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Author Topic: I have access to a laser cutter and an intuos 4 - let's rock.  (Read 8083 times)
wolvenmoon
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« on: April 03, 2014, 05:02:29 AM »

Tablet: Intuos4 large. (I may consider doing this on a medium)

Laser cutter: Epic, owned by my university.

Other makers that can bail me out: Available.

I'm considering just heading on over to tabletmod.com and grabbing their design, but before I did I wanted to check to see about any advice you all have for me. What should and shouldn't I do?

Thanks!
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Aerendraca
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« Reply #1 on: April 04, 2014, 08:41:56 AM »

Hi there Wolvenmoon,

The tablemod kits appear to be pretty well built and there are a few people that have used these (I'm not one of them), so this is a legitimate route for a DIY cintiq builder.

I guess it comes down to what sort of a person you are. Do you like to tinker with stuff? Do you like designing and building things? Do you get a huge amount of satisfaction from creating something from scratch?
I would suggest that if you answered 'YES' unreservedly to those thress questions then you should definately take advantage of you access to the laser cutter, I would!

As for shoulds and should'nts, that's quite an open topic but here's a few of my top personal shoulds:
- Read all the forum, at least read all of the successful builds threads.
- Use a screen designed for a Laptop. They're thinner, use less power, and tend to be better at playing nicely with the tablet (ie less chance of cursor jitter). Look at what other people have used.
- Get a controller that has DVI/DP/HDMI input rather than VGA. VGA is an analog signal that requires converting, a process which in my experience gives off a lot of RF noise (can cause jittering). Also the VGA image isn't as good as the digital counterparts.
- Get a screen that clossely matches the aspect of the tablet, ie 15.4" 16:10 for the Intuos4 Large. Just makes life a bit easier when callibrating the tablet to the screen.

Those are my top shoulds, there is of course a wide range of knowledge around the forum (even if it appears to be a little bit slow to respond), and as always if you get stuck or need advice just ask!
 
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wolvenmoon
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« Reply #2 on: May 28, 2014, 05:11:50 AM »

Hi all!

I've pulled the trigger on the acrylic, the tabletmod.com plans, and I am looking for a screen. Currently I'm looking for a 15.4" 1920x1200 ( or 1680x1050 ) laptop IPS panel + the fixings for it.

Any recommendations?
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Aerendraca
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« Reply #3 on: May 28, 2014, 01:36:05 PM »

For 15.4" you will not find an IPS screen, they simply were not made with that aspect, TN is your only choice. Perhaps a 15.4" TN something like the LG LP154WE3-TLA2 would be OK?

If you went for a 15.6" panel then your options open up significantly and you can get IPS including the upper resolution of 1920x1080. Of course your aspects will be slightly mismatched, but you should be able to compensate for that in the Wacom driver. An example here would be a screen that I considered - the LG LP156WF4-SLB1 (or SLB2, or any SLB... suffix you can get you hands on). I have decided to try a retina build now which is why I put the concept of this panel to one side, but the specs look good, and NJYTouch have a controller that will drive it.

I doubt you will find any panel that comes with fixings unless you break one free from a laptop, but even then they tend to be molded to the chassis.

Hope that helps!
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wolvenmoon
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« Reply #4 on: May 29, 2014, 12:31:28 AM »

Hmm.

That puts me in a bit of an odd position, because I may replicate this build (after getting permission) for art majors in return for tutoring through my art minor and being on older TN panels would make this less appealing to the artists... (I saw this thread: http://forum.bongofish.co.uk/index.php?topic=2374.0 )

So, how off will a 16:9 panel be? Is there any graphic of the Intuos4 large surface+a 16:9 15.6" screen + a 16:10 15.4" screen? My concern is having parts of the monitor that are active but without a digitizer under them.

Speaking of touch, are there any touchscreens that you know of?

I'm contemplating adding a powered USB hub and possibly headphone jacks to it, if I can fit it all!

Edit: Found https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/11275473/simtiq_planner.html
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Aerendraca
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« Reply #5 on: May 29, 2014, 08:26:29 AM »

So I guess - since you've found the Simtiq planner - that you've stuck in the numbers and seen that 5mm top and bottom of the tablet active area will be chopped, and that there will be about 8mm of screen overhang either side. That's not much if you ask me.

I see you've also found the thread where I went into some detail on this matter with another fellow bongoficianado; I still stand by it, 16:9 15.6" panels are more abundant so you have some options here.

As a side note the non-retina macbook pro 15" used a 16:10 15.4" panel [LG LP154WP2] which was well received when it came out so TN panels can't be all bad - although I wouldn't recommend using this panel due to it's very large TCON circuitry (circuit at the bottom of the panel).

