I don’t really have a test bench per se (I just use my computer desk), but I now have a test bench monitor:
I was searching the KLOV.com forums for ideas on setting up a small test monitor, and found this thread. It explains how to hack a Sony PSOne 5″ LCD screen to work on RGB video signals. The thread was 3 years old, and mentioned that they were on sale for $13 at K-Mart! Well….that sale is long gone. I found one on eBay for $40-ish. I had to get a power adapter at Radio Shack too, but it was worth it.
I don’t feel like writing a tutorial on this, because I’m feeling exceptionally lazy. If you have any questions on how I did it let me know. I took the info from that KLOV thread and it was pretty simple.
Here are a few pics I took while working on it.
After following the instructions, I hooked it up and I thought it wasn’t working at all. Upon further inspection, it was showing an image but it was very dark. The backlight wasn’t turning on.
I searched Google like crazy and finally found the solution. I found this page that explains if you have a PAL (European) version of the display, the backlight won’t come on unless you give the LCD +5V. They explain how to do this on that page, and show it in the 4th pic down. You can see the mod I had to make here:
See the second white connector from the left on that circuit board? (say yes.) I had to take the first wire, cut it about 8 inches down, and then solder it to a tiny little pad on the circuit board. After doing that, it came right up! Now I can test boards while I’m working on them without having to run back and forth to their cabinets.
I’d like to take a moment to thank all the smart people that figured out how to do this.