Quantcast Guide to disassembling the G53JW and installing second hard drive

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  1. #1
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    Default Guide to disassembling the G53JW and installing second hard drive

    Hi guys, so I thought I'd post a few pics of dis-assembly to access the hard drive bays, RAM, and wireless since its a bit more complicated that your average laptop. A few of these things was pure guessing and trial and error for me so hopefully this saves you some time. This also shows how I installed a SSD without a bracket.

    Tools needed: Regular size flathead screwdriver and a MINI phillips screwdriver. Mini ones are the type you'd use to open a watch. You'll find it at the hardware section of any store.

    You can click any image below for a bigger version.

    1. Unplug the laptop and remove the battery

    2. Open it up and use your flathead screwdriver to lightly put some pressure in the 4 small slots on the top of the keyboard til they come loose:


    3. Once you get a couple of them removed gently lift the keyboard on one side as you do the last two and the keyboard will pop out:


    4. Do not pull the keyboard straight off. Gently flip it upside down as the cables are still attached. Once upside down you can remove the two ribbon cables. These come out easier if you pop out the little plastic bits that are holding them in. For the big one its the white pieces of plastic that you can slide slightly to the left with your fingernail or screwdriver to loosen the ribbon cable. For the tiny one, its the two tiny bits of black plastic which you slide out to the left as well. See the final steps for closeups of these areas when I re-attach the ribbon cables:


    5. If all you are doing is adding an extra DIMM of ram, you are done! No need to unplug keyboard. Flip open the piece of black plastic and you will find an empty dimm slot. This slot should be free on all G53JW's that come with 6GB or less. 8GB ones are probably 4x2 GB and filled already. If you need to get to the other RAM, wireless card, optical drive, or hard drives carry on:


    6. Here is with the keyboard removed. You are now going to want to remove the touchpad ribbon cable that you can see at the bottom:


    7. The only screw you need to removed here is the one on the bottom right here. Once its remove put your screwdriver in the hole next to the screw hole and with a bit of force pull it to the left. This unlocks the touchpad/palm rest to come off. Note you can see other screws removed near it, this is not needed. That was trial and error on my part:


    8. The touchpad is held in place with a few plastic clips but you should be able to get a grip on it on the top side once its unlocked. Pry it off (don't forget to unplug the touchpad ribbon first!) and the whole palmrest with touchpad will come off. Now you need to remove the circled screws to unlock the bottom panel. I'm sure there are a couple screws here that maybe don't need to be removed but nothing else came loose by just removing all these. I recommend lining up the screws on a table in the same order that they came out in so you can easily replace them later as some are smaller than others.


    9. Flip the laptop over (recommend putting something soft beneath it like a cloth mousepad or something to avoid any possibility of scratches. The back panel should come off relatively easy. The side you unscrewed should lift off while the other side is clipped in sort of like a battery cover.


    10. Here it is with the one hard drive caddy removed and 2 open bays. You can also see the two ram slots available here, wireless card in top left and one of the screws on the right will release the optical drive for removal but I haven't touched the wireless or optical drive yet:


    11. Here I am re-installing the hard drives. You'll notice I moved the mechanical drive to the other bay with the bracket and on the right side I have installed a SSD without a bracket. I did this so the SSD would be in SATA port #1. Since the SSD has no moving parts it's a lot safer to use without a bracket. I would not recommend a mechanical drive without a bracket. As you can see by the red circle I put a few layers of cardboard so its a snug fit and doesn't come unplugged or move around:


    12. Now I cut out some cardboard of equal thickness (well slightly less thick) than the black foam on top of the other hard drive bracket. This is to further keep the drive secure and prevent it from moving. The bottom panel should keep it in place with pressure alone but I put a small piece of double sided tape between the drive and cardboard so it can't move when I was putting the panel back on. Do this stuff at your own risk of course. One of the many dealers on these boards can do a more pro job of course:


    13. Put the back plate back onto the bottom. You will have to apply a bit of force to snap it in. Flip the laptop over again and replace all the screws around the touchpad to secure the bottom panel. You will notice the top middle of the palmrest has some flex even after you've snapped it in... don't worry! It's because you haven't locked it back in place yet. Look again at step 7 and this time slide the lock back to the right and then screw it in again. The palm rest is now secure.

