Feeds

Bum tweak kills Gameboy screens

Don't touch that dial!

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

High performance access to file storage

An unfortunate high profile news post on pocket.ign.com may have led to a number of Americans permanently damaging their GameBoy Advance consoles.

Complaints arose recently that the display was a bit dark, and inquisitive fiddlers on the IGN message boards put their thinking hats on trying to work out how to overcome this.

The discovery came a couple of days ago when one poster uncovered a little adjustment hole at the back of the console which, when tweaked, seemed to act as a contrast control. IGN then documented the tweak for its readers, which seemed like a fair thing to do.

But in looking at it now in retrospect, they’re probably kicking themselves for not double and triple-checking with Nintendo on the subject, because as revealed to the American gaming news service today, the "contrast control" is actually a bit more sinister.

"A positive and negative voltage controls Liquid Crystal Displays (LCDs)," the worrying Nintendo statement begins. "The 'contrast control' that you are referring to is actually a flicker control. The adjustment is used to synchronize the positive and negative voltages. If these voltages are out of adjustment then the LCD will no longer respond correctly. The result will be an excess charge built up in the liquid crystal and permanently damage the LCD. The excessive charge gives the appearance of a brighter screen because the liquid crystal is not reacting properly to the voltages applied. When the adjustment of the voltages is correct the changing polarities will not allow a charge to build up, which prolongs the LCD life."

Er, crikey. So in effect, IGN have been giving their readers details on how to permanently damage the LCD by building up excess charge in the liquid crystal. If the adjustment is correct, Nintendo say, you're safe. So in other words, don't bleedin' well touch it.

Although IGN have now pointed this out to their readers, new GBA owners strolling through the archives who stumble upon the original item may get more than they bargain for. Our advice? Buy a wormlight. Better spend a fiver on one of them than damage your GBA irreparably because you can't find a decent light source.

© Eurogamer. All rights reserved.

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Dropbox defends fantastically badly timed Condoleezza Rice appointment
'Nothing is going to change with Dr. Rice's appointment,' file sharer promises
Audio fans, prepare yourself for the Second Coming ... of Blu-ray
High Fidelity Pure Audio – is this what your ears have been waiting for?
Did a date calculation bug just cost hard-up Co-op Bank £110m?
And just when Brit banking org needs £400m to stay afloat
MtGox chief Karpelès refuses to come to US for g-men's grilling
Bitcoin baron says he needs another lawyer for FinCEN chat
Zucker punched: Google gobbles Facebook-wooed Titan Aerospace
Up, up and away in my beautiful balloon flying broadband-bot
Apple DOMINATES the Valley, rakes in more profit than Google, HP, Intel, Cisco COMBINED
Cook & Co. also pay more taxes than those four worthies PLUS eBay and Oracle
It may be ILLEGAL to run Heartbleed health checks – IT lawyer
Do the right thing, earn up to 10 years in clink
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
SANS - Survey on application security programs
In this whitepaper learn about the state of application security programs and practices of 488 surveyed respondents, and discover how mature and effective these programs are.