Old 3DS' Screen Fading out/flickering/blinking

Discussion in '3DS - Console, Accessories and Hardware' started by kaiobj, Aug 9, 2017.

  1. kaiobj
    OP

    kaiobj Member

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    Well, this started a few days ago. I was playing a GBA VC game and suddenly the top screen started flickering and, eventually, fading out, showing me nothing but a black screen.
    Tried a couple of stuff I saw here and there - letting the battery run dry and charging the console - but with no success.
    I was at firmware version 11.4, thought this could be some software bug and updated the 3DS: no success
    Formatted the 3ds: no success.

    Why am I thinking this could be a software problem? Because if I try to run FBI the top screen starts working again, showing the FBI logo. If I hit the home menu: it starts to flicker and fading away. And if I boot to Luma menu the top screen works, showing all the available information.

    TL;DR:
    3DS screen started flickering and blinking from nowhere; no damage to the 3DS hardware
    3DS Version 11.5
    Luma 3DS 8.1
    Boot9 installed
    I don't think this is a hardware problem, but I'm already looking for new flat cables.

    Any idea or suggestion will be very appreciated. Thank you guys.
     
  2. Trumpasaurus

    Trumpasaurus GBAtemp Regular

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    Is the flickering occurring when the console is plugged in? Or is it just from running off battery? You might need to replace the battery.

    You mentioned you let the battery die then charged it again? Also, you formatted the 3DS? Did you complete the following exactly?

    Backup all your Important Data (just in case)
    Disable Auto-Brightness and Energy-Save Option.
    Play until your Battery is low and your 3DS isnt Starting anymore.
    Take out the SD Card with Emunand
    Take out the Battery for 5 Hrs+ (Better over Night)
    Put the Battery back in and overcharge it

    Fire up your 3DS (without an Inserted so card) and Format on Sysnand (be aware) this unlinks the Emunand from Sysnand !
    And now try if the flickering is gone.

    Overcharge in Detail:
    Play your Battery down until the device isnt Starting anymore
    Charge the Battery back until it is fully loaded (the light goes out but LEAVE THE POWER CABLE INSIDE THE DEVICE, SO IT GETS CHARGED EVEN YOU DONT SEE IT - Better over Night)

    After 2+hrs in this State (or After you Wake up), unplug the Power cable and Plug it back in.
    And leave the device in this State for 2hrs+. That is an overcharge.


    Many posts are mentioning that taking the battery out for extended periods of time helps. That is - if you don't want to try replacing the battery. They're so cheap though. I think you can get these batteries for like ten bucks off of Amazon. You could even still use the old battery and swap them back and forth if you wanted (if you're able to resolve the issue on the old battery by calibrating it properly.).
     
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  3. kaiobj
    OP

    kaiobj Member

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    First of all, thanks for the reply!
    Answering some questions:
    Is the flickering occurring when the console is plugged in? Or is it just from running off battery? You might need to replace the battery.
    A: No, this occurs no matter the console is plugged or not, even with the battery almost full charged or not.

    You mentioned you let the battery die then charged it again? Also, you formatted the 3DS? Did you complete the following exactly?
    A: Yes, yes, no. I did not follow the instructions correctly, once I did not all the necessary tools (a screwdriver) for this. But I'm getting one soon and will be able to take the battery out.

    I will do everything and post the results as soon as I get them. Also, I have a friend who has another 3DS and he can lend me his battery for a while, in case it is the problem.

    Thanks again for the quick reply!
     
  4. ciaomao

    ciaomao Member

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    the same happens if the lcd timing is out of spec
     
  5. The Real Jdbye

    The Real Jdbye Always Remember 30/07/08

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    Leaving the charger in after the charging light goes off will not charge it. In fact, if it does, that's bad design, because overcharging a LiPo/Li-Ion battery by more than 0.05 volts will kill it and possibly cause it to fail violently (think lots of smoke and fire)
    Make a video of the issue so people can better understand. It sounds like it might be a hardware failure, but since it works fine in FBI that makes things a bit harder, if it was a hardware failure it should exhibit the same behavior all the time.
     
  6. Codebrain

    Codebrain Member

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    While I'm not OP, I've been having this issue also. It's happening to my bottom screen rather than the top screen however.

    When I asked others about my issue they believe it has to do with the crystal on the screen dying out. I think the screen dies out like that when the crystal starts to get hot, because if I leave the 3ds off for a couple of hours, the screen comes back to life for a few moments.

    Here's a video showing what the issue is:

    https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/s/blmd30aivg2c2pj/3ds.mp4
     
  7. Codebrain

    Codebrain Member

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    I did a bit more testing on this and it seems like my bottom screen only messes up if I leave it on the home menu for about 1-2 minutes. If I launch a game right afterwards the screen doesn't seem to screw up as long as I remain in that game. It definitely seems like a software issue now more than a hardware issue so...

    Edit: More testing reveals for my end that inserting a DS cartridge into my game card reader slot can cause the bottom screen to die out, regardless if I'm in a game or not. Having turned off/on the system and launching a game, then quitting the game, results in the bottom screen not breaking, even after a reboot. That sounds more like a hardware issue now considering the game card reader, however the strange part is that it's still functional. I can still get a DS card to load in the game card slot, with it being fully playable, minus the bottom screen not being present.
     
    Last edited by Codebrain, Aug 15, 2017
  8. kaiobj
    OP

    kaiobj Member

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    Hey, sorry for the late reply! I got the screwdrivers, but I did not have time to work on my 3ds yet. I will post a video as soon as possible.
    Thank you!


    In your case I would replace the flat cable, since it is cheap and relatively easy to replace. Post your results here!
     
  9. kaiobj
    OP

    kaiobj Member

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    So, I'm reviving this thread because I got time to verify and try out some things regarding the status of my 3DS. As I was suggested, I recorded a simple video to show you guys what's going on. I could realize that if I try to run any system software related app, the top screen starts flickering and fading out. If I try to run any cartridge game, downloaded game or homebrew, the screen works as expected. For a moment I thought that it was a hardware issue, but the fact that the screen works sometimes makes things harder.
    Anyway, I still have to try replacing the battery, but I'm not convinced that it would solve my problem.
    Thanks again, guys.

    Video:
     
  10. kaiobj
    OP

    kaiobj Member

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    UPDATE!

    I've found out what is causing this issue: the 3D switch (or effect, if it matters).
    When I start any homebrew and or/luma settings, the 3D effect is not able, so the screen works as expected. But anything that uses the effect is affected. I figured out when I was trying the game Severed on the 3DS. The top screen was not working and when I try to change the level of the 3D effect the screen back to normal!
    Obviously, the first thing I tried was turning off the effect through the parental control. Result: no success. Games like Pokemon and Super Mario 3D land even with the effect turned off refused to work, and I have no idea why.

    So, my question is: is there any homebrew that full disable the 3D, making the 3DS work like the 2DS system? If not, what could I do in order to fix the problem? Could replacing the top screen solve the issue?

    Thanks again!