Original Post

TheForce81’s Marketplace post asking for replacement display boards got me wondering if there’s some way to source or replace busted FFC cables for VBs.

They’re not straight FFC cables–they’re wider on the mainboard end and narrower on the display board end–so I doubt we’re going to just find direct replacements on AliExpress.

I know custom flex cables have been produced for the UltraHDMI and DCHDMI projects, which tells me it’s certainly within the realm of possibility; so, does anyone know what would be involved in getting a stock of these manufactured or how much it would cost?

5 Replies

That would be great, will save a lot more Virtual Boys

Didn’t @RunnerPack make some homebrew flex cables, or am I thinking of something else? Maybe he was working on that? Seems like they were gold colored. Maybe I’m misremembering though. Try asking him or searching his posts maybe, I say, and sorry in advance if I’m incorrect.

Those weren’t usable if I remember correctly, the connector to the mainboard was not in that design.

I did have some cables made, and they do have gold (ENIG) plating. There are some problems, but I think they can be made to work (i.e. there’s nothing wrong with the connector end).

For various reasons, I left a full copper pour on the back, but that makes them extremely stiff. One of the reasons was to make them thick enough to be tightly gripped by the VB’s connector, but it didn’t really help, so they’re kind of loose (which can probably be fixed with some type of stiffener, such as packing tape). The service I used was experimental, but if you use another service, they could probably add a proper stiffener during the process.

The main problem is that, with the pour in place, it will be difficult to connect them to a display PCB. I had the idea to try to remove the coverlay (similar to the solder mask on a normal PCB), protect the fingers on the other side, and chemically etch away the pour at just the very end.

I’m in the middle of moving house, so I don’t have any of my tools or materials handy, but I do want to get back to this project, eventually. I’ve attached my design (in Eagle) if anyone wants to have a go at fixing the problems and having some better ones made. (Donations of a few spares gladly accepted :-D)


That’s actually really awesome RunnerPack! I am always amazed by what this community has done for the Virtual Boy, as it’s easily 3x better now then it ever was during its original life.


Write a reply

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.