1. am714

    OP am714 GBAtemp Advanced Fan
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    If it was a bad nand chip wouldn't the bootrom just throw an error? The eMMC Status Checker is in CTRTransfer TD9 right? This user's problem seems very similar to mine

    Edit: Do you have any idea on why the console boots only if slapped on the back?
     
    Last edited by am714, Sep 30, 2020
  2. TurdPooCharger

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    Whatever that's disconnected on your motherboard starts working again when you hit it back into place.

    It could be a broken BGA solder joint. Find a electronic repair shop that can reflow the entire motherboard in one of those specialized ovens that has precise temperature and timer control. If that's not available, someone might be able to do this with a hot air station and flux.
     
  3. am714

    OP am714 GBAtemp Advanced Fan
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    Well shi* that gonna be a problem. I guess I'll just give up and either sell this for parts or use it as a paperweight for my ps2 slim case
     
  4. TurdPooCharger

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    Option #1 - Replace the motherboard ~ USD $43 / EUR 36. Everything else on the n3DSXL is still good, right?
     
  5. am714

    OP am714 GBAtemp Advanced Fan
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    Sorry, what do you mean by everything else is good? Like hardware? Because I haven't opened it up yet.

    P.S just like the other user in the thread you linked the console works properly as long DPAD DOWN is being held.
     
    Last edited by am714, Oct 1, 2020
  6. TurdPooCharger

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    If the cost of replacing the motherboard is cheaper than buying another n3DSXL and replacing it yourself isn't too difficult, it might make sense to keep the current n3DSXL than gutting it for parts or selling it off at a steep lose where you don't recuperate much money.

    When you disassemble the n3DSXL, try stuffing a small square piece of cardboard or ear plug foam right under the d-pad area. This might apply enough pressure to keep what's broken connected to the motherboard.

    How odd because that area has just the d-pad and game cart reader. I can't see what breaks around there, except maybe the cart reader's ribbon cable popping out of place.
    n3DSXL_(gamecart_connector).png
     
    Last edited by TurdPooCharger, Oct 1, 2020
  7. am714

    OP am714 GBAtemp Advanced Fan
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    I can try opening the console up tomorrow when I'm back from school, would be hilarious if it was the gamecard slot to cause all this mess (unable to load ctrnand firm, power light fades off, crashes etc...).

    Going to sleep now.
     
  8. am714

    OP am714 GBAtemp Advanced Fan
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    The gamecard slot connector seems fine to me.

    EDIT: Reconnected the ribbon cable for the game card slot and reassembled the console, it hasn't crashed yet. I'll play a few online games and if it doesn't crash till this night I guess that was the problem.

    EDIT 2: Straight back to not booting and crashing.
     

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    Last edited by am714, Oct 2, 2020
  9. TurdPooCharger

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    Damn. Alright, last idea I can offer is to try the untested ear plug foam trick. Let's hope that applying pressure around that area forces the unknown part that broke to stay connected to the motherboard. Good luck! *crosses fingers*
    n3DSXL_ear_plug.png
     
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  10. am714

    OP am714 GBAtemp Advanced Fan
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    So if I'm right I have to get to the other side of the motherboard and put an ear plug between the dpad and whatever is broken?
     
  11. TurdPooCharger

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    Almost correct. There's not much space between the d-pad board and game cart board, so the next best place to try wedge something in there is the right below the d-pad. There should be a little cavity between the top half of the shell housing underside and game cart board. The ear plug foam should provide enough spring force without hurting anything, but may you have to either trim a plug or double stack plugs depending how dense the foam is.
     
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  12. am714

    OP am714 GBAtemp Advanced Fan
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    Aight I see, I'll try after lunch.
     
    Last edited by am714, Oct 3, 2020
  13. am714

    OP am714 GBAtemp Advanced Fan
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    The game card slot board seems fine here.

    Edit: Tried what you said with the ear plug, console still crashed, gonna try putting a second one tomorrow.
     

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    Last edited by am714, Oct 3, 2020
  14. TurdPooCharger

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    Yah, I don't suspect the game cart board to have a hardware fault.

    Also, the ear plugs I had in mind are the ones for sleeping or protection from loud noises. You can substitute ear plugs from headphones/earphones if they're small enough to fit in the cavity, squishy enough to compress in size, yet stiff/dense enough to push against the shell housing + game cart board.

