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Modding a Halo Special Edition console on an Xbox motherboard revision v1.4 (translated)

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Original blog post can be found here (Korean only): https://m.blog.naver.com/overrich/10137470188

This thread is entirely machine translated with DeepL. During the translation, there are many grammar errors throughout, so I took it upon myself to fix those issues and provide additional information to make it more interesting. Enjoy. 😄



There are so many ways you can modify your Xbox, one such chip however, uses an SST 49LF020. They are used in a number of different clone modchips such as the AppleX and first-generation Aladdins.


(Picture showing the number of different chips in total.)

If you look at the picture closely, they all use the same 49LF020 (256k) LPC flash.

I've also previously posted about modchips for the Xbox such as the AppleX chip. (korean only)


However, these chips have limitations, and that they *cannot be used only in the v1.4 motherboard revision.

(*) not in this blog post, but during my research, it is possible to install a cheapmod into a v1.3 and even up to a v1.6, just by doing an LFRAME and LPC rebuild.


The chip above is the Eagle Chip. By default, the eject and power buttons are used to power the modchip - switching between stock and modified modes.

  • Press and hold the Eject button to launch the original dashboard.
  • Power button launches the modded dashboard.

However, due to Microsoft banning numerous consoles for using Xbox Live under the assumption of a modded system, and the fact that Xbox Live isn't supported for earlier revisions with an older kernel, this renders the feature virtually useless.


(frontal shot of the Eagle Chip)

The Eagle Chip is 256Kbit in size, whereas other modchips can also have 1MBit 49LF080.

There are a couple of things you need to do before you start modding, and that is by first understanding on how to disassemble the console, soldering the LPC header and locating 'D0' on the underside of the board.

Socketing the LPC header


(v1.0 - v1.5)

On the 1.5 revision, the LPC port is missing 3.3V and GND from the board. So you will need to connect 3.3V and GND lines to the LPC port from elsewhere on the motherboard to power the chip.



The board must be wired as shown in the photo in order for the chip to work, as they have cut off the necessary lines for utilising the modchip.


(Picture of the LPC port)

The LPC port as shown here is from a v1.0 motherboard, the holes are filled with solder, this is an exception for v1.1 revisions however so this isn't necessary. You will need to somehow clean up the holes with some desoldering braid or a pump to remove the excess solder prior to installing the header.


One pin as highlighted here, that being pin 4, needs to be removed with a set of tweezers or needle nose pliers.


Seat the LPC header at the bottom of the port as shown by the arrow, it should look like this. Now, lets get this to work with my Halo console.

Preparing the console


These are the two Halo Xboxes that I got this weekend. These two by default has a v1.4 motherboard installed.


You will need a screwdriver set with individual torx screw bits or a separate torx screwdriver for disassembly.

  • T-20 to disassemble the body.
  • T-15 to remove the hard drive.
  • T-10 for everything else such as the motherboard.


Heat the seal with a hairdryer and then pry it off, this will allow you to lift it without breaking the seal. And if you slightly lift the rubber feet in the corners, you will find that there are four screws to remove, and another hiding under the manufacturing date sticker.


After removing the top casing, remove both the hard drive and DVD-ROM drive to reveal the rest of the inside.


(Picture of the video encoder chip on a v1.4)

One way to easily tell that this is a v1.4 revision Xbox, is by paying attention to the video encoder chip markings. As seen here, the v1.4 commonly uses one manufactured by Focus Enhancements.


(Shot of the top side of the board)

We can continue to remove the rest of the screws on the motherboard and carefully lift it out of its chassis.


(Shot of the underside of the board)

After we have installed the LPC header, we will need to look at the underside of the motherboard and locate the 'D0' point.



Located here is the 'D0' point highlighted in red where you need to solder a wire to.


Locate the 'POWER' and 'EJECT' points on the underside of the board, and solder the correct colour coated wires to them. The 'EJECT' wire isn't necessary since Xbox Live has been out of support, so powering off the modchip is not worth the effort.


This is what it looks like with 'D0', 'POWER', and 'EJECT' all connected from the bottom of the board. Route each wire through one of the remaining empty LPC header holes, and solder them directly to the appropriate points on the modchip.


(Locations of the 'D0', 'POWER' and 'EJECT' points on the modchip as shown)


Line up the modchip with the LPC header, making sure it lines up with the arrow.


This is the end result once its fully installed, now let's power on the Xbox and check if it works.




CoinOps 4 works great.

As a matter of fact, I couldn't use the Apple chip on a v1.4, so I had to resort to an Eagle chip. A better alternative if you're not willing to install a chip, is to modify the TSOP flash, which requires bridging two points.

If you are using Eagle Chip to modify the 1.4 board, please refer to the following:

(Report from HESUNG, the original creator of Eagle Chip)
The one with 49LF020 is called Eagle Mini.
The one with 49LF080 is called EagleMode.
Eagle mode with 49LF080 is 1M.
1MBit flash is divided into 4 banks by default (bank0, bank1, bank2, bank3)

Bank 0 = 256k = short power button press - EagleBios mode (controls the mod chip and manages flashing to banks 1, 2, 3)
Bank 1 = 256k = Power button long - ModBios
Bank 2 = 256k = Power + Eject button - ModBios
Bank 3 = 256k = No boot from buttons, selective boot from eagle bios.

In addition to having a dedicated OS BIOS and the ability to add an optional remote control receiver, Eagle Mode automatically changes the size of the bank based on the size of the BIOS being flashed.

For example, if you flash a 512k bios to Bank2, Bank 2 and Bank 3 will be combined into a 512k bank, and bank3 will disappear.
The Eagle chip I got this time has 49LF020, so it's an Eagle Mini, so only 256k is available. Since there is no bank selection, the modification works with only one D0 connection.


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