Hardware [Question/Help]N3DS - component replacement

Kubas_inko

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Ok, so, my "friend" gave me his N3DS to repair it. Every time you power it up, it just pops and turns off. Everybody knows that that is ribbon cable problem. However, in this case, it wasn't problem with the cable (because I tried it with 2 different displays, speakers, and cameras), but with a connector. When I looked inside speaker connector (on the motherboard), I saw that about 8 pins were bent. So I desoldered the connector (accidentally desoldering resistor around it) and actually accidentally removed 1 pin of the connector.
So to my questions. Can anyone tell me...
1. What component have I desoldered (I think it is a resistor, but I am not sure)?
2. What connector is that (if it has any name) and maybe, where can I buy it?
3. The destroyed pin that you can see in the picture, what pin is it (power, ground etc.)?

Pictures:
0949lkA.jpg

W7shoJ7.jpg

7MFTBlV.jpg
QvKnQWC.jpg

Thank you guys for any response and help.
 
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It looks like you are using a soldering iron that is too blunt and big for this repair application or holding the heated tip for too long judging by how much boiling / lifting of the printed circuit.

For the circled red tiny looking thing that's missing on the right, that looks like your typical SMD resistor. Tiny f*ckers. Measure the dimension compared to the other nearby two ones. In order to get a equivalent resistor value replacement, bust out that digital multimeter and hope those two give similar Ω. Check out popular online electronic component stores like mouser, digikey, newark, futureelectronics, arrow, etc in purchasing (several) SMD resistors [back ups in case you lose a few].

That ripped off contact lead at the left is gonna be REALLY hard to fix. This is almost impossible to do unless it is done by a even more specialized form of soldering called, micro-soldering... Only very few people have this type of soldering tool, magnify glass & eyes, and mastery of steady surgical hands have a shot in getting this done. You could try using those injectable silver paste needles to try filling in and solder heating the gap in. May or may not work.
 

Kubas_inko

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It looks like you are using a soldering iron that is too blunt and big for this repair application or holding the heated tip for too long judging by how much boiling / lifting of the printed circuit.

For the circled red tiny looking thing that's missing on the right, that looks like your typical SMD resistor. Tiny f*ckers. Measure the dimension compared to the other nearby two ones. In order to get a equivalent resistor value replacement, bust out that digital multimeter and hope those two give similar Ω. Check out popular online electronic component stores like mouser, digikey, newark, futureelectronics, arrow, etc in purchasing (several) SMD resistors [back ups in case you lose a few].

That ripped off contact lead at the left is gonna be REALLY hard to fix. This is almost impossible to do unless it is done by a even more specialized form of soldering called, micro-soldering... Only very few people have this type of soldering tool, magnify glass & eyes, and mastery of steady surgical hands have a shot in getting this done. You could try using those injectable silver paste needles to try filling in and solder heating the gap in. May or may not work.
Hopefully, I can trace the missing pin and repair it that way.
and about the connector? I need replacement for it too :( :cry:. But I have no idea how are they called (or their specifications)
I really mostly need help finding the connector.
 
Last edited by Kubas_inko,
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and about the connector? I need replacement for it too :( :cry:. But I have no idea how are they called (or their specifications)

Yeah... about that. Do you still have the old connector for design reference? It's hard to find pictures of New 3DS non-XL motherboards to see how it looks. The pins count appears to be 15(17?)/15 side-to-side. At this point, I'd say it is crap shot salvaging this motherboard even if you get the replacement SMD resistor and compatible connector. Those wrinkly scorched sections of the circuit are what makes it iffy with possible broken traces. If you got a multimeter, you can try testing for end-to-end connection at different junctions to see if they're still good.

I was going to suggest eBay for working N3DS with broken screens, but I see you live in Czechia so parts availability must be exceedingly rare.
 

Kubas_inko

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Yeah... about that. Do you still have the old connector for design reference? It's hard to find pictures of New 3DS non-XL motherboards to see how it looks. The pins count appears to be 15(17?)/15 side-to-side. At this point, I'd say it is crap shot salvaging this motherboard even if you get the replacement SMD resistor and compatible connector. Those wrinkly scorched sections of the circuit are what makes it iffy with possible broken traces. If you got a multimeter, you can try testing for end-to-end connection at different junctions to see if they're still good.

I was going to suggest eBay for working N3DS with broken screens, but I see you live in Czechia so parts availability must be exceedingly rare.
If I can find the connector and resistor, I would definitely try it. The connector was destroid in the procces (it just felt apart). But I found this (the black one)
kF1HkF6.jpg

My last chance will probably be allocating 6 -10 hours to soldering wires to individual pin and then to individual pin on the ribbon cable :rofl2:
 
Last edited by Kubas_inko,
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Using Digikey to determine this connect specifications, https://www.digikey.com/products/en/connectors-interconnects/ffc-fpc-flat-flexible-connectors/399?FV=dd40001,ffe0018f,1b480004&mnonly=0&ColumnSort=0&page=1&stock=0&pbfree=0&rohs=0&cad=0&datasheet=0&nstock=0&photo=0&nonrohs=0&newproducts=0&quantity=0&ptm=0&fid=0&pageSize=500

ffc-cable-usage-guide-2.jpg


Flat Flex Type:
FCC (Flat Flexible Cable)
Locking Feature: Flip Lock
Bottom Contact (pins are on the bottom, flex cable rest atop pins)
Horizontal Entry (flex cable goes in parallel to the motherboard)
Number of Positions: 15 (pins) as best guess? [I am not certain if 15, 16, or 17 due to the left bank pins vs. the right bank]
Pitch: 0.0??" (0.??mm) , (distant between adjacent pins)
[You're going to have to measure the length of first and last pin and divide this by number of pins]


Hey? Do you still have that flex cable that went with this connector? Count the number of contacts it has.
 
