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  1.    #1  
    Link to the dissassembly thread

    My digitizer went bad on my phone, so I ended up swapping the digitizer from an old Treo 650 screen to mine. (FYI, the screen is not compatible, but the digitizer is!). To do this, you are pretty much pulling the phone apart!

    On dissassembly: The screw under the rubber pad (I think antenna hole) has the paper warranty voider on it.

    #1 Ribbon connectors

    Be very careful on taking the ribbon out. Very gingerly open the little flap over the ribbon. For some reason, the flap on the keyboard connector seems to be weaker than the others. If you break the flap, you can still use it (in fact you must use it!) when you put the ribbon back in, but apply a piece of tape.

    #2 Ribbon connector for the screen

    The ribbon connector for the screen is very sensative to even slight misalignment. Before re-assembling anything else, and after each step of re-assembly, you must press a battery to the battery prongs and ensure you get the palm logo. If you get nothing, or only back lighting, go back and install the ribbon for the screen again.

    #3 Changing the digitizer

    If your screen is scratched, it is actually the digitizer. The Treo 650 digitizer is the same as the Treo680. I also found a guy on ebay selling only digitizers for around $20. Dissassemble to the point of taking the screen out. Then take the tape off. You'll notice 2 ribbons. The smaller one is for the digitizer. carefully remove the ribbon. Using a very thin knife or very thin flat screw driver, pry the outer metal back on the edges. The digitizer will then pop off. Make sure you install the new digitizer the same direction. Re-connect the little cable and re-assemble phone.

    #4 Keyboard and cover

    I bought a replacement case (It was from a demo phone). It came with the keyboard and all buttons. You have to keep your actual keyboard circuit board, but the new bottons will work fine. Don't forget to swap in the ear speaker.

    For the back cover, I opted to only change the camera cover part. The rest has your serial number and IMEI number (if you do change the center part of the case, make sure you transfer all of the accessories and move your SN tag). There are 3 plastic prongs holding the camera cover on. The demo cover had a black hole the same size as the phone. It wouldn't come out, so I left it in place. It didn't affect the camera operation. Do not forget to move the speaker phone speaker over to the new case.

    #5 Mute Switch and IR cover

    To re-install the mute switch and IR cover, hold the 2 circuit boards together. Install the switch so that the open end is towards the actual switch. Make sure you have them working together (I usually try it a couple of times to make sure the switch is working). Now install the switch end of the cover and then the other end, making sure the middle tang is on the outside of the circuit boards. Once this is done, the 2 boards should be held together nicely.

    #6 More screen ribbon connector stuff

    Getting the screen ribbon connector to sit in the correct position isn't easy. Getting it to stay afterwards can be maddening! After you install the ribbon, use a piece of tape to hold it in place (there was one on it for a reason!). Test the screen using a battery held against the battery prongs. If you don't get a palm logo, it's not in properly. I find that flattening/smoothing the ribbon out a little helps. You want it to go all the way in and be straight when you close the little flap. Tape it quickly, because movement can make the angle change!

    After testing, put the metal cover back on the circuit board, then test again. If that works move to the next step.

    #7 Keyboard ribbon connector

    The keyboard ribbon isn't too hard to get in, but the flap door seems to be weaker. If the flap breaks, you still need it! Just tape over it once you've installed it, to keep it closed.

    #8 Closing up the phone

    Let the side buttons sit in the case and let gravity keep them in place while you slip the phone over them.

    Install the plastic piece around the bottom connector last, after everything else. It will be the last operation.

    Install the 2 top case screws first. I then check full phone operation, including the microphone. You can use the voice recorder to check the microphone. If the microphone isn't working, it may have shifted a little. It has to connect to the bullseye on the circuitboard with the 2 prongs. You can try shifting the rubber connector around a bit until the mircophone works.

    Side note, the microphone for the 650 has a different impeadance than the 650. It will sort of work, but the sound level is very very low.

    Finally, carefully install the plastic piece on the bottom and position the holes so the screws can line up. Do this WITH the battery in place. You may need to pry the case apart a little to get it to go. Make sure you have the microphone lined up. Don't force it in, as you may mess up the microphone. Put the screws in and re-test the microphone. If the micrphone doesn't work, pull the bottom piece out and adjust the microphone above and try again.

    Hope this helps!
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  2. SoTacMatt's Avatar
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    Nice job!
    I wish you had this before I did my case swap.
  3.    #3  
    I swapped my case and keyboard buttons, since I dropped it a few times and it looked kinda crappy. I also have recently purchased 3 dead phones and turned them into 2 working phones, total cost around $200. I figured I'd share the knowledge.

