Keyboard & status LED mod

Discussion in 'Hardware Components and Aftermarket Upgrades' started by kltye, Jul 14, 2004.

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  1. kltye

    kltye Notebook Guru

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    I initially took apart my 8600 to take a look at how easy or difficult it is to do so. But I figured that since it was already dismantled, why not correct the other parts of the keyboard? :D
    Unfortunately I forgot to take pix of the mod, but rest assured it was very simple, with just a few strips of double-sided tape (one side unexposed, of course).

    Then I took a look at the centre console and realised that the LED bleeding was really annoying me, so I decided to mod it as well. Instead of using a thick piece of paper and electrical tape, I used some pieces of sponge/foam instead.

    [​IMG]



    [​IMG]

    The result: No noticeable bleeding under normal lighting;

    [​IMG]



    [​IMG]

    BUT, under totally dark conditions:
    [​IMG]



    [​IMG]

    Obviously not perfect, but was rather ad-hoc and took me 5 minutes to cut the pieces of foam, so I guess it ain't too bad ;)

    Oh yeah, and the foam is part of the padding which came with some Dell parts a few years back... :p
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 7, 2015
  2. Scalded Ape

    Scalded Ape Notebook Enthusiast

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    Pretty neat. If it weren't for my warranty, I'd open it up and stick red LEDs in there. Blue would be better, but they're usually higher voltage than the stock green ones and wouldn't light.

    ---------------------
    i8600 WSXGA+, 1.8Ghz Pentium M 745, 768MB RAM, 7200 rpm 60GB hard drive, Radeon Mobility 9600 128MB
     
  3. dell4me

    dell4me Notebook Enthusiast

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    Well on my 8600, I noticed much more LED light leakage from the adjacent one, the three LEDs between the power button and the speaker mute button. I guess it's the light pipe that has much less isolation among LED lights. Tried popping the plastic cover off but didn't know how to completely take it off.

    My company's Latitude D600 does not have that light leakage at all. I noticed there is no light pipe. All those three LEDs are seperately mounted and has its own light window, a much better design.

    By the way kltye, should the power button light up when power is on?
    Mine does not, although there is a sign of broken circle with a bar in the broken spot, which looks like there should be a light in it.

    Thanks
     
  4. kltye

    kltye Notebook Guru

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    dell4me,

    The LEDs you're referring to are the keyboard status LEDs (caps lock, numlock and scroll lock). Yes, I have quite a bad leakage on that as well, but decided not to do anything about that because I rarely use them. The flickering of the hard drive activity light requires much more "sensitivity", to me at least.

    Nope, the power button doesn't light up, unfortunately. [:(] I was hoping it did, like the Dimension desktops...

    The Latitude notebooks are of better design generally, so it wouldn't surprise me if they didn't use the "LED bars".

    Popping off the centre console is quite easy, although you have to be gentle with it. For more instructions, visit: http://spiike.shadowdragon.net/keyboardfix.htm
    I managed to pop it off using my fingers alone (don't even need long fingernails), so I would try that first.

    Good luck!
     
  5. dell4me

    dell4me Notebook Enthusiast

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    Thanks so much kltye, for the info. I will probably do nothing to those light leakage duto to too much difficulty. Just want to take a look inside there.
     
  6. kltye

    kltye Notebook Guru

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    dell4me,

    It isn't too difficult really - probably one of the easiest mods ever. But if you're not confident of doing it, then it's best you don't; otherwise you may have the most expensive paperweight in history ;)

    As for the keyboard status LEDs, there's no way the bleeding can be fixed:
    [​IMG]

    There isn't any space between them, and it's all in one piece... :(
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 6, 2015
  7. dell4me

    dell4me Notebook Enthusiast

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    By the way, one mechanical design engineer told me that the first light pipe he designed has a really bad bleeding. One LED lighted up all the others. Later he textured all surface around, except where light is going to go in. It worked pretty well.
     
  8. dell4me

    dell4me Notebook Enthusiast

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    Hi kltye,

    I finally popped the piece out and put some 3M sticky foam on each side of the light pipe. However the light still leaks and hard to tell if it's improved a bit.

    As to the keyboard status LEDs, I'll probably cut the whole piece into three pieces. I know it's hard.
     
  9. dell4me

    dell4me Notebook Enthusiast

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    Just now I did exactly what kltye did to those four LEDs (power, hard drive, charger and wireless?) using foam pieces. Excellent result. Almost no "bleeding".

    As to the status LEDs, I just used the tip of a sharp pair of sissors and cut the joint slots between two LEDs. No completely apart but deep enough to block the leakage light. In addition, I used a Sharpie type of ink pen to paint all area except those three center spots the light goes through. Also excellent result.

    These thing do not improve the performance but improve the look a lot, and cost nothing. Now I'm so happy with this 8600.
     
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