(Topic ID: 171786)

ColorDMD - LCD versus LED?


By goatdan

4 years ago



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  • Latest reply 49 days ago by Markharris2000
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There are 818 posts in this topic. You are on page 15 of 17.
#701 1 year ago

You got pics of your fix? Im interested.

#702 1 year ago
Quoted from shovelhed:

You got pics of your fix? Im interested.

There's some more pics in this old thread comparing GB without and ST with the new panel:

https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/color-led-display-cover-panel-to-improve-contrast.

They're listed on my shop page now: http://ccpinball.com/shop.html

#703 1 year ago

I've used the anti-glare DMD film from Pinball Life to great effect in the past to remove light glare off the PF from shining against the LED display and to "flatten" some of the apparently brighter blue colour (on MET).

https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/colordmd-lcd-versus-led/page/10#post-4153654

I recently picked up a Tron that had a ColorLCD installed and I thought it looked rather cruddy with the particular style of "overcompressed" video animations on that game so I traded the ColorLCD for a ColorLED and it is *much* better. The higher contrast and smaller but brighter pixels on the LED display provides an effect that is much richer/more alive for the video segments vs the LCD display and better resembles the original plasma display.

I also tried a PBL anti-glare sheet on Tron too but found that in the process of "evening out" the relative brightness it removed the "magic" - so didn't keep it. On Tron in particular the PF light reflecting off the LEDs and the pop of the naked LED pixels suits the game perfectly.

So is LED always the better option - no. I would say it is really dependent on your specific game. If you have bright speaker lights then the LED is going provide a much brighter display (relatively) and with the anti-glare film it really becomes a far superior version of the LCD "dots" mode.

However, a lot of people like the display options provided by the LCD (Dots XL, god-foresaken "hi-rez" mode, etc.) SYMMV.

#704 1 year ago
Quoted from HighVoltage:

the off "pixels" on LED displays reflect way more light than an LCD, resulting in poor blacks

My experience is when the LCD is showing black, it looks more like a lit greyish color.

The LCD just didn't have the same contrast to me.

#705 1 year ago
Quoted from RTS:

My experience is when the LCD is showing black, it looks more like a lit greyish color.
The LCD just didn't have the same contrast to me.

Both of those can actually be true, but it doesn't mean the LED is capable of being darker than the LCD. Have you ever had chance to compared side-by-side?

I actually plan to switch out an LCD from my Fish Tales and install an LED. I'll try to remember to take some side-by-side pictures of the displays in different light conditions and post them. From what I remember, before I put my improved panel over the LED on ST it looked lighter compared to the LCD in the adjacent machine.

#706 1 year ago

If you are using the LED it really behooves you to get a anti-glare film/panel from your preferred source.

I love my LEDs with the comet pinball anti-glare guard.

Without the anti-glare guard you are going to see the individual dots as grey dots if there is enough light in your room.

#707 1 year ago

My new-to-me Getaway is prone to washed out ghosting problems, which I think means my DMD driver board is cooked. Is there a chance that the lower power draw of the ColorDMD solution, especially the LED version, will give a satisfactory result? Or should I head straight to RottenDog first?

84D185C3-08AE-4E48-83FD-4F056BE7B116 (resized).jpeg
#708 1 year ago
Quoted from spblat:

My new-to-me Getaway is prone to washed out ghosting problems, which I think means my DMD driver board is cooked. Is there a chance that the lower power draw of the ColorDMD solution, especially the LED version, will give a satisfactory result? Or should I head straight to RottenDog first?[quoted image]

Measure your voltages first. If they are bad, and likely the -112v and/or -100v measures higher, you can go straight to a ColorDMD and not worry about repairing those high voltages.

The ColorDMD will not be using the -112v, -100v, nor the 68v that comes from the DMD controller board.

#709 1 year ago

Thank you. They both were a good 25-30V high. Now I *need* ColorDMD. For safety!

#710 1 year ago
Quoted from HectorCM:

@goatdan I'm pulling the trigger for a LCD ColorDmd for my Metallica premium...should I also get the Gasket for glare? (As I read here is important for a game like Ghostbusters? Or is it not necessary?)
Thank you!!!

Sorry for missing this before. All my games come with whatever is standard for them. I've bought them all as show deals. So, I think, no gaskets.

#711 1 year ago

Here's some side-by-side pictures of LED and LCD. Same effect that I saw when I had them in side-by-side machines. I know which one looks darker to me.

First one is lying on floor, in medium lit room, lights are off to either side on ceiling, light path being about 45-degrees.

Second one is vertical in low light condition. (click to see full size)

Last one shows the reduction in reflection from the panels I use: it looks opaque, but let's light through.

