(Topic ID: 147487)

Anyone else prefer DMD to LCD?

By Jake

8 years ago


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  • 118 posts
  • 53 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 8 years ago by TheLaw
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    There are 118 posts in this topic. You are on page 1 of 3.
    #1 8 years ago

    I've been on a two year hiatus from this forum, but some of the discussion remains the same. Every new Stern speculation thread had people swearing the next game would have an LCD display. I always hoped it wouldn't. Maybe I'm just nostalgic towards the great machines of the 90s, but I love DMDs, especially now that Color DMD is rapidly adding new titles.

    Anyone else feel the same?

    #2 8 years ago

    I used to be more like you, but I'm slowly moving away. My issue has always been more on the artistic side than the technical. I feel like screwing up DMD animations is way less intrusive than making a horrible LCD.
    BUT being well made I think it would be cool. So basically, I don't frikkin know

    27
    #3 8 years ago

    Nope.

    Stern DMDs look like a bunch of small cheap squares jammed together which are masquerading as an acceptable display in 2015.

    #4 8 years ago

    I almost never find myself looking at the display when I'm playing, but when I do look, the reason is usually to get information about how I'm doing in the game, how I'm progressing towards specific goals, etc. For this reason, the LCD seems like a huge upgrade in terms of how much information can be easily displayed. I think just having the LCD display can pave the way for more complex code that would impossible to really represent well with just a DMD. I also really like the Heighway model of a small LCD embedded in the playfield for this same reason - it's so much easier to see while you're playing.

    15
    #5 8 years ago

    I like reels

    #6 8 years ago
    Quoted from Jake:

    I've been on a two year hiatus from this forum, but some of the discussion remains the same. Every new Stern speculation thread had people swearing the next game would have an LCD display. I always hoped it wouldn't. Maybe I'm just nostalgic towards the great machines of the 90s, but I love DMDs, especially now that Color DMD is rapidly adding new titles.
    Anyone else feel the same?

    Color DMD is great, but I'd rather it come that way from the factory instead of spending another $400. Monochrome is over. Color will be standard from all factories soon, and I'm happy about that.

    #7 8 years ago

    emphatic no

    #8 8 years ago
    Quoted from Rarehero:

    Color DMD is great, but I'd rather it come that way from the factory instead of spending another $400. Monochrome is over. Color will be standard from all factories soon, and I'm happy about that.

    that's what I think, whatever the price is for the Stern, I have to add another $400 + shipping. not to mention the waste of having a perfectly good DMD that I no longer need or want.

    #9 8 years ago

    Nope. It's not just the graphical quality. ColorDMD is great, but I love seeing that information dump on the WOZ/TH screens. A lot of older games don't really need it, most of the information is on the inserts themselves, but there are so many applications. It would be great to see how many shots left towards each multiball on AC/DC without going into Instant Info or how many things left until Crank it Up.

    Considering the art development costs, I don't think you have to worry about DMDs going away for a while. Stern is hanging on to them, Riot Pinball uses them, Spooky and Dutch Pinball are using LCDs in a DMD style.

    #10 8 years ago
    Quoted from Jake:

    Every new Stern speculation thread had people swearing the next game would have an LCD display. I always hoped it wouldn't. Maybe I'm just nostalgic towards the great machines of the 90s, but I love DMDs, especially now that Color DMD is rapidly adding new titles.

    I guess I'm confused by what you mean. Are you saying you just love dots? Because ColorDMDs are LCD displays.

    I like great dots, but I'm ready to move on from them. It's about to be 2016, I think high rez graphics you can read and see are okay now.

    #11 8 years ago

    yes, the displays on Stern are them just being cheap and lazy. I haven't bought a pin since STLE, and I don't think Stern is earning my business when they won't at least put a color DMD which is clearly a step up from the DMD. Makes us pay the extra $400. But like Aurch says it's almost 2016 lets step up to hi-res color displays.

    21
    #12 8 years ago
    Quoted from rai:

    yes, the displays on Stern are them just being cheap and lazy.

