Atari Lynx Hardware Mods

The Atari Lynx Console was already impressive enough when it came out back in 1989, but that did not mean that it couldn't be improved upon. In the years since there have been numerous mods, updates and replacements created for the handheld. This page attempts to capture them all.


Atari Lynx Upgrades

These kits and items will enhance and upgrade your Lynx and will make the gaming experience so much better than on the original stock console.

SD/Flash Cartridges

Want to play ROMs from an SD card on Atari Lynx? Something like an Everdrive?

See our comparison of the available cartridges here - SD/Flash Carts for Atari Lynx.

Modern LCD Screen Replacements

Original Lynx screens were washed out and difficult to use without having to turn the Lynx at various angles. Modern replacement screens make games on your Lynx look crystal clear. VGA output options are also available.

See our comparison of the two LCD replacement mods here - LCD Replacement Mod Kits for Atari Lynx.

NiMh Charge Kit

Add the ability to charge NiMh AA batteries directly in your Atari Lynx while playing games (or when your Lynx is off). This kit will enable your Lynx to use NiMh cells (Eneloop, Varta, etc) which you never have to remove from the console again.

Replacements for these parts are available from K-Retro.

Speaker Improvements

The original Atari Lynx model 2 speaker is much quieter compared to that of the model 1. This replacement speaker will give you more volume, more bass and more clarity too. A worthy upgrade!

Lynx 1 speaker replacement are also available - these are not louder than the original, but sometimes you just need a fresh speaker.

Both speakers are available from K-Retro.

Overclock for CPU

Some games on the Lynx run very slow e.g. Hard Drivin', this mod speeds up the Lynx by 50% so that these games become more playable. It is also possible to use different crystals like a 20Mhz crystal to get a 25% boost.

See instruction here.


Atari Lynx Repair and Replacement Parts

These kits and items will revive your Lynx from the dead or will extend your Lynx's life so you can enjoy gaming on it for a long time to come.

Capacitor Replacements / Recapping

Electrolytic capacitors tend to fail after some time (either drying out or leaking electrolyte fluid and corroding the motherboard). It is always a great idea to replace these capacitors with new, fresh ones. This is a must-do mod for any Lynx console, especially if it is showing issues with the display or has low speaker volume.

Capacitor kits for Lynx 1 and 2 as well as capacitor maps are available from K-Retro.

MOSFET/Zenner Diode Voltage Regulator Rebuild

Lynx's voltage regulation circuit is notoriously bad and prone to failure, leading to burned out CPUs and an unusable console. This is the #1 must do replacement for any Lynx console.

It's also possible that the 3906 transistors from the power circuit can fail and those should be replaced at the same time.

Occasionally the U6 14069U hex inverter can fail too, leading to the on/off buttons not working on your Lynx.

Replacements for these parts are available from K-Retro.

Cartridge I/O Circuit Replacements

If your Lynx always shows the 'INSERT GAME' screen and can't read any cartridge, its I/O ICs may be bad. This is a replacement kit for the two ICs responsible for reading data off the cart.

Replacements for these parts are available from K-Retro.

LED Backlight

The standard CFL tube used as a backlight in the Lynx is a battery hog, replacing it with an LED alternative will double the battery life and will reduce operating temperature of the console. This kit retains the original screen. It is designed for the Sega Gamegear but will work on an Atari Lynx.

This is available from Hand-Held Legend.

Lynx Model I Repaint / Paint Chipping Touch Up

Lynx Model I is prone to getting paint chips which makes it look quite nasty and aged. This mod is to restore the Lynx to it's new condition my using a mixture of paints to cover the affected areas.

See this forum post for details.

New Replacement Parts

Some parts just need to be replaced. These are new designs and/or reproductions of the original Lynx parts. Ranging from button pads and key membrane to rubber grips, battery doors, volume and brightness wheels, power and ComLynx sockets to replacement screen lenses and rear stickers.

Find these parts at K-Retro.



External Joystick/Joypad Controller

Sometimes an external controller is very handy to use with a Lynx, especially if you're streaming or recording your gaming via VGA (provided with the IPS screen upgrades).

There are two options available, using an SMS (Sega Master System) controller or a SNES (Super Nintendo) controller.

Find kits for these at K-Retro.



ComLynx to USB Cable

This mod is aimed at developers who want to connect their Lynx to a computer for testing multiplayer capable games.

See build instruction here.

Remove Cartridge without Power Down

This mod is aimed at developers - used to bootstrap with one cartridge and switch to another while the Lynx is still on. The first cartridge has the bootstrapping program which is loaded.

Simply connect pins 31 and 33 on the cartridge slot inside the Lynx to make this work.

Wireless ComLynx Prototype

This is an attempt to make the ComLynx work over wireless I/R. Read more details here.

Forum Thread


Did we get something wrong or you have something to contribute? Please tell us about it!

We're looking for content editors and maintainers, if you want to help us out, let us know!