(nN)3DS (XL) repair questions

Discussion in '3DS - Console, Accessories and Hardware' started by Kizul Emeraldfire, Sep 17, 2015.

  1. Kizul Emeraldfire
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    Kizul Emeraldfire Member

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    (This is specifically about the "new" Nintendo 3DS XL, but I suppose it could really be aimed at any of the 3DS/2DS models. ¯\(º_O)/¯)

    To make a long story short: my nN3DS XL won't boot up anymore. It's not because of any homebrew or mods; if I plug it in, the Charging light goes on — correctly detecting that the battery needs charging — but the power button does nothing, regardless of whether it's plugged in.

    To make a short story long: I mad a few mistakes when I foolishly disassembled my nN3DS XL in an attempt to fix its D-pad a few days ago. My first mistake was being impatient enough to try to do this, and my second mistake was actually trying to do it. But I digress.

    I've taken it apart about another half-dozen times, and as far as I can tell, every single cable is plugged in correctly. Two things may have happened during the initial disassembly process: 1.) I fried the system via static electricity; or 2.) the system somehow fried itself when I decided to see if it would turn on without a battery in it. I am not a clever man and, at times, I am quite unintelligent.

    This leaves me with roughly three options:
    1. Buy a new nN3DS XL and deal with the loss of DSiWare, StreetPass tags, Activity Log history since I got my original N3DS XL about two years ago (I did a System Transfer from the N3DS XL to the nN3DS XL on February 13 this year, when the nN3DS XL launched), et cetera.
    2. Pay someone (from here, maybe) to be a wizard and repair my nN3DS XL to the point where it will at least turn on and be capable of running the System Transfer.
    3. Pay someone (again, maybe from here) to be a Wizard Grand Master Champion, and have them take the NAND flash memory chip from my current nN3DS XL's motherboard and put it onto a different nN3DS XL's motherboard. (This would probably be almost impossible.)
    Sadly, I don't have a Gateway card or anything else that would allow me to back up the NAND; If I had a NAND backup, I'd just go with Option 1. But since I really don't want to lose any data, how viable would Option 2 and/or Option 3 be? :(
     
  2. Kizul Emeraldfire
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    Kizul Emeraldfire Member

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    So I just ran across this post in the "N3DS NAND backup possible, I hope." thread:
    I have hope that this is all that's wrong with my nN3DS XL, but just to be sure: which cable(s) control the backlight(s) on the nN3DS XL motherboard? Is it the connector at the top-right-most part of the motherboard (highlighted in orange), or is it one of the black-connector ones?

    QPVwUNNHAwwZWJQ5.jpeg
     
  3. trigao

    trigao GBAtemp Tiger

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    hum..... did it blink or something when you turn on?

    my guess, you messed up with top screen ribbon cable, there are SOOOO fragil
    check TWICE all the ribbon cable connections
     
  4. Kizul Emeraldfire
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    Kizul Emeraldfire Member

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    No blinking. :( It does literally nothing when I press the Power button — no lights turn on, no sounds are emitted.

    As I mentioned in my first post, all of the cables seem to be plugged in correctly, too. >.>
     
  5. trigao

    trigao GBAtemp Tiger

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    when i open my 3DSXL, i was sure about the connections too, but its doesnt turn on, open again and check all the ribbon connections.... put them really really tight... and WOW its turned on!!!!

    anyway, it doesnt gonna hurt check again =/

    good luck
     
  6. SmileCitrus

    SmileCitrus GBAtemp Regular

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    Even if either of the backlight cables are disconnected, you'd still get a blue light. It would go off after 5 seconds, but it would at least come on briefly. If the blue light doesn't come on at all, you may have a problem with your battery or the little power board on the left that connects to the motherboard with a wide ribbon cable.

    But for what it's worth, the top right ribbon cable is for the camera. The upper screen backlight and speaker cable are both the same cable. It connects on the underside of the motherboard, next to the LCD cable (the folded one), so you probably don't have to worry about either of them if you haven't disconnected them.

