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Hardware Hacking Portables (Apple) Build

MacBook Modded With Second Monitor Inside Logo 153

An anonymous reader from the Macmod forum wrote in with this appealing hack: "This is one of the coolest mods I've seen all year. Mac Moder EdsJunk submitted this mod to our forums late Thursday night. By cracking open a MacBook he was able to put a second monitor inside of the screen. The end result is sweet. The second monitor can make the Apple logo have any kind of background, like the clown fish, or the flurry screen saver."
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MacBook Modded With Second Monitor Inside Logo

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  • argh (Score:4, Informative)

    by drinkypoo ( 153816 ) <> on Friday March 13, 2009 @09:19AM (#27179707) Homepage Journal

    "From the MacMod forums..." ... "Sorry but the board is temporarily unavailable, please try again in a few minutes."

    Seems like a relatively trivial hack, if you can get the video-out from the DisplayPort connector to work inside the machine somehow. Since the panel backlight is already exposed at the rear to light the Apple logo, the hardest part ought to be getting the backlight off of the LCD you want to cram in there.

  • Cool... but limited (Score:5, Informative)

    by PrescriptionWarning ( 932687 ) on Friday March 13, 2009 @09:19AM (#27179709)
    I could see the use of it being an extra interface for quickly showing you the date and time, and perhaps even if you have unread mail or IM's waiting for you, but if its just to display images its just a toy
  • Re:argh (Score:5, Informative)

    by KillerBob ( 217953 ) on Friday March 13, 2009 @09:33AM (#27179825)

    Compared to some of the mods that people are doing, this one is pretty easy. The backlight usually isn't even physically attached to the lcd, and the LCD itself is about 0.5-1mm thick (depending on brand/type). Buy an off-the-shelf 2" LCD, remove the backlight, and connect it to the motherboard through the appropriate connector. There's probably a little bowing just because of the space considerations, but other than that it's not a difficult mod at all. As GP said, the backlight from the main LCD is already exposed, and I'd think the hardest part of the mod would be putting some kind of polyvinyl or acrylate coating on the back LCD to prevent it from scratching.

    Laptop LCD's are remarkably easy to open up and work with. You just need the right kind of screwdriver.

  • Youtube Vid of this (Score:5, Informative)

    by jDeepbeep ( 913892 ) on Friday March 13, 2009 @09:45AM (#27179911)
    For those who may be having difficulty accessing TF(slashdotted)A []
  • Re:I'm surprised. (Score:5, Informative)

    by drinkypoo ( 153816 ) <> on Friday March 13, 2009 @09:49AM (#27179947) Homepage Journal

    If somebody managed to put a screen behind the logo, that means that there was some extra space in the original design. That seems very un-maclike. Apple has, repeatedly, shown a willingness to make considerable design sacrifices in order to shave off a few millimeters.

    That is not "extra" space. That space is there to allow you to push on the case without breaking your LCD. This guy has just squandered that and the first time he sets something heavy on his laptop by accident he's going to break his panel, because he's now going to push directly in the center of it. If Apple meant for there to be zero clearance there, they would have made it so. I've had (and expressed) lots of problems with Apple hardware in the past, but case design isn't one of them - albeit, Apple has gone substantially backwards in many regards. Ever take apart, say, a Mac IIci? It's actually kind of a joyful experience. Now, ever try to disassemble a classic iMac to make some upgrades? Egads! Even fucking around with the blue-handled Xcelite MacCaseCracker on a classic doorstop Mac is pleasant by comparison. I haven't taken apart a Mini, but the instruction photos leave me shaking my head.

  • by houghi ( 78078 ) on Friday March 13, 2009 @10:24AM (#27180231)

    A toy if your case is open. Closed it could give you information in the form of icons. Or you could rent it out as ad space. Or a clock or ...

    And anyway indeed way cool. Makes me want one.

  • by acidrainx ( 806006 ) on Friday March 13, 2009 @10:30AM (#27180291) Homepage
    Unfortunately you can't close a Macbook without it going into standby. Not without a hack anyway.
  • Re:argh (Score:5, Informative)

    by Teilo ( 91279 ) on Friday March 13, 2009 @10:45AM (#27180465) Homepage

    Seems like a relatively trivial hack

    Take it from someone who has actually replaced LCD panels in a MacBook Pro. This is NOT a relatively trivial hack.

    And you cannot just "get the backlight off the LCD". The back portion of the panel proper is a reflective surface. Take that off, and your panel goes dark, except for two of the edges where the CCFL tubes or LED arrays are located.

    On the MacBook Pro what this guy is doing would be nearly impossible. There is just no room between the panel and the shell. There's a bit more room in the regular MacBook.

  • by Ilgaz ( 86384 ) on Friday March 13, 2009 @01:08PM (#27182809) Homepage

    Cray did even a more weird thing, on a multi million supercomputer which at most 4-5 super security cleared technicians would see in physical form. []

    (from Wiki)
    'The Cray T3D MC cabinet had an Apple Macintosh PowerBook laptop built into its front. Its only purpose was to display animated Cray Research and T3D logos on its color LCD screen.'

    And it was 5th on Top 500 back in 1998.

  • LCD Mod Website (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 13, 2009 @03:10PM (#27184599)

    Hey guys.. im the one that did the mod.. I have put up a small website to keep you guys updated with tutorials, and even this very macbook on ebay here soon! Check it out!

You can measure a programmer's perspective by noting his attitude on the continuing viability of FORTRAN. -- Alan Perlis