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Discussion Starter #21 (Edited)
Anyone tried the stock radio cd/mp3 leds?
I bought my Sky with lots of different issues. One was that the radio display worked, but the radio buttons did not illuminate. In the end I bought another radio that used the exact same front panel assembly. I switched front panels to get illumination working again.

During my initial troubleshooting, I disassembled my original front panel hoping to find a fuse or something that could be replaced. My focus at the time was getting the LEDs to light up, not change their color. I will open my defective radio front panel and take some pictures for this discussion because I am now very curious myself.
 

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bent a paper clip paper your instruction as shown. Following your instruction, it was too weak for the task.
Yes, I did say you'd need one of the stiff (steel) ones. But no matter, you got 'er done!

Wow! Amazing result! I am an owner of an Opel GT (Europe edition of Redline) and I decided to refresh my interior. Your instructions are very helpful. Anyone tried the stock radio cd/mp3 leds? Thanks! You are our eyes in Europe, no such detailed forums here!
The lights on the radio are already LEDs and are all surface mount devices (many, many of them). So changing those is not for the faint-of-heart! In addition, the radio display itself is vacuum fluorescent - naturally green - but with the amber filter glued-on to the faceplate. The Solstice radio has a pink filter that changes the display color to grey-white, but the faceplate is metallic grey. You could get an old Solstice radio and pop the glue points on the filters and swap them with your radio, but you'd still have the PCB LED color issue (the Solstice radio LEDs are red). Some more info here: Migrated my (old) Solstice Radio faceplate to my (new)...
 

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Discussion Starter #23 (Edited)
I could not wait so I pulled out my extra radio face that is defective, the example being evaluated.
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This is the back side of the face of the radio. I removed all 11 screws, 9 plus the 2 on the tiny board in the lower left corner.
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A gentle prying along one edge and the circuit board popped out. Many LEDs are on the circuit board. The light from them pass thru tiny holes in the black rubber switch pad.
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Removing the switch pad, here are the buttons. Note the back side are white.
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Here I am holding the bare radio face to a florescent ceiling light. Note all the buttons light up a nice bright white. This means the dim orange color is sourced on the LEDs, not the buttons.
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Studying the LEDs on the circuit board, I cannot say for certain, but it appears there is a plastic piece glued on top of each little LED. I wonder if they could be removed to get a bright white LED output.
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I went through so much trouble getting my good working radio to illuminate, I am not willing to take the risk in damaging my good working radio face. If anyone else is a gambler, I would love to see the effect of removing the plastic tops on the LEDs. ripping the plastic off might break the LEDs, or just maybe they will light up a bright white as I wished they would.

Anyway, this was my findings on OEM radio button illumination.
 

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I went through so much trouble getting my good working radio to illuminate, I am not willing to take the risk in damaging my good working radio face. If anyone else is a gambler, I would love to see the effect of removing the plastic tops on the LEDs. ripping the plastic off might break the LEDs, or just maybe they will light up a bright white as I wished they would.
NO, NO, NO, Danger, Will Robinson!

That "plastic top" is a 'molded' part of the LED (actually epoxy usually). You can remove it, but you will no longer have a working LED! Just for some electronic component education here... red, green, yellow and blue LEDs (and others) glow those colors naturally based on their semiconductor formulation. White LEDs are actually blue LEDs, but set in an fluorescent medium that gets energised by the blue light output and 'glows' white. NO LED's natural colour is based on a filter. Though you could set a filter in front of them if you want, you may not get the output you expect!

Other than that, you said what I said in my earlier post :)
 

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Discussion Starter #26
Thanks Tomato Soup for the education on the LEDs.

Does the Redline and Base models have the same exact dark orange radio colors?

What about the colors of the Solstice radio? I think they might be plain white. Do I recall that correctly? I wonder if I could swap circuit boards and the display lens from a Solstice radio. I would swap the entire face, but the Solstice has the gray matte finish, not the Sky's gloss black.
 

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Thanks Tomato Soup for the education on the LEDs.

Does the Redline and Base models have the same exact dark orange radio colors?

What about the colors of the Solstice radio? I think they might be plain white. Do I recall that correctly? I wonder if I could swap circuit boards and the display lens from a Solstice radio. I would swap the entire face, but the Solstice has the gray matte finish, not the Sky's gloss black.
Post #22:
........ the radio display itself is vacuum fluorescent - naturally green - but with the amber filter glued-on to the faceplate. The Solstice radio has a pink filter that changes the display color to grey-white, but the faceplate is metallic grey. You could get an old Solstice radio and pop the glue points on the filters and swap them with your radio, but you'd still have the PCB LED color issue (the Solstice radio LEDs are red). Some more info here: Migrated my (old) Solstice Radio faceplate to my (new)...
 

