Refurbished X68000 No Longer Powering On

Started by darkwitchclaire, April 17, 2023, 07:30:53 AM

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Having been a fan of the X68000 for a long time, I finally had a chance to get one this year and ordered a refurbished first gen (CZ-600ce) from Japan. Everything worked great for a few weeks, was able to hook up my BlueSCSI and play games just fine.

A few days ago, I plugged it in and got no response when pressing the switch in the back, no LED or anything. Didn't hear or smell anything unusual so I don't think it's the capacitors but is it something else with the power supply? If so I might cut my losses and either splurge on a refurbished model with a PicoPSU already in it or find a cheap enough ACE/Expert/Super to put one in myself since it seems more complicated to take apart the first gen model compared to those.


When you say refurbished,I wonder what they have actually done?
Removed the dust ;) or replaced caps etc?

I have the same model as you. I think the side covers come off just like the Expert and Super etc.

Yes to remove the PSU there is a screw from the other side you need to remove (way too over engineered), so you need to take out the motherboard from right hand tower. Again not sure if Ace etc also has this.

PicoPSU will fit in the internal PSU 'box' no problem. I am in UK so use 250V.

The other issue is battery leakage, but that will still make power light come on. Sounds like it is PSU related.


Yeah look into the mattsoft pico psu and replace the existing one, all the PSUs are ticking time bombs unless fully addressed.


The computer was listed as having all capacitors replaced, new SRAM battery, and floppy drives cleaned.

My main worry is breaking something else when taking it apart but I guess that's always a risk with repairing old machines, still I'd hate to have that other work go to waste.


Would this would work? The PicoPSU is out of stock and this wouldn't require any assembly anyway.


I can't believe no one has yet to design a drop in internal CPU replacement for the X68000 yet. It has been a long while since I popped my open, but my impression is that the X68000 actually has quite modest power requirements. The pico solutions are so ugly and inelegant, with their reliance on an external laptop charger. I was in contact with a guy a few years back that designed drop-in replacement PSU's for the FM Towns Marty designed around these neat Traco power converters units. Basically they are a tiny self contained through hole power supply squares that take AC power and output DC at specified voltage and amperage. They come in all sorts of configurations, with three such modules (+5, +12, -12V) someone with the patience and knowhow could design a modern drop-in replacement for all X68000 models.

Only problem is that those units are made for industrial applications and are expensive, but seeing as how the pico is being sold for 18000 yen and the current market price for a working X68000 I'd say they are more or less a viable alternative.

My FM Towns tower has a dead PSU which I've been thinking of designing a replacement for using those tracos for a few years now, but could not be arsed since I have another working Towns. But if my beloved X68000 Compact XIV should ever give me PSU trouble I'd likely pull out the old finger and finally get to work.


The mattsoft designed PCBs will fit into the PSU case on most models, but they do still fit a PicoPSU internally.  AFAIK there's an AC 120-240 to DC 12v converter internally so you can use an appropriate AC cable and the switch, etc.

There's probably something from Meanwell or similar that'll provide the needed voltages that could also fit internally but it'll probably be more expensive anyway and you'd need to design the PCB.

Personally I'm not bothered about the laptop adapter and I've set it up such that it looks fairly tidy, there's just the plug socket on the outside and nothing to see with the cover on.