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Intellivision issues

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Hi everyone I had a question on troubleshooting my Intellivision.

 

I recently picked up an intellivision from a swapmeet and the picture doesnt display when the system is powered on.

After messing around with it I figured out by pulling down on the RF cord I can make the picture appear.

As soon as i release pressure on the cord the picture goes blank.

 

Does anyone with any experience on the subject think this is an easy fix or is my Intellivision toast?

It seems like the port might be loose and have no experience tinkering with electronics.

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Welcome to AtariAge!

 

At least you've confirmed that the Intellivision itself is operational, which is a good sign. If you haven't already done so, I would try replacing the RF cord first, which would be the easiest possible fix. The other likely problem is a worn or dirty RF modulator. If the RCA plug on the back of the Intellivision is loose or blackened from age and use, it could lead to a poor connection.

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Thanks jay!

 

Well i did try cleaning the inside of the port with a Q-tip with some rubbing alcohol on it and that didn't seem to do anything.

The port does look quite dirty and aged...

I'll pick up a new cable tomorrow and see how it goes.

If that doesn't solve the problem are the modulators replacable?

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They are replaceable, but it takes some work because you'd have to open the Intellivision (no easy task in itself), desolder the old modulator, and replace it with a new one. I've only ever swapped them out with modulators from other (dead) Intellivisions, but if you don't have one of those handy, that doesn't help very much.

 

If the replacement cable doesn't do the job, and if you've already cleaned the inner and outer surfaces of the old plug as best you can, you might try plugging the cable into it and then turning it around a few times inside the plug, clockwise and counterclockwise. That might be enough for the connector to "bite" through the tarnished outer surface and make a better connection.

 

Speaking of Intellivision RF modulators ... I found an eBay seller who is offering two lots of 100 new modulators, for $99 per lot plus shipping. The part number on these matches the one given in the original Intellivision Service Manual, the ASTEC UM1285-8. Here's the link, in case anyone here is interested in buying one of these lots and then reselling them piecemeal to those who need replacements:

 

eBay Auction -- Item Number: 1804856209501?ff3=2&pub=5574883395&toolid=10001&camp

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They are replaceable, but it takes some work because you'd have to open the Intellivision (no easy task in itself), desolder the old modulator, and replace it with a new one. I've only ever swapped them out with modulators from other (dead) Intellivisions, but if you don't have one of those handy, that doesn't help very much.

 

If the replacement cable doesn't do the job, and if you've already cleaned the inner and outer surfaces of the old plug as best you can, you might try plugging the cable into it and then turning it around a few times inside the plug, clockwise and counterclockwise. That might be enough for the connector to "bite" through the tarnished outer surface and make a better connection.

 

Speaking of Intellivision RF modulators ... I found an eBay seller who is offering two lots of 100 new modulators, for $99 per lot plus shipping. The part number on these matches the one given in the original Intellivision Service Manual, the ASTEC UM1285-B. Here's the link, in case anyone here is interested in buying one of these lots and then reselling them piecemeal to those who need replacements:

 

eBay Auction -- Item Number: 1804856209501?ff3=2&pub=5574883395&toolid=10001&campid=5336500554&customid=&item=180485620950&mpt=[CACHEBUSTER]

 

Hmmm... might be worth getting into that business. Otherwise, Alltronics has them one at a time for $3 ea. it appears: http://www.alltronic...cgi?item=92V017

 

Maybe Left Turn Only will buy a lot and resell them at $2.50 + shipping. ;-)

 

Hi everyone I had a question on troubleshooting my Intellivision.

 

I recently picked up an intellivision from a swapmeet and the picture doesnt display when the system is powered on.

After messing around with it I figured out by pulling down on the RF cord I can make the picture appear.

As soon as i release pressure on the cord the picture goes blank.

 

Does anyone with any experience on the subject think this is an easy fix or is my Intellivision toast?

It seems like the port might be loose and have no experience tinkering with electronics.

