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Create Magnetic Adapter
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Old 01/15/2013, 11:42 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Has anyone attempted to create their own Veer Magnetic Audio Adapter?

I am considering on attempting this as they are becoming very difficult to locate and the ones you can find are a bit pricey. I would open up the one I have but not willing to damage it as of yet.
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Old 01/15/2013, 03:24 PM   #2 (permalink)
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If you create a DIY on this you'll earn a place in the Hall of Fame.

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Old 01/15/2013, 05:27 PM   #3 (permalink)
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This should be very easy.

For the housing, take the original adapter and stick some rolled up paper into the headphone jack, then cover the outer surfaces (except for the contacts side) with silicone gel and let it set. Be sure to have enough silicone from each side, at least a half inch thickness, to make sure that the mold we are making will not deform easily.

I'm pretty sure an off-the-shelf headphone jack can be bough somewhere, but it has to be the stereo+mic kind. I don't yet know where i could borrow wire to create the connector pins from scratch, but after soldering together the whole setup, use the silicone mold to create a new housing with black epoxy.

I know this is somewhat vague, but i hope it gives a general idea. If i had one of those adapters, it would be a little easier.



If anyone cares to make this a large-scale effort, it would make sense to send an adapter to MoldMuse @ Etsy and have her make a silicone mold professionally. (see: Flower Cabochon Mold Roses Asst Sizes Flexible by MoldMuse)

For the best result the adapter may have to be sent disassembled, but then some has to be done anyway...

Then.. perfect and standardize the electronics side, order parts in bulk and make OEM-grade magnetic adapters to sell on Amazon for a reasonable price, ~$7.00.

I'm not sure which side is magnetic, the phone or the adapter, so if a tiny neodymium magnet is needed, that will have to be taken care of as well before we have a fully working prototype...

Last edited by Remy X; 01/15/2013 at 06:00 PM.
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Old 01/15/2013, 06:40 PM   #4 (permalink)
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This should be very easy.

For the housing, take the original adapter and stick some rolled up paper into the headphone jack, then cover the outer surfaces (except for the contacts side) with silicone gel and let it set. Be sure to have enough silicone from each side, at least a half inch thickness, to make sure that the mold we are making will not deform easily.

I'm pretty sure an off-the-shelf headphone jack can be bough somewhere, but it has to be the stereo+mic kind. I don't yet know where i could borrow wire to create the connector pins from scratch, but after soldering together the whole setup, use the silicone mold to create a new housing with black epoxy.

I know this is somewhat vague, but i hope it gives a general idea. If i had one of those adapters, it would be easier.



If anyone cares to make this a large-scale effort, it would make sense to send an adapter to MoldMuse @ Etsy and have her make a silicone mold professionally. (see: Flower Cabochon Mold Roses Asst Sizes Flexible by MoldMuse)

For the best result the adapter may have to be disassembled, but we'll see.

Then, perfect and standardize the electronics side, order parts in bulk and make OEM-grade magnetic adapters to sell on Amazon for a reasonable price, ~$7.00.

I'm not sure which side is magnetic, the phone or the adapter, so if a tiny neodymium magnet is needed, that will have to be taken care of as well....
Good ideas here.
The magnetic side is on the connector. I find it attaching itself to anything metal.
I will attempt into looking. I just need to get a couple more adapters to take apart. I am not to keen on taking my only one apart as I like it to much. I have seen a couple for sale here and there but they want a good $20 for them.
We will see if my recent contact is able to send me a couple that they say they have laying around.
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Old 01/15/2013, 06:55 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Toadfrogjr View Post
Good ideas here.
The magnetic side is on the connector. I find it attaching itself to anything metal.
I will attempt into looking. I just need to get a couple more adapters to take apart. I am not to keen on taking my only one apart as I like it to much. I have seen a couple for sale here and there but they want a good $20 for them.
We will see if my recent contact is able to send me a couple that they say they have laying around.
Maybe we can talk to Enda at HP to see if they still have any left at the warehouse... i'm sure he understands that there's a real need for replacement adapters, that $20 is just too much...

Hmm... if we get this all working, we can cast housings in two colors... black and white, to match the phone colors...

And if we get this project done, later we can even make a clip-on magnetic flash for the Veer. That would be 100 times more difficult due to having to program a controller chip, but if there's anyone willing and able to help, it's definitely doable... a bluetooth headset battery from China, a LED, a housing, a controller... and that's it. We can use the audio interface to communicate with the controller...

I know i'm going too far with this, but there's enough demand to sell at least 50 units, so it's not a worthless proof-of-concept... and then if this were done when the Veer launched, by now a couple thousand units would have sold quite easily....

Last edited by Remy X; 01/15/2013 at 07:02 PM.
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Old 01/15/2013, 07:15 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Maybe we can talk to Enda at HP to see if they still have any left at the warehouse... i'm sure he understands that there's a real need for replacement adapters, that $20 is just too much...

