(Topic ID: 289067)

TAF lamp matrix problems that are driving this newbie crazy

By Timberhusk

7 months ago


Topic Heartbeat

Topic Stats

  • 22 posts
  • 9 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 5 months ago by Timberhusk
  • Topic is favorited by 1 Pinsider

You

Linked Games

#1 7 months ago

This pin is driving me crazy. Day after day I'm getting a little closer to playing a good clean game but now I'm stuck on lamp matrix issues. I hope someone can dumb down a solution for me. I went into test mode for the single lamps. Every "single" lamp I tested turns on 2 or 3 lamps in the same row but different columns. Example: column 1- row 1 "Thing Multiball" flashes but so does "Upper Left Jet" in column 2- row 1. So each lamp test will turn on another lamp to the left or right column or both, and always in the same row. Every single lamp turns something else on in the same row but different columns. Something this big isn't just a short somewhere, right??

#2 7 months ago

Yep. I had the same problem too. It was a short where one of my lights was shorting on another. If I remember correctly it was my cliffy was making a connection somewhere.

#3 7 months ago

Most likely a lamp short. This happens a lot when people change bulbs and bend the bulb housing. Many times it’s the 44/47 bulbs.

#4 7 months ago

Its amazing how just one shorted diode can make a small issue seem so huge. Maybe disconnect your mansion light board and see if it still happens, if not there might be a diode shorts on that board. Other than that maybe check your pop light diodes for a short. Without knowing more about the machine history or current state its difficult - Did this machine just start doing this after running correctly, or was it a project you stripped down?
One thing to realise is all the lights for the pops are controlled in the matrix, so its critical every pop light has its own diode. I found this out after scratch building a TAF, drove me nuts for ages until I realised this.

#5 7 months ago

Did you just upgrade to LEDs? If so, sounds like you are not using non-ghosting LEDs.

#6 7 months ago
Quoted from Flex_in_Aus:

Its amazing how just one shorted diode can make a small issue seem so huge. Maybe disconnect your mansion light board and see if it still happens, if not there might be a diode shorts on that board. Other than that maybe check your pop light diodes for a short. Without knowing more about the machine history or current state its difficult - Did this machine just start doing this after running correctly, or was it a project you stripped down?
One thing to realise is all the lights for the pops are controlled in the matrix, so its critical every pop light has its own diode. I found this out after scratch building a TAF, drove me nuts for ages until I realised this.

He is right. Check the diodes, that could be the issue too. Did you replace any lamps?

#7 7 months ago
Quoted from crashnt20:

He is right. Check the diodes, that could be the issue too. Did you replace any lamps?

Is it ghosting? Are all three or so lights the same brightness? If not the same brightness it is ghosting. If ghosting get non ghosting leds. That game is known for it. Next a diode. Test each diodes with a meter. The next thing and most likely it is the power driver board is bad. Had the same thing on a attack from Mars last night. You could test that board in another machine. If it does strange things in the other game that is your issue. Good luck.

#8 7 months ago

Another possibility is that there are 2 lamp boards toward the middle of the underside of the playfield that has the lamp board wiring swapped between the lamp boards. The 2 lamp boards have the same number of pins and the key in the exact same spot in the lamp board connectors.

I think these are the larger lamp boards. Been over 3 years ago when I ran into this one on a friend's game.

#9 7 months ago

Thanks for all the leads. Pulled the connector off the mansion and still had the problem. I've looked for a short but haven't seen anything obvious. Checked the two lamp boards in the middle and they have correct connections. I thought I was onto something with the pop bumpers flat straps for the bulbs, I thought maybe another lamp socket was on it so i moved it over and still found the problem. I checked the diodes on the straps and they are all good. The machine had some LED's and I moved a few around and replaced some incorrect ones. So, yes it has some older and newer LED's. I'm not familiar with "ghosting", what is that and how could that be causing all this??

#10 7 months ago
Quoted from Timberhusk:

the two lamp boards in the middle and they have correct connections.

If you find 2 lamp boards with the same key pin and correct number of pins, physically swap the connectors between the 2 lamp boards.

I know this is a problem, I am not exactly sure which were the 2 lamp boards with the same physical molex connections. Too hard to remember 4+ years ago.

#11 7 months ago

There doesn't seem to be two lamp boards with the same or matching connection. I pulled the connections off all lamp boards and still have the same problem. This CPU and Power Driver board are new so while it's possible they could be faulty, it just not probable.

With the connections pulled from the lamp boards that would just leave the individual lamps, so i guess that narrows it down a little. I wish i could test something from the connections at the power driver board. Are there certain connections that I could test continuity or something??

#12 7 months ago

I have disconnected all light boards and still have problem. I have gone through and tested the remaining 19 lights with diodes plus the 5 pop bumpers diodes. Is my count correct?

#13 7 months ago

Back to the LED ghosting statement earlier. Can anyone explain what that is and how that could be creating this problem? Should I buy a bunch of old school bulbs and replace all the LED's? Is a mix of LED's and old style ok?

