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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Anyone not overly thrilled with the orange dash illumination color? Looks like it might be possible to change out the LEDs that provide the illumination for ones of a different color. Red, green, blue, anyone? There look to be 13 surface mount LEDs providing the backlighting. There are a few more for warning indicators. I actually thought there might be an electroluminescent panel, but cost won out, it seems. I bought this panel to experiment with. I’m going to see if I can identify the vendor of the LEDs, and see what other options are available, if any. I think a green or blue would look nice, myself.
62842
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
There’s a reason the illumination is so poor for the instrument cluster. They skimped on the number of LEDs used. There are positions for 6 LEDs for the LCD panel, but they only used 4. The speedometer has positions for 8 LEDs, but they only used 5. One can only imagine how much brighter things could be.
 

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There’s a reason the illumination is so poor for the instrument cluster. They skimped on the number of LEDs used. There are positions for 6 LEDs for the LCD panel, but they only used 4. The speedometer has positions for 8 LEDs, but they only used 5. One can only imagine how much brighter things could be.
I’ve been going nuts not being able to read the panel durning the day! Now this explains WHY! I’m so happy I stumbled upon this.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I’ve been going nuts not being able to read the panel durning the day! Now this explains WHY! I’m so happy I stumbled upon this.
I haven't had a chance to source the LEDs yet. Will try over the holidays. May just buy another used cluster and steal the LEDs out of it, combine with the first. I agree, the illumination sucks.
 

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Hm I was wondering why the dash lights in mine seemed so dim.
Now I know why.
I would love white in mine if you start up a conversion service(did that in my dad’s hummer’s cluster by a guy on eBay and wow what a difference)
It definitely needs more lighting at night though I think the color has a lot to do with it(my rx8 has white backlight on the tech and speed display vs red on the rest of the dash lights and it does great at night and is easy on the eyes)
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
My thinking was that a variety of colors could be offered, depending on preference. I'll update here when I know more about potential replacements. The other question is whether or not the cluster stores the odometer reading. If so, one would need their own unit modified. I can find that out easy enough by swapping out clusters.
 

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That would be great.
If Mercedes-smart is anything like gm then yes it’s stored in the cluster.
I say that as when I sent the cluster from my dad’s hummer off to have it done the guy sent a pic of it powered up showing the same mileage that was on the truck when I pulled the cluster.
 

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2015 smart Fortwo Passion Coupe
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Evilution has a page on the speedo LEDs. Just by switching the leds for different color ones you can change the color of essentially everything in the speedo "unit". They seem to be PLCC-2 leds.

Evilution Link
 

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Smart fortwo 451. 2012 petrol
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Evilution has a page on the speedo LEDs. Just by switching the leds for different color ones you can change the color of essentially everything in the speedo "unit". They seem to be PLCC-2 leds.

Evilution Link
Take a look at this video, hopefully the link will work. The video is from a member on this site. Handy Dan. Really good clear information on how to do it from start to finish.
 

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LEDs don’t all have the same current draw or voltage requirements. It’s possible that new LEDs might need new value resistors. If the new ones used are similar enough characteristics to the ones being replaced, it should be be an issue. Too much current draw could overheat the resistors. Blue and white LEDs typically draw more current than orange, red, green, and yellow. YMMV, Worth checking.
 

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My rx8 has red dash lights and white in it’s cluster.(the older ones had dual color set up clusters with white and switch to red when the headlights was on(too bad we can’t mimic that))
Anyway I’ll do some research on the led chips and try it on one of my 08’s before I do it on my 09 smart.
Red is really best for night vision.
 
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