(Topic ID: 171786)

ColorDMD - LCD versus LED?


By goatdan

4 years ago



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  • 818 posts
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  • Latest reply 52 days ago by Markharris2000
  • Topic is favorited by 94 Pinsiders

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There are 818 posts in this topic. You are on page 12 of 17.
#551 2 years ago
Quoted from jj44114:

I have a TAF with L-5 cpu rom. Will the color dmd work with that rom. ColorDMD’s website says L-7 is required.

Yes, it wil. At worse case, you may see some animations white instead of being colored.

#552 2 years ago

Just installed an Indy LCD at the museum. DotsXL all the way on this one.

Dots is OK.

Scan and Hi-res look too “goopy”. Probably most others will from this era too, as the design process assumed DMD would be the output format (much like scanlines on classic video games - in a similar way I use scanline generators on LED panels to make them look more authentic).

Pixel is good for scores, bleh for everything else.

Worst is 8-Bit. Goopy AND blocky. Yuk.

3B4014B4-85BD-4A37-8605-2CB8F1636865 (resized).jpeg

#553 2 years ago

yeah, it's all a matter of personal taste.

with the LCD panels, you have those options available and the games with video footage (iron man, avatar, ac/dc, transformers, etc...) all tend to be much more readable with either dots XL or pixel mode

#554 2 years ago
Quoted from NicoVolta:

Just installed an Indy LCD at the museum. DotsXL all the way on this one.
Dots is OK.
Scan and Hi-res look too “goopy”. Probably most others will from this era too, as the design process assumed DMD would be the output format (much like scanlines on classic video games - in a similar way I use scanline generators on LED panels to make them look more authentic).
Pixel is good for scores, bleh for everything else.
Worst is 8-Bit. Goopy AND blocky. Yuk.
[quoted image]

Not all games - later model games like SS and MB look phenomenal in scan mode - it’s a good combo between dots and the hires

#555 2 years ago
Quoted from Rdoyle1978:

Not all games - later model games like SS and MB look phenomenal in scan mode - it’s a good combo between dots and the hires

Disagree, scan mode looks terrible on all games to me. Just not a fan of the "smoothing" that creates jagged ridged edges.

DotsXL4life.

#556 2 years ago
Quoted from Maken:

Disagree, scan mode looks terrible on all games to me. Just not a fan of the "smoothing" that creates jagged ridged edges.
DotsXL4life.

Good thing we’ve got all these options!

#557 2 years ago

Every time I order I debate....
But I go LCD. I love DOTSXL
I’m a ColorDMD junkie.....maybe 10 now. Idk
BEST MOD EVER

1 week later
#558 2 years ago

I just installed an lcd dmd in my TS and I’m not sure I like it. It’s dark. I like the dotxl and the hires but it is not bright enough. I wish I could brighten the colors a little more. In a dark room it looks fine but during the day or when the lights are on the colors are washed out. Maybe I am just spoiled with the led dmd I have for my DH.

#559 2 years ago
Quoted from Scoot:

I just installed an lcd dmd in my TS and I’m not sure I like it. It’s dark. I like the dotxl and the hires but it is not bright enough. I wish I could brighten the colors a little more. In a dark room it looks fine but during the day or when the lights are on the colors are washed out. Maybe I am just spoiled with the led dmd I have for my DH.

Take a look at the game glass. NO GLARE from the DMD. That’s the trade off.

#560 2 years ago
Quoted from Scoot:

I just installed an lcd dmd in my TS and I’m not sure I like it. It’s dark. I like the dotxl and the hires but it is not bright enough. I wish I could brighten the colors a little more. In a dark room it looks fine but during the day or when the lights are on the colors are washed out. Maybe I am just spoiled with the led dmd I have for my DH.

That is exactly the reason why I only buy the led version. I was also not interested in color dmd before the led version because it didn't look original. I do admit that you need to get the settings for the led one right because it doesn't look good if it's set to bright or with not enough contrast. But to each their own of course.

