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X201 upgraded with Xiphmont led backlight

Posted: Sat Jul 18, 2020 10:59 am
by chowbear
I've finally managed to re-create Xiphmonts LED driver board and backlight strip and install it in my X201! http://imgur.com/gallery/BrBRjfa

Originally I wanted to use it in my X200s but I unfortunately blew it up when testing one of the LED driver boards so it ended up in an X201 that I had impulse bought previously for another possible project.

I'm using it with an AFFS screen and it looks quite good however I don't have a device to measure the colour gamut with the new backlight strip. Another issue is that the bottom two corners have bright spots which I wonder might be fixed by either rotating the strip slightly or slightly shortening it.

At any rate I'm happy enough with it for now!

Re: X201 upgraded with Xiphmont led backlight

Posted: Sun Jul 19, 2020 8:05 am
by axur-delmeria
Great work!

Now, the questions:

1. How difficult was it to build?

2. Will you offer premade kits?

:D

Re: X201 upgraded with Xiphmont led backlight

Posted: Wed Jul 22, 2020 6:28 am
by chowbear
1. I wouldn't call it easy as I am a beginner in electronics. Having said that, if I could do it I'm sure anyone else can figure it out as well! It might just require an investment of money and time :P

2. I would love to be able to offer pre-made kits however at the moment the problem is that the LEDs are only available for order in reels of 5000 which is pretty expensive! I'm checking now to see what my options are for this. Also as I mentioned in my post, I'd need to purchase some equipment for quality control e.g. monitor calibrator, x61 etc. and there are still a couple of kinks which need to be worked out.

I'll definitely look into making some kits, but otherwise you can contact me and I can send you all my notes if you would like to try this for yourself!

Re: X201 upgraded with Xiphmont led backlight

Posted: Wed Jul 22, 2020 8:48 pm
by axur-delmeria
I do have a soldering station, but it's a beginner-level one and I have zero experience with soldering SMT components. I also don't have a microscope. :cry:

Re: X201 upgraded with Xiphmont led backlight

Posted: Thu Jul 23, 2020 6:45 am
by chowbear
I also have a $100 AUD soldering + hot air station and prior to this project had zero experience with soldering SMT components :lol: The components are luckily not small enough that you'd need a microscope, I made do with a $20 AUD crappy magnifying glass helping hands thing. Really I don't think technical skills etc. are much of a problem :P worst case scenario is that you solder the components crappily and you have to rework them!

One thing I would recommend is a hot air station for the LED strip.

Re: X201 upgraded with Xiphmont led backlight

Posted: Thu Jul 23, 2020 7:19 am
by atagunov
We also need to learn where to get PCB-s.. I would have been happy with a kit that contains the PCB + a bag of unsoldered parts :)

In my particular case I'm not that keen on LED-s either

BTW do you think soldering with a fine tip thermally controlled soldering iron is feasible for the PCB? E.g. without hot plate and without hot air? I appreciate the LED-s need to be soldered with extra equipment, but what about the PCB? Also do you have to use soldering paste or would a 0.3mm thread of rosin core solder also work?

Re: X201 upgraded with Xiphmont led backlight

Posted: Fri Jul 24, 2020 9:26 am
by axur-delmeria
chowbear wrote:
Thu Jul 23, 2020 6:45 am
I also have a $100 AUD soldering + hot air station and prior to this project had zero experience with soldering SMT components :lol: The components are luckily not small enough that you'd need a microscope, I made do with a $20 AUD crappy magnifying glass helping hands thing. Really I don't think technical skills etc. are much of a problem :P worst case scenario is that you solder the components crappily and you have to rework them!

One thing I would recommend is a hot air station for the LED strip.
My soldering+hot air station costs around that much. My magnifying glass only has a CCFL ring light (no helping hands); it's free as I inherited it from a deceased uncle who repaired audio equipment.

I agree with atagunov, I'd take even a kit with just the bare PCBs and unsoldered components, especially since the alternative is sourcing each component and having to fabricate PCBs--I mean, how do you even do that these days? I haven't even graduated from permanent markers for making PCB traces. :lol: At least I've used hydrogen peroxide + hydrochloric acid for etching. :D