50/60hz

PBrookfield

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The manuals for Spike-era Sterns are quite low on this kind of detail, but at the very least for the older Sterns, they use certain connections on the transformer the same as any other Pinball:

http://www.elwoodsgallery.be/pinball/manuals/Manual_Stern_Shrek.pdf
Jump to page 105.

After a bit more digging it seems Marco Pinball has the answer - as the Spike-era machines don't have these kind of big, bulky transformers, they will just have a quite boring switching power supply - http://www.marcospecialties.com/pinball-parts/011-5001-00 - and there will be no need to set anything up (other than changing all of the slow-blow fuses.) I imagine that Frequency screen will be information only.

So to finalise - no, it's set by hardware - but you can't change it and you won't need to, thanks to the magic of the modern switching power supply that can eat 100-240V at 50/60Hz and still give you the result you want.
 

stoptap

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I know for a fact that the SAM games are firmware. My Transformers lost its region identity after a failed code update. I had to send the CPU board back to Stern for re-programming.
 
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Neil McRae

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there are two issues, ability to take 110v or 220v which is a hardware issue and easily checked - from what I can tell Spike seems to be able to do this without modification. SAM needs the adjustment of the plug thing.

Second issue is detection of this and willingness to use a 60Hz machine in a 50Hz market and vice versa. In my view this is software/firmware (like consoles of old) issue.
 
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Neil McRae

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I suspect new born machines when they go into test are set ala that picture - then they are locked. Like DVD players on laptops you could change region 5 times then it locked down.
 
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Arv

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It's probably in a hidden menu. Just like the hidden one in bally/Williams games.
 

Pick Holder

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You will find this wont be that easy to hack/crack.
On SAM sterns you used to have to install a small board on top of the main PCB to get rid of the 50/60hz region lock.

It was and still is a way to stop grey imports.

There are no secret menus on a bally/williams as they worked around the world after you changed the transformer links, varistor and main fuse.
 

Neil McRae

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You will find this wont be that easy to hack/crack.
On SAM sterns you used to have to install a small board on top of the main PCB to get rid of the 50/60hz region lock.

It was and still is a way to stop grey imports.

There are no secret menus on a bally/williams as they worked around the world after you changed the transformer links, varistor and main fuse.
Yes but the video shows a menu that all the games have serial number, location, clock cycle etc set - if there is a secret menu then it would be simple to hack.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 
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Courtney Blush

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Unlikely if a story I read in the past was accurate. A US Soldier was stationed in europe and he had his collection of Stern machines shipped over. Refusing to pay for new machines etc Stern changed the programming in them to work.
 

Pick Holder

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Unlikely if a story I read in the past was accurate. A US Soldier was stationed in europe and he had his collection of Stern machines shipped over. Refusing to pay for new machines etc Stern changed the programming in them to work.
Could be a Chinese whispers story.
The old SAM board set requires a different program on a write only chip. You can buy a hack to bypass this.

You'll probably find the local distributor swapped the cpu boards as a good will/publicity stunt. Plus it was a US soldier which makes it a reason why stern did it.