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Convert Amiga ROM images to BIN dumps, or vice versa


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This is a tiny collection of command line tools for generating ROM images from ROM dumps, and vice versa. It takes care for byte swapping, splitting, and merging different ROM files. It is mainly made for Amiga ROM images, but can also be used for Atari ROMs and other systems.


pynaroma is written in Python 3.

pip install pynaroma


In the following examples two kinds of files are mentioned. Both have different purposes, so do not mix them up.

*.rom files are ROM dumps that are generated by tools like GrabKick and can be directly used in Amiga emulators. Bytes are in correct order, so strings are correct if you read the dump file with a Hex editor.

*.bin files are ROM images that are suitable to be burned into EPROMs. There may be two separate ROM image files for the lower and higher ROM in 32-bit Amigas. Also bytes are swapped, so these files can be read by programmer tools like minipro.


  • rom2bin - Converts ROM dumps into one or two ROM image files, ready for burning.
  • bin2rom - Converts one or two ROM image files into one or multiple ROM dumps.
  • bin2split - Splits a ROM image into smaller chunks for multiple EPROMs.


These are some common usage examples of the tool. Both tools are meant to be used by experienced users, so they are not too smart and will generate broken output if you give a broken input.

Convert an AmigaOS 3.2 ROM dump for the Amiga 500 into a single EPROM image fit for burning:

rom2bin --to kick32.bin kickcdtva1000a500a2000a600.rom

Both the source and the target files are 512KB large.

Convert an AmigaOS 3.2 ROM dump for the Amiga 4000 into two EPROM images for burning into high and low ROMs:

rom2bin --low kick32-low.bin --high kick32-high.bin kicka4000.rom

The source file is 512KB large, and is split into two target files of 256KB each.

If 512KB EPROMs are used, the ROM image must be duplicated to fill the entire memory. The --duplicate option will duplicate each of the given ROM dumps.

rom2bin --low kick32-low.bin --high kick32-high.bin --duplicate kicka4000.rom

Now both target files are 512KB each, and will fit into the 512KB EPROM.

If an adapter board with a bigger EPROM and a switch is used, it is also possible to burn different ROM images, e.g. to switch between two different AmigaOS versions:

rom2bin --to amiga500.bin kick2-04.rom kick3-2.rom

If both .rom dumps are 512KB each, the resulting image fits into an 1MB EPROM.

If the ROM dumps have different sizes, they can be given as parameter multiple times. In the following example, kick1-3.rom is 256KB and kick2-04.rom is 512KB large. To create an 1MB ROM dump, kick1-3.rom must be duplicated, but kick2-04.rom must not. For this reason, the --duplicate option cannot be used, but the dump must be given multiple times:

rom2bin --to amiga500.bin kick1-3.rom kick1-3.rom kick2-04.rom

The resulting .bin file is 1MB large, and permits to switch between Kick 1.3 and Kick 2.04.

If you need to write the resulting .bin file to multiple EPROMs, you can use bin2split to split the bin file into smaller chunks. In the following example, kick.bin is 512KB large, and we need four 128KB fragments from it.

bin2split --size 128K kick.bin

This line will generate four files: kick-0.bin, kick-1.bin, kick-2.bin, and kick-3.bin. Each file has a size of 128KB. Note that bin2split will just overwrite existing files.

An Atari ST TOS 1.04 image file is 192KB large. In order to burn it, it needs to be separated into upper and lower 8 bit images first. After that, each image needs to be split into three 32KB chunks, giving six image files.

rom2bin --8bit --low tos-low.bin --high tos-high.bin tos104.rom
bin2split --size 32K tos-high.bin
bin2split --size 32K tos-low.bin

bin2rom works in the opposite direction. It takes ROM images (that are read from Amiga ROMs or EPROMs), and converts them to ROM dumps that can be stored or used in emulators.

This example joins an Amiga 500 ROM image into a ROM dump. It's the counterpart to the first example above.

bin2rom --from kick32.bin kickcdtva1000a500a2000a600.rom

To join the dumps of high and low ROM files, they need to be stated separately:

bin2rom --low kick32-low.bin --high kick32-high.bin amiga4000.rom

As mentioned in the example above, the kick32-low.bin and kick32-high.bin contain the Kickstart twice, to fill the entire EPROM space. For this reason, the resulting amiga4000.rom file is 1MB large and also contains the ROM content twice.

You can use the --split option to split a ROM image into a number of equally-sized dumps:

bin2rom --split 2 --low kick32-low.bin --high kick32-high.bin amiga4000.rom

The resulting files will be called amiga4000-1.rom and amiga4000-2.rom. Each file contains the first or second half of the ROM image, respectively.

--split 4 would split the image into four ROM dump files, --split 8 would split the image into eight ROM dumps. Other values (like --split 3) are not allowed because they would make no sense for obvious reasons.

8-bit Mode

Usually 16-bit ROMs are used in Amiga hardware. Some extensions (like Action Replay) use two 8-bit ROMs though. One ROM is for the lower, and the other one for the upper part of the 16-bit data bus. Also the Atari ST line uses 8-bit ROMs.

With the --8bit option, pynaroma converts a ROM dump into two ROM images for 8-bit EPROMs, and vice versa. When the 8-bit mode is enabled, the upper part of the word (bit 8-15) is in the --low file, while the lower part of the word (bit 0-7) is in the --high file. This is because pynaroma works in big-endian mode by default.

The --8bit mode requires the --low and --high options to be set. This is not a limitation, because an 8-bit ROM dump and an 8-bit ROM image is essentially the same file.


pynaroma was made for Amiga and Atari enthusiasts. Since these machines base on the Motorola 68000 architecture, the default mode is big-endian, and byte swapping takes place when reading or writing ROM images (see Endianness).

If your target system has a little-endian architecture, you can set the --little option at rom2bin and bin2rom. If this option is set, no byte swapping is done.

(Note: Up to version 0.3.0 the --8bit mode was little-endian, so the low and high files needed to be swapped on big-endian systems. Starting with version 0.4.0, big-endian is consistently used in all modes, and little-endian can be selected with the --little option.)



pynaroma is open source software. The source code is distributed under the terms of GNU General Public License (GPLv3).