    Stern has responded to this criticism:
    http://replygif.net/i/718.gif

    #13 8 years ago
    Quoted from rai:

    yes, the displays on Stern are them just being cheap and lazy.

    BUT switching over to a new system might screw them out of the great release cycle they have now.
    I don't want them to slow down that's for sure. WOZ didn't really excite me which is why I wasn;pt gung ho on it...but Hobbit looks pretty sweet.

    #14 8 years ago

    New games with monochrome DMDs look dated.

    If they were updated to display color, they would look perfectly acceptable to me, as I'm sure they would to most people. I think it's the lack of color that stands out.

    #16 8 years ago
    Quoted from Aurich:

    I guess I'm confused by what you mean. Are you saying you just love dots? Because ColorDMDs are LCD displays.

    Yes, I misspoke. I like dots as opposed to film clips, etc. I also prefer the size of the DMD. I enjoy translight art and a lot of the real estate is lost to larger screen displays.

    #17 8 years ago

    I've had a Smart DMD setup.
    Put some times on ColorDMD games.
    Own an XPIN Blue LED DMD.
    Own Standard DMDs.

    The colordmds are neat, but the black levels bite. My smart dmd suffered the same problem.
    The XPIN Blue in my PM is neat, but the blocks are not perfectly aligned. Mine might be an older one as I have heard they are better now.

    Right now I keep watching the progress on the RGB DMDs. Using two panels instead of 16 means no alignment issues. It won't have the black level problems of the color dmd. Granted you cannot do the 16x aa, but I am completely fine with that. Also should be able to fit it in Bally style backboxes and CV too.

    #18 8 years ago

    I like the look of the DMDs. Perhaps it is the anachronistic mechanical feel if Pinball in general. I think I am the only Metallica owner not in a rush to get a color DMD. I've seen it, and while cool, didn't move me as much as it clearly has so many.

    #19 8 years ago
    Quoted from XpadreX:

    I like the look of the DMDs. Perhaps it is the anachronistic mechanical feel if Pinball in general. I think I am the only Metallica owner not in a rush to get a color DMD. I've seen it, and while cool, didn't move me as much as it clearly has so many.

    Nope im with you on met lol

    #20 8 years ago
    Quoted from bigd1979:

    Nope im with you on met lol

    I don't get it - the designs and animation are top notch (for a retro style) and color is absolutely perfect on it!

    Quoted from dung:

    Right now I keep watching the progress on the RGB DMDs. Using two panels instead of 16 means no alignment issues. It won't have the black level problems of the color dmd. Granted you cannot do the 16x aa, but I am completely fine with that. Also should be able to fit it in Bally style backboxes and CV too.

    Any solution that gets a color display in CV has my $$$$!

    #21 8 years ago

    Give me an LCD any day over a DMD, TH looks amazing!

    #22 8 years ago

    full LCD < DMD < numeric display < incandescently lit mechanical score reels

    #23 8 years ago

    You forgot < Incandescent bulb behind a backglass with the score painted on in.

    #24 8 years ago
    Quoted from Zampinator:

    Give me an LCD any day over a DMD, TH looks amazing!

    Yup.

    #25 8 years ago

    I'd take color over the new Stern crap, but prefer the older plasma dmds

    -2
    #26 8 years ago

    LCD, LIKE WOZ, SHOULD BE STANDARD. I also wouldn't mind if Stern did a color DMD and playfield LCD, like Heighway, for Ghostbusters as a temporary measure to gauge reception. Stern needs to step it up, or they could get stepped on...

    #27 8 years ago
    Quoted from ForceFlow:

    New games with monochrome DMDs look dated.

    These are pins, not dresses or neckties. Anyway, my vote would be to make any display upgrades optional, so that pinball remains affordable for ops and the average collector. I do hate the LED displays though...they're bright, but obviously composed of smaller LED modules.

    #28 8 years ago

    I like the HD DMD, it would be great if GB had one of those. I could live with that.

    #29 8 years ago

    There isn't much time to look up while you're playing without cradling a ball, and once I've done that, it doesn't much matter to me how the info is being displayed (unless we're talking one of those Sterns with nothing helpful in the status screens).

