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Burnt Smell, Flashing Backlight, Non-Functional


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Hello all. I'm a little heart broken- hopefully the problem can be resolved.

 

I have a MP 2000 upgraded (by Apple) to a 2100. I use it almost exclusively at my desk plugged into AC power (original 9W adapter) with the batteries out (AA cage). I was recently away for 3 months and left it completely unpowered. I came home, plugged in AC, and all was well.

 

I got home today to find the green back light flashing repeatedly. It won't turn on and a reset doesn't do anything either. I unplugged it and then noticed a smell, a very very stinky noxious scent that is stronger from the top (with the PCMCIA cards removed) near the IR port and AC in. It is also warm. Quite warm considering its been unplugged for nearly 2 hours.

 

I imagine its a capacitor that has blown? I appreciate any help as well as advice on how to fix it, if possible. Thank you.

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I've never repaired a Newton, but I have repaired several burnt capacitors in other devices.

 

If that is indeed what is wrong and things are as dramatic as you say there is a good chance its a simple question of opening the unit up and looking for the damaged component by either a raised top portion, or looking for burn patterns. However simply identifying the component is the easy part, actually extracting it can be more tricky especially with what is I imagine SMD components.

 

I suggest you take pics as you go and post them here, and then look for further insight.

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Thank you, directive0.

 

I am completely unfamiliar with hardware to a certain level. When you say SMD components, what are those exactly? I am dubious about my ability to exact anything, but then again I have yet to peek inside and see what the board looks like.

 

You mentioned you have repaired burnt capacitors before. Are they replaceable in Newtons? Aside from adding RAM or swapping a CPU, I am not experienced in anything more technical.

 

I have never taken a Newton apart before, but I when I find the guide I will check out your suggestion of burn patterns or raised top portions.

 

What do you suppose caused it? Just age?

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SMD means that the component is soldered on the surface of the board, as opposed to having wires that go through the board and are soldered on the other side. SMD things are typically smaller and require more experience and more precise tools to replace.

 

Capacitors do go bad with age, even if you don't use them. They go bad faster the more you use them and the higher the temperature. It also depends on the quality and type of capacitor. Electrolytic capacitors are prone (or even doomed) to failure and can be replaced with Tantalum capacitors, which don't typically ever fail - at least not that I've seen.

 

It is always unknown if/how an item can be repaired when something inside blows up like that, so if you can get it apart and take some photos, we can at least explain what could be done to possibly fix it, and maybe someone here will offer to repair it for you.

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