am planning to do the same thing! Thank You!

Krootox1986
lithium
Posts: 40

Re: Dreamcast WiFi modem

Post#3 » Fri Oct 04, 2019 12:05 am

Fair play that's incredible. Such a convenient device could grow the online dreamcast community a hell of a lot

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Bob Dobbs
Sub Genius
Posts: 3385
Contact:

Re: Dreamcast WiFi modem

Post#4 » Fri Oct 04, 2019 12:22 am

Looks like he has a DreamWi-Fi-Pi to start fabricating for sell. That is so cool.
Regards,
Bob Dobbs

Krootox1986
lithium
Posts: 40

Re: Dreamcast WiFi modem

Post#5 » Fri Oct 04, 2019 1:28 am

Bob Dobbs wrote:Looks like he has a DreamWi-Fi-Pi to start fabricating for sell. That is so cool.
Let's hope so. My friends don't want to dabble with line inducers and raspberry pi so if I can get them online in one purchase that would be amazing

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uglybuddy6
undertow
Posts: 32

Re: Dreamcast WiFi modem

Post#6 » Fri Oct 04, 2019 7:45 pm

Deluxux I will try to make a detailed tutorial sometime this coming week.

Krootox1986 and Bob Dobbs is that something people would be interested? I would be willing to do it it would just have to factor in the price of everything and my time.

I also need to talk to Kazade to see if I can find a way to input the wifi SSID and password without having to use another pi

Krootox1986
lithium
Posts: 40

Re: Dreamcast WiFi modem

Post#7 » Fri Oct 04, 2019 11:40 pm

uglybuddy6 wrote:Deluxux I will try to make a detailed tutorial sometime this coming week.

Krootox1986 and Bob Dobbs is that something people would be interested? I would be willing to do it it would just have to factor in the price of everything and my time.

I also need to talk to Kazade to see if I can find a way to input the wifi SSID and password without having to use another pi
I'd definitely be interested. Maybe once you've sat down and worked out the last few fixes and the price you could put up a new topic for orders and gauge interest

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uglybuddy6
undertow
Posts: 32

Re: Dreamcast WiFi modem

Post#8 » Tue Oct 08, 2019 10:52 pm

Here is the tutorial! Now bare with my horrible MS Paint schematics but it illustrates everything I did.

This tutorial assumes you have already are familiar with DreamPi and can solder.
Some these pictures I used from around the web one came from Whiteysnakey!

Parts and tools used:
- 330 ohm resistor
- 0.47 uF capacitor
- a diode I used 1N4741A which is 11V and 1W
- Dell NW147 USB Modem
- Raspberry Pi Zero W
- 8GB micro SD
- soldering iron
- multimeter

Step 1: Unscrew your modem and separate the metal and circuit board from the plastic housing.

Step 2: You will have to get rid of the plastic posts that use to support the modem. I just used some pliers and was able to snap them off cleanly. I circled them in red.

Step 3: Remove the RJ-11 jack from the USB Modem. I cut the pins right at the jack and then there are two soldered connections on either side of the connector.
modem post.jpg

Step 4: I would wire everything to the backside of the Raspberry Pi Zero W like so. PIN 1 of the G2 connection supplies the 5V and then you just need a ground. I connected the power for the Pi here as it has some protections. Also connect the Data lines from the USB Modem like so.
power modem to pi.jpg

Step 5: I soldered up the 330 ohm resistor, the diode, and the 0.47 uF capacitor to the DC-DC boost converter. Use a multimeter and adjust the pot to 9 Vs or so. pelvicthrustman runs his at 10.5 v so it doesn't have to be exact.

Step 6: It gets a little tricky here. You are going to solder the line voltage inducer, USB Modem and the Dreamcast Modem. The red line is PIN 3 and the green line PIN 4 on a RJ-11 connector. PIN 3 connects from the USB Modem PIN 3 to the LVI on both sides of the capacitor and then to DC Modem on PIN 3. The USB modem is nice and labels where 1 and 6 are. The dreamcast isn't but the above picture should be correct. PIN 4 is straight from the USB modem to dremcast modem.

Step 7: Connect power to the USB Modem and the DC-DC boost converter. I used the GPIO pins on the Pi to supply the power.
modem line indcuer dc.jpg


Step 8: Cover with lots of electrical tape to prevent shorts and place carefully inside the plastic case. In ended up placing the DC-DC boost converter over the Conexant chip but if your using a Model B it will be a Sega chip. The Modem was very close to the RJ-11 on the Dreamcast modem. The Raspberry Pi is right behind the USB modem.
modem sandwhich.jpg


Final thoughts - I haven't found a good way to configure the wifi without either connecting to the Pi with a Mini-HDMI or using another Pi and setting up the WIFI and then moving the SD Card over. I tried the wpa_supplicant.conf and OTG mode for the Pi to my desktop. I was thinking this might be more trouble than it's worth but if Dream Pi could create a hotspot that you could connect and then SSH to to configure everything that could be another solution.

I haven't found a good way to secure the metal outside to the modem so as of now I have just taped it. This is a snug fit so plan accordingly.

I hope this helps Deluxux or anyone else trying to recreate what I did. If you have suggestions to improve this please let me know.

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MrBlueSky
rebel
Posts: 22

Re: Dreamcast WiFi modem

Post#9 » Wed Oct 09, 2019 1:04 pm

That's great ! Thank you uglybuddy6 for sharing all this information. I will try this for sure.
Maybe we can use an SD to TF adaptator cable and a little cut in the Dreamcast for an easier configuration of the Pi ?
Dreamcast Now: The Blues Brothers

uglybuddy6
undertow
Posts: 32

Re: Dreamcast WiFi modem

Post#10 » Wed Oct 09, 2019 5:59 pm

MrBlueSky wrote:That's great ! Thank you uglybuddy6 for sharing all this information. I will try this for sure.
Maybe we can use an SD to TF adaptator cable and a little cut in the Dreamcast for an easier configuration of the Pi ?

That is a great idea! It would allow for easy upgrades for DreamPi! I found this 10cm SD to TF adaptator cable. I wish they had a smaller cable. I will try this out next month, I will be doing a Model B modem I will report back with how that goes.

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