(Topic ID: 86718)

ColorDMD Color Changing / TRON Pinbits (Eli) Ramps Integration


By herg

5 years ago



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  • 79 posts
  • 35 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 4 years ago by rubberducks
  • Topic is favorited by 20 Pinsiders

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    There are 79 posts in this topic. You are on page 1 of 2.
    #1 5 years ago

    This is an attempt to document what I did to get this working. It is not a good final solution, but maybe someone will run with it and create a nice kit. I don't really have the time myself.

    1. Install a ColorDMD and update to the newer SIGMA firmware with the color changing feature. See this thread:
    http://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/new-from-colordmd-why-pick-just-one

    2. You need to tap into the signals that drive the ramp LEDs. This is a frankenstein method using stuff I had laying around. Note that my kit is one of the prototypes and the pinout is different for the ones that Pinbits is now selling.
    IMG_0237.JPG
    IMG_0238.JPG

    3. I had to modify the signals slightly. Basically, I'm using a microcontroller to switch from one set of inputs (left ramp) to the other (right ramp) once per second. I then invert them (low logic input = high logic output). The microcontroller is inside the heat shrink.
    IMG_0239.JPG

    4. Finally, connect to the ColorDMD as Randy described, except I'm using 5V logic rather than 12V. The ColorDMD is easily capable of handling the 5V logic as is.
    IMG_0240.JPG

    You could take this in two different directions.
    1. Randy could take the microcontroller stuff and move it into the ColorDMD firmware, and then we would only need a dumb cable.

    2. You could keep the microcontroller external, add transistors to the MCUs outputs, and add a 12V power source with enough current capability to drive your devices. What devices, you ask? Any of the stuff that the LED strip controller boxes now handle. So, you could have the ColorDMD, speaker lights, under-cabinet lighting, toppers, etc. all synchronized to the Pinbits / Eli ramps.

    Anyway, here's a slightly better video (once it finishes uploading) than the one in the original thread to allow you to see what my machine is doing now.

    And the original video:

    #2 5 years ago

    Nice mod.

    #3 5 years ago

    Very sweet, would be a great addition to Tron.

    #4 5 years ago

    This video is private

    Second video works

    #5 5 years ago

    Fyi, you get the following message when trying to view the first video... "This video is private."

    Edit: ^^^ Beat me to it

    #6 5 years ago

    If Randy put this together in a ColorDMD package it would be an instant buy for me.

    The way the color on the DMD matches the color of the ramps is perfect.

    #7 5 years ago

    Looks like your first video may of uploaded but is set to private herg.

    Edit: Tooooo slooooowwwww

    #8 5 years ago
    Quoted from RobT:

    This video is private
    Second video works

    Sorry. Better now?

    #9 5 years ago
    Quoted from RobT:

    If Randy put this together in a ColorDMD package it would be an instant buy for me.
    The way the color on the DMD matches the color of the ramps is perfect.

    I would be in as well. Love it!

    #10 5 years ago
    Quoted from herg:

    Sorry. Better now?

    Yup works fine, looks good. Is the color more saturated in person? Hard to tell with a video of a backlit source.

    #11 5 years ago
    Quoted from Aurich:

    Is the color more saturated in person?

    Not substantially. What you see in the video is pretty close to how it looks in person.

    #12 5 years ago

    Yeah this would be a cool kit, cause this seems a bit technical for the bell curve crowd (like myself).

    #14 5 years ago
    Quoted from herg:

    Not substantially. What you see in the video is pretty close to how it looks in person.

    Yeah, that's kind of what I thought. Be nice if some glossy IPS panels were to fall into ColorDMD's price range. No reason why the colors can't pop more. Still a sweet look though.

    #15 5 years ago

    I really do want this. Looks great.

    #16 5 years ago

    Thanks Herg!!
    Happy to see there are more cool things that can be done extra with the Eli kit.

    #17 5 years ago

    That looks awesome! Now I want that in my game too!

    #18 5 years ago
    Quoted from Aurich:

    Yeah, that's kind of what I thought. Be nice if some glossy IPS panels were to fall into ColorDMD's price range. No reason why the colors can't pop more. Still a sweet look though.

    ?

    The colors look great to me.

    #19 5 years ago

    Amazing, it's perfect.

