(Topic ID: 72365)

SmartDmd : DMD interface with colors, upscaling, network and more !

By oga83

7 years ago

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  • 613 posts
  • 123 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 66 days ago by Cadrion
  • Topic is favorited by 153 Pinsiders


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#208 6 years ago
Quoted from hank527:

I wish someone would put together a nice kit and sell them

This is in the works

2 weeks later
#224 6 years ago

Here are some pics of ACDC for those that are interested:

Screenshot (56).png Screenshot (57).png Screenshot (58).png Screenshot (59).png Screenshot (60).png Screenshot (61).png
1 month later
#241 6 years ago
Quoted from kapsreiter:

"Side-channel" i looking great
i see no difference to the old way, only that now the picture looks perfect, without the 8 dots
great job olivier

The "upscaling" wasn't featured in the ACDC Promo video as it was still being tweaked. It looks much better in person, wait until you see MET

I've tweaked a few colors for ACDC, so there are some minor changes in a handful of the animations.

As always, great work Oga.

#252 6 years ago

Here's a better example of what the upscaling looks like:

#256 6 years ago
Quoted from toyotaboy:

According to the creator, Pinball browser cannot modify Whitestar firmware, which means a global pallette

This is correct, for now anyway

#261 6 years ago
Quoted from Aurich:

That top image looks like a muppet.

Muppet mode is an additional feature we're working on

Here's what the actual image looks like:

16x Upscaling

Screenshot (514).png

2x Upscaling
Screenshot (515).png

Standard Dots (My personal favorite for this particular game)
Screenshot (516).png

Here's a grid look for fun
Screenshot (517).png

1 month later
#284 6 years ago

FYI - for people that are interested, I've started an additional thread to discuss SmartDMD and how it works. As promised, I'll provide detailed tutorials on how PB and SmartDMD can be used to colorize Stern SAM machines. I'll also cover how to build a SDMD kit for those that want to build their own. I'll coordinate with Oga to ensure I present information correctly and keep track of new features as they are implemented. Here's the link:


I know we have several SmartDMD threads already, but I hope to provide a step-by-step users guide that will unveil the mystery behind how the software works and give people the tools they need to start colorizing their own games.

1 week later
#286 6 years ago
Quoted from agodfrey:

What are the advantages/disadvantages of using the SmartDMD board over the DMD extender? If it has already been covered can you point me in the right direction. SmartDMD/DMD extender is the way I want to go, just seeing which is best.

DMD Extender is a great product, so you can't go wrong either way. What game are you looking to install a kit in?

My advise is that you checkout the DMD Extender thread Crash created and see which one you like best.

1 month later
#291 6 years ago

Here are some more MET pics:

Standard Dots:
Enter Sandman 2.png

16x Upscaling:
Enter Sandman 1.png

My favorite free color file is getting better everyday

1 week later
#303 6 years ago

I'll test the Side Channel setup on MET this weekend and report back.

Until then........


#305 6 years ago
Quoted from Rensh:

Installed a Smartdmd in a batman BdK on just a single pallet
Wanna see how that looks?
» YouTube video

The best part is that it only takes 2 minutes to do a single color palette SDMD

No flashing required. So, you can have a "sigma" unscaled display with whatever 16 color shades you want and customize it in a matter of minutes.

#307 6 years ago

Here's a look at the adapter panel I'm prototyping for the newer Stern machines:


These will be cut on a CNC and come with a new acrylic glare guard.

Testing the new side channel mode:

SIde Channel.jpg

1 week later
#310 6 years ago

Serial side channel is up and running!

No more sprite frame limitations

MET and ACDC just got a whole lot better, with a little TLC of course.

Now SmartDMD can support up to 255 unique color palettes for any frame used in the game's ROM

3 weeks later
#313 6 years ago

Coming Soon

spiderman apron.JPG

Still have some more work to do, but it's progressing nicely

#315 6 years ago
Quoted from kapsreiter:

and why we need a apron for smartdmd ?!?

Options are nice right?

Besides, I'm working on something else for my SM back box

#318 6 years ago

Finished the apron design:

Spiderman SmartDMD.png

Now it's time to start working on the LCD hardware and electronics layout. Here's our first stab:

SmartDMD System .png

#320 6 years ago

Here's a look at what 255 color palettes enables:

Blackened Super Jackpot.png

MET now has 60+ palettes (and counting). Thank you Oga

#322 6 years ago
Quoted from Rensh:

Wow, nice work

Hi Rensh,

I've figured out how to get all of the scores to display in a fixed user adjustable color using a designated "Score" Palette

Any ideas for tweaking the 0,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8 and 9, adding slime or something along those lines? I could color the numbers similar to the Metallica Ramp Letters?

