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X200t LCD to X200s - what to do with digitiser?

X200/X201/X220 (including equivalent tablet models) and X300/X301 series specific matters only.
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Lomax
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X200t LCD to X200s - what to do with digitiser?

#1 Post by Lomax » Fri Jun 12, 2015 12:18 am

I recently replaced my somewhat battered X200t with a minty X200s, and to me the slightly smaller size and cooler running is well worth the trade-off of losing the tablet function - which I never used anyway. But gah! That screen! Compared to the X200t the colours are off, the viewing angles are atrocious and the black level is like a grey smog - very disappointing for what was a premium machine in its day. Luckily though, they both have WXGA CCFL panels, so I'm just going to transplant the screen :)

I have already, very carefully, removed the screen from the X200t's bezel and I was surprised to find that the touch digitiser isn't part of the front cover but an integral part of the panel itself. I'm now a little hesitant about how to proceed - whether I should try to remove the digitiser or just use the panel as is. The surface is not as shiny as the plastic front of the bezel (now removed), but it's not as nicely matte as the otherwise crappy screen on the X200s either... What do those of you how have attempted this hack recommend here? It seems cruel (and risky!) to just cut/rip it out :o And is there any chance whatsoever I could interface with the Wacom board? An X200s with touch would be pretty neat!

The panel in question is a Samsung LTN121AP02 and it has a Wacom SU5E-12W13AS-01X digitiser.
600E - 600X - 770X - X31 - X32 - T43p (SATA) - T60p - X200t - X61s - X200s - X201s (PVA) - X220 - X230 (X220 kbd)

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Re: X200t LCD to X200s - what to do with digitiser?

#2 Post by RealBlackStuff » Fri Jun 12, 2015 4:32 am

That X200t LCD won't fit in an X200s lid, it's too thick.
It may perhaps fit in a standard X200 lid, but I'm not sure about the LCD-cable compatibility.

My X200s has a LED 1440x900 LCD, and I'm quite happy with it.
My machine is used only for one person at a time, who sits in front of it, so who cares about viewing angles?
And the LED screen is more than bright enough.
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Re: X200t LCD to X200s - what to do with digitiser?

#3 Post by Lomax » Fri Jun 12, 2015 7:06 am

RealBlackStuff wrote:That X200t LCD won't fit in an X200s lid, it's too thick. It may perhaps fit in a standard X200 lid, but I'm not sure about the LCD-cable compatibility.
Ah. That's... unfortunate. So I have just butchered my X200t in vain? Happy days. Btw - cable should be the same and in the same spot, based on the HMM. Also, many people have fitted the LTN121AP02 panel in X200 machines.
RealBlackStuff wrote:My X200s has a LED 1440x900 LCD, and I'm quite happy with it. My machine is used only for one person at a time, who sits in front of it, so who cares about viewing angles? And the LED screen is more than bright enough.
Good for you! The panel I have is terrible though!

So, plan "C": does anyone know of a suitable panel upgrade that will fit an X200s with CCFL?
600E - 600X - 770X - X31 - X32 - T43p (SATA) - T60p - X200t - X61s - X200s - X201s (PVA) - X220 - X230 (X220 kbd)

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Re: X200t LCD to X200s - what to do with digitiser?

#4 Post by Lomax » Sat Jun 13, 2015 7:19 am

Lomax wrote:Does anyone know of a suitable panel upgrade that will fit an X200s with CCFL?
Hmmm. Maybe there is no such thing?
600E - 600X - 770X - X31 - X32 - T43p (SATA) - T60p - X200t - X61s - X200s - X201s (PVA) - X220 - X230 (X220 kbd)

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Re: X200t LCD to X200s - what to do with digitiser?

#5 Post by harryK » Sat Jun 13, 2015 7:48 am

Lomax wrote: So, plan "C": does anyone know of a suitable panel upgrade that will fit an X200s with CCFL?
Yes. The mighty BoeHydis AFFS panel

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Re: X200t LCD to X200s - what to do with digitiser?

