DIY: Glowing Apple Logo Laptop Mod [Hackintosh]

DIY glowing apple logoEvery one loves Apple‘s gadgets but not all of them have one. That’s why building a Hackintosh is such a popular mod among the enthusiasts.

Last year when I first built my Hackintosh Laptop, I seriously missed one thing: The Bright White Glowing Apple Logo on the back of my HP Notebook. I looked around for a proper DIY guide to do it, there was one but it eventually went down.

Luckily, I took an offline copy of it, while I was trying to build it. So here I present the exclusive tutorial of Creating Glowing Apple Logo Mod for your Notebook/Netbook.

Original work by EdsJunk from the MSI Wind Forums (link seems to be down)

So if you have Installed Snow Leopard on PC with our Hackintosh guides, this thing would add to the grace.

What you need

  1. A Crystal clear Apple logo possibly made of crystal (you can find it off an old iBook, or even sol seperately on eBay in some countries. If it ain’t available in your country, try getting a plastic-glass cut in the exact shape.
  2. A diffusion type material (Most Apple logos already have this at their back)
  3. Dremel tool and or files to smoothen-out surfaces.
  4. Masking tape.
  5. Spray paint ( of the color of your Notebook) (optional)
  6. 800-1000 grit WetsandPaper (optional)
  7. A good Adhesive: superglue, elfy, quickfix etc.
  8. Misc: Tools to remove lid
  9. That’s it, no LEDs or Wiring required, we would light it from the LCD’s back-light source.

First thing first, here is the Apple glass Logo we talked about in 1.

Step 1. Removing the Lid

Method of removing the lid could differ from manufacturer to manufacturer, but here is something very generic.

Remove the 4 rubber pieces on the screen bezel, beneath them are screws, remove them. Carefully pry up the bezel. Next, remove the final two screws that hold the screen to the hinges. When done, the LCD and lid will be separated. Go ahead and remove the LCD connection, unplug it and put your LCD to the side. If your laptop has a camera, mic, carefully remove them. Also what needs to be removed is the antenna wires that are used with the inbuilt wifi. Carefully remove them and keep them aside.

Step 2. Cutting the lid

Now that the lid is nice and lonely, you need to cut a hole through the foil/black padding. Normally, it depends on the size of the Apple Logo you are embedding, a 3″ x 3″ square is enough for most cases.

Next we trace the apple logo on the lid using masking tape. Keep it upright and centred. Msot important thing is that your trace should be mirrored, since it will look 90degrees apart from the outside.

Next up we do the toughest task, cutting it to the trace. Best practce would be to drill out of center and then use files to match the trace’s shape. Spend alot of time on this, if you do this wrong, it would look ugly with grooves visible from outside and there’s no way back. Try to keep a small margin from the traces so that you can push hard and stick the glass log in.

Keep putting the clear logo up to it to make sure your filing out the right parts. And when you are satisfied, stick it in with a glue. Don’t worry if leave minor grooves, those can be fixed by painting the glass-back black (or the color of your notebook) with sharpie markers (or any others).

Step 3. Wetsanding, Painting (optional)

At this point, you can wetsand the outside surface, and paint it again, but I didn’t really feel the need for it.

Step 4. Diffusion Material at back (optional, good to have)

Next, apply the diffusion material over the back of the clear logo. This will cause you not to see shadows or the LCD wiring. You can even threw colored plastic in there to get a different color apple!

Step 5. Getting the Light source

The backlight for the logo can messup the illumination of your LCD screen, so we need to isolate it. Cutting away the plastic and foil that keeps the back light from shinning threw the back of the LCD.

So grab that LCD screen, lookout, there is going to be some tape foil towards the bottom covering up the circuitry. Cut away all that you dont need, just leave enough to cover the circuit board. Go ahead and tape off any openings and the connection because you dont want any dust getting in there. Now you gotta cut out a good portion of that white plastic cover(dremel with cut off disk would do). Towards the top of the LCD the white palstic cover kinda clips onto the metal frame. Carefully unclip the two, you will notice you dont get much play room. I got enough room just to lift the white plastic cover up a little bit so i wouldnt cut threw my screen. Now carefully cut about a 3″ x 3″ square (same as what you did previously) out of the plastic. You will get a alot of dust if you are using a dremel. As long as you mask everything off, it’s all good.

Block it using a silver foil.  You gotta remove a square of foil and you will get light. IMPOTANT: You need to be careful. This foil is directly adhered to the material used to distribute and even amount of light to your screen! It comes off easily but, it will take some time. Cutting through the white material under the foil would leave very dark spots on the screen. It can be fixed back, the hard way. Simply stating, just take enough time and carefully peel away enough foil. (removing just the foil does NOT affect your screen at all, just make sure you don’t remove White area). After the foil is removed, the light is all yours Apple! Bright and attractive.

Step 6. Putting things back

Now go ahead and put all of the stuff you removed back into the LCD lid. The antennas, camera and mic back on the bezel, route the wires nicely and screw it all back together. For almost all screens, screen goes onto the lid then the hinges ontop of that. And while stuffing things back, make sure hinges don’t hurt your wires. Reinstall the bezel and then clip the hinge covers back on. Now the glory is yours, and the Apple shines.

Before:

After:

And now thinking of modding my Sony VAIO

Only trouble is the logo is way too huge to be altered.

But wait a minute.. Why cutting the screen Baklight area, why Not use LEDs instead?

If you happen to use LEDs, chance s are (like 99%) that you would get un-even distribution of light over the logo giving you bright and dark spots, spoiling the fun. Secondly, it would need extra power source that will eat apart of your battery. When its fed from LCD screen, there’s almsot no effect on luminance of screen and you end up consuming the same battery that you did earlier. And the thirdly, the best part: It will turn OFF and ON whenever your screen is ON or OFF — just like an Apple MacBook would do. And lastly, no wiring mess. I feel it’s worth the extra mile.

What’s next? Try DIY Keyboard Backlit Illumination

P.S. Similar hack can be applied for iPhone glowing apple logo. but its much harder to implement.

We write about Latest in tech, GoogleDo-it-yourself (DIY)iPhoneGadgetsOpen SourceProgramming. Grab them all @taranfx on Twitter or below:

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  • connor

    i dont suppose you know what model that HP latop is do you?

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    • AbortionNO.org

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HP_EliteBook

      my guess is: 6930p

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    • DV5200tx

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  • Nonya

    If you are painting the laptop when you do this be sure NO paint will get in contact with the back of the LCD screen. My screen is now brighter where paint came in contact with it. I did not complete this Hackintosh mod, as I am not a fan of apple. But for those who are painting their Laptop while doing this mod be warned!

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  • Store Rob

    What osx build are you using on your sony laptop?

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  • going thru all that..

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  • speaker damage

    Was that done on a CCFL LCD? Can it be done on a LED screen?

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  • AWESOME! I’M GONNA TRY IT!

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  • AidanO

    LOL fuck off

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  • Nate

    i want to do this but with the Linux penguin!

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