(Topic ID: 230711)

Poll: Keep my STTNG on incandescents, or full Herg controlled LED?


By holminone

4 months ago



Topic Stats

  • 17 posts
  • 12 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 4 months ago by holminone
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Topic poll

“Do I keep the warm old school glow of incandescents, or go all in on Herg controlled LED system?”

  • Keep the wonderful old school glow of incandescents! 10 votes
    21%
  • Take the plunge on the Herg controlled LEDs! 14 votes
    30%
  • No question, Herg controlled LEDs- no brainer. 20 votes
    43%
  • No question, keep the game pure with incandescents- no brainer. 3 votes
    6%

(47 votes)

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PB191737 (resized).JPG

#1 4 months ago

So.... I've owned my STTNG for what I think is about 10 years now and for all its time its been in my garage (it was a well insulated and finished garage). Its unmodified save for Blue LED flashers in the Borg ship and an externally powered subwoofer (a cheap polk audio but fantastic for the purpose and I highly recommend an external sub on this game provided the sub has volume and crossover controls). My son, who is now an 18 year old in college is the grand champion at 24 Billion. I'm just behind on the continuum at 23+.

After our recent re-model, I've executed the vision to get this thing into my new office that was added as part of an addition. The pinball looks fantastic and super retro with the incandescents. But after reviewing the technical approach to pulse modulation boards created by Herg I'm enamored with the idea of adding LEDs to boost the game lighting and enhance the experience for myself, my family, and my guests who may not have played a pinball machine in 20 years. I had a NGG with LEDs and while great, without the Herb boards it was visually noisy and plagued with annoying strobe.

I LOVE to play the STTNG in the dark, but of course I don't play particularly well because I can't track the balls and shots perfectly. I don't expect that to change a whole lot with the upgrade, but I do expect a clean and more impactful visual experience.

What say you all? Should I buy both boards (the Matrix and the GI), then go all in on the basic (non ghosting) LEDs and take the plunge? Or do I keep the incandescents? I'm also thinking about adding a shaker motor tied to the shield flashers.

Or do I keep the old school warm glow of the incandescents?

Note, my game is far from home use only. The coin slots say "insert tokens" so its previous life was in an arcade. My neutral zone hole is a hack job of a repair to square the edges, but everything plays flawlessly!

PB191737 (resized).JPG
#2 4 months ago

STTNG on Bright White LEDs with colormatching insert LEDs with OCD LCD & GI is a beautiful sight to behold!!!

#3 4 months ago

One of the best Games to benefit from LEDs and Hergs Work.....Hands Down....Add Op-max in the Back and dark areas of GI.

#4 4 months ago

That's a great suggestion. I was thinking something similar- lamp behind the neutral zone is not doing the game any justice. Any other areas you would recommend Op-max bulbs? Also, if I pull the trigger, what color version, sunlight white or natural white?

Also would be curious to see the comments on the folks who say keep the incandescents!

#5 4 months ago

Anywhere in GI that doesnt hit your eyes...Usually B/W have only a couple GI Spots in the Back, and its nice to get that to balance light more evenly. I think its either 6 or 8 of them, and balance with Twin 2835....Fun to play around, other than the Ramps!!!
White or Sunlight.....STTNG looks best in either....(I prefer Sunlight with older eyes.....Younger eyes have no issue with Natural White....)
Of course, there is also Pinstadium, if you tend to play in the dark.....

#6 4 months ago

Another thought is a pinsound board. Also great enhancement on this game

#7 4 months ago

Incadescent is best, if you can find quality bulbs.
Incadescent is pleasing, calm and nostalgic. LED is harsh, in your face, street violent, brain wave confusing, incentive to flight inducive seeking safe spaces take another toke another swig and study on it lighting.
You are welcome, use incandescent bulbs while they are still available.

#8 4 months ago
Quoted from phil-lee:

Incadescent is best, if you can find quality bulbs.
Incadescent is pleasing, calm and nostalgic. LED is harsh, in your face, street violent, brain wave confusing, incentive to flight inducive seeking safe spaces take another toke another swig and study on it lighting.
You are welcome, use incandescent bulbs while they are still available.

Wow... we are tied in the poll at 5 apiece. Strong conviction by both sides... By chance what do you think of Eiko incandescent bulbs?

