Wii: 480p output problems are most likely a software issue hardware issue

Update2: I talked with Nintendo today. Very friendly customer support. The customer service dude asked if I had another TV to hook it up to. Uh, no, only one 1080p, component video capable, monitor in the house. He also asked if I had tried the regular video cables as it might be a scaling issue. Nope — but I have a number of other video sources that are scaled to the same or greater degree without problem. That was that — shipping label on the way. Clearly, this is not an uncommon problem. Nintendo will cross ship if you don’t have data on the box. If you do, it needs to be shipped in to have the data transferred from the old machine to the new, presumably so that Nintendo can activate the data & games on the new box.

Update: Consensus indicates that this is a hardware issue with my Wii. Furthermore, it seems to be a not terribly uncommon failure mode. I’ll get in touch with Nintendo and update this post when I get a response. For now, Paper Mario has my attention– what an awesome game!


I ran across a post on Engdaget discusses numerous reports of problems with component video output from the Nintendo Wii.

Our Wii is connected to a 46″ Sony Bravia XBR-B2 TV (which, btw, runs Linux internally). We picked up this particular TV because it makes an absolutely gorgeous monitor for a Mac Mini (which does a decent job of scaling– not up-converting or re-sampling or whatever, as far as I know — DVDs) and, in theory, for the Wii. That, and it has a zillion inputs, including a couple of S-Video, a composite video (remember those?), and an HDMI with separate audio input.

Wii UI Dot Trash

While I haven’t [yet] experienced the black outs during Zelda or the Wii Console interface, I do see a lot of noise in the image. It is almost like the textures aren’t quite connected correctly and a handful of pixels here and there are all washed out. In Zelda, nothing is sharp and the colors are all washed out.

In the screenshot to the left, you can see a vertical column of dots in between the YES and NO buttons. This is pervasive throughout most of the standard UI presentations on the Wii.

But I think it is a software issue. Why? Because game cube games are so frighteningly bright, sharp and flawlessly displayed at 480p that I’m tempted to wear sunglasses (actually, turn down the brightness on the display). Seriously. Game cube games are just flat out gorgeous. I’m sure I could have the same experience with the game cube itself if I were to grab a set of component cables for it. After all, the Wii is just a souped up game cube with a lot of networking and wireless features tacked on.

Also, the newer games look better. Wii Play, for example, is rendered in the same style as the launch title Wii Sports. But Wii Play is sharper and has less aliasing at the edges of stuff.

Zelda ScreenCap with Render Trash

I hope that Nintendo will eventually release a software update to fix the blown pixels in the main console UI. It is unfortunate that Zelda will never be updated, but the game is so great that the visual artifacts are more annoying that a total joy killer. To the right is a screenshot of general game play (opening credits, in this case). Here is a closeup of some dot trash in part of a castle wall.

Actually, it appears that one of the most recent software updates has made the problem less prevalent in standard UI components. It may also simply be because it added a channel to the main display, thus causing a slightly layout change. Zelda isn’t any better, which isn’t terribly surprising. I do wonder if Nintendo has a mechanism for providing patches for games on disc?



72 Responses to “Wii: 480p output problems are most likely a software issue hardware issue”

  1. Chris Lord says:

    Er, actually looks very much like your Wii is over-heating – This would go with the artifacts not appearing on Wii Play and Gamecube games, as they use less CPU/GPU power and wouldn’t get the Wii so hot… Also, the type of artifacts that are appearing would correspond with an overheating GPU (similar artifacts appeared for me on my laptop due to this – replaced VGA heat-sink, no more problems). I’d suggest getting in contact with Nintendo support and obtaining a replacement. The problems other people are experiencing with 480p (including myself, unfortunately :() are nothing like this – For the affected, v-sync (or h-sync?) is lost on bright pictures, causing intermittent signal drop-out (and for me at least, making it completely unusable).

  2. bbum says:

    I will definitely contact Nintendo.

    Two issues, though.

    (1) It happens as soon as the Wii is turned on, on the main console screen. Doesn’t matter how cold the room is either (and our house is typically fairly cold)

    (2) It doesn’t happen in certain parts of the console nor in Wii Sports or Wii Play. Does the main channel display really use that much more GPU power than those particular games?

    But, thanks, I will contact Nintendo and see what they say!

  3. Aaron says:

    Hey man, I’m having the same issue with my wii, component cables, and samsung dlp.. just wanted you to let you know you’re not alone.