LCDvsLED2 (resized).jpg

LCDvsLED1 (resized).jpg

LEDPanel (resized).jpg

#712 1 year ago

kind of an unfair comparison. yes, the LED panel is going to look darker without any power running to it due to the nature of the display. however, once you power it up, you will get no "true" blacks, but rather a dark gray from the glow of the display. the unlit LEDs will remain that way, unlit

it all comes down to personal preference and if you want to be able to change the way your display looks (8-bit, square dots, dots XL), then definitely get the LCD panel

#713 1 year ago

That's true, but I'd be surprised if it affects the verdict. I've already put my contrast-enhancing panel in games that have LED. But maybe next time I add a new LED display, I'll get pics before I swap out the clear panel.

With regards to black, you can say there's a different misleading aspect as well. LEDs have a higher contrast and brightness. Thus it can give the illusion that the background is blacker, but it's just relative.

There's also other factors at play. The LCD extends the full lengths of the panel, therefore there's no darker framing which makes the lack of blackness obvious. But the LEDs cover a smaller area, and the darker framing makes the lack of blackness more obvious, as the previous pictures demonstrate.

Another factor is the LCD is completely uniform in shade, the LEDs are not, with each LED being more reflective than the space between them. I think this is another area where the improved panel really helps.

I really like the LED display on my Star Trek, but only with the improved cover. On my LoTR I think the high res mode on an LCD works really well.

#714 1 year ago
Quoted from HighVoltage:

That's true, but I'd be surprised if it affects the verdict. I've already put my contrast-enhancing panel in games that have LED. But maybe next time I add a new LED display, I'll get pics before I swap out the clear panel.
With regards to black, you can say there's a different misleading aspect as well. LEDs have a higher contrast and brightness. Thus it can give the illusion that the background is blacker, but it's just relative.
There's also other factors at play. The LCD extends the full lengths of the panel, therefore there's no darker framing which makes the lack of blackness obvious. But the LEDs cover a smaller area, and the darker framing makes the lack of blackness more obvious, as the previous pictures demonstrate.
Another factor is the LCD is completely uniform in shade, the LEDs are not, with each LED being more reflective than the space between them. I think this is another area where the improved panel really helps.
I really like the LED display on my Star Trek, but only with the improved cover. On my LoTR I think the high res mode on an LCD works really well.

The key difference in the apparent black level when the displays are installed and the game is on is in their construction. LEDs, like all inherently superior display products, use actual lit pixels to form the image (ala CRT, Plasma, and OLED displays), whilst the LCD uses a backlight LCD panel where the entire panel is lit from behind. This results in the "black" region of the LCD actually glowing a dark grey when viewed in a darker room.

Beyond that, LED has a much much higher brightness level (nits baby!) that approximates the brightness (and contrast) of the original orange plasma DMD displays. The LCD... does not.

As has been noted, the LED does tend to reflect light off the unlit sections and the "apparent brightness" of certain colors (like blue) can sometimes be higher than the rest. An anti-glare film can be used to solve both issues if desired.

My own (excellent) personal taste at this point is to tend towards using LED as they best replicate the original DMD brightness and "feel", fit exactly in the original location, and overall make the game "pop" more than the LCD. At the end of the day, the LCD becomes "just another display", whereas the LED is something unique looking / interesting. ...oh, and the inability of the LED to apply the horrific "hi-res" mode to classic dots-animation is another benefit.

.

#715 1 year ago

This is now my second ColorDMD, both LED. The first in a TFTC and another in a BSD.

I first opted for LED in the TFTC because I didn't want to dremel the interior of my speaker panel for the LCD to fit, and didn't like how the top of the LCD screen could be seen as a black form in a bottom part of the translite. I'm so happy the way the LED looked and never considered changing.

Then had an opportunity to grab color for BSD, and once again I couldn't be happier with LED. Looks great and I don't have to lower my speaker panel every time I want to swing open my light panel to see the boards.

It's really personal preference, both are a luxury, both are awesome, and may always be a game to game decision. I seem to like MET in LCD, but sticking to the original technology of an LED screen just with a splash of color feels right. With all the odd fittings it seems weird to mount a laptop screen in a game. I'll probably feel different when I try LCD one day.

IMG_1517 (resized).jpg

#716 1 year ago

I picked up a Star Trek TNG that had a LED ColorDMD in it. I swapped it with the LCD that I had in my Twilight Zone and I cannot overstate how much better I think TNG is with “DotXL” compared with those little points of LED light.

I think Twilight Zone isn’t worse with LED than it was with LCD: I think that one is maybe a toss-up. [EDIT: no, it’s WAY better with LED. Those twinkling stars are stunning!]