#9 4 months ago
Quoted from phil-lee:

Incadescent is best, if you can find quality bulbs.
Incadescent is pleasing, calm and nostalgic. LED is harsh, in your face, street violent, brain wave confusing, incentive to flight inducive seeking safe spaces take another toke another swig and study on it lighting.
You are welcome, use incandescent bulbs while they are still available.

I did use clear colored incandescent in my tftc as another option for more of that "calm"

#10 4 months ago

From someone that used to be a "purist" when it came to lighting. I am now changing all my games to LEDS. I fell in love with the Comet sunlight leds. They are in between warm and cool. Also now using the 2-SMD over the single. It spreads the light better.
Just stay away from colored GI's and use frosted bulbs. Color match the inserts and don't led the flashers. Way to f-ing bright.

#11 4 months ago
Quoted from holminone:

Wow... we are tied in the poll at 5 apiece. Strong conviction by both sides... By chance what do you think of Eiko incandescent bulbs?

So far just fine. Of course I would prefer 70's OEM bulbs in original packaging ( project I'm working on had a crisp ctn of GE tucked away).
I really like the Eiko 455

#12 4 months ago

I have grown to appreciate incandescent bulbs. They give a warm subtle feel that cannot be matched. I have enough bright LED games that I now leave older original games alone. I used to bling everything out, now I appreciate originality. If I were you I would leave STTNG alone. The only negative leaving your incandescent bulbs in STTNG is if you leave on for a length of time they get too hot and can damage inserts(mainly shields).

#13 4 months ago

Nothing more bigger pain in the ass, than to change a blown bulb under the subway ramp!
LED all the way.

#14 4 months ago

I went full LED without any aid. Non-ghosting insert LEDs are the best.

#15 4 months ago

Mine was OG incandescent for a long time but after having the GI connector burn up one time I decided to go full-on LED and GI OCD boards. At the time I used Comet's Retro LEDs for GI because I wanted to keep it more original looking but I'd probably use Sunlight Frosted now. There are some inserts that are troublesome to light well with LEDs, the Jackpot being one of them so you might want to buy some flex headed bulbs too to address those. The other area of this game that is really hard to light well is around the slings because of their shape and the fact the one GI socket under each is laying flat to the PF. I don't know if lighted star posts or some other solution would be best, when playing in the dark this is the biggest problem with this game IMO. I do put Pin Stadiums on mine when I've taken it to shows and just every now and then, if you really want to play in the dark I don't think you can beat that setup but I'll admit that both OCD boards + LEDs + PinStadium = $$$$.

#16 4 months ago

LED's, when done TASTEFULLY, can really enhance a STTNG. Go for it!

1 week later
#17 4 months ago

So.... for anyone interested... here is what I am have decided for now.

I gave the game a long overdue service and cleaning and ordered PDI glass. Replaced the Delta ramp, all rubbers, fixed a couple of broken plastics, and gave a thorough cleaning to all plastics, play field, obscured areas of the play field, and the subway. In addition to adding PDI glass I replaced or cleaned dirty incandescents and the undersides of many inserts (novus 1).... Between new bulbs disbursed throughout, and having the incandescent reflect off the natural wood color has made a huge difference. LOTS of elbow grease.

The results have been pretty astonishing as the game was pretty filthy. PDI glass is perfect. I broke 5 billion playing in the complete dark- that was unheard of before the work as I couldn't track the balls with any consistent precision.

I haven't totally given up on the LED thing, but after having played an LED STTNG at a local place, the game didn't feel right to me. Granted, the LED colors were goofy and in poor taste, and certainly no HERG board. Other goofy mods were chroming throughout including the phaser handle.

I have to say, the best mods you can make to your STTNG are: 1) backbox speaker upgrade and external powered subwoofer (with crossover and volume controls), 2) PDI glass. 4) blue LED borg flashers and blue borg GI and green romulan flasher. Also have to make sure the slope of the game is near the maximum. I have read so many comments recently that this game feels "floaty" for many... my STTNG by contrast feels ultra fast and packed with power. The subwoofer and speaker upgrade makes for an amazing experience- I never tire of Borg Multiball on my machine.

I may yet add a shaker tied to the shield flashers to enhance the borg multi ball experience.

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