Hardware Standard new 3DS with red blinking light

Pluupy

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Just a little thread of my dabbling with a new 3DS purchased on Ebay as broken.

Purchased a used new 3DS on Ebay for $60, free shipping. Stripped of face plates, stylus, micro sd, charger, and battery. Listing said the device just didn't power on.

Upon arrival, doesn't seem to have ever been opened as the rubber feet don't have any damage (since you need to remove them to get the screws). Incredible exterior condition. The screens don't have any damage. Buttons aren't greasy or blemished, as if they are brand new.

2018/1/12 3:00pm EST
I opened up the device. Uses philips screws on housing, tri-wing screws on micro sd slot. Four ribbon cables attached to back lower housing of new 3DS: L/R button ribbons, power ribbon, and SD reader ribbon. Removed with care. Board is clean. Wifi module disconnected and reconnected for funsies (and just in case of black screen error).

I tried to plug in the new 3DS to my old 3DS XL's OEM charger. Orange light then nothing.

I tried to use my (fully charged) old 3DS XL's SPR-003 battery by touching the three contacts against those of the new 3DS's. Orange charge light. Disconnected charger. Red flashing light (this is normal either way because the XL batteries are different voltage than smaller 3DS models).

Purchased new 3DS battery KTR-003 from Nintendo. Arrived today. Plugged in to new 3DS console. Orange charge light comes on. Upon pressing of power button, single red light flashes. No pop sound from speaker. Screens do not turn on. Going to leave it for an hour to let the battery charge.

2018/1/12 4:00PM EST

Battery should be relatively charged if charging function worked. The orange light is no longer on.

I have removed the charger from the device. After pressing the power button, there is no longer a red flashing light. There are now no lights at all. No red, blue, nothing. I reseated the battery and no change. Rather odd.

After some more research, the 3DS fuses could be blown. Luckily, I have a multimeter and the knowhow to open the device up. I don't know how to use a multimeter, though. Or where to begin using it for that matter.

2018/1/12 5:00PM EST

Ok so I have an INNOVA 3306 multimeter with me. After watching this video, I can probably make an educated guess where one fuse is located. Used my Galaxy S8 to take a sharper image of the new 3DS motherboard for reference (attached). One fuse located exactly to the right of the charging port above the 03-labeled component. Touching this fellow with the multimeter revealed a current of some kind, so it must be up to something.

To be specific, I set the multimeter to continuity and touched the probes on both sides of the wee component. The multimeter displayed "000", which apparently means there is continuity and ergo a current.

I may need to dismantle the device a bit more if the other fuse isn't on top of the motherboard. This means I will have to disconnect the ribbon cables, which I detest, so may hesitate.

I've seen the interesting idea online of inserting an SD card with the files needed for a9lh or b9s. I'll format my ol DS Two's sd card see what I can do. This seems more like a hard ware problem, to be honest.

2018/1/12 6:00PM EST

Alright so I found the second fuse thanks to this thread here on GBATemp. As I was lifting the second motherboard that sits under battery, I found the second fuse there (or at least a component that looks like the first fuse with nothing else that looks like it around).

The multimeter displays a simple "1" when I touch it, I think. My hand shook a bit and had trouble holding up the multimeter at an angle I could see it. Tried multiple times. Gives me an array of numbers before settling to "1". This means there is no continuity, no current.

Interesting thing I noticed: I looked online at people who have also dismantled their standard new 3DS, and noticed that...they don't have TAPE on their power motherboard. This tiny piece of tape is specifically on the bottom rim of this little motherboard. I'm thinking the previous owner was up to some shenanigans and this 3DS was, indeed, opened. Fiddling with the power and fucked up somewhere? ...or maybe this is something new 3DSs come with and...other people don't have it for some reason.

Images of taped-up power motherboard:
Top of power motherboard
Bottom of power motherboard

At this point, it seems the power board could be the cause of the problem. This could run me $10 if I buy a replacement on Ebay. I don't know how to solder (or own one) so changing the fuse itself won't be possible.

UPDATE: 2018/1/27 7:00PM EST

Purchased replacement power board from aforementioned link in previous update. Arrived today despite shipping claiming it would arrive Feb 16 (woo). Shipping from China is rough. The component did not come in an anti-static bag, so...that is a little weird...but will try it anyway. Here's hoping! Plugged in power board and made sure all ribbons were secure.

After closing up the device and placing in the battery, the device does not turn on. I have pluggin in the OEM charger and the orange light of the device turns on. Pressing the power button does not turn on the device. Perhaps the battery has discharged in the last two weeks, so going to wait an hour for the battery to charge (if it is) before breaking out the multimeter.

Any suggestions in comments are highly valued.
 

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Last edited by Pluupy,

Pluupy

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Sounds like someone tried to soft mod it and bricked it.
I am unfamiliar with 3DS bricks however from what I see online, bricks typically start the device and either:
  • Have a blue screen and blue power light on.
  • Have a black screen and blue power light on.
  • Have a "an error has occured" and blue power light.
These seem to be software bricks. I don't know what a hard ware brick looks like. Despite being a constant dark joke in the community, it doesn't seem there is a lot of information on what a brick is and looks like.
 

Pluupy

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Ah just as a final follow up to this thread, the new 3DS never turned on. I believe the battery and power board works fine, but the motherboard itself has a faulty component. I had resold the new 3DS on Ebay as "for parts" with the battery and a cheap yoshi faceplate I bought for $3. Sold at a profit ($90 after ebay cut), and so that is where the story of that device ends with me.
 

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