The BackBit Chip Tester ups your game with vintage computer diagnosis and repair. Tired of playing a guessing game with swapping chips? Don’t want to risk putting good chips in a bad machine? Want to do as little desoldering as possible? Then the BackBit Chip Tester is your solution.
- Designed for use with the Commodore 64, but capable of being expanded to other hardware with firmware upgrades;
- Diagnoses chips in-circuit to help you decide which chips to desolder;
- Diagnoses loose chips to save you from purchasing unnecessary replacements;
- Pays for itself when it helps you rescue a machine you’ve given up on;
- Deduces problems with integrated circuits, making it much easier to identify wiring problems like corrosion and short circuits;
- Supports testing 5V logic of most chips in the “breadbin” Commodore 64 hardware out of circuit, and in-circuit with machine unplugged;
- For in-circuit testing, you must attach an IC test clip (test clips not included, but comes with one adapter for easy wiring);
- Capable of “ripping” ROM chips to Micro SD card (this functionality will be added with firmware upgrade — SD card not included);
- The same quality of technical support you have come to expect from the BackBit cartridge;
- Sturdy sandwiched PCB case with static-protected backing and 3D-printed buttons and standoffs;
- Powered by micro USB cable (comes with cable but you must supply your own USB power plug or adapter). Requires about 1A of continuous power for in-circuit testing;
- WARNING: DO NOT USE for in-circuit testing while machine is PLUGGED IN, as this can damage the tester permanently.
You can purchase additional clip adapters here.
Recommended accessories to test in-circuit (not sold by BackBit):
IC Test Clips (this is the minimum set to be able to test nearly all chips in the C64 easily — you could also get a 28×0.6″, 18×0.3″, 16×0.3″, etc…)
*make sure you do not get “nail head” clips as those don’t attach to jumper wire
*if you get a 24 or 28 pin clip, make sure to get the wide one, i.e. 0.6″ width
*these are much cheaper used or new old-stock on ebay
* use male/female extension wire; any square pin wires with 2.54mm spacing should work;
* best to get configurable-sized headers like these, as single pin jumpers tend to get jammed with so many in a row; you just use a few of these for each side of the junction, i.e. 2x 10 pins for the 20 pin clip, 4x 6 pins for 24 pin clip, 4x 10 pins for 40 pin clip, or other combinations will work:
https://www.adafruit.com/product/3146 or https://www.adafruit.com/product/3145