  4. Michael says:

    “Also, the newer games look better. Wii Play, for example, is rendered in the same style as the launch title Wii Sports. But Wii Play is sharper and has less aliasing at the edges of stuff.”

    Don’t forget, Wii Play was a launch title in most countries, so it’s not actually a “more recent” game.

  5. bbum says:

    Michael — thanks. That is interesting! Wii Play looks better than Wii Sports. I think. I need to compare the two again.

  6. Revenant says:

    I had the EXACT same problem with my Wii. I am using a 42″ LCD via component. What I noticed was that the patterns of the dots you mention are that they were specific to each game or screen on my unit. Each screen had a specific pattern of dots. That is definately a video issue, most likely video ram (which explains the specific patterns). I called Nintendo and they said that yes there was definately a problem with the console and to send it in for repair, which I have. I have not yet recieved the console back, as it was just sent off 2 days ago. I will try to post the results of the repair.

  7. David says:

    Like others, I had the exact same issue. I sent it in for repair and they just swapped it out for another. I’ve had absolutely no issues with this new one, and I’ve had it back for about a week and a half. Zelda looks much better without the artifacts. Also my old one seemed to get quite warm when playing games; I had it lying flat. Just to be safe, I’ve kept the new one in its side in the stand, and it runs a lot cooler.

  8. Brad says:

    Hi,
    I get none of the artifacts you show with my Wii on a 32″ Philips HDTV using Nintendo Component cables. I really do think your Wii is broken. I’d send it back. Good luck.

  9. Duophonix says:

    I have a Toshiba 42inch HD tv, with my wii plugged into my tv via component at 480P it looks very pixilated on Zelda and NFS carbon, Wario ware looks alright, wii sports is almost as bad as zelda,

    its clear and not blurry, but is pixilated all the same. I have my wii Horizontal.

  10. Chris Lord says:

    As has been said by Revenant, this is probably dodgy video ram, possibly caused by overheating (although if you always had this problem from day one, most likely you just got a faulty unit) – Send it in for repairs, this is definitely broken. Signal problems don’t produce artifacts like this (also, the ‘pixellation’ that Duophonix talks about isn’t a fault either, the Wii just doesn’t display at very high resolution).

  11. Huarifaifa says:

    I have my Wii connected through (a third party “Innovation”) component cables to a Samsung 23″ LCD TV (LNR238W). There are not dots nor “blackouts” while playing Zelda or Wii Sports.

    I have readed that the dots problem is caused by an overheated GPU. Seems that the GPU might get damaged permanently sometimes, so the dots appear even when the Wii is cold. Some people says that the Wii gets too hot when it’s in stand-by mode with WiiConnect24 enabled (the fan/cooler doesn’t run while in stand by). I don’t have WiiConnect24 enabled, so I can’t confirm this.

    I also heard that this problem only happens with the first batch of Wii’s sold back in November. I bought my Wii 3-4 weeks ago (comes with the new Wiimote straps), haven’t updated the firmware, and it works just fine.

  12. Revenant says:

    Good point, Huarifaifa, I do have wiiconnect24 enabled and had the unit flat, it is also a November Wii. The console, I noticed was always warm to the touch, so yeah, sounds like a problem with the release batch overheating. I wonder though, if placing the unit flat is a bad idea though. I would much rather have it flat then upright, same as my 360, which is also in for repair at the moment.. :-(. Damn shame too, I am really careful with both my consoles yet they both failed at the same time. Go figure. I did have them in an entertainment center cabinet, with a glass door that was kept slightly open when any of them were on. Now I am just gonna place them on top of it. No risk of overheating there, I would hope.

  13. Brian says:

    I was suffering from the same screen corruption as your images show. I just received my Wii-placement (man, that pun works for everything!), and it works as it should now, so I guess I can confirm that the TV and cables are not the issue, the unit itself is at fault.

    Brian

  14. Edward says:

    You have no idea how relieved I am to read this. I’m having exactly the same problem.

    It cropped up a few weeks ago in Wario Ware, and for a time was only obvious in Wario Ware. However now it is in every game. My Wii was flawless from Christmas up until the beginning of February. Honestly, I thought I’d lost my mind.

    I hope Nintendo has repaired the issue in newer Wiis. The lack of exhaustive information on this issue is a little alarming.

  15. ManZero says:

    My Wii’s in the shop, and I’m hoping to get this problem fixed.

    I attempted to document the problem with this video on YouTube (your pics show it a little better), and I got a comment from someone who said that the problem persisted after TWO repairs.