As for touchscreen, this might not be as easy to implement. The best option is projected capacitive touch (as the conductive layers are either sandwiched under the surface or on the back of the glass), but this option tends to be expensive. There are other options: Resistive requires pressure to squeeze the conductive layers together - the pen nib would damage this with time but they are cheap, surface capacitive uses an indium tin oxide layer (ITO) - relatively expensive and the pen nib would scratch this off with time, Infra red detection - pen nib would not affect these but they tend to be bulky and expensive, and Surface Acoustic Wave (SAW) - again pen nib would not affect this type but they tend to be expensive and bulky. I think a number of people on the forums have spit-balled the idea of using touch but as far as i know nobody has successfully implemented this yet.
« Last Edit: May 29, 2014, 08:39:26 AM by Aerendraca » Logged
wolvenmoon
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« Reply #6 on: May 29, 2014, 11:39:27 PM »

Yeah, I'm in on the 15.6" screen.

I'm actually planning on borrowing my school's laser cutter. T here was a grad student in a related department to mine that got way in to touch screens and surfaces. I'll bet I could ask around about it there. I was hoping there was a panel with a touchscreen already in place.

I'm fine just jumping in to strapping a monitor onto a tablet. I think building the custom touchscreen is going to be beyond what I can do for my current build - but it sounds like it'd be fun/educational to build one anyway!
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wolvenmoon
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« Reply #7 on: June 01, 2014, 12:47:13 AM »

I looked up your screen and it appeared to be a 6-bit IPS screen, (so 2^18 maximum colors), I'm looking for one that can get closer to 2^24 via any kind of wizardry that the screen-wizards want to implement! So I've gone digging! I'm going to document the process for future Googlers! Cheesy

This is what I've found:
https://hackpad.com/Best-Panels-Wiki-D5UvkrtVvJ9

Which suggested that I should just go for the 2^18 screen rather than trying the other stuff. It's a good resource, though!

I read this post and scanned the first few pages of the actual thread: http://forum.notebookreview.com/hp-envy-hdx/636482-envy-15-ips-red-vs-orange-tally-33.html#post8376146 It has me a bit spooked about the LP156WF04 panels. I went and found the latest revision of them here: http://www.panelook.com/LP156WF4-SLB6_LG%20Display_15.6_LCM_overview_18873.html and found that they use a hard antiglare coating. I'm curious to know if stripping the AG coating from the panel would lead to a better experience. I know how to do this from this thread: http://hardforum.com/showthread.php?t=1674033 , which is also an LG panel.

So, on the controller, I'm just looking for a 40-pin LVDS connector, right? The tabletmod official stance is that the DVI/VGA combo controllers have more interference than plain-old-VGA, but the system that I'm going to be hooking this up to may not be able to output over VGA (Geez, I feel old, I remember when VGA was the new thing). So getting something running off of DVI/HDMI/Displayport would be perfect.

To do this I think I may need to look at shielding, http://forum.bongofish.co.uk/index.php?topic=2361.0 . My question is: How would I connect the monitor to a common ground with the Intuos4 without popping open the Intuos4?

This actually gives me a unique issue. I'll have the monitor connected to mains and then the tablet connected via USB to my computer, run through my motherboard, out my power supply, and from there it'll connect to mains/the ground. I don't know how I'd handle getting things on a common ground. Do you have any suggestions for me?
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Aerendraca
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« Reply #8 on: June 01, 2014, 10:21:51 PM »

The way I look at the argument for 6bit vs 8bit comes down simply to availability, cost, and Cintiq hacking potential. As with most things in life there is a trade off between what you hope to achieve and your means to achieve it. With the panel selection process this is very much one of those trade offs. Sure having a 15.4", RGB 8bit 16.7million colour, IPS, super thin panel with LED backlighting, high colour gamut percentile, fast refresh rate, low power, and 100% DIY Cintiq jitter attenuation would be outstanding, however such a panel doesn't exist - or at least not in a financially attainable way. Instead we are forced to take some compromises along the way, of which moving from 15.4" to 15.6" and 8bit to 6bit may well be a couple of these. Ultimately I guess for you it will come down to how you intend the final product to be used; Perhaps you will use it for quick sketches that you will move on to to an Eizo Colouredge monitor for finalizing, perhaps you are doing web graphics where colour reproduction isn't so critical, maybe the colour correction algorithms that 6bit utilizes creates a noticeable flickering for you that you find abhorrent.

Although I didn't chose to use the LP156WF4 in the end, I did spend a very many hours researching loads of panels and finding reviews for laptops/monitors that used the panels to get a feel of which might be the best for a task such as a DIY Cintiq, the WF4 one out. The reasons why I like this panel are the OK colour gamut percentile, high resolution, thin profile, positive reviews of laptop displays that employ it, it's apparent availability, the cost, that NJYTouch had a controller that could drive it (via DVI and HDMI), and probably most importantly (for me) that the TCON board on this particular panel was super small making it a great choice for embedding in a relatively small enclosure. I also just had a feeling about this panel that it wouldn't cause me problems with jitter on account of the low power consumption, low profile, and tiny TCON board. I think at various stages during my research I went to the same web pages that you have linked above too.