    I'm more interested in audio callouts that tell me what to do. Something like "slay the dragon" would be a more subtle, and better themed, way to say "shoot the right ramp".

    #30 8 years ago

    After getting a color DMD for my IMVE I think every machine should at least be made with color DMDs from now on.

    Keeps that original feel but adds a lot.
    Games don't need LCD's.

    But colored dots are the future.

    #31 8 years ago

    Can't give a bigger no.

    Lcd all the way.

    And for miniplayfields soon we wont have a glass/plexiglass piece of playfield. But a see through lcd screen.

    So it is a real screen like on FT. But when it is off, or does not show any footage, you can see the miniplayfield underneath it. (And play it)

    The screen could show explosions on the side, so you still can see the ball, or other stuff while playing the lower playfield. Or when you are playing some horrortheme. Playing the lower playfield, looking at it with your nose on it, and suddenly the screen shows a monster/zombi, that scares the shit out of you.

    Maybe some fog, or just scores from the minigame etc etc etc.

    That will be an awesome innovation. So many good and fun ideas for pinball with see through lcds incoming...

    #32 8 years ago
    Quoted from Taxman:

    You forgot < Incandescent bulb behind a backglass with the score painted on in.

    I woke up in the middle of the night and knew I had forgotten something. And you are correct. Thanks!

    #33 8 years ago
    Quoted from ryanwanger:

    There isn't much time to look up while you're playing without cradling a ball, and once I've done that, it doesn't much matter to me how the info is being displayed (unless we're talking one of those Sterns with nothing helpful in the status screens).
    I'm more interested in audio callouts that tell me what to do. Something like "slay the dragon" would be a more subtle, and better themed, way to say "shoot the right ramp".

    Audio call outs are bad to some people. I don't mind them but many people say this is an annoying part of ToM and TOTAN. It is why the flashing insert is one of the best ways, or a flasher under a ramp. But everyone is different.

    When I look at the LCD for The Hobbit I am in awe of how good it looks but almost scared of the amount of information. But as with any game getting use to it is half of getting better. Where to look and what to look for.

    A good game should be a combination of everything. Audio, Inserts and display.

    #34 8 years ago
    Quoted from swampfire:

    These are pins, not dresses or neckties. Anyway, my vote would be to make any display upgrades optional, so that pinball remains affordable for ops and the average collector.

    I'd bet any money a DMD is a more expensive part than a comparable LCD display.

    #35 8 years ago

    I'm with you all the way, I like my DMD dots and my backglass art the way it is on my pins. But have to admit LCD is the way to go on newer pins. However think Stern needs to do something to blow your socks off when they change to LCD.

    #36 8 years ago
    Quoted from pezpunk:

    I'd bet any money a DMD is a more expensive part than a comparable LCD display.

    Heck yeah! DMD is high voltage...way more components to support that voltage. LCD is lower voltage in my understanding.

    -2
    #37 8 years ago
    Quoted from pezpunk:

    I'd bet any money a DMD is a more expensive part than a comparable LCD display.

    If that's true, why is a ColorDMD a $400 upgrade? It doesn't matter what the manufacturer's cost is - if a game has a color LCD the same size as a DMD (or larger), you're going to pay $$$ for it.

    #38 8 years ago
    Quoted from FrostyMug:

    Heck yeah! DMD is high voltage...way more components to support that voltage. LCD is lower voltage in my understanding.

    All Stern DMDs have been LED (low voltage) since at least Metallica.

    #39 8 years ago

    The money for switching to color LCD on a pin will be more development than hardware. So they are not going to develop twice and make LED / LCD an "option". And the money had to come off either the money they make or the final price of the game.

    Stern use to sell to the operator and keep the bottom line down to keep sales numbers up. The recent price hike in the industry might give them some breathing room, but it Gary is still feeling out the new paradigm of home collectors buying a larger percent than he use to admit they were willing to absorb of his sales. He can see what the competition is doing. He knows he has to make the jump.