Hmm... if we get this all working, we can cast housings in two colors... black and white, to match the phone colors...

And if we get this project done, later we can even make a clip-on magnetic flash for the Veer. That would be 100 times more difficult due to having to program a controller chip, but if there's anyone willing and able to help, it's definitely doable... a bluetooth headset battery from China, a LED, a housing, a controller... and that's it. We can use the audio interface to communicate with the controller...

I know i'm going too far with this, but there's enough demand to sell at least 50 units, so it's not a worthless proof-of-concept... and then if this were done when the Veer launched, by now a couple thousand units would have sold quite easily....
I must admit the flash or at least flashlight part of it sound very intriguing. I will look into seeing if that connection only receives power or if it can perhaps give power as well.
Me personally would be interested in the idea of an "all-in-one" magnetic connector

Built-in flash or flashlight with 3.5mm headphone jack does truly seem worth looking into.

If in fact the phone can provide as a power source for the light, we could then toss away the battery and very likely have someone do a small patch/program to allow the light to be turned on and off just like that LED Torch in preware.
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Old 01/15/2013, 07:46 PM   #7 (permalink)
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In any case, i think there's enough demand for those headphone adapters to justify building them at a professional level, without cutting any corners...

We can poll the userbase here to see how many potential buyers we'd have. As an "insurance policy" the adapters can be sold in multiples of two or three.

Once we have a rough estimate of demand, more than one silicone mold can be ordered from MoldMuse, as well as knowing how many headphone jacks to buy in one batch, magnets, and any other supplies (clear plastic bags, etc) or components.

Since this would become a little too expensive for a hobby project and strays into business territory, at some point donations could be taken that would convert to pre-orders... Kickstarter-style?

Hmm.. This demands some serious research, but i definitely think it's worth the effort, whether it's within our community or as a product to list on Amazon....
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Old 01/15/2013, 07:48 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Toadfrogjr View Post
I must admit the flash or at least flashlight part of it sound very intriguing. I will look into seeing if that connection only receives power or if it can perhaps give power as well.
Me personally would be interested in the idea of an "all-in-one" magnetic connector

Built-in flash or flashlight with 3.5mm headphone jack does truly seem worth looking into.

If in fact the phone can provide as a power source for the light, we could then toss away the battery and very likely have someone do a small patch/program to allow the light to be turned on and off just like that LED Torch in preware.
Oops...I didn't see that you replied.

Usually USB ports like this are one-sided, hence the need for a power source when connecting a flash drive to the Touchpad

But another magnetic product i'd love is a magnetic microUSB jack... so i could take it anywhere without having to take the long cable with me...
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Old 01/15/2013, 08:04 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I think diversifying our offerings would be great from a business standpoint...

I know that the Veer is "dead", unsupported hardware, but since everyone loses magnetic adapters, we'll have another two years or so of repeat purchases if people can just find us... they'll lose the OEM adapters, they'll lose ours, they'll lose our camera flash module and come back for more...

And having the cordless USB adapter allows one to use all those fancy colored flat USB cables, something that fashion-conscious Veer owners might appreciate....

Ok.... now that i think about it, the USB adapter and the camera Flash need to be merged into one.... since the flash battery has to be charged, and quickly. So you can charge the phone with a fancy purple cable and at the same time charge the flash.

I figure that the flash module is better off being separate from the headphone jack, since it's easier to use the audio out and mic leads to trigger the flash than to use a USB controller, although the tiny bluetooth radios that are almost flush with a USB port use one...

If we go the audio route, we'll need to know which audio side fails after the 2.2.4 upgrade... Perhaps audio can be used to charge a flat flash battery, or provide enough power for a USB controller (crazy useless, unless...)

...unless we take one of those tiny USB microSD readers and integrate that into the camera flash module.... and pictures could be written to the memory card...

A charger module with flash and microSD definitely sounds interesting if we can pull this off....
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Old 01/15/2013, 08:14 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Perhaps you guys are right but this doesn't sound at all easy to me. The adapter will have to be molded to the exact side profile of the Veer to fit tightly against it. The magnets will need to be exactly the size and shape to fit into the recessed areas on the Veer to prevent the adapter from moving around. True, you could use smaller magnets and build up the rest of the shape out of the molded material but will it then be held strongly enough to the side? You'll need to design and assemble some sort of internal structure to hold the five spring-loaded contact pins and ensure a pretty tight tolerance on the alignment of all these parts.

As an alternative, it looks like the USB cables are quite a bit easier to find. Maybe something could be done by cannibalizing the magnetic connectors off of those?
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Old 01/15/2013, 08:23 PM   #11 (permalink)
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A fancy and irreplaceable device in more than one case color... sounds like i'm dreaming

But another "dreamy" out of reach product for the Veer that would be nice to have would be a "hard case" with the front rim in gloss black, with a cheap unpainted backside being wrapped in thin leather.