#6 Post by Lomax » Sat Jun 13, 2015 8:22 am

harryK wrote:Yes. The mighty BoeHydis AFFS panel
Thank you - some digging turned up this thread which contains many confirmed installs of Boe/Hydis HV121WX4 in the X200s. However, looking at the datasheet for the panel, the dimensional drawing shows a maximum thickness of 6.7mm - this is actually a smidgen thicker than the maximum I measure on my LTN121AP02 (6.5mm), and this is where the (presumably removable) Wacom encoder card sits. It seems contradictory that a panel which is thinner than the HV121WX4 would be too thick to install, when the HV121WX4 clearly isn't?

Update: I very carefully measured my LTN121AP02 panel again, calipers against the Wacom SOC and the front metal frame - I get 6.6mm, but then I'm being very gentle to avoid scratching the screen, so 6.5mm could still be accurate. In any case, it's less than the HV121WX4, according to the datasheet.

Update: A third measurement confirms my suspicion: pre-setting my calipers to 6.5mm I am able to slide them over the frame and the Wacom SOC without difficulty - and after removing them they remained set at precisely 6.5mm. The LTN121AP02 is 6.5mm thick, which is 0.2mm less than the specified thickness of the HV121WX4. Unless anyone knows for a fact that my panel definitely won't fit, I'll be getting my screwdrivers out.
600E - 600X - 770X - X31 - X32 - T43p (SATA) - T60p - X200t - X61s - X200s - X201s (PVA) - X220 - X230 (X220 kbd)

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Re: X200t LCD to X200s - what to do with digitiser?

#7 Post by harryK » Sat Jun 13, 2015 11:54 am

Lomax wrote:
harryK wrote:Yes. The mighty BoeHydis AFFS panel
Thank you - some digging turned up this thread which contains many confirmed installs of Boe/Hydis HV121WX4 in the X200s. However, looking at the datasheet for the panel, the dimensional drawing shows a maximum thickness of 6.7mm - this is actually a smidgen thicker than the maximum I measure on my LTN121AP02 (6.5mm), and this is where the (presumably removable) Wacom encoder card sits. It seems contradictory that a panel which is thinner than the HV121WX4 would be too thick to install, when the HV121WX4 clearly isn't?

Update: I very carefully measured my LTN121AP02 panel again, calipers against the Wacom SOC and the front metal frame - I get 6.6mm, but then I'm being very gentle to avoid scratching the screen, so 6.5mm could still be accurate. In any case, it's less than the HV121WX4, according to the datasheet.

Update: A third measurement confirms my suspicion: pre-setting my calipers to 6.5mm I am able to slide them over the frame and the Wacom SOC without difficulty - and after removing them they remained set at precisely 6.5mm. The LTN121AP02 is 6.5mm thick, which is 0.2mm less than the specified thickness of the HV121WX4. Unless anyone knows for a fact that my panel definitely won't fit, I'll be getting my screwdrivers out.
The CCFL x200s lid is thicker than the LED x200s lid. I believe that the ccfl x200s screen is exactly the same as the non-s ccfl x200. I didn't follow the whole discussion, but if you are sure that the tablet screen sans digitizer would fit an x200 then go for it with your x200s!

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Re: X200t LCD to X200s - what to do with digitiser?

#8 Post by Lomax » Sat Jun 13, 2015 1:47 pm

harryK wrote:The CCFL x200s lid is thicker than the LED x200s lid. I believe that the ccfl x200s screen is exactly the same as the non-s ccfl x200. I didn't follow the whole discussion, but if you are sure that the tablet screen sans digitizer would fit an x200 then go for it with your x200s!
I went for it and guess what: although performing the swap was a lot fiddlier than I expected (the cables for the antennas in particular are a pain in the ***) it turned out the screen fits perfectly! The bezel sits flush and flat, with no gaps or bulges, and I have no trouble opening and closing the lid. In fact until you see the stunning screen in action you can't tell the machine has been modified. I didn't do anything about the touch digitiser panel, or the Wacom encoder card - these were both left intact, and I'm happy with the "mattness" of the screen as it is. Success!

