The BIGGEST and Best Game Boy Color Backlight Mod??

The BIGGEST and Best Game Boy Color Backlight Mod??

Have you ever wished to upgrade your Game Boy Color's screen with a larger backlight display without requiring soldering or shell trimming? Or have you tried to install some backlight mods in the past but got frustrated with misalignment or dust getting stuck between the screen and lens? Look no further! In this video, I'll guide you through the process of enhancing your Game Boy Color with the Q5 oversized GBC IPS backlight kit, turning the original GBC screen to a vibrant, modern display with adjustable brightness settings and color modes. Plus, I'll highlight the simplicity of the installation process, making it almost plug-and-play. Read on or watch the video below to discover how you can give your Game Boy Color a new lease on life!

What You'll Need:

Aside from a working GameBoy Color system, below are some tools you'll need to complete this build. The links below are affiliate links, meaning I may receive a small commission if you purchase using the links below. 

Of course, if you are planning to solder, I assume you also have other tools such as soldering mat, safety goggles, fume extractor, kapton tape, ESD tweezers, etc. Just make sure you use proper safety protocol for the entirety of this modification. Myself and Vetro Gaming will not be liable if any harm or damage occurs in any capacity. But with all of that out of the way, lets dive right into the tutorial! 

Step 1: Disassemble your Game Boy Color

What we are really going for here is to extract the motherboard. If it would be helpful, here is a video showing how to fully disassemble a GameBoy Color. In order to do so, you'll need to unscrew the 6 tri-wing screws on the back of the shell and the 3 Phillips head screws that are mounting the motherboard to the front half of the shell. Once the screws are removed, you need to lift up on the bails on either side of the connector that is attaching the original GBC display to the motherboard to allow the ribbon cable to release and detach. With the motherboard is exposed, I would highly recommend cleaning it with some IPA. 70% or higher is most ideal. Make sure to get it on the button contacts, volume wheel, power switch etc. Congrats! You have successfully extracted the game boy motherboard and are ready to install the backlight kit! 

Step 2: The Installation Process

To install the kit, go ahead a paste the adheasive insulating films on the back of the display and driver board to prevent shorts. Next, give it a dry run by connecting the driver board to the motherboard the same way the original display ribbon cable was attached. And then connect display to the driver board with the zipper connector and pop some batteries in the back of the shell and power it on to make sure the display works. If anything is unclear about these steps, remember you can reference this video to help you visualize each step that is occurring. 

Powers on? Great! Then let's confidentially install it the rest of the way. I am assuming you already have a pre-trimmed shell where you can remove the adheasive from the back of the display and drop the display into the front of the GameBoy Color shell. Once you do that, you can reconnect everything and adhere the two touch sensors to the top of the shell and assemble your GBC back virtually the same way you disassembled it, just in reverse. 

Now, if you want to include the optional button controls, you can solder 3 wires from the Select, A and B pads on the PCB board to the corresponding test points just above the button contacts on the Game Boy motherboard. In my opinion, I would skip this step, because it adds more room to make a mistake, and you can already control the brightness, pixel modes, and color modes from the two touch sensors. The only additional feature that the button controls add is the ability to adjust the screen placement horizontally and vertically, but in my experience the display is already sufficiently aligned since it is laminated. 

 My Final Thoughts on the GBC Backlight Mod

If your goal is to have a larger GameBoy Color screen that is backlit with absolutely beautiful and vibrant colors and you don't mind using an aftermarket shell to avoid trimming and you aren't interested in soldering, then I don't think there is a better kit out there for that. Since there screen is laminated, you don't have to worry about screen misalignment or getting dust trapped behind the screen and lens and when you pair that with soldering being optional, a lot of room for error is eliminated, even for someone who is new in the retro video gaming modding community. 

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