    The idea of putting something in there is in hopes of recreating the physical condition of the constant d-pad button push at that area → bend the motherboard just the right way to force the mystery component's broken joint/trace to come back into contact with what it needs to connect to while not bending it too much to break the board.

    If placing ear plugs around the d-pad and game cart boards doesn't work, try other areas of the board. I'm going to go with the gut instinct it's your NAND chip is what's wrong or partially disconnected. See the Samsung chip in the yellow square at Step 13 of the [iFixit] Nintendo 3DS XL 2015 Teardown. If you stuff something on top of that chip, try it with a cut square piece of sponge in the size and shape of the chip. Don't have it pressing so hard that it damages the bottom LCD screen or digitzer. Too much pressure can make permanent bright white splotches on the light guide back film and cause false touch inputs for the touchscreen.

    ***

    I caught a glimpse of your original reply #32 about finding a replacement EUR n3DSXL motherboard with working accessing to EUR region eShop. Those don't exist on Aliexpress, eBay, ZedLabz, etc. All the leftover mobos sold on those retailers are native USA region.

    Before you decide to get rid of your n3DSXL motherboard,
    • (3) When another New series 2DS/3DS is obtained, call Nintendo to have them transfer your NNID to the replacement system. Completing a system transfer might not be possible as your n3DSXL is prone to crashing.
    • (4) * Run the CTRTransfer (Type D9) - eMMC Status Checker. If the test finds the NAND chip is no good, definitely look into switching to an EmuNAND setup. * Due to the high risk of super softbricking the 3DS + CFW firmwares, you may want to avoid this test if you don't own a ntrboot compatible flashcart and the test goes awry.
    • (5) Don't throw away the bad motherboard! Sell it at a steep low price to someone who is willing to take it off your hands and try to reflow the board on their own. Since the 3DS production has discontinued, replacement parts like the mobo are going to be hard to find in the coming years.
     
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  15. am714

    OP am714 GBAtemp Advanced Fan
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    Ye my bad, when I saw "ear plugs" I thought they were those things on old ear phones (I mean ear plug, you "plug" them in your ears), and not the sleeping protection ones. In what exact place do I have to put them, because I think I put them in the wrong one.


    Ran eMMC Status Checker like 3 days ago and it passed all tests.

    Welp rip my eshop access then (Yes I do actually care about that).


    What if I just CTRTransfer from the bad MB to the working one?

    Getting a new/refurbished console I don't think it's gonna happen, they cost some what over 100 euros (maybe?? atleast the one that don't have phisical damage, correct me if I'm wrong, I just wanna avoid buying anything oversea) here. Transferring the NNID is not a big deal if it's the same region I just change the serial code in SecureInfo or formatting from System Settings, that unlinks NNID afaik.
     
    Last edited by am714, Oct 4, 2020
  16. TurdPooCharger

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    Lol, I got the English terms wrong, too. What I referred to early as "earphones" (lmao) is supposed to be called "earbuds", and the rubber or silicone gel pieces that go in the ears are called "earbud tips" or "earbud caps".

    Sandwich the cap between the plastic housing (like the one shown below) and game cart board around where the circled TG is found. Move the cap as close as you can towards the (DOWN) of the d-pad. Feel for squishiness when test fitting the shell housing, earbud cap, and game cart board.
    • If it takes a lot pressure to push them together, you'll need to use a smaller or shorter cap.
    • If the fit is 'too loose', try stacking layers of note card paper underneath the cap to raise the height.
    • You can also try adding two or more neighboring caps if there's enough space around that square area. This might help apply a more even distribution of pressure.
    n3DSXL_upper_shell_underside.png

    :unsure:

    Maybe the NAND chip has broken BGA joint(s) that are usually connected to the motherboard when the n3DSXL is cooler. After using the n3DSXL for a short duration, the chip gets hot enough to cause it to shift out of place where those joint(s) briefly lift up. When that happens, Luma3DS stops talking to the 3DS firmware which then leads to the random crashes.

    The problem with BGA joints is that you can't see they're broken with the naked eye.. since they're under the chip. The only way to tell they're broken is by x-ray.

    On other devices where reflowing a motherboard isn't an available option, some people try to fix broken joints using pressurizing techniques. An infamous example would be the early made XBOX 360 and its Red Ring of Death caused by CPU / GPU having crappy solder joints that broke when the chips overheated due to poor air cooling. People 'fixed' this by replacing screws for the heatsink with shorter ones, allowing the user to torque the heatsink closer to the chips. This does reconnect the CPU / GPU on the XBOX360's mobo, but at the expense of permanently warping and shortening the overall lifespan of that board.