    Now you will need to re-attach the ribbons. Put the keyboard upside down on the touchpad like it was when you first removed it. Like I said earlier, you need to slightly pop out some plastic bits to be able to re-insert them. For the big keyboard one its the white plastic piece and for the small keyboard ribbon and the touchpad ribbon its the two little black bits on either side of the place you insert it. Insert the ribbon and push the plastic back in to lock the ribbon in place. See the two below images for closeups:


    14. The keyboard snaps back into place very easily. Just apply light pressure to the 4 areas you originally pried it out at until you don't hear any more clicks/snaps.

    15. If you installed a second hard drive go into the BIOS under the boot menu and under "Hard drive BBS priorities" switch your new drive to number one then make sure it's in the boot list as seen here with my Intel SSD. I always recommend a clean install in these cases but if you want to clone your old C: drive you can do that but just make sure you delete the old C: system partition or else windows will probably be profoundly confused when you boot up.



    The simpler way is to just clean install Windows 7. The driver disk provided by Asus is very simple to use. You simply check everything you want to install and it does them all and auto-reboots and resumes until its done. However since Asus doesn't include a copy of Windows 7 itself, you can get a perfectly legitimate ISO copy of Home Premium 64 bit right from Microsoft. Then just use your CD key from the bottom of your laptop to install it. You can find links to the ISO here: Windows 7 ISO x86 and x64 Official Direct Download Links (Ultimate, Professional and Home Premium) My Digital Life - use the digital river link. Very fast. Make sure its home premium as thats what your cd key is for.

    Hope this helps someone!
    Last edited by bendok; 16th November 2010 at 08:51 AM.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Guide to disassembling the G53JW and installing second hard drive

    Great guide!
    Thanks, I'll be using this once I get my G53.

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    Default Re: Guide to disassembling the G53JW and installing second hard drive

    Very useful info. +1 rep.

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    Default Re: Guide to disassembling the G53JW and installing second hard drive

    Nice guide! Thanks!

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    Default Re: Guide to disassembling the G53JW and installing second hard drive

    Excellent detailed guide...appreciate it. I have subscribed to the thread for future reference once I get my G53. +1

    One question...what is the brand of memory installed in your laptop?
    Last edited by JediTim; 16th November 2010 at 11:53 AM. Reason: added question

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    Default Re: Guide to disassembling the G53JW and installing second hard drive

    Quote Originally Posted by JediTim View Post
    Excellent detailed guide...appreciate it. I have subscribed to the thread for future reference once I get my G53. +1

    One question...what is the brand of memory installed in your laptop?
    I forgot to check the factory installed memory, but my model (G53JW-XR1) only came with 4GB so I added a 4GB DIMM to the memory slot under the keyboard (you can see it in step 5) to make it 8GB total. The one I added was a Kingston DDR3-1333 which has Hynix chips on it. All I know about the ones pre-installed is that they were ddr3-1333. This kingston stuff was cheap though and works fine.

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    Default Re: Guide to disassembling the G53JW and installing second hard drive

    I agree, excellent and clear guide. Thanks!

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Guide to disassembling the G53JW and installing second hard drive

    I hate to pour water on what is an innovative solution, but have you considered the heat generated by the hard drive, and how enclosing it with cardboard might affect not only the cardboard itself, but also the overall heat dissipation from that hard drive?
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    Default Re: Guide to disassembling the G53JW and installing second hard drive

    Quote Originally Posted by paladin44 View Post
    I hate to pour water on what is an innovative solution, but have you considered the heat generated by the hard drive, and how enclosing it with cardboard might affect not only the cardboard itself, but also the overall heat dissipation from that hard drive?
    Thankfully the SSD generates almost no heat, which is why I recommended NOT doing this with a mechanical drive which will. SSD's use like 0.5 watts idle and only 1-2 watts under load.

    Truth be told even mechanical laptop drives generate such little heat but I would also be concerned about vibrations without the bracket. The other good thing is how isolated the hard drive areas are from the hot components.

    But like i said this is all at ones own risk. The main part of the guide is how to open this beast. If i can ever get my hands on a bracket separately i would.

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    Default Re: Guide to disassembling the G53JW and installing second hard drive

    Great guide! I was wondering however if you knew how to reach the second sodimm slot on the top of the mobo. If i'm not mistaken it is located beside just to ward the palmrest mirrored to the accessible one. Having some trouble trying to figure out if I have to remove the mobo to access it or if that top metal plate can be removed.

 

 
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