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  4. #4  
    I want to take off the LCD from the digitizer, but it looks like one scary job.

    Any pics or videos that will help me?

    Thank you
  5.    #5  
    Quote Originally Posted by E2EK1EL View Post
    I want to take off the LCD from the digitizer, but it looks like one scary job.

    Any pics or videos that will help me?

    Thank you

    Hope this helps
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  6. #6  
    I got the digitzire pulled off the LCD screen ....

    Now I have the hardest time re connecting the 2 little ribbon cable. They are so hard to place back in, you have to use some serious hard pressure ....

    how did you get them back in? (Digitzire & screen ribbons)
    Last edited by E2EK1EL; 01/04/2008 at 02:28 AM.
  7. #7  
    Quote Originally Posted by red-beard View Post
    #6 More screen ribbon connector stuff
    Test the screen using a battery held against the battery prongs. If you don't get a palm logo, it's not in properly. I find that flattening/smoothing the ribbon out a little helps. You want it to go all the way in and be straight when you close the little flap. Tape it quickly, because movement can make the angle change!
    Basically, I have a broken the screen, then I brought a replacement from ebay. But every time when I try to connect the new screen, I can't see the palm logo, not even once. I have push the ribbon right in and all I get is a blank screen(in black/dark color) with very dim light. I am sure it's on and the palm seems working fine and with the sound of the phone follow.

    But I just can't see the palm logo no matter what I do. And I am still using the treo with the broken screen which mean I know how to connect the ribbon back in.

    I'm began to think there is a problem with the screen I brought from ebay.

    Any comments, suggestion, anyone??
  8.    #8  
    Keep trying. If you get some backlighting, you are close. I've had a couple of times of frustration as well.
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  9. #9  
    so you recognize there isn't any problem with the screen and all I need is to keep try?

    Do you have any more tips for what I need to make the ribbon connect properly ?

    Have been using the Treo with a broken screen for 2 weeks now....
  10.    #10  
    I smooth out the cable out a bit, and then keep the 2 parts at a 90 degree angle to give maximum length. Push the cable in as far as it will go, then flip down the flap.
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  11. #11  
    I dropped my Treo 680, and smashed the screen. So I ordered a replacement from

    The little video on the vendor website shows you how to get the phone apart, but it ends there. Without this thread, I wouldn't have had a paryer. As it is, it didn't work out for me.

    That screen ribbon connector is a bear. The flap that secures it came flying off at one point. I got it back on, and on about the fiftieth try I actually got a Palm logo after getting the motherboard back in position.

    Then came connecting the keyboard ribbon. Sure enough, the flap for that came off too, and it did not want to go back on. But I still had the Palm logo, so I kept on trying. I finally got the keyboard ribbon in place, with the broken flap taped over it, and of course, at that point discovered I had a dark screen again.

    So back I went to the screen ribbon attachment step. This time, the flap for it came off again, and when I tried to reposition it, the piece just broke in half. I can't see getting anywhere without that part working, so I guess the Treo is just cooked. And, of course, I'm out the cost of the new screen. (No returns.)
  12. #12  
    So sorry to hear that ...

    I had to replace my screen when I tried to remove the dust from it. I completed the task, but couldn't get the ribbon cables back onto the screen & digitize. Had to buy a new screen.

    You wanna sell that screen? Hit me up on PM pls
  13. #13  
    Just a quite note about the little ribbon connector that hooks up the digitiser to the screen. To get the ribbon back into the connector you have to open the connector up from the other end, because the hinge is at the front where the ribbon goes in, so poke a very small flat screwdriver blade at the opposite end to the opening for the ribbon and it'll pop open.
    I almost broke mine before I realised that :<
  14.    #14  
    I think most people are having problems with ribbon from the screen to the main board, not the digitizer ribbon.

    Thanks for chiming in Tom! That one is a pain too! In fact, all of the ribbon connectors are pretty cheesy!
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  15. #15  
    Hey everyone,
    I need to replace the ribbon cable latch on my 680 as they broke off (brittle)I've been trying to get the part number and where to buy. I took one to the repair shop they replaced the latches on that one for $45 ( ) what the heck!!! anyways I have another 680 and I want to find the latch myself and do the job.. PLEASE ANYONE..I called Palm they were as helpful as a screen door on a submarine anyways looking forward to getting some real help here...Thanks in advaced.

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