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Discussion Starter #28
Ah! Yes JohnWR, I see that now. Somehow I missed it. I got poor grades for reading comprehension in school and it still shows today. The only lighting improvement to gain with a Solstice radio face is the main screen filter that can be swapped via over-coming the adhesion. Thanks for the clarification that Tomato Soup stated clearly to begin with.
 

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Can we identify what kind of smd leds are those? Watt, Voltage, etc. in order to buy these? Your walkthroughts are very convincing! I am planning to do the operation on the following weekend as the car is stripped from all plastic parts for paint job!
 

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Discussion Starter #32
emik14,

Your pictures look all too familiar. My Sky looked like that for a number of months. Just recently I got it all back together.

I look forward to reading your choice of LEDs and your success in soldering them on the radio face circuit board.
 

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rjgramps,

My GT has 105.000 km about 65.000 miles and I recently had an engine failure. So I decided to keep the car which I love and upgrade the engine (wiseco pistons, etc). And for this reason I wanted to refine the interior (leather interior change, plastic parts paint job, led, etc.). So the leds are a way to upgrade the mood!
 

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Discussion Starter #34 (Edited)
So the leds are a way to upgrade the mood!
We bought our Sky last January. At the time I had no plan to do any lighting changes, but the itch for improvement in illumination and general lighting came quickly.

My first lighting change was on the Instrument Panel (IP). My Sky is a Base model. It's stock IP face was very hard to read, day or night it didn't matter. My changes were very successful which then gave me the itch to match all other interior lighting around it. Night driving once was so dark and dingy, difficult to see anything inside. Today, the interior is alive at night....We Can See!!!

If your IP is all original, you should find my post HERE (with many pictures) on IP illumination, very interesting. You can improve the stock incandescent light bulbs by removing their colored bulb covers, or go all-out like I did and replace the bulbs with LEDs and also install a custom made IP face to further improve the lighting. I tried to be very detailed with process and pictured results.
 

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Can we identify what kind of smd leds are those? Watt, Voltage, etc. in order to buy these? Your walkthroughts are very convincing! I am planning to do the operation on the following weekend as the car is stripped from all plastic parts for paint job!
There's no real way to tell the model #s of these LEDs. The voltage (roughly) will be the same for all LEDs of a similar color, but it's pretty likely that any surface mount LED of any color will work as a replacement - just some might be brighter than others. The REAL issue is first getting the correct size LED, and then having the ability to remove and resolder surface mount parts. If you have to ask how, then don't do it!

As for the correct sizes, you'll have to measure the length and width of one of the LEDs and then look that up in the table here to get the SM designation: SMD Packages: Sizes Dimensions Details » Electronics Notes For example an 0805 part would measure 0.08 x 0.05 inches


And are the radio ones as the ones on the speedometer, doors, etc? Thanks in advance
No. I don't believe any of the other lights are surface mount LEDs. In fact most (door and gauges) are actually incandescent bulbs
 

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Discussion Starter #37 (Edited)
I Added The Glove Box Light Tonight

It took about an hour including setup and cleanup. I tied it into the floor light circuit. It turned out perfect. One 12V LED offers plenty of light.
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I flipped the box more open by pushing in the bump-stops on the sides, then drilled a tiny hole just big enough for the LED to fit into, then drilled 2 more tiny holes for a wire tie to hold the wires and LED in place.

I mounted the LED in the ceiling of the moving glove box, located in the flat area just beyond the gentile curve in the plastic. Located there seems to be just right in illuminating the full depth of the glove box.
 

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Discussion Starter #39 (Edited)
Wow! Really cool result! One led only produced such brightness?
Yes, because the LED mounted in the top of the glove box, is only about 6" from the bottom of the box along with the small size of the compartment. Two LEDs would be one too many.

After I put my stuff back in the glove box, it was even more evident, one LED is just right.
 

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So back to the questions about changing out the LED's in the AC control unit. Has anyone successfully changed the center light color that illuminated when pressed on these? So the AC, recirculater or rear window?
Mine are still orange, and ive gone through a lot to change everything else over to purple. Havent been able to find info on these, and not quite daring enough to just try something out. lol
 
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