LED OCD Update

November 28, 2018

I got around to updating the LED OCD board. I borrowed a PC from a friend and started editing the configuration file for the Apollo 13 pinball's LED OCD. The LED OCD software was fairly easy to install. It just needed a driver to communicate with the board over USB. The USB cable gets plugged in directly to the board, like this.

All in all, it was 4-5 minutes to download everything and get it installed. There was no configuration file for Apollo 13, So, it was time to make one. With the USB connected, it's time to start configuring. 

I had to pick from a template, and I wasn't sure what to chose because there were only settings for Williams and Stern games. I really don't think it matters if we're going from scratch, so I picked Stern. Then, it was a matter of using the software to test one lamp at a time. It's pretty tedious, but I was listening to the Special When Lit podcast, so the time flew by. Enter in 50 or so lamps, and you have a start. 

The basic configuration was a huge improvement over the LEDs running without any help. The LEDs were ghosting to the point where the light shows didn't really make a lot of sense. The LED OCD board brought everything closer to normal. 

 

To get it perfect, we have to do some configuration. If you want it, just email me and I'll get it do you when I am damn good and ready.

 

The ghosting on the "food," "water" and "mystery" inserts was the worst. There was also some ghosting on a few of the inserts near the flippers. The moon phases were close, but not perfect. 

 

To fix this, you just manually change the values one at a time until you think it makes sense. The software has a test mode to let you turn on one bulb at a time.

 

You choose a value between 1 and 8. The power is reduced at lower settings and maximum at setting 8. If it's ghosting, the setting is too high. If you drop it too much, the light will be either too dim or totally off.

 

I just watched the show and looked for ghosting. I wrote down the major offenders, and tries to address them. Here's what it looks like.

 

I am a huge fan of the LED OCD board. I am probably going to put one in the latest machine I picked up.  

 

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