Nintendo N64

Here is a guide to modding the N64, covering how to open it up, remove unwanted ports, relocate the game cart port, video, powering the system, trimming the board and advice on other relevant matters about modding the system.

PLEASE NOTE – if you are interested in this section, please also see the N64 Video Guide Logs!

The section had to be broken into chunks as otherwise the .PDF’s don’t work.

WIRING GUIDE!

If you want to select between running system off mains power and batteries; here is a way to do it. If recharging, make sure the system is off first.

N64 board trimming

You can reduce the N64 motherboard along the bottom and sides with low risk, and only needing to relocate one component (the LED). All you are doing is missing the components and traces on the board and removing the grounding mostly, leaving just enough to maintain contact around the board areas. If you cut the board just under the LED contacts then obviously you don’t need to relocate that component.

There are more things you can trim off, although will need some wiring to tiny capacitors (eg the power pin area, a/v area.

You can also trim a tiny amount off the top (by the game cart) through the middle of the 12v line, only needing to connect a wire between ground on each side of the board; however, did the below to keep it simple to reduce the board a bit without making it hard. Click on images for full-size.

PDF guides

N64 modding guide – part 1

N64 modding guide – part 2

N64 modding guide – part 3

Old magazine articles of interest


Final video of my iNto64 portable N64 system!


80 Responses to “Nintendo N64”

  1. Hey I am trying to make one of these about how much did it cost you to make

  2. Hi i have no experince workng with stuff like this. will i be able to do this without any help?

  3. Hey Bacteria, i have a problem. I have every thing i need, like i made the case, hooked up the controller(tested it And it works) ect. Only thing wrong now is the cart wiring. It isnt showing up on the tv. I rewired it twice. I think i need help on where to where every thing. The project is going great its just the cart spot thats stopping me. Can you help me plz.

  4. Hey Bacteria, i have a problem. I have every thing i need, like i made the case, hooked up the controller(tested it And it works) ect. Only thing wrong now is the cart wiring. It isnt showing up on the tv. I rewired it twice. I think i need help on where to where every thing. The project is going great its just the cart spot thats stopping me

  5. Yo man you make good videos on how to make portable n64
    I have 3 questions
    1. I need to know can i make it so the n64 will charge while power is on????
    2. Is it ok to put gameshark in it and whats the best way to do it
    3. Can u send a mold over to me i live in australia how much will it cost???
    Ps u are the worlds best modder ever i respect you a lot man

  6. Have you ever thought about adding a little bit more than just your
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    Excellent blog!

  7. Very good blog! Do you have any tips and hints for aspiring
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  8. Hello, first I want to tell you that I love your work, it’s really great. I just wanted to ask how you connected the joystick of the playstation card to the controller of the Nintendo 64. I try to redo your work for a project in my electronics course. Thank you very much and good luck for the future, continued to make us dream.

    Pétry Alexandre, from Belgium

  9. [...] também já desenvolveu diversos outros consoles modificados: você já viu por aí pelo menos um Nintendo 64 de bolso feito por ele) pode visitar o fórum oficial, onde ele está documentando todo o processo. É [...]

  10. Hi Bacteria! I have a question regarding this can I use any type of charging jack to charge the batteries?

  11. Hi, Bacteria I’m new to this and I decided to make a n64 portable following your guide but when I was removing the things where the metal plate was secured to the motherboard with screws I accidentally broke the thing that is below the X1 mark on the motherboard, what can I do?, exists something that can be used as a replacement?, or I have to buy a new n64?

  12. Hi Bacteria, now I´m looking for a screen. Can I use the old Zenith Xbox screen. And what about the Gamecube screen.
    If I built in 4 controller support can I sold the 3,3 V and the negative wires directli to one port for example on port 1? I wan´t to use headjacks for connecting the ports to the console, and I think they don´t have enough wires.

  13. Hi, Bacteria. I´m new into this, and I´m writing from germany. I still don´t understand your step down regulator. You use the capacitor and the resistor, did you calculate them or did you try combination till you get 3.3 Volt. And what is the rest on the step down board. Where can I get it or how can I built one. Maybe sounds stupid for you but I habe not really idea of electronics.

  14. Hey bac i started this project but im wondering what type of gauge wire to use and what type of solder. I got 18 gauge solid and rosin core would that be ok?

  15. hey bacman, this has been a really great guide. In the specifications on another page it says to use a combined rumble and memory pak. i have found one called a tremorpak http://www.amazon.com/TremorPak-Plus-Nintendo-64/dp/B000EOEYEA Do you think that this would be acceptable? thanks for everything

  16. How many mAh do the batteries you use have?

  17. hello, i am 12 and hoping to make this! my dad is going to help me sauder and i will follow your videos to make it! Thanks for the videos, they make it much easier than some others i have seen.

  18. Hey Bacteria
    I was wondering if it’s possible to add four controllers and change between the internal and external player one with the help of a switch. I would enjoy playing with friends on tv without having to hold the console in my hands…
    thanks a lot for the awesome guide :D

  19. Would it be possible to hook up a laptop monitor to the N64 via modding wiring? i rather go for the gold on this on. 64TOP; sounds catchy….

    • No, computer monitors work with H-Sync and V-Sync. You can with DreamCast and Xbox, not N64.

    • i am gonna use a laptop lcd screen you just have to get a controller board to run the screen. the board plugs into the lcd ribbon cable and gives you the red/white/yellow plugs.

