Intro: N64 LED Using 5V Bulbs
DO NOT ATTEMPT WITHOUT SOME KNOWLEDGE OF ELECTRICAL SAFETY
NEVER WORK ON CONSOLE OR BARE MOTHERBOARD WHILE PLUGGED IN
also the lights are VERY BRIGHT
when you turn this on for the first time overt your eyes like they did in Monty Python when God spoke...or just squint...you've been warned.
This is my 2nd instructable on the N64. No real rocket science here just some soldering and routing wires. I do dig the 5V LEDs the are BRIGHT! The factory led is a 3v so this is a jump. Have played it for a good period of time after the mod and it doesn't affect gameplay at all.
You will need a gamebit socket from eBay
Hot glue gun
20g wire or something small diameter
Ability to take apart a N64
Dr Pepper and tacos
And some free time
Step 1: You Did What?
Cut out the red LED and do not solder in another. Put tape or your choice of protector over this area of the board.
Step 2: Cut It Out!
Use the dremmel to completely open up the area behind the N64 emblem. The emblem should pop off by using a small screwdriver from behind, if not hold a hair drier to it for a while and it will come out eventually. This one took a while but finally came off. Also be sure to peel the glue backing from the back side of the emblem.
Step 3: Power Source
Moving right along...go ahead and attach your lead wires(4" or so) to the mobo. The bottom side of the board is labeled 5V and G
Step 4: Get Lights and a Map
You can buy LED strips or singles just make sure they are the voltage you need, for this we are 5V. I bought several singles and a few of these tiny blank boards to mount them. I use my dremmel and a tiny cut-off wheel to cut the size pieces I need. One board did the whole console. Next figure out the route of wiring and how much wire/LED you'll need. The wiring is parallel and will not loop so figure the start stop point and route wires accordingly.
Step 5: Solder and Glue
Here is my mobo, I did this as an assembly. The last N64 I did (white one) was done a little more crude and has wires taped to the board and the case. In this case they are all fixed to the board so removal is simple if I need to get inside again or do another mod. All the lights are mounted by hot glue gun in places where they will shine through the vents, controller ports and emblem.
You see I put one where the original red one was then one that towers over it to illuminate the emblem. The clear housing for the power LED had to be massaged a little for the new one. They are the same size but mine sat foreword a little more than the original.
Step 6: Holy Crap
Should be what you say when you plug in the board to test your lights for the first time. If all is good then yay, if not check your wires.
There are bright spots like I looked at the sun now as I type this so please take take and know these are very bright.
Step 7: Fit the Case
Wires by the jumper pack and controller ports will require routing up and over the ports to clear the jumper pack housing on the top case half. Hopefully everything is good and you can start reassembly. For me it's time to prime and paint! My case is less than perfect but it's very solid so I'm going to paint it while it's apart....
Will add a step when it's all done. Since I have my white one this one will most likely end up on eBay.