NEC and webpage by Logan "Shadow" West.
Hosting graciously provided by, home of the world's top gamers for Goldeneye and Perfect Dark.

WARNING: The Nintendo GameCube is a Class I laser product. Dissasemble the Nintendo GameCube at your own risk.
Better yet, refer servicing to qualified personnel.

EDIT - In an effort to not be /.'d, this has been made a text-only page. To view the pictures as well as their explainations, check out this mirror, or google's cache. Thanks!

The Story of the NEC

Okay, well, I’ve been a devoted Nintendo fan for quite some time now. I like the old-school games a lot, as well as many of the new ones, and so I admit I have all the systems released in the US (except for GBA-SP and the... *cough* Virtual Boy). This includes both types of NES and both types of SNES; I’m a collector at heart I suppose!

I had them set up next to the television set with what seemed to be miles of RF cables to connect them all without having to unplug anything, along with webs of power cords and a jumble of systems practically stacked on top of each other.

There had to be a better way.

Being interested in electronics and having taken a few college courses recently in that same subject, I decided it would be easy enough to wire all of the systems together and stick them inside one case for the sake of convience. Plus it would be one heck of a neat accomplishment!

So I gathered my NES, SNES type 2 [See Picture], Nintendo 64, and GameCube and sat down. I bet a lot of people don't even know about the existence of a SNES type 2. SNES Type 2

Work commenced. First I had to get into the systems, easily accomplished with my special tool bits! I’m a bit of a repairman and love gadgets so I have that sort of thing.

Once that was done, I decided I’d have to take the circuit boards out and measure everything.


The classic system: the screws that hold this together are normal, Phillips head screws so it's no big deal to take apart. I then took then entire circuit board out, left the bottom metal shield on but eliminated the top one, I then placed "fillers" under the edges and screwed the board down to my box using the original holes.


I used the SNES type 2 because of the smaller profile, it's held together by the 4.5mm bit as are the rest of the Nintendo systems except for the Gameboys. I used "fillers" again to support the board and used the four main holes on the board to screw it down. The long black plastic pieces on the side are rather brittle but it's probably best to support those as well.

Nintendo 64

The 64 was a bit of a puzzle to me, lots of little pieces everywhere that one can hardly figure how to put back in the proper place etc. I just wanted the main board though, which was easy enough to pull out. I took off that long heat sink on the top, because it took up too much room. If you can size it down, it would probably be better. I also took apart the expansion pack to create a lower profile and fit in a smaller space.


All I did with the GameCube is unscrew the case and remove the top housing. The rest of it is fairly well screwed together except for that front plate which is held on by a cable and two little plastic clips. I also removed the back plastic panel, though it's not really necessary. The usual lid has a small arm that comes down and presses against two switches when the lid is closed, if the switches are not pressed down the GameCube will not operate. That was easy to bypass (just tied them down) but this means that the system can run even with the lid open, which is potentially dangerous with a Class I laser inside. Just beware that eye damage can be sustained if operated with the lid open.

Care has to be taken of course when handling circuit boards, you don’t want your oils getting everywhere and damaging the board, causing a bad connection etc.

Next I had to measure everything and decide how it would be laid out in the box, I came up with a decent design and went for it. I also decided that it would be neat to have the cartridges for the SNES and 64 plug into the side of the case. This would save room (you don’t want a monstrously long rectangular case so you can top-load everything) and would give it a neat look and feel as well. It’s ‘different’ than everything else!

I took it pretty slow on the box, I wanted to be sure to get everything just right, the circuit boards had to be mounted inside but you need to be careful that the cutout for the cartridge is just in the right spot etc. I even put the little dust protector windows on my new case!

In this picture [See Picture] I have show how I mounted everything, the PC (printed circuit) boards for the SNES and 64 are vertically mounted to ¼" boards that fit into grooves on the top and bottom, the 64 is on the left here, the SNES is on the right. Inside Back

Also shown in the same picture is the GameCube AC/DC converter and a small transformer that I was lucky enough to find that I run both the SNES and NES off of.

I was planning originally on just building my own power supply to run everything off of but I ran into a problem, the NES runs on 9 volts, the SNES on 10, the GameCube on 12, and the N64 on both 3.3 and 12! That’s four different voltage levels and while I could make a power regulator circuit that could do that, it would be infinitely easier to just go ahead and wire in the original power converters!

