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DMG-01 Bivert Mod

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  • DMG-01 Bivert Mod

    What does it do? The bivert chip essentially flips the values of what to make appear on the screen. The DMG-01 had values between 0-3, with 0 being a completely clear or "off" pixel, or 3 being completely dark or "on" pixel, with 1 and 2 being in between or shades of grey respectively. By flipping the bits it turns all the white space dark and all the dark space white, essentially inverting the image, which is then flipped back to normal depending on the orientation of the included polarizer film

    Why do this mod? Doing the bivert mod will improve contrast giving the games you're playing more detail that you might have missed before, and as a side effect also gives you backlighting since it's required to make the bivert mod work.

    How hard is it to do? Honestly, I have almost no soldering skill what-so-ever beyond a fixing a few cold solder joints, and I had no issue doing the mod. Mileage may vary with removing the polarizer film from the screen, but I got mine off in about 30 seconds. Just make sure you get the right tools

    What do I need to do it?
    1. The bivert kit, obviously. It comes with the backlight, polarizer, resistor, and bivert chip. I got mine from RetroGameRepair
    2. Soldering iron
    3. Tri-wing screw driver
    4. A small phillips head screw driver
    5. A razor blade
    6. Solder
    7. Desoldering wick
    8. Q tips
    9. Isopropyl Alcohol (91% or more)
    How do I do it?
    1. First remove the tri-wing screws from the back of the Gameboy and carefully open the case
    2. Disconnect the front panel from the rear panel by removing the ribbon cable from it's plug
    3. Remove the phillips head screws from the front panel and remove it from the outer shell
    4. Remove the phillips head screws holding the ribbon cable for the screen down
    5. CAREFULLY lift the screen from it's plastic housing. You won't be able to completely remove it, and handling it too rough will cause damage to the ribbon cables
    6. Using your razor blade carefully peel away the silver polarizer from the back of the screen. It's actually 2 layers, so make sure you can behind both layers. My best advice is to do it slowly and carefully as to not cause damage
    7. Once the polarizer is removed, using some qtips and alcohol to clean up the left over glue
    8. Solder the resistor to the RED wire of the backlight. If the kit didn't come with the wires pre-soldered to the screen, do that now. Red goes on the left, black goes on the right.
    9. Solder the wires to the capacitor under the screen like this:
      Click image for larger version

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    10. Re-attach the front PCB to the rear PCB and power on the Gameboy to test everything so far
    11. Put the polarizing film in between the backlight and the screen. You might need to rotate it and flip it a few times to orient it correctly. The screen should appear dark when powered off if it is facing the right way for the bivert mod.
    12. Now remove the rear PCB from the shell
    13. Using a desoldering wick, desolder these two pins:
      Click image for larger version

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    14. While applying heat, lift the two previously mentioned pins using a razor blade, taking care not to cut yourself in the process
    15. Tin the pads on the bivert chip
    16. Slide the bivert chip under the two lifted pins aligning it like this:
      Click image for larger version

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      It's actually very important that it's lined up like this otherwise it won't work right
    17. Fill the holes with solder to make contact with the pins beneath, solder the pins you lifted earlier, and solder the ground wire so it all looks like this:
      Click image for larger version

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    18. Re-attach the ribbon cable, power it all on, and make sure everything works. At this point you may need to readjust the polarizing lens, or possibly reflow some of the solder on the bivert chip. Just be patient
    19. If everything works, screw everything back together, and close the case up. Be sure to give everything a quick cleaning with ISO first

    A few pictures of what mine looks like when completed. I went with the yellow backlight because I feel like it looks the most like an OEM DMG-01 would have looked. The pictures honestly don't do it justice. In person it looks exactly like the OEM screen just with a backlight other than the contrast is much much better.

    Click image for larger version

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  • #2
    One thing I never learned was soldering. This sort of mod scares me to death.


    • #3
      This is honestly the first significant soldering project I've done, but it gave me some confidence.
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      • #4
        I figured there would be practice soldering kits on Amazon and I was right, they're pretty cheap too. Might pick one up considering how often I work on retro tech.


        • #5
          Some of those are pretty cool looking projects. Might check a couple out.
          [IP: LOGGED]


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