Roughly a year ago I was lucky enough to be able to acquire an E-mu Proteus/1XR with the Protologic expansion made by InVision Interactive, as reviewed in a prior post. True to my word, as of yesterday, I finally was able to successfully extract and read the sound chips from it, as well as the standard Proteus 1 and 2 sound ROM's.
This process was more gruelling than one might expect: while the sound ROM's were all thru-hole DIP's a la EPROM's and thus easier to extract than the more widespread SMD's (which also was also changed to for the Proteus MPS and the Proteus 3), the brutal truth is that I never desoldered before, so I admit I spent a few months trying to manage the courage to start despite paranoia about damaging anything.
And then it happened: toward the end of that procrastination period, someone was generous enough to list a Proteus 1 motherboard for sale on Reverb. I was absolutely certain I'd damage the board and possibly the components with the skillset I had, so I figured I'd purchase that as well for the sake of practice.
Lots of slight burns on the board and some chips with clipped pins later, I finally felt confident enough to try on the reason I took on the project in the first place: the Protologic expansion. Perversely, despite later extracting from the Proteus 2 as well, this was my most successful attempt at desoldering: all pins were intact, and I failed to notice major damage to the board for the most part, though thankfully, resoldering them back in proved unnecessary due to someone else also selling another Protologic board separate from their unit. Might consider that anyway just to learn how to do it, though...
Anyway, most of the remaining time on the project was spent trying to salvage the Proteus 1 and 2 chips that were damaged during extraction, a process that only concluded last night.
Alas, out of respect for copyright of E-mu Systems, Creative, and Digital Sound Factory, I have no plans to host the dumps for the standard Proteus 1 and 2 sounds here: those sounds can still be aquired legally through the last entity, anyway. The consolation, however: InVision Interactive went out of business long before even E-mu did, so I think it's safe to assume that those rare sounds are true abandonware at this point.
Thanks everyone for bearing with the ramble, and before I wrap up: know that I do have another probable game music project in the works, though I can't publicize the details about it at this time.