Original Post

Hello, I am having a weird issue here. I will try to explain as best as I can.

I recently performed the oven method to fix a display issue on the right lens of my Virtual Boy. It worked great, no more glitches. But now I am left with this weird horizontal black blurry line that seems like it is in front of the display. It moves as I move my head back and forth, seems larger and more blurry the closer I am to the unit.

It doesn’t effect game play, you can only notice it on title screens like Mario Clash and Bound High. When playing MK’s gameboy emulator you can really notice it because of the all red backgrounds.

So when fixing my virtual boy, did I do something to the lens? It is kind of annoying, but definitely not as bad as the glitchy display issue. It is playable, but I want to fix it 100%.

Any suggestions?

  • This topic was modified 7 years, 2 months ago by enfilade.
18 Replies

Thanks for the suggestion!

I actually already fixed the glitch issue I was having by doing the oven method. I followed the guide from: Project: Virtual Boy and watched a youtube video. Although a permanent solder solution would be nice in the future.

The issue I am now having is different, and I would much rather fix it myself.

I have since found this post, This thread better describes the issue I am having.

Has anyone else experienced this? I would love to know the best methods to fixing this issue, before I cause additional problems πŸ™‚

The oven method is not a fix, it is a bandaid at best. You may still be experiencing issues because of it. Your issues may also be related to how you seated the cables. I usually read that it is best to push them in all the way and then pull them out a tiny bit. Make sure you test everything before screwing it all back together. In regards to the thread you linked, your issue could also be dust on the LED array or on the mirrors. Keep in mind that you’ll be debugging on a system that is not 100% fixed. You really should highly consider getting your cables soldered.

Goodluck!

Your problem is easily solved. I have seen countless of these problems when soldering displays for members here. The problem is a tiny speck of dirt on the lens part of the display which you cannot see with the naked eye.
The best way to get rid of it, is to rub with a lint free cloth with a good amount of pressure, this solved it 99% of the times I have seen it on displays. In the 1% of the cases, it is a scratch and I haven’t found a way to fix that yet.

Hi,

I’m a newbie on here,

I have wanted to get a virtual boy since they came out, Finally last year I bagged a virtually unused one in box with everything.. and its better than I could ever had hoped for.

But I read about cable issues and I do not want to take it apart to mess with it so Recently I got from Ebay a VB with a joypad that has been totally re soldiered and re-inforced .
The chap claims it will last for along time now , it was a fairly good price and so far its great with one small issue.

I have just noticed that if I move my head eye position down the bottom of the screen goes blurry and if I move up the top goes blurry its only a small amount but I had not noticed it on my previous model , its like the viewing plastic could be distorting on the top and bottom edge like its rounded or something.

Anyone know anything ?

It could be that I have purchased a third party eyeshade and the distance or angle is different

I noticed this same thing on my own VB. When I was reinstalling the soldered cables I tested it without the red lenses in and found that it went away. I am confident that what you are describing is a distortion of the light through the red plastic of the lenses. I have since wanted to replace mine with flat glass, but put that project on the back burner due to limited free time.

So I took apart my VB and noticed the mirrors were actually pretty dusty! I was hopeful that cleaning them would solve my issue. Not so much, with a microfibre cloth wrapped around a skinny paintbrush I cleaned everything very well. The mirrors, the glass lenses on the inside, the red lenses. I fired it up, didn’t change anything. So I continued to clean some more, fired it up again and nothing changed.

TheForce81 wrote:
The problem is a tiny speck of dirt on the lens part of the display which you cannot see with the naked eye.
The best way to get rid of it, is to rub with a lint free cloth with a good amount of pressure

What lenses do you mean specifically, and how much pressure? I applied more pressure the second time I cleaned, I still didn’t get any results. I fear I might be that 1% with a scratched lens? Should I try again? any additional tips?

Lester Knight wrote:
I noticed this same thing on my own VB. When I was reinstalling the soldered cables I tested it without the red lenses in and found that it went away. I am confident that what you are describing is a distortion of the light through the red plastic of the lenses. I have since wanted to replace mine with flat glass, but put that project on the back burner due to limited free time.

I didn’t try it without the red things installed. I should have… now I have to take it apart again just to see lol

I am talking about the clear parts on the displays (the part as in my avatar), the displays you took out of the VB and fixed yourself. You can apply a lot of pressure on that without breaking anything. If only a cloth and pressure doesn’t solve it, using rubbing alcohol, or an eraser can help.

enfilade wrote:
Thanks for the suggestion!

I actually already fixed the glitch issue I was having by doing the oven method. I followed the guide from: Project: Virtual Boy and watched a youtube video. Although a permanent solder solution would be nice in the future.

The issue I am now having is different, and I would much rather fix it myself.

I have since found this post, This thread better describes the issue I am having.

Has anyone else experienced this? I would love to know the best methods to fixing this issue, before I cause additional problems πŸ™‚

Man, that oven method is not a fix. It just reseats the glue which may not even be fully seated now anyway.