Getaway I’ve only seen with LED and I think it is super duper that way.
ACF4918D-E2B4-4114-A4A3-EDE02217E5DF (resized).jpeg

Added 12 months ago:

Here's some GIFs and further reflection on LED vs LCD https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/spblat-s-game-room#post-5395947

6 months later
#718 6 months ago

Did anyone go through the LED vs LCD choice on the WPT? I only have one pin and it's the WPT (World Poker Tour). I have no side by side reference and if I pick one I won't be comparing one to the other...I'll just be good with what I have. I'm thinking the red cards deserve LED color/glare filter...but I'm not sure what you guys mean by the smoothing of the animations and how that affects WPT. I'm borderline videophile when it comes to TV's...I have several plasma TVs still in service due to the superior black levels but I'm not sure that applies here.

Any help on what I should select for the WPT is appreciated.

#719 6 months ago
Quoted from Codeman00:

Did anyone go through the LED vs LCD choice on the WPT? I only have one pin and it's the WPT (World Poker Tour). I have no side by side reference and if I pick one I won't be comparing one to the other...I'll just be good with what I have. I'm thinking the red cards deserve LED color/glare filter...but I'm not sure what you guys mean by the smoothing of the animations and how that affects WPT. I'm borderline videophile when it comes to TV's...I have several plasma TVs still in service due to the superior black levels but I'm not sure that applies here.
Any help on what I should select for the WPT is appreciated.

I still have three plasmas in use as well for the same reason, well that plus I can't justify the upgrade to an OLED until they get some of their image retention issues resolved. I recommend you go with the LED version, color reproduction is better and when they are off, they are off.

#720 6 months ago

I love my ColorDMD LED's, and with the PinballLife glare guard it looks amazing. It's a must have addition if you do go LED. Couldn't be happier with it.

#721 6 months ago
Quoted from davebart5:

I love my ColorDMD LED's, and with the PinballLife glare guard it looks amazing. It's a must have addition if you do go LED. Couldn't be happier with it.

+1 for glare guard on LEDs

#722 6 months ago

+1 LED

#723 6 months ago

+1 led looks better next to my lcd and no shadow effect in the backbox. Feels less like a mod and more like it belongs.

#724 6 months ago

It sounds like it's unanimous. Thanks all for your help. LED it will be.

#725 6 months ago
Quoted from davebart5:

I love my ColorDMD LED's, and with the PinballLife glare guard it looks amazing. It's a must have addition if you do go LED. Couldn't be happier with it.

Quoted from zene10:

+1 for glare guard on LEDs

Do I need to order the inner or outer mounting no glare film for the LED ColorDMD?

#726 6 months ago
Quoted from Codeman00:

It sounds like it's unanimous.

Yep, LCD or bust!

#727 6 months ago
Quoted from Codeman00:

It sounds like it's unanimous. Thanks all for your help. LED it will be.

Good choice! You will not be disappointed in the brightness and brilliance of colours on the LED. It adds a pop that the LCD just can't match.

#728 6 months ago
Quoted from Codeman00:

Do I need to order the inner or outer mounting no glare film for the LED ColorDMD?

your choice i did not and just bought some weather stripping from hardware store to fill the small gaps

#729 6 months ago
Quoted from Codeman00:

Do I need to order the inner or outer mounting no glare film for the LED ColorDMD?

The pictures in the product link below show the stripping that is probably already attached to your panel. The film sits on top of that stripping, and with the help of spacers, the DMD sits just slightly off the glare film. As others have stated if you see a gap, then fill in where necessary to your preference. But I don't recall seeing any on my BSD.

https://www.pinballlife.com/mm5/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Product_Code=PBL-100-0115-00

From there, increase the brightness of the DMD to shine through the film, and it looks great. I can barely see the dots anymore when the game is off and almost looks like an LCD screen is in there.

Feel free to DM me if you have any questions on install.

#730 6 months ago
Quoted from TheLaw:

Yep, LCD or bust!

Right. I've got one LED in my CV. I don't like the way it looks when on or off. I much prefer the LCDs in the rest of my machines, but hey, whatever works for this guy.

#731 6 months ago

Yeah, I've heard plenty of people that tried both and actually prefer the LCD in DOTSXL mode to the LED. I think it really is preference, and I've also heard that different games are better with one or the other. I don't think it's cut and dry that one is always better than the other.

#732 6 months ago
Quoted from DakotaMike:

I think it really is preference, and I've also heard that different games are better with one or the other. I don't think it's cut and dry that one is always better than the other.

ANY color is better than no color in my book, no matter what choice you make.

#733 6 months ago

Wow...just when I had a decision made and the LED in the cart. I only have one shot at this and have no idea if my title is better with LED or LCD. I'll never have a 2nd pin to compare so I won't know what I'm missing. I do love bright sharp colors. And really want the reds to shine since it's a playing card based pin. I think LED is the way to go just because of that.

