Help With PO-20 Arcade Lights


I received the PO-14, PO-16, and PO-20 for my birthday back in July. Both the PO-14 and PO-16 arrived with button issues, so I immediately returned them to the store where I bought them. I finally got them back a few days ago, and when I set them back up with the PO-20 I discovered that all 4 lights in the far left row of the Arcade no longer light up. Buttons 1, 5, 9, and 13 play sounds when pressed, but they don’t light up.

Sadly this one was purchased from Amazon Japan, and I am unable to return it to them for a repair. I am not excited about having to send it overseas to Teenage Engineering for repair, as shipping will probably cost more than the unit itself.

Has anyone else had this problem? Any idea how I might be able to get the lights back? I have replaced the batteries for fresh ones, but no luck.

I was eager to collect all 7 of these devices as they are fun, but they are about 70 dollars here in Japan, and with a 100% rate of failure so far, I am not sure that they are worth it. Is this something that others have experienced.

Apologies that my first post isn’t more positive, and thank for the help.

The PO processor drives the LED matrix directly with its output ports. In your case, most likely the output port responsible for that LED column has failed or became disconnected due to a bad solder joint. There is no fix for that, unfortunately.

@punji what about only one button unable to light only?

I would guess the LED itself has failed. You could try replacing it, but it is not easy because of the small size…

alright, thanks for your reply

Thanks punji.

As a follow up, I was able to get a replacement from Amazon after contacting Teenage Engineering. I sure wish these things held up better, but am happy that they have been respecting the warranty.

I figured out something that may work when it comes to resolving this issue on some devices.
In my case, it was the 3rd column of LED’s that was very dim on an Arcade.
Since the LED’s are connected in a matrix, I decided to try jumping one of the working LED’s right pad to the right pad of a dimly lit LED in the malfunctioning column.
This was enough to resolve it. Either it got it to latch correctly, or it heated up a cold solder joint.

The unit must have playback stopped, but the LED’s must be lit still.

Try to arrange the pattern so the offending LED’s are all lit.

The same should work for rows, but you should try the left pad first. If powered by batteries it shouldn’t fry anything. don’t mix your polarity up, left pads to left and right pads to right when jumping. Only do it momentarily; The dim ones should light up to full brightness immediately.