#561 2 years ago

LCD brightness and contrast can be set from 0-9. Is there an optimal setting or does each situation require different settings?

Seems on typical LCD screens I go high contrast and dial down the brightness until the black levels look good.

#562 2 years ago
Quoted from NicoVolta:

Is there an optimal setting or does each situation require different settings?

I have installed and used like 30 ColorLCD and never changed a brightness level or thought the brightness looked diff'rent from stock.

1 week later
#563 2 years ago

Sorry if this has already been covered, but do the LCDs get any type of burn in? I know the screen rotates images, but they are always the same images in the same locations.

#564 2 years ago
Quoted from NicoVolta:

LCD brightness and contrast can be set from 0-9. Is there an optimal setting or does each situation require different settings?
Seems on typical LCD screens I go high contrast and dial down the brightness until the black levels look good.

For best results, I recommend keeping contrast between 3-5. The default setting of 5 is good for most games and approximates the graylevels of the original factory DMD. For games that have video content, a lower contrast setting can help to improve the results as it drops the lower graylevels toward black and results in more spacing between gray levels.

Brightness only affects the backlight setting and can be set wherever you like.

#565 2 years ago

LCD is better. I have LCDs on most of my games, I ordered LED for my ACDC just to try it out and I regret going that way.

#566 2 years ago
Quoted from Goalie:

LCD is better. I have LCDs on most of my games, I ordered LED for my ACDC just to try it out and I regret going that way.

I understand that the Stern ACDC LED display has 16 shades of red to the animations. Being the game was colored for the LCD, looks like the color ROM may need to be tweaked for the LED.

The LED looks great in CV, Corvette, and LAH.

#567 2 years ago
Quoted from PinballManiac40:

I understand that the Stern ACDC LED display has 16 shades of red to the animations. Being the game was colored for the LCD, looks like the color ROM may need to be tweaked for the LED.
The LED looks great in CV, Corvette, and LAH.

The SAM display driver outputs 13 shades. The ColorDMD board maps this to 18-bit color and drives either LED and LCD.

With contrast setting of 5 the ColorDMD LED running in SIGMA (single-color) mode, and the original factory LED should appear similar. The main difference is the dot size. The original factory display has larger dots with less black space between them. It's the tradeoff for trying to fit 3 LED emitters (red, green, blue) in the same space as a single red emitter.

By tweaking the contrast setting, you can boost the 13 levels above black (which also compresses the spacing between then), or lower the darker levels toward black and increase the spacing.

#568 2 years ago
Quoted from Dmod:

The SAM display driver outputs 13 shades. The ColorDMD board maps this to 18-bit color and drives either LED and LCD.
With contrast setting of 5 the ColorDMD LED running in SIGMA (single-color) mode, and the original factory LED should appear similar. The main difference is the dot size. The original factory display has larger dots with less black space between them. It's the tradeoff for trying to fit 3 LED emitters (red, green, blue) in the same space as a single red emitter.
By tweaking the contrast setting, you can boost the 13 levels above black (which also compresses the spacing between then), or lower the darker levels toward black and increase the spacing.

Technical stuff...I like that. Thank you for the correction in number of shades and more details about the hardware.

#569 2 years ago

dmod, when I was suggesting a tweak, I was thinking more on the lines of choosing a lighter shade of certain colors for the LED where there are darker animations. I believe brown is pretty dark on the LED display for games like AC/DC, but it looks fine on the LCD.

#570 2 years ago

Got it. Thanks for the clarification.

#571 2 years ago

Just installed LED on my GNR and LCD on my MOPLE, love both! Great upgrades!! Had a Comet glare guard installed on the LED and did not like how un clear it looked so removed it.

1 week later
#572 2 years ago

Sure would be nice if there could be an LCD version that fits like the LED one does. The physical packaging of the LED version sure is sweet. I've kind of gotten used to the way the LED display looks on Metallica and the polarized glare guard made a huge difference, but...it doesn't look as good as the LCD to me.