    I was wondering if you had any repairs on your Wii. If so, did they fix the problem?

  16. edmo says:

    I just sent my wii in for this too. I got it on launch day. Does anyone know if only the first batch of units suffer from this or all wii’s that have the connect24 on.

  17. bbum’s weblog-o-mat » Blog Archive » Wii: Sad day for me says:

    [...] few weeks ago, I mentioned that my Wii was having video problems. Others indicated that it was likely a hardware [...]

  18. bbum’s weblog-o-mat » Blog Archive » Wii Fixed! says:

    [...] few weeks ago, I mentioned that my Wii was barfing dots onto the display. The response indicated that this was most likely a hardware problem and that I should contact [...]

  19. Brandn821 says:

    I don’t know if this related specifically to your issues with the Wii, but on my widescreen television, I noticed that the picture is noticably “stretched” since around the objects displayed on screen, there are also these small, yet annoying pixels which blur the image making it worse then the 480i.

  20. BiscutPants says:

    I had the same issue with my Wii, component connected to a 46″ Sony LCD. Tiger Woods was really bad! Nintendo shipped me a return label, sending.

  21. enriquetnt says:

    i have a launch wii it runned perfectly until a week ago when i buyed the usb wifi, i didnt use the wii at all for the past week (the power off light changed from red to orange wich means that wiconnect24 was running during that time), yesterday when i fired up the unit there was the artifacts EVERYWHERE on EVERY GAME and in the menus also (altough the pattern changed from game to game), IT IS NOT POSSIBLE THAT IT WAS ME PLAYING because i didnt play at all, the only logical explanation is the darned wiiconnect thats sitting to close to the GPU or the GPU RAM and it slowly build up the heat until it trashed it, im out of warranty already (o well at least its the cheap one that give up on me, the 360 and PS3 have been running flawlessly and i also got both of them at launch, incredible luck whit the 360 i heard)

  22. Sad in FL says:

    My wii is dying too – I am happy to hear that I am not alone here. I have artifacts and pixels in lines and clumps on every screen- usually in the same patterns every time (specific to the game/screen) . I waited in line and got the first wii at my WalMart and this is what I get….go figure.

    To those who have shipped them out for repairs?

    Did you register it first (I have not) do you need to register it?

    How long does it take to ship the wii back?

    Do they pay shipping both ways?

    Thanks

  23. greg-annapolis says:

    enriquetnt, the hardware warranty lasts for 12 months from the date of purchase… so unless you bought your Wii in June 2006, you still have a valid warranty unless I am very confused.

  24. Stoney Mahoney says:

    Having a more complicated problem here. Had my Wii connected via component to an LG 26″ LCD. Ran perfectly for a while, then suddenly the video output failed. I can still hear the sound through the component, there’s just no picture to go with it. I’d heard there were a few problems with Wii video system failure, so initially blamed that and switched to using AV, which works fine but just isn’t as clear as component.

    I *was* talking to Nintendo about sending my Wii back, but I’ve run up against a new problem now. I borrowed my friend’s Wii and plugged that into the system to see if it worked. Exactly the same problem. So my options now are: 1) Both Wii’s are broken, 2) My TV is broken, and 3) My cable is broken.

    I am soooo glad everything is still under warranty ;) Anyone heard anything about Wii’s breaking LCD TV’s? I heard somewhere (can’t find it now) about the Wii component outputs putting out too powerful a signal, or was I just hallucinating? Cos if my Wii is capable of breaking my TV, I’m seriously not impressed.

  25. Sad in FL says:

    That is utter madness

    so is the fact that if your wi gets all beggerd theysend you a refurb if they can’t fx it

    so is the fact that if they give you a refurb when they “transfer” your MIIs it is like f you did so with you WIImote (as if you wanted to put tem on your mates WII -meaning they will be non-editable

    so is that as I understnad your WII sports save info is not transferable

    bloody hell

  26. Dave L. says:

    Hi can anyone advise. I have purchased an additonal pair of wiimotes making four in total.
    But I have two of them that just lose connectivity. Then sometimes they wont reconnect.
    Is this the remotes or the wii itself??
    Also , i can’t get the 480 HD option to activate. I have it connected to a Samsung 40 inchLCd HD
    but seem to get the best picture in 50htz setting. I also have it on a scart connector.

