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Author Topic: Starting a portable 6x8 Intuos 3 build (information gathering stage)  (Read 27828 times)
jpanichella
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« on: October 14, 2010, 05:49:42 PM »

Hey guys,

First a quick introduction. My name is Jon and I'm an industrial design student at the University of Cincinnati. I recently started an internship that gave me full access to a large Wacom Cintiq and I'm absolutely hooked. I have an Intuos3 6x8 (A5) tablet I never got comfortable using due to the disconnect between the tablet and the screen, but after finding your website and doing some thinking, I'm ready to get this project off the ground.

Firstly, I need to figure out what screen I'm going to get. I noticed that tabletmod.com has a 10.6" driver for Intuos 4 mediums, but I believe those tablets are a different size than what I have. I don't have the tablet right in front of me, but the dimensions from the wiki are 203.2mm x 152.4mm. So, which screen/driver would be a good launching point for this project?

I was planning on making this thing as small as possible WITHOUT decasing the wacom tablet I have. I have a crazy idea to use a cookie sheet and cover it with a piece of plexiglass. Something kind of like this.

http://www.walmart.com/ip/Fox-Run-Craftsmen-Jelly-Roll-Pan/15007828?findingMethod=rr

It's fairly shallow and if I placed the boards to the side of the tablet I could get away with a thinner overall profile.

But the first step would be to get the right parts together so I can have some concrete dimensions to work from when I start worrying about the case.

I appreciate all the help guys
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bernard
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« Reply #1 on: October 14, 2010, 06:44:37 PM »

Welcome Jon!  Smiley

You first have to find a matching screen.  Matching in the sense that it has to be the same size (or smaller) -- you do not want to have a piece of the screen without an active area in the back to cover that area (or you won't be able to access it) -- it might become very frustating.  Your tablet is 6x8 inches, 4:3 ratio (not wide) so what is the diagonal size? (do the math Smiley ).  You can also do the math with the precise active area (it often matches pretty well the inches).

Either you find a monitor or a LCD Panel component alone (like for laptops).  For the drivers, there are many choices, but you have to get the LCD Panel first to get its brand and model number (if it is a monitor, you have to open the monitor and find the LCD Panel *inside*. They you find the proper LVDS driver: http://wiki.bongofish.co.uk/doku.php?id=bongofish:lvdsvendors

You have to decide on how much money you are willing to throw at this. Going with TabletMod might get you there easily if they have what you need (compared to hunting for your own LCD Panel on ebay or whatever site).

You have to know that there is always a risk to "break" the LCD. So I wouldn't put too too much money in it for that reason (but this is a personal opinion) Is this going to be your second monitor? if yes, you can probably live with a lower resolution (1024x768) -- but doing industrial design often means doing 3D CAD stuff and resolution pays off (you know what I mean). If it is for pure art 2D drawing, lower resolution is generally fine.

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jpanichella
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« Reply #2 on: October 14, 2010, 10:53:26 PM »

So I double checked my tablet and the pen area measures approximately 8.25 wide by 6.375 tall, which is a diagonal of approximately 10.4 inches.

So, I went straight to ebay to look.

http://cgi.ebay.com/HT10X21-311-HP-TC1100-10-4-XGA-LCD-SCREEN-/150442507867?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item2307127e5b#ht_2314wt_905

Seems like a good price for a screen with a guarantee of no dead pixels. Are my assumptions correct? I agree, it's not worth getting an expensive LCD for this project. I am mostly going to use it for sketching, for 3D modeling I'll use my regular laptop screen. So consider this a secondary monitor.

Thanks for the link to the drivers! I'll send some emails to see what they can do with that small of a display. If anybody knows of a driver that works inherently with this screen/resolution, let me know.

Edit:

On average, how big are those driver boards? I think I might have found a good candidate for the chassis.
« Last Edit: October 15, 2010, 01:08:53 AM by jpanichella » Logged
bernard
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« Reply #3 on: October 15, 2010, 04:16:12 AM »

We should not make "approximate" calculations. 

I checked your tablet and your intuos 3 A5 has -- officially at least -- a 6.0 x 8.0 active area (this is according to its manual) -- not a millimeter more -- that yields a sqrt(6*6+8*Cool = 10.0 inches diagonal.

If you get a bigger screen you will have unreachable areas (not fun).

How did you get those measurements? Is it by moving the pen to the edge to see up to where it was actually active?

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jpanichella
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« Reply #4 on: October 15, 2010, 12:29:40 PM »

I measured pad area itself, I didn't plug in to find the edges, but now I know I should.
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jpanichella
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« Reply #5 on: October 17, 2010, 04:09:19 PM »

You're right, I plugged it in, and the edges of the screen are not quite to the edge of the physical pad. I did notice that I could take the pen near .25" off the pad, and although the cursor extends beyond the top of the screen, I could move the pen left or right and the cursor would follow on the screen. Is that a software or hardware thing?

