Sega Game Gear LED Backlight Mod

One of my Game Gears had bad capacitors – so I replaced them. I then found it also had a backlight bulb. I decided to attempt the LED backlight mod. I then found it had more problems with the DC-in socket being loose. So I stripped it of it’s clean battery contacts and stuck them in my other functional Game Gear.

From two one was saved. I have donated the other to Adrian who might do something with it, or he will just let it rot under a pile of old Macs. I hope he tries to save it. Promises of tantalum capacitors instead of radial electrolytic capacitors just seems so far away.

Anyway, the mod was a success. I used 45000 MCD rated bulbs with a 62-ohm resistor (I think I calculated that wrong as there were two LEDs for one resistor – oh well). Proof of concept success! Be warned though, as much battery life as you will gain, you’ll have a wonky looking backlight unless you can get the diffusion right. Even using a diffuser from a broken LCD panel does not diffuse the light well enough!

You can see my terrible modding of the capacitors above – observe and do not copy the way I put the capacitors facing the wrong direction compared with their markings on the Game Gear motherboard… My bad!

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