You need to get those cables soldered and then mess with it. For display issues to be totally ruled out you must have the cables soldered.

LordRayken wrote:
Man, that oven method is not a fix. It just reseats the glue which may not even be fully seated now anyway.

You need to get those cables soldered and then mess with it. For display issues to be totally ruled out you must have the cables soldered.

While I agree on the fact that the oven method does not fix the glitchy display problem permanently, I know the problem he is having doesn’t have anything to do with the so called glitchy display problem.
It is an issue with the lens on the display board for sure and normally is removable by using some elbow grease!

TheForce81 wrote:
I am talking about the clear parts on the displays (the part as in my avatar), the displays you took out of the VB and fixed yourself. You can apply a lot of pressure on that without breaking anything. If only a cloth and pressure doesn’t solve it, using rubbing alcohol, or an eraser can help.

I was cleaning the wrong parts. Time to go try again! I really appreciate your help.

LordRayken wrote:
You need to get those cables soldered and then mess with it. For display issues to be totally ruled out you must have the cables soldered.

I definitely see the importance of getting the cables soldered. I hope to get this done as soon as I can afford to, as I know the oven method is just a band-aid. Like TheForce81 said, currently I am having a different issue.

Thank you everyone for all of your input. Hopefully I will be back with good news πŸ™‚

The only time I’ve seen individual black lines on displays I’ve repaired, they were actual “dead pixels” caused by individual damaged or disconnected LEDs. Of course, they were sharp, not blurry, and I was always very careful to never touch, scratch, or get any contaminants on the clear LED cover while they were in my care (and they were all very clean when they got to me).

I agree that they should be soldered, but it’s pretty easy to tell the difference between cable issues and dirt/LED issues. Cable issues almost always affect either the whole display or every nth horizontal line. The data is sent 16 pixels at a time, so one open or shorted data line is going to affect every 16th row. If one of the three BRTx lines is affected, it will change the total number of red shades visible on the screen. If it’s a timing signal, the screen will likely be either all black or solid red.

Note that the connection between the cable and the display isn’t the only source of these problems. As alluded to by Lester, the plug must also be clean, undamaged, and seated properly in the VB’s mainboard. DogP wrote about the proper procedure in this post.

TheForce81 wrote:
It is an issue with the lens on the display board for sure and normally is removable by using some elbow grease!

It worked! You are the man, you really know your stuff. No more blurry lines and no other issues either. Thanks so much for your help!

RunnerPack wrote:
DogP wrote about the proper procedure in this post.

I read the post you linked and followed those instructions when I reassembled my VB tonight. Thanks for the link.

Problem solved. Left and Right displays are both crystal clear. In case anyone else has this issue I did exactly what TheForce81 suggested above. I rubbed each lens on the displayboards with a microfibre cloth for about 3-4 minutes with good pressure. I then re-inserted the display ribbons to the VB mainboard as described in the link above. It worked perfectly, the displays now have no issues.

Thanks everyone, i’m off to play! πŸ™‚

  • This reply was modified 7 years, 2 months ago by enfilade.

Great that you were able to fix it! I have seen this on a lot of displays right out of the package it arrived in. I do not know what it caused exactly, but it is there 90% of all the cases.
The good news is that it is easily fixable!

Yeah it definitely looks like a distortion from the plastic lenses,
almost like they have a beveled top and bottom.

Its Funny i just don’t notice it as much on the other one , was just worried in case this one that had been repaired had been damaged.

Also the third party eye shade makes a slightly odd viewing angle , plus the nose bit isn’t right as theres no gap.

Also I work weekends at a huge retro-gaming and computing museum, and at a commodore book launch someone reckoned they heard on the grape vine there was going to be another flash boy run ?

You heard anything ?

The Flash Boy is in continuous production. I’d wager that as long as donor connectors are available that FB+’s will be made.

http://www.planetvb.com/modules/newbb/viewtopic.php?topic_id=4155&forum=7

Someone in the forum said they got one a couple days ago. Email Richard at that link. My experience with him was great. The FB+ is worth every penny, and I haven’t had one issue with it yet.

I realize this thread is very old but I just wanted to weigh in on this since I came across this thread while researching the issue. When my Virtual Boy arrived back from being solder fixed I noticed that it had a blurry horizontal line in my left display, much like how it’s described in this thread.

It definitely wasn’t a dead pixel, because it was blurry unlike the dead pixels I had before the solder fix. I had tried cleaning the plastic lenses from the outside and inside alike, and then sprayed compressed air onto the mirrors and the areas around them. That didn’t fix the issue, however, I later tried unscrewing the LED PCBs and spraying those with compressed air as well and that ended up fixing it!

So, in my instance, it was likely a tiny speck of dust that had gotten stuck in there while reassembling. If you notice any blurred lines then I advice taking off the bottom of the Virtual Boy and just spraying some compressed air on the mirrors and such. You might have to pray the actual PCBs like I did, but you only need to remove the two screws holding those in place to be able to lift them up and spray them. Fairly simple fix overall. Hope this information is useful to those having similar issues.

 

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