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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
How-To build an Expensive Grade A+ 2560x1440 IPS LED Display
For less then $300?

Well, before I begin I would like to say a few things first. One, I do not have a great camera, its an Olympus SP-600UZ 12MP. However, I will be using a tripod with all images and videos, as I go, so this Build Log will consist of the best possible pics I can provide. Sorry if its not the best quality. Two, I'm doing this Build Log of a custom DIY display because I was asked by several users here to do it. Normally I would have just done my mod or build and been done with it, but with the extra amount of interest I am getting on this I figured I might as well do a Build Log of it. lol

And Three, why not just buy a cheap Korean monitor you ask? Well, this should be easy to understand, I simply can not get myself to buy a cheap monitor, not one with sub-par grade A- panels. Heck many of them are being shipped with B parts, and I can't get myself to do that. Knowing me, if it came with 100 dead pixels, I still would not ship it back to Korea. I simply will not risk having to deal with that event. Besides, I have been building, modding, designing, re-designing stuff my whole life, so all I need is tools and materials (and I have both) and its a done deal. So, ask me why again, and I will simply say "Because I Can" and it was fun to put together :)

Oh and one last thought, I did NOT re-size these images (4 or so megs when I uploaded them I think), so if OCN does not reduce the quality of these pics, this thread will not be 56k friendly. Sorry.

Materials used in this Build Log:
1. HP-Z1 Screen (LG H-IPS LM270WQ1-SDDB) Designed by HP but built by Pegatron
2. Overclocking Kit from Joshua at emaxeon.com (No longer available)
3. Power Brick Model: EFL-2202W or FY2405000, which is a 24V 5A power supply. Pin outs are as follows.



So, with no further ado here is what I am doing. Try to imagine a "Perfect Pixel, NO BLB, Catleap 2B Premium Ultra Extreme OC" display and THAT is what I am after here. I am using a Grade A++ 2560x1440 LG IPS Display (a 2013 H-IPS model $1000+ just for the panel direct from HP) brand new and almost naked meant for the amazing AIO HP Z1. These are warranty replacement screens that come with the panel AND the Z1 steel framed beautiful Glass bezel. These are the best of the best of 2013 IPS panels, in the way of build quality that is, but in matte finish. I'm not sure how long the seller will have these in stock so if you plan on doing this do not waste much time as this panel is worth much much more directly from HP. Anyway, for an idea of what it looks like, here is a pic of the Z1 AIO.
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And this is the desk I am planning on installing it into. Not much but it is what I have.


Since I am going to keep my Dell, and do a two monitor setup, I decided my desk did not have enough surface area, so I had to extend it further to the left a bit, 9" inches (228.6 mm) further to be exact. What you see in the image above, under the Dell, is a high quality laminated MDF material I pulled out of a broken treadmill. Yeah, the board people walk and run on. I cut it 18" x 11" (457.2 x 279.4) and just bolted it down with a few Nuts/Bolts I found in the parts bins.


Oh, and here is some data as to what you get by mix and matching these parts. I'm not sure on the brightness as that may or may not be dictated by either the board you are replacing or the LED driver which may be part of the panel. Thus I do not know the spec we end up with here. I am using Panelook and tftcentral my for info. Just click on the chart below for a somewhat larger size. I suck at paint apparently, but it is coming out not how I made it. Its really big on my screen but really small and blurry after I posted it. So, for a really large version click on the imgur link.

Yellow = Panel Model in question.
Green = What you actually get.
Red = What you do not get.
Purple = Uncertain of the result.
Larger Chart Version: http://i.imgur.com/YNuYERq.png



Also, if your interested in Overclocking, using my 5870 I was only able to get it up to 100hz before problems started to happen. However, with a little tightening of the timings I managed to get a stable Overclock using the timings below. This works up to 105hz, but to push it any further I will need a better DVI cable capable of 11.9 Gbps (24awg maybe) and possibly better video card.

My Timings:
Active Horizontal: 2560
Active Vertical: 1440
Front Porch: 48 - 2
Sync Width: 32 - 2
Back Porch: 64 - 2
Blanking: 144 - 6
Total: 2704 - 1446
Pixel Clock: 375.3 Mhz

Anyway, now all we need is someone who can review monitors and has professional instruments to test this combination. I'm curious what I have been left with here, lol. Is it really a 6ms display now? What is the true brightness level?

Stay tuned for the PCB box build.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Ok, and now on to the PCB Box.

