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DamonicFury

Repairing the 4-port's switchbox

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So somehow I ended up with three 4-port switchboxes that don't work. (I have another one that does work, so the problem isn't the 5200 or the power supply.) I tried replacing the LM393N chip on each one but that didn't do the trick. What's next to try, the 2N3906 transistor?

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Just wasnt interested in the power mod - my personal preference is always to keep my consoles unmodified. Turns out the transistor did indeed need to be replaced in all three switchboxes. Perhaps the LM393N needed replaced in some or all of them as well, guess Ill never know. Probably best to do them both if unsure... at least for me, that did the trick!

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It appears that my (one) 4-port switchbox is dead; how do you take it apart? Mine has a pad of Velcro in the center of the back. Is there a screw beneath that? Or do you need to use a screwdriver or something to work apart some internal tabs?

Edited by DrVenkman

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It appears that my (one) 4-port switchbox is dead; how do you take it apart? Mine has a pad of Velcro in the center of the back. Is there a screw beneath that? Or do you need to use a screwdriver or something to work apart some internal tabs?

 

Yeap there is a screw under on the back center of it. Then it just comes apart. The transistor is the most likely suspect as there honestly isn't that much else in there to go bad.

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Just wasnt interested in the power mod - my personal preference is always to keep my consoles unmodified. Turns out the transistor did indeed need to be replaced in all three switchboxes. Perhaps the LM393N needed replaced in some or all of them as well, guess Ill never know. Probably best to do them both if unsure... at least for me, that did the trick!

 

It just isn't the same experience if you don't have ol' Sparky shooting out sparks and scaring away the girlie men from ever using the almighty 5200...

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Okay, well false alarm in my case - I got the thing apart, and you're right - not much in there. The transistor tested okay (at least not open, and not shorted), and no obvious internal damage. As it happens, I have an old dead external HD around here and the PSU was (shockingly!) right where I could find it. It's a 12VDC 1.5A, center-positive barrel jack connector, just the right size for the 5200 switchbox. So I connected it to my good 5200 and shazam! Back in business!

 

I still have to figure out what's up with the one that was glitching and trying to die last week but for now I am at least in business again.

Edited by DrVenkman

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Mine had an issue in the last year with powering off. It would allow other signals through it when not in use as it should, until you turned it on. Power on functioned as normal and system would turn off, but switch box wouldn't. You'd have to unplug the power to disengage the box. Changing the transistor fixed it just fine. :)

Edited by zylon

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It just isn't the same experience if you don't have ol' Sparky shooting out sparks and scaring away the girlie men from ever using the almighty 5200...

 

This girl laughs at such "would be" men. (insert hair flip here) :P

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I still have to figure out what's up with the one that was glitching and trying to die last week but for now I am at least in business again.

 

PSU has screws on the bottom. My memory is there is one under a rubber pad. The 5200 PSU has a fuse inside it. If caps are blown, Console 5 has them: https://console5.com/store/kits/ps-caps.html?console_type_revision=85

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PSU has screws on the bottom. My memory is there is one under a rubber pad. The 5200 PSU has a fuse inside it. If caps are blown, Console 5 has them: https://console5.com/store/kits/ps-caps.html?console_type_revision=85

There are two versions of the 5200 PSU (typically goofy-ass Warner-era Atari - just throw money at anything!). One puts out 11.5VDC (that one has screws) the other outputs 9.2VDC or something weird. That one doesn’t have screws. Well, mine doesn’t. Anyway, I’ve got both versions and neither of them are completely dead - they put out some tiny voltage that rises a bit over time. Damaged internal coils or leaking caps, probably. If the fuses had gone, they wouldn’t put out any voltage at all.

 

Screw it. Modern 12VDC 2A PSU’s with the correct jack size and polarity are $10 on Amazon and work great with the switch box. They’ll be equally fine after I do the power mod and cut the ridiculous box out of the picture entirely. :)

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