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retroupgrade
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Gameboy Pocket and GBA SP USB Rechargeable Mods

by retroupgrade Fri Dec 25, 2015 1:39 pm

It's a very simple mod, but it took a while to carve-up the case. The slot for the USB connector ended up being ugly because the charging board edge goes right up to the edge of the casing AAAND I may have rushed it a bit. :lol: It would definitely look nicer if I used a solid color GBP. Let me know if you guys are interested in seeing my other mods/experiments! :D
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Last edited by retroupgrade on Sat Jul 23, 2016 1:21 pm, edited 2 times in total.
strobed_vision
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Re: Gameboy Pocket USB Rechargeable Mod

by strobed_vision Sat Feb 20, 2016 4:20 pm

Loving the mod,
seriously thinking of doing this myself to one of my mgb's but I haven't got a clue where to start in regards to battery type, voltage or what recharge circuit to use!
Did you regulate the voltage some how or have you run it direct from battery?
Awesome mod!!
retroupgrade
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Re: Gameboy Pocket USB Rechargeable Mod

by retroupgrade Sat Feb 27, 2016 11:37 pm

strobed_vision wrote:Loving the mod,
seriously thinking of doing this myself to one of my mgb's but I haven't got a clue where to start in regards to battery type, voltage or what recharge circuit to use!
Did you regulate the voltage some how or have you run it direct from battery?
Awesome mod!!


Thanks for the compliment! It's very simple. I wonder why the rechargeable mod isn't more popular, actually. You need three ingredients:

1) A TP4056 based charger board (with usb port if you want usb charging. Any 5 volt source will do, though.) ($1-$5)
2) A 3.7V Li-Po or Li-Ion battery, of course. ($3-$10)
3) A diode, such as 1N4148 or similar ($.10-$5)

The diode is placed between the positive battery terminal and the positive BAT point on the charger or Game Boy positive battery terminal. The purpose of the diode is to drop the voltage about .6 volts and prevent any "reverse charge" from reaching the battery during Game Boy use. Li-Ion/Li-Po batteries are typically 3.7 volts, and with the diode, it comes down to a more friendly 2.8 - 3.1 volts. Game Boys usually run from 3 volts (1.5V + 1.5V, for each AA or AAA). It's possible to run the Game Boy directly from the Li-Ion battery, but it is neither safe nor practical for long-term use.
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avrame
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Re: Gameboy Pocket USB Rechargeable Mod

by avrame Fri Mar 04, 2016 12:06 pm

What type of Li-Po are you using? Any recommendations from Amazon or mAh's?
If you aren't having a good time, why are you playing?
retroupgrade
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Re: Gameboy Pocket USB Rechargeable Mod

by retroupgrade Mon Mar 07, 2016 10:33 pm

avrame wrote:What type of Li-Po are you using? Any recommendations from Amazon or mAh's?


Good question! I believe the batteries I'm using are Li-Ion although Li-Poly are very similar. I personally order a handful of GBA SP replacement batteries at a time from eBay and I usually find them for $1-$4 each.

You can use any Li-Ion or Li-Poly you want as long as the output is 3.7V, they fit inside the Game Boy (my preference), and you have a suitable charger like a TP4056 based charger board. I also get those from eBay from Chinese sellers (because it's the lowest cost).

In terms of mah rating, anything will do--it only determines the battery life. However, I don't think it's reasonable to go below 800mah because the batteries are already so cheap at $3 or so, and they fit nicely in the Game Boy Pocket/Color/Advance/Original. The larger the mah rating, the larger the battery. If you are lucky enough to find a large but thin battery, I've seen people fit batteries up to 2400mah in a Game Boy Pocket, but I think batteries above 2000mah are not cost effective.

To find the battery I used, search "GBA replacement battery" or similar on Amazon or eBay. If you're not sure what they look like, search on Google Images to be sure you're getting the expected battery.

PRO TIP! Nintendo DSi replacement batteries are even smaller and easier to work with, but can cost a little more.
rockpin
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Re: Gameboy Pocket USB Rechargeable Mod

by rockpin Thu Jun 23, 2016 6:19 am

This is a great mod.I'm thinking of doing it.
With it, can you charge and play at the same time?

Thanks.
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bacteria
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Re: Gameboy Pocket USB Rechargeable Mod

by bacteria Thu Jun 23, 2016 10:28 am

Li-ion batteries are like tube batteries, like longer versions in looks to AA cells and in a metal casing, Li-po cells are flat and malleable, so be careful not to dent or rupture them or they can literally explode or certainly catch fire violently. Both Li-ion and li-po cells are similar material - Lithium - how they are packaged is different.

Ensure you have a battery protection circuit in with the battery or it could explode if charging or get damaged when draining charge and explode when then charged.

Also, yes you can use a diode (rated for higher than the voltage used and also amperage of system, which is tiny with a GB of course) however ensure you charge the battery from its terminals and not after the diode or could give the protection circuit a false reading and explode the battery. A Li-ion or Li-po cell although rated 3.7v will charge up to 4.2v and before cutting off get down to 3.4v. That means in effect if the diode is reducing voltage by 0.6v then it is operating 3.8v - 2.8v which is fine of course.

A lot of portables use Li-po cells, and sometimes they explode, especially if they get damaged, near a heat source like a microprocessor; also sometimes they swell for no reason (and if enclosed in a system you can't see that) - then they are liable to explode and cause a fire.

That's why I use Li-ion cells not Li-po cells. Safer by virtue of being encased in a metal casing. Yes, Li-po cells are flat so nicer, however i've had some that i've not even used for months, when I find them again they are swollen (so have to be disposed of).

Just my 2 cents.
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retroupgrade
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Re: Gameboy Pocket USB Rechargeable Mod

by retroupgrade Sat Jul 23, 2016 1:05 pm

Very good advice from bacteria!

I've also added a micro USB to my GBA SP. It was very simple compared to the GB Pocket because it's already setup to be rechargeable.
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