    (Just thinking out loud) Maybe he is still watching his own back yard to see what happens with the PPS / MMr color upgrade. How much did they pay the artists, how much can they get for the upgrade, can hardware suppliers cover the amount and consistency?

    But the red led blocks have to go. As soon as I put ColorDMD into AC/DC I see a game without it and I want to puke.

    #40 8 years ago

    I'm not a huge fan of colorDMD and the LCD in WOZ to me is overkill, but if stern was able to put a color DMD similar to what MMR colorized has, that would be enough for me.

    #41 8 years ago
    Quoted from TVP:

    I'm not a huge fan of colorDMD and the LCD in WOZ to me is overkill, but if stern was able to put a color DMD similar to what MMR colorized has, that would be enough for me.

    I would like to argue with what you say, but looking at your collection I think you give an informed decision. Most don't.

    #42 8 years ago

    Nothing less than a 3D 4K curved screen will ever satisfy a serious pinhead.

    720P is bullshit.

    #43 8 years ago

    I just took the ColorDMD out of my ACDC to swap it into another game, and had to put the Stern red LED DMD back in it.

    I missed the color and clarity immediately, I need another ColorDMD now to fix it. I'll take care of that soon.

    Red LEDs are a terrible way to display things, there's just no getting around that.

    Here's my theory: it's not that some people don't want an LCD, or high rez, they don't want information overload. They don't want to see a 40 things at once.

    DMDs are necessarily simple, they just show you a small amount at once, and it's immediately relevant. You're keeping a ball in play, you just want to look up, get the info, and maybe a cool little quick animation that says "hey good job" for the shots you just made.

    There's no reason an LCD screen can't duplicate that feel. That's honestly what I'm trying to do with Alien. You should see your score at almost all times, except for a few full screen animations for special events, and everything should be fast. You're not sitting here to watch the movie, you're playing pinball. Let's keep things moving.

    That's what a DMD does, except this will be better, because you can more easily keep the score on the screen at all times, for all 4 players, along with the ball number, extra ball count, credits. Useful stuff to see at all times, out of the way, and legible. A DMD can't do that.

    I think we just need to allow time for more companies to ship games with LCDs. Compare an early DMD game like T2 to Metallica. Things evolved.

    #44 8 years ago

    Neither. I prefer score reels instead.

    #45 8 years ago

    Art, layout or new technology - pick any two (for new games under $5000).

    Art and layout will win for me every single time.

    #46 8 years ago
    Quoted from vid1900:

    Nothing less than a 3D 4K curved screen will ever satisfy a serious pinhead.
    720P is bullshit.

    Why such LOW expectations? You TOTALLY forgot a paper thin OLED screen.

    #47 8 years ago
    Quoted from zacaj:

    I'd take color over the new Stern crap, but prefer the older plasma dmds

    I've only had one game with a red LED display. Had issues with it soon after I got it and changed it to a plasma.

    http://webpages.charter.net/schudel5/DMD/sterndmd.html

    I have two color DMDs on MM and AFM and honestly don't plan on getting any more. They're cool for what they are, but at the price point they're kind of pricey eye candy.

    #49 8 years ago
    Quoted from swampfire:

    If that's true, why is a ColorDMD a $400 upgrade? It doesn't matter what the manufacturer's cost is - if a game has a color LCD the same size as a DMD (or larger), you're going to pay $$$ for it.

    ColorDMD is a niche product for hobbyists. The display you're getting is probably $100 give or take in raw parts. The price we pay is for the R&D to develop the product, the time it takes to color the games, and support. They've made a nice small business out of ColorDMD and its expected they'd like to make some profit.

    If Stern had color displays it theoretically shouldn't impact the price at all. The raw materials are about the same price - LCD is probably cheaper as its a common mass produced part. They're already paying artists/animators to do display animation - their salary doesn't change based on the final color output.

    #50 8 years ago

    I don't dispute that ColorDMD is worth the money. I just think it's naive to think Stern won't increase prices to add new features (whatever they are). And if they can keep their R&D costs the same, great - more power to them.

    The premium price for SMVE should be a reminder that Stern is a business.

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