If you are considering the same swap - do it! The difference is like night and day; the LTN121AP02 panel beats the stock screen on every single metric - colours are better, black level is better, sharpness is better, contrast is better and viewing angles are better.

TLDR; the Samsung LTN121AP02 panel from an X200t fits and is compatible with an X200s, provided that the latter was originally equipped with a CCFL WXGA screen. No modification of either laptop or screen is required.
600E - 600X - 770X - X31 - X32 - T43p (SATA) - T60p - X200t - X61s - X200s - X201s (PVA) - X220 - X230 (X220 kbd)

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Re: X200t LCD to X200s - what to do with digitiser?

#9 Post by Lomax » Tue Jun 16, 2015 5:35 am

Having been exclusively using this laptop for a few days I have to say this is the best Thinkpad I have ever owned.

1) The keyboard is great! Maybe not as good as the 600 series, but then I've never encountered a match for these. It's easily as good as my (second best) T43p.

2) The size is perfect. It's just large enough to incorporate a full size keyboard, and the screen is just roomy enough to comfortably use for development work. The best laptop you have is the one you have with you...

3) It's cool and quiet. Sure, the 1.6GHz Core2Duo is no racer, and certain things like 3D rendering in Blender is pretty slow, but it's plenty fast enough for web browsing and programming, and even limited 3D rendering is acceptable (final projects are rendered on a much more powerful machine anyway). I for one definitely prefer the trade-off in performance in return for a laptop I can actually have in my lap without needing a trip to the burns unit afterwards.

4) It's very solidly built. I was disappointed with the flimsy and plasticky shell of my T60p (15" version) and not all that impressed with the X200t either. This feels different. It's schtumm and solid, no creaking or flexing anywhere. It surprises me somewhat as I thought Lenovo were incapable of matching the build quality of classic IBM Thinkpads like the X32 and 600-series, but I have to hand it to them; this is an extremely well made machine.

5) Shocking battery life. I've never before owned a laptop that will go a whole day without charging - and then continue on part through a second day without demanding juice. I'm easily getting 10-12 hours plus actual usage on a 6-cell battery, and even the 4-cell is enough for a whole day on the road.

6) It has the right features, and none of the junk. Having endured the X200t for a year, where almost every day I reached for the Thinklight button only to remember it doesn't have one, it's wonderful to have this essential feature back. And as someone who's exclusively used the Trackpoint for 20-odd years it always annoyed me that they insisted on including a useless "touchpad" on the later models. Sure, it can be disabled, but since I spend 10+ hours a day with my palms on the palmrest, its presence was definitely annoying on my T43p and T60p. Having a laptop without it is a big plus. I'm also happy it doesn't have a webcam fitted (I would have removed this if it did) and pleased to note it is as easy to disassemble and re-assemble as any other Thinkpad, including the helpful screw indicators (choke on that Apple). Apart from the screen-swap, I have since installed a 3G WAN modem, and 2x4Gb RAM, and had no trouble with either.

There you have it, just had to share my <3, well done Lenovo! And yes, I do realise this is a 6+ years old model - but it is the most modern machine I've been able to find that doesn't have "chicklet" keyboards, humongous (and still useless) touchpads and glossy screens. In short: currently the best Thinkpad - perhaps forever.
600E - 600X - 770X - X31 - X32 - T43p (SATA) - T60p - X200t - X61s - X200s - X201s (PVA) - X220 - X230 (X220 kbd)

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Re: X200t LCD to X200s - what to do with digitiser?

