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JonoT

Fixing a Broken Gaming Monitor for CHEAP - DIY

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The panel is the easiest thing to replace.

Most of the time the panel is still good, but the problem is the motherboard.

For a mass production monitor, you may get lucky to get a used motherboard.

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Other then broken panels.
Some dead monitors simply have a blown capacitor or two in the power supply. Usually a quick and cheap fix, though.... Then the monitor is usually also a few years old, since the failure is usually heat related.

But, I think Alex has manged to figure out a good method of scoring a new monitor for relatively free, with very little risk.
Since it does make for an interesting video, it does give LTT a random extra monitor, and Alex literally being the first person to know about it can call bids on it really quickly.
Smart move I must say.

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You guys lucked out.

 

LG recently charged me $400 for an out of warranty job. While that price did include shipping both ways, it was still quite a sting, and the original price of the monitor was $1000.

 

Throwing away hardware for me isn't an option and buying a new monitor wasn't in my budget either. This monitor is also about 4 years old now, which I didn't think was old enough for it to quit working just yet - I would expect to get 6-10 years out of a high-end display.

 

But as Linus pointed out, sourcing a panel might not fix the issue, (bad luck if you actually pick up a worse one) and in the case of my repair needed replacement electronics that I would have not been able to find, much less perform the repair myself.

 

I guess the take away here is for manufacturers to NOT FOLLOW Apple's example of making expensive devices become throwaway items in 24 months. Rather, make stuff that can go beyond it's warranty at the minimum, make it to be repairable (better) or in the best case, just build it so that it goes on working even after it has become obsolete.

 

E-waste wasn't a problem in the 80's because in the 80's you were buying stuff that would last. I still have electronics from that decade that still runs and has never seen a screwdriver. That's' a far cry from the many solid state devices being sold today that become throwaways because of non replaceable batteries, or in the case of certain motherboards, a dead $2 chipset fan.

 

Throwing money at the problem and buying new replacement devices for things that break prematurely is not a sustainable solution for the consumer. Companies like Apple banking on that constant cash flow are gambling big time, except that one day they will lose.

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1 hour ago, Luscious said:

E-waste wasn't a problem in the 80's because in the 80's you were buying stuff that would