Since I do not have the original PCB box you would find on a Yamakasi or Overlord monitor, I have to think of a way to mount the DVI PCB, right? Well I was going through one of our many storage units out back when I came across half a dozen white boxes. When I opened the boxes I discovered three of these what looked to be parts bins, in EACH white box, 18 in total. However, after asking around I discovered that they are in fact Ammo Can bins, the sectional bins you find in Military type ammo cans. However, the owner did not need or want them and gave all 18 to me... lol, I only needed two...
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(Oh, and don't ask why we have Ammo cans)

This is what it looked like BEFORE I attacked it with my Dremel. Inside diameter is roughly 10-1/4" x 5-1/4" and 2" deep. (273.05 x 133.35 x 50.80)

Bottom side.


I will be needing two of these, one as the bottom, which will need all the walls, partitions etc removed so as to only leave me with a flat surface to adhere directly to the monitors rear metal surface. And the other as the "Cover" and for mounting a custom made USB Fan, for extreme cooling. Remember when I said I need reliability? EDIT: OK, after much self debate, I realized that the MDF laminated flooring material fits inside the PCB cover near perfectly all on its own. So, instead of attaching it to the plastic base, I am going to just attach the Laminate flooring, a.k.a the PCB base directly to the panel using double sided tape, for now. I'm going to be using very little DS tape because I suspect that the glossy may become an annoyance down the road, but until I try it as-is, I really will not know. There for I need the pcb, its box and base to be easily removable.

Here is what it looks like AFTER cutting all the material off of it. I used a Dremel with a #545 Diamond wheel, and some wire cutters to snip away and a standard razor knife. I am going to finish it up with a good filing and sanding, and then glue some Laminate Flooring material onto it as the base of the PCB mounting.


Here is the side where the DVI PCB will go. See the little feet in the corners? That helps the bins stack on top of each other, but for my purpose it will help guide the cover on top of the base layer.


OK, now for the material I need to mount the PCB to. I looked for days, and the only thing I could find around here, that made sense, was a few left over Laminated flooring pieces from a flooring project that occurred about 10 years ago. Bout time these get put to good use. I didnt get a pic of the full piece before cutting it, but I did get one with a mobo standoff sitting on it. As you can see it is of perfect thickness, exactly 5/16" thick (7.9 mm) to be exact.


And now, some pics of the cutting. I used a standard table saw with a MDF blade. The cuts were really good and clean, and straight (although the pics seem to suggest the cuts were not straight, but they are), however when I made center "slits" for the middle plastic partitions (I am leaving some partition material for extra box strength) I just did not have the right tool for the job and simply used the table saw to cut away the material I needed. I was going to spend a hour or so filing it away to look better but then decided, WHY? lol, the table saw took a few more seconds to make the slits.


I cut this insert at 5" inch wide (127 mm) exactly, leaving about 1/8" free space all around, mainly because the plastic walls have these reinforced areas where the partitions slide down into. I had to take that into consideration or the MDF would not fit proper.




And here it is sitting on the plastic bottom base that will be glued to the panel.


And now for a few pics of the top cover in its current state. I have not yet cut out the 120mm hole for the fan, nor have I cut the holes for the Power or DVI as of yet. The actual electronics are still on their way according to Joshua at emaxeon. Once they arrive, then I can start with the standoff locations, the DVI hole location and the fan location, along with many of the cable slots I will certainly need to make.


Not yet finished with the air circulation holes, as I am still thinking about this. I drilled several different sizes on purpose to get and idea on if I want to cut slits from hole to hole, or if I just want to go with all equally sized holes. I will decide later.


I also have video of me cutting and drilling the top cover if interested.

Please let me know what you think so far. And if you have any ideas (or questions) to help me with my DIY custom Display build, I am all ears. I have never done a custom display before so I am learning and developing as I go.

STAY TUNED, as I have many more pics coming of the finished DVI PCB box, and the actual mounting of the panel to my desk.
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Well the PCB kit from emaxeon finally hit the states this Morning. Today is the 10th business day since shipping occurred, so it will take longer than UPS, DHL or FedEx would have. Wish I would have known that, I would have easily paid double just for one week less transit time. This is taking the same amount of time that all the Free shipping from China usually takes, even on $1 packages.