2 weeks later
#325 6 years ago

Note to all SmartDMD users - MET 1.64 is now available. Currently, Metallica is using more than 100 color palettes with over 400 unique colors. There's still more work to do, but 90% of the game is now fully colorized. Here are some sample dots:

Extra Ball.png
Grave Marker MB.png
Sparky Multiball.png


#326 6 years ago

More MET 1.64 dots:

Guitar Picks.png
Blackened Riders.png
Blackened Super Jackpot.png
Hurry Up.png
Seek & Destroy 1.png
Ball Drain.png

#327 6 years ago

A few more for good measure

Score Digits.png
Enter Sandman.png
For Whom the Bell Tolls.png

#330 6 years ago
Quoted from sirlonzelot:

The ssc Metallica is Killer. Mike did a Great Job !

Thanks. I'm tweaking all of the Sparky JP animations next. Then I'll be down to just reworking the Snake stuff, Special, and End of the Line animations.

Then I'll go back and rework ACDC from scratch, Ugh.......

Oh, and I told Rensh I'd do a Green Sparky text file for his MET

2 weeks later
#354 6 years ago

Here's a first look at the actual Spiderman SDMD apron kit prototype

Spiderman apron.png

It needs a few tweaks, but not too bad for a first attempt. The final product will be powder coated and fitted with a 5" LCD screen. Here's a better shot to show the cutting detail:

Spider cutout.png

#360 6 years ago

Have you colorized the actual score sprite frames? Are you using side channel or in-frame?

#367 6 years ago
Quoted from marcocapetown:

problem i have is i cant select a palette for the ; i get an error, "the frame is too small to hold smartdmd palette information"
on the lettering i did not select a palette, its selected as none and there are just green colors i used to make it look more like shrek colors, so its shades of green.
picture of how i did it.


Your score digit coloring will not work. The only reason I could do this on MET is because I'm using the serial side channel method to apply a "score" palette to every "number" frame. You can't assign palettes to sprite frames (any non 128x32 sized frame) unless you're using side channel. Color all your numbers using #15 in your palette. If you want all of the text to appear green then you need to assign the color green to #15 in every palette. This is one of the limitations of "in-frame."

1 week later
#369 6 years ago

Quick MET update:

Everything is done with the exception of "The End of the Line" animations. Here are some teaser pics of the newest animations:

Snake MB.png
Fade to Black.png

#373 6 years ago

Getting ready to flash the game and test everything. I also addressed the 2 or 3 bugs I saw in your video.

#375 6 years ago
Quoted from sirlonzelot:

My game is ready for flashing

Email me and this afternoon and I'll get you the latest macro

2 weeks later
#380 6 years ago

That looks great, well done.

3 weeks later
#391 6 years ago
Quoted from Gandalf37j:

I posted this at the Pinball Browser Thread already, but I think this might be the better place...
I'm wondering if someone ever try to colorize a TRON with pinball browser (beside the video snippets)
if yes, appreciate your hints as I'm able to colorize on a "global" color palette level only...
may be I'm missing something or it's not possible, because of the video snippets in between.
best regards

If my memory is correct, Tron is one of the split screen games like TF and IM. That means the DMD images aren't 128x32 in size. Unless you are using the serial side channel feature (as outline earlier in this thread) you can't assign palettes to "non-fullsized" frames. That is why you can assign a default palette to the game, but you're unable to assign palettes to individual frames that aren't 128x32.

Clear as mud?

#393 6 years ago

No need to apologize. I hope you get it working

#399 6 years ago
Quoted from Crash:

Question, does SmartDMD support the basic color palette feature of DMD Extender? As in the ability to assign all 4 brightness levels (from black to bright orange) to a color without manually colorizing any frames?

Yes, just use the default palette and assign the colors you want.

7 months later
#511 5 years ago

That looks pretty damn good to me. The great thing about smartdmd is that anyone can customize the colors to their own preference. Personally, I like the desert the way it is.

#524 5 years ago

You should have plenty of memory to complete MET, but don't forget the intro animation for EOL

Also, I'm not sure all of the desert frames are even used. It will be nice to see MET 100%.

#526 5 years ago
Quoted from j_m_:

I was thinking that the "hammer falling" animation at the end of the image file should probably remain gray-scale since the actual hammer isn't colored. that helps out a bit too

Think of all the memory you'll save if you just keep everything original

#530 5 years ago

Nice, but what's it look like with lighted....... oh, never mind

#537 5 years ago

FYI - I'm working with another PinSider to possibly re-boot these kits, nothing is concrete just yet.

#540 5 years ago
Quoted from Fytr:

What's the lighted mod??

It's just an inside joke between two nerds

3 weeks later
#547 5 years ago

Well done JM.

It's nice to see MET complete

#561 5 years ago
Quoted from j_m_:

while finishing up 'the end of the line', it got me thinking, why hasn't stern taken the approach and customized their logo (the one that scrolls during attract mode on their machines) and alter it to fit the theme of the machine like movie companies have done with the WB logo at the start of films
this is what I think that metallic's should have looked like:

for those of you running smartdmd, pm me if you're interested in the macro for this

So when are you going to rework ACDC

#563 5 years ago

Oh that hurts JM. After all we've been through.......

#569 5 years ago

Nice. Now that's cool. Well played sir.

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