#14 7 months ago

From here: https://pinwiki.com/wiki/index.php?title=General#The_Lamp_Matrix

-----

"Ghost" lamps lighting simultaneous with other lamp lighting - "Ghost" lamp illuminations such as a lamp in column 1 lighting at the same time as a lamp in column 2 on the same row, are almost always due to a shorted lamp matrix transistor providing power (or ground) continuously, and allowing adjacent matrix row or column lamps to light.

Note that ghosting here does not refer to LED replacement lamps, which sometime light when they shouldn't in lamp matrix use that was not designed with LEDs in mind.

-----

You can buy 'non-ghosting' LEDs that work to some degree but never perfectly in my experience. Old school lamps are best if you really want to make 100% sure you have no electronic fault - use 47's rather than 44's as the 47's draw less power and are easier on the power supply and connectors in the machine. Available from any parts supplier.

Also, my $0.02 - ALWAYS go to PinWiki FIRST with any issue because the chances are very strong that you will find an answer to your problem there and, worst case, will learn something new anyway.

#15 7 months ago
Quoted from Timberhusk:

Back to the LED ghosting statement earlier. Can anyone explain what that is and how that could be creating this problem? Should I buy a bunch of old school bulbs and replace all the LED's? Is a mix of LED's and old style ok?

As you replace the LEDs with regular incandescent bulbs, the problem will lessen. If you have all incandescent bulbs installed and it is still doing it, then you would likely have a power driver board issue.

#16 7 months ago

. Multiple inserts all lighting up with same intensity? Or just one that is bright, and the others are dim? If there all "bright" than we can rule out the ghosting problem..... usually with ghosting, the others will flicker or be dim, but not bright (with LEDS)

I maybe missing something, did this problem exist prior with incandescent? Or dont know? This thread was focused on Ghosting....but it sure doesn't sound like it.

Again, if several are full brightness, I'm going towards a short or board issue. I have not seen LEDs in this game (even ghosting cheap ones), all come on with same brightness.....

Quoted from Timberhusk:

This CPU and Power Driver board are new so while it's possible they could be faulty, it just not probable.

Would these happen to be Rotten Dogs? There is an old post where someone had gotten a faulty RD board that was illuminating multiple lights in the switch matrix. It's not unheard of.

The post: https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/taf-lamp-matrix-issue-too-many-inserts-on-at-once#post-3227289

#17 7 months ago

Are there any mods hooked up to a lamp? I had a similar issue and it was an uncle fester mod that was wired and soldered to a lamp. Once I removed that wiring and cleaned up that area it was all good. If you have any extra light mods remove them and see if that solves it.

https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/addams-family-insert-lights-lamp-matrix-issue-help-please

#18 7 months ago
Quoted from BrianZ:

. Multiple inserts all lighting up with same intensity? Or just one that is bright, and the others are dim? If there all "bright" than we can rule out the ghosting problem..... usually with ghosting, the others will flicker or be dim, but not bright (with LEDS)
I maybe missing something, did this problem exist prior with incandescent? Or dont know? This thread was focused on Ghosting....but it sure doesn't sound like it.
Again, if several are full brightness, I'm going towards a short or board issue. I have not seen LEDs in this game (even ghosting cheap ones), all come on with same brightness.....

Would these happen to be Rotten Dogs? There is an old post where someone had gotten a faulty RD board that was illuminating multiple lights in the switch matrix. It's not unheard of.
The post: https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/taf-lamp-matrix-issue-too-many-inserts-on-at-once#post-3227289

That is my first question. Why were the boards replaced? Was it a lighting issue? If the previous board was dead. You could have replaced without fixing the problem. If so you could have just fried the new boards. The rotten dogs aren’t fused the same way. That is why I suggested testing in another game. If the RD that could be the problem as please check the above thread. If a short you can to resistance test all the way through.

#19 7 months ago

After swapping new and old boards light problem seems to have cleared it's self with the old board. The Rottendog board still displays the lamp problem. I don't know who, how, why or what but the lamp issue is no longer an issue. Thanks everyone for your suggestions!

#20 7 months ago

Update. Now i have a problem with the bookcase running non-stop and Thing hand not working. I'll work on it a bit and post a new message under a different title if needed.

#21 7 months ago

Just keep posting here, and we will work through it. So the old board, may have had issues; hence the swap. Assuming we have some shorted/bad transistors on the main board.

1 month later
#22 5 months ago

Finally, all problems solved. Not sure how the problem with the bookcase and Thing were tied together but the machine certainly didn't follow the schematics in the book. Long story short, re routed some wiring, replaced a couple connectors and I'm back playing again! Thanks for everyone's help!

Hey there! Got a moment?

Great to see you're enjoying Pinside! Did you know Pinside is able to run thanks to donations from our visitors? Please donate to Pinside, support the site and get anext to your username to show for it! Donate to Pinside