 

In my experience, it seems the tongue inside the connector gets bent back over time and fails to make a connection. That's why when you push on the cable it's fine, but when you let go, it stops working. Every unit I've had that had problems has a similar symptom. I haven't figured out a good way to get in there and bend the tongue back. The RF modulator otherwise is fine -- just the mechanical connection itself sucks.

Edited by intvnut

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Maybe Left Turn Only will buy a lot and resell them at $2.50 + shipping. ;-)

 

 

Heck, why not. It's only $126 shipped, approx.

 

EDIT: That translates to, I just bought one of the two remaining lots, so if you'd like to buy one from me, let me know. $2.50 + shipping. :-)

Edited by intvnut
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EDIT: That translates to, I just bought one of the two remaining lots, so if you'd like to buy one from me, let me know. $2.50 + shipping. :-)

Hey, great! I'll probably buy a few of them from you myself, once you receive them. I believe they're also the RF modulators used in the Aquarius.

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EDIT: That translates to, I just bought one of the two remaining lots, so if you'd like to buy one from me, let me know. $2.50 + shipping. :-)

I believe they're also the RF modulators used in the Aquarius.

 

You're probably right. If you can confirm, that'd be great. I'll post to AA once I get them.

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You're probably right. If you can confirm, that'd be great. I'll post to AA once I get them.

Yes, I just opened the Aquarius on my desk, and it is indeed the same one: the UM1285-8 (the "UM1285-B" number that I posted earlier was a typo).

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Yes, I just opened the Aquarius on my desk, and it is indeed the same one: the UM1285-8 (the "UM1285-B" number that I posted earlier was a typo).

 

Yeah, I figured the eBay headline was a typo. Given that it was Alltronics selling the lots and their product page had the right part number, I figure they must just be interested in rotating out that stock. That was part of my impetus for buying the lot, actually. It looks like they'll no longer be a source I can point folks toward before too much longer.

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Maybe Left Turn Only will buy a lot and resell them at $2.50 + shipping. ;-)

 

 

Heck, why not. It's only $126 shipped, approx.

 

EDIT: That translates to, I just bought one of the two remaining lots, so if you'd like to buy one from me, let me know. $2.50 + shipping. :-)

 

I might pick one up from you.

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EDIT: That translates to, I just bought one of the two remaining lots, so if you'd like to buy one from me, let me know. $2.50 + shipping. :-)

 

I might pick one up from you.

 

BTW, in case you didn't see the other thread, I have these available now. Just PM me.

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not to bump this topic, but if you have this problem, here's a 5 dollar solution to try before replacing rf modulators.

 

1)check to see if wiggling the rf to switchbox cables give and occasionally clear picture when the cable is forced upwards. if it is...

2) Do not use the switchbox or cable that came with the intv.

3) buy a perpendicular ( right angle, 90 degree) audio or video cable. all you need is one.

4) buy and rca female to antenna connector male,

5) go to a thrift store and pick up a cheap vcr. it does not need to be stereo, nor does the tape mechanism have to work. all you need working is the tuner circuitry.

5) insert perpendicular end with the sticking out edge facing upward relative to gravity being downward.

6) insert other end, perpendicular or otherwise in the antenna adapter and plug the antenna end into TV IN port.

7) run RCA composite cables to tv with composite inpurs or something with composite-> HDMI converter.

8) tune vcr to channel 2,3, or 4, whatever channel your classic game system outputs at.

9) tune tv to composite input.

10) enjoy your game. to record for high score websites, get hard drive recorder or dvdr, but as early as possible, after the vcr, branch off with rca y adapters, with one end going straight to tv (for minimal ping), and the other to the recorder.

 

the middle steps of using the perpendicular rca cable eases the pressure on the rf cable, and because rca cables are the same whether they carry composite (a/v) or integrated (one wire whole tv) signals, you can use them interchangably as long as you buy the converter to get it into an antenna port, which only understands integrated tv, and since no one is broadcasting on analog tv, this is the PERFECT use of a vcr antenna in. the tape mechanism doesn't have to work unless your playing tapes, or recording them, in which case, use a dvdr or hard drive recorder for easier digital transfer.

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