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Question about an original Gameboy screen


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I possibly have a future near mint Nintendo Gameboy. However, the seller tells me that the screen looks a bit lighter that others he's seen. He's going to send me more pictures this evening.

Does anyone know right off what could cause this?

 

Thanks!

Edited by guitarmas
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If you want to stay "stock" you could buy the "MIB" GB, AND a working GB with a good screen and have the screen board swapped.  The modern solutions are really nice, but if you want the original experience, you would want to stick with a good original screen.  (Then get a modern IPS screen for the 2nd Gameboy.)

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The GB does have a contrast knob that makes the screen lighter or darker. Don't get me wrong, it was always a terrible screen, but its late 80's tech. The weird blue pixels on the gold/green background always looked weird to me too. If it has no lines, the zebra strip is probably fine (they dry out and cause problems as the system ages) if its truly lighter than normal, there could be a bad cap or the knob may be bad, probably an easy fix for those that know what their doing. The game boy pocket has a much nicer screen with greyish/black pixels on a light grey background. Unfortunately the two AAA batteries only run 5-8 hours depending on the game and battery type. Always wanted to try dropping a pocket screen in an original dmg, but never had one apart, so I don't know if their compatible or not.

 

Lots of options exist to improve the screen, or just replace it, but my first dmg still is unmoded, despite a bad screen, I find it charming in a way, besides, I mostly play on color or advance when I do play.

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I posted this in another post here pretty recently later last month.  I had picked up a basically dead GB, harvested the PCB/battery connectors attached to it and that's it and put all this around the wreckage to resurrect it.

 

SO to answer your question, yes, if the screen is going and it's not something else going bad on the main rear board (GB has that board, and a second the button contacts and LCD are attached to) you can do this.  Better yet on a mint looking GB if you want to do it, the screen you see here you can drop into an original system, no soldering required so there's no need to mutilate it, and you could store/save the board in the original box if that's your desire not to break it up.  You also could find another jacked gameboy that just had a good front board and original LCD and stuff it in the nice one too if you want to keep it stock.

 

The screen below has a brightness wheel/button combo setup with it where the original contrast wheel goes.  It has 32 screen color options, and as you can see (blow it up) you can enable a dot matrix display or leave it solid, and also top left you can enable a battery meter too.  If you go this route I can give you the original supplier of these with the best quality parts on aliexpress so you don't et some second tier junk as this one only deals in top parts including ABS shells, not the usually flimsy flexible stuff.

 

Whoever made you the offer at $60 can piss off.  What you see below... the shell, the lens, the buttons, the contacts, the modern LCD/top PCB combo, the PCB/chips to drive this screen, two ribbon cables, and even the 2P port cover piece all cost me $50 shipped.

 

GameboyDMG-V5-OSD-IPS-PokemonYellow-Blue.thumb.jpg.606336031485de05010b9c9ed908946b.jpg

 

Edit: Here's the kit and seller, anyone here who wants quality parts to upgrade/repair their old stuff use this one, it's one private quality modders use, not the common peddler garbage that ends up being parted out and charged double for on US sites like handheld legend, retro repair shop etc.

https://www.aliexpress.us/item/3256806236408995.html?spm=a2g0o.order_list.order_list_main.5.177518023AP9PZ&gatewayAdapt=glo2usa

Edited by Tanooki
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4 hours ago, guitarmas said:

Thanks again for the replies.

 

If I get a MIB GMB, will adding the new display hurt or help the value?

Modded displays such as IPS panels actually massively increase the value (assuming the unit isn't brand new otherwise). People will pay more for the convenience of not needing to perform a mod themselves. Especially when the mod in question makes the system significantly more usable.

Edited by RetroSonicHero
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@guitarmas Hurt if you make any alterations to the exterior.  Some crybaby will be all upset you cracked it open and didn't leave it factory fresh.  But easily as such you could do a drop in 100% screen for yourself, and if you get fed up and sell out, you could easily swap it back in and most sane people wouldn't be the wiser to it.

 

If I were you if you wanted to go that route, buy a MIB and leave it in the box which I did do, and then find another that's beat to shit (or nice to save the headache) and put the modern panel in to get the best of both worlds.  This is my other one, it's immaculate and early if you notice with those inserts. :D

Gameboy-DMG-01-1989.thumb.JPG.03f94f1cb1beae342fc00180644b8a69.JPG

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10 hours ago, guitarmas said:

Thanks again for the replies.

 

If I get a MIB GMB, will adding the new display hurt or help the value?

Personally, I think upgrading will hurt the value of a MIB (especially with matching box and console serial #), but I don't think repairing will devalue it. 

 

Upgrades are for daily drivers...

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1 hour ago, guitarmas said:

I have a Gameboy I'm looking at. I see the serial number on the back of the console. Where is the serial number to match it up with?

Not all have it - it was a sticker on the back of some boxes.

 

There is currently one on eBay with pics. - Not my auction nor am I recommending this - just posting this for the picture reference.

 

https://www.ebay.com/itm/145278570669

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Around the middle part of the 90s Nintendo started to glue on these white pieces on the rear of the boxes of their systems with between the two strips a registration card and bar code that would match the serial inside the system.  Sometimes given the era the scan of the code was enough to warrant it with a dawn of the net handshake to Nintendo's systems in some overnight upload I guess...others you had to fill it in, mail it in.


The boxed GBs I have had (3) in a few recent years now, none were new enough to have those being between 1989-92(93?) but a bit later ones, the pocket, the virtual boy, later SNES systems, the NES top loader too all had them.

