Arcade Repair Tips - Troubleshooting Monitors With Michael

Uploaded by varcadegames on 22.06.2009

Hi, and welcome back to the Arcade Repair Tips Video Series. Today we're going to talk
a little bit about monitors and I have a special guest today. It's Michael. Michael repairs
monitors with us and has been teaching us a lot of things. I'd just like to pick his
brain a little bit today. Michael, how long have you been working on
monitors and things like that?
Michael: About 17 years. TVs, electronics, monitors.
Tim: What's the difference between, say, a TV and an arcade monitor?
Michael: Not a whole lot. You've got the basic circuits there. A TV has a tuner and so forth,
but an arcade monitor is pretty much the same.
Tim: So if I learn how to repair an arcade monitor, then I could probably work on my
TV or even something like that? What about even a newer TV?
Michael: Even a newer TV. The circuitry is pretty much the same.
Tim: So what all is involved? We've got a chassis here that we pulled out of a Ms Pacman.
What can you tell me about it? For some of the guys watching online here, what are some
of these parts? What may be some areas should they avoid or some common trouble areas?
Michael: Well, depending on the problem you have...
Tim: Lets just say that my monitor is totally dead. Won't come on at all. Where would you
Michael: Well, you'd start in the power supply and that's usually where you find the power
cord. Where that goes into the circuit, usually that's your primary power supply right there.
Usually there's going to be a fuse in there by it, that's probably the first thing you
need to check.
Tim: Yeah, so here's the fuse right here. So I could put my meter on continuity and
check the fuse and the fuse is bad. Wow, I solved the problem. We're done, right? Just
replace the fuse?
Michael: That's not right. There's a reason why the fuse blew. You need to check other
surrounding components and make sure they're not shorted to ground. Usually that's what
happens when the fuse blows.
Tim: What is this area? I know that we deal a lot with this and we've talked about being
careful around this guy. What's this thing?
Michael: That's your high voltage lead from your high voltage transformer, better known
as the flyback. This puts out, depending on the size of the chassis, anywhere from 20
to 35,000 volts.
Tim: Alright, so I've heard a lot of people and I've had to replace a lot of flybacks.
How would you know if a flyback was bad?
Michael: Well, there's a transistor that powers the flyback, better known as a hot, people
call it. If that is shorted, a bad flyback is a good cause for that to short. You can
check that also with just a standard meter.
Tim: I've heard a flyback make a hissing noise. Is that normal?
Michael: It can. If the casing is cracked, the high voltage will actually leak out and
go to ground.
Tim: So if you hear a hissing noise, look out. Watch for cracks. I've seen them be cracked
all the way down the side and stuff so good time to replace your flyback.
Michael: A good time. They're cheap and you don't want to mess around with that.
Tim: Ok, you know I hear all the time people say, "Just put a cap kit, put a cap kit."
How do you know if it needs a cap kit or not?
Michael: A lot of times, you'll have washed out colors. You'll have vertical drop. You'll
have lines across the top of the screen. Maybe it will start to turn on, sometimes it won't.
Just random stuff. It's intermittent usually.
Tim: How can I tell if caps are bad? These all look fine to me.
Michael: Sometimes the electrolytic capacitors will swell and bulge. The top of them will
actually bulge out. Or you'll see fluid around the bottom of them. That's a good indication
that they're bad.
Tim: I know that we buy these cap kits from like Bob Roberts or somebody for arcade monitors.
What I found is, yeah, you can see them. They're kind of swollen. Sometimes you can tell, sometimes
it's hard to tell though. You can't always go by your eyes, right?
Michael: That's correct.
Tim: Ok, well I know a lot of times what we do is if that one cap is going bad and the
monitor is already 20-something years old, is it a good time to replace them all?
Michael: You might as well. Caps are cheap. It doesn't take long to put them on. That's
just less trouble you'll have in the future.
Tim: I notice a lot of the monitors that we come across will have just a horizontal line
on there. What's going on when that happens?
Michael: You lost your vertical. There's an IC that powers the vertical on monitors and
TVs. That chip itself could be bad or you could have lost the power to that chip. You
just have to get a standard meter and check your voltage and go from there.
Tim: What are some of the tools that you use? Because you've repaired a lot of monitors.
When I first did this, I thought, "Man, I'm going to need like $5000 worth of equipment
to be able to be a good monitor repair guy." Is that what you have?
Michael: No, you don't need that at all. I believe, like you already covered, a good
Weller soldering station and a regular multimeter will do pretty much everything that you need.
An ESR meter, some way to check your capacitors. You can get an ESR meter and do it in the
circuit. Some meters have a capacitor checker but you have to take it out of circuit. That's
basically about the three only tools you need.
Tim: Well, we're going to shoot some more videos soon and actually show you some hands
on. We just wanted to talk a little bit about it. We don't want you guys to be scared of
them but by all means, take all the safety precautions. Know what you're doing. If you're
not sure, send it to us. We'll fix it for you. Anyway, thank you for watching. Stay
tuned for more videos.