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[Soldering?] Move internal memory chip

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By oles, Junior Member on 18th February 2013, 08:58 PM
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Hello lovely people.

Not long ago, my wonderful Samsung Galaxy S2 dropped dead. Before I send it in for service, I would LOVE to get the data on the internal storage back.

The phone does not get hot while charging, and nothing else whatsoever makes it show sings of life.

Is it possible to swap out the internal storage chip from the motherboard, and place it on an another identical phone, and retrieve the data that way?

Any sort of tips for businesses that would do something like this is welcome!

As you can guess, I learned to back up my stuff the hard way. My last clockwork backup was 20 days ago. Precious 20 days ago
19th February 2013, 11:12 AM |#2  
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probability = 99,99% yes ... a SD-card no matter of where it was before. have good luck
29th April 2013, 06:00 PM |#3  
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Originally Posted by psytr0nic

probability = 99,99% yes ... a SD-card no matter of where it was before. have good luck

And the deadly .01% is if the damaged part is the internal memory itself.

30th April 2013, 04:43 AM |#4  
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While emmc chip got like 20 important pads to solder (out of even hundred, when most are there being N/C) it is still BGA. A ****ass small BGA covered with glue. That would require someone really experienced with reworking such things. I do not know the prices but I would be prepared to pay even 100$ or more for such job, done right.
That from HW level. From SW+HW look: in theory there should be no trouble with properly swapped emmc ic from other phone. But you shall not forget about the said 0.01%, maybe more - reworking such chip might have influence on its content (I might be wrong) + GS2 had the emmc hardbrick bug - how did it die?

Please let us know how did it go.

Oh and btw - there must be companies working on such data recovery with proper HW to wire up to the unsoldered chip with sort of socket or other hackaround - I'd lookup there.
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2nd May 2013, 10:57 AM |#5  
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Max specified operating temperature of an eMMC is about 85 °C, there's no telling what happens above that... So whatever way you use to re-connect your eMMC, make sure it is not by soldering!
2nd May 2013, 11:08 AM |#6  
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Of course it is possible but you need highly expensive tools for it to solder of the chip. it is BGA it's not just like a transistor..
It does have hundreds of micro balls under the chip. Did you try adb shell already? Or is it really 99% dead.

You may find a company that can do it but it will cost A LOT of money. Because you need special tools for it.

Something like this

You best bet would be to try to use a heat gun on the main board. Just heat it up for a few seconds and cool it down to zero as quick as possible. Maybe the bga is cracked because it got hit by the ground when you accidentally dropped it. By heating it up you may temporarily fix this crack(will also cause slightly damage to the chips) in the soldering. So you can back it up and sent it back. I think it will void the warranty, but you have to decide for yourself what to do. Try to get back the data or get a new working main board from Samsung (if you sent the phone back they will just replace it with a new one most likely).

Bga soldering crack
2nd May 2013, 11:37 AM |#7  
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0,1% of chance .. playing with Samsung EMMC chip = bye bye phone . look around forum or elsewhere 100% of bricked is due to it .
Question : what make you confident to say that your internal memory is good ?
to remind : it is also your phone flash chip which manage boot sequence and all . don't forget it .

Max specified operating temperature of an eMMC is about 85 °C, there's no telling what happens above that.


Of course it is possible but you need highly expensive tools for it to solder of the chip

every time I tried with hot air , I removed chip with missing pads cause of glue under chip which make hard to remove .
why not to give a try ? have good luck

You best bet would be to try to use a heat gun on the main board

2nd May 2013, 11:52 AM |#8  
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Those are options you have instead of paying hundreds of euro's to a company that can recover it if it isn't the nand/emmc itself that is the dead part of the phone.

Of course i recommend him to go to a professional company and let them do recover it. Because they will do it the proper way but like i said before it cost you a lot of money.
So your best bet would be to try it yourself or just sent it back to Samsung for warranty.(by trying yourself i don't mean to solder it off because thet will not work out good. It will probably kill the chip, just try to reflow the mainboard and maybe you have luck.)

I know about glue in the corners of bga based chips in HP & Acer and other brands in laptops and such but didn't know that phones had that too.
But glue under the chip, never seen that before. And btw you cannot remove a bga soldered chip with a heatgun you need ir so that the whole surface under the chip gets loose. And you need to cover up all other components or they will get loose too or fry

Acer bga soldered chip -> glue in corners (this is not nand or emmc, its the chipset & cpu/gpu)

Irda soldering
7th October 2013, 03:43 PM |#9  
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Recovering data from snapped Galaxy s2 motherboard
Hi everyone, i really need some help

My galaxy s2 motherboard has snapped (around the long thin bit) with all other parts of the motherboard still intact. I really need to recover all of the data. The data has sentimental value and cannot be replaced. Is there any chance of recovering the data either through chip extraction and onto new board? Can the existing motherboard be fixed?

All i keep hearing is that it is too difficult, the motherboard is multi-layered and would be impossible to fix. I am reluctant to take this as an answer. Is there anybody out there that has a solution for recovering all the data? Who would i go to? who do i pay? Ive contacted samsung and they say it is impossible, when questioning them why it is impossible they state tit would cost too much and they cannot do it.

Please help. thank you.
20th January 2014, 07:23 AM |#10  
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Lightbulb EMMC reball and some other tips
Hey guys,

I know this thread is a little bit old but I'll try to give in my 2 cents maybe someone here may find it helpful

So I come from background where I do around 20 bga reballs per week, so I do know a thing or two I guess about this although my knowledge on Samsung platform is relatively low compared to an iphone logic.

So to begin with replacing the emmc chip alone is not enough as you'll need a programmer box which connects to a jtag interface which is able to rewrite the initial files like bootrom to the emmc. You can find these boxes at any prominent gsm repair shops; boxes named such as RiffBox or Z3X Samsung box are the best I found recently.

Having said that before any repair is attempted by mainly removing the flash chip it is imperative to try to resurrect the phone using these said boxes, to try to find whether or not the NAND chip is actually detected. As one may have simply installed a ROM which is not compatible with the phone and all that is required is to rewrite the bootrom files. If the NAND (basically the same name as a flash chip) fails to be detected then obviously something went wrong and it either could be the NAND is burnt inside, or the NAND has some cracks under its critical ball pins or even may be a problem that the main power management chip inside the phone is failing from supplying usually around 3V to power up the NAND.

The emmc chip at least found in a samsung is a 14 by 14 pins which only about 1/3 of it's pins are critical, the rest are dummy and do not worry if they eventually get removed, while removing the chip or cleaning the board after desoldering prior installing the new chip.

Some tips on reworking:
  • Always cover critical glued components like CPU + POP (package on package) RAM, baseband processor usually XGOLD found in Samsung.
  • Clean surrounding chip glue before attempting to remove by giving around 250C of heat and with a needle scratching the glue around
  • Do not exceed more than 350C to remove the actual chip to prevent more damage to the built in tracks inside the motherboard.

Last and not least a schematic for your phone would always be a lot of help to help you detect what voltages are missing on bootup to make sure that the boot up sequence is starting fine and also the relative points of each pin under a chip while knowing which pins are critical and which are dummies, or NC (not connected)

If you need any help you can always message me and I'll try my best to answer your questions.

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20th January 2014, 10:43 AM |#11  
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solder with care
Solder with care mate, else it will be totally gone
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