What is the recommended procedure for preservation of consoles re: capacitors?

Discussion in 'Repair, Restoration, Conservation and Preservation' started by StriderSubzero, Jan 2, 2019.

  1. StriderSubzero

    StriderSubzero Active Member

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    Is it better to just leave things alone until they start to malfunction, or is it better to get a jump on it and just completely recap anything 20+ years old? All my consoles have original capacitors except my Nomad, and none have started malfunctioning yet. Obviously I want to prevent any damage to the board if a capacitor would start leaking, but recapping so many consoles would be a pretty big job.
     
  2. Tokimemofan

    Tokimemofan Intrepid Member

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    For now replace them in PC Engine Duos non majesco game gears etc. Remove the clock cap on original Xboxes 1.0-1.5 For others inspect for leakage and assess. Doing a capacitor replacement is not risk free, it might be better to leave a small leaker alone if it is in a non critical area and is not causing a malfunction, I see quite a few on Sega CD model during visual inspection but they rarely cause problems. I have had 2 turbo express units die completely during a capkit and I’m still trying to figure out why on one of them. On systems that don’t have major problems, using it periodically is always good looking up capacitor reforming for why. Just don’t assume that they’ll last forever, I have seen cap failure on late revision slim ps1 units.
     
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  3. rama

    rama Gutsy Member

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    That's some good advice.
    I'd add that there are different stresses to these caps, depending on what their purpose is.
    In earlier consoles, the power supply sections usually aren't very hot, so these areas tend to be unaffected.
    Later consoles with considerably more power draw need their power supply caps checked more often.

    The AV output section tends to fail a lot (see the PSOne remark, I bet it was a 220uF output cap).

    And then there's "well known" trouble makers, the XBOX clock capacitor, the PAL SNES C59 capacitor, or anything Commodore put into their Amigas (with reversed polarity :p).
    You can learn about problematic consoles if you google them + capacitor.
     
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  4. Tokimemofan

    Tokimemofan Intrepid Member

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    I believe on that ps1 it was a multiple failure but yes the 220 was one of them and yes it was an av problem
     
  5. rama

    rama Gutsy Member

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    Heh, I had a few of those PSOne as well.
    I don't think these consoles saw that much usage, so it's fair to assume their caps are of lower quality.
     
  6. Tokimemofan

    Tokimemofan Intrepid Member

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    Electrolytic capacitors age more rapidly with lack of use even with good caps. That’s may be part of why
     
  7. rama

    rama Gutsy Member

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    Yeah, that may be so, but we have a comparison: All the older PSX models from before the PSOne.

    Out of all the early capacitor failures, most have been on PSOne models.
    Considering the ~4 year age benefit for the PSOne caps, there has to be a problem with them somehow.
    It's easiest to explain with lower quality, so that's my guess.

    It is possible that the super slim design also affected it.
    There's surely more ripple on all the voltages. Heat is probably the same, as the older models had ICs that got warmer.
     
  8. supersega

    supersega I have 7 and a half PS1s in my room alone.

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    Somewhat easy to test the low quality of caps, open it up and figure out what brand those caps come from. The slim design probably means more ripple though, less room for filtering components which could negatively affect component lifespan, depending on what it is.
     
  9. Mord.Fustang

    Mord.Fustang Dauntless Member

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    "If it ain't broke, don't fix it" I think applies well here...

    Unless we're talking about things that can ruin your console, like the Xbox clock cap.
     
  10. Bad_Ad84

    Bad_Ad84 The Tick

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    Any leaking cap could ruin your console/device.
     
  11. Mord.Fustang

    Mord.Fustang Dauntless Member

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    Absolutely. That clock cap WILL leak though.

    Edit: Yeah don't remove the ones on 1.6.
     
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2019 at 11:11 PM
  12. Tokimemofan

    Tokimemofan Intrepid Member

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    Will? More like has... Every Xbox 1.0-1.5 that I have opened has leaked, haven’t seen a 1.6 leak though. Keep in mind that if you remove the cap on a 1.6 you have to replace it or the console won’t boot. Observe for now but don’t do anything unless it’s leaking on those. Problem with caps is we don’t really know which ones are going to fail.
     

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