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Poco Build Guide

NOTE: While this is an easier method to build a Pocket Color, it is still a challenging project and you will need to be confident in your soldering skills.

By purchasing this kit, you are accepting all risks, costs and acknowledging that I (Natalie the Nerd) am not obligated to provide support or troubleshooting. I am not at fault if you ruin your Game Boy. 

Parts, tools
The cut
Poco board
Moving the switch

Chapters:

Parts and tools

What's included:

Poco board

Pre populated poco 1:1 board ** not including the DC board, DC jack and headphone jack

front1.png

Front

back1.png

Back

Poco flex board

Flex pcb that lines up with the poco and the vias on a Game Boy Color. NOTE: CPU E boards are not compatible with the flex.

flex.png

Front

flex1.png

Back

Pocket battery contacts

batt.png

Tools and resources you need:

- Game Boy Color in working condition

- Soldering iron

- Wire

- Desolder wick or pump

- Kapton/polyimide tape

- A dremel or craft knife

- Game Boy Pocket shell (preferably FunnyPlaying)

- Game Boy Color screen (preferably OSD)

The cut

You will need:

Either a dremel or a craft knife. The dremel cut is self explanatory, the craft knife method is done by scoring and snapping the PCB. This method is used to cut acrylic. Please watch videos on youtube to make yourself familiar with it.

NOTE: proceed at your own risk. Once again, all risks are taken on by you by following this tutorial. I am not liable for any mistakes

The cut needs to be done right under the cart slot. It is easier to cut from the front. A good guide is to draw a line right under the notches of the cart slot as shown. 

front.png

Take your time, ask a friend to help. This is the one part you can never fix. 

Preparing the poco board

The DC jack, headphone jack and DC board need to be moved from the GBC bottom you just cut to the poco board. If you would like to use an after market regulator board, you can use the GBPP or the Frogulator. 

You can now also remove the power LED now as it wont fit in the shell.

jacks.png

Stock DC board from the Game Boy Color

Headphone and DC jack from the Game Boy Color

Moving the switch

The power switch on the top half of the Game Boy Color needs to be moved. Desolder the IR LEDs, Q3 and the power switch. Don't forget to clean the power switch contacts! Use desolder wick to clean the access solder from the IR LED pads. This area needs to be as flat and clean as possible.

switch.png

Power switch

top right.png

IR LEDs, Q3

Trim or sand the two small stand offs on the bottom of the switch to make it flat/

 

Cut the [GBC Switch] board off the flex PCB. Solder the switch onto this pcb and use the adhesive on the back to place it on the top right corner as shown.

switchflex.png

Power switch flex PCB. Use adhesive to mount it. Left over adhesive from the centre of a new lens is perfect

Power switch flex PCB placement

Next, solder wires from the switch flex PCB C and 3 pads to the C and 3 pads where the power switch originally was.

Wiring guide

Flex PCB

The vias on the front of the Game Boy Color board need to be tinned in preperation for the flex PCB. If you are having trouble soldering to the vias, please watch this video.

Tin the vias in the image bellow.

vias.png

Once they are tinned, align the flex with those tinned vias and solder all the joints. Adding a touch of flux can be helpful but it is not necessary. Don't forget to solder the ground pad to the cart pin as shown below. 

flexplacement.png

Flip both boards over and align the pads from the flex to the poco bottom. Please note the placement of the flex in regards to the pads and the top battery contact. Solder the flex to the pads.

flexsolder.png

Note: this is a render. At this point all pads EXCEPT the battery should be populated

Place kapton tape over these joints to insulate and strengthen them. You must at LEAST do this to the joints on the left as the battery contact will touch this area.

kapton.png

The yellow rectangles represent kapton tape

Screen

For the easiest install, use a GBC OSD display. These displays have an onscreen display which lets you move the screen to fit into the correct area. I also recommend Funny Playing pocket shells as they require zero trimming.

Make sure to install the OSD screen wires.

PLEASE test the screen and the device out of the shell first.

Troubleshooting

Check for continuity between the following points (click the image to enlarge it).

Flex PCB
Screen
Troubleshooting
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