ColorDMD - LCD versus LED?

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By goatdan

6 months ago


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5 key posts have been marked in this topic

Post #3 Vendor update on available combinations Posted by Dmod (6 months ago)

Post #23 Vendor update on hardware revision for future display boards Posted by Dmod (6 months ago)

Post #30 Led displays take less power than lcd setups Posted by Dmod (6 months ago)

Post #64 Discussion on smoothing algorithm Posted by Dmod (6 months ago)

Post #90 Video of the led display in spiderman Posted by bobukcat (5 months ago)


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There are 362 posts in topic. You are on page 1 of 8.
#1 6 months ago

I'm looking at potentially starting to change over some of my games to ColorDMDs soon - I'm finally starting to set up the gameroom at the new house. When I do, I have recently seen that ColorDMD is starting to sell color LED boards... and they said they would have a further announcement about this at Expo.

From what I can see on their web site, Tommy is the only game that currently has an option about which set to use. Does anyone know more about what is going on with this option? Is the "traditional" ColorDMD the way to go? Does the LED version give any bonuses (other than the $30 cheaper price tag)? Not sure what to go with when I decide, and I can't seem to find much info on it either!

#2 6 months ago
Quoted from goatdan:

I'm looking at potentially starting to change over some of my games to ColorDMDs soon - I'm finally starting to set up the gameroom at the new house. When I do, I have recently seen that ColorDMD is starting to sell color LED boards... and they said they would have a further announcement about this at Expo.
From what I can see on their web site, Tommy is the only game that currently has an option about which set to use. Does anyone know more about what is going on with this option? Is the "traditional" ColorDMD the way to go? Does the LED version give any bonuses (other than the $30 cheaper price tag)? Not sure what to go with when I decide, and I can't seem to find much info on it either!

Hey Dan
I don't know if the LCD will fit Tommy for one thing so you may have to go the LED route for that particular game.
Not exactly sure though.

12
#3 6 months ago

All game ROMs will be available soon for both LED and LCD on the SUPPORT page, but the store won't list configurations with problematic installations. This doesn't mean you can't Macguyver something if you really want to, but it won't be supported.

Examples of problematic installations: LCD will not work for CV (space is too small) or T3 (game mechanisms are in the way). LCD is also not recommended for DE games with plastic speaker panels as the LCD sits too far back in the cabinet unless you permanently modify the speaker panel.

Pros/Cons:

LED: 128x32 discrete RGB LEDs. Small form factor. Brighter and more vivid colors. Fixed smaller size dots - can't take advantage of smoothing or other rendering modes. Susceptible to ghosting artifacts due to undesirable capacitive effects.

LCD: 1920x1080 backlit LCD screen (only a portion of the screen is used). Original proven design sold since early 2012. Pixels are used to draw dots. Six rendering modes (DOTS, DOTXL, TILE, 8BIT, SCAN, and HIRES). Large dots and smoothing modes minimize black space making text easier to read. Smoothing modes are popular for cartoon-like animation.

#4 6 months ago

Personally We like the LCD version whenever it is available. We have the LCD version in Tommy and really like it. The ability to change the style of the animations is a plus, which you can only do with the LCD version. Also with the LED style there are options other than color DMD. But I think the LCD advantage of color is really a nice option so I get color DMD wherever available as long as it's the LCD flavor.

#5 6 months ago

I prefer LCD in hi-res. I have the LED on CV and it looks great but I do see bleeding. I don't think I would like LED on other games as much. I'd have to try it. So far, LCD is my pick if it fits.

