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Hardware Thread, Turning cheap digital photo frame into projector in Technical; Hello All, Having bought my sister a cheap Matsui 5" PF-A500X for Christmas, I saw them in the Currys sale ...
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    dhicks's Avatar
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    Turning cheap digital photo frame into projector

    Hello All,

    Having bought my sister a cheap Matsui 5" PF-A500X for Christmas, I saw them in the Currys sale (18) and got one myself. Has anyone had one of these things apart? Is it possible to turn the LCD screen into a projector? I've seen guides around on turning old laptop screens into projectors by basically taking the LCD panel out and shining a light through them, anyone tried it with a cheap photo frame?

    Standard projectors look unsightly just sort of parked on a table with cables running all over the pace and a PC attached to actually display pictures - does anyone make a simple photo projector, preferably something that could be neatly mounted on a standard camera tripod for easy adjustment? Something with a built-in card reader and sideshow display mode, that just needs the one power cable to run it.

    --
    David Hicks

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    nephilim's Avatar
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    you can do it, but you would need to generate about 1000 lumens, that its really no point as getting a bulb that does 1000 lumens would be like going to buy a projector. Best best is buy one.

    Do like I did in my friends front room, I have his tv and sky HD and home cinema system hooked into a projector and as such, he basically have a 70 inch "TV" in his front room. The tv itself is hidden away in a boxed unit so that it is unseen, however the cabling is trunked up and such like and the way the room is decorated, very hard to see.
    Last edited by nephilim; 5th January 2009 at 09:47 AM.

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    Domino's Avatar
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    Would the reolution really be up to it too - the ones I've seen look dreadful at a small size, imagine it increased.....

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    plexer's Avatar
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    Plus how do you feed in the vga or video signal to a frame which reads photos/video off a memory card.

    You could use it for playback of movies from a memory card but thats about all.

    Lumens wouldn't have to massively high to play around with really.

    Ben

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    dhicks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by plexer View Post
    Plus how do you feed in the vga or video signal to a frame which reads photos/video off a memory card.
    Sorry, misunderstanding - I want this to play back photos, just like it does at the moment. This is for parents evenings, etc - at the moment we generally set up a laptop and standard digital projector to run through a bunch of photos using Google photo screensaver, it just looks rather untidy is the only problem. I'm not to fussed about resolution, either - I figure if it works with a cheap 18 photo frame I'll maybe have a try with a more expensive one.

    So far I've got the digital photo frame apart and have tried shining a torch through the screen, which just produces a funny-coloured blur. If I understand correctly, I need a light source, then a lens to focus that light (why?), then another lens to do something-or-other to the light after it's passed through the LCD screen. Some stuff I've seen uses fresnel lenses, some use the lenses from cheap magnifying glasses. We've got a couple of old-fashioned overhead projectors floating around upstairs (which, thinking about it, are a light-source, fresnel lens, transparency to be projected, then another adjustable lens), I'll see what happens when I put the LCD screen on one of those (with a bit of a gap, and maybe a small PC case fan blowing across to stop it overheating, by all accounts). I'm thinking I might also try an integrated version with a PC on a stand, with an overhead projector standing on top then a stripped-down LCD screen on the projector's plate.

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    David Hicks

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    SYNACK's Avatar
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    The old style OHP is the easiest way to go. The lenses are needed to focus the light source back into a tight beam that can be adjusted to get a clear image. Without the lense the light just comes out in all directions and is not in a tight enough beam to project an image properly.

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    dhicks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SYNACK View Post
    The old style OHP is the easiest way to go.
    Right-oh. Has anyone else tried this? Specifically, can anyone recommend a particular brand/make/model number of LCD monitor that is easy to take apart and use as a transparent projector screen?

