installable internal apple bluetooth module any time soon?

Discussion in 'Macintosh Computers' started by harperb, Sep 19, 2004.

  1. harperb macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2004
    #1
    Hi,
    I just bought an iMac g5 and was disappointed to find out that the only way you can get bluetooth in them (aside from an external USB dongle) is to order it as a build-to-order custom option. Why doesn't apple offer a user-installable bluetooth card, like they do with airport express? Will one be available soon? I think this is the same situation with powerbooks and other macintoshes as well. This seems crazy. I hope there will be a solution or a workaround so that I (and everyone else) can have an internal bluetooth card in their macs if they so choose, without having to custom-order one, which takes several weeks to a month.

    Thanks!

    --Ben
     
  2. FuzzyBallz macrumors 6502a

    FuzzyBallz

    Joined:
    May 2, 2003
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    Home of Al-Qaida
    #2
    No kidding. It's only a small PCB module you can simply screw on, but I guess Apple thinks it's too complicated a project for the average computer user.
     
  3. t300 macrumors 6502a

    t300

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2004
    #3
    There must be some Apple parts retailer that will have these. It just seems logical...Maybe not, though.
     
  4. broken_keyboard macrumors 65816

    broken_keyboard

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2004
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    Secret Moon base
    #4
    There's a particular D-Link BT adapter you can buy and Apple provides a special firrmware for it. So once you've flashed it it's essentially an Apple part anyway. Of course one of your USB ports is used...
     
  5. thehuncamunca macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2003
    Location:
    NJ
    #5
    i'm suprised apple hasn't done so already
    apple needs to work on making their products more user accessible (ie on a PC laptop i could upgrade the HD memory add PC cards upgrade the graphics on certain high end laptops, on my ibook the only thing i can add is lousy memory which requires the keyboard and airport card to be removed not too accessable)

     
  6. Koodauw macrumors 68040

    Koodauw

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2003
    Location:
    Madison
    #6
    Is it really that simple? I thought the bluetooth came on the motherboards.
    Thus as it is onboard, you aren't able to do an "add-on"
     
  7. Finiksa macrumors 6502a

    Finiksa

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2003
    Location:
    Australia
    #7
    The Bluetooth module is a separate card, I've heard mention that the iMac G5 is integrated on the logic board but I won't believe that until I've seen the service manual for myself.

    The problem is the BT model also has a separate antennae and cable that have to be routed through the system making it extremely difficult for a user to install.
     
  8. Finiksa macrumors 6502a

    Finiksa

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2003
    Location:
    Australia
    #8
    After reading the service manual the BT module is indeed integrated onto the logic board.

    Seems a little odd considering how often BT tends to fail on other systems, but it does mean you cannot upgrade to BT without replacing the entire G5 Midplane.

    On the iMac G5 internal Bluetooth is definitely a BTO option only.
     
  9. mklos macrumors 68000

    mklos

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2002
    Location:
    My house!
    #9
    Its just a Module, like an AirPort Card. So if Apple allows for the user to add an AirPort/AirPort Extreme Card, it only makes sense to make the bluetooth module as an add on. It can't by that hard to plug into the logicboard and then plug-in some kind of antenna. It could be a cost saving measure for Apple. Imagine all the extra bluetooth modules Apple would have to have made.
     
  10. FuzzyBallz macrumors 6502a

    FuzzyBallz

    Joined:
    May 2, 2003
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    #10
    There was a news post on MR's front page w/ a link to a PDF showing a separate bluetooth module from the G5 mobo. Since I bought my G5 from the college bookstore, I don't have the BT, thus I can't confirm this. Perhap people who got BT through BTO can take a pic and confirm if the BT is part of the G5 mobo or a separate module.

    Apple should've included BT as part of the mobo. The G5's expensive as is, they should've throw the BT in free.
     
  11. Mord macrumors G4

    Mord

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2003
    Location:
    UK
    #11
    not quite you have to install loads of antenna's and cableing around the place.
     
  12. edesignuk Moderator emeritus

    edesignuk

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2002
    Location:
    London, England
    #12
    Why? BT modules can be as small as the little USB dongles, why would you need to route antennas rond if they can make them work within a tiny bit of plastcic like the dongles. Doesn't make sense.
     