Inside it, have a slim-line headphone jack (that might have to be created ) made from a collapsible silicone pocket and metal "leaf springs".... The case would also have a built-in flash LED at the correct location.

I'm not so sure about powering the LED, but i'm just dreaming here, it's a concept... a "skin" for the Veer with all of the goodies we want.... perhaps the case's battery can fit right over the magnetic adapter location, acting as a "door" to keep dirt out as well.... use ribbon cables inside the case.....

Hmm.. maybe the concept it not so bad....

================


@trwrt,

The charging cables would be cheaper to take apart and play with, but i'm thinking that aside from the pins, the rest should be easy.

Silicone molds are very precise, and epoxy is very fluid, so the housing should come out flawless.

Make the housing shell, then put the innards in and secure them with more epoxy...

Perhaps our connector mechanism would be of a slightly lower quality, but the rest is pretty straightforward and easy to come by
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Old 01/15/2013, 08:28 PM   #12 (permalink)
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@RemyX
What audio issue? Mine works perfectly for the Veer 2.2.4 update.

@twrt
I have thought about that, but the supply of those are probably very limited as well.
You are correct in it possibly "not being all that easy" The hardest part is determining how you will accomplish and with what resources.
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Old 01/15/2013, 08:39 PM   #13 (permalink)
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@RemyX
What audio issue? Mine works perfectly for the Veer 2.2.4 update.

@twrt
I have thought about that, but the supply of those are probably very limited as well.
You are correct in it possibly "not being all that easy" The hardest part is determining how you will accomplish and with what resources.
Some people have reported that under 2.2.4 the headphone audio breaks, so it becomes mono instead of stereo. I'm not sure if they are talking about a mixing issue (both sides playing the same) or say the left side stops working and only the right has any sound.

So with that in mind, i'm thinking that if one lead stops working then it needs to be kept in mind...


But... i found a very nice hi-res photo of the charging connector...

http://www.netbooknews.com/wp-conten...eer4G-8750.jpg

So with that i might be able to look for the right size neodymium magnet, or maybe even a neodymium polymer-bound magnet that could be cut with a razor blade (not sure if those exist, but never hurts to check)
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Old 01/15/2013, 08:42 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Wait a minute... i think the pin pattern is the same as microUSB, so that would mean the audio adapter might have an audio chip over USB in there.... if so, we'll need to find a suitable replacement....

So if we do anything crazy or creative, perhaps flash doesn't need to be self-powered after all... but a USB controller with more than one device chip on it (a hub) would be needed.... one for audio, one for camera Flash, and possibly one for microSD...

I know this isn't easy, i'm just striving for accuracy, so that we'd know our limits and what to look for....

Edit:

Here's the article for that image: Future iOS Devices Could Replace 30-Pin Connector with MagSafe, HP Veer Did it First | Netbooknews - Netbooks, Netbook Reviews, Smartbooks and more

Last edited by Remy X; 01/15/2013 at 08:49 PM.
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Old 01/15/2013, 08:49 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Wait a minute... i think the pin pattern is the same as microUSB, so that would mean the audio adapter might have an audio chip over USB in there.... if so, we'll need to find a suitable replacement....
If you are just comparing from the outside then yes the pin-out will look the same, however, that doesn't mean all of those pins are used for the headphones like they might be used for the power
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Old 01/15/2013, 08:51 PM   #16 (permalink)
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If you are just comparing from the outside then yes the pin-out will look the same, however, that doesn't mean all of those pins are used for the headphones like they might be used for the power
I'm saying there's a possibility that the headphone adapter takes USB signal and uses a chip to convert that to analog audio.... same thing as with Apple's G4 Cube, which didn't have an on-board soundcard....


If it does indeed use a chip, then it is a two-way powered USB port, so for flash we'll only need a modest-sized capacitor (or not even that) instead of a full-sized bluetooth headset battery

In this case it might be possible to "flatten out" the assembly to create a snap-on hard case with a built-in audio jack and flash...
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Old 01/15/2013, 08:55 PM   #17 (permalink)
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I'm saying there's a possibility that the headphone adapter takes USB signal and uses a chip to convert that to analog audio.... same thing as with Apple's G4 Cube, which didn't have an on-board soundcard....
I understand what you are saying now.
Well there is a good chance I will have 2 sent my direction in the next week. So if that happens I will be able to try it out. I also found a couple USB magnetic connectors for fairly cheap to. Will be able to use one of those as well if needed.
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Old 01/15/2013, 08:57 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Old 01/15/2013, 09:08 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Hey, look at this... K&J Magnetics - Products

That might not be the right size, but it's just to show that a "magsafe"-compatible size does exist, even if we lose the rounded corners...

Those were rectangular blocks, now here are some cylinders...

http://www.kjmagnetics.com/products.asp?cat=191


We can look what other manufacturers offer as well
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Old 01/16/2013, 10:00 AM   #20 (permalink)
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I am off Thursday and Friday so perhaps I will be able to make some calls and find some information
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