“It’s A Go!”: Geek Gadgets That Help You Re-Energize And Revamp Your Retro Game Systems

It has finally happened--retro gaming systems are hot again. New generations of kids want to know where their gaming systems came from, and the gaming systems you played as a kid and kept in storage are now worth a lot of money as retro-gaming fascination heats up. Before you take out your thirty-year-old systems and connect them to your TV, you may need a few geek gadgets to help the old systems function properly again (even though some old systems had some notorious bugs, but these geek gadgets can fix that).

Pin Connectors

Original game systems relied on their 60- or 72-pin connectors and game cartridges to work. These systems, especially the front-loading versions, will probably exhibit connection failure after sitting in storage for so long. If you are very careful, you can open them up, disassemble them down to the pin connector, clean the pin connector, and put it back together before reconnecting and testing it.

If the system just gives you a blue screen, you will need a new pin connector, an updated version of the old model inside these game systems. Following the same steps you took to clean the pin connector already inside your old system, you can replace the connector with the new connector, which only costs about $10. Then your system should work beautifully.

Game System and Cartridge Cleaning Kits

Too many people make the mistake of blowing on the cartridge connections located in the bottoms of these old cartridges. That actually makes the problem worse, as the moisture from your breath causes the dust to stick to the metal pin connections. Fingerprints on the game system pin connectors are just as bad as blowing in the cartridges. A geek gadget that will help with cleaning your old game systems and make them run again is a retro game system and cartridge cleaning kit. They include a special cleaning fluid, cloth gloves for handling gaming components, and applicators.

Pin Converters

Some games, especially those that were manufactured and sold by the same company but made for a different system only in use in other countries, require a pin converter. This is an end-to-end converter connector that hooks up to your old system's pin connector on one end and has several fewer or several more pin connections on the opposite end. Usually the converters are 60-72 pin conversion, but you may be able to find a converter that does 72-60 pin conversions. Then you can start collecting a whole bunch of "new" games that you and your kids can play in your old game system. As one little Italian plumber would say, "It's a go!".


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