Kindle 2 Teardown

Teardown

Teardown

Teardowns provide a look inside a device and should not be used as disassembly instructions.

Our Kindle 2 shipped on Monday, February 23rd, a day early. Thanks to UPS Next Day Air, we have the reader in our hands Tuesday morning.

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Edit Step 1 Kindle 2 Teardown  ¶ 

  • It's here!

  • Thanks to the magic of E-Ink, the Kindle comes with setup instructions displayed on the screen itself. No plugging in is required.

  • We'll post updates on twitter about interesting things that we discover as we go.

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Edit Step 2  ¶ 

  • What comes in the box:

    • A quick start guide, complete with embossed letters

    • An AC adapter

    • The Kindle 2

  • Conveniently, the AC adapter can be used with either a wall outlet or a USB port.

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Edit Step 3  ¶ 

  • Size comparison: Definitely not as big as a 17" MacBook Pro Unibody.

  • The Kindle 2 weighs only 10.2 ounces. Per pound, that makes the Kindle 2 even more expensive than the $2,799 MacBook Pro 17" Unibody we took apart last week.

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Edit Step 4  ¶ 

  • The back. Nothing special about it.

  • Note the speaker holes on the bottom. We briefly tried the Text-to-Speech feature and were very impressed by the Kindle 2's ability to read the text displayed on-screen. But the honeymoon was quickly over and we started tearing into it.

  • Hopefully the insides will be more exciting... We'll let you know as soon as we can!

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Edit Step 5  ¶ 

  • Prying the back off...

  • Getting inside is easy once you know how. We used some plastic opening tools and a metal spudger, and finally managed to get in.

  • The matte-gray top cover comes off first.

  • There are two Phillips screws to remove before the Aluminum back can be removed entirely.

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Edit Step 6  ¶ 

  • We're in!

  • It's still not very pretty; just more white plastic.

  • Twenty Phillips screws hold the white plastic paneling in place.

  • Interestingly, nothing was attached to the large white and brown connector near the top of the board.

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Edit Step 7  ¶ 

  • Remove two Phillips screws and the battery lifts out easily.

  • The battery is Model No. S11S01A. It's a 3.7 V, 1530 mAh lithium polymer battery. The battery weighs in at 31 grams, just over 10% of the Kindle's total weight.

  • The wireless card is also easily removable by removing two Phillips screws.

  • There are two antenna ports on the wireless card, but there was nothing connected to the AUX port in our Kindle.

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Edit Step 8  ¶ 

  • After removing sixteen more screws, we've made it to the main PCB.

  • Everything exciting is still beneath silver EMI shields.

  • The Kindle was designed by Lab126, a secretive Amazon subsidiary based in Cupertino that designs consumer devices. Thus far, they have only released the Kindle 1 and 2.

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Edit Step 9  ¶ 

  • Lifting the logic board and display assembly out of its plastic housing.

  • There is no protective covering over the display. The display seen from the outside is the actual E-Ink panel.

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Edit Step 10  ¶ 

  • Even with the battery completely removed, the screen displays a crystal clear image.

  • The display is held by a "window frame" of adhesive. Gentle prods and twists from all sides with a plastic opening tool separated the display.

  • Removing the display reveals a bunch of vias on the PCB. Nothing too terribly exciting.

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Edit Step 11  ¶ 

  • The logic board after removing the silver EMI shields.

  • The majority of the larger chips are made by Freescale, Samsung and Epson.

  • On the center-left side of the board is an outline of a SIM card with empty headers. Amazon left a opening in the plastic framework revealing this region. Was this left in for development and debugging?

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Edit Step 12  ¶ 

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Edit Step 13  ¶ 

  • The main processor is in the upper left. The Freescale chip is labeled MCIMX31LVKN5C M91E CTAH0850V. It's a 532 MHz, ARM-11 90nm 14mm package.

  • To the right of the processor, the Samsung K4X1G323PC is a 32MB mobile DDR SDRAM chip. There another Samsung SDRAM chip in the lower right.

  • The large Samsung package in the lower left is the Kindle's main memory. It's a 2 GB moviNAND package, which includes both flash memory and the cotroller.

  • The co-branded Epson and E-Ink chip on the right is the display controller. It is a PFBGA package that supports "high speed screen updates (2048x1536 at 50Hz+)."

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Edit Step 14  ¶ 

  • The complete disassembly of the Kindle 2.

  • It seems to be the type of device that people will not bother modding... Or will they? Only time will tell.

Required Tools

Phillips #0 Screwdriver

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Plastic Opening Tools

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Comments Comments are onturn off

Hello everybody,

Do anybody know how is the "Text To Speech" implemented?. I've read they finally don't include this functionality, but i'm wondering if they've done by hardware (with a TTS SoC like Sensory) or by Software.

Thank you!