#6 6 months ago

Thanks everyone, good to know! For those who have modified DE games, how difficult is it to do? I'm probably going to make myself a list and start going through it one by one

#7 6 months ago

Modified my Jurassic park there is a thread on Pinside to complete the task and was not difficult ! I went with an LED panel on tales from the crypt ... I prefer the LCD however no disappoints with either!
Just waiting for the colourization to be completed ! It will come one day !
Randy and the crew of ColorDmd are very helpful!
It

image (resized).jpeg

image (resized).jpeg

#8 6 months ago

Wow, I'm shocked at all the slightly negative remarks towards the LED ColorDMD. I have 5 LCD ColorDMD's and really do like them ( especially the dots XL mode ). But when I was at expo last week and saw the LED version in Star Wars and Terminator 3 I was blown away with how vivid and bright it looked. I bought an LED version with the intention on putting it in my Ghostbusters but I think I might play musical ColorDMD and see which game it looks best in once they come out with all the support for all games. Bottom line I'm just saying I think the LED version is much better than people are making it seem. But than again that's just my opinion

#9 6 months ago

LCD is great but the LED look is really brilliant. It feels more like a real DMD but in full color. I only have one in CV, as I had no choice with that one - but I really want to see how more games look with the LED. I only use Dots XL on LCD, so not having the smear options doesn't matter for me.

#10 6 months ago
Quoted from Dmod:

LED: Susceptible to ghosting artifacts due to undesirable capacitive effects.

I haven't noticed anything like that on CV. There are some flaws in the colorizing rom where it's a few frames late with the color here and there but it seems like a programming issue and not a hardware problem.

I think the LED version is much better. This is coming from someone who uses the LCD model in regular dots mode, I don't care for the funny smoothing modes. I have yet to colorize a TSPP and NGG but it's going to be LED or nothing, so do hurry with the ROM updates. And hurry with JP, too!

#11 6 months ago
Quoted from tjsynkral:

I think the LED version is much better. This is coming from someone who uses the LCD model in regular dots mode, I don't care for the funny smoothing modes.

LCD is much better because of Tile mode... which is not funny or smooth... it's square

#12 6 months ago

On the LCD colordmd the different styles are really cool. and every game should be viewed in each style to see which one is best. We have over 35 of the colorDMDs at the Ann Arbor pinball museum, and there isn't one style we use over another. Each game is micro-managed to see which produces the best LCD style.

But to clarify, if the colorDMD LCD is available for a game, that's really the way we like to go. The LED DMDs (regardless of who makes them) we just personally don't like as much. But this may be a "vanilla versus chocolate" type argument. That is, there are fans of both LCD and LED, and neither is "right".

As far as installation of the LCD panel in dataeast games, yes it is a bit more involved. You have to grind the back top edge of where the DMD panel originally mounted to make the LCD panel fit. Also you have to open the back box in a specific order with the LCD panel installed. That is, remove backglass. Fold down DMD panel. Then open the insert light panel. The light panel goes behind the taller LCD panel and you can't open it (to get to the boards) without removing the DMD panel first. This isn't a big deal to me personally, but i could see how some people might complain about that.

#13 6 months ago

Here is a pic of the Tommy with the colorDMD LCD installed.

tommy (resized).jpg

#14 6 months ago

Bit of a troll post but I think some people are voting pro-lcd because that is what they have in their machines (all that was available till now). There's always a little hate whenever there is a new kid on the block! I must say that the LED looked absolutely stunning at EXPO.

#15 6 months ago

Having seen the LED at Expo as well as having the LCD in my Roadshow, I would purchase another LCD as I think the LED are just too bright...

#16 6 months ago
Quoted from cfh:

On the LCD colordmd the different styles are really cool. and every game should be viewed in each style to see which one is best. We have over 35 of the colorDMDs at the Ann Arbor pinball museum, and there isn't one style we use over another. Each game is micro-managed to see which produces the best LCD style.
On the LED we only have Cirquis Voltaire in LED colordmd. For Terminator3 we have a different brand made by a couple guys here in Michigan. Frankly it is WAY better than the colorDMD version, as far as the colorization. It isn't even close frankly. And their price point is $100 less than colorDMD. They also have done Jurassic Park and Terminator2, and we should be getting those into our machines soon.
But to clarify, if the colorDMD LCD is available for a game, that's really the way we like to go. The LED DMDs (regardless of who makes them) we just personally don't like as much. But this may be a "vanilla versus chocolate" type argument. That is, there are fans of both LCD and LED, and neither is "right".
As far as installation of the LCD panel in dataeast games, yes it is a bit more involved. You have to grind the back top edge of where the DMD panel originally mounted to make the LCD panel fit. Also you have to open the back box in a specific order with the LCD panel installed. That is, remove backglass. Fold down DMD panel. Then open the insert light panel. The light panel goes behind the taller LCD panel and you can't open it (to get to the boards) without removing the DMD panel first. This isn't a big deal to me personally, but i could see how some people might complain about that.

would you mind sharing the name of the alt. color company in Michigan?