Last edited by TurdPooCharger,

Kubas_inko

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Using Digikey to determine this connect specifications, https://www.digikey.com/products/en/connectors-interconnects/ffc-fpc-flat-flexible-connectors/399?FV=dd40001,ffe0018f,1b480004&mnonly=0&ColumnSort=0&page=1&stock=0&pbfree=0&rohs=0&cad=0&datasheet=0&nstock=0&photo=0&nonrohs=0&newproducts=0&quantity=0&ptm=0&fid=0&pageSize=500

ffc-cable-usage-guide-2.jpg


Flat Flex Type:
FCC (Flat Flexible Cable)
Locking Feature: Flip Lock
Bottom Contact (pins are on the bottom, flex cable rest atop pins)
Horizontal Entry (flex cable goes in parallel to the motherboard)
Number of Positions: 15 (pins) as best guess? [I am not certain if 15, 16, or 17 due to the left bank pins vs. the right bank]
Pitch: 0.0??" (0.??mm) , (distant between adjacent pins)
[You're going to have to measure the length of first and last pin and divide this by number of pins]


Hey? Do you still have that flex cable that went with this connector? Count the number of contacts it has.
Sure I have the flex. It is flex from screen and speakers :). Will post once I am home
 

Kubas_inko

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Using Digikey to determine this connect specifications, https://www.digikey.com/products/en/connectors-interconnects/ffc-fpc-flat-flexible-connectors/399?FV=dd40001,ffe0018f,1b480004&mnonly=0&ColumnSort=0&page=1&stock=0&pbfree=0&rohs=0&cad=0&datasheet=0&nstock=0&photo=0&nonrohs=0&newproducts=0&quantity=0&ptm=0&fid=0&pageSize=500

ffc-cable-usage-guide-2.jpg


Flat Flex Type:
FCC (Flat Flexible Cable)
Locking Feature: Flip Lock
Bottom Contact (pins are on the bottom, flex cable rest atop pins)
Horizontal Entry (flex cable goes in parallel to the motherboard)
Number of Positions: 15 (pins) as best guess? [I am not certain if 15, 16, or 17 due to the left bank pins vs. the right bank]
Pitch: 0.0??" (0.??mm) , (distant between adjacent pins)
[You're going to have to measure the length of first and last pin and divide this by number of pins]


Hey? Do you still have that flex cable that went with this connector? Count the number of contacts it has.
I can't find anything close to it there :(
 
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I once saw ONE New 3DS non-XL motherboard on AliExpress. I wonder why N3DS parts are so hard to find...

Nintendo N3DSXL motherboards aren't yet sold on eBay and Aliexpress because the N3DSXL is still in production. Nintendo uses a handful of contractors in China & Taiwan to manufacture these boards to go into making the system. They will not spare replacement parts for public sale as these will go to Nintendo for in-house repairs and warranty work. Only when the N3DSXL production starts winding down due to its planned 'End of Life' date will you start seeing them show up online. Because Nintendo pays their contractors upfront a set amount money to have an certain number of those parts made, those contractors are obligated to produce those parts even when no further completely assembled N3DSXL units are needed for retail.

The leftovers will hang around the contractors' inventories as Nintendo have no further use for them at that point. Those contractors, while there probably are clauses that they're not allowed to directly sell us those extras, aren't going to pass over the opportunity making extra money on the side selling parts that would have gone to waste.
 

zacchi4k

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Nintendo N3DSXL motherboards aren't yet sold on eBay and Aliexpress because the N3DSXL is still in production. Nintendo uses a handful of contractors in China & Taiwan to manufacture these boards to go into making the system. They will not spare replacement parts for public sale as these will go to Nintendo for in-house repairs and warranty work. Only when the N3DSXL production starts winding down due to its planned 'End of Life' date will you start seeing them show up online. Because Nintendo pays their contractors upfront a set amount money to have an certain number of those parts made, those contractors are obligated to produce those parts even when no further completely assembled N3DSXL units are needed for retail.

The leftovers will hang around the contractors' inventories as Nintendo have no further use for them at that point. Those contractors, while there probably are clauses that they're not allowed to directly sell us those extras, aren't going to pass over the opportunity making extra money on the side selling parts that would have gone to waste.

I'm talking about the non XL model. Parts for the N3DS XL are extremely easy to find
 
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I'm talking about the non XL model. Parts for the N3DS XL are extremely easy to find

The New non XL is probably a special case. These were probably never made in sufficient numbers for excess spare parts compared to the more popular XL variety. Nintendo must have done a bang of a job having the leanest production run making just enough to satisfy (mostly) its home Japanese market and those few bones thrown to us North Americans/Europeans in those special releases (ie. ex: New Mario Edition, black/white Thanksgiving).

Which means it is all the more important to take care of these original sized ones because they literally are rare.
 

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