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Author Topic: Pickl3bob's tablet conversion  (Read 50591 times)
Pickl3bob
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« on: June 15, 2011, 04:07:39 AM »

I have wanted a tablet PC (none of that iPad crap!) for years, but have never bought one because the performance/price ratio has always been terrible when compared to regular Laptops, and very few if any have discrete graphics. HP's tx and tm series have begun to change that, but even the best tm2 puts up similar benchmarks to my 3 year old dell. Fujitsu's new T901 can be configured with a graphics card, but costs minimum $2000 Shocked

So I'm building my own. After hearing that the tm2 digitizers are connected via USB, I figured I could buy a new laptop and find digitizers on ebay and put them together to make my own tablet. After seeing Trashie's findings on the digitizer from the tx2 http://forum.bongofish.co.uk/index.php?topic=1870.0, I decided to go for it.

The major components of my build are a new Sony Vaio S and the dual digitizers from a late Fujitsu T1510 or a T900. This set consists of both an EMR digitizer  (SU5E-13W08AS-01X) for pen input,

* DSC03494_comp.JPG (472.2 KB. 1778x1000 - viewed 702 times.)


and a capacitive digitizer (FTU2-13W01S-01A) for multitouch input.

* DSC03507.JPG (475.12 KB. 1920x1080 - viewed 579 times.)


* DSC03505_comp.JPG (487.14 KB. 1920x1080 - viewed 677 times.)


One interesting thing to note about this digitizer set is the board with the 14 pin connector is on the capacitive digitizer, not the EMR one. (see pic 3) In the detail below, this connector is labeled  "CN1". The 12 pin connector CN2 is used to connect to the EMR digitizer.

* DSC03504_comp.JPG (499.64 KB. 1920x1080 - viewed 701 times.)


So far, I have bought the digitizers, the connector, and the laptop. I have also done a preliminary dis-assembly of the laptop and determined that the digitizers should fit in the lid with if I rework the bezel a little bit. I have also removed a USB port from an old mp3 player so I can build a USB test rig for the digitizers before I put them in the laptop.

I plan to test the digitizers using the spec Wacom provides for the dev board for their CapPlus products (http://www.wacom-components.com/downloads/Wacom_CapPLUS_Serial+USB_CCB-002-XXX.pdf) This spec is very similar to what Trashie is using for the digitizer from the tx2000.

Once the digitizers are working, I will figure out some way to fit them into the lid of my laptop and then figure out a way to make the screen flip around. The lid is only about 1/4 inch (about 6 mm)thick and has an odd angle, so I probably won't do a traditional hinge/rotation point. I'm thinking about separating things into two components. I would use original hinge for folding the lid flat, and I would insert a rotation point somewhere in the lid. Since there probably isn't room for a traditional rotation point, I'm thinking of two friction type contacts near the edge of the lid that would release the screen portion of the lid when pulled straight up. The rotation point would probably just serve as a guide. I'll post pics/grapics of this later, I didn't get a chance to take pics of the laptop when it was light out, and my camera does terribly in the evening.

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Ueki
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« Reply #1 on: June 15, 2011, 01:37:12 PM »

You said the digitizers from a late Fujitsu T1510 or a T900. Did you get both to see which would work better or haven't received the item yet to check?

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Pickl3bob
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« Reply #2 on: June 16, 2011, 02:39:06 AM »

You said the digitizers from a late Fujitsu T1510 or a T900. Did you get both to see which would work better or haven't received the item yet to check?

According to the guy I bought them from, the same set is used in both. Earlier T1510s only had the EMR digitizer, the dual digitizer option didn't become available until shortly before Fujitsu reworked their model numbers. The 1510, 900 and now 901 are all built around the same base, Fujitsu just throws new parts and a new model number on it about one a year.

The digitizers that are pictured are actually all mine. I haven't tested them yet, I'm waiting on the parts to make a cable.
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Pickl3bob
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« Reply #3 on: June 16, 2011, 04:36:09 AM »

As promised, here are pics of the laptop.

The lid:

* DSC03522_comp.JPG (495.77 KB. 1920x1080 - viewed 666 times.)


Where I plan to separate the lid to add a rotation point:

* DSC03523_edit_comp.jpg (490.24 KB. 1920x1080 - viewed 597 times.)


Side view of the laptop with the snaps on the bezel popped showing that the lid will still shut even if it is about 1/8 of an inch thicker.

* DSC03530_comp.JPG (465.12 KB. 1920x1080 - viewed 602 times.)

