back to article Man wields soldering iron, welds eight new devices into Eee PC

You've got to admire Ivan Cover's soldering ability if not his ability to work out how and then cram no fewer than eight extra components into his Asus Eee PC. He also upgraded the tiny laptop's 802.11b/g Wi-Fi to 802.11n, but that's more about replacing an existing component with a new one rather than adding the functionality …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    All well and good...

    This modding stuff is all well and good, but someone has to ask the most important question of all: WHERE'S THE BABE GONE????

  2. Lyndon Hills

    Another mod required?

    I think he's running his web site on it.

  3. b
    Thumb Up


    an example to asus..

    well done, my son!

  4. Anonymous Coward

    Very impressive...

    ...but can he install thunderbird without completely borking it?

    on a more relevant comment, it would have been cooler to scoop out the feeble contents of the battery case, and fuel-cell it. Ie upgrade from 2.5hrs battery life to something crazy like 20hrs.

    He'll need it to run all those extra toys.

  5. BoldMan


    This is simply not good enough! We DEMAND the correct picture to be published with every Eee PC story! The innards of the machine photo just does not cut them mustard unless its being fondled by a blonde in a bikini!


    Excellent but...

    why not put a 3G card in as well?

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    I... impressed...

    No DVD-RW though?

  8. Darren Coleman

    Cost efficiency

    It's all very well saying "let this be a lesson to you Asus!" but it doesn't touch on the economic aspects of the modding.

    For starters Asus will have worked out what they could fit into the form factor at a certain cost/profit point, and more importantly still be able to provide a warranty for.

    Most cars that come to market are build with parts that just about to do the job but can be improved upon, but this does not automatically mean it's a no-brainer for the manufacturer to add it themselves just because an aspiring modder has.

    As great an achievement it is we have no idea what knockon effects these mods have to the battery life, the overall heat output or part cost, etc.

  9. Sampler


    looks a bit fugly doesn't it - and I bet it's difficult to type on those circuit boards


  10. Matty B

    Too much time on thier hands?

    What I don't get, is why so many people seem to be modding these little beauties. I mean, sure they're cheap enough, but wouldn't it be more practical to mod the hell out of something that was already a beast, and make it a behemoth?

    Still, impressive work, wish I thought of it first.

    Also, saw the story on HackADay 4 days ago...

  11. Paul
    Paris Hilton


    Somone told me El Reg was running the Asus pic with no top on...Imagine my dismay etc etc

  12. George Flecknell
    Thumb Up

    The sad truth is...

    that the added functionality makes it a far more attractive proposition.

  13. Ian Ferguson
    Paris Hilton


    Has he upgraded the Eee babe to a D-cup too?

  14. Paul

    @"Too much time on thier hands?"

    "but wouldn't it be more practical to mod the hell out of something that was already a beast, and make it a behemoth"

    Not if your measure of "practical" is how big the thing is.

    Besides, any idiot can expand a machine designed to *be* expandable. Sure it might be an impressive performer, but it's not "special".

  15. TechnoTurkeyesque

    Good work that boy

    And you can get thunderbird running on it very easily, or at least I did!

    Where is the lovely Asus lady, I though El Reg didn't need news as an excuse??

  16. Jeremy

    All that good soldering...

    And then you go and ruin it by putting Windows XP on it !

    *smacks forehead*

    A glass of Xubuntu for my Eee please.

  17. b166er

    original source

    this was posted on eeeuser's forum

    A 3G card has been added already, and a touchscreen. (jkkmobile)

    Apparently, for optimal use of the touchscreen, the desktop wallpaper of the EEE should be the bikini-clad girlie!

    RE battery life, the great thing with this mod, is a bank of DIP switches for turning extra devices off when not required and the fact that the power source was taken from an off in standby pin.

  18. Corrine
    Gates Horns

    I'm probably

    The only one here who noticed the computer instead of the model in the old pic aren't I?

  19. yeah, right.


    Now if someone comes up with a way to "mod" the shoddy build quality, the Eee PC would definitely be a winner. The form factor, for starters, is perfect for "on the go".

    Hmm. Actually, a bit of extra glue and a couple of screws might fix some of the bigger issues, such as the keyboard module sliding under the edge of the case.

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Gates Halo

    A what??

    Why in god's name would you put a modem in there? Ran out of peripherals? If he's going for vintage, he at least could have stuck on an RJ11 to hook up the acoustic coupler.

  21. David Cornes

    A shame he can't give the thing a bigger screen

    I saw one of these puppies in Toys R Us last week (don't ask). Whilst he overall form factor is very sweet, very portable, and emininently suited to my requirements for a simple, portable, cheap, second computer, they're going to have to make that screen bigger before they get any of my money.

  22. Rick Brasche

    sweet-big props

    tho as a previous poster said, it needs one more awesome hack-a ridiculously overpowered battery.

    I'd say, lose the modem, then work at disassembling some model airplane LiPO's into their individual cells and putting them anywhere there's space left. Or something

    Solar Cells? One of those MHD generators Voyager uses? A crank system from the OLPC fiasco?

  23. Gordon Jahn

    Driver Support

    I completely mis-read this line in the article:

    "Ivan's running Windows XP on his Eee, which makes driver support a little less hit and miss than the machine's own version of Linux."

    Have you actually read the guys Wiki page and seen how much faffing was needed trying to alter Windows drivers from the wrong sources to get this thing working? In my experience, Plug and Play actually works in Linux because it can control a chip and not just the one with the given manufacturer ID.

    I think that the only item on that list I'd be unsure about in Linux is the GPS receiver, but since it's running via a USB serial port, I can't imagine any difficulties there either.

    You'd really rather hack a Windows driver than plug it in and use it??

  24. Dave Bell

    It's the ideas....

    Not all of us would want to open up a laptop and commit soldering, though I've had to do it a couple of times on an ancient 486, to fix the power connector.

    But some of the ideas are tempting. A cheap USB hub and a USB flash drive, and I could have a useful improvement. And it does have a Mini-PCI slot: do I need a dial-up modem?

    Come to think of it, it might not be so hard to combine a hub and a drive in an external case.

    Thanks for publicising the ideas.

    (You can set up an Eee to boot of the SD card. So your whole OS and data-set can be seperated from the machine.)

  25. andy rock

    @ yeah, right

    "Now if someone comes up with a way to "mod" the shoddy build quality, the Eee PC would definitely be a winner."

    really? the one i saw/held/fondled/used was of a good build quality, i thought. certainly better than quite a few others i've got my hands on.

  26. andy rock
    Dead Vulture

    tsk tsk, Tony!

    "Ivan's running Windows XP on his Eee, which makes driver support a little less hit and miss than the machine's own version of Linux."

    what, you mean like running ANY linux box? selecting devices based on the drivers being present in your kernel/distro of choice is something i got used to a few years ago.

    you might as well have gone with the tagline: "Linux in not-quite-as-easy-to-get-devices-for-as-Windows shocker!"

  27. Peter Kay

    Wow.. although a bit over the top

    Great mods - provided you pick and choose which ones to install, otherwise it gets into laptop pricing territory. As it is, if you're going to void the warranty, a second hand Thinkpad X40 becomes more than a minor possibility..

  28. Jason Clery

    All well and good...

    but does it blend?

    and where is the "does it blend" icon!

  29. Haku

    @yeah, right

    Are you still trying continuing with your one-man-campaign against the Eee? If what you described of the keyboard was the norm on these things then people would be complaining about it *everywhere*, so either you're lying or the one you used was badly abused before you got to try it.

  30. Anonymous Coward

    And also....

    He managed to hide 25kg of cemtex under the board.

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