    #20 5 years ago
    Quoted from herg:

    You could take this in two different directions.
    1. Randy could take the microcontroller stuff and move it into the ColorDMD firmware, and then we would only need a dumb cable.
    2. You could keep the microcontroller external, add transistors to the MCUs outputs, and add a 12V power source with enough current capability to drive your devices. What devices, you ask? Any of the stuff that the LED strip controller boxes now handle. So, you could have the ColorDMD, speaker lights, under-cabinet lighting, toppers, etc. all synchronized to the Pinbits / Eli ramps.
    Anyway, here's a slightly better video (once it finishes uploading) than the one in the original thread to allow you to see what my machine is doing now.

    This looks great, Herg!

    Moving the logic from the microcontroller into the ColorDMD is pretty straightforward but it would be specific to this application (Tron LE interface is different) and may require a dedicated ROM for this purpose. Making the interface cable could be left as a DIY project, or (if there's enough interest) they could be produced.

    Martin@Pinbits and I have exchanged a few emails to explore the second option (which I like better) if it can be supported.

    Hoping to hear from others to gauge the level of interest in this project!

    #21 5 years ago
    Quoted from Dmod:

    Moving the logic from the microcontroller into the ColorDMD is pretty straightforward but it would be specific to this application (TRON LE interface is different) and may require a dedicated ROM for this purpose.

    Plus, someone would still have to build a cable with the nasty connector arrangement to tap into the ramp signals.

    If there is enough interest, getting Martin involved would be great. He already knows how the ramp mod works, and he's well equipped to produce them. If there's not enough interest to support a PCB design, I'm willing give away the microcontroller code/info for DIY guys, or even program and ship some ICs for no profit.

    #22 5 years ago

    +1

    i'd like a Tron LE solution

    amazing work !!!

    #24 5 years ago

    +1 for Tron LE solution

    #25 5 years ago

    Herg- I could build that connector I don't think it will be nasty at all. I would just need to know your board connections.

    #26 5 years ago

    The connector is a 0.100" pitch 14-pin.

    The pinout on the prototype I have:
    1 - GND
    2 - 5V DC
    7 - Ramp #1 B
    8 - Ramp #1 G
    9 - Ramp #1 R
    12 - Ramp #2 B
    13 - Ramp #2 G
    14 - Ramp #2 R

    The production ones that are now being sold by Pinbits look like they're the following (though I have no way to confirm):
    1 - GND
    2 - 5V DC
    5 - Ramp #1 B
    6 - Ramp #1 G
    7 - Ramp #1 R
    12 - Ramp #2 B
    13 - Ramp #2 G
    14 - Ramp #2 R

    From there, it's going to depend on how the rest of it is implemented. On mine, I just soldered wires directly to the pins of the MCU, then put heat shrink tubing over it.

    #27 5 years ago

    Let me know if you want me to build you a clean connector. I can send it off to you this week for your trial.

    #28 5 years ago

    Thanks for the offer, but I'm not sure that's really of much benefit for now. The real question is how much interest there is for this and whether it's worthwhile for someone to spin up a project to provide kits. I can provide support, but I don't have the time to produce them myself, which is why Randy is talking with Martin.

    Along those lines, an idea of what people would be using it for would be helpful. If people are interested in option 2 (driving display and other mods), it will require more work and be more expensive.

    #29 5 years ago

    Great stuff. In for a Pro kit if it happens for sure.

    #30 5 years ago

    If I could get something plug and play to sync a Color DMD to the ELI kit in my Tron I would buy a Color DMD immediately. If there's a list being built, put me on it, thanks!

    #32 5 years ago
    Quoted from Don1:

    If I could get something plug and play to sync a Color DMD to the ELI kit in my Tron I would buy a Color DMD immediately. If there's a list being built, put me on it, thanks!

    As would I!

    #33 5 years ago
    Quoted from Don1:

    If I could get something plug and play to sync a Color DMD to the ELI kit in my Tron I would buy a Color DMD immediately. If there's a list being built, put me on it, thanks!

    Yup - agree entirely.

    #34 5 years ago

    Just bought a sigma color dmd and bought eli's kit not so long ago. Really think this is an awesome combo. Will get it working in my pin but if connectors becomes available i'm in.

    #35 5 years ago

    So any news about a cable to have colordmd, pinballtopper speaker lights, undercab and pinbits Eli's ramp mod all in synch together with the game.

