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Guitar Hero Button Mod


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#1 Aggression

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Posted 29 May 2007 - 12:55 AM

I am going to be lighting up the buttons. only thing is, I would like to know how to lightup an led when the button is pressed. any ideas?

#2 grim_d

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Posted 29 May 2007 - 12:59 AM

moving to case/hardware modding.

you will get a better response there.

#3 RDC

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Posted 29 May 2007 - 01:30 AM

There's no real "easy" way to do it because of how the 360 controllers all work, even the Guitar is setup in a funky "matrix" configuration. I've only seen 1 controller for the 360 with a common ground so far.

What you'd have to do is "split" each of the buttons contacts, there are 2 for each button on the neck, so as to reduce the risk of a button press being missed and thus blowing a note, which you'll automatically increase some doing the mod this way. Other methods would involve adding some new switch or button in the mix, and that'll throw off how the buttons feel and make them a little harder to push as well. It's an extremely tricky thing to pull off, but it's doable if ya want to go for it. If I had another Guitar I'd wire it all up and show ya the trace cuts and mess you'd have to do to make it LED ready.

#4 Aggression

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Posted 29 May 2007 - 01:33 AM

w/e the difficulty is, im up too it. if u can give me details pleasssse pm me

#5 grim_d

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Posted 29 May 2007 - 01:35 AM

QUOTE(Aggression @ May 29 2007, 02:09 AM) View Post

w/e the difficulty is, im up too it. if u can give me details pleasssse pm me


please discuss it in the thread for any other members who may be interested in doing a similar mod.

#6 RDC

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Posted 29 May 2007 - 01:55 AM

I just had a look at this some more, and besides the actual wiring being a nightmare (you'll be doing all of it thru a magnifying glass at least) you do know that the buttons are so thick that hardly any light is going to shine thru right?

Edited by RDC, 29 May 2007 - 01:59 AM.


#7 cyrus119

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Posted 29 May 2007 - 02:17 AM

QUOTE
you do know that the buttons are so thick that hardly any light is going to shine thru right?


When I was painting my Gh2 controller today I had this same thought. And I also noticed the buttons are far to thick. But they are a very simple design. and if you have access to some thick plexi, a 3d mill, or some more advanced dremal skill you could remake them, clear. Then just light them with the correct color or w/e color you want.

#8 RDC

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Posted 29 May 2007 - 02:57 AM

This is most of what all is involved in doing just 1 button, and I'm not jerking yer chain, this is VERY difficult and WILL screw up the Guitar, because the repair is even harder, if not done properly...


Black are trace cuts, these have to be done around hair width thickness, you can't just hack out a chunk of the trace to make the break in it at all, you need every little bit of it that you can spare since these traces are pretty small.

After you've done that part, you have the contacts seperated, but each half of the original buttons connections are on opposite sides. That has to be fixed by using a jumper wire (to be run on the back of the board, all new wiring needs to be done on the back and should be 30awg wire MAX) to get the signal over to the proper side so the Guitars button will still function when pushed. Light Blue are where small holes, only big enough for the wire to fit thru, like needle size, will need to be drilled.

Then the wire needs to be jumpered from the White square to the other White square so that button then is on one set of the contacts and when the button is pushed it will work. The 2 Green squares are then where the wires will go and are your LED switch.

Pay no attention to the big Green square, it just means that's the Green button.

IPB Image

SERIOUSLY: Anyone wanting to try this, take your Guitar apart fisrt and look at this spot. This is a lot smaller than ya may think it is and if ya have any doubt in doing it, don't. It's not as difficult as some 360 controller work I've done or trace repair on DVD drives, but it is difficult none the less since you're confined to the small space between the contacts. Getting solder all over them is a right no-no as well, so cover the area you're not supposed to mess up (the gold colored parts of the contacts) cover them with some masking tape to keep the risk of getting solder all over them to a minimum.

#9 Aggression

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Posted 29 May 2007 - 03:29 AM

I understand how thick the buttons are. What I am doing is putting 6 3mm leds in each button and all 30 leds will be powered by a 12v plug in cord (rat shack). I am removing the phone jack and in place putting the other end of the plug-in cord in its place.