DGS

diegogs, · Reply

hey guys great post. Any idea how or where I can get a HIgh resolution image near the USB connector. I think I knocked off a capacitor or resistor for the kindle 2 model from Lab26 model D00701, just looking to put the part back on but need to confirm the location

since there are other NO LOADs (parts that are not populated).

thanks, Phil

donfelipe, · Reply

Please explain exactly what you are prying on with the tools. I can only see what looks like metal tabs extending inward from the cover, like the cover is finally locked down by bending those 4 tabs (2 per hole). Are you releasing a tab or something or just prying the cover off?

sziker, · Reply

That's a standard mini-PCIe WWAN (EVDO) card - perhaps one could scope the AT commands being sent to the card, then insert the card into PC and send the same AT commands for unlimited (free) data...

Also, there's a missing SIM holder below the WWAN card - this means a GSM/UMTS version of the Kindle is planned!

tnkgrl, · Reply

Quote from tnkgrl:

That's a standard mini-PCIe WWAN (EVDO) card - perhaps one could scope the AT commands being sent to the card, then insert the card into PC and send the same AT commands for unlimited (free) data...

Also, there's a missing SIM holder below the WWAN card - this means a GSM/UMTS version of the Kindle is planned!

It's a Novotel E725 Mini PCIe card. Despite the "E727NV" - the FCC ID of that card is the Novotel E725. In theory you'd just need the proper drivers and the modem's dialing strings/connection info from the unit itself, which may or may not be hard to find.

missingyes, · Reply

Also, the 'white and brown' connector you note is most likely the debugging connector, just as was on the Kindle 1.

missingyes, · Reply

Quote from tnkgrl:

Also, there's a missing SIM holder below the WWAN card - this means a GSM/UMTS version of the Kindle is planned!

that looks more like an SD card outline to me.

cepler, · Reply

The Expedite E725 EVDO PCI-e card also contains a built-in GPS (real + assisted) as far as I can tell from reading the specs.

cshepley, · Reply

Quote from cepler:

that looks more like an SD card outline to me.

No, it is a SIM connector, a SD connector wouldn't make sense in that place, and SD connectors have more pins

SIM: http://www.allproducts.com/computer/yiku...

SD: http://www.allproducts.com/computer/yiku...

Maavin, · Reply

Does the Kindle 2 still function as a reader if you remove the wireless card?

GeorgeMc, · Reply

I can see there is a antenna connect to PCIe card on upper left corner. Do you know whether this antenna is tailor-made one or standard part? If it is standard part, what is its brand name of antenna?

woody, · Reply

How is the display connected to the PCB? Can you show a side view?

Chris Cline, · Reply

Quote from Locke:

How is the display connected to the PCB? Can you show a side view?

The orange display ribbon wraps around the edge of the logic board and connects with a ZIF connector. We added a photo on this step with a side view that shows the display connector.

Luke Soules, · Reply

Is the display glued to the logic board? How hard would it be to remove?

Chris Cline, · Reply

Quote from Locke:

Is the display glued to the logic board? How hard would it be to remove?

The display is adhered to the logic board, but we were able to remove it without damaging either the logic board or display.

Luke Soules, · Reply

Quote from luke:

The display is adhered to the logic board, but we were able to remove it without damaging either the logic board or display.

Just wanted to add a couple of comments to Luke's reply...

With a careful hand you can separate the display from the logic board in less than ten minutes. Just pry carefully on all sides. However, note that the display has a front bezel that attaches via several little "bumps" on all sides. If you're trying to remove the display, make sure not to dislodge the display's bezel by mistake, since the bezel will warp very easily and will have to be replaced.

Miroslav Djuric, · Reply

Question, the wireless adapter in the kindle, looks strangely identical to Mini-PCI, if not Mini-PCIe, would it be plausible to take that and insert like normal on a PC? Wouldn't that be a sure way to tether? lmao.

just my 2 cents

ranmasaotome510, · Reply

Quote from miro:

Just wanted to add a couple of comments to Luke's reply...

With a careful hand you can separate the display from the logic board in less than ten minutes. Just pry carefully on all sides. However, note that the display has a front bezel that attaches via several little "bumps" on all sides. If you're trying to remove the display, make sure not to dislodge the display's bezel by mistake, since the bezel will warp very easily and will have to be replaced.

Miro,

These Kindle 2's are slippery and not forgiving when you drop them. I've lost the screen on mine. It still reads but the background is very grey ... hard to read the black type. Amazon wants $200 to repair. I wonder if I can find the parts and replace them myself. Or if there is a way to reverse the type from black on white to white on dark grey. What do you think?

jjimbo

jjimbo, · Reply

Very new to this ...

I also have a broken screen on a K2 [out of warranty]. Is there anyone out there repairing them?

sdfg,

Could you provide the input capacitance value connected to the Vbus of micro USB?

kb15, · Reply

Hi,

is it correct the Kindle2 comes without a physical SIM-card, with other words the SIM seems to be emulated somehow?

Thank you

Dietmar, · Reply

Please see

http://vdc.epson.com/index.php?option=co...

for info on the EPSON chip.

nowei, · Reply

Hi,

K4X1G323PC is IMHO a 128MB chip:

it has 1G density and it's internal organization is x32, what makes it a 32Mx32 according to this document: http://www.samsung.com/global/system/bus...

But still, 1Gbit / 8 = 128MB.

nevertheless: you would not expect less than 128MB paired with such a processor installed...

Correct me if I am wrong.

mfilipowa, · Reply

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