INTELLIGENT WORK FORUMS
FOR COMPUTER PROFESSIONALS

Log In

Come Join Us!

Are you a
Computer / IT professional?
Join Tek-Tips Forums!
  • Talk With Other Members
  • Be Notified Of Responses
    To Your Posts
  • Keyword Search
  • One-Click Access To Your
    Favorite Forums
  • Automated Signatures
    On Your Posts
  • Best Of All, It's Free!

*Tek-Tips's functionality depends on members receiving e-mail. By joining you are opting in to receive e-mail.

Posting Guidelines

Promoting, selling, recruiting, coursework and thesis posting is forbidden.

Jobs

Can this board be revived. Merlin II R3 processor

Can this board be revived. Merlin II R3 processor

(OP)
I got my old Merlin II processor with R3 laying around that went kaput. Red light stays on and never turns off. That is why we upgraded to the Merlin Legend/Magix CKE5 Processor.

I removed the rechargeable battery and it still won't boot. Replaced several capacitors and again nothing.

I believe a sudden power cycle caused the board to go offline.

I am fairly technical and willing to take the spare time to get it working. With no backup battery on the board you would think it would have cleared the static ram by now to allow it to start from scratch.

What is the next step to restoring this vintage piece of history?

RE: Can this board be revived. Merlin II R3 processor

Short of trying to locate another processor online, I wouldn't put too much effort into trying to resurrect the existing one.

I love2 "FEATURE 00"
http://dexman.webs.com/

RE: Can this board be revived. Merlin II R3 processor

(OP)
Since it is a hobbyist system... I am willing to do so. If at least to learn WHY it isn't working.

RE: Can this board be revived. Merlin II R3 processor

The thing about The MERLIN II is there's no SPM programming, no good way to back it up and the batteries do go bad, and then all the memory is gone.

I ALWAYS replace them with at least a LEGEND R7.0.

That gives all the things you could ever want in a system using ATL Sets. + you can add voicemail.


http://merlinmanswebpage.yolasite.com

RE: Can this board be revived. Merlin II R3 processor

(OP)
The irony is the processor has a Admin port however. At least mine does. it also has that VME bus connector where the PCMCIA card slot would be. Clearly, the designers were planning on a windows/dos SPM for this model. Even my manuals mention that there was a SPM for this.

I wonder if the oscillator/clock went bad. I don't have a logic probe or another backplane/power supply to test this. I do know there is a diagnostic module that can plug into that VME bus type connector. I have seen it on eBay.

The biggest headache is all the chips are soldered in. There is no sockets. so doing a chip swap becomes very difficult.

RE: Can this board be revived. Merlin II R3 processor

On a similar note, One day we (Avaya Tier 3) got a call on a MERLIN II that had a module in it with only 1 PORT. I forget what the tech called the service it had going into it, but we were able to get him to send us the card so we could figure it out. To our surprise, it was a T1 Module. That wasn't even offered on the MERLIN II. More research found that this one was a ONE TIME DEAL, and the support for it previously was done by Bell Labs. They had never even bothered to mention this Monster to us. As I recall, it didn't have a "STANDARD" T1 Module number.

So, there are some "ghosts" of weird things out there some where. Like the 412 ETR Module in my basement. (That does work, BTW)


http://merlinmanswebpage.yolasite.com

RE: Can this board be revived. Merlin II R3 processor

I wont tell you not to waist your time on it. But I would find one somewhere that
works so you can at least do some kind of voltage comparison or resistance comparison.
Even the folks that were trained to work on these component level often had specialized
equipment to speed up the testing and repair of these things.
good luck.



RE: Can this board be revived. Merlin II R3 processor

(OP)
I did a tech video on this, I disassembled the board and show its guts on YouTube. It appears either the RESET line of the 68000 processor is staying active low. The clock is not starting. Here is the link, warning. gets a bit long though as it get to non board issues in the end.

No matter, here is the video link.
https://youtu.be/HcFMm1Tj1Zg

RE: Can this board be revived. Merlin II R3 processor

(OP)
I wonder if the clock oscillator has failed. there are two of them near the MC68000PB chip. Does anyone have a schematic for this board? Would make tracing the problem a bit easier.

Also there is a Merlin 2 diagnostic module on Ebay. would this help to determine if the clock has gone bad. or perhaps the static ram modules.

RE: Can this board be revived. Merlin II R3 processor

I was a TIER-3 Tech Support Engineer, and I worked DIRECTLY with BELL LABS on a lot of things for this product. I have never seen, nor have I ever heard anyone discuss a Schematic for these processors.

You could reverse Engineer to a degree (Connections to and from IC's) but I doubt you'll ever see a schematic.

I must say, you have much more time on your hands than I do, and I've been retired for over 15 Years.


http://merlinmanswebpage.yolasite.com

RE: Can this board be revived. Merlin II R3 processor

(OP)
I take that as a compliment 😎 if course, as Louis Rossmann would say, when you got paying customers, unless they want to pay more than what the board is worth, you swap it out. But, if you want to use it as a learning expirence. You can play with it as you have time.

Red Flag This Post

Please let us know here why this post is inappropriate. Reasons such as off-topic, duplicates, flames, illegal, vulgar, or students posting their homework.

Red Flag Submitted

Thank you for helping keep Tek-Tips Forums free from inappropriate posts.
The Tek-Tips staff will check this out and take appropriate action.

Reply To This Thread

Posting in the Tek-Tips forums is a member-only feature.

Click Here to join Tek-Tips and talk with other members!

Resources

Close Box

Join Tek-Tips® Today!

Join your peers on the Internet's largest technical computer professional community.
It's easy to join and it's free.

Here's Why Members Love Tek-Tips Forums:

Register now while it's still free!

Already a member? Close this window and log in.

Join Us             Close