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Have you ever lost an LCD?

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Most digital gear has some kind of LCD display. Of particular concern is the display on the EXPENSIVE pieces of gear.


As I understand it, if the backlight goes out, the display is screwed. You cannot just replace a backlight.


But what if the display goes? Can these things be replaced? Does it cost a fortune? If you have the new display, it should be an easy DIY repair. BUT, you have to have the new display.


Are these things standard -like replacing a harddrive or something?


It scares me, because without the display, the gear is pretty much useless. You HAVE to be able to see what you are doing.



Super 8


Hear my stuff here


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I have a E-Mu Vintage keys unit with a bad display. I can still use the unit though by shining a light into the display and I can then read the settings, barely, but still I can use it. The display looks like a real tough job to replace though, if not impossible.


This has become a major disappointment to me about digital stuff with a LCD display. It kind of puts a time limit on your expensive gear.

Living' in the shadow,

of someone else's dream....

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The display on my Roland XP-80 developed an odd symptom a few years back; it looks as if someone spilled digital black ink on the upper layer, but below the top layer. The 'spill' covers a small by unavoidable area in the display, and if something tries to read through it, I usually have to go by gut instinct. It started out small, and grew to a certain size, then stopped. Thankfully.

It's one of those things that, even when I had the money, I was still hesitant to spend $150 on the new LCD...don't know why. Of course, it's now biting me in the ass.

Cool thing is, I've got a super-thick Newark Electronics catalogue that looks like it might have a replacement display in it for significantly less. If so, I'll wait until we get a little more fully into summer (less static electricity; boy, do we have static up here!), and do the surgery.

I've upped my standards; now, up yours.
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Roland digital parametric equalizer, circa 1995. That thing was darn expensive back then. 3 years later the display died and I couldn't have it fixed unless I payed a kings ransom. It just sits there on the shelf. Even if the display worked, I couldnt sell it now for $50. Worst investment I ever did.


What do we want? Procrastination!

When do we want it? Later!

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LCD displays are generally custom designed for each piece of gear they go with. There are a couple of ways to connect them. The most common way is with a flex circuit bonded to the LCD glass.


With any luck, you have a conncector on the other end (rather than having the flex conductor bonded right to the PC board). If not, you have to replace the display and circuit card together.


Another way is to have a plug-in connector. Even with these, care is necessary and the cable and connectors are extremely delicate and don't respond well to contaminants such as skin oil.


For some backlit displays, it is possible to add a high-efficiency white LED to replace a dying backlight. You need a diffuser of some type to spread the light out a bit; extremely thin paper will do in a pinch... You need to add a dropping resistor in series with the LED to set the current level.


Every design is different. If you are not competent in micro-electronics, the odds are excellent that it will just end up destroyed. Of course, if the gear in otherwise unusable, it may be worth a try. But beware of electroluminescent lighting - it runs on high voltage.

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