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How upgrade Acer TravelMate 352TEV for bluetooth support?

Hi all,

The question shows on the title. I know, as Acer says, TM350 series notebooks have built-in support for bluetooth, equip a dedicated button to switch wireless communication. Hmm..., it even has built-in antenna at thr right side of its screen, right?

I know the machine should be upgraded with somethings to support bluetooh, but dont know what is it and how to do it in detail. BTW, I prefer to use Acer's accessories.

Of course, I need at least one other device to communicate with the bluetooth-ready notebook, ok, I have Nokia 6310 wich has built-in and workable BT feature support. What is the next step? Buy a Nokia Connectivity Card DTL-4? I have to buy a DTL-4 for the "bluetooth-ready" notebook?!

Thanks for your help and any comments are welcome!

Regards,
bbao
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bbao
Asked:
bbao
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1 Solution
 
joetablaCommented:

I have an Acer travelmate 350te-n...

Althought the embedded mini-pci card can be easily replaced -- Acer *will not* release the bluetooth upgrade as promised, and should not have received press coverage for any bluetooth related features.  Acer originally shipped saying that bluetooth upgrade would be released sometime in 2001.  A year later they simply dropped any discussion, and removed bluetooth related specs from its web site.

I recommend getting a bluetooth pc card.  I did this, deciding not to wait any longer for Acer.  3com makes one with a retractable antenna, keeping the slim form factor for the sleek TM350 series.

I don't recommend Acer to others specifically for this bluetooth let down.  I've also had to replace the fan.  Otherwise it's a decent laptop.

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bbaoIT ConsultantAuthor Commented:
joetabla, yes, the bloody acer did lie at all. more over, my fan has been replaced for 3 times!

hi all, back to the topic, since the acer tm350 has only one pcmcia slot so i only can take one pc card with it, certainly i take a lot with me, but dont. ;) the only one slot has been used for 3com wifi card, so i have no space to add any bluetooth pc card. what i want:

1. i prefer, any wany i can find a mini-card plug into my tm350, even it is not made by acer
2. any usb-based solution, but .... :( i have to take more with me)
3. ....waiting for your answer...

thanks,
bbao
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bbaoIT ConsultantAuthor Commented:
joetabla, 350te-n?? the wireless version of tm350? where are you from? where is the wifi card? the mini-pci card under keyboard or the pc card solution? thanks a lot.
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bbaoIT ConsultantAuthor Commented:
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joetablaCommented:
The mini PCI card sits (flat) underneath the keyboard, with two wires that go to the two antennas in the hinges.  I have some photos I took when I disassembled my travelmate -- I can send or post (was planning on posting a how-to-take-apart-your-acer-travelmate page)

there weren't any consumer mini pci wireless cards on the market when last i looked -- but now at first glance, seems that there are actually some available.  i wouldn't mind upgrading mine, especially if i could get a bluetooth version.  i have no idea what's out there, or how the well the cards will integrate, especially with the hot-enable button.  there are some linux folks that have tinkered with getting the hot-keys et cetera to work.  i don't imagine acer will be helpful at all, given my past dealings with them.  

i don't know of any bluetooth / 802.11x combo pc cards on the market (which would work for you), but there are trim usb versions of both that you could use depending on your preferences or needs.  I tend to only use one or the other, so having to swap isn't all that bad -- but it's nice to have both "built-in" and in an unobtrusive form factor.  the usb versions (both bluetooth & 802.11b) have gotten smaller over the years, essentially the size of a key chain now.

you might try one of the 802.11b mini pci cards, and then a bluetooth pc card w/ retracting antenna.  Keep in mind in some travelmates, the mini pci card is actually the standard ethernet card, and hence they originally sold either-or options on that.  i do not have a functional built-in ethernet port (it's not wired to anything).  i'm fine with that for the most part.  i plug in a ethernet pc card if needed, but  it would have been *nicer* to have the built in port work.

BTW, i'm from portland.
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bbaoIT ConsultantAuthor Commented:
joetabla, thanks for your message.

i called the headquarters of acer in taiwan last year, august in my mind, and even found a member of 350's development team. what i learned from him was be told the location where that non-released mini-card would be placed (i dont want to disassemble my 350), hehe, he even did not know the position for antennas. what he knew were to tell me: no, not available, not yet, no news, no help!
:-(((

finally, i actually saw the empty location reserved for bluetooth, at the acer's services center in my city, anyway, i would like to view your photos if it is possible. hehe.

i already got a 802.11b pc card for my acer, so i have no space for another external bluetooth card. i still prefer the built-in solution, just like yours idea. and i had gotten bluebooth mobile for the acer before i got that sad news from taiwan!

btw, i am from china, mainland china, the mother of taiwan. :))
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nemiCommented:
joetabla - info on taking the laptop apart would be great. I need to get at the fan in my 351TEV , but have only ever got so far and ran out of ideas. Please post instructions to pcreeveshall@no-spam.com  where no-spam is "hotmail".

Many thanks,
P
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joetablaCommented:

ok, here's the article on taking the acer apart (with photos), along with few other entries ... take a look.

http://www.7hertz.com/archives/2004/03/take_apart_an_acer_travelmate_350.html
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nemiCommented:
Great, that you VERy much.

BTW what is the issue with the fan (wrong watage) does it not cool enough or does the laptop run hoter before the fan kicks in? or dos the fan not kick in at all?

 :-/
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bbaoIT ConsultantAuthor Commented:
nemi, i have similar issue in summer. before you replace the fan, you may try press fn+f2 to start notebook manager, input password, click the POST tab, check the option "fans always on enabled".
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joetablaCommented:

the new fan (even the identicle part number) does not have the same wattage rating (0.5W instead of 1.0W).

the variable speed mode does not seem to function properly, so you have to use the notebook manager to turn the fan on.
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bbaoIT ConsultantAuthor Commented:
hi joetabla, do you know any good news on the mini-pci card compatible with our TM350s? cheers,
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joetablaCommented:

well, there is an answer.  just not one (myself included) people want to hear.

there is no offical bluetooth upgrade, using an internal card, from acer.

i recommend the 3com pc card, with retractable antenna,
or you could use a usb bluetooth device, -or- get a new laptop.
you *can* find some mini pci cards on the market, but no one i know
had tried them out.  so caveat emptor.

i don't care about points -- but i don't think the thread should be deleted.
there you go.
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bbaoIT ConsultantAuthor Commented:
joetabla, thanks for your continued help, here are poinsts for you! :) anyway, i am still looking for an internal mini pci card for this to-be-said bluetooth laptop, and i welcome any further feedback on this from any one. course, any one who posts new useful comments at here, will get points too. cheers, bbao
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joetablaCommented:
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bbaoIT ConsultantAuthor Commented:
good news! thanks joetabla, i am going to watch them closely.
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