  13. mklos macrumors 68000

    mklos

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    Dec 4, 2002
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    My house!
    #13
    Well Apple can make it so that the computers are assembled with the cables already in place, like the AirPort Extreme antenna cable. There's absolutely no reason why Apple can't make an internal bluetooth module a BTO option.
     
  14. Counterfit macrumors G3

    Counterfit

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    #14
    Actually, you can replace anything you want in an iBook, HD, logic board, optical drive, memory, keyboard... basically any part if you feel up to it. The difference is, the part you put in, and any problems Apple feels are caused by it, aren't covered under warranty (with a very very very few exceptions)
     
  15. Finiksa macrumors 6502a

    Finiksa

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2003
    Location:
    Australia
    #15
    Faraday cage! there's a huge difference between getting a weak Bluetooth signal to penetrate a few millimeters of plastic and getting it to penetrate the EM shielding inside the computer. Internal BT needs an antennae outside the faraday cage.

    Just to be clear about the iMac G5 you can't upgrade the BT it's an integrated part of the Midplane, you'd have to buy the entire assembly to get internal BT.

    Apple replacement parts are MidPlane 661-3295, No Bluetooth, 1.8 GHz or 661-3314, with Bluetooth, 1.8 GHz.
     
  16. FuzzyBallz macrumors 6502a

    FuzzyBallz

    Joined:
    May 2, 2003
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    #16
    Midplane... haha, that's fresh.

    Steve: "Motherboard? That sounds so PC, so inferior, our fanatics might not like it."
    Crony #1: "How about Appleboard?"
    Steve: "Sounds nice, but that sounds too cocky and egocentric."
    Crony #2: "Let's call it midplane then."
    Steve: "I have no frigging idea what that means, but I like it."
     
  17. Finiksa macrumors 6502a

    Finiksa

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2003
    Location:
    Australia
    #17
    What, Logic Board not Mac enough?

    The Midplane Assembly is more than just the logic board anyway, it includes the G5 CPU, support frame, fans, bluetooth, speakers and cabling.

    There are only 10 service parts that go together to make an iMac G5.
     
  18. The Past macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2004
    #18
    I think it is also cheaper to buy the bundle (BT, keyboard, and mouse) when you BTO than it is to get the module (+antenna, which together will run about $100) and the keyboard and mouse.
     
  19. The Past macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2004
    #19
    Also, I think iMac's are not made keeping upgrades in mind. If you have a PowerMac, you can get a BT module and antenna separately and have them installed. Does not have to be at the time of order because I saw those boxed parts at our local store.
     
  20. RGunner macrumors 6502a

    RGunner

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2002
    Location:
    Midnight Sun
    #20
    Bluetooth Module Answer (internal, this is NOT the USB dongle).

    From this photo:

    http://www.apple.com/pr/photos/imacflat/04imac.html

    You can see the little board about 3/4" by 1" is attached via 2 screws in opposite corners just like my G5 and the MDD (FW800) PowerMacs. The board can be installed on any PowerMac G5 or iMac G5 (I have done it on the FW800 Machine). The antenna's were in place on the G5 as well as the FW800 machine without ordering the BT antenna option. All you need is a service provider to supply you the part (spendy...) and you have internal Bluetooth.

    IT IS NOT SOLDERED onto the Logic Board.

     
  21. Xenious macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2004
    Location:
    Texas, USA
    #21
    My vote is they should just build it in to every Mac and increase the price to cover the costs. That way you don't have to hassle at all with BTO. I wonder how many units they sell BTO /w bluetooth versus stock?
    -jim
     
  22. Sneeper macrumors regular

    Sneeper

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2004
    Location:
    San Francisco
    #22
    Oh are we voting? Someone tell Steve it's a democracy. :)

    Apple knows that thousand-dollar boundaries have a strange effect on people. $1999 seems a lot less than $2049, even though it's only $50 less. A lot of people are willing to buy a machine for $1999 and not $2049.

    The truth is the vast majority of Mac users do *not* use bluetooth and making all of them having to spend $50 extra so you don't have to do BTO (or buy a USB bluetooth adapter) seems a bit unfair.
     

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