Before we get to the PlayCards,
here are a few things I'd be happy if you could help me with:

Maybe you have the card or have downloaded a card image of Roland FANXRUP1 or FANXUP1 Fantom-X V2 update that was once floating around the web? If you have the card but don't know how to create an exact backup of it, I'll help you with it - it's easy.

Although unlikely, maybe you have Roland VP-9000 demo disk demo song files?

Or maybe copied floppy files Casio WK-1800 Accessory Disk (demo disk that came with it)? It doesn't seem to be for download on any casio support and fan sites. You might like the main reason I'm lookig for it - it is clearly a fun attack vector to non-destructively dump its maskrom (in Hitachi H8) since it actually allows to execute arbitrary code! While dumping can be done even by blinking a led chdk-style, in this case there's already initialized and working uart for that. Further, if all is well, waveroms (8Mbyte total) can also be dumped this way, since H8 can quickly access them, and procedure to do this for studying will be in the maskrom. On the other hand, I'll very likely at some point just desolder and dump waveroms anyways - but it could be more epic to dump it via diskette and midi.

I'm looking for an Alesis XT:C rom dump and also Alesis XT-Reverb rom dump, Here's a MidiVerb dump for you in exchange. In fact, you can find tons of my dumped roms on this great webpage.

Also - maybe you have an Alesis Wedge rom dump? Or, at least, have made some photos of its inside?

It seems that Yamaha CS6x/CS6R supplied accessory CD (with old original software and preload audio clips) is not amongst the available support downloads -  maybe you have it and can dump its contents?

It seems there is a Yamaha PSR-40 service manual floating around the web, but I couldn't yet get one. I'd be happy to get PDF of that. That synth, while immensly boring and shallow (despite the "variation" knobs) works on Zilog Z80, so can be made much more fun at some point. (I've, of course, dumped the rom and did a little bit of disassembly for it as well).

Any of the ART MultiVerb, ProVerb or similar reverbs/effect rom dumps are also of interest for me, for example I'm looking for ART Proverb 200 - here's an ART Multiverb LT dump for you in exchange.

It seems that there exists a version 2.02 firmware dump of Lexicon MPX-500 - maybe you have it?

Judging by the immense popularity of PSS-51 in eastern europe, aisa and amongst russians, it is quite hard to believe that no one have dumped its roms. Maybe you have dumps of Yamaha PSS-51 program, abc and/or waveroms? Or maybe you know one for local pickup somewhere within Baltic states?

And maybe someone has already desoldered and dumped PSR-6000 waveroms? Those are three pieces of DIP42 chips, each 2Mbyte (besides two more chips with styles and then two DIP40 with program and demo songs). I am somewhat tempted to grab one from the local trash market to do this, yet not sure if I realy have to. And I don't have a clue when I could actually get to desoldering it, even if I' ll grab one now. Still GEW9 stuff seems rather interesting and not that common to come by in the keyboards.

In regards to spare parts and hardware things that I'm missing, maybe you have this:
* Display from early 2000s - Kyocera KCG057QV1DB-G00 found in old Fantom-X keyboards (Roland part code: 03560889 "DISPLAY UNIT LCD KCG057QV1DB-G00").

If you do, please email me!

Yamaha PlayCard

Since I have reverse engineered the playcard modulation/loading format and made tools to load (encode/modulate) playcard bins back to the keybord I though should be a page about them!

Binary contents I haven't yet reversed any more than the first 001 bits are quite definitely card type. Since I don't have any MSX Graphics Card, or cards that required loading both sides (if those actually existed - I've only found information about the two-sided loading process for such cards in manuals).

Yamaha Playcards
  • Tons of cards getting digitized and decoded into small bins
Yamaha PC-100 sequencer sram capture
  • Sequence loading/playback sram capture

Tremendous thanks go to Jayson Smith for beta testing and collaboration on this project!

Currently under construction. I am going to fill it up, whenever I will find some spare time for doing it.

Data in PlayCards

Cards contain very little amount of data: of over two hundred that I have, all range between 672 to 3464 useful data bits per card!
It is just 84 to 433 bytes per a complete song, with most cards being around ~390 bytes.

I've only seen a single low-resolution picture, scanned from some magazine, featuring a graphics playcard for MSX - did they realy exist in the wild?
There id a type marker in the header of playcards (all music ones have 001) that might be there to distingush graphics ones and, perhaps, some other planned ones.

Also, I do not have an MSX card reader CR-1 and its cartrige, and cannot find any picture of their insides.
If you do have one, you could disassemble it and take photos of its innards. It should, at least, have some discrete or opamp amplifier, or an IEF chip inside. The cartridge might likely contain some other chip(s) besides a rom - probably at least a comparator (though could be made of a couple of transistors) and some glue logic.
Depending on what's inside of it, you could then use the tool (below) to load any playcards into MSX - possibly just even playing the WAV audio into an improvised connection adapter instead of swiping or interfacing through inductive coupling.

Tools for PlayCards

Since I figured out the modulation and processed all of the audio recordings into binaries, I had to make a few treats for all of you!

Here's a latest version of my converter-and-more tool (x86, commandline, win XP/7/10, ~100k, CRC64:F9BC23C40843CE07) that allows you to turn binaries into wavs which you can load back into your keyboard.

There will be some schematics on how to mod PC-100 (likely the same for PCS-30 and similar keyboards) for card digitizing and more.
Also, at some point I'll write down here some technical info on how song binary is encoded into magnetic strip and such stuff.

I don't yet have TYU-30 keyboard and/or cartridges (if you have one to spare - let me know) but I stronly suspect it might use very similar, if not even the same format/technology as this magnetic card one. This would make the cartridge to be 4kbytes in size, that is rather believable.

Besides TYU-30, there were some home organs (at least something named -700 if I remember correctly) that used some mini-cartridge system bundled with music sheets, that organ could play back... but not much info around about it, nor service manual for it.

For now, you can look around the web on how to load the cards back into your keyboard and how to digitize them.
Loading the cards is possible even without opening the keyboard - all you need is just an amplifier and electromagnetic transducer placed over the playcard reader slot.

That's it for now!

And, by the way, before you send me an email with price/availability request, let me repeat: I do not sell these PlayCards.