#734 6 months ago

Just go with the LED Codeman. You'll be happy with it.

#735 6 months ago

One other thing Codeman, if you ever changed your mind in the future, you can easily sell whatever ColorDMD you buy at close to what you paid for it. There's always a demand for either version.

-1
#736 6 months ago
Quoted from Codeman00:

I only have one shot at this and have no idea if my title is better with LED or LCD.

Here's a tip, EVERY title is better with the LCD; more options. The LED is super duper bright...so yeah there's that.

#737 6 months ago

I can’t stand the mounting of the LCD or the fact it only uses a portion of the screen. Also when you look at led LCD on an angle in a line up it totally washes out to the point you cannot see it.

On the other hand the LED has a factory fresh finish and looks like it should be there and not like a mod

#738 6 months ago
Quoted from Codeman00:

Wow...just when I had a decision made and the LED in the cart. I only have one shot at this and have no idea if my title is better with LED or LCD. I'll never have a 2nd pin to compare so I won't know what I'm missing. I do love bright sharp colors. And really want the reds to shine since it's a playing card based pin. I think LED is the way to go just because of that.

Oh yeah, sounds like LED will be good for you. Plus, you really can't go wrong. No matter which you buy, you'll be getting a big improvement.

#739 6 months ago

I ordered the LED. I really won't know the difference in the LCD. I'll post pics when I get it installed. Thank you all for your help...much appreciated! I'm new at this and still learning.

#740 6 months ago
Quoted from DakotaMike:

...and I've also heard that different games are better with one or the other. I don't think it's cut and dry that one is always better than the other.

It's literally the most pointless topic to ask aboot. It's completely 50/50 betwixed owners and there is no correct answer for any reason.
The good part is it's a ColorDMD and the best mod ever made, so there isn;t a wrong answer anyway.

#741 6 months ago

Howdy!

I installed my LCD Color DMD in my Sopranos and I love it.

Figure Ill go LED next machine and see which I prefer, but I have a question and was hoping for some guidance if someone would be so kind?

I installed a trough light tied to the shoot again lamp, and man does it, and a bunch of other playfield lights, reflect off the plastic shield in front of the DMD.

I am reading through the thread and see mention of people using the comet DMD glare film to mitigate this, but I am wondering if I should be mounting it normally as I am not concerned about reflections off the playfield glass?

Is a different product needed, like a film that sticks to the outside of said clear plastic shield?

#742 6 months ago

I think its pretty simple Led for Bally Williams and Lcd for all modern Sterns.

#743 6 months ago

I have 10 LCD’s and 2 LED’s one is CV. LCD just looks better to me.

#744 6 months ago
Quoted from Lostcause:

I have 10 LCD’s and 2 LED’s one is CV. LCD just looks better to me.

I have 10 LEDs and zero LCDs after owning one.

Everyone defiantly has personal preference on this one. Cant go wrong either way

#745 6 months ago
Quoted from shovelhed:

I think its pretty simple Led for Bally Williams and Lcd for all modern Sterns.

Why is one brand better with LCD and the other brand better with LED?

#746 6 months ago

B/W didn't really have "digitized" graphics like latter sterns (movie clips, concert footage, etc. converted to dots). The various setting options the LCD offers can have a dramatic enhanced effect on those digitized graphics, making them into what I like to refer to as "medium definition".

#747 6 months ago
Quoted from Grandnational007:

B/W didn't really have "digitized" graphics like latter sterns (movie clips, concert footage, etc. converted to dots). The various setting options the LCD offers can have a dramatic enhanced effect on those digitized graphics, making them into what I like to refer to as "medium definition".

I find the complete opposite on the LCD. The only game that I felt those modes looked better was The Simpsons. Everything else is like playing an old video game on a modern TV, it just looks terrible, every flaw is on display, they look way better with the scan lines. I'm always surprised people use those modes, it just shows off how bad the image quality of the source actually is.

#748 6 months ago

What would people consider the MMR, AFMR, MBR DMD technology is? I assume LCD. It looks good.

#749 6 months ago
Quoted from KozMckPinball:

What would people consider the MMR, AFMR, MBR DMD technology is? I assume LCD. It looks good.

Yes, it's an LCD display mimicking dots.

#750 6 months ago
Quoted from bobukcat:

Yes, it's an LCD display mimicking dots.

Some people here obviously base their opinion of the LCD based solely on the high res mode as opposed to the dot modes that they have. To me the high res mode looks awful on most games, but the LCD with regular dots or dots xl looks amazing. The LCD is superior on every game when it comes to looks. LED has two things going for it, price and the fit and form being the same as the original DMD.

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