So I assume I need exactly a 10 inch XGA screen. Searching ebay only gives me 10.1" screens. The ones for the hp tc1100 don't work well with the controllers NYJTouch sell. Do 10.0" xga screens exist? Google didn't help very much. It seems like 10.4 inch screens are much easier to find.

I appreciate all the help, I'm sorry for the excessive questions.
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bernard
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« Reply #6 on: October 18, 2010, 02:39:21 AM »

If you see that your pad seems "bigger" than the screen it is somewhat "normal" -- typically you can configure your tablet to fit your screen more precisely.  You will want the biggest active area that you can get (gives more choices over the LCD Panels).

We had thought of a trick in other posts to "extend" the reach of the pen near the edges (known as the "2:1 mapping") -- but that was doable only with intuos 1 and intuos 2 version of the drivers. (i.e. mapping the last cm of the edges of the tablet to 2 cm on the screen -- that would allow you to reach all the screen even if the pad is not exactly big enough).  But we have found no way to perform such a "remapping" of the coordinates with more recent intuos or non-intuos models.  (this was done with the "Advanced Mapping" option which allowed you to map multiple areas on the *same* monitor.)
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jpanichella
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« Reply #7 on: October 18, 2010, 03:30:47 AM »

I figure I'll go with a 10.4" panel. I calculated that at worst there will be around an eighth of an inch border, I can't seem to find any 10.1" screens that are easy to find and supported by the affordable drivers available.

I found an example of what I'm trying to do (I've been searching the forums exhaustively but it seems that few people have completed one this exact size).

http://forum.bongofish.co.uk/index.php?topic=1586.0

He uses a 10.4 inch LCD, but based upon the pictures of his build, I can't really tell if he quite knew the most proper way to go about building one of these things. I've been in consistent communication with NYJTouch, hopefully we'll find a panel that works flawlessly with their driver.
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jpanichella
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« Reply #8 on: October 20, 2010, 05:43:47 PM »

A quick update. After trying to find a panel for the past week or so, NYJTouch told me that they could source a panel locally and make sure it works with their controller, and I could buy the panel and the driver from them as a bundle. We'll see how it goes.

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bernard
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« Reply #9 on: October 20, 2010, 06:22:19 PM »

How nice of them!

Tell us how much it is when you have the info  Grin
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Angrysunshine
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« Reply #10 on: October 20, 2010, 11:28:28 PM »

I have actually found some LCD panels on e-bay, searching for: 10 screen  (got a few, but much less: 10 LCD panel)

It was pretty hard to track down information on any model of screen that I found. I think some had LED lighting. I'm pretty sure they all had a resolution of 800 x 600...
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jpanichella
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« Reply #11 on: October 21, 2010, 02:18:21 AM »

http://cgi.ebay.com/10-1-LENOVO-IDEAPAD-S10E-Screen-LCD-display-panel-new-/160488207704?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item255dd7b558

I found that, but the aspect ratio is wrong. I guess I was kind of hoping for the higher resolution. I can't seem to find lower resolution 10" screens.

Do you guys think that putting this in an aluminum enclosure will create any issues? I figure it'd help act as a heatsink so I could avoid using a fan. Does the shielding help/hurt with jittering? The enclosure gives me .75" of depth, so I was hoping I could sneak the controller under the wacom and panel. Do you think that might be possible? Or will I have to put it beside the wacom?

Thanks again guys.
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jpanichella
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« Reply #12 on: November 11, 2010, 06:12:45 PM »

Okay, I finally heard back from them after asking them to find me an 800x600 screen instead of the higher resolution alternative. They're telling me that they can get me the screen and the controller all working together, and they can ship it to me for about 125 dollars total. Is that a good deal? Seems like the best I can do right now.
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Angrysunshine
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« Reply #13 on: November 11, 2010, 07:23:16 PM »

I actually found quite a few screens on ebay, though I think they come with digitizers attached. I don't remember if that's a problem. I decided to order one because it was cheap. When I measured the one I ordered, it turned out to be 10.5". I'm working with the seller to see if they can send me an item like the one they described, a 10" screen.

I'm new to the DIY Cintiq stuff and I don't remember about shielding. I've heard grounding can help with jitter, but perhaps you've already considered that.
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jpanichella
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« Reply #14 on: November 11, 2010, 08:25:48 PM »

A lot of those 10 inch screens are for an HP digitizer tablet, I forget the particular model number. NYJTouch doesn't have a controller that jives with them.
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