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UL30 Backlit Keyboard Mod

Discussion in 'Asus' started by Soulsaber, Mar 8, 2010.

  1. Soulsaber

    Soulsaber Notebook Evangelist

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    [​IMG]

    Welcome to the awesome UL30 backlit keyboard thread! Here you will find a mod that really shouldn't be here and should of come built in with the notebook... but oh well. Here's a semi-walkthrough of what I did.
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    Extra Tips/Modifications
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    Materials
    • Backlit Keyboard - KEYBOARD 302mm BACKLIGHT (US)
      ***IF NOT IN STOCK, look up "U80 keyboard" "backlit" "302mm" (a combination of these terms) on eBay, you should find a backlit one for sale***
      The size must be 302mm, it seems to be there standard size for 12" to 14" so it shouldn't be an issue.
    • Thin Gauge Wire - something around or less than 28-30 AWG
    • Tape - to hold things down to make it easier
    • Patience/dexterity - no need to rush ;D
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    Starting off... here is the monsterous box that it came in. At least there was no chance of damage haha...

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    Some pics between the normal keyboard and the backlit keyboard. Notice that the backlit keyboard is of much higher quality, looks and feels smoother and (imo) quieter too! The backlit keyboard is also slightly thicker by 1 or 2 mm, but I haven't seen any marks on my screen or anything so it doesn't seem to be a problem.

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    Firstly, open up the keyboard by using a screwdriver to pry the clips holding the keyboard down. Try to be gentle, as they can break. (stole your pic Convoluted =D)

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    The keyboard clip thing is covered by tape. Take that off and pull the clip upwards to remove it. Here's a pic comparing the two keyboard connections. BE VERY CAREFUL, as this little orange thing is really fragile, and can rip easily, as I have done in the 2nd pic. I did manage to fix it, but it's not fun to do so.

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    You will (obviously) notice that there is an extra yellow flat flex cable. This is needed to power the LED backlight. Here are the points that you need to know of.

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    You can solder or wire glue some thin gauge wire onto these and have them around 5" long. Connect these to the points shown below by solder or wire glue or however you want to do it. Just ignore all that tape and stuff, I was just testing to make sure my LED's actually worked before I had it in place. UPDATE: I have added other pics of my revised mod, with a variety of different +5V sources you can choose from, and in the other pic you can see my actual point that I used. I choose this because it is really wide and much easier to access.

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    Connect that, tape it up to prevent shorts and stuff, and you will have a beautiful backlit keyboard that will always be on if your laptop is on! Enjoy! UPDATE: I changed the frame from black to silver, by just prying them off each other and switching them. It looks MUCH nicer.

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    And there you have it! If you have any questions/comments regarding what was done here, just post and I'll be glad to help you out.
     
  2. dalamchops

    dalamchops Notebook Evangelist

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    awesome job : ) how did u do it
     
  3. David

    David NBR Random Reviewer NBR Reviewer

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    Very nice job Soulsaber!

    I was about to do this mod myself, but you beat me to it!
    Please provide instructions and pictures when you have time to share with others. I know many here on the forum are extremely interested in doing this mod.
     
  4. ronnieb

    ronnieb Representing the Canucks

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    Wow looks amazing! GJ!!
     
  5. dajohu

    dajohu Notebook Deity

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    Looks perfect! I would have never known it didn't come with a backlit keyboard.
     
  6. SoundsGood

    SoundsGood Notebook Virtuoso

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    Looks great!

    Gotta get me a laptop with a backlit keyboard... :)
     
  7. ckthepilot

    ckthepilot Notebook Deity

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    Is there an option for the backlit keyboard to be turned off?
     
  8. Soulsaber

    Soulsaber Notebook Evangelist

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    There probably is with more skilled wiring... but I don't have enough knowledge to do this, so it's always powered on. I haven't noticed any hit in battery life so far if that's what you are worried about.

    I'll post pics and instructions really soon!
     
  9. impruv

    impruv Notebook Evangelist

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    looks awesome soulsaber. One of the main things turning me away from the UL series :(
     
  10. YESHHHH

    YESHHHH Notebook Consultant

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    PL30JT + Backlit Keyboard Mod = :yes:

    Soulsaber, those pics look awesome!

    Post more pics + instructions asap :D.
     
  11. Th@n@tos

    Th@n@tos Notebook Consultant

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    ^ ditto, I'd also appreciate it if you took the time for a write up!
     
  12. David

    David NBR Random Reviewer NBR Reviewer

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    Soulsaber: Any progress with the additional pictures and instructions?
     
  13. Soulsaber

    Soulsaber Notebook Evangelist

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    I'll have it up on the weekend for sure, FF13 came out yesterday and that's occupying my time lol...
     
  14. Nuller-Joe

    Nuller-Joe Notebook Enthusiast

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    Wow, that looks nice, cant wait for the guide (when will it be out?) ^^
    Very good job !
     
  15. Soulsaber

    Soulsaber Notebook Evangelist

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    Out now!

    I am not responsible for any damages that occur if someone else does this ;)
     
  16. Th@n@tos

    Th@n@tos Notebook Consultant

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    Thanks for the write up with pictures, where did you get the keyboard from or where can we order them from?
     
  17. moral hazard

    moral hazard Notebook Nobel Laureate

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    How did you find the 5V source?
     
  18. Th@n@tos

    Th@n@tos Notebook Consultant

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    It's honestly not that hard if you have a multi-meter. I would check it before you do this mod just to make certain.

    I found a 302MM backlit keyboard in the estore but don't know what size the keyboards are in the UL30's, is that the one?
     
  19. moral hazard

    moral hazard Notebook Nobel Laureate

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    But what do you test against with a DMM?

    Do you just randomly test points against GND with a DMM while the notebook is on?
     
  20. YESHHHH

    YESHHHH Notebook Consultant

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    Soulsaber, have you noticed a hit on battery life yet?

    And since the keyboard is always lit, is it annoying when using the laptop during the day / in sunlight? Does it look.. out of place?
     

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