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Pickl3bob
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« Reply #4 on: June 17, 2011, 05:09:06 AM »

Cable parts came today, damn are they tiny! I spent about three hours working on the connector and got five in. I'm using wire that I already had around that I thought was gauge 30 or 32, but I now I think its actually a little bit bigger. I'll post pics and more info when I get all of the wires connected.
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Pickl3bob
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« Reply #5 on: June 19, 2011, 03:02:56 AM »

Well, I have all of the wires connected for the cable, set up everything the way Trashie did in his tx2000 tablet, and... nothing. I hope I didn't accidentally break a digitizer, but I've tested all of my connections to and from the digitizers, and they are all good.
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bernard
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« Reply #6 on: June 19, 2011, 06:14:53 AM »

I'm having a hard time understanding all this -- does one board meant to connect to the other?  I see a 3.3vdc test point in one of the close shot.  Make sure this reads 3.3v and/or see where this is connected!  I also see a missing ZD1 -- exactly like all the other ones we saw so far: you need to feed 3.3v (it will not work directly off a 5V USB supply).

Can you tell us what connections exactly you have done/tried?  Can you post a picture of your custom connector while plugged in?  Can you post a picture of both complete board -- with enough detail to read the markings.

I assume you saw our (incomplete) wiki page on this already: http://wiki.bongofish.co.uk/doku.php?id=bongofish:penenabled  -- We did not find the definitive recipe to interface all boards as we have contradictory information, but I tried to somehow summarizing the info we have.

Your digitizer model SU5E-13W08AS-01X was not in our "list". I will add it. Any info that you have about it (like its physical size) would be welcomed.
« Last Edit: June 19, 2011, 06:24:16 AM by bernard » Logged
Pickl3bob
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« Reply #7 on: June 19, 2011, 08:58:44 PM »

Sorry I wasn't clear last night, I was frustrated by my lack of success. Here's what I've been up to the past few days.

As I previously posted, I bought my own connecter and contacts. I have a chunk of a cable bundle that has very thin wire that I thought would be small enough, but it turned out to be a bit to big. Not to be dissuaded, I decided to use pliers and my knowledge that metals are ductile to make the wire a little bit smaller. I actually got this working, but it is a royal pain! My advice is to just spend the money and buy a cable. I spent hours crimping the connectors, and when I finally got everything connected and tried to plug the connector into the board, it wouldn't go. It turned out that some of the crimps went in odd and got bent at odd angles, blocking the pins from the board connecter. Imagine the very tip of the wire in this picture bent backwards (right in the picture) at about a 45 degree angle, and you'll get the idea.

* DSC03551_comp.JPG (408.89 KB. 1920x1080 - viewed 570 times.)


Luckily, I bought extra crimps.

Also, the board is very thin and flexible for a pcb, I had to be careful not to snap it in half when removing the connecter. the board really likes to hang on to it.

Yesterday, I actually tried to connect the digitizers to my computer via USB. I initially tried using the connections Trashie uses in his tx2000. When that didn't work, I used the connection in the pdf I mentioned in my first post, and still got nothing. I then removed my home made cable and tested to make sure each wire was making a connection. I used a needle plugged into a protoboard for the pin end, and just used the wire to complete a circuit. I was able to complete the circuit with each wire.

As to those 3.3v test points, I noticed them as I was putting everything away for the day, and are what I am going to test today.

As far as dimension, I get almost the exact same physical dimensions for the physical dimension of my EMR digitizer as are listed for the SU5E-13W01AS-00X. I don't have something that measures .1mm, which probably accounts for all of the difference.

For the capacitive digitizer, I measure 300 x 191mm

The 14 pin connector on the capacitive digitizer is the same as the others as far as specs, 14 pins, 1.0mm pitch. I'm not sure about the 12 pin connectors that are used to connect the digitizers.
Here is a picture of the boards connected

* DSC03585_comp.JPG (495.17 KB. 1778x1000 - viewed 696 times.)


Here is the board on the EMR digitizer

* DSC03495_comp.JPG (495.87 KB. 1920x1080 - viewed 615 times.)


Here is the board attached to the capacitive digitizer

* DSC03501_comp.JPG (498.15 KB. 1813x1020 - viewed 631 times.)


Crimps and connector. They look deceptively big in pictures.

* DSC03536_comp.JPG (433.13 KB. 1920x1080 - viewed 518 times.)


My workspace for doing the crimping. My bundle of wires is on the right, the bright florescent lamp lighting everything is not shown.

* DSC03546_comp.JPG (471.82 KB. 1920x1080 - viewed 512 times.)


Holding a wire in place before crimping.

* DSC03547_comp.JPG (432.2 KB. 1920x1080 - viewed 534 times.)


