Hello everyone, so this morning I decided to pull put my Virtual Boy and play, I havent played it in years. Just discovered it wont turn on and I cant imagine why. It’s been a long time since I have used it but I’ve had it stored in a sealed container in a safe place so cant imagine whats going on. Was hoping to get some trouble shooting tips and suggestions on where I should start with diagnosis of the problem. Its been some time but I seem to recall I should be able to hear a slight hum when the power is on, I dont hear that and with the volume all the way up I am not getting audio either.
So I tried a multi meter on my controller and the controller is providing power, about 5.5volts or so. Where do I go from here? Open it up? What could possibly have gone wrong? Does anyone offer repair services?
You should definitely open it up and see if there’s any life at all in the unit when you try to power it on. It’s pretty difficult to pin down problems from the outside, and the Virtual Boy is a finnicky system with a lot of moving parts.
I did succeed in getting it to turn on once. A little more in for, I opened up the console this last weekend, discovered it was getting power periodically judging by the little internal red LED. The system wasn’t turning on but the light was. I noticed also that the light didnt always turn on. I tried multiple times inserting and removing the cartidge from the console. I sat down and inserted/removed a cartidge about 50+ times and the console turned on once, which makes me think perhaps this is an oxidation issue on the pins/contacts. I have not been able to get the console to turn on again with other games(or even the same game). I did also recheck the voltage out of the controller with a differe t set of batteries and was getting much closer to 9v like I might expect with 6 1.5v batteries. So I am still currently thinking its an issue at the cartidge connector. Any tips for cleaning the contacts?
If you need to remove oxidation on the contacts, there are specific electrical contact cleaners that you can try to use.
I have used a product called “Deoxit” in the past (though not on any Virtual Boys), but its whole job is to de-oxidize electrical connections.
I hope you are able to clean up the cartridge port pins and solve your problem, I’ve never heard of a bad cart connection preventing a Virtual Boy from booting. Be prepared to keep hunting down the problem(s) if it still isn’t booting even after you clean things out.