So, if your in the States use FedEx, DHL or UPS International service, the tracking number would have worked from day one and maybe half the ETA time.
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As soon as its in my hands I will continue with the PCB Box cutting, and the pcb standoff installation. Stay Tuned
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
OK, wow this Panel is hanging from my Desk MUCH nicer than I expected it would. I know it seems a little ghetto but it is working out quite nicely, and on materials I already have. Seems adjustable, no stand in my way which is a HUGE bonus, and the 550 cord hanging from 4 locations is about 2000 lbs in strength, which lol should be plenty strong. The only negative to doing this is the small 7/32" holes I had to drill into the upper shelf of the Desk (so what pfff). And Yes, unfortunately just one small touch and it takes 5 minutes for it to stop swinging back and forth, haha. (EDIT: I was wrong here, with the DVI cable attached it does NOT swing or move at all). As I suspected I will need to design a kick-stand from the back of the panel to the back of my desk, just something to both keep it from swinging and at the same time allow for a little bit of tilt adjustment.

Anyway, what do you think? Is this stupid or ingenious?


This is the steel rods from which it is hanging from. These are built into the metal frame about every 6.5" or so.
4 of these are located on the top of the panel, perfect to hang this from I think.


Close-ups of the 550 paracord. I used black cord because it kinda disappears into the background.

Left side rods of panel frame.

Right side rods of panel frame.



And this is a close-up of the adjustment side (right side of desk). I used a cord lock on the end (I have hundreds of these), and I took the extra cord length (about 18" or so) through a 5th hole on the very edge of the desk, just for added "cord traction", and so that it would hang similar to how window Curtains have a hanging cord on one end. Surprisingly, I put a lot of my body weight into the panel and it did not budge. VERY much did not expect it to work out that well, but it seems almost perfect.




Any ideas or comments are welcome. I just wanted to do a trial fit before I start attaching the PCB box to the back of the panel.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Well, today I have made a major edit to my PCB box plans. Instead of using a plastic base, and then attaching Laminate material on top of it, I am going to just attach the Laminate directly to the panel itself using Double-Sided Tape (DS Tape for short). I discovered over the weekend that my cuts to the Laminate material was so perfect that the PCB cover just fits over the top like a well sized glove. Why add so much extra work when it already fits together as desired? The nice part is the bottom of the Laminate material is also laminated with a smooth surface and thus the tape should stick to it perfectly. In fact Laminate flooring is designed to hold onto tapes and glues naturally. I may use this stuff as the base if I do decide to build a VESA for it down the road.

To the members who keep asking me about the PCB kit, no it has not arrived yet. Today is the 16th day since ordering (Oct 18th) and the 10th business day since tracking was provided on the 20th. So, if your in the States use either Fedex, UPS or dare I say it DHL. USPS Air Mail is a joke, and according to the USPS website does NOT exist. In fact, its taking longer then Cargo Ship shipping from China, and that is almost always free here. So, I simply can't figure out what we paid $20 S&H for, but it surely was not for Air Mail, which is what it says on the Order Form "USPS Air Mail". Live and learn...
rolleyes.gif
However, I am not worried about the time it is taking, so much as I am more worried why tracking never worked until it hit the States, which clearly suggests it had absolutely nothing to do with USPS Air Mail. This is why I recommend FedEx or UPS from here on out because I "think" you would get tracking results almost immediately.

I hope there is a return address on the box, because I am going to send a letter to that address asking why they shipped by Sea and not Air, lol. Then I will ask what is the fastest shipping, with daily tracking to the States, and then give that info to you guys.
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Quote:
Originally Posted by SigTauMatt View Post

Subbed. Fits well with my "hopes" of a new machine to go with my new desk.
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Yeah, fits well with my plans to not upgrade machines until a very long time, lol... Or when the industry finally introduces a must have product.

I'd like to mention again, these panels come with a metal frame and Edge-to-Edge glass. The entire Z1 Frame/Glass thing is super easy to remove for anyone who is wondering. There is a rubber seal O-Ring all the way around the screen that keeps the glass and screen protected from the elements, dust, smoke etc. That O-Ring is attached to the actual panel frame, so if you do decide to remove the metal frame to go bezeless, then you will need to contend with the rubber seal. That Seal appears to not be removable, not without extreme amounts of elbow grease and possible panel/frame damage. Since this is grade A+, I would not want to be messing with the frame as you could inadvertently introduce BLB. Leaving the panels frame as-is and painting over the rubber seal would be most wise. The seal is a flat rubber tape like stuff, very precise high quality for sure, but only about as thick as 3 layers of electrical tape would be, my guess anyway. Once you remove the Z1's frame/glass you also lose the metal rods for which to hang it from, and then will absolutely need to build a VESA mount for it.
 

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Great, now PICS!

Those Chinese sellers can't be trusted man, they lie about anything.

Anyways, can you post a picture of the box that the panel came with? Also, how much does it weigh(including the panel too).I can't find if you already answered this to me through pm
rolleyes.gif


Regarding the glass, I hope it's not similar to the tempered glass that comes on the Korean monitors because I've heard bad stuff them. I would just get rid of it and build myself a VESA worst case scenario.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zahix View Post

Great, now PICS!

Those Chinese sellers can't be trusted man, they lie about anything.

Anyways, can you post a picture of the box that the panel came with? Also, how much does it weigh(including the panel too).I can't find if you already answered this to me through pm
rolleyes.gif


Regarding the glass, I hope it's not similar to the tempered glass that comes on the Korean monitors because I've heard bad stuff them. I would just get rid of it and build myself a VESA worst case scenario.
Since I have never had the Korean tempered glass panels, I can not comment. But I would think glass is glass, no? It is glossy no matter how you look at it. But, I am going with beauty and ease of install, for now. Later on, IF the glossy bothers me I will remove it and go the VESA mount route also. I think the matte finish on the panel itself is a high quality Plasma type.

When I get the chance I will take the panel down and put it back into the box and take measurements, weights and pics for you. Right now the panel is installed and hanging.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ultra-m-a-n View Post

Oh man, I was waiting for this!

You shouldve mentioned this on the other thread! Regardless I am subbed.
Which "other" thread exactly? lol, and your most welcome.

I guess I should be doing VESA from the start, but I soooo like the idea of reclaiming desk space that I just kinda got stuck with the hanging idea... I can put my arm all the way under this and store things behind it easily without any stand in my way, and also not to mention my center desk speaker is now no longer blocked by the monitors stand. Win, win with hanging this thing in front of me, instead of standing it in front of me.
 

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I don't know about the HPZ1, but in general there is a difference between glass(tempered glass) and glossy where the first is glass layer on top of a Matte coated panel and the other is a single glossy layer only. So basically it is better to stick with Matte coat than adding glass over it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Yay, Overclocking PCB kit is here finally. Shipped via SendFromChina (SFC), then went into DHL hands, and then finally into USPS hands. 18 days exactly since ordering.

Amazingly I can't find my ESD wrist strap, and I refuse to touch it until I have one. So still no progress, sorry guys. Soon though...
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EDIT: Using the button PCB it comes with I have already identified the Power and Brightness circuits, so now I can build my own, which I already have really nice buttons for. May take me slightly longer to build my own setup though as I may just design a hand held setup, or something that installs directly into my desk. Well see...
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by }SkOrPn--' View Post

Which "other" thread exactly? lol, and your most welcome.
The x58 club!

I wonder if this goes well, if you can offer a DIY kit to people here on OCN, like they order the panel, and you do the PCB, and maybe a housing. Just a thought since you already run an eBay storefront..
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ultra-m-a-n View Post

The x58 club!

I wonder if this goes well, if you can offer a DIY kit to people here on OCN, like they order the panel, and you do the PCB, and maybe a housing. Just a thought since you already run an eBay storefront..
Do you mean a full kit with all the stuff in box for people to build their own Monitor? If so, I have been researching that for months now it seems but have not had any luck with sourcing the Overclocking kits myself. I tried contacting someone I know that has all the parts, but they speak Chinese or Korean, not even sure now, lol. I wouldn't mind buying off what Joshua has left at emaxeon, but it could all be had for cheaper I think.

Not sure how many panels are left, but there may be about 50 brand new ones still sitting in the warehouse. They would probably do a killer price break in bulk. lol
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Quote:
Originally Posted by derickwm View Post

Looking forward to this. That is a damn cheap 1440p panel! If I hadn't just picked up a 4k I might be tempted to do one similar.

Can't wait for more
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Yeah, that is what I said.

I had to email the seller and then call them just to verify that they were in fact for reals. However, they have been re-listing them all year long and have sold hundreds now and not one individual has complained. I spent some time going through his entire sellers history and everyone who has purchased one gave them perfect positive feedback. So, just that alone is enough to prove to me that its legit. The only problem is that there is no pixel policy and you only get 30 days to test it and make a claim. So, if it goes bad or develops a problem say at two or three months, your buying a new one. But really, how often does Grade A+ LG panels suddenly go bad in just a few months? If its a bad panel you will find out relatively quick, probably within hours or minutes of turning it on the first time. At least that is my hope, lol.

I've had mine since Sept 29th now and still do not know if it works... crossing all fingers and toes that it does
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