Nintendo's upgraded version of the Nintendo 3DS. It features bigger screens, longer battery life, and a better design.

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Should I replace my SD card port?

Hi there!

I've had my Nintendo 3DS XL for a few years already (since May 5, 2014) and recently I wanted to update animal crossing new leaf. Anyway, every time I try to put a verified SD card into the system... It doesn't work. So I can't update my games, or take pictures! I'm starting to think something is wrong with the pins inside the system, because I've tried tons of SD cards and though they work on the computer, they don't work in my system.

How could I go about replacing the SD card port? Should I do this? I can't find any tutorials, maybe I'm not looking hard enough. I found info on the back of the system: This is the 3DS/XL from 2010/2011 model SPR-001... Hopefully that helps.



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@jinnypeaches, It must be the SD reader IC. You'll have to get a new motherboard. iFixit sells it, but you can probably get one cheaper on eBay. One last thing to try: Format it as fat32, with an allocation unit size of 32 KB. Hope this helps. You might want to consider getting a new one if you can't find any cheaper motherboards.

Nintendo 3DS XL Motherboard

Nintendo 3DS XL Motherboard Image


Nintendo 3DS XL Motherboard


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Have you tried formatting as fat32 or just fat? Use the SD card association's SD card formatting tool to do so. Windows file explorer works too.

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Hi, I did that but still no luck. I reformatted to FAT and FAT32 but neither worked. The system doesn't recognize the card at all. Actually, the SD card worked for a long time before. Thinking back there was something stuck in the pins of the slot that I managed to get out so I'm wondering if that damaged it. Anyway the card I tried was a Lexar 4GB multi use SDHC, it's not listed as an official card on the nintendo site. But it worked fine before?


The official card thing is just advertisement. SD card brands pay Nintendo to call them official. Do you have any larger cards? 8 GB+?


Oh, I see! I do have a 16 GB card. I'll move the files and then reformat and get back to you.


Hi, I reformatted my 16GB SD to FAT32 but no luck again. I did the quick reformat and then I did a longer reformat... Not sure what else to do. Other than the SD card not reading, the system is perfectly fine.


Do you have a camera you can format it in? Preferably Sony. Format it in the camera then format it on the PC. Did I mention you shouldn't hot swap the SD card?


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