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amstrudy

dead atari 2600

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I have two Atari 2600s. One with a wood panel, and one without. The one with the wood panel works beautifully with my 80's CRT TV, and the black paneled one doesn't work at all with the same setup. I busted it open to take a look at the board. When plugging it in, I saw a little spark which suggested to me that power is indeed going in correctly. I took a multimeter and measured around a bit. 15 V going in. Everything seemed to stop at the on switch. No matter how much I switched on or off, the voltage went from 15 V to 0 V right across that switch. Is it unusual for an Atari switch to not work? There's also some corrosion around the board which I am going to clean off with isopropyl alcohol. Does anyone have any next steps for me to try? I would love to get this working! Some photos are attached.

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A good number of the one's I buy off ebay have just dirty switches, contact cleaner is best to spray in them but you can use isopropyl, just get it good n wet inside and actuate it a bunch of times, check with multimeter in ohms range

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Thanks for the suggestion! I cleaned out the switch really good with alcohol and progress was made! Now I get a picture. Basically I see a bunch of scrunched up lines that are colored and monotone beeps every half second. I tried a different cartridge and saw different colored lines and patterns. I will post some pictures momentarily. Any more suggestions? Thanks!

 

EDIT: links to image and video below

https://imgur.com/a/1v7ICOt

https://imgur.com/a/QGIuqmj

Edited by amstrudy

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looks like its not reading the cart data (or rather the full cart data, if you turn a 2600 on while connected to a tv that doesnt give you a blue screen with no cart you should see that anyway)

 

best case the slot needs to have a good scrubbin

 

worst case its got a bad riot chip (6532 is its non atari part number) which is 10 bucks or so on ebay (hopefully its in a socket)

 

good news is if it made it that far the TIA and cpu are probally ok, and those are harder to find, the 6532 was used in about a billion things from the era (from industrial control computers to C64 disk drives)

Edited by Osgeld

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I cleaned the slots as best as I could by pouring in some alcohol and sticking some thick paper in and out, and then repeating the process with a cartridge, but no luck. Should I go ahead and try to replace the riot chip or is there something else I can try? Thanks!!

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Everything anyone needs to diagnose and repair a 2600 is contained in the Field Service Manual. There are symptom flowcharts for everything people encounter and pretty much everything that can go wrong:

 

Field Service Manual

Edited by DrVenkman
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