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    David Hicks

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    SYNACK's Avatar
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    Here is a guide to building an OHP based one:
    Inventgeek.com - DIY Home Projector - Overview

    Here are a bunch of other guides:
    DIY Projector

    Here is a wiki guide on making one but it is the more complicated type:
    DIY Projector Guide - Part 1 - The Parts - Lumenlab

    and another lense based one:
    DIY Projector on the Cheap

  9. Thanks to SYNACK from:

    dhicks (6th January 2009)

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    webman's Avatar
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    OHP sounds like it might work. What about the old 35mm slide projectors too, or are they too small?

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    dhicks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SYNACK View Post
    Here is a guide to building an OHP based one:
    Ah! Thanks for that - found a guide to monitors people had had success with, I've just ordered a Dell 1505FP off eBay. For others reading this thread who might be interested, the monitor information was a bit spammed / untidy - here is a very short summary:

    Code:
    Make      Model       Size    Comments
    Acer      AL1715s-8
    Acer      AL1916W     19"     Easy
    Acer      AL1512      15"
    Acer      X191WSD     19"
    Acer      AL1714
    Acer      P191W       19"
    Acer      AL1512M     15"
    Acer      AL1711B     17"
    Acer      AL1711S     17"
    Acer      AL506       15"
    Acer      AL1516AB    15"
    Asus      PM17TU      17"     Not easy.
    Asus      VW161       15.6"   Easy.
    Belinea   1705S1      17"     Easy
    Benq      Q7T3        17"     Easy
    Benq      FP757       17"     Easy
    Benq      FP937s      19"
    BenQ      FP557S      15"
    BenQ      FP581S      15"
    BenQ      FP591       15"
    BenQ      FP531       15"
    BenQ      FP557S      15"
    BenQ      FP581S      15"
    BenQ      FP591       15"
    BenQ      FP731       17"
    BenQ      FP767
    BenQ      T52WA       15"     Easy. Antiglare.
    Benq      FP71V       17"     Easy. No antiglare.
    Dell      E193fpc     17"     Easy.
    Dell      1504FP
    Dell      1505FP      15"
    Dell      E153Fpb     15"
    Dell      E172FPb     17"     Antiglare.
    Dell      1707fp      17"     Easy. Antiglare.
    Dell      E171FPb     17"
    Dell      156FP       15"     Easy.
    Seemingly the potential issues are FFC (something to do with how the actual LCD panel is connected to the controlling circuit) and anti-glare coatings that can, presumably, interfere with the image.

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    David Hicks

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    dhicks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dhicks View Post
    Ah! Thanks for that - found a guide to monitors people had had success with, I've just ordered a Dell 1505FP off eBay.
    Hmm - took this apart last night to see how it went. Can't really say it worked well. More like it worked. Well...

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    ICT_GUY's Avatar
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    dabs.com - NEC NP100 2000 Ansi SVGA Projector (60002292)

    217 for a bright projector. (plus a friend of mine has a projector and no tv and pays no license fee, and can still use iplayer!)

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    maniac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ICT_GUY View Post
    dabs.com - NEC NP100 2000 Ansi SVGA Projector (60002292)

    217 for a bright projector. (plus a friend of mine has a projector and no tv and pays no license fee, and can still use iplayer!)
    A friend of mine tried that, but believe it or not the TV licensing authority acually applied to his ISP to see if he had been using I-player or other TV on demand services, and when they had evidence that he had, they fined him for evading the license fee.

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    Quote Originally Posted by maniac View Post
    A friend of mine tried that, but believe it or not the TV licensing authority acually applied to his ISP to see if he had been using I-player or other TV on demand services, and when they had evidence that he had, they fined him for evading the license fee.
    my ISP does not release any information like that unless it is with a court order, and I doubt a TV License request would be court sanctioned as it is a civil matter, so poor show from his ISP.

    But then again, why should he get for free what we all pay for. If he is watching the content, he should pay up.

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    you dont need a licence to use the BBC iPlayer, as long as you are not watching programs at the same time as they are being broadcast

    If you use the BBC iPlayer to watch BBC programmes after they have been broadcast - either to download, or via streaming 'on demand' you will not need a TV Licence.
    Link

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