Jun. 30th, 2018

xiphmont: (Default)

I've previously regaled you with stories of poorly rebuilt SXGA+ screens being sold as new that are the bane of X62 builders. Whelp, I'm beginning to think just about every in-demand LCD panel on AliExpress stands a good chance of being a barely serviceable, cobbled together pile of poo. Usually sold as "NEW" or "GENUINE" or "100% ORIGINAL" of course.

I'm building some T70s now, and the screens folks like to have in these are the IAQX10 2k 4:3 AFFS screens from the old IDTech joint venture. Like the SXGA screens for the X62, these are long out of production, still in demand, and hard to find in the wild. I've been working out how to mod the much thicker industrial -M version, which uses the same matrix, to work in a T70.

While I'm working that out, an IAQX10N seller pops up on AliExpress. The screens are expensive, but a genuine laptop version of this screen should be expensive at this point. I decided to buy just one so I had a comparison for my rebuild efforts.

Screen arrived, and lo and behold, it's a cobbled together pile of poo.

Immediately upon opening the box: the screen has a gloss front polarizer film. Uh oh. Stock is matte. Looking closer, it isn't even cut straight. Like, guys, at least use a straightedge.

Well, let's see if it at least works... and find it has a blank EDID. Uh huh. OK, let's get an IAQX10N EDID into it...

and we get:

The background on that screen? It's not supposed to be blue. It's supposed to be black. No, I didn't mess with the photo. 'Black' really looks like that. It's measuring less than 100:1 contrast; that blue is backlight bleed-through.

And the diagonal stripes? Not a trick of the picture. They're really there. It's Moiré patterning from using the wrong prism films for the given DPI, or not tacking them in-place and having them shift in transport.

This may well be the worst refurb job I've seen to date without being bent or cracked. Actually, I take it back, the outer frame is also slightly bent.

But hey! I'm only out $100 in shipping once I return it!

(In case you were wondering, the protective plastic film is still on the front of the screen in that picture, so all the bubbles and scratches are not real defects. But it does mean they did a lousy job putting the film on.)

xiphmont: (Default)

There's some good LCD news though-- I found a seller who's trickling out small numbers of refurbished HV121P01-100 screens, and unlike all the others I've sampled in the past several years, these have so far been excellent. Yes, they're rebuilt, but they appear to use entirely genuine, model-appropriate parts. I have no idea if these are parts from B-grade panels being reassembled into new screens or what, but the results are NOS visual quality.

There's a 'downside': he actually seals the panels together with black RTV silicone. If you want to open the panel up to do further surgery, you can't. Or rather, with a thin spudger, a ton of patience and very very steady hands you can, but slip once and you'll crack the matrix. I did open some up to have a detailed look--- Yup! All genuine inside!

If you *don't* have any reason to open the screen up, the black silicone is a good idea-- it keeps grit out, and prevents the dreaded 'white spots' from ever developing. I've considered building screens this way myself, so I actually approve.

I'm importing a few of these for conversion to LED. If you want one, contact me about it. If you want to order directly yourself, it's item #710816705 on AliExpress. I have no idea how many per month he can actually make, or if the quality is going to hold up, but so far, so good!


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