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eightbit

First recap job on a Game Gear (or anything for that matter)

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I recently purchased a dead Game Gear on ebay just to see if I could do this. The Game Gear came with case, PSU, eight games, manuals, Ni-Cad charger (which is dead of course) and was $20 shipped for the whole thing. I ordered a cap kit for $6 and it arrived today. I watched some videos and I am no stranger to simple solder jobs, but this one was a little more advanced than what I am used to. My kid helped me along (with reading values especially, my eyes can't see this stuff even with a magnifying glass at times!) and she held caps in place while I soldered them in. The surface mount caps were all leaking...as a matter of fact all of the caps were leaking and the smell of nasty fish permeated the house for a bit.

 

We stopped at the mainboard and the power board, and holy smokes it works! No sound (yet) but I will get to the audio board tomorrow. I think we did OK for a first time job. To be honest though I don't know how people could do these all day...I still think it is a PITA!

 

 

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5 hours ago, eightbit said:

think we did OK for a first time job. To be honest though I don't know how people could do these all day...I still think it is a PITA!

Yup, I got half a dozen game gears sitting around waiting for new caps.

And for me to not be busy / lazy. 🙄

 

This also reminds me, are your recapped macs still getting used?🕹️

 

 

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4 hours ago, H454 said:

Yup, I got half a dozen game gears sitting around waiting for new caps.

And for me to not be busy / lazy. 🙄

 

This also reminds me, are your recapped macs still getting used?🕹️

Yes indeed! You perform some amazing solder work my friend!

 

Edited by eightbit
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This inspired me to recap my game gear today. I've been sitting on a cap kit for it for at least 9 months. I did the main board and power board. The replacement caps for the audio board are SMD. And I don't trust myself to install those without wrecking them. 

 

I lost one of the case screws in the process and the sound caps are bad (super low volume on both speaker and headphones). But other wise a successful recap. 😂

 

There is a guy local who does repair work, so I'll have to have him do the audio board. And I'll have to scour the area around my workbench for the missing screw.

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I did the audio board today...by far the worst. Everything else was relatively easy. Those SMD caps were all leaking to hell. When I got done the sound was still very very low. But then I tested the headphone jack and the sound was REALLY loud, but only coming out of the left. Messing with the jack plug sometimes gets the sound on the right, or on both (if you are lucky) and sometimes messing with it will increase the volume of the internal speaker. So, on top of the cap replacement (which I am pretty sure was a success on that board) it has a bad headphone jack. The audio routes through that jack to tell the system to output sound to the speaker if the headphones are unplugged. Desoldered the whole headphone jack and no sound at all (for now as I ordered a new jack from console5). Hope that does the trick or I am looking at a replacement sound board.

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A while back...  like a long while back... I sent a GameGear to a buddy of mine for him to recap.  He’s good at such things. Anyway, it’s been a long time, but I’m not complaining since he’s doing it for free. But I did ask him about it recently...  lol

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Once again inspired by this thread, I got brave and did the audio board. Getting the smd caps off with an iron is no problem. But putting them in is another story. Took a few tries on each cap, but eventually got them soldered in.  They sure don't make soldering smd caps in with an iron easy.

 

And yeah, the audio caps on mine were leaking far worse than the main board. Luckily it didn't damage the PCB at all, and I now have a fully functioning Game Gear again.

 

Thanks for motivating me to recap mine!

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I really need to give this a try. I have 3 broken Game Gears that I've acquired over the years in various states of disrepair. I'm not the greatest with a soldering iron, but my guitar fixing hobby has helped with that in recent years.

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Since this one I have already done two more. It is not hard at all and actually very relaxing. You just have to take your time...no rushing. It helps to have a clean good solder iron (I am actually using a cheap $10 model from Amazon with a temp dial...works fine for this), some braid, some flux, and some decent solder. Going slowly is the key. And sometimes stuff just cannot be fixed with cap replacement....like the sound board in this one. THe caps leaked so bad I think it caused damage to the components on that board, so I had to obtain and recap another sound board which worked.

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