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This review was done by http://www.xbox-info.com/
Buy your Cheapmod modchips from Divineo
The package contained:
One - Cheapmod Chip
One - Length of Kynar wire
One - 16 pin gold plated LPC header plug
The Cheapmod chip kits arrived well packaged and secured
in a bubble-padded envelope, each Cheapmod chip kit was individually
packed in a zip lock bag. The delivery time was excellent.
The Cheapmod mod chip is based on Andy Green aka Numbnut's
cheapmod solution utilizing the SST49LF020 a 256k (2mbit)
This design has been refined to include an LPC header plug
and a socket attached to the mod chip PCB, this has two key
benefits it allows easy installation and removal of the mod
chip. Also should you wish to change mod chip totally you
will already have an LPC header plug attached to your main
board, the majority of new mod chips on the market will support
connections to the main board via this method until Microsoft
remove the LPC header totally from the Xbox main boards layout.
As can be seen in the photo above a pin is missing from the
plug and already inserted into the socket on the mod chip,
this prevents you from accidentally plugging the mod chip
in the wrong way round, a simple effective solution allowing
no mistakes to be made upon fitting.
The overall construction of the mod chip was of a high standard.
The quality of the PCB, sockets, and pins were also excellent.
After removing the outer case, DVD, hard drive and the main
board. I then removed the solder in the LPC holes as this
was a version 1.0 Xbox, using a desolder pump made the job
a breeze. Once I had 15 clean LPC header holes the plug was
I had already decided to solder all 15 pins into the LPC
header, you actually only need to solder 9 pins to make the
correct connection to the LPC header, but while you have the
main board removed it only takes a few extra seconds to solder
all 15 pins.
The next task was to strip each end of the Kynar wire supplied
and solder them onto the two points located on the reverse
of the main board, this can be seen in the photo on the right
above. You can if required fit a spst switch to this wire
giving you the ability to enable and disable the Cheapmod
Finishing the installation was easy all that was required
was for me to connect the mod chip onto the newly fitted LPC
I tested a range of different 256k BIOS images including the
new Cromwell 1.6a 256k Linux BIOS. All of which were flashed
using the Evolution X dashboard and performed exactly as expected.
All homebrew software, Linux and original Xbox game discs
worked without problem.
BIOS is flash updateable using the latest Evolution X dashboard
Requires complete main board removal for installation.
Good value modchip at an excellent price.
Only a 256k flash chip.
Ability to flash blank SST49LF020 chips for use in other Cheapmods.
LPC header plug makes fitting and removal a dream.
Fast and simple installation.
Suitable for v1.0 and v1.1 Xboxes specific BIOS image is required.
A single Cheapmod kit retails at $22.00 (usd) or £14.00
(ukp) discounts are available for larger orders, more details
are on the official Cheapmod website.
The addition of a 16 pin gold plated LPC header plug and
socket make this probably the best value cheapmod on the market,
even with these additional components the price is still very
reasonable. The install time fitting the mod after opening
the Xbox case is about 10 to 15 mins on a version 1.0 Xbox
as you have to remove the solder from the LPC header holes.
On a version 1.1 Xbox it takes about 4 mins to install as
the LPC header holes are not solder filled. Depending on how
the Xbox scene moves forward a 256k flash chip may just not
cut it, but being realistic most normal users will never have
need for larger BIOS images no matter what hype other mod
chip producers on the scene make about extra BIOS features
needing larger flash chips. The average Xbox user just wants
the ability to run homebrew software and backups. From a price
to performance ratio these are 'Cheap as Chips' and I whole
heatedly recommend these without any doubts.
Official website and installation guides are here: http://www.cheapmod.com/