#17 6 months ago

I have the LED in my T3 and LCD in my MET Pro, the games are one game apart. After I play T3 I'll switch to MET and while MET has more detail the colors look washed out compared to T3, it doesn't bother me it's just the nature of the beast. I'd REALLY like to see Color DMD come out with an HD version, 4 times the res. for the LCD but don't think they can do that. They both have their good and not so good points. Just like everything in life there are trade offs. I have the LCD in my ST Pro and am waiting for the rom to be announced for it.

#18 6 months ago

I currently have an LCD in Tron and my Dad's Spider-Man. It is a great upgrade, and however I Really like tiles on Tron, it is hard to see that the DMD is even on when standing away from the lineup.

I am fully interested in the LED version. The added brightness will help it keep up with the other DMDs in the lineup. Plus, Tron is already super bright, and I'm guessing the LED will better match what's going on in the game.

As soon as Tron support drops for the LED, I'll be dropping the cash to get it.

#19 6 months ago

There are brightness and contrast controls on the LED ColorDMD, just as on the LCD ColorDMD.

#20 6 months ago

I'm about to colorize my tspp and I have the same question as most above. I'm looking for the brightest color.
But I guess it's a moot point at the moment cause there aren't any stock atm. Any news on the restock?

#21 6 months ago

LCD vs. LED is totally your preference, just like choosing LEDs for your machine.

#22 6 months ago
Quoted from Dmod:

All game ROMs will be available soon for both LED and LCD on the SUPPORT page, but the store won't list configurations with problematic installations. This doesn't mean you can't Macguyver something if you really want to, but it won't be supported.
Examples of problematic installations: LCD will not work for CV (space is too small) or T3 (game mechanisms are in the way). LCD is also not recommended for DE games with plastic speaker panels as the LCD sits too far back in the cabinet unless you permanently modify the speaker panel.
Pros/Cons:
LED: 128x32 discrete RGB LEDs. Small form factor. Brighter and more vivid colors. Fixed smaller size dots - can't take advantage of smoothing or other rendering modes. Susceptible to ghosting artifacts due to undesirable capacitive effects.
LCD: 1920x1080 backlit LCD screen (only a portion of the screen is used). Original proven design sold since early 2012. Pixels are used to draw dots. Six rendering modes (DOTS, DOTXL, TILE, 8BIT, SCAN, and HIRES). Large dots and smoothing modes minimize black space making text easier to read. Smoothing modes are popular for cartoon-like animation.

I may have missed this, but are they compatible with SPIKE yet? I do not see it as a option when ordering, only see WPC/95 or SAM/Whitestar? I'd really like an LED one in my new GB coming soon. Thanks in advance.

#23 6 months ago

SIGMA 3.1 added spike functionality in single color mode but you will need a power converter to get 5V/12V from the game.

For all new displays starting with the October production release (and also including the August LED pilot run), we've updated the controller board so you'll only need 12V.

#24 6 months ago

The LED has a nice viewing angle and looks as sharp from the side as it does head on, whereas LCD gets duller as your viewing angle increases. Doesn't impact the player as much but when watching someone play the LED is nice. I never plan on using anything but dots so the LED is my preferred display but can see why others prefer the LCD as with all the customization.

#25 6 months ago

I have seen the ColorDMD LCDs and they do some wonderful things with the animations on a pin, but to me the physical attributes of the LCD panel does not resemble a 25 year old pinball machine part. The ColorDMD LED looks like the old part with magical colors added.
If you are not concerned about adding 'new' technologies to an old pin, then that would be a big 'don't care'.

