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All Posts (RetroDan)




#1
Re: VirtualSolution v1.1 - the Ultimate, EASY solution to the Display Problem
Posted on: 9/6 21:00
Nintendoid!
Joined 2016/7/21
158 Posts
Long Time User (3 Years)
On the motherboard side, the VB uses a standard pitch cable connector. It's the LED board that uses a non standard pitch. In addition, the six outermost "pins" on the LED board side are NC, for reasons that nobody has been able to provide a good explanation for. Only 30 pins actually have any purpose on the cable at all.
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#2
Re: Simplest way to fix VB display without soldering?
Posted on: 9/5 21:27
Nintendoid!
Joined 2016/7/21
158 Posts
Long Time User (3 Years)
Travel back to 1996 and buy one brand new. There is no current method of fixing the displays without soldering. Baking comes closest but is iffy. There is a 3D printed bracket that you can install to apply pressure to the pads, but it's not a guaranteed fix.
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#3
Re: VirtualSolution v1.1 - the Ultimate, EASY solution to the Display Problem
Posted on: 9/3 2:46
Nintendoid!
Joined 2016/7/21
158 Posts
Long Time User (3 Years)
Quote:

VB Boy wrote:
I'm interested in these since one of my eyes is giving me trouble here and there and I haven't worked up the nerve to dive into solder fixing mine yet.

My main question is with this part how would one remove the glued portion of the old ribbon to give a clean surface to solder this part to.

Also I was reading and I was curious would this require more or less the same soldering skills that are required to do a normal solder fix. Or would the castellated holes make this job a piece of cake for people with amateur soldering skills.

Looking forward to see your progress on this part. I am very interested!

-Cameron


Since the original cable is not soldered down, a bit of heat, like from a soldering iron, will tear right through that glue. I suppose you could also use IPA, which would take a bit longer but be less aggressive.

The castellated holes here, because they are on a PCB and have plenty of mass, would allow for a solid bond to form very easily. Flux is, of course, your friend, but it will be much simpler than either the original fix method or the VirtualCable. An amateur could manage it, but it wouldn't hurt to have a modicum of experience before trying.
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#4
Re: VirtualSolution v1.1 - the Ultimate, EASY solution to the Display Problem
Posted on: 8/21 4:24
Nintendoid!
Joined 2016/7/21
158 Posts
Long Time User (3 Years)
Quote:

Edge Connector wrote:
I'd be interested in four of these cables. I'm sorry I missed your messages about the previous solution my preferences weren't set right to forward PMs to my email.

Let me know how I can order and I'll send you payment right away this time!


I'm in the process of testing this method, as I'd rather not get embarrassed like I did with the VirtualCable. It may be a bit before I determine that these are good for sale.
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#5
Re: VirtualSolution v1.1 - the Ultimate, EASY solution to the Display Problem
Posted on: 8/13 3:44
Nintendoid!
Joined 2016/7/21
158 Posts
Long Time User (3 Years)
Quote:

Alterac wrote:
Looks like a great solution.

Which PCB Fab was able to make castellated holes that close together?

My usual fabs (JLPCB, PCBWay, Osh, etc) dont let me have less than 0.6mm.


OSHpark made the prototype boards, and they did require a bit of cleanup. My production fab house for this is actually PCBWay, and they do require some tweaking, but it is doable.
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#6
Re: VirtualPerfection v1.1 - the Ultimate, EASY solution to the Display Problem
Posted on: 7/25 4:04
Nintendoid!
Joined 2016/7/21
158 Posts
Long Time User (3 Years)
Quote:

Nes Freak wrote:
i was right! :P btw this look like it will be about the same difficulty as just soldering an existing cable. put be down for a few pairs :P


In fact, it should be even easier, as the PCB board won't detach and fry itself under the heat of your soldering iron.
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#7
VirtualSolution v1.1 - the Ultimate, EASY solution to the Display Problem
Posted on: 7/25 3:10
Nintendoid!
Joined 2016/7/21
158 Posts
Long Time User (3 Years)
So, my VirtualCable v1.7 was...okay. Some issues cropped up that I hadn't anticipated, but I devised an alternate installation method that was far superior, if not exactly the intended use case, and I think that the project was ultimately a success.

But I hate imperfect solutions. Boy, do I HATE imperfect solutions! The VirtualCable was designed with the idea of being a high-quality, easy-to-install, end-all-be-all solution for the infamous VirtualBoy display failures. What it wound up being was optimistically engineered and, while it works great, installation was a lot harder than it had to be.

That was an embarrassment to me, personally, and it's been eating at me for a bit. So while I did wind up creating an iteration of the VirtualCable that is meant to solve all those issues (the prototypes for which I am still awaiting!), I decided to go back to the drawing board and scrap the entire theory I was employing, which was a glorified re-design of the original 'fix'. I wanted something a bit more elegant, and I definitely wanted future-proofing - part of the issue with Nintendo's implementation was that they didn't have a concept of Minimal Replacement - ie, you design around the most wear-prone aspect of your product with the goal of being able to easily replace it at minimal cost.

So, in lieu of the VirtualCable v2.0, I give you the VirtualSolution v1.1!

As shown in the images below, this is a two-part solution: A simple breakout board, easily installed via castellated holes (yes, we're back to those now, but on actual PCBs, it's much easier!) that branches out to a common 0.8mm LIF cable connector, which then uses an industry-standard flex cable to connect the motherboard!

This means that, should the cable fail somehow? Yank it out, plug in a replacement, and never deal with soldering again after the initial job, which is very simple for even an amateur to accomplish!

The best part of this is that it's NO MORE EXPENSIVE than the VirtualCable, and at much smaller quantities, too! That means that this solution is not only easier to install, and designed against failure of the flex cable, but it's also easier for me to acquire a stock on-hand.

Attach file:



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Edited by RetroDan on 2019/7/25 18:24
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#8
Re: Display ribbon cable alternatives
Posted on: 7/9 4:42
Nintendoid!
Joined 2016/7/21
158 Posts
Long Time User (3 Years)
Just received the prototypes for my 'unconventional solution'. No spoilers, but initial testing looks good. Some minor issues were observed, and some alterations were made accordingly. Revised prototype for this alternate avenue is out to the fab house again; I hope to introduce more mechanical stability. This 'unconventional' solution is looking so promising that I may actually scrap the 2.0 VirtualCable if I can make the numbers work. Stay tuned!
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#9
Re: Retrode 2 Rom Dumper
Posted on: 7/8 16:10
Nintendoid!
Joined 2016/7/21
158 Posts
Long Time User (3 Years)
You'll need to update the Retrode firmware to the latest version to read some games. Hyper Fighting and Red Alarm are two well known problem carts. I think the latest firmware is 0.26b or something. It's been awhile since I dragged my Retrode out, so I may be wrong there.
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#10
Re: Display ribbon cable alternatives
Posted on: 7/7 21:47
Nintendoid!
Joined 2016/7/21
158 Posts
Long Time User (3 Years)
Quote:

Nes Freak wrote:
so you went wit hthe face down method :P nice looking foward to trying these out :P will the solder be pre on the pads? if so make sure its leaded and tin 60 40 sodler not lead free sodler. lead free solder can grow tin wiskers


The fab house I use does not offer pre-tinning options on flex cables, and the next cheapest fab house that does requires a $2000 setup and tooling fee. That sort of cost for something that only saves the user 20 seconds isn't a good tradeoff for me.

I've sent this design out for prototyping. The fab house I use for prototypes takes a lot longer to produce small runs, so I don't know when I'll get it.
Edited by RetroDan on 2019/7/8 2:06
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