PBook: changing colour for backlit keyboard?

Posted by: Francia

PBook: changing colour for backlit keyboard? - 02/18/05 01:20 AM

Hello All & Greetings from Montreal! smile

I will soon be the proud owner of a new 15inch Powerbook, and after looking at a few mods on the net, I came up with a question for which I really hope is possible.
I love the look of the Powerbook, however blue is definitely not my favorite colour. Considering it's light through fiber optics I assume that the colour comes from one source? I haven't opened one personally so I'm just guessing here... considering I've never seen coloured fiber optic! B) There's got to be a way to change the colour... please someone tell me there is! :unsure:
Posted by: krusher117

Re:PBook: changing colour for backlit keyboard? - 02/18/05 01:23 AM

I have seen a take apart and pictures of the fiber optics of the PB....I'll see what I can find this afternoon
Posted by: krusher117

Re:PBook: changing colour for backlit keyboard? - 02/18/05 02:54 AM

here you go.
http://www.medicalmac.com/mac106.html

Posted by: modyourmac

Re:PBook: changing colour for backlit keyboard? - 02/18/05 03:44 AM

here's the quick trick I would try.

figure that there's powered LED's that illuminate the fiber optic strands that make everything glow. And its all UNDER the keyboard, not specifically part of the keyboard.

I'd go to an art store, and find some colored acetate thats pretty thin, and relatively transparent. Then, if you've got the moxie, remove your top case (24 screws) and remove the keyboard from the top case. Cut the acetate to shape, and use a hole punch to punch out where the screws need to go through. Lay it in place, reattach your keyboard, and then the top case. When you power up and illuminate in the dark, the light will go through the acetate, pick up its color, and it should make your keys glow that color.

Figure that I've not done this, but at first thought, thats how I'd proceed. At least, it seems the logical way.
Posted by: krusher117

Re:PBook: changing colour for backlit keyboard? - 02/18/05 03:51 AM

That might interfere with the brightness, but its a good thing to try before you go replacing LEDs. If there are multiple LEDs that provide the light, you could even do a dual color mod and have differenty colors on the keyboard. Do they make a changing color LED?
Posted by: Francia

Re:PBook: changing colour for backlit keyboard? - 02/18/05 04:00 AM

Thanks for the quick response!

I think the acetate idea is probably the easiest, however do any of you think this might get hot? I mean, if there isn't anything there in the first place, is it a good idea? Although it would probably help protect from dust and whatever else... considering it's replaced or cleaned once in a while. As for accessing the underneath of the keyboard, the PBook that I'm probably going to get is a new one, and on Apple's website under Developer/PBook 15inch, its says the keyboard used to be removable in order to insert RAM, however now it is not. Is this true or did I just misunderstand?
Another question: if the keyboard usually lights up blue, what if I want it red... what are the chances it ends up purple?
Posted by: modyourmac

Re:PBook: changing colour for backlit keyboard? - 02/18/05 04:27 AM

francia, you're right in the fact that the keyboard is not user removable to install ram. You have to remove the units top case, and remove the keyboard from that. Its more in depth than with the ti-books. As for heat concerns, the 15" has a blower assembly that moves air through the case, and out the back. I dont think heat would be a major concern.

Now as for purple, its a maybe. I'd pick up a well saturated red piece of acetate and see what happens. My guess from previous play with the stuff thougb is that it would be more red than blue or purple.
Posted by: krusher117

Re:PBook: changing colour for backlit keyboard? - 02/18/05 06:05 AM

blue to red will be impossible with acetate. you will get a mix between the two colors, because that is essentially what you are doing. Perhaps the LEDs are white and shining through a blue film, I actually don't know which it is.It won't be difficult at all to change out the LEDs, at least no more difficult that adding the acetate. However the acetate won't truly void your warranty and won't require a soldering iron. From my understanding the keyboard of the AL Books are not removeable as before because you now install RAM and airport from underneath. You'll probably have to remove the whole top, including keyboard, like they did in the take apart pictures. Good luck and take LOTS OF PICTURES
Posted by: oojacoboo

Re:PBook: changing colour for backlit keyboard? - 02/18/05 08:38 AM

Krusher, have you ever changed LEDs? Adding Acetate is alot easier and safer in my opinion.
Posted by: mark

Re:PBook: changing colour for backlit keyboard? - 02/18/05 09:41 AM

I've got a friend who made a color change with some green transparent vinyl, and having seen it in person its works very well. As I remember it didn't affect the brightness much.



I may have some more photos of it somewhere.