    Wedging a piece of sponge on top of the n3DSXL's NAND chip might provide a short term solution. If it works, don't expect the n3DSXL to last that long. Maybe 1-2 years tops before the NAND chip burns itself out when it has no surface area to radiate the heat. Maybe you can get away with the poor cooling issue by using thermal pad as the stacking material.

    EDIT - And because one can't see or know which BGA joint(s) are bad, any chips (not just the NAND) on the motherboard are suspects.

    It's possible to decrypt and clone your EUR n3DSXL's NAND image on a different USA n3DSXL motherboard but due to console unique identifiers found in a file called the otp.bin that's burnt directly into the ARM CPU (can't be overwritten or reflashed), * you can't fool Nintendo server side check. They'll know that NAND image doesn't really belong on that replacement motherboard, which can lead to a super ban.

    * It's supposedly be possible to spoof the otp.bin from a different system using a Luma3DS fork by truedread. Because no one has yet to attempt cloning their NAND image on a different region motherboard, spoof the OTP, accessed eShop and play online games, and report back their outcome, we don't know if this idea works or not.
    NAND cloning is one of the few 3DS softmodding subjects I rather not provide one-on-one help because of a previous encounter with someone else who misused it.

    Was going to write something about performing System Transfer between two 3DS systems that aren't from the same regions.

    Old 3DS series can region change the 3DS firmware with access to the new region's eShop; New 3DS series not so much.
     
    Last edited by TurdPooCharger, Oct 4, 2020
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  17. am714

    OP am714 GBAtemp Advanced Fan
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    That's exactly where I put it, I'll try moving it closer to the DPAD DOWN/RIGHT area or put another one.

    EDIT: Applyng pressure on that same area (between down and right dpad, but on the shell with the console) also makes the n3dsxl "work", still I don't get how these two are related since the console can work with only one of / without them

    EDIT 2: There are also cases of the console completely shutting down like if the battery was removed so I like you said it might actually be the eMMC this whole time.

    Wouldn't anyone who has done a CTRTransfer be banned then? I was talking about EUR to EUR
     
    Last edited by am714, Oct 4, 2020
  18. TurdPooCharger

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    EDIT - Not all CTRTransfer(s) are done the same way.

    Yes, [ that variety of CTRTransfer / NAND cloning / unauthorized System Transfer ], can get you banned. It doesn't matter if the target n3DSXL motherboard is native USA leftover from Aliexpress or native EUR cannibalized from a secondhand n3DSXL.

    If you were to reflash a nearly 1-to-1 copy of your broken n3DSXL's { CTRNAND + TWLN + TWLP } images to a replace mobo (only difference would be recalculated CMACs), everything would function exactly the same except for using online services. The target board with the source board's nand image would present conflicting console unique identifiers to Nintendo. The otp.bin (OTP / one time protection programmable) contains stuff like the DeviceID can be compared against their server records that your user profile, NNID, eShop account, etc. wasn't registered to that unknown board.

    The best way to describe this discrepancy would be if you went on twinstrangers.net, found someone who looks exactly like you, and decided to trade each other's driver license, passport, social security, birth certificate, and every conceivable paperwork because you guys want to cosplay the other person's life for a change. You guys fly to a meetup spot and exchange everything, even travel clothes! The Nintendo server side check in this story would be the person behind the customs & border gate who has the final say whether to let you board on the airplane when flying to your new home country. Unfortunately for you, the custom guy you got has a crazy knack of spotting the slightest thing that seems off about you. Maybe the questions he's asking and the replies you gave don't match up to what he's expecting as the answers. Then boom! Border dude pulls you aside for further interview and takes your fingerprints, which doesn't match that on your lookalike's borrowed passport. Both you and fake am714 are caught!
     
    Last edited by TurdPooCharger, Oct 5, 2020
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  19. ack

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    i had something like this happen to me, but it didnt have CFW, and it would stop working when i slapped it on the back
     
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  20. am714

    OP am714 GBAtemp Advanced Fan
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    I can guess both the CTRNAND and OTP hold this DeviceID thing then?

    P.S Wasn't OTP One Time Programmable?
     
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