I had a coworker interested in having an xbox modded. I found out it was a 1.6 revision motherboard which is one of the most difficult to mod, but I decided to take on the challenge. I found a decent chip called the Duox2 GS and also found a seller on xbox-scene.com. He was only charging $13 shipped for them, so I decided to order 2 of them to have an extra on hand.
I now wish I would have taken some pictures after the work was done, but figured I would go through the installation process with some pictures already out on the net.
The first step that I did was install the pin header on the chip. Some of the more expensive chips already have this done for you, but it was pretty easy. You do have to remove 2 pins from the header to fit it into the chip as shown in this pic.
I also put two bits of solder on the D0 and BT pads on the chip for wires that have to be connected later.
Next you need to take apart the xbox and get the motherboard out. You then put the other half of the pin header into the LPC port on the motherboard like so with the shorter pins going to the bottom of the board.
I then used some electrical tape to hold the pin connector in place and then flipped the motherboard over.
Now comes the fun part of the 1.6 motherboard. On earlier motherboards you just solder the pin connector into place and then only have to worry about the 2 wires I mentioned earlier. WIth the 1.6 board you have to rebuild the port. When this board first came out you had to rebuild it with wires and the final result would look something like this.
Now most modchips come with an LPC rebuild board, so all you have to do is solder the board at the points where you would have connected the wire. Here is a great animated gif I found showing how the rebuild board is used.
I soldered all the points and then did then soldered the pins to the board last. On the rebuild board is also a pad for the D0 connection. I applied some soldier to the connection first then attached a wire which I ran through one of the holes for the motherboard screws.
That’s it for the bottom of the board so it can be flipped back over and the electrical tape removed. The chip can now be slid onto the pins via the pin header.
To finish you take that D0 wire and solder it to the point on the chip that I pre soldered marked D0. Then take another wire and connect it to the pad marked BT on the chip and the other end to the board behind the eject button like so
Now the final result in the box will look like this
The first time I tried to boot up the xbox did frag with no picture. The problem was with the LPC board, so I had to go over those connections a few times until it was right. After that all was well.
The chip I bought was the same in the picture, but the white version. The white version comes with the cromwell bios installed for running Linux, but it is easy to flash to suit whatever needs you have. The chips has two 512k banks for two bioses. Bank 0 has the Cromwell bios and bank 1 has the flashbios program which all you need to do is insert a disc with the bios labeled bios.bin.
Here are screenshots of how the two different banks boot up.
There you have it. It was fun to mod an xbox again and to try a 1.6 for the first time. The person I did this for can’t beleive all the stuff you can do with a modded xbox and is thinking of having it done to a 2nd one. I highly recommend it for a cheap media center, but you better hurry. Gamestop just announced in February that they are no longer taking in original xbox stuff, so once their stocks are dried up they are gone. I think last I checked they were charging $40-$50 for a used one.
Reminds me of the satellite piracy wars of the ’80s. 🙂