    I'm buying

    #36 5 years ago

    I will get a chance 2 week's from now but not until then for us.

    Quoted from Darth_Chris:So any news about a cable to have colordmd, pinballtopper speaker lights, undercab and pinbits Eli's ramp mod all in synch together with the game.
    I'm buying

    I will get a chance 2 week's from now but not until then for us. All I can say is it will come but either way you can enjoy a great product until the additional enhancement comes. I am only doing what I have requests for, currently Tron and Tron LE. So just a waiting game.

    #37 5 years ago

    Need something for integration for ACDC/Star Trek LE

    1 month later
    #38 5 years ago

    If Rock or Pinbits or anyone else is working on a kit for Tron Pro with Eli ramps, I don't want to step on any toes, but I wanted to share this.

    Some people doodle in their spare time. I "doodled" a board design in small increments over the past month. Depending on how you wanted to use this, it could be used with or without a microcontroller. It could drive a ColorDMD and speaker lights, undercab lighting, toppers, etc. if you populate the transistors. It could drive just the ColorDMD without needing the transistors. There are a lot of options.

    If anyone wants to run with this and finish a kit, just let me know and I'd be happy to share the design files. I got a quote of about $150 to have a batch of 50 bare boards made. I also have a pretty good head start on microcontroller code.

    tron_colordmd.png
    3 weeks later
    #39 5 years ago

    So...

    I couldn't handle letting this project just die, and I had a few boards made by OSHPark. They were $20 for 3 bare boards, then probably around $10 - $12 for parts (for 1 board).

    I simply jumped 5V over to the input, but if you wanted to sync speaker lights, undercabinet lights, a topper, etc. You could connect your 12V source to J6 and power all of them. Again, if anyone wants to make this into a kit to help out the guys who aren't quite up to a DIY, just let me know.

    I could also share the OSHPark project and microcontroller code for the DIY guys.
    IMG_2015.JPGIMG_2016.JPGIMG_2018.JPG

    #40 5 years ago

    Very nice! I would also be interested in a kit if one is developed (I know I do not have the technical expertise to do it myself).

    Excellent work!

    #41 5 years ago

    Herg, I'm not sure the pinouts on the final board are the same as the ones on your prototype.

    #42 5 years ago
    Quoted from ecurtz:

    Herg, I'm not sure the pinouts on the final board are the same as the ones on your prototype.

    They're not, but I brought the appropriate signals for both the proto and final into the MCU.
    http://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/colordmd-color-changing-tron-pinbits-eli-ramps-integration#post-1587744

    #43 5 years ago

    I don't own Tron but this is very cool. It really adds to this particular game.

    #44 5 years ago

    I'm in for a Pro kit if one is developed plug & play.

    #45 5 years ago

    herg, Are the J4 and J5 connections where you would connect RGB undercab or speaker light kit connections? Are they pinned +12, G, R, B (in that order) like the ColorDMD input pins are?

    #46 5 years ago

    I already have Eli's ramp mod but if I could buy an add on for it to do this it would certainly get me to buy a colour DMD.

    #47 5 years ago
    Quoted from DugFreez:

    herg, Are the J4 and J5 connections where you would connect RGB undercab or speaker light kit connections? Are they pinned +12, G, R, B (in that order) like the ColorDMD input pins are?

    Yes to both questions. I made them such that they are compatible with the LED strip controller pinout. I was just thinking today that I needed to look up your cables to make sure before mentioning them, but they should be plug and play. Right now, the firmware only uses J4, but J5 could be used as a second output to drive a different color to a second strip of LEDs. I thought it would be cool to split a set of speaker lights and have one yellow, one blue during LCMB.

    Quoted from QuarterGrabber:

    I already have Eli's ramp mod but if I could buy an add on for it to do this it would certainly get me to buy a colour DMD.

    That's pretty much the idea. A kit would likely need to include this board and cables, but Eli's lights and the ColorDMD would be separate.

    #48 5 years ago
    Quoted from herg:

    I thought it would be cool to split a set of speaker lights and have one yellow, one blue during LCMB.

    You thought right!

    #49 5 years ago

    +3 for TRONLE solution

    #50 5 years ago

    Sorry, I have no intentions of doing anything on the LE myself. Unless someone wants to get me one.

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