The finished cable

* DSC03571_comp.JPG (494.06 KB. 1920x1080 - viewed 594 times.)

« Last Edit: June 19, 2011, 09:01:28 PM by Pickl3bob » Logged
Trashie
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« Reply #8 on: June 19, 2011, 09:38:31 PM »

In those photos i just see the digitizer-side of the connector...Can you post a picture of the USB side? Do you have the drivers installed in your PC? Does any USB message appear? Google and download "usbview.exe", exec it, and then connect the board...Any messages?
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Pickl3bob
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« Reply #9 on: June 20, 2011, 03:15:08 AM »

I'll post a pic when I get a chance, but I'm fairly sure that Fujitsu is running these in serial mode. I just found this: http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1484915, which would explain why usbview gave me nothing and why I've never seen a Windows message. I'm debating on whether I should spend about $40 to get a fujitsu LCD cable, or if I should just buy some more crimps (and some properly sized wire) from digi-key.
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Pickl3bob
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« Reply #10 on: June 20, 2011, 05:58:56 AM »

I've done a bit more digging, and am positive that the digitizers are serial. Grrrrr. I'm thinking about taking my own advice and just buying a cable instead of continuing to work on my current one. Bernard, haven't you gotten serial digitizers working via a Teensy, right? does this work with just specific tablets or will it work with any tablet?

Trashie, here is the pic. I know it looks crappy, but it gets the job done.


* DSC03587_comp.JPG (443.4 KB, 1920x1080 - viewed 719 times.)
« Last Edit: June 20, 2011, 06:00:43 AM by Pickl3bob » Logged
bernard
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« Reply #11 on: June 20, 2011, 07:31:46 AM »

Hey! what is that retro-style box on which the breadboard is attached to?  looks cool! Cool

Teensy:  yes, I have a ISDV4 support (tabletpc) with my waxbee project. (It is not perfect, but I can improve easily if you want this). http://forum.bongofish.co.uk/index.php?topic=1738.msg13497#msg13497 I do not know if the fact that it is mixed with the cap. digitizer makes a difference. I do not have this part in my hands to work with it. But if you are not affraid of doing this, we can certainly make it work together and convert your serial tabletpc to USB. (Which OS version are you using these days? Win 64 bits or 32 bits?).  

EDIT: Note that I am only talking about the EMR portion.  For the Cap portion, I do not have a similar USB device to emulate -- is this the same type of sensor as a Bamboo Touch? The teensy can only emulate a single USB device (not two, unless you buy 2 teensy, which is possible but that will use 2 usb ports).  So either we emulate a USB Bamboo Touch (EMR + touch) or we do two emulations: Intuos2 (EMR) and bamboo touch (Touch portion only).  EDIT2: just got an afterthought: doing with two teensy is not ideal since there is only one signal serial port to read from. So it sounds like the best approach is to emulate a bamboo touch or another similar "combo" USB device.

There are two 3.3v test point.  3.3Va and 3.3Vd  I think a stands for analog and d for digital.  

I think pin 13 looks like some sort of power (since the trace is wide) -- this appears to concord with the pinout on the wiki. (3.3v supply).  I would think that 3.3Vd is the thing that must work right away. I am not sure about the analog one. I think refer to "analog" everything that has to do with the special "sensoring" they do.
« Last Edit: June 20, 2011, 03:14:53 PM by bernard » Logged
bernard
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« Reply #12 on: June 20, 2011, 07:35:41 AM »

kudos for the crimping -- I also tried myself and did not finish.  I was able to do something with a 30 gauge wire, but darn, I do not know how these are supposed to look after crimping, because the little "pads" that you crimp alone look too big to fit(?). I had to cut them a little(?).

wrote a (long) post about my experience here:
http://forum.bongofish.co.uk/index.php?topic=1870.msg14068#msg14068

EDIT: just saw that you already responded on that thread!  Oops! (But linking there is still good info to the reader.)
« Last Edit: June 20, 2011, 07:40:57 AM by bernard » Logged
janm
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« Reply #13 on: June 20, 2011, 10:31:09 AM »

cool project so far, it was something I was originally thinking of trying something similar but managed to get hold of a Lenovo thinkpad x200 tablet.

I'm interested in how you modify the lid to flip around.

Jan
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Trashie
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« Reply #14 on: June 20, 2011, 07:13:49 PM »

I dont know if you took that photo after moving cables around, but i think i see only a diode (and a resistor).Have you been using 2 diodes between the USB power and the digitizer Vin pins?
Have you tried to switch the D+ and D- lines?

About the tablet being serial...Have you noticed "activity" in the unconnected pins?Maybe an oscilloscope would help.
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