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Microsoft Kinect (Xbox 360) Teardown

Bill Detwiler cracks open the revolutionary Microsoft Kinect Xbox 360 peripheral.
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The Microsoft Kinect is an Xbox 360 peripheral that allows a "controller-free gaming and entertainment experience." Packed with cameras, microphones, an IR projector, and more, the Kinect is Microsoft's answer to the Nintendo Wii remote and the Sony Playstation Move controller.
Follow along as I crack open the Kinect for a look at the hardware inside.
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This Microsoft Kinect cost $150 (US) and included the game Kinect Adventures.
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Under the Kinect are the WiFi extension cable, product documentation, and the Kinect Adventures game.

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Inside the box, you'll find the Kinect, the Power/USB cable, the WiFi extension cable, product documentation, and the Kinect Adventures! game.

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Thin plastic grills are mounted on both side of the Kinect. They are held in place with adhesive and plastic tabs. Using a thin metal blade or spudger, you can pry each grill loose from the Kinect's case.
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Two Torx T10 security screws are located under each of the gills.
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Two more Torx T10 screws are hidden beneath the two Xbox 360 stickers--one on each side.
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With the Torx T10 security screws removed, you can lift off the top cover.
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Because of the Kinect's size, Microsoft stacked the device's three PCBs.
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With the top cover removed, you can gently slide the right-side grill away from the case.
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Behind the left-side grill is the Kinect's cooling fan.
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Like the right-side grill, you can remove the left-side grill and fan by gently sliding them away from the case. You'll also need to disconnect the fan's cable from the PCB.
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With the side grills and cooling fan removed, you can remove the back cover.
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With the back cover removed, we get a better look at the Kinect's internal metal frame and the three, stacked PCBs. The PCBs are connected to each other with black, plastic connectors.
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The first PCB is held in place by seven Torx T10 screws.
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The second, smaller PCB will remain attached to the first PCB, when the larger board is removed from the frame. Several cables connect various components to the first and second PCBs.
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To separate the first and second PCB, you'll need to pry loose this black, rectangular connector.
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A thin metal heat sink is stuck to chips on the first PCB. As I want to put this unit back together in working order, I'm going to leave the heat sink in place.
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Wolfson Microelectronics WM8737G
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Fairchild Semiconductor FDS8984 (right) and NEC D720114 (left)
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H1033366 XBOX1001 X851716-006 GEPP (left)
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ST Microelectronics 25P16V6G 9YHJM VS MYS 0384
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G39 01A1P 025AV
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TI TAS1020B
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With the first two PCBs removed, we can now tackle the third PCB.
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The Kinect's two cameras and IR projector are connected to the third PCB with three ribbon cables.
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The third PCB is held in place by the posts that were used for the first PCB's screws. I used a 3/16 inch nut driver to remove them.
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A single cable is attached to the underside of the third PCB.
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TI ADS 7830I 07NZ
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ST Microelectronics M29W800DB and Prime Sense PS1080
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4LBF 1027 K7B and LVX 125 015
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With the Kinect's three PCBs removed, we can turn our attention to the remaining components.
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The Kinect's internal metal frame is held to the front cover with four Torx T10 screws--two on each side.
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Several cables pass through the metal frame and need to be removed before you can completely separate the frame from the front cover.
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The status LED is held to the front frame with plastic clips. You should be able to remove it without breaking the clips.
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Once the LED is disconnected, you'll also need to pull the microphone cable through the frame.
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The Kinect has four downward-facing microphones--three on one side and one on the other. All four microphones are attached to a plastic assembly that can be removed from the front cover.
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With all the plastic covers and PCBs removed for the Kinect's main body, all that remains are the cameras, IR projector, status LED, base, and related cables.
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A single Torx T10 screw holds the base's post to the metal frame.
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With the post screw removed, you can pull the base away from the metal frame. Take care when pulling the cable through the frame.
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The Kinect's base contains the motor and gears used to position the device for optimal performance.
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Before removing the cameras and IR projector, we'll remove the white, plastic support that's mounted to the metal frame.
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The plastic support is help to the frame by three Torx T10 screws.
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The cable for the IR projector is attached to the plastic support, you'll need to remove this before pulling the support completely away from the Kinect.
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The Kinect's IR projector is attached to the metal frame with three Torx T6 screws.
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To remove the IR projector from the metal frame, you'll need to pull the cable through the frame.
When I was removing the cable, I pulled the cable through from the connector end. It wasn't until after I pulled the cable through, that I find out I could have pulled it through from the other side.
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The Kinect's IR projector, rubber gasket, and senor cable. Had I removed the rubber gasket, I could have pulled the able through the frame from this end.
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The Kinect's two cameras are held to the metal frame with six Torx T6 screws.
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The Kinect's two cameras are held together with a one-piece rubber gasket.
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A rubber pad is attached to the bottom of the base and hides several Phillips #0 screws.
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With the Phillips #0 screws removed, you can lift the top cover away from the Kinect's base.
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The motor and gear assembly should come right out of the base's bottom cover.
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A metal brace holds the post to the motor and gear assembly. The brace is held in place with four Phillips #0 screws.
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Removing the three large Phillips screws on the bottom of the motor and gear assembly will let open the assembly.
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The Microsoft Kinect was remarkably easy to disassemble. It has a lot of specialized components, but non are soldered in place. If you can get replacement parts, it's definitely a device the average tech can repair.
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Caption by: Bill Detwiler

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