Edited by Aggression, 29 May 2007 - 03:32 AM.


#10 RDC

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Posted 29 May 2007 - 02:26 PM

QUOTE(Aggression @ May 28 2007, 11:05 PM) View Post

I understand how thick the buttons are. What I am doing is putting 6 3mm leds in each button and all 30 leds will be powered by a 12v plug in cord (rat shack). I am removing the phone jack and in place putting the other end of the plug-in cord in its place.

Have you lit a button up yet to see if it's really something ya wanna go forward with? I'd hate to see ya pull off all this work then not like how the thing looks when it was done. I hope you're using a fairly decent 12v power supply. The minimum load that will be drawn (provided you're using the typical 3mm 20mA LEDs) if some idgit pushes all of the buttons at one time will be pretty high. Which in game play will never happen, but someone is bound to do it sooner or later. wink.gif All of that extra wiring to the actual button with the LEDs in it is going to change how the buttons feel as well unless ya take extra care that they have enough slack to not push or pull on them too much.

Here's the next button, the Red one. It get's done basically the same way the Green one did.

IPB Image


Here is the Yellow button, if it looks like it gets wired up different, that's OK, because it does. This button has a trace that's common to both Red and Yellow, but we need to cut that trace for the LED switch, then reconnect it so the button signal still gets thru. The spot labeled with the "2" will have 2 wires at the spot, then each one will go to the other White squares to make those connections.

IPB Image


The Blue button is fairly easy (compared to everything so far), just traces to cut and you have the contacts seperated for the LED switch.

IPB Image


The Orange button is the absolute worst, because of the way the traces are laid out, and if you can do it the rest are pretty easy by comparison.

IPB Image


AGAIN: If you read thru this entire thread and didn't lay the X-acto knife to your Guitar yet, this mod DOES present the possibility of making the controller less sensitive and you may miss a note here or there because of it. Doing it this way removes half of the contact are for the button you're pressing and using it as the switch for the LEDs. There are alternate ways of doing this, such as adding another button that will be pressed when the Guitar button is pressed, but that sort of method will change how the buttons feel. If I wanted to do this the "correct" way I'd use some type of magnetic switch (similar to what the Dreamcast controllers use) so the contacts on the board are left completely alone, in fact that idea just occourred to me after I figured out the hard way of doing it, that's how it goes sometimes. wink.gif So if you're really serious about doing something like this, think about doing it with magnetic switches instead of hacking the board up, but that kinda thing comes with it's own downside as well, namely it's nowhere near as easy as hacking up the board and would require some thinkng and hunting for the correct parts, then the design and mounting and all to actually do it.

#11 101499

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Posted 29 May 2007 - 06:48 PM

sumthin like this would work: http://www.allelectr...ET_SWITCH_.html

just trim them down a bit so that they will fit

#12 RDC

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Posted 29 May 2007 - 06:53 PM

Those things are huge, even trimmed down they're way too big for this application, I used one for an XBOX mod once in the power buttons line so it wouldn't turn on unless ya had the "key" to it, then there was a backup switch hidden in back in case he lost it, but something like them yes. wink.gif

#13 101499

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Posted 29 May 2007 - 06:59 PM

yea good point. they will work at .75 inches away so they wouldnt work. u could replace the magnet but still.... u could also take away the curcuit board and replace it w/ push buttons.

#14 YUNG ERIC

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Posted 29 May 2007 - 10:58 PM

Here is something you might want to try. stop at a hobby shop and see if the have anything for making acrylic molds. make a mold of the buttons and get some clear Epoxy from a hardware store and if you take your time and follow directions you can make clear buttons. (also you could try dying the epoxy when you mix it to do translucent colors.)

P.S. @ RDC what type of 360 controller was common ground.

#15 Aggression

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Posted 30 May 2007 - 01:27 AM

a magnetic button sounds much easier, how would that work. (sry to b a noob but ive never screwed with nething like this)




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