    The lower screen backlight cable is this one:
    [​IMG]
     
  7. Kizul Emeraldfire
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    Kizul Emeraldfire Member

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    Hm — upon closer inspection, it appears that I may have been slightly overzealous when using tweezers to insert/remove the ribbon cable on the "PWB/ABXY/AU-C/RED-01" board (I have the Red nN3DS XL), and possibly broke some of the wires inside it. :( Its ribbon cable seats perfectly on both ends and looks perfectly fine on the contact end that plugs into the motherboard, and the PWB itself appears fine.

    Additionally, as I mentioned in my first post, if I have the battery inserted AND the AC adaptor is plugged in, I get a steady 'Charging' light, and as I was down to three of four bars of battery (before I turned the system off and all of this mess started), it's correctly sensing the battery's level. It's just not turning ON for some reason. :/

    This, however, is making me hopeful that my problem is CONSIDERABLY easier to fix: because if it's just the cable, that's an easy replacement, and if the PWB is fried (unlikely, considering that the 'Charging' light doesn't go away after two or three seconds like it does when I plug in the system without the battery in it) — that's still an easy replacement! :D

    The down side is that unless someone here has a PWB ribbon cable (and, optionally, the PWB itself) that they could send to me, I'll have to buy another nN3DS XL specifically to swap parts from. :/ Plus, since I'm used to repairing much older hardware (id est, stuff from the early pre-optical-media days of NIntendo — mostly NES and Super NES consoles and Nintendo 64 controllers), I still don't know for certain if this is my problem.

    Thank you very much for your help so far, SmileCitrus! :D I really hope that this is a super-easy fix that just requires swapping out a ribbon cable and, optionally, also the PWB…
     
  8. SmileCitrus

    SmileCitrus GBAtemp Regular

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    It's strange that it charges but won't power on. If the power board were bad I would think the console wouldn't charge at all. But maybe if only a few conductors in the cable are damaged it can still charge.

    Before spending money on this though you should try to make certain it's the ribbon cable connecting the power board to the mainboard that's causing the problem.

    You can confirm that nothing else is causing the issue by disconnecting every ribbon cable except for the wide one between the power board and the mainboard, kind of like in the image below (there's no need to actually remove all the other parts though). Then try holding a battery to the connector and pressing the power button. If the power board and ribbon cable are good, the blue light should come on, even though everything else is disconnected.

    [​IMG]

    If you still don't get a blue light, you can be pretty confident the issue is probably is due to the power board or the ribbon cable, since you've eliminated everything else as a possibility.

    I don't see any listings at the moment, but you can probably get the power board and ribbon cable on eBay. I'm not affiliated with him or anything, but I bet this seller might have them if you ask.
     
  9. Kizul Emeraldfire
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    Kizul Emeraldfire Member

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    In that case, it would seem that it IS the PWB's ribbon cable (and/or possibly the board), because I disconnected everything except for the microSDHC card port, held the battery to its connectors correctly, and — nada! :D (I even disconnected the microphone, which was still connected in your photo.)

    This is GOOD NEWS! :D This means that there's a very good chance that if I replace the PWB ribbon cable — and, optionally, the PWB itself — I will be able to simply perform a System Transfer to another nN3DS XL once I can power on my current one! :D

    I was afraid I wouldn't be able to get this sucker working at all, and so I'd have to put up with — among other things — having to redo everything in Super Smash Bros. (And that would suck, because I've got quite a few Friends, 400+ StreetPass tags (accumulated over the last two years), over a million steps registered to the Pedometer, and in SSB4 I've done all but TWO CHALLENGES on the third Challenges card! (Specifically: the hardest one yet (Beat Classic Mode on Intensity 9.0 or Higher) and the longest one yet (getting 50+ hours in regular Smash).))

    So, after I get my new New Nintendo 3DS XL (not necessarily from GameStop): would anyone happen to want my old New Nintendo 3DS XL for parts? XD Aside from the ribbon cable (and a pretty janked-up D-pad that insists on frequently doing double-inputs) and a broken clamp for the Circle Pad's connector, the whole thing is in great functional shape.

