Monday, May 26, 2014

Classic handheld gaming

My neighbor had an old original Gameboy sitting around and gave it to my son.  It had corroded old batteries in it.  Even after removing them and plugging in the power supply, it just continually rebooted.

Playing Super Mario after repairing the machine.

We cracked it open and discovered that a chip near the cartridge connector had corrosion completely covering the pins on one side, and a little corrosion on the other.  The photo below is after a certain degree of circuit cleaner spray, toothbrush and toothpick work.

The eventual solution was to put it under the USB microscope at highest magnification and clean with an X-Acto hobby knife.  This revealed that one of the pins had come completely loose from the circuit board due to the corrosion.  Flux was applied with a flux pen, and the contacts re-soldered.  We now have a working Gameboy, with Super Mario and Tetris carts!

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