GBA SP Micro USB Charger Mod

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About: If it ain't broken, take it apart and fix it.

Intro: GBA SP Micro USB Charger Mod

I acquired a while back a working GameBoy Advance SP. Unfortunately, I didn't have a charger for it at the time. So, when the battery finally died after a week of use, I started investigating to see if there were any charger mods I could copy, but the closest I could find to what I was looking for was modding the GBA SP charger cable to so that it was USB on one end, and GBA SP charger on the other. I finally had to resort to taking the metal part off of a USB cable and plugging the plastic part into the GBA SP charging port, as it sort of fit. Some time later, a friend gave me a GBA SP charger connector, and with that I made USB cable to charge the Gameboy. Later on, I found it to be quite a hassle to have to bring 2 separate chargers every time I traveled with my GBA: A micro-USB cable for basically everything I own, and the GameBoy Advance SP charger. Another problem I had with this charger was that each time I lost the charger, the GBA SP was basically useless, as I couldn't charge it. I finally decided that I had enough of the useless charger, and decided to implement the newer Micro-USB.

Step 1: Micro-USB Port

To be able to do this whole project, you will need a Micro-USB port. You can buy one, or you can just rip it off of any electronic device that you don't need anymore. I took mine from an old Nokia C2-05, as old Nokias don't use the Micro-USB port for charging. I actually had to sacrifice another Micro-USB port, as I ruined the first one by moving it around too much. In addition to this, you will need to have some medium soldering skills, as the Micro-USB port has a minuscule pitch between contacts. If you're not too confident with soldering, take a Micro-USB extension cable, and chop off the part that you don't need.

Step 2: Wire It and Place It

I chose to place my Micro-USB port between the two ports on the GBA SP, because I couldn't find anywhere else to put it. I wired Pin 6 from the GBA SP port to Pin 5 on the Micro-USB port, and Pin 3 to Pin 1. To make a hole for the Micro-USB port, you need to use a dremel and make a thin and tall hole on each side of the casing.

Step 3: Final Result

Test the port before closing it up. Once closed, test it out again. This mod leaves both charging ports functional, so you can charge with either the original charger, or the Micro-USB charger, although you musn't put both chargers at once as you'll create a short circuit.

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    27 Discussions

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    Palladiun

    Question 6 months ago on Step 3

    I really like the project! I'm going to do the same thing to my own gba sp, but my only worry/question is does the battery get damaged over time since the micro usb isnt the same rating as the normal gba sp charging port?

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    Kamen RiderTPJMOR

    Reply 1 year ago

    Where is the positive and negative of USB Port to the Proprietary Cahrging Port of GBA

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    azqxwce

    1 year ago

    What gauge wire are you using to connect the ports?

    1 reply
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    PJMORazqxwce

    Reply 1 year ago

    I'm not too sure. I source by small wires from old usb cables mainly, and some from video cables like vga and dvi. I've never actually checked their diameter.

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    Kamen RiderT

    1 year ago

    Can I take off the link port to put thevMicro USB in it, just to sa ve some space, and get rid of that link port thing?

    2 replies
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    Kamen RiderTPJMOR

    Reply 1 year ago

    Thank you. :) Now I only just need a soldering iron, or I could just heat up a metal on our gas stove.

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    Pinche_Agus

    1 year ago

    It's possible to do this with an audio jack? Like do both mods, so I can charge it with Micro USB, and plug headphones at the same time.

    2 replies
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    Pinche_AgusPinche_Agus

    Reply 1 year ago

    Prob I wasn't very clear, not so good at english; so, I want to have 4 ports: Normal charger, MicroUSB charger, link port(?) and an audio jack port. My gba sp battery is very old, so I need to charge it often.

    I want to use MicroUSB at the same time that I plug headphones on the modded jack port. Is it possible? I heard that you can't do this because the audio and the ac-in needs one of the pins at the same time.

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    PJMORPinche_Agus

    Reply 1 year ago

    Yes, you can. Pin 2 would be the left audio channel, pin 4 the right audio channel, and pin 5 is the audio ground (or common, same thing). You'll have to use pin 1 as a headphone detect, although some people have reported that it doesn't work with pin 1, and instead with pin 5. And yes, the charging cable does share a cable with the audio jack but that should be no problem whatsoever. The only problem that I think you may encounter is space restriction. The GBA SP is quite small on he inside.

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    KennyC45

    1 year ago

    How did you get the wires and port to fit with the battery where it is?

    2 replies
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    KennyC45KennyC45

    Reply 1 year ago

    Im having trouble fitting the case back together

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    PJMORKennyC45

    Reply 1 year ago

    I took very thin and short cables which took a minimum of space, and with the dremel I had to cut away part of the shell so that it would allow the cables to pass. I made sure the cables did not go under the battery.

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    techboy411

    3 years ago on Introduction

    Would this allow the system to be charged via MicroUSB and have a audio adapter in the regular charger jack?

    4 replies
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    PJMORtechboy411

    Reply 3 years ago on Introduction

    Of course. This does not interfere with anything on the port. So, as long as you don't use both ports for charging at the same time, everything will work.

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    PJMORChaslasherH

    Reply 2 years ago

    As there are 3DS USB charging cables available on the market, I believe you can do this mod to your 3DS without any problems. I haven't personally tried this though, as I don't own a DS.

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    ChaslasherHPJMOR

    Reply 2 years ago

    I just wanted to ask because it would mean that I would one type of cable for every device, simple ocd crap lol