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03.10.2003

Implant on Newton

By Kenny Song <kensong@pc.jaring.my>, Message-ID: <b50b8493.bb3%kensong@pc.jaring.my>

If you can, do the RAM upgrade and the Implant upgrade at one go. It is cheaper and your Newt will be opened only once. I would never recommend anyone to do the Implant without first upgrading the RAM. That's the best money spent on any hardware upgrade to the MP2000. (...)

Here are the specs for the upgrade:

  1. CPU speed control based on Implant-2000 technology
  2. sleep mode to save battery power
  3. switch control to deactivate Implant-2000 module on the fly
  4. Implant-2000 performance factor about 40%-60%
  5. realtimeclock NOT accelerated (full compatible)
  6. maximum quiescont supply current 3.3 Volt 200uA
  7. maximum quiescont supply current in sleep mode 100uA
  8. Implant-2000 based on 3.3V CMOS technology
  9. fixed CPU speed factor over 220MHz
  10. Size: length 29 mm; width 25 mm; height 4 mm
What are the benefits to expect

1. What about performance with the upgrade? - How much faster will my MessagePad be?
The speed increase with different applications and functions varies. By my experience the recognizing of handwriting will be faster from 15 up to 40 %. Searching especially global is much faster. Other speed increase includes:

  • Startup after a soft reset
  • Opening of Extra Drawers and switching of icon/overview modes
  • Backing up (Card to Card)
  • Launching of packages
  • Sorting eg Notion
  • Higher frequency to sounds eg Alarms, System sounds

2. How do I use the upgrade?
The electronic logic of the Implant ensures that the MessagePad will be started in accelerated-mode by normal switch-on (short hold of the Power-on-button). If you keep the button in on-position for about 0.6 sec the MessagePad will start with the normal unaccelerated mode. Hold this button in position for about 1.2 sec in order to turn on the additional backlight. (The timing can be tricky so I usually flick on for accelerated mode and on Backlight/Normal mode by holding switch, then off the backlight if I have to.) However, it in only on rare occasions that you'll turn off the accelerator.

3. When would I need to off the accelerator?
You will need to switch back to normal mode for the following.

  • Beaming
  • Use of the Serial Port
  • The use of Ethernet Cards (?)
  • Listening to Speaktext/MODplayer etc

4. What is not affected by the Implant?

  • Real time clock remains unaffected. Your Newton will continue to keep time
  • Your data will remain perfectly safe. However, the upgrade will require a brainwipe of the internal store. There is also a chance that you will lose any System Update which Pixsolution won't reinstall for you. So make sure you have a copy of the latest System Update.
  • Modem use will remain unaffected
5. What negative effects can I expect from the upgrade?
Apart from the sound being rendered at a higher speed, here are some things I know about.
  • Battery consumption would be about 10-15% more. This is however really quite insignificant if you are a Modem user which really is the main draw of power in my Newt.
  • On VERY rare occasions, the screen becomes unresponsive ie nothing happens when you tap, write on screen. It can affect the whole screen or just the top half. In the one and half years of use, it happened to me only once.
    The cure is simple, remove ALL power and let the Newt sit for 2 hours. Remember, it is VERY rare and only a few users have reported this. It however in no way affect the hardware.
6. What comes with the Upgrade?
Apart for the SPEEEEEEED increase, some software, basically to diagnose your Newt to confirm the Implant is in place (checks CPU Speed) and also a pkg that lets you confirm what mode you are in (accelerated or normal). I trashed this because by listening to the tap sound, I can tell whether I'm in accelerated mode or not.

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