    Also, it's interesting that you should link to that seller; I was thinking about getting a replacement D-pad from that exact guy — if I could first successfully remove the D-pad I already had without too much trouble. Boy am I glad I didn't buy the replacement D-pad board first! :D

    Thank you all very much for the help! :) If I'm still having problems, I'll probably come back to this thread. In the meantime: if anyone else needs repair help, they can feel free to hijack this thread! (Unless you're in the future and posting to this thread would cause it to be necro-bumped. Don't do that, future person. Don't be that guy! Or girl.)

    EDIT: Actually, upon a closer inspection of the ribbon cables that connect to the upper-right part of the motherboard, it would appear that those cables are probably damaged worse than the PWB-to-motherboard cable. :x So, my question here is: is it possible to boot the system with the top screen (and cameras, and speakers) effectively (and possibly literally) disconnected? Or will I have to temporarily move my current nN3DS XL's motherboard into another nN3DS XL (and just be really careful about connecting the lid's stuff)?
     
    Last edited by Kizul Emeraldfire, Sep 18, 2015
  10. SmileCitrus

    SmileCitrus GBAtemp Regular

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    Yes, it looks like the system will boot even if the camera and one or both LCDs are disconnected. You do need the speaker cable and the lower screen backlight cable connected though. I tried running one with neither LCD connected and was able to get to the system settings menu fine based on the sounds and music.

    Let me just point out though that on the off-chance that you saw a little space between some of the conductors on the upper screen cable and thought it was damaged, it's normal for it to be like that. The space looks a lot like a scratch at first glance, and more than a few times I've mistaken it for one.
    [​IMG]
     
  11. Kizul Emeraldfire
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    Kizul Emeraldfire Member

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    Excellent! :D That, too, is good news.

    Hm… not-so-good news. Why do the speakers have to be connected, out of curiosity? ò.O I'm certain that my lower screen will work (or, at least, that it will turn on), so I don't need audio cues or anything.

    Nnnnnoooo, more like the tweezers — which, sadly, are ones that aren't meant for crafts/gadget tinkery :x — that I had to use because I didn't have any better ones (and because my fingers are simply too thick to manipulate the cables correctly) made 'bumps' in the cables. In other words: I probably punctured/broke some of the wires in the ribbon cable with my tweezers.

    Admittedly, I'm not SURE that the cables are ruined — because I can't even boot my system up yet — but in case they are ruined, I'm really hoping that I don't need the speakers to be connected for this thing to boot. :x
     
    Last edited by Kizul Emeraldfire, Sep 18, 2015
  12. SmileCitrus

    SmileCitrus GBAtemp Regular

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    It's not really the speakers, per se, that have to be connected. It's the speaker cable. Basically, the system won't boot if either of the backlights are disconnected. I don't really understand the reason why that's the case, but it's the same with the o3DS and o3DSXL. The upper screen backlight connects to a small ZIF connector that's located on the speaker cable assembly, so that's why the speaker cable needs to be connected. The speakers themselves don't really matter. You could even desolder the speakers from the cable and the system would still work fine, albeit silently.
     
  13. Kizul Emeraldfire
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    Kizul Emeraldfire Member

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    Ahhhhh, okay. That makes sense.

    Well, hypothetically, instead of swapping the PWB from another system into mine, I could swap my system's motherboard into another system instead. :D So, in the event the former (and easier) option doesn't work, I could do the latter. :)

    Either way: if someone were to lend me the prerequisite parts, I could repair my nN3DS XL quite handily. :)

    Thank you for the help and clarifications, SmileCitrus! ^^
     
  14. guitarheroknight

    guitarheroknight 1.6180339887

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    wtf is a nN3DS lol? :huh:
     
  15. Kizul Emeraldfire
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    Kizul Emeraldfire Member

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    The capital 'N' stands for 'Nintendo'; the lowercase 'n' stands for the 'new' in 'new Nintendo 3DS'. It's how Nintendo formats the name, so I just abbreviate it accordingly. ¯\(º_O)/¯

    If I could add the confetti-looking things around 'new', I'd consider doing that and just use the long name instead — but that would get tedious to read (and to type).
     