  27. Tek says:

    I’ve had my Wii since June 13th and it’s artifacting. It’s definitely not just an issue with release Wiis. I’m going to try turning off WiiConnect24 and see if that helps at all. Otherwise I’ll be another repair candidate :S

  28. Je says:

    Same problem here will return to the store where I bought it for services since I have extended warranty from them. Yeah it looks like GPU overheated and damaged.

  29. Soepbord says:

    @ Dave L. The Wii only will allow you the 480p setting if you have connected it with the component cable. But I think you’ve figured that out by now…

  30. Dan says:

    I’m really glad to have found this. Bought mine in late March 07, this problem just cropped up for me last week. I didn’t notice it at first, then thought it might have something to do with the way the rain rendered in Zelda (I was seeing little white dots, not totally unlike the “splashes” of rain hitting the ground in the game). Then I started noticing little black dots in Zelda. Now I’ve seen ‘em in Warioware and on a couple of the main menus. I’ve been leaving WiiConnect on – and I have noticed the box running warm. Didn’t think much of it until recently! I’ll leave WiiConnect off if I get a replacement. I thought I was going nuts!

  31. Cant say says:

    umm yeah i have that issue 2 but it is way worse than that i have it in my room on a tube tv and its really bad what should i do but i have saved alot on the wii and it stinks that it would replace it buh bye -Steve

  32. spyrius says:

    My Wii is not even two weeks old, bought Sep 12, 07, and it started showing A LOT of artifacts on the main screen, a few specks on metroid, and a few more specks on wii sports, all at the same time, today (24th). I don’t want to have to send it in and be Wii-less for several weeks :-(

  33. Sighn says:

    In the “Yes No” photo above ( http://farm1.static.flickr.com/155/394375847_ceada7e15b.jpg?v=0 ), I can see some ghosting artifacts surrounding the individual letters (Mostly visible on the left sides of the black text). I guess this is pretty normal, for the Wii, on LCD HDTV sets since no one has mentioned it, here. Wii games look clearer, to me, via RGB-Scart (Europe) on SD displays, in comparison

  34. Sighn says:

    In the “Yes No” photo above ( http://farm1.static.flickr.com/155/394375847_ceada7e15b.jpg?v=0 ), I can see some ghosting artifacts surrounding the individual letters (Mostly visible on the left sides of the black text). I guess this is pretty normal, for the Wii, on LCD HDTV sets since no one has mentioned it, here. Wii games look clearer, to me, via RGB-Scart (Europe) on SD displays, in comparison.

  35. HLG says:

    This video clearly shows what my problem is; I already asked for a pre-paid UPS label to send my wii to repair… too bad.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xdWnsw3Yckc&mode=related&search=

    BTW, Do you notice how people get moderately pissed off with an overheating issue with the Wii? Oh, but what would reactions be if it is an Xbox 360 issue (yet again)?… they would be clamoring for someone’s head already. In other words, a fault with the Wii is tolerable, a fault with any MS product is just pure Evil.

  36. bbum says:

    Yeah — I have noticed.

    There are a few issues at work:

    - the issue does not seem as widespread with the Wii as the Xbox 360. The Wii has now outsold the Xbox 360, but there are far fewer complaints around the ‘net.

    - Nintendo’s customer service seems totally on the ball. They deal with the problem quickly and without hassle. MSFT? Not so much, from what I have read.

    - The Xbox 360 gaming community seems to be a larger percentage of hardcore gamers whereas the Wii is spread across all kinds of demographics. The hardcore community — be it the Xbox, the Mac fanatics, the Linux folks, or pick-your-favorite-car — is typically much more vocal and often quite outspoken over relatively minor issues (not that overheating was minor, by any means).

  37. Alexis says:

    (Nov 5th 2007) Same thing here, i just called Nintendo today, and they are going to fix my Wii for no cost at all, the big problem is.. WHAT IF.. it happens again… and again?

    I’ve been surfing from messages boards to messages boards about this lil problem, i think there’s a LOT of people having that problem.. what i’d like is to get some replies from someone having a Wii since launch and NOT having this issue… I would feel better :)

  38. Brian says:

    Glad to have found this posting. Ive been trying to figure out where those odd pixel patterns were coming from when using the component cables with my Wii. I guess I need to send it in for repairs. The system was bought new in October 2007, so it’s not a problem only with older systems.

  39. JonEthan says:

    I just sent off an email to nintendo about this. Your screenshot there is EXACTLY what I see, and it’s more than slightly annoying. I’m hoping they’ll accept such a late arrival (I got my Wii in Dec 2006, but I didn’t have an HDTV to hook it up to till recently – ACK!) I’d REALLY like to use my all-around better widescreen display instead of my sad little SDTV. I’m thinking it’s a wise precaution to at least copy saves to an SD card before shipping it out though.

