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Desoldering woes with a Hakko FR-301


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I haven't looked at the schems for the 32x myself, but the sad part is that many times, wires like that blue one are late factory done fixes that don't always end up in the official schems. That is why service bulletins would get released later as follow ups to be used with the schems. 



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I want to offer an honest warning about the Sega 32X Video Noise Fix by Kevtris as posted by SmokeMonster on RetroRGB. Disclaimer: I have massive respect for Kevtris, SmokeMonster and Bob and the crew of RetroRGB and the following is hopefully CLEARLY independent of anything having to do with any of them. I've been working with some in the gaming community on the 32x experience. I wanted to share my 32x hardware experiences with the community.


My most recent work includes recapping a working 32x in the way Console5 intended, PRIOR to the Kevtris fix. That means, use the current cap kit, but without altering the lower board C30 ceramic cap and on the top board,  C17 getting the Console5 originally suggested   470uf  10v cap.


ALL WAS GLORIOUS today with this configuration.  Sound and picture was very sharp running through the HD Retrovision cables. I loaded the complete library of games and took notes on my component video Panasonic CRT array. I wanted to observe video noise from other artifacts and share them.  Was I seeing 'noise' or something else? I soon concluded that video artifacts on the borders might be a CRT issue or overscan area while other things like white pixel flicker on Sega logos might be the 'noise' Kevrtis mentioned, or I might see the noise only via composite.


- Star Wars - noise or gfx glitch on right side of screen both on real cart and MegaSD rom
- Spiderman Web of Fire - gfx glitch below, then title screen above city green lasers  and pink overscan
- Blackthorne - Sega logo has white flicker, then 8 pixel specks of white on title screen, upper left
- RBI baseball - When swing connects with ball, speckles come before switch to new screen.
- Shadow Squadron - flicker on top screen before launch
- WWF Raw - top flicker
Funny, I might remember these things on screen back in the 90s. I then moved the CRT HD Retrovision setup to a 40 inch Samsung LED tv via Genesis HDMI cable (Pound brand I think). White and washed out aside due to the cable, though MOST of the above issues went away!  Star Wars still had the gfx artifacts on the right side of screen, and I wanted to see if I could get rid of flicker on some title screens in games so I tried the Kevtris fix, involving replacing two capacitors. Here is where it went wrong:
1. Perfectly working 32x, recapped per Console5 specs prior to the Kevtris fix.
2. After fix, now I have a problem where some gfx is not showing. I.E. Star Wars - Logo only half comes in, and some gfx appear. Sound is perfect but no imperial destroyer before famous credit crawl. I think this means that the Genesis side is working but the 32x side is not.
Again, the problem is NOT Kevtris. The fix requires a (MICROSCOPIC!!) Surface Mount ceramic capacitor replacement. HERE IS THE PROBLEM: Unless you have the experience, and the magnification via microscope, from my experience, it is not worth messing up your 32x for!  I have a magnifying glass, but trying to get the right leg installed without solder bridging with the surface mount next to it is VERY hard. Being fair, I am still fairly new to surface mount component repairs. Unless you are on your A game in soldering, AND your 32x requires this upgrade, I'd say pass it to a pro or stick with the standard re-cap.
That said, please PM me if you or someone you recommend does 32x repairs.  


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  • 7 months later...

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