#10 Post by RealBlackStuff » Tue Jun 16, 2015 7:04 am

I concur with your enthusiasm.
There is still one option to improve even more:
find a more powerful X201 or X201s and transplant your whole X200s lid onto it.
All other bits (HD/wifi/WWAN/RAM/battery etc.) can also be transferred.
(X201 models can also a have touchpad-less palmrest).
Or replace just the X200s mobo with an X201/s one.
Still NOT a great day for a Guinness! (the Real Black Stuff).
Ireland is on FULL lockdown until Easter 2021!
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Re: X200t LCD to X200s - what to do with digitiser?

#11 Post by Lomax » Tue Jun 16, 2015 8:06 am

RealBlackStuff wrote:I concur with your enthusiasm.
Hehe, thanks for the support - I don't often deliver such outpourings of love publicly, but as anyone who's used one will know, this is an exceptional device :)
RealBlackStuff wrote:find a more powerful X201 or X201s and transplant your whole X200s lid onto it.
Ah. Ah! You know I've been looking for an X201s for an absolute age, but they're rarer than hen's teeth. I've seen pictures of ones without the touchpad but these seem to be even rarer. It's good to know a palm-rest transplant is possible - in case I finally manage to find one. The X201 (plain) is less interesting since I'm very much an LV guy (or ULV if only I could find one).
RealBlackStuff wrote:Or replace just the X200s mobo with an X201/s one.
This is another interesting option, and good to know, but again the problem is sourcing a motherboard with an LV/ULV CPU...
600E - 600X - 770X - X31 - X32 - T43p (SATA) - T60p - X200t - X61s - X200s - X201s (PVA) - X220 - X230 (X220 kbd)

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Re: X200t LCD to X200s - what to do with digitiser?

#12 Post by harryK » Tue Jun 16, 2015 8:41 am

Lomax wrote:This is another interesting option, and good to know, but again the problem is sourcing a motherboard with an LV/ULV CPU...
http://www.aliexpress.com/item/Free-shi ... 16880.html

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Re: X200t LCD to X200s - what to do with digitiser?

#13 Post by harryK » Tue Jun 16, 2015 10:47 am

Lomax wrote:TLDR; the Samsung LTN121AP02 panel from an X200t fits and is compatible with an X200s, provided that the latter was originally equipped with a CCFL WXGA screen. No modification of either laptop or screen is required.
So I was checking the x200t HMM. All the screens there - single touch, multitouch, or "direct-bonding glass" (whatever that means) - are marked as being "LED backlight" (pag.164-166). Can you confirm that you used your touchpanel as a drop-in replacement for a ccfl x200s panel? Did you have to transplant anything else, other than the screen itself (like the lcd cable or the inverter)?
My point is that yours could be a brilliant solution to make a LED-backlight IPS screen for the X201! At the moment the only way to do that is via a BoeHydis AFFS screen + CCFL cable from the X200, the backdrop being that CCFL is much less power efficient than LED....

Anyway, congratulations :-)

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Re: X200t LCD to X200s - what to do with digitiser?

#14 Post by Lomax » Tue Jun 16, 2015 2:27 pm

harryK wrote:http://www.aliexpress.com/item/Free-shi ... 16880.html
Hehe, well, that's an excellent find, thanks for the link. However: that price!
harryK wrote:Can you confirm that you used your touchpanel as a drop-in replacement for a ccfl x200s panel?
Yep, 100% drop-in. The Samsung LTN121AP02 panel has CCFL backlight and uses the same connector and voltage as that provided by the inverter in my X200s. Screw holes along the sides also matched up perfectly.
harryK wrote:Did you have to transplant anything else, other than the screen itself (like the lcd cable or the inverter)?
Nope. Literally only the screen and the (still attached but not connected) touch panel and associated controller card. I'm sure both these can be removed without too much difficulty, but since there was room for them, and I didn't mind the ever so slightly "non-matte" surface of the digitiser I left them in place. I still haven't given up on the idea to somehow connect up the Wacom card to the USB cable for the webcam, which is currently dangling unused mere inches away from it. This should be trivial provided it's connected via USB (likely?) since I already have a donor flat-cable that fits the encoder card - a bit of soldering and some Kynar wire should do the job - if only a pinout was available!
harryK wrote:My point is that yours could be a brilliant solution to make a LED-backlight IPS screen for the X201!
I would love an X201s without touch-pad with a good quality LED backlit screen, but this one will do for now!
600E - 600X - 770X - X31 - X32 - T43p (SATA) - T60p - X200t - X61s - X200s - X201s (PVA) - X220 - X230 (X220 kbd)