In relation to all this I can add that I believe it was the SLB2 which suffered from being a bit too Orange, and that the most recent iteration is the SLB7 - although I never did work out if the SLC1 was newer or just different in some way. Also, at the time it seemed that you could pick one of these panels up quite cheaply, however I later found out that sellers on ebay lie sometimes and that it's worth probing them with questions before committing. Since you've found panelook try taking a look into the advanced search to see if something more suitable for you now exists; please note my suggestion was just that and I shalln't be offended if you go with something else, I'd actively praise your pursuit!

As for shielding, this is another entirely in depth area to discuss and since it has been discussed quite a bit on the forums already I think I will just leave you to have a dig around for answers and ask questions when you come to it.

I suppose you might try a common ground via the DVI/HDMI socket and Wacom USB socket since the metal outer casing is connected to the ground of the wacom circuitry. You might not ever have to worry about this though depending on how you implement your build. I would therefore suggest that if you come across this problem, go ahead and ask some questions, shows us some pictures of what you have and we'll see what we can do.

 
« Last Edit: June 01, 2014, 10:23:32 PM by Aerendraca » Logged
wolvenmoon
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« Reply #9 on: June 04, 2014, 05:37:07 AM »

So, I'm ready to pull the trigger. Here's my todo list! Also would you verify that I have my ducks in a row?

Currently I have:
Tabletmod SVGs
Acrylic sheets

Currently I have yet to order but will do soon:
The screws for the tabletmod
To modify the svgs to accept the different panel size

I think I need to order these parts:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/NEW-15-6-Full-HD-LED-LCD-SCREEN-FOR-LP156WF4-SL-B7-LP156WF4-SLB7-/360915656442?pt=US_Laptop_Screens_LCD_Panels&hash=item54083fdefa

http://www.ebay.com/itm/M-NT68676-VGA-DVI-HDMI-controller-board-kit-for-LP156WF4-SLB1-LED-Panel1920x1080-/271503090500?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item3f36d86344

And after this, I should be good to laser cut a few things and start assembly? I'm not very happy with the controller board - I may need some help locating a different one.

Thank you so much for your help!
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Aerendraca
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« Reply #10 on: June 04, 2014, 07:23:00 AM »

Nice! I look forward to seeing how you get on with this.

One thing I would note is that when I was hunting for the same screen, every seller listed the LG LP156WF4 but actually sold the Chi Mei N156HGE-LB1. See my build log for the Serenitiq2 post 14 for the differences: http://forum.bongofish.co.uk/index.php?topic=2372.0
The best way of spotting whether a seller is likely to do this is by look for the words 100% compatible; I would try contacting the seller before hand and asking if you will actually receive the screen advertised.

I'm based in the UK and it just seemed impossible to find this panel anywhere and I got frustrated with sellers lieing about the panel they had for sale and abandoned it. I would imaine that you should have a much better chance of finding this screen being based in the US, you have a far bigger market to explore.

What's your issue with the controller, is it size? It's a pretty rhobust pcb and I like the option of dvi/hdmi although I would never use the audio feature. I think that NJYTouch do sell a smaller board but I forget what it's called, I'll see if I can find some reference to it somewhere.
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wolvenmoon
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« Reply #11 on: June 07, 2014, 11:15:37 PM »

My concern is that it's specific to a revision of the panel and I'd really like to get a controller borad that only had HDMI/displayport or DVI/displayport and no other inputs - I think that the more that's strapped onto it, the more chance for interference it has!

But I think that as long as it's compatible with the panel I'll be alright.

Thanks for the heads up on the panel. I'm digging through other listings now!
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wolvenmoon
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« Reply #12 on: June 16, 2014, 02:37:27 AM »

I've been looking for the panel and have spent a huge amount of time digging for it. The vendors that have replied have said they aren't carrying it, other vendors just flat out don't reply and charge many times more.

I'm considering just grabbing the Chi Mei panel. It could be the difference between a $70 panel that should be what I'm expecting and a $170-$220 panel that could be anything.
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Aerendraca
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« Reply #13 on: June 16, 2014, 07:40:43 AM »

In all honesty i'm sure that the chi mei screen will be fine, i just didn't like being lied to when i was on the hunt for the lg panel. Apart from anything else the fact that the chi mei also has a small TCON board and no ribbons is definitely a positive since it will be so much easier to enclose and should help to keep jitter to a minimum.
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wolvenmoon
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« Reply #14 on: June 25, 2014, 02:53:46 AM »

Before I pull the trigger on this (I was delayed and am finally picking my modding projects back up) I wanted to ask: What about the power supply?

Is there anything I need to get to get the LCD to turn on beyond the controller (any suggested changes on that?), the power supply, and the panel itself?
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