  20. Hello Bacteria. I just found amazing what you are doing, all the knowledge you have. I want to add some LEDs in the n64, so the light could came out from the logo and the vent holes. According to the wiring guide, do I connect each LED->wire-> from battery (positive) ? I know almost nothing in
    electronics and cartboards, and you could be very helpful.

    thanks and good luck wih Alpha omega project !

    Frank

  21. If I wanted to make the portable n64 with multiple controller outlets. How would I do this?

  22. Hi Bacteria I just wanted to know if I could get a Case for the portable and multi port adapter If I could get a price I would appriciate it .

  23. How do you suggest cutting holes into the case where buttons would go?

  24. ummmm……. hhey guys ummm……. you guys are asking him to do alot of things for you he has the guides what more do you want…….:|

  25. Hi I wanted to now if you could send me something that I can use to make one like an instruction book on what it takes to make one

  26. dear Bacteria , I’m Carlos and I love what you do.
    would very much appreciate you put the videos for download since I do not have much access to internet, use the litter school here and I do not have access to youtube.
    thanks for your attention …
    Note: I am Brazilian … sorry for bad english
    if possible send me by email carlinhosamf(@)hotmail.com

  27. dear Bacteria , I’m Carlos and I love what you do.
    would very much appreciate you put the videos for download since I do not have much access to internet, use the litter school here and I do not have access to youtube.
    thanks for your attention …
    Note: I am Brazilian … sorry for bad english
    if possible send me by email carlinhosamf@hotmail.com

  28. I am writing to inform you that the pdf file for the third part of the guide is incomplete and stops at trimming the motherboard. I would greatly appreciate if you could fix this and/or send me the full file. Thank you.

  29. can you give me the naration in the third video in writing please

  30. Can i use a 50 pin IDE cable for the cart slot relocation and where can i get the voltage regulator thing

  31. Sorry for the sudden bombardment of questions, however I assure you THIS is the last one.

    Would hot gluing the wire ends after soldering ensure protection? I heard that somewhere.

    • Yes, it is a good idea to hot glue wiring after soldering it to a board, it reduces the chance of catching the wire and tugging if off the board causing damage. Hot glue is easy to remove too if you need to.

  32. OK, Bacteria: you ARE a genius. I love you’re videos. But 2 quick questions:

    1. Can I use a regular gamecube joystick on my N64 portable?

    2. One of my many fears of making a portable, cutting the main board– should I or shouldn’t I?

    • Also, is a fan really necisary in a project like this?

      • Yes, otherwise the board gets hot and can cut out. Some say you only need heatsinks and holes in the casing to remove hot air and not a fan; however i’ve tried this twice and on both occasions the N64 board got hot and reset itself when the chips protection kicked in – so yes, you need a small fan!

    • Thanks for the compliment!

      You can use a regular GameCube joystick on an N64 controller as long as the N64 controller doesn’t use the official Nintendo style joystick (eg their official controllers). You can cut the main board along the paths in my guide; the safe part is the silver strips on both sides, as long as you can still see part of the silver on both sides of the board, you are fine; you can cut more off the board, but you need to know what you’re doing.

  33. so could i leve all my controller ports on and wire it all the same and it will still work.. or not??

    • Yes. The purpose of relocating parts is to make the board smaller and flatter, or to reposition something elsewhere on the board more appropriate, eg out of the way.

  34. Wow you have inspired me to make a GamecubeP i would like to know ho yo wired the controller to were some buttons are on one side and some are on the other… do you split the controller board in half? or do you wire… im not sure

    • You relocate the button contacts by mounting them in your case and wiring the button contacts back to the controller. I think I documented it in the videos; please join my forum if you haven’t already (link in sidebar) and we can help and offer advice to you on your project!

  35. Where, and how much, do you usually buy your ps1 screens?

  36. I’m curious, before I begin to even think about attempting this, can it do mulitplayer?

  37. is it possible you could enlarge the wiring diagram part for the step down regulator

  38. So for the cartridge slot relocation, when you say it is corresponding, do you mean that the pins on the left side of the cartridge slot pins go into the right side of the pins on the n64 board? but the same amount of pins from the middle? I hope you understand what im trying to tell you.

    • No, you wire each pin on the cart slot as there were originally connected on the N64 board, ie the top right pin connects to the top right cart slot pin. If you rotate the cart slot, you alter your wiring accordingly so the same pin connects to the same cart slot pin.

  39. For the memory pack wiring, how do you know where on the controller pack to wire the wires to? On the controller it is pretty easy to see where to solder the wire to, but where on the memory pack?

    • Insert memory pack, and use a multimeter to check what pin goes to where, if you can’t see them. I will be covering this on my Video Guide in due course.

      • ok awesome, a video would be nice. But are you going to show which pin goes where?

      • Yes.

        This project is taking a log time as i’m having to try and plan everything to make it as easy for someone to follow as possible.

        There are separate memory cards and rumble packs for the N64, however there are dual function packs that contain both features, I will use one of these in my project, although will cover the wiring etc of the separate units.

  40. Great guide- best one I’ve found. I am building a portable N64 myself, and I am wondering how you positioned the PCB for the controller (buttons A, B, and the C pad) inside the case. It seems to me that the they will be too far away from the front of the case if I put the PSone screen in first, then the controller board next. I’m thinking of making my own PCB for correct positioning with the case and just wiring some squishy tacts back to the original controller board.

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