  40. Derek says:

    I thought this was just normal, but I really hate the artifacting in Mario Strikers Charged as it appears on the main soccer field all of the time. I’m going to contact Nintendo shortly and see what we can do. The Wii was purchased in April 2007.

  41. Lee says:

    Hi, im on my second wii and this has now died too!! not happy but i cant fault nintendo’s uk customer service, i called and a day later recieved my shipping note and monday my wii will be going back!!

    My brother has a launch wii, and he plays it on his portable tv,not hd and not connected to connect24 now this might be just a coincidence but his wii is perfect no problems, while i have killed 2 GPUs so far!!

    when i get my new one it off at the power switch and as far away from my subwoofer as possible!!

  42. bbum’s weblog-o-mat » Blog Archive » Wii Warning: Verify that your Miis are editable!!! says:

    [...] first Nintendo Wii was a lemon; it suffered from the video corruption issues related to GPU overheating and/or failure. Nintendo was extremely efficient at addressing the problem, not only replacing my Wii but also [...]

  43. Bundeta says:

    I have exactly the same problem with my Wii. Strangely, I bought it in late September/2007, and I had nothing for a month. Today, I turned it on to play Mario Strikers Charged, and there they were: artifacts all over the screen. I tried in Zelda, and there were even more artifacts. I changed my resolution to 480i, and the problem persists. Unfortunately, I live in Brazil and Nintendo does not have an official customer support. I will try to contact Nintendo of America to see what they can do.

    To me, this seems a fairly common hardware problem, and it gets me worried to think that they are still not fixing it.

  44. hashmang says:

    Same thing happened to me. I bought my Wii in Dec / 06. Around June 07 after not playing it for over 2 months, i turned it on and there was artifacts everywhere! On every screen, with possibly the exception of a few downloaded arcade games. I did however leave my wiiconnect24 on the entire two months that I didn’t play it. It was placed in a well ventilated area, on its side in the holder. I returned it and they sent me a brand new console and another 12 months of warranty….

    I’ve been doing research on this topic, and it would seem that the major or only reason Wii consoles are getting artifacts is from overheating. Most users aren’t placing their Wii console on the furnace or open flame, so the main culprit is leaving Wiiconnect24 on, meaning you Wii will be on standby and the light will be orange NOT red.

    I HIGHLY recommend turning OFF this feature until this issue is fully resolved. The gpu ram is millimeters away from the network card that communicates with your router, and since in Standby mode your fan doesn’t keep spinning, the constant interaction between your Wii and your router generates enough heat to permanantly FRY your RAM chips, which is what causes the artifacts.

    KEEP WIICONNECT24 OFF, and do not put the Wii console near registers, other heat generating components, ( like receivers, AMPS, TVs etc ) and keep the Wii on its side in its holder… Allow for circulated air to keep in contact with the console… These steps “should” keep your Wii from overheating.. I also think Nintendo needs to address the problem of Wiiconnect24… perhaps lowering the amount of occasions it communicates with the internet, or giving the user an option to keep the fan spinning even when in standby.. however there are after market Wii cooler systems that offer this already.

    Cheers

  45. flsomerv says:

    I got my Wii at launch, and I just sent my Wii off to Nintendo for the same artifacting problem (still under extended warranty thanks to registering my system). It just started last week for me. The first 6 months of having my Wii, I didn’t have WiiConnect24 on because I didn’t have high-speed internet. I have had the WiiConnect24 on since June and play the Wii almost every day. I notice the problem happening in Twilight Princess, Metroid Prime 3, Resident Evil: Umbrella Chronicles, RE4: Wii Edition (the worst), and in the Wii Menu.

    When I get my Wii back, I am going to keep WiiConnect24 on all the time, but kill the power to the Wii completely when I am not playing. Hopefully, when I power up the Wii, it will connect and get messages, forecasts, etc. This way I don’t have to go into the Wii settings every time I want to use WiiConnect24 to download a VC game or something. It will be there when the Wii is on (and the fan running), and unable to do anything due to lack of power when I’m not using the Wii. I have a power strip with a switch dedicated to only the Wii.

    I think this will work.

    Anybody had any problems with artifacting when WiiConnect24 is NOT on?

    Thanks.

  46. Jacopo__ITALY says:

    Hi!

