Retro Modding urges you to treat this LCD upgrade as if you are replacing the LCD in your mobile phone. We expect you to take great care, and assume liability if something is to become damaged during the installation. We expect you to have pre-existing soldering knowledge, and experience working with fragile electronics. Please kindly note that we can not accept any returns or offer refunds on IPS kits that have the protective film removed, and were not tested and installed in the “exploded” view shown in Step 1: Preliminary Setup.
This guide will walk you through the installation of Funny Playing's V2 IPS LCD Kit for the GBA in a centered position.
This kit varies from the V1 in several ways. There are some critical differences in the installation, and we insist reading through this installation guide, even if you have experience installing the V1.
- Funny Playing IPS LCD Kit
- LCD Centering Bracket (Included with the Retro Modding kit linked above)
- Retro Modding IPS Glass Lens
- Pre-trimmed GBA Shell for IPS display
- Soldering Iron & Solder (Optional: for brightness controller)
- Rotary Tool (Optional: For DIY trimming)
- Razor blade
- Stranded 30 AWG insulated wire
- Wire strippers
- Compressed air (optional)
- Game Boy Advance
- Tri-Wing & Philips head screwdrivers
- Double-sided tape
- Kapton tape (recommended)
Step 1: Preliminary Setup
Disassemble your GBA.
Put your GBA's LCD aside as we will be completely replacing this part.
The IPS display has a fragile ribbon cable on it which can get damaged during the installation. To assist in troubleshooting issues, we insist that the unit is tested in an "exploded" view. This assures that there is no strain on the ribbon cable, and that there is low risk of a short-circuit, which can help diagnose any potential issues.
40 pin exploded view:
Cable bend for the 32 pin connector:
32 pin exploded view:
Step 2: LCD Assembly
Apply a strip of double-sided tape along the ribbon cable.
Adhere the adapter to the LCD, keeping the top, bottom, and right side as flush as possible.
Apply a strip of double-sided tape along the bracket.
Secure the LCD to the bracket.
Step 3: Shell trimming
We suggest purchasing a GBA shell with the IPS trimming option. These are professionally machined parts and provide a more accurate cut than what is achievable by hand.
Be cautious not to cut the plastic wall offering support for the trigger button.
Before & After:
Step 4: Securing the LCD
Peel the back side of the LCD cushioning foam and apply it to the GBA shell.
Peel off the front side of the protective film.
Remove the protective film from the LCD
Carefully secure the LCD to the shell. Be very cautious and do not use excessive force. The LCD is very fragile, and can break if forced into a shell that was not sufficiently trimmed.
Spray the display with compressed air to rid it of any debris, and apply the lens.
Step 5: Soldering the Brightness Controller [Optional]
Solder wires to the "SEL" "L" and "R" pads. (ignore the GND pad.)
Now is a good opportunity to insulate the ribbon cable with Kapton tape.
Solder the "SEL" wire to TP2 on the GBA mother board.
Solder the "R" and "L" pads to the switch's pins on the back of the motherboard.
Step 6: Finalization
Insert the ribbon cable in to the GBA's socket and press the two tabs on the connector in to secure it.
If you have not done so already, the ribbon cable's components should be insulated with Kapton tape.
You can now reassemble the GBA. If you installed the brightness controller wires, be cautious not to crush them when closing the shell.
To test the brightness controller, hold select and toggle the brightness using the "L" and "R" triggers.
Congratulations! If all went well, you have now successfully modded your GBA!