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Re: X200t LCD to X200s - what to do with digitiser?

#15 Post by PandorasThinkpad » Tue Jun 16, 2015 6:07 pm

Hi Lomax,

the display you have taken from your X200t and put in your X200s is the pva display listed here...http://thinkwiki.de/%28X200%29_AFFS/PVA ... %C3%BCsten

There is nothing very special on this display, it is quite good.....indeed better than the normal TN panel....it's very good for working with pictures....it isn't good for playing games or looking films, but this are informations of the wiki....you just have to find out by yourself for what this display is mostley usable for.

Nice greets,

PanDoRA
My most actual Thinkpad:
T23 with 1,2 GHz PIII-M, CCFL XGA, big Docking and even an very seldom Ultrabay2000 Zip250 Drive
T450s with I7, FHD (AUO B140HAN01.3), 20GB Ram (one with no lenovo guarantee anymore because of real bad experiences with lenovo support)

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Re: X200t LCD to X200s - what to do with digitiser?

#16 Post by Lomax » Tue Jun 16, 2015 6:29 pm

PandorasThinkpad wrote:There is nothing very special on this display, it is quite good.....indeed better than the normal TN panel....it's very good for working with pictures....it isn't good for playing games or looking films, but this are informations of the wiki....you just have to find out by yourself for what this display is mostley usable for.
Thanks, but I don't need a wiki to tell me what's right in front of my eyes :) Maybe if I was shopping around for a replacement panel I would be looking for some reviews and opinions - but this was a panel I already had. Whatever the numbers say, it certainly looks like a huge improvement to me - and HD movies are stunning. I don't think I ever claimed that this was the best panel in the world - I already have a Samsung SyncMaster XL20 for example, which blows the pants off the PVA panel in terms of colour and black-level - but I think rejecting a free upgrade just because it isn't the best would be pretty stupid!

Edit: I had to double check - it turns out the XL20 also has a PVA panel, or "S-PVA" whatever that means. Doesn't matter; side by side the comparison is laughable, I assure you.

Edit: The only game I play is Dwarf Fortress! :D
600E - 600X - 770X - X31 - X32 - T43p (SATA) - T60p - X200t - X61s - X200s - X201s (PVA) - X220 - X230 (X220 kbd)

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Re: X200t LCD to X200s - what to do with digitiser?

#17 Post by PandorasThinkpad » Tue Jun 16, 2015 6:48 pm

Hey!

Ok, have fun with it, it was quite a well done change....

and i just wanted to give this information about, not more or less..the great advantage in comparison to the other fitting display.....not glossy, so is yours and so is mine...we both are not able to test out which one is better,....

i have the HV121WX4-120 and i changed from the 1440x900 x200s display....maybe....when the ccfl will get old and dark....i will think about doing the led mod....

So once again, have fun with this display...which is so much better then the one once came with the X200s.

Like described in the german thinkpad forum....you can leave the digitizer where it is.

Greets,

PanDoRa
My most actual Thinkpad:
T23 with 1,2 GHz PIII-M, CCFL XGA, big Docking and even an very seldom Ultrabay2000 Zip250 Drive
T450s with I7, FHD (AUO B140HAN01.3), 20GB Ram (one with no lenovo guarantee anymore because of real bad experiences with lenovo support)

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