 

As he linked above that's the later model style box the GB had some will have that, some won't, and the earlier type in my image none should have it.  Personally I'd go for an older model, by default the box is cleaner from that stuff and no worries about paranoid fools getting worked up over matching serials.

 

I didn't see if this was a deal, but seemed with the specific search I limited to be the least with some trolls trying to score twice this (hah)  but this is the style of box/system you'd want to get a clean one.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/126098677604


Edit did some checking seems the old box did have the serial/sticker shenanigans -- I'd keep an eye on this, it's a late one given the date written on the back.  It has quite a few active bids with days to go already just over $150.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/126308324312   This one is shockingly clean, very clean, even the link cable is sealed up in the bag still, but the earbuds are missing (very cheap, easy to OEM replace these) even has all the old papers and the receipt too in one of the images.  If you want a MIB watch it, see if it ends in a space you're ok paying.

Edited by Tanooki
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My personal stock Gameboy's screen looks exactly like that, for what it's worth. I'm pretty sure that's how it's supposed to look. The screen typically has a shadow over it anyways on the edges anyways, because of the plastic cover.

Edited by RetroSonicHero
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Yeah what he said, I'd be more concerned about the whole original issue you said with the brightness or whatever it was.  But it could just be he's remembering poorly.  I'd like to see the thing turned on, Tetris title screen up since it's an easy one to check stuff with, and how the panel displays that at a few points on the contrast wheel.

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Thanks for your replies again.

 

Not only is the screen off centered, but it's also at an angle. Everything else looks great. Except for the A and B buttons. They're a bit scuffed up. But everything else is CIB.

Edited by guitarmas
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I feel like what's more likely, if something is truly wrong, is a line on the screen could be missing. This is a common problem with the DMG Gameboy, but can be somewhat easily fixed by using a soldering iron on the contact points for the screen. Like @Tanooki suggested, using a game like Tetris is a really good way to test for that, if it's an option for you. As it'll be extremely obvious if something doesn't look right.

 

That's my guess, anyway. It's an issue that can creep up even on "mint" consoles. Extremely common. And typically, lines closer to the left & right edges are the first to disappear.

 

Edit: I've personally never seen a misalignment issue on DMG screens before, but that doesn't mean it doesn't exist.

Edited by RetroSonicHero
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@RetroSonicHero is right, 30+ year old DMG line fail is common even on a barely if ever used system.  They didn't go super cheap like the asinine GLUE choice Virtual Boy had that I've had to fix a few of those on using solder, and it just I guess is the age, thinness of it, whatever, but the solder to the trace on the ribbon detaches to where the vertical line is lost (if it's horizontal you're screwed.)  A low set soldering iron, constant motion, light pressure, steady hand at a even slower pace in small back and forward motion over the line and those near by will eventually re-heat the solder and pop the line back into function.  In cases I've wanted to keep a DMG stock I've done this, usually more often than not it works.  Sometimes though, it fails, and my suspicion is the small chip on the ribbon itself failed or a line into that you can't just re-heat to fix.  If you fear the melt, do what I do with virtual boy ribbons which are equally frail, put a little flux paste(or liquid gel) in a smudge over the entire length of the cable as it works as a small heat dispersing shield from causing ribbon melt.  I used to have a slower process that was risky and could pull thin lines on a ribbon or crisp n' curl it on the VB, but when I started using the paste it never got close to that point and allowed also usually a single pass run of the lines to fix it fairly fast.  This buffer with a pass should do the same on the GB cable too.


But if the horizontal line is out, the screen is done, there is no side space to run the iron over.  If it's dim even with the contrast jacked way up, you either got a failing screen or some cap issue somewhere which needs to be ferreted out.  In either case, especially the first, I'd look into an OEM screen/board replacement or the modern one I highlighted.

 

I too have not seen a misaligned screen on a DMG either, always quite centered so that's just odd or not being shown/explained well. 

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Thank you guys for all your responses. 

 

I almost had one. It looked in perfect condition. I thought it may be too good to be real. 

Then I realized that there's a possibility that it may be a reproduction box. I hate to back out of a several of communicating but it just seems too good to be true.

Is this legit?

 

Ideas? Thoughts?

Box.jpg

Edited by guitarmas
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I couldn't say for sure if that is a repro box, but here is a boxed DMG  that is for sale locally (bi-lingual since I am in Canada) and the box looks like the same type of cut.. i.e the shape of the flaps looks the same as the picture you posted.

426533408_7173964359388937_1943744870066156976_n.jpg

Edited by Lost Monkey
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Honestly I think you wussied out.  While I do not recognize that odd "Power" insert, that shouldn't be too hard to google up if it's fake or not or from a specific region/time period.  What gets me is the generic DMG-USA on it, as to me that rings 1989 and that smells like BS to me.  The longer it was on the market it kept DMG-USA and then -1 -2 -3 -4 -6 -8... it went up quite a few revisions, so it should be something I'd call a red flag as that's not 1989 looking stuff.  The one I showed with mr silver jacket is.  The usual for years NP insert is in the post above me, that's a common one to see as well.  The rest of that one seems right.

 

I'd research it, fast, if it's not a loss already, and then pounce because it looks on the key pieces right.  It could be some genius frankenweenied something together a bit wrong, a bit overboard.

 

EDIT: I will add, and to your benefit perhaps and headache too, depending when something came out you can have a mixture of DMG-USA-# revisions, they didn't always match.  Inserts could go from one to the next, same with the box.  You could have a -2 insert and a -4 box and it would be a set.

Edited by Tanooki
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