We're all about reverse-engineering popular chips from the 70's and 80's - initially the 6502 but others too. This wiki is for documenting our findings and recording our sources, and is of course a work in progress.
Projects and status
For each chip, we follow these steps (see the PDFs for details):
- get a chip, or more than one, which we can depackage
- depackage it
- take many photographs through a microscope of the metal layer
- stitch into a single large image, correcting for distortions and overlaps
- capture the polygons - at least for metal, usually also for contact cuts - into a data file
- usually, deprocess the chip to expose the lower silicon layers
- photograph, stitch and capture
- convert the data files into a description we can simulate
- investigate the behaviour of the chip by simulation
- investigate the layout and logic design
- write up our results on this wiki
MOS 6502 family
See the additional information further down this page
We have photographs of the metal layer, and have started capturing the polygons. No public information yet.
Atari support chips
- TIA (television interface adaptor) fully extracted and simulated, no data yet published.
- ANTIC layout is in the process of polygon capture or netlist extraction. Primary data not yet published, but see these threads.
We have photographs of the metal layer, and have started capturing the polygons.
- 68000 project page containing die photo and showing areas being captured
This chip will need further deprocessing and photography for the lower layers.
Ferranti ULA family
Ferranti ULAs were used in Acorn's BBC and Electron computers, and Sinclair's ZX81 and Spectrum.
See Chris Smith's excellent book for ULA background and lots of detail about the Spectrum ULA
- Spectrum ULA: photographed, circuit manually captured, original sources not presently public
- Electron ULA: photographed and stitched, nothing online yet
- Tube ULA: we have a 'spare' chip, yet to be decapsulated
6502 additional information
- Beregnyei Balazs: 6502 Reverse Engineering (translation)
- Mark Ormston: 65xx Processor Data (version 0.2b)
- Ivo van Poorten: 6502 Bugs List
- Neil Parker: The 6502/65C02/65C816 Instruction Set Decoded
- Graham: 6502/6510/8500/8502 Opcode matrix
- Freddy Offenga: 6502 Undocumented Opcodes
- Adam Vardy: Extra Instructions Of The 65XX Series CPU