Palm squeal/whine/noise repair

[EDIT: As cool as I think it is that all you people are coming to my site for solutions to your Palm problems, it would be really great if you could leave a comment as to whether any of these worked for you, or to let me know about something I did not mention previously. Also, there is the rest of the site to browse, which would be nice.]

Per request, I’m going to add a little more detail on how I fixed my Palm E2 yesterday.

The problem I was dealing with was this: When I turned the Palm on, it would emit a high-pitched squealing noise, sort of like the one you get when you have an old television that needs to warm up a little bit before you can see what is on the screen. It was highly directional, and seemed to be coming directly out of the screen. If you tilted the screen away from you slightly, the noise lessened. Tapping the screen to enter data modified the intensity of the noise, but not necessarily the tone, and ‘flexing’ the entire device did approximately the same thing.

Similar problems do exist, as outlined at Just-blog
, which may or may not be caused by the same thing, such as a similar noise coming from only one part of the device. I’m not prepared to offer advice in terms of other problems at this time.


Just-blog presents as a solution overclocking the Palm processor in order to change the frequency of the internal clock and therefore of the screen, which could be the source of the squeal. While this did not work for me, a software fix for this problem is usually preferable for people who do not want to take their device apart. Multiple overclocking programs exist for various Palm devices, but for the E2 all I was able to find were Warpspeed and PXA Clocker.

If you are looking to overclock another advice, I suggest using the ‘search’ feature on your browser to check out Just-blog
and searching for your model number.


Do not despair if overclocking your Palm does not work! There is another solution, posted by junglemike at Brighthand that fixed my Palm E2 in about 15 minutes. Apparently, the problem is due to some odd proximity effect of the digitizer on the screen itself. The steps are the same as illustrated, but I have some additional suggestions:

* Be not afraid of the star-fangled screws holding it together. A small flathead screwdriver will work on them, or a very small allen wrench.

* When pulling the case apart, you are going to need to pop it really hard, so don’t be afraid of it. The two things I did do were disconnect the battery initially (the plug pops off and on easily) and lose the power button for a couple minutes because it flew off when I finally got the case apart.

* The digitizer is on top if the screen, and note that there is a connection between the two that you should NOT mess with inadvertently while you are prying them apart.

* For the material between the screen and the digitizer, I used a full sheet of thick clear plastic (from a box some window blinds came in), but it is possible to use overhead transparencies or even a couple layers of foil or regular paper around the edges. You don’t need to block the whole screen, you just need to get the digitizer away from it by a little bit. I suggest plugging everything in and testing it while you have the Palm apart in order to see how much of an effect you are having on the noise.

I hope this was of help to someone, but it’s really those sites mentioned above that fixed my problem for me. If there are any more questions, I am glad to be of service.

6 thoughts on “Palm squeal/whine/noise repair”

  1. Thanks matthew for the solutions.. i’ve tried pxa clocker and it seems to work fine at the moment, while warpspeed has crashed my E2 before.. as long as pxa clocker is working, i’ll not have to open it up and fix it manually. although if it does come to that, i’ll know to refer to your post for the hardware fix. thanks a bunch! – zuhri

  2. Anonymous says:

    Hi Matthew, I would like to try adding material betweeen the screen & digitizer. My E2 is mking a lot of noise. But I really don't know how to do this, other than your added recmmendations. The link you provided to bright hand is now inoperable. I went to the bright hand site, search found nothing so I spent a couple hours digging thru posts – found some of the re-clocking info but nothing on putting material between the screen & digitizer. Do you know where the detailed procedures are for doing this?? I have no idea where the digitizer is, so I'm reluctant to take the E2 apart to try this, since I really don't know how big a piece of material to use,where to put it, etc. Thanks if you can provide more info on this. Deb

  3. Matthew says:

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  4. Matthew says:

    This appears to be the thread (on but the images appear not to have been archived 🙁

  5. Anonymous says:

    Hi Matthew! Wow! Thanks! Now that I have seen the photos & process, I'm having cold feet. I have never opened the back of a Palm so I'm a bit afraid after reading the posts where folks hosed their digitizers doing this.

    I do have to change out the battery anyway, so I'll crack it open & see if I have the guts to go any further. Eeeek! Thanks again for looking so hard & finding that post! I looked for a couple of hours & did not find it – so thanks very much. I'll let you know how it goes. Deb

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