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Looking for a good bios chip programmer

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(@Guest)
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Need some advice on what bios chip programmer to buy, I got a CH341A to try and flash a chip for a macbook a1708 but had no joy at all with the software just constantly throwing up errors. So I've convinced myself I need a good quality one as I am getting more and more laptops and macbooks that I need to replace bios chips on.
Anyone with any experience in this giving me some advice on what hardware to get would be much appreciated


   
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(@Guest 2458)
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I have tested 3 programmers

TL866II Plus
EZP2019 High Speed
CH341A V1.7

Over all the software that comes with the TL866II is the best IMO They do have a new version out but its like $200+. The EZP2019 works good. The down fall of these 2 programmers is you have to sandwich boards for the correct volts for that chip your programing. The CH341A "V1.7" is had a voltage adjustment switch and it works. Bad thing is the software is blah. Over I would suggest the TL866II over all of them.

Quick question. Are you flashing in circuit?


   
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(@Guest)
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Thanks for the reply,
I'm currently inundated with macbook repair, I've refused to touch them for years due to a real dislike for apple but had to take the step due to high demand, this first one I'm having problems with is a A1708 macbook pro, I have removed the bios chip but just get sporadic readings and errors when trying to erase or programme the chip using CH341A that I purchased, it seems to read the chip fine then just give me errors, I tried like 3 other versions of software that claim to work with this programmer 1 of them even verified the flash and said all is good but I just get a touch pad click and a blank screen on putting the chip back, I know the bios file is good so am convinced it's the programmer / software at fault


   
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NorthridgeFix
(@alex)
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Chip programmers will be in stock later this week. I'll update the post when when item is available for purchase.


   
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(@Guest 2458)
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Did you look up the data sheet of that chip to see what voltage the chip is? I have seen issues with under volt programmers causing issues.


   
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(@Guest 9205)
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I can really recommend the CH341A, because it comes at a really low price and a broad support for almost all moder SPI. I do not know about the 1.7 Version also including a voltage switch, but there are many guides available to mod the older Versions also. I am personally using two devices where I modded one to run at 3.3 V. For 1.2 V there is a voltage shifter available. Two programmer including a voltage shifter come at around 12 US D, but I guess the newer version might be even cheaper.

 

Regarding the software issue:

There are many graphical software solutions available. Sometimes you have to search a bit to get an English software instead of Chinese or Russian, but they do exist and are also easy to use.

I personally recommend simply using 'flashrom' although it runs in terminal.

Why?

(1) Because on all UNIX systems including Mac OS X software and driver are already preinstalled. It also runs on windows and I here also recommend using the portable version, where you do not need to run a dedicated setup to install the driver. It's as simple as using the UNIX Version

(2) I started using that programmer a while a go, when I was mainly repairing DELL XPS Notebooks, which in most cases come with a 256 Mbit winbond SPI. The graphical interface was not able to detect/write the SPI correctly lying in the issue, that the CS pin of the IC needs to be pulled low, before starting to write. This issue was found to occurred within almost all commercial programmers, but was solved first in flashrom. They are somehow doing a good job in keeping the drivers up to date.

(3) Although writing with the CH341A takes some time, flashrom incorporates a nice feature, that reassures that everything was written correctly. But, I guess this also applies to most other software solutions.

 

 

 


   
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NorthridgeFix
(@alex)
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(@Guest 9222)
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I'm using TL866a for old/small size bios and RT809F for large size bios - 16/32MB. If you have more money to spend, you can check RT809H (can be used for iPh0ne NAND chip)


   
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