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Lighting Forum
Angel Eyes, DDEs, lighted rings, Clear Turn Signals, LEDs, Xenon, HID, or Bi-Xenon. If it lights up and you want to discuss it, post here!

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Old 04-25-2005, 08:22 AM   #1
BoD
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Custom interior LED conversion - BLUE

Hi all,

Just thought I'd post up some pics of my amber to blue interior backlighting conversion.

Before I start, let me just say that this is definately not a DIY type of project and if you should take EXTREME caution when modifying your OEM BMW circuit boards and switches. The problems and setbacks I encounted with this project were numerous, and if/when I get time I'll note them all done for you.

I decided to do this conversion as I'd always wanted a blue backlit interior I know BMW is amber/orange by standard.. and some of you may think the blue is wrong, but I LOVE it, and it's what I wanted. Also, I am a strong believer in "BMW Individual" program, but of course, there's no way BMW were going to do this mod for me! I want my Bimmer to be a one of kind, so that's another reason I took the plunge and did this. A big thanks for SilverLight who is (to my knowledge) the only other person in the world to attempt this kind of project. I know there have been people who have changed a switch or two, but this was a complete overhaul. There are no original LED's left in the car

All orange/amber LED's where moded to blue, and all green switch (on) indicators, as well as turning indicators, and any other green lights on the cluster, were all changed to amber.

This kind of job, apart from taking you car apart completely to bits, involved LED's that are EXTREMELY small. They were mostly surface mounted 0603's, 1206's, and PLC2 type. The size of some of these LED's measure only 1.6mmx0.6mm - yes you need a magnifying glass and specialised equipment for this kind of resoldering. The LCD panels (air-con and cluster odomotor) were also changed with alot of patience, and testing that probably hadn't been done before. I had no help or resources to turn to on this but in the end it turned out great.

I am still 'tweaking' some things... the stereo/NAV lights, although the same, appear dimmer. THis is because resistors on boards are filtering out for the factory orange LED's which run at a lower voltage and blue LED's typically require a higher voltage. I will be pulling the NAV out and changing these resisters soon, but again, like many parts of this project, work was done and re-done many times until I was happy with the result.

In the end, I replace over 150 LED's of various types and sizes. There were also several resisters I changed, or am in the process of changing to adjust voltage flow to different parts withint the car. The cost of this project (parts only) was approx. US$250. It took approx 2 weeks, almost full time to complete.

I have an electrical background, so again I stress to take care if you ever think about doing something like this. There was no documentation from BMW on what the specifications of their parts are, ie. voltage, or MCD (brightness) values so a lot of what I done was by trial and error, and from information shared from SilverLight, a BMW moder from Germany.

Photos are differcult to capture the true look but I hope you get the idea from below. Other parts done but not shown include sunroof switch and the 2 pin whole lights, ashtray light, front and rear, and let's not forget the boot/trunk release

Enjoy,
BoD.
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Last edited by BoD; 04-25-2005 at 08:41 AM.
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Old 04-25-2005, 08:25 AM   #2
bigjae1976
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Cool...and eerie looking.
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Old 04-25-2005, 08:28 AM   #3
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that looks sweet
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Old 04-25-2005, 08:30 AM   #4
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Do you find it more difficult to see? I have heard it puts strain on the eyes a bit more.
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Old 04-25-2005, 08:31 AM   #5
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That's so awsome. Love it.
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Old 04-25-2005, 08:40 AM   #6
kc_e46
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oh...finally someone did that... very nice bro!
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Old 04-25-2005, 08:44 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hempknowsis
Do you find it more difficult to see? I have heard it puts strain on the eyes a bit more.
Yes I have read that on MANY posts, that people 'claim' orange/amber is naturally easier on the eyes. I was worried about this also, but am happy to report that it reads just fine at night - And have had no problems to date. Quite interestingly, my father who also has a bimmer (with amber), and who is a lot blinder than I says he can see and read the blue speedo much easier?!
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Old 04-25-2005, 09:14 AM   #8
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Awesome job, looks great.
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Old 04-25-2005, 09:43 AM   #9
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I'm a sucker for gauges with that colour!!
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Old 04-25-2005, 10:34 AM   #10
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Wow
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Old 04-25-2005, 11:14 AM   #11
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Wow lots of work. Congrats on getting that accomplished but I'm not a huge fan of it
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Old 04-25-2005, 11:17 AM   #12
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Kudos to your skills bro.
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Old 04-25-2005, 11:24 AM   #13
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I'm impressed. I couldnt say anything bad about this. Its original, aand takes some balls to go through with it. Nice work
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Old 04-25-2005, 12:00 PM   #14
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I'm loving it.
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Old 04-25-2005, 12:02 PM   #15
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oh. my. gawd......


i was just about to post whinings about how insanely ugly the amber backlighting is..........


i want this, i NEED this.

where could i take my car to get this done? how much do you think it would cost to get a pro to do it for me????
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Old 04-25-2005, 01:08 PM   #16
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look's great, would suit a blue,grey, or black car
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Old 04-25-2005, 01:17 PM   #17
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wow.... ....very nicely done. that must have taken lots and lots of patience to get it just right. props for a very nice and original mod.
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Old 04-25-2005, 02:14 PM   #18
mikeson
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Looks good but I like red led better.

And I heard that BMW choose red color for reason.

anyway, your car is yours and it looks good
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Old 04-25-2005, 04:25 PM   #19
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looks good but the color is off on some of the switches... which just could be due to the higher resistance on the switch. I have the skill to attempt this but I don't know if its worth 2 weeks of time to do it. Please keep us updated. Did you change the color of your ambient light as well?
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Old 04-25-2005, 04:38 PM   #20
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very nice I likeyy..
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