Color DMD swap

March 1, 2018

A color DMD is the best mod you can put in a DMD (Dot Matrix display) pinball machine. these machines were the only thing going from about 1991 until 2013. . I bought one for my Guns N Roses machine about five years back. When I bought it, the LCD screens were new, and in favor. So, I bought an LCD version. Here is it below. The "Location ID" and "1 Ball Missing" are just plain old orange on the original display. 

 

The screen image is smooth and colorful. To my mind, the orange display on the originals was better match to the machine's vibe. But, I also liked the color effects. At $369.00 for a color DMD, I stuck with my choice. I set it to "Dots XL" which made the display look like large dot matrix-style dots. But, I saw how cool the LED one looked in a Jurassic Park machine, and I decided to change it, once I saw the real LED in a Data East machine. 

 

The new display arrived today. Here it is in its box. It's well packed. The instructions are pretty clear, and there are a ton of tutorials on youtube on how to install them. 

 

Well, you have to take off the old one, remove the display board, screw the display board on the new one, and hook it back up. This was easy, because I already had the power set up for the old one. 

You also have to flash the system to get the correct animations from the site onto the display board. Essentially, they hand colored all of the single color display images. So, kudos to Color DMD, you're doing great work.

 

Once I put it back in, and you can see a bit of a difference. It is brighter, so I'll probably tone it down a bit. The LED screen is the right size, and the LCD one stuck out the top, preventing the light panel from swinging out. So, it feels more original. this way.  

 

This is the new display. It doesn't look that much different in the photo, but it feels more in tune with the machine. It's brighter. It is more pixelated, which seems to fit better.

 

The process took me less than 20 minutes from start to finish, because the power was already set up for me. 

 

 

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