There are of course the other reasons I like ColorDMD LEDs that have been discussed like fit, brightness, and viewing angle that add into my LED bias.

I do fully support putting modern LCD panels in newly designed pins. JJP rocks!

Just my personal view, just talking up the ColorDMD LEDs to replace gas displays.

#26 6 months ago

So this might be interesting maybe...

I too saw the LED at Pinball Expo and when available i plan to swap the two LCD colordmd's that i have in monster bash and star trek:TNG over to LED. I love the LCD in dots mode the other modes are not that great in my view so when i saw the LED with the dots it was a no brainier for me - it looks epic!!!

Also have to add that the colordmd customer service is fantastic and i had a great discussion with (randy?) on the stand. I'll also be putting in an LED one into my ghostbusters then living of bread and water for a few months :))

Neil.

#27 6 months ago

How do they compare as far as power consumption?

#28 6 months ago
Quoted from Dmod:

SIGMA 3.1 added spike functionality in single color mode but you will need a power converter to get 5V/12V from the game.
For all new displays starting with the October production release (and also including the August LED pilot run), we've updated the controller board so you'll only need 12V.

What is best for TSPP? Any in stock?

#29 6 months ago
Quoted from Mrawesome44:

I'm about to colorize my tspp and I have the same question as most above. I'm looking for the brightest color.

Quoted from Guinnesstime:

What is best for TSPP? Any in stock?

I would highly recommend LCD for TSPP, because it looks incredible, and the brightness can be maxed out in the menu settings, so brightness is not really an issue. Like Randy said, the smoothing modes are popular for cartoon-like animation.

» YouTube video

» YouTube video

#30 6 months ago
Quoted from PinJump:

How do they compare as far as power consumption?

LED requires less power than LCD.

#31 6 months ago
Quoted from Guinnesstime:

What is best for TSPP? Any in stock?

LEDs are available now though titles won't be listed in the shop until firmware has been ported. LCDs should be back in stock within the next week or two.

#32 6 months ago

Besides the fact that the LED displays have richer colors than the LCD, the graphics were designed for a DMD, and the LED displays have the exact same dot configuration. In most cases LED is the way to go, unless you prefer one of the special rendering modes.

Quoted from thall17:

I would purchase another LCD as I think the LED are just too bright...

Most DMDs have plexi installed in front, pretty easy to swap in another color to dim it a bit.

-16
#33 6 months ago

Buy a Pin2dmd LED and do the colorization yourself. Save a couple hundred.

17
#34 6 months ago
Quoted from tjc02002:

Buy a Pin2dmd LED and do the colorization yourself. Save a couple hundred.

You make it sound like colorization is something simple you do in just a few minutes. My time is worth money and there is NO WAY that I could colorize a game to the quality of one of the ColorDMD titles in less than 40 hours (and likely far more time). So, pay myself $5 an hour to save a couple of hundred or just buy one and enjoy my game the time I would have spent colorizing it? Pretty simple equation to me.

#35 6 months ago

I totally agree as far as spending the time to color the images. Its just an option to consider. It's more for someone who likes to tinker. Eventually there will be many titles colored for Pin2dmd but right now there isn't.

#36 6 months ago

My opinion about colorDMD is: buy the LCD. It's a little annoying because the size of the LCD doesn't fit nicely all the time, but the dot size options and high res options are really sweet.

#37 6 months ago
Quoted from tjc02002:

Buy a Pin2dmd LED and do the colorization yourself. Save a couple hundred.

Learn from my experience! Don't discount the commercial products.

...A note of warning: If you're considering coloring a game yourself as a way to save money over purchasing a ColorDMD version, think twice. It is seriously time consuming. I'm well over 100 man-hours into the colorization process and this does not count the hardware portion. ...

https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/spider-man-ve-smve-smartdmd-colorization#post-3226641

#38 6 months ago
Quoted from Dmod:

LEDs are available now though titles won't be listed in the shop until firmware has been ported. LCDs should be back in stock within the next week or two.