#573 2 years ago

I have to say after a month of ownership of a lcd on my Shadow, I have grown to love it. I still wish it was slightly brighter but the options like dotsxl and hi res has won me over to the darker side...

#574 2 years ago
Quoted from Grandnational007:

Anybody have one in a J*B yet? I usually prefer lcd over led, but this one might look better with the latter.
I'm probably swaying towards lcd, but have yet to see either installed in an actual machine in person.
Choices! I love 'em!

I have an lcd on my Jackbot and it looks GREAT.

#575 2 years ago

Paul, what is your favourite- LCD or LED or a combo of both -depending on the game

#576 2 years ago
Quoted from Scoot:

I have to say after a month of ownership of a lcd on my Shadow, I have grown to love it. I still wish it was slightly brighter but the options like dotsxl and hi res has won me over to the darker side...

Brighter? Have you turned up the brightness level at all?

#577 2 years ago
Quoted from MustangPaul:

I have an lcd on my Jackbot and it looks GREAT.

Post some pics.

This thread is severely lacking in the pic department to show why people like certain display choices.

#578 2 years ago

It is really hard to get pictures and even videos to show the exact real life colors of either display. It is something to experience in person. There are many ColorDMDs on display at most pinball shows these days. Even then, you still may not find the title you want to see.

#579 2 years ago

A collector visited the museum the other day and remarked, “Oh cool! Your Addams Family has a color LED. I have some color LED’s too. Looks nice! But hey, what is THAT?”

A9C32916-230A-4E1A-8661-31EFF6C5FB25 (resized).jpeg

“Wow... that is LCD?”

“Yes, it is using the DotsXL mode which enhances the basic dot shape and fills more of the black areas with color, while preserving the grid. Like it?”

(momentary speechlessness)

“Yeah. I think I need that now.”

2 weeks later
#580 2 years ago

So.. what display to get for GHOSTBUSTERS!!

Thinking about the Extra Ball and Ecto sequences- what will be better LCD or LED?

I’m pretty happy with all LCD (have it in all my B/W games)

I haven’t seen a LED and want the best option

#581 2 years ago

while I prefer the look of the LED panels for the dot animations, I think that the games that have digitized film footage look better with the LCD panels using either the dots XL or square dot mode (which reduces, but does not eliminate the black or [dead] space between the dots

#582 2 years ago

I recently installed an LED model in my Walking Dead premium. It’s definitely a different look. Much brighter. I have several LCD’s installed as well and I prefer the LCD.

#583 2 years ago
Quoted from Pinhead1982:

So.. what display to get for GHOSTBUSTERS!!
Thinking about the Extra Ball and Ecto sequences- what will be better LCD or LED?
I’m pretty happy with all LCD (have it in all my B/W games)
I haven’t seen a LED and want the best option

IMHO, LCD looks best on Spike games because of the brightness ramping difference between LCD and LEDs. The various levels of brightness are clearer on the LCD and GB makes heavy use of all 16 brightness levels because of the 3D renderings.

#584 2 years ago

I want to buy from my friend "ColorDMD", he used it at STERN WHITESTAR, will he work with my Indiana Jones Williams?
Can I change the software?

#585 2 years ago
Quoted from fly:

I want to buy from my friend "ColorDMD", he used it at STERN WHITESTAR, will he work with my Indiana Jones Williams?
Can I change the software?

Yes you can change the software, but I believe it will require a different power cable as well.

#586 2 years ago

maybe they'll have both LCD and LED on display this weekend at the show

#587 2 years 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 see that Color DMD answers my question from a year ago showing that LCD is the better option as he states above.

#588 2 years ago

Someone was saying that there may be new hardware revealed at expo any info?

A smaller form factor LCD or a LED with bigger dots/less black space would be killer

#589 2 years ago
Quoted from gunstarhero:

Yes you can change the software, but I believe it will require a different power cable as well.

Thank you,

I bought a PCB ColorDMD from my friend without an LCD, he will send it to me in a few days, I am impatient and I would like to create a fixing,
Can anyone give me the length and width of this PCB ??

