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sethbramwell

Atari Vader picture issue... Help requested

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I picked up a Vader 4 switch 2600 listed as for parts on eBay (actually won the auction without expecting to) as a project for the quarantine time. It came in really filthy condition with a bit of rust on the main board and rf modulator. I got nothing from it at first, but after messing with it a bit I got a very snowy and unstable picture. It's definitely reading the cart as I can see the outlines of the ms pac man maze and I can start a game and hear the sound.

 

The RCA plug was cut off at the end of the cord, so I had to do a quick bit of Jerry rigging to get that much. I'm guessing it needs a recap but I'm not sure due to the condition of the cable.  I had hoped to try it with a different RCA cable, but I didn't know that the hole on the board's jack was  as shallow as it is. Any suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks and stay healthy!

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Posted (edited)

Disassemble it and clean everything well.  How to the controller ports look? If you are able to clean them up and there is no significant corrosion then you need test them.  It would be better if we could see a picture. If the remaining piece of RF cable is mostly good, you could put an F-Connector on it and use just about any RF cable. If it were me though I would at least do a simple composite video mod, but you'll get better results if you put in something like a UAV.

Edited by mutterminder

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36 minutes ago, mutterminder said:

Disassemble it and clean everything well.  How to the controller ports look? If you are able to clean them up and there is no significant corrosion then you need test them.  It would be better if we could see a picture. If the remaining piece of RF cable is mostly good, you could put an F-Connector on it and use just about any RF cable. If it were me though I would at least do a simple composite video mod, but you'll get better results if you put in something like a UAV.

I have disassembled it and am in the process of cleaning everything.  I am also recapping and replacing components as I had an extra recap kit for a four switcher sitting around.   I at least now have a stable picture, just with a lot of snow.  I'm hoping the recapping will help it.  I did find the power jack had issues so I replaced it as well, and that helped. 

 

I received an original Atari joystick with it that is filthy and beaten up. to my surprise, as filthy as it and the controller ports were, it worked with no cleaning.  I am able to control the game with it.  

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On 4/9/2020 at 2:34 AM, sethbramwell said:

I picked up a Vader 4 switch 2600 listed as for parts on eBay (actually won the auction without expecting to) as a project for the quarantine time. It came in really filthy condition with a bit of rust on the main board and rf modulator. I got nothing from it at first, but after messing with it a bit I got a very snowy and unstable picture. It's definitely reading the cart as I can see the outlines of the ms pac man maze and I can start a game and hear the sound.

 

The RCA plug was cut off at the end of the cord, so I had to do a quick bit of Jerry rigging to get that much. I'm guessing it needs a recap but I'm not sure due to the condition of the cable.  I had hoped to try it with a different RCA cable, but I didn't know that the hole on the board's jack was  as shallow as it is. Any suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks and stay healthy!

Well the jury-rigging usually ends up being the problem more often than not, I'd be glad to direct you to a suitable Atari branded RF cable you can get as a drop-in replacement.  Then if you are using a TV with an Autoprogram capability it should pick up the signal of the powered up 2600 with a game in

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46 minutes ago, RichG1972 said:

Well the jury-rigging usually ends up being the problem more often than not, I'd be glad to direct you to a suitable Atari branded RF cable you can get as a drop-in replacement.  Then if you are using a TV with an Autoprogram capability it should pick up the signal of the powered up 2600 with a game in

Thanks, but I was able to get hold of one. It helps, but there's still snow in the picture. I'm working on recapping it. 

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1 minute ago, sethbramwell said:

Thanks, but I was able to get hold of one. It helps, but there's still snow in the picture. I'm working on recapping it. 

Are you using a TV that has an autoprogram function?  Because often if you do that with a game in and the unit powered up with a game insertrd, it gets a positive lock on the system, re-capping should often times be last resort until all other avenues have been exhausted, I can't count how many systems I've had that a simple autoprogramming run has resolved.  I even have 2 complete restoration threads on here from several years ago that turned out perfect

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1 hour ago, RichG1972 said:

Are you using a TV that has an autoprogram function?  Because often if you do that with a game in and the unit powered up with a game insertrd, it gets a positive lock on the system, re-capping should often times be last resort until all other avenues have been exhausted, I can't count how many systems I've had that a simple autoprogramming run has resolved.  I even have 2 complete restoration threads on here from several years ago that turned out perfect

Yes, I am. It locked in to the atari successfully but there is still significant snow on the screen. 

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11 minutes ago, sethbramwell said:

Yes, I am. It locked in to the atari successfully but there is still significant snow on the screen. 

Ah

 

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44 minutes ago, sethbramwell said:

Yes, I am. It locked in to the atari successfully but there is still significant snow on the screen. 

What channel do you have the Atari set to on the rear of it? 2 or 3?  What throws things off on more modern game systems that came after it such as the NES, the channel setting became 3 or 4 instead of 2 or 3

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12 minutes ago, RichG1972 said:

What channel do you have the Atari set to on the rear of it? 2 or 3?  What throws things off on more modern game systems that came after it such as the NES, the channel setting became 3 or 4 instead of 2 or 3

I've tried both. 3 gives better results. 

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3 minutes ago, sethbramwell said:

I've tried both. 3 gives better results. 

I find that to be the case as well, with mine I use older TV's the kind with the VHF/UHF dials, since they have a tuning ring you can almost always bring in a clear picture, then again I use older TV's to make me feel like I am stepping back in time to a simpler era

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I like to try to tune it into an older TV as well. Unfortunately the only older TV I have is a small portable one with a 3.5 mm Jack for an external antenna. I can sometimes dial into it with an older console but it is very hit-or-miss.

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