This guide requires being comfortable with soldering, and the disassembly of your Xbox 360. The LEDs used are very small (about the size of a few grains of salt) and though this instructable does not require absolutely steady hands, it does demand patience. You will be operating on a $300 piece of hardware, and though it is highly unlikely you will break your Xbox 360, is it possible to irreparably damage the LED solder points on your wireless board making that light inoperable.
*** I claim no liability for any damages or injuries that occur while following these instructions. Attempting this mod will void your Xbox 360s warranty, and you can sustain injury through the use of lead-based solder inhalation and an extremely hot soldering iron. ***
Step 1: Parts Needed
Soldering Iron ($10) - These can be purchased at many hobby stores, I used a 15 watt model from Radioshack.
Solder ($4) - I recommend Silver Rosin Core Solder, the silver helps create a strong joint and the rosin eases the flow of solder between components. A smaller diameter works better for this project (.020 - .026).
Copper Soldering Braid ($3) - Used to remove excess solder. This is necessary for cleaning the terminals where the old LEDs were on the wireless board. You put it over the excess solder, apply your soldering iron to the braid, and the excess is absorbed into the braid.
Tweezers ($3) - These are absolutely necessary to do this project. They will hold the SMD LEDs, align them in the proper direction, and make it possible to solder the LED without it blowing away or tipping over. Purchase the flattest tweezer tips you can, if they are round the LED will just shoot off.
Xbox 360 Wireless Board (Cost of an Xbox 360) - Comes with any Xbox 360, contains the Player 1-4 LEDs, power LED, and wireless antenna.
Support/Holder - I used a thumbtack box, you can use whatever object suits your needs. A suitable holder should be about 1-2 inches off of the ground, and be able to keep your wireless board flat and immobile. Other objects can be small bowels, cups - whatever your can find.
0603 SMD LEDs (~$ 0.30 per LED) - Choose whatever colors you wish, I selected a different color for each LED to match my controllers. No matter how careful or skilled you are, you will waste/lose many LEDs so be sure to purchase extras. The brighter the LEDs the better, the difference between a 150mcd brightness $0.22 and a 500mcd $0.37 LED is worth the extra cost.
***Purchasing 0603 SMD LEDs***
It can be hard to purchase individual quantities of these LEDs at low prices. My favorite retailer is Unique LEDs. They have a very wide selection of difficult to find LEDs at excellent prices.
Having your Xbox 360 vertically or horizontally oriented makes a difference. When turned vertical the four player LEDs are rotated one to the left, keep this in mind if you want to modify your controller LEDs as well, as they use the same SMD 0603 LEDs and the orientation can become mismatched.
For the specific LEDs I purchased, each color is:
800mcd White - Power Button
500mcd Red - Player 1
380mcd Blue - Player 2
130mcd Amber (Yellow) - Player 3
200mcd Pure Green - Player 4