Welcome to part 3 of a multi-part post on moddng the Acer Aspire One!
In part 1, I showed how to take the Aspire One apart, how to upgrade the RAM, and how to add internal Bluetooth. In part 2, I showed how to replace the SSD with a 1.8″ PATA hard drive and how to reassemble the Aspire One…
First, I’d like to apologize to those who have been waiting patiently for this mod. Since I posted parts 1 & 2, I’ve been quite busy with work and other distractions, such as Burning Man and my trip to Finland. To make matters more difficult, some of the parts I ordered took 2 months to be delivered.
Second, this mod was pretty difficult, but it was definitely worth it. Some things, like soldering the missing mini-PCIe connector, only required the right skill and equipment. Other things, like getting power to the mini-PCIe card and wiring up the SIM holder, required a lot of trial and error.
DISCLAIMER: If you’re not experienced doing precision soldering with a fine-tipped, temperature-controlled iron, using soldering wick & flux, as well as proper magnification, then I suggest you avoid this mod. I’m not responsible if you damage anything. In fact, one of my SIMs was destroyed in the making of this mod.
- Right-angle, 9 mm height mini-PCIe connector
- Push-push, 6 pin SIM holder
- Multi-band antenna with cable and U.FL connector
- Unlocked mini-PCIe 3G (HSUPA/HSDPA/EDGE/GPRS) card
2) Chances are you’ll have to modify the SIM holder to match this pinout. Be creative! If you’re lucky to find the right SIM holder, just solder it on and email me the manufacturer/part #. I’d like to thank JKK for providing me with a physically (but not electrically, oops) compatible SIM holder. By default there’s no power to the SIM holder, until you install this jumper.
You’ll have to tape pin 20 on the mini-PCIe 3G card. Once again, I’d like to thank JKK for this tip. File the plastic cover of the wireless switch so it can slide both the right and to the left (see update below). That’s it, you’re done :)
The pictures show the end result. I used the mini-PCIe card from my Sierra Wireless AirCard 875U together with the Sierra Wireless 3G Watcher. With this mod, I managed 2084 Kbps down and 347 Kbps up. That’s very good!
In part 4, I’ll be adding eSATA to the Aspire One, so keep reading…
Update: Since originally doing this mod, I’ve relocated the antenna from under the palm rest to inside the screen lid for better performance.
Also, thanks to various people’s comments on various other posts that have linked to my mod, I’ve been able to remove the tape from pin 20 on the mini-PICe 3G card, and use the wireless switch to turn HSDPA radio on/off…
The wireless switch is actually a 2-way switch – slide it to the right and it turns WiFi on/off, slide it to the left and it turns the HSDPA radio on/off (see video). By default it can only slide to the right to turn the WiFi on/off until you file the plastic cover, thus allowing it to also slide to the left!