All power cords were broken and wired to switches (shown in a row along the top). I originally soldered wires onto the circuit boards in parallel with the original power switches so that either switch (the original or my new one) would turn the system on, but I ran into a problem with the 64, it switched on two voltages with one switch (SPDT Single Pole Double Throw) and my switch I had bought wouldn’t do that, so I had to break the line before the transformer.

Incidentally, if you can see in this picture, I took the bottom off of the N64 power supply that normally plugs into the back of the system, and also if you can see, I took the RF switch case off because it was too thick, I wanted a small, compact design! Plus it all looks neat without the cases on……should have made the outside case out of glass I guess……Oh! And as another interesting note, I wanted an Expansion pack on my N64 because it’s natural to want the best for your Ultimate Gaming System (uggy!) but again, I wanted a streamlined design so I took the case off the expansion pack. Funny, it’s a tiny little thing with one large chip on it when you get it apart…..The entire case is basically a heat sink! Speaking of which, I also took off the really large heatsink on the 64 because it was too big for one thing, and another reason was that it wouldn’t really be needed with my fan going in there.

On the SNES (pictured right) I took off the original heatsink, which was too tall and put one of my own, it was a TO-220 package so it was easy to find at Radio Shack.

The NES was easy to anchor down, I just had to make certain that I made the hole in the front large enough to get the cartridges out easily! I recently replaced the 72-pin connector inside so the thing works like a charm now! Absolutely no blinking whatsoever, EVERY game works first try every time! It’s great.

On the GameCube, I wanted the GBA player so I could play ALL the Nintendo games on this system, and I suppose I could have also left it together so that the original lid was on the GameCube but I decided to ditch that and make my own, it would look like it fit better with the rest of the design. [See Picture]. Yuck. Look at that nasty wiring job! Sheesh! Well, that's one part I could have done a lot better on! Even though it's hard to see, the wires ARE colour coded! They're just not organized well is all... Inside Top

All the my reset switches are soldered to the board via wires (green ones) in parallel with the original wires, this means that if I choose eventually, I can take these systems back out if I want and convert them back to normal, though I should doubt I’d ever WANT to do that!

It's hard to see but this is how it looks when it's all together [See Picture]. The black in there is actually the system insides, though it's hard to see here. Oooh! Zelda! GC Close-up

Then there's the N64 [See Picture], notice the slick finish, mirror-like! Conversion Varnish is great stuff. Note the Zelda again, I chose MM because it was a Gold cartridge. N64 Close-up

The SNES [See Picture] with, uh, Zelda! SNES Close-up

And last but not least, is the good old original NES [See Picture]. Above it, in that really "dark" hole is the GameBoy player slot. The camera just didn't like the dark plastic is all, it really doesn't look like an open abyss in real-life! Shown here also is the controller ports for the NES (they are connected by cables to the PCB rather than connected to the PCB (Printed Circuit Board) itself, so it was easy to place them wherever I wanted. NES Close-up

Above the NES controller ports is a knob that looks too big yes, but it has a function, it's connected to a little pole with a hook on the end that pulls on the switch on the side of the GBA player, in other words, you pull the knob to eject your GameBoy cartridges! Pretty nifty eh?!

Pictures 1, 2, 3, and 4 are views of the box from different angles. Front
Left Side
Right Side

You'll notice [See Picture] that I have all the power switches and reset buttons in an easy to access position right on top if this system, that fifth switch over on the far right is for my monster DC fan. I'm certain that I don't need a fan half this size with all the space inside this box, but you know boys, they love their fans! Truth of the matter is, it's rather noisy :) So it's probably a good thing I don't need it anyway! The knob in this picture looks really stupid I know, but it's the best I could get on short notice. The NEC

Sorry for the poor quality of some of the pictures, but at least I took some. I hope I didn’t bore you too much and hope you enjoyed taking a look at my latest project, my Nintendo Entertainment Console (or Station, I still need to think up a good acronym for it….hmmm..).

As an added note, I did send something similar to this to Nintendo of America and got a response back which said that it was very neat that I could develop something like this, but they could not host it in their magazine for the following reason: Namely that the Nintendo GameCube has a Class I laser housed inside a Class I case and if the mechanism is bypassed that prevents operation of the laser while the lid is open, then potential eye damage is probable. They didn't want to give anyone the idea to take apart a GameCube and damage their vision. I totally understand, but it was neat to get a response that wasn't automated!

Logan West

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