Replace Super Puzzle Fighter arcade CRT power supply?
March 30, 2012 2:16 PM   Subscribe

I love my CPS2 JAMMA Super Puzzle Fighter arcade cabinet. The power supply for the CRT spontaneously caught fire (I think it's the CRT's PS). Help me save it!

I cut power to it and everything seems fine, if smoky. It doesn't seem to burn more when I turn it back on, and the audio works, indicating that the game itself is unharmed. I bet the CRT is fine too and it's just some capacitor in this 16-year-old obviously-handmade circuit bundle that reached the end of a long road.

  • A close-up of the back of the CRT and the specific ganglia of electronics that caught fire. The flames were in that big black bit on the right.
  • A different perspective on the same parts.
  • Some perfectly healthy if dusty bits that did not catch fire.
Options as I see them:
  • Replace just the CRT's power supply - just have to source a supplier for something that would work. Can anyone recommend a supplier or know which parts I want? There seem to be a lot of options.
  • Replace the CRT and power supply - a bit more involved. Even better would be to replace the CRT with a much lighter LCD! Is this feasible? Not sure if the video signal would be compatible. Anyone done this?
Anything I'm missing? Thanks!
posted by doteatop to Technology (7 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Hmm, well I am no expert on any of this stuff, so...

I would be extremely careful replacing the power supply. CRTs can carry a charge for weeks after being unplugged.

I think replacing the CRT is probably your best bet. Jrok seems to have video encoders to convert the RGB to NTSC. seems to also have these.

Anyway, it is probably worth asking this question on a Jamma specialty forum because I bet you could get way better information than I am able to provide.
posted by satori_movement at 3:38 PM on March 30, 2012

Thanks! Yeah, I thought about posting on klov, just more comfortable on mefi I guess. Okay, so, ordered a video converter. Nice find.

Maybe that means the remaining challenges are:
* pull the existing stuff out without getting hurt, and
* finding and installing an appropriately sized LCD

If so, that doesn't seem too bad.
posted by doteatop at 4:13 PM on March 30, 2012

That thick red lead coming out of what I presume is the bit that caught fire supplies the CRT's final anode. It's a low current, very high voltage (typically well over 25,000 volts) power supply. The final anode inside the CRT, the CRT glass and the earthed coating on the outside of the CRT form a capacitor, and that's exactly the bit that stays charged to many thousands of volts even after the power is off. You DO NOT WANT that capacitor to dump its charge through you.

I would personally not fool about with that part of a CRT circuit. I would leave it to somebody with experience in doing that i.e. a TV repair person.
posted by flabdablet at 5:54 PM on March 30, 2012

Important cautionary words.

One way or another though replacing the CRT with a LCD seems the way to go.
posted by doteatop at 7:58 PM on March 30, 2012

If you live in a decent sized city, you can probably find someone that repairs CRTs-- find whoever supplies or runs arcade games, and I bet you can find someone to fix it for not too much money (less than the cost of an LCD). Maybe try checking or posting to Craigslist?

Good tubes are a commodity, since hardly anybody is making them anymore. An LCD will look different, which may or may not be an issue for you.

Cautions about voltage here are right, but monitors can safely be discharged (involves sticking a grounded screwdriver under the suction cup). If you end-up pulling the monitor, you'll want to do that. It's a little scary, but if you search the Internet you can find good tutorials.

The only other thing worth noting: CRTs are HEAVY. It doesn't help that they're mounted in cabinets at an awkward height. Pulling them can be a one man job, but if you've never done it before, I'd definitely recommend having someone around while you take it out. You'll pretty silly if you crack the neck trying to get it out to get the power supply repaired.
posted by cosmonaught at 8:12 PM on March 30, 2012

sticking a grounded screwdriver under the suction cup

Grounded via a 1MΩ resistor. 25kV makes a hell of a bang if you let it.
posted by flabdablet at 3:07 AM on March 31, 2012

Yeah I'm dubious about that part. Still not committed to any method of dealing with the CRT until until I have the whole video kit (converter already ordered, need to find an appropriate LCD), I don't need to make any decisions. Meanwhile the cabinet is lurking safely in the basement.
posted by doteatop at 10:09 AM on March 31, 2012

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