[3DS Teardown (4)] Prying Open Upper Chassis
Continued from [3DS Teardown (3)] Examining Main Board
After examining the main board of the Nintendo 3DS, Nikkei Electronics Teardown Squad started to tear down the upper chassis, which houses the 3D LCD panel viewable with the naked eye.
While looking over the upper chassis, we could not find any screws. Also, there did not seem to be any screws under the resin cover. So, we concluded that the cover was attached to the chassis with a double-sided tape.
We began to separate the tape by using a flat-blade screwdriver while taking care not to damage the chassis and the components inside it. The tape was stickier than we thought and more like a tape used for water-proof mobile phones (See related article). So, we ended up removing it by sheer force.
Then, we took out the 3D LCD panel module, which was analyzed later together with the touch-sensitive LCD panel module stored in the lower chassis. And we started to examine the camera module of the 3DS.
The 3DS has an improved camera function compared with the Nintendo DSi. It has two cameras on the outer side of the chassis so that 3D pictures can be taken in addition to a camera embedded in the inner side of the chassis. The pixel count of each camera is about 300,000 (640 x 480).
The camera module of the 3DS consists of three CMOS camera modules, each of which has a pixel count of 300,000. Electrically-conductive coating was applied to the flexible substrate probably for reducing noise. This structure is not much different from that of the DSi, which has a camera module consisting of two CMOS camera modules (See related article 2).
The camera module turned out to be simpler than we expected. Finally, we started to disassemble the two LCD panels stored in the upper and lower chassis.