#590 2 years ago

LCD all the way !!!

#591 2 years ago

I want to make a separate mounting for PCBs and separately for LCD, so I need only PCB dimensions.

1 month later
#592 2 years ago

Just installed an LED ColorDMD in my Star Trek: The Next Generation and loving it! Thanks dmod for the help with this one.

Have them in my Indiana Jones: The Pinball Adventure and Theatre of Magic as well. I'm hooked...

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#593 2 years ago

Long time listener, first time caller (hopefully of many). My TWD came with a ColorDMD (LCD) and I'm in love with it, but a local friend bought an LED version for his SPIKE system and didn't care for it and sold it to me at a very nice discount.

Two questions:
1.) Is the ColorDMD interchangeable among Spike, Sam and WPC games?
2.) Which of these games do you think the LED version would look best in (assuming the above is true?)

TZ, ToM, AC/DC Premium, LOTR, Metallica (need to wait for update to 1.8), X-Men, Star Trek

#594 2 years ago
Quoted from wxforecaster:

Long time listener, first time caller (hopefully of many). My TWD came with a ColorDMD (LCD) and I'm in love with it, but a local friend bought an LED version for his SPIKE system and didn't care for it and sold it to me at a very nice discount.
Two questions:
1.) Is the ColorDMD interchangeable among Spike, Sam and WPC games?
2.) Which of these games do you think the LED version would look best in (assuming the above is true?)
TZ, ToM, AC/DC Premium, LOTR, Metallica (need to wait for update to 1.8), X-Men, Star Trek

The display itself is universal. To use it in a different machine type, you just need the proper cables which you can get in the accessories section on the Colordmd store once You decide.

The LEDs look better in the games with only 3 brightness levels (wpc, white Star) than they do in the newer sterns.

#595 2 years ago
Quoted from epthegeek:

The LEDs look better in the games with only 3 brightness levels (wpc, sam) than they do in the newer sterns.

What do you mean with 3 brightness levels?

#596 2 years ago
Quoted from Davefinn:

Just installed an LED ColorDMD in my Star Trek: The Next Generation and loving it!

I also installed an LED ColorDMD today. Put it in my TSPP an absolutely love it. Glad I went with the LED ver.

#597 2 years ago
Quoted from Koos:

What do you mean with 3 brightness levels?

Just what it says. WMS and early stern games only use 3 brightness levels for dmd dots. High, medium, and low. SAM used 13, spike uses 16.

I mixed up Sam/white star in my earlier post; will edit.

#598 2 years ago
Quoted from wxforecaster:

Long time listener, first time caller (hopefully of many). My TWD came with a ColorDMD (LCD) and I'm in love with it, but a local friend bought an LED version for his SPIKE system and didn't care for it and sold it to me at a very nice discount.
Two questions:
1.) Is the ColorDMD interchangeable among Spike, Sam and WPC games?
2.) Which of these games do you think the LED version would look best in (assuming the above is true?)
TZ, ToM, AC/DC Premium, LOTR, Metallica (need to wait for update to 1.8), X-Men, Star Trek

With the SPIKE install kit, you can install into any of your other Stern games. For newer Stern games with metal speaker panels, you'll need a clear display shield to replace the red one that shipped with the game.

TZ and ToM will need a WPC installation kit (available on the ACCESSORIES page of our store site).

#599 2 years ago

Just got my LED today for TWD Pre and its quite amazing, I like it much more than the LCD version. Its really just personal preference and I could see how its not for everyone.

#600 2 years ago
Quoted from Dmod:

With the SPIKE install kit, you can install into any of your other Stern games. For newer Stern games with metal speaker panels, you'll need a clear display shield to replace the red one that shipped with the game.
TZ and ToM will need a WPC installation kit (available on the ACCESSORIES page of our store site).

From the horses mouth, do you side with the opinion that the LEDs are preferred on older games w/ limited brightness levels as opposed to newer games w/ substantially more brightness levels and more full animation art?

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