    Yesterday my Wii started to show black vertical artifacts… :( and now i don’t know what i’ve to do to fix that problem!
    As a lot of gamers, i put the Wii in vertical position with its support and tranpartent plexiglass stand, but i think that the WiiConnect24 fried my GPU.
    Is the only solution to fix the Wii change with another brand new Wii?? I’ve to call the phone support….

    My problem is…when i’ll receive the new console, i’ve to turn of the WC24 or simply buy a cooling system??

    thank to everyone!

  47. flsomerv says:

    In theory, a cooling fan should fix the problem, as long as the cooling fan is running when the Wii is in stand-by mode (orange status light).

  48. flsomerv says:

    Sorry…when I say, “fix”, I mean “prevent” the problem from happening again.

  49. Jacopo__ITALY says:

    Ok thanks… i called the Nintendo Service and told me to ship the wii for the test…i think that they will change it in shot time because the artifacts are visible and more importand, boring!

    So i let you more information when i’ll send it and they ship me the brand new console…

    But…i don’t know if the WC24 is dangerous or not? what do you think?

    Thank you see u soon…

  50. jimmer says:

    ive got the same problem with artifacts are everywhere but im sure it is down to overheating but i fear it is too late for me to stop using wii connect24

  51. Jacopo__ITALY says:

    Yeah….stopping now the WC24 will not solve the problem…it’s mean that the only way to fix the artifacts is necessary to swap the Wii with another brand new…

    Only i guess if i could use the WC24 with the new console…i’m afraid for the overheating…

    Sorry for my bad English.. :(

  52. DDD'SSCEPTILE says:

    Man…… I got a Launch Wii, and just today I popped Strikers in to try and beat Diddy Kong (I got the game when it was released in USA) and then I noticed it. Tiny white specks and black dots. It’s the absolute worst on The Vice. I tried PBR, and although it’s not as bad, it’s still there.

    So, mine survived up until now. I guess I’ll have to send in my Wii, but what about my Wii Points and games? I read that my account will remain, but I’ll have to re-download and re-play all my VC games. Just downloading them was hard enough….

    This sucks! :(

  53. jomigo says:

    I bought a Wii in late Oct 2007, did nothing with it (it was a Xmas gift for my kids) until around Dec 10th ’07 when I hooked it up to make sure everything worked (so there were no surprises on the big day), registered it that same day, and turned it on for good Xmas morning. I fired it up with component cables, in 480p, with wi24connect on and connected to my wifi router. It ran in this “orange” standby state when we were not playing for 1 week then on Dec 30, 2007 we turned it on to play Wii Sports. I noticed something funny with the opening menu, but didn’t think much more about it until 5 minutes later when my daugther hit a homerun in Baseball and it looked like black snow in the blue sky! Then it became more and more prevelant as we played that day….this “pixel”/”artifact” issue had struck. We tried other games and they all had the same effect. I tried the original cables, I tried 480i with the components, I tried not in widescreen, in widescreen, i.e. I tried everything…..The menu was looking worse by the hour. I read this blog and others that night and quickly turned off wii24connect and shut the unit down for a whole day, but it didn’t help. I contacted Nintendo this moring Jan 2, 2008, and they were very polite, professional and quick to respond. The CS guy I spoke with started asking me questions like “what type of TV?” “in what mode?”, etc… and I quickly knew where he was going so I told him everything I tried and he quickly replied – “Well, we have two options” – “repair” or “replace”. They were so quick to give me the option. I took the “replace” option and they are sending a replacement out with a return label.
    I’ll let everyone know how the replacement works, but am wondering if anyone else has taken the replacement option AND then with the replacement put it back in wii24connect “on” mode. Did the problem return? Did you leave it in “on” mode and never have the problem again? I would like to say I plan on leaving it in “off” mode, but am hearing that games may soon come out that connect over the internet and will require the wii24connect to be on. Any truth to that? If so, I am undecided if I will risk it.

  54. flsomerv says:

    Hey everybody.

