Tip & How-To about Computers & Internet
This tip is for the typical PC tech with a shop full of dead laptops and monitors, looking to make an extra Monitor for bench testing malfunctioning PC's. Maybe you're a tinkerer and just have some spare parts laying around, and want to make something cool and easy. Either way, this tip is a fun way to make old dead parts work for you, rather than sitting in a corner gathering dust.
Replacing a Laptop screen is pretty easy if you take it slow.
LCD Monitor screens are actually easy to replace too, if you are careful not to crack anything getting one out and in again.
This tip doesn't address any of the typical replacement methods.
What this does is show you how to use a laptop screen in a standard Desktop LCD monitor.
Having already disassembled your Desktop monitor, and determining that one or both of your backlights is dead, you will most likely begin searching for sources of a new one. Before you do that, try testing both backlights in the dead monitor screen first by hooking them, one at a time to an inverter in a working laptop to verify that both are dead.
Most of the time, you will discover that only one light is dead, and this is where the fun begins.
At this point, you have a few choices to make.
1. Extract a working backlight from a cracked LCD, we all have a few of those lying around somewhere in just about any PC tech area.
2. With the extracted backlight in hand and the old LCD screen still attached to the monitors electronics, remove either of the sets of wires going to one of your backlights, leaving one still attached.
3. Now you can attach the light you extracted to the empty socket your original screens light attached to, while leaving the other one still attached.
4, Now, turn on the monitor and wait for the extracted backlight to come on, if it doesn't switch it with the other light socket plugged to your screen, and plug the opposite light wire back in.
This will do 2 things for you. First, it will be a quick test of your inverter, and second it will verify that you do or don't have at least one working backlight still functioning in your monitor.
Remember that with most LCD monitors, just one backlight can provide enough illumination for your screen to show a very crisp picture.
The problem appears though, when we decide that our existing LCD is dead because we dont see it light up.
The solution for this is to simply disconnect the dead light wire from the existing inverter plug leading to the LCD screen, then replacing that with a working light from the cracked screen without disassembling the LCD screen itself. If you did everything right, your old dead screen will be working as it should. Be sure you swap the backlight connecting wires so that your Bright/Dim controls work as they did before.
You see, most dual light inverters work the same as a standard twin tube household flourescent light. When one goes out, they both eventually stop working. So, adding that second light completes the circuit, then swapping light socket connectors turns your backup light tube into the primary light, instead of the secondary.
Now, if THAT trick didn't work, you can move on to the Laptop LCD trick, which is pretty much what you did before, except that the Laptop LCD usually only has 1 light tube. So for this to work, you can complete the lighting circuit by simply adding your spare backlight tube to the second open backlight connector, then installing the LCD to your monitor.
Many of these Laptop LCD screens are the same height and width as comparable Desktop screens, but they are also thinner, and will have to be glued or taped to the frame from the inside. Everything else connects exactly as the original screen, but may need to have wire added to the Laptop backlight wire so it reaches the power source.
I figured this tip was worth posting, since I just did this trick with a 15" polaroid HDTV/HDMI/HiDef Television/Monitor combo.
The model I have died a few months after it was bought new from Walmart, and the customer just didn't feel like paying $129 for a new screen.
Being the packrat I am, I just couldn't bear throwing it away, figuring that some day I would find a matching screen. As you can see, I got tired of waiting. The pictures of my project are below.
That bright line of light isn't the flash from my Camera, it's the flourescent light tube from a broken LCD screen placed on top of the steel housing.
The incidental effect of that light is that my back wall is a nice nitelite, and hooking up new components is a lot easier. Yes I could have blacked it out, but I think I like the added light behind the TV.
I hope this Tip comes in handy for you.
Posted by Bob Sloan on
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