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Author Topic: LCD mod question - parallel to serial?  (Read 1771 times)

V

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LCD mod question - parallel to serial?
« on: July 11, 2004, 08:25:38 PM »

Hey, new guy here.
I've been looking into the "cheap LCD" mod for awhile now (mostly out of boredom). I've read up on the guide at this site, as well as several guides from all over the place. I like the guide here, except that I also like my printer, and prefer to dedicate the parallel port solely to that. But I've also purchased a pretty nice 20x2 lcd from crystalfontz, so I don't want to abandon the project.

Now I'm aware of all the serial backpacks that are available (although they're beginning to be difficult to find, especially wirz), and I've actually already tried one of them - the econo lcd serial backpack from HVGtech (or whatever that site was called). Didn't work. I'd just go ahead and buy a different serial backpack and try that out, but by the end of that I would have spent as much as I would have if I had just bought a matrix orbital from the start. And not spending that much is half the fun of this.

I had actually forgotten about this whole thing for awhile, until I happened to spot a little parallel to serial converter at radioshack. And so I'm wondering... would that thing work? Or perhaps more importantly, if it could theoretically work, would it be very likely for it to work with the LCD software that's currently available? Google hasn't turned up anything on it, and I haven't read about anyone trying that anywhere... So somehow I'm predicting a barrage of 'no's,but I thought it best to check anyway.
Thanks,
V
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PIYIRIO

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LCD mod question - parallel to serial?
« Reply #1 on: July 11, 2004, 08:32:02 PM »

i seriously doubt it would work. the good thing about rat shack is thatr you can always return it. i'd give it a shot. you can always buy a pci parallel card. i wouldn't imagine them being too much...

*edit* see if your printer is a usb OR parallel printer... if not, use both: http://www.newegg.com/app/ViewProductDesc.asp?description=15-104-211&depa=1
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LCD mod question - parallel to serial?
« Reply #2 on: July 11, 2004, 09:09:23 PM »

if that parallel to serial converter you saw was just a 25pin to 9-pin adapter, it most probably won't work, since "parallel" and "serial" lcd wise isn't necessarily the same.  From what I've been reading, there's a pin(/s) in the pinout of the LCD for "parallel" that is needed for "serial" mode.  That is also depending on the type of LCD you have.  like if you're gonna use the parallel port in your PC, you would use all 10 pins (for example).  if you're gonna use serial, you would use one of those pins only.  Now some LCD's have a small add-on board for serial mode (like what I've seen lately, just an additional 9-pin port and an oscillator).  What you can do is find a pinout of your LCD or better yet, a datasheet to get more info.  Maybe yours was just a straight-forward parallel/serial mode and all you need is one wire for data to go to your serial port, and a +5v and GND line to power it.
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Skylined

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LCD mod question - parallel to serial?
« Reply #3 on: July 11, 2004, 09:10:17 PM »

Why don't you get a PCI card with a Parallel Port?
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V

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LCD mod question - parallel to serial?
« Reply #4 on: July 11, 2004, 10:27:11 PM »

The only problem with that is that I'm kind of running short on PCI slots... sound card, tv tuner, modem, etc. There's an extra slot there, but I was kind of hoping to leave it free for either a wireless or firewire card.
And this LCD definitely doesn't come with serial I/O. It just has the standard 16 LCD pinouts (crystalfontz model CFAH2002A-RGB-JP)
Eh, but I guess if I can find a pci for that cheap in town, I'll just say to hell with it for now and maybe change it later. ...I'm kinda too lazy to go buy off of newegg right now, even if they do deliver extremely fast (doesn't help that I have no cash on my card).  :embr:
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viridius

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LCD mod question - parallel to serial?
« Reply #5 on: July 12, 2004, 12:21:34 AM »

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LCD mod question - parallel to serial?
« Reply #6 on: July 12, 2004, 09:11:56 AM »

Quote from: viridius
How about this little ditty?


interesting, interesting.  hmm.  Thanks for that one viridius.  I might try that with the mystery VFD me and error are working on.
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linear

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LCD mod question - parallel to serial?
« Reply #7 on: July 12, 2004, 11:31:46 AM »

When you are trying to assess the degree of difficulty, keep in mind that Matrix Orbital is an entire company built around basically the conversion of parallel LCDs to serial (and now usb). They mainly sell to shops making embedded systems--so if their usual customer base (engineers) find it easier/more cost-effective to buy a packaged solution than to design and integrate it, maybe the same would be true in your case.

You also have to consider the software side of it--if you use a homebrew serial interface, you'll have to write your own peecee software to send whatever commands and info it needs.
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