    I got my Wii back on Dec. 28. The invoice that came back with my Wii (no charge by the way, still under warranty) said that they had to replace the circuit board and the disc drive; however, the Wii they sent me back has a new serial number on it. My guess is that they sent me a refurbished unit. That is fine by me as the new unit works just fine. I have had a few disc read problems with the new Wii, but not consistent and most of the time it doesn’t happen at all. The artifacting problem is gone. I have a new setup for my Wii now. I have my Wii sitting on top of a 3 foot high bookcase beside my TV. I am hoping that the height will give more air circulation. Also, I have a power strip plugged into the wall that I only connect the Wii’s power to. When I am done playing the Wii, I power off the Wii, it goes into standby mode with the orange light, and then I switch off the power strip so that the orange light goes away from the front of the Wii. I still use WiiConnect24, but it can’t do anything when the power strip is off (and thus should not overheat). I can still access the forecast channel, the internet channel, the shop channel, and the Wii message board still works. My setup prevents the Wii from overheating when I’m not playing. I’ll be sure to post back here if I have any problems.

    Nintendo transferred my save data and settings over to the new unit. I did have to re-download all of the VC games I had on the old unit. Also, my Wii points remained intact. The only real thing to mention is that any Miis you created on your old unit will be available on your new unit for use, but you can’t edit them any more.

    Let me know if you have questions.
    –flsomerv

    Just for reference:

    Display: 52″ Widescreen CRT rear-projection HDTV Monitor (RCA Brand)
    Connection: 480p via Intec component cables
    Wii: WiConnect24 is on, Wireless internet connection through a USB access point on my home computer

  55. Jacopo___ITALY says:

    ——-> UPDATE!!!!!! <———

    I can trust it!

    One week ago my electric socity cut the energy with any advice…when i was playing with my “artifected” Wii…
    The day after that, THE ARTIFACTS WENT AWAY!! i’ve no more artifact since 7 days!!

    I can’t undertand it!!

    I phoned to the Nintendo Call Center and told that my “artifacted” Wii doesn’t show the problem no more!! They told me that i can send however the console to the Center but if they’ll not see the problem, they send me the same and my console!

    So, i don’t know what i’ve to do! I can play with any games without artifacts or damaged pixels…

    I know that the energy off didn’t solve the problem beacuse it’s impossible…but it’s strange!

    What do you think??

    Thanks!

  56. Ben L. says:

    I bought my wii last summer and set it up with component cables to a 37 inch lcd tv. I also enabled 24connect. In November while playing resident evil 4 wii i started noticing red and green artifacts in the video. I read that this problem is from an overheating GPU, so i called nintendo, they asked me to send the unit in for repairs. About 2 and a half weeks later, i got my repaired unit back with an invoice saying they replaced the circuit board and disk drive. I hooked up my console and found the exact same video problems, they must not have repaired/replaced the GPU. I was very upset, so i called nintendo, and they sent out an advance replacement refurb console. Once i got the new console, i transferred as much as i could and all was well. I hooked wiiconnect24 again as i did the first time. Well, a month and a half later i have an overheated GPU again. I think the lesson that i learned is that given enough time, Wiiconnect24 will fry your GPU, so you should definately turn it off! BTW, my folks have a wii that is not connected to wiiconnect and they have never had a problem. Nintendo needs to fix this issue!!!

  57. Jacopo____ITALY says:

    UPDATE #2 : On the same Wii, the artifacts came back after 1 month! :(

    The problem is that is very diffucult to see and so, impossible (i think) to send to Nintendo for some check… :(

  58. flsomerv says:

    Hey. If anyone is interested, I found out that internet access on the Wii can still be had with the Standby Connection turned off. I turned off my Standby Connection and left WiiConnect24 on. This yields a red light on the power button when the Wii is turned off–which means it should not be using the internet connection and therefore should not overheat the GPU. When set up this way (Standby off, WC24 on), I can access the internet through the Wii Shop Channel, the Internet Channel, and in games that use WC24 for online play. The only things that don’t work without the Standby Connection are the Forecast Channel and the News Channel.

    I highly recommend that people turn on WiiConnect24 for internet access, but turn off the Standby Connection. This way you can download VC games, browse the web with the Internet Channel, and use the online play in various Wii games without fear of overheating your GPU when the power is off.

    –flsomerv

  59. wgfinley says:

    Same exact problem. I run it through my Pioneer Receiver which converts everything to HDMI out to my Pioneer plasma and I have always gotten those artifacts. I always thought it was an issue with the receiver’s conversion but apparently not.

    –Guy

  60. Brad says:

    Same exact problem. I’m on my second repair for this. My first repair did fix the problem, only to have it reappear 2 months later. I DID have WiiConnect24 enabled for those 2 months.

    Future looks grim.

