No video: new 72 pin connector, disabled lockout pin, cleaned interior

Sorry if this is a repeat of something already posted on here; I searched for similar questions, but couldn’t find any exactly like mine.

I have a NES that isn’t outputting video. When it was given to me, it had the ‘blinking red light’ problem, so I took the following steps:

  • Installed a new 72-pin connector
  • Cleaned any visible corrosion with 91% rubbing alcohol
  • Disabled the locking chip
  • Verified that the power cable and coax cable are both working
  • Recleaned the 72-pin connections on the motherboard with 91% rubbing alcohol, doublechecked the pins’ cleanliness and positioning
  • Tried the machine on channels 3 and 4

Now, the blinking red light problem is gone, but when I turn on the system, nothing but a solid, pinkish / reddish, color appears onscreen. Once in a great while, there will be a bit of garbage onscreen (some random numbers or letters within blocks), but no matter what game I attempt to use (I have a working NES for testing games), the result is basically the same.

Has anyone else had this experience? Any thoughts on what else I could replace or fix? Thanks in advance!

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Hi! Yes, experienced it, sometimes. In most cases it's the pin connector which is causing this. You need to clean the pins on the motherboard too if you take of the pin connector. Clean it and make sure it's shiny again. Anyway, I would try another new pin connector too (just in case).


Thanks - I appreciate the suggestions! I forgot to mention that, when I cleaned the corrosion off of the motherboard, I also cleaned the pins on the motherboard (I couldn't see any signs of corrosion, but I cleaned them anyway). Will have to see about trying another connector, too!


Yes, I would try another pin connector and see where that goes. Anyway, you could also use some sandpaper or a screwdriver (I know, sounds dangerous...) to make some scratches on the pins, on the motherboard. (won't hurt the pins, but be extreme carefull! And apply this only when nothing is working and when there is NO way to fix it all!) It worked for me sometimes when there was no way out. Look out for other components on the motherboard.


Just curious - when you say to scratch the pins on the motherboard, are you saying to scratch the pins where the 72-pin connector slides on? I don't see any corrosion there at all; in fact, the connection points actually look great. Why did you scratch yours, and what did it accomplish? Thanks again!

In the meantime, I was able to verify that the power cable and coax connector for this NES unit both work perfectly, so at least I know they aren't the problem...


Yes, I meant the 72 pins on the motherboard side, where you slide the pin connector on :). When I've tried everything (and nothing worked), I just made scratches on it and hoped to clean it more on advanced level. It worked for some, but not all consoles.

To add: Make sure if you slide the pin connector on it, that the contacts make contacts with all the pins on the motherboard and that they are alligned!

You could also play with the bay a bit. Put the game in, but don't press the bay down, just put the game in, what happens then? Does it load? Or do you get the blinking red light?


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