    Last edited by Kizul Emeraldfire, Sep 18, 2015
  16. hundshamer

    hundshamer GBAtemp Advanced Maniac

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    Here are the common abbreviations. The original Nintiendo 3DS is O3DS. The Nintendo 3DS XL is the O3DS XL. The Nintendo 2DS is just the 2DS. The Nintendo "new" 3DS non-XL (not yet available in the US) is the N3DS, and the Nintendo "new" 3DS XL (currently the only one available in the US without importing) is the N3DS XL.

    Nintendo and their multiple revisions. They've been doing it with their handhelds since the beginning.
     
  17. Kizul Emeraldfire
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    Kizul Emeraldfire Member

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    Yeah, but in regard to the Game Boy and Nintendo DS lines, all of the names were quite a bit different enough that you wouldn't confuse someone if you arranged the letters a little differently than someone else. :P (Such as "AGB" instead of "GBA"; both are valid since the former is in the model number, and the latter is just an abbreviation of its official name. ¯\(º_O)/¯)

    I just wish that Nintendo had went with something like the "Super" or "Ultra" 3DS — or 3DS +/3DS Plus — for the new one, rather than going the "NEW!! Super Mario Bros." naming route. XP It would've been far less confusing when you're attempting to find a brand-new 3DS/3DS XL system — or, heaven forbid, a brand-new New Nintendo 3DS XL. x_x

    It'd also make abbreviating it a lot less confusing. :D

    Either way, I'll probably continue to abbreviate "new Nintendo 3DS" as "nN3DS", simply because it's how I abbreviate it. Plus, I doubt it's really THAT confusing to see an additional 'n' tacked onto it; it's fairly easy to guess which system in the 3DS family I'm referring to. :P
     
    Last edited by Kizul Emeraldfire, Sep 19, 2015
  18. hundshamer

    hundshamer GBAtemp Advanced Maniac

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    I was talking about the extent that Nintendo like to revises their machines. I saw the GB, GBP, GBL, GBC, GBA, GBA SP, GBM, DS, DSL, DSi, DSi XL, O3DS, O3DS XL, N3DS, and N3DS XL since I was a kid.
     
    Last edited by hundshamer, Sep 19, 2015
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  19. kamisama666

    kamisama666 Newbie

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    hello , i hate to be that guy since this thread has already a few days , i have a similar problem with my nN3ds , as you guys mentioned before i desconected everything but the thing is , mine actually showed up the blue light ,so i started pluging things one by one until it didnt showed the light again , it seems that even when this cable is unpluged the nN3ds seems to start fine . what is this cable and how do i replace it? http://i.imgur.com/rNEM5oe.jpg



    Edit : it seems to be the camera ribbon , i have no idea if the cable is the problem or perhaps the camera hardware, still no idea how to fix.
     
    Last edited by kamisama666, Oct 1, 2015
  20. Kizul Emeraldfire
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    Kizul Emeraldfire Member

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    Well, the replacement PWB I bought arrived today.

    Turns out, the problem was NOT the ribbon cable. It was the motherboard-side ZIF/LIF connector, which is (unfortunately) completely FUBAR. :(

    I don't suppose there might be anyone to whom I could send my nN3DS XL's motherboard to replace the connector for a modest fee? :(

    Alternatively — since I'm going to be getting the Hyrule Gold Edition nN3DS XL at the end of the month — someone to whom I could send both my current Red system and the Gold system, have them replace the Red system's motherboard-side connector for the PWB's ribbon cable, perform a System Transfer from my Red system to the Gold one, and then send the Gold system back to me (keeping the Red one (and the extra PWB I bought) for spare parts or something)? :( I know it would require a lot of time (and serious soldering skills to replace the connector). I just don't want to have to start over with a blank slate. :(


    EDIT: Never mind! :D I know a guy who knows a guy! And with that, I no longer need this thread for my problems.

    This thread is now for kamisama666 and anyone else's problems! …Unfortunately, I don't know how to solve kamisama666's problem. :(
     
    Last edited by Kizul Emeraldfire, Oct 2, 2015