History of "CT creation" audio boards

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Audio boards for conversion kits

Presentation of kit specific audio board "Christian Tabart" for SYSTEM 1 and 80.


In the mid-1980s, transformation kits for GOTTLIEB SYSTEM-1 and SYSTEM-80 were produced by a French operator: Christian Tabart. These kits consisted of a new playfield, a new backglass as well as a different cabinet decoration.

Three kits were produced:

  • The SAHARA LOVE - in 1985, based on SYSTEM-1
  • The GRAND HUIT - in 1985, based on SYSTEM-80 widebody (mainly Panthera)
  • The HEXAGONE - in 1986, based on SYSTEM-1 (Genie)

Technically these kits included different original GOTTLIEB elements and there was no development of specific game ROM.

However, several specific audio boards have been developed for these kits. Their technology is very different from what is usually encountered at GOTTLIEB.

Audio board "CT 8535" for GRAND HUIT and SAHARA LOVE

It is the first board produced, built on a Zilog Z80 architecture with a RAM 6810 and an EPROM 2764. The generation of sounds, as well as the input/output ports are entrusted to a AY-3-8912 of PSG type.

CT board

The connection is simple since the card has only one connector with 2 x 12 pins. It is similar to that of the MA-55 board (with 6530) of the SYSTEM-80, but with some variants.

As the amplifier used (TDA2002) does not require a symetric voltage, the two 12 V AC inputs are not connected. The board is satisfied with the 12 V DC power supply, as well as 5 V, already available on the 12-pin SYSTEM-80 connector. Pin 2 (not used in SYSTEM-80) was also intended as an additional command input, but will never be used in the end.

The GRAND HUIT kit being built on a SYSTEM-80 (panthera) base, could therefore be directly connected to this board without having to modify the wiring.

The imposing heatsink on which a TIP110 and LM340T5 are installed, as well as the large capacitor, constitute a power regulation and are only useful if the board is used in a SYSTEM-1. Therefore, on some GRAND HUIT kits, these components have not even been mounted.

CT board

The board can also be used in a SYSTEM-1, since the 2x12 connector has additional pins. Two pins are provided as additional command inputs, but will never be used in the end. A pin is used to power the board from an AC voltage.

The SAHARA LOVE kit being built on a SYSTEM-1 base having the 9-pin connector for a "3-tone" sound card. An adapter was then required, both for the power supply, as well as for rewiring the control inputs.

Adapter CT Adapter CT

Audio board "CT 8630" for HEXAGONE

This board is built on a Zilog Z80 architecture, with a RAM 6810 and an EPROM 27128 (of which only 8 KB are usable). The generation of sounds, as well as the input/output ports are entrusted to a YAMAHA YM2203 circuit. This is FM-OPN type and is associated with a DAC YM3014.

CT board

In terms of connections, there is the classic connection of a SYSTEM-1 audio board (12 pins), as well as a connector type "3 tones" (9 pins) which is not used. A double connector is used to connect the contact matrix. The card uses the latter to detect certain events and play particular sounds. It is also used to supply the board with 5 volts (no regulator being installed, unlike SYSTEM-1). The TDA2002 amplifier is powered by a simple 12 VAC rectification.

The HEXAGONE kit being built on a SYSTEM-1 (genie) base, could therefore be directly connected to this board without having to modify the wiring.

The PSG section (similar to an AY-3-8910) is not used, the ABC channels are not wired or programmed in the ROM.

Similarly, the board was designed to receive a second synthesis circuit YM3526 (FM-OPL) as well as another YM3014. These have never been installed or integrated into the programming of the board.

We have rebuilt this board identical to the orignal.

Last update of this page: May 13th, 2020

French Tech


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