When Walking Dead is available will it only be LED or will you be able to use the LCD's as well?
I'd like to get ahead of the game and have the display in my game when the ROM is available.

#39 6 months ago
Quoted from cleland:

When Walking Dead is available will it only be LED or will you be able to use the LCD's as well?
I'd like to get ahead of the game and have the display in my game when the ROM is available.

Games going forward are going to be available for both displays. Since TWD is a standard stern ''new" backbox either would work. *BUT* you should not buy a display based on future hoped for support. It may come, it may not. Buy a display for what it can do now.

#41 6 months ago

Think I might go for LED on my Doctor Who so I can still use the doctors lamp board.

#42 6 months ago
Quoted from cfh:

Here is a pic of the Tommy with the colorDMD LCD installed.

So, is it a case of you take down the speaker panel before opening up the backbox? Just trying to figure out how this all works, and I don't have a bunch to compare to physically here. All of this input is super appreciated I might end up starting with one of each and then swap them around to see what looks best in what. They tend to hold their value from what I have seen, so it shouldn't be like I'm losing a bunch of money if I opt to not use one or the other.

#43 6 months ago
Quoted from goatdan:

So, is it a case of you take down the speaker panel before

On the LCD yes as the top of screen blocks the door from opening ! It's a minor issue that you get used to!

#44 6 months ago
Quoted from transprtr4u:

On the LCD yes as the top of screen blocks the door from opening ! It's a minor issue that you get used to!

Is this for all games, or just the DE ones?

#45 6 months ago
Quoted from goatdan:

Is this for all games, or just the DE ones?

Every head style is different, but in general the WMS and Stern heads are fine with the LCD screen. Gavin just put an LCD in his new GNR at expo and found a mounting position where it would clear the door just barely, but he had to reverse the channel at the bottom of the speaker panel so the taller part was in front -- not sure if it varies game to game for DE with wood speaker panels or not.

13
#46 6 months ago

The smoothing modes look like garbage. You're all monsters with poor taste. It's dot art, keep it as dot art. Color looks fantastic, but those chunky looking smoothing modes or square dots are awful.

I would love if the LED display supported the same set of color ROMs that the LCD displays have. That would be fantastic.

#47 6 months ago
Quoted from jar155:

The smoothing modes look like garbage. You're all monsters with poor taste. It's dot art, keep it as dot art. Color looks fantastic, but those chunky looking smoothing modes or square dots are awful.
I would love if the LED display supported the same set of color ROMs that the LCD displays have. That would be fantastic.

It's in the works! According to the last email newsletter from ColorDMD, ROMS will hopefully be available by mid November. My Spiderman has a LED display installed just waiting for the code.

#48 6 months ago
Quoted from metahugh:

It's in the works! According to the last email newsletter from ColorDMD, ROMS will hopefully be available by mid November. My Spiderman has a LED display installed just waiting for the code.

Spider-Man looks AMAZING with a ColorDMD. With LED, it should be pretty incredible.

#49 6 months ago
Quoted from jar155:

The smoothing modes look like garbage. You're all monsters with poor taste. It's dot art, keep it as dot art. Color looks fantastic, but those chunky looking smoothing modes or square dots are awful.
I would love if the LED display supported the same set of color ROMs that the LCD displays have. That would be fantastic.

The beauty of the current set of options from color Dmd is Just that: options.

Some people prefer one look, others a different one. But nobody in this scenario is a monster.

#50 6 months ago
Quoted from jar155:

The smoothing modes look like garbage. You're all monsters with poor taste. It's dot art, keep it as dot art. Color looks fantastic, but those chunky looking smoothing modes or square dots are awful

If you cannot find any other modes for any of the games you own other than just dots to be pleasing to your liking, you are either too old to learn to appreciate it or got your head in the dirt.

I mean, come on, look at the HiRes TSPP video that Razorbak86 linked to, how the hell can you not like that? It is like watching the Simpsons cartoon.

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