  61. Jacopo____ITALY says:

    Hi!
    I sent my Wii to the Nintendo Service…exactly i brought it on my hands to reduce the time of traveling…now 15 days passed and i onlty know that they recognize the problem of artifacts and told me that they are waiting for the new one from Germany (i dunno why from germany :O ).
    So i’m still waiting for news…
    But i don’t thint that i let the connection on in stand by….already one wii is died..so i didn’t want the broke another wii, if the problem is of Nintendo and not my problem. I’ll ask to the service.

    See you soon! :P

  62. Brad says:

    Still waiting for my second Wii to be returned.. I just hope they solve this stupid problem once and for all. And, I hope Nintendo reads this blog. ;-)

  63. Jacopo____ITALY says:

    Still waiting the new wii from Nintendo Service since 19th March!! :(
    I hate them! Someone sayd that they take 5 day to change the console!! I’m near 1 month!!!!!!!!

    A question… Anyone know if the send a “regenerated” console and not a “brand new” console??
    Because a friend of mine received on “old” Wii with OLD serial! He sent LEH112….. and came back a LEH101…. !! :(
    I don’t know if inside there is a new hardware as new wii at discount!

  64. bbum says:

    They very likely will ship either refurbished or new, depending on what is in stock.

    Wow! Waiting since March 19th. That is awful. I would suggest calling them and politely giving them hell for it.

  65. Jacopo____ITALY says:

    I’ll call monday! I hadn’t time today! :(

    But i’ve found a way to AVOID the overheating, forever! I found a way to mod the wii motherboard that let the fan ON in stand by mode…
    so i’ve this option:
    1 – Fan in ON when Wii work (Indipendet from WC24)
    2 – Fan in ON in STANDBY status (with WC24, if WC24 is off th fan in off)
    3 – Fan in OFF when Wii does’t have power or the light on pwr button is red

    So no more artifacts. :P

  66. Jacopo____ITALY says:

    WOW!! Finally new Wii comes to me!! after 1 month! It’s new and No artifatcs :p Today i’ll install the modify for the fan so goodbye artifacts!

  67. flsomerv says:

    Jacopo___ITALY: Good to hear you got your Wii back (finally). I have had no problems with artifacts since I got my Wii back. I have had WiiConnect24 On, but the Standby connection off. I don’t really have a need for the standby connection. The only thing you need it for is weather forecasts and news headlines. All other online stuff works with the standby connection off.

    Keep us updated as to any other artifact problems.

    –flsomerv

  68. Kim says:

    Its the component cable,i have tried using it on two different wiis,bout suffers the same now,the black dots.
    I have sent mine in for repair,so I hope tey will fix it.
    dont use component cables!

  69. Pete says:

    I had this same problem with my new Wii, using a non-Nintendo branded component cable and thought the cable was the problem or maybe electrical interference. In the end I just lived with it. After reading this I got worried I may have to replace my Wii, but turns out I don’t have to. I replaced my TV aerial cable from a cheapo one to a proper shielded cable over the weekend and that has done the trick. No more artifacts!! My Wii also runs with WC24 on standby so it wasn’t due to overheating. Mine is a newer Wii but at least for me anyway the probem doesn’t seem to be related to a faulty GPU or overheating, just interference from my TV aerial lead!

  70. Ryan says:

    Having the same problem right now. Nintendo tried to tell me it was s scaling issue and I may not have noticed it until now. Trust me I would have noticed this. I’ve had my Wii for 3 months without problem and now there are lines everywhere. I used to leave my Wii in standby with WiiConnect24 on. Just in case I won’t do that anymore. I’m unplugging it and putting it in the fridge overnight ;) Anyway I take it into the repair depot myself next week. The guy said there’s a small chance I might lose my data they’d replace my wiiware and downloaded games if that happened. However he also said even if I backup my games and Mii’s there’s a chance they may not work with the new ‘OS’ which is a pain. Oh well I’ll be happy if it just works properly.

  71. Littlelinkkid says:

    what about that “burn-in screen reduction” thing on your wii?

  72. ChuckZ says:

    This blows! I just experienced the problem. I last played my Wii over Christmas break and had no problems. I disconnected it and had it stored away until spring break when I pulled it out and started to notice the artifacts all over the screen. I thought this was an aberration so I didn’t start playing it again until my spring college semester ended a week ago. Same thing!

    I entered my serial number on Nintendo’s website for repair and it’ll cost my $75 to have it fixed since it’s out of warranty! That’s almost half the cost of a new Wii!

    Bah! My GameCube never had any problems and even my older systems still work including my Sega Genesis and Nintendo 64.

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