Trying out a new PinLED display

I returned the faulty display today on the understanding that I would get my old (original) display back, repaired. I am now waiting and hoping the seller is good to his word….Having taken the plasma board out, I built in my newly acquired PinLED LED Based display. Connecting up this board was easy enough with the included cable (and instructions from PinLED’s web-site) and when I switched the pinball on, it looked very good. And the fact that this board was connected to the low voltage (9V) supply meant there wasn’t the normal loud hum eminating from the speakers as with a normal plasma display.

However, despite my first good impressions with this board, it didn’t take me long to notice that the rows and columns weren’t straight. On closer inspection, it turns out that the 128 x 32 display is made up of 16 off 16 pixel by 16 pixel LED modules, and these modules weren’t aligned, meaning that the lines and columns of the display were jagged at the module joints.

So I removed the display to get at the individual modules and embarked on trying to line each module up with its neighbour. To do this, I started from the lower left module and inserted the adjacent module noticing how they aligned. I then took this second module out and inserted it into another area of the board so that there was plenty of room around the module in all directions. I also only inserted the pins just enough, so that they were not fully inserted into the sockets but were just being held by the socket tips. This then gave me the necessary leverage to move the entire module body so that the legs would be bent in the necessary direction whilst ensuring the legs remained aligned. Having performed this bending, it was then just a case of re-inserting it in its original location to see how well it lined up with the other display, repeating the whole process where necessary.

This “alignment” process wasn’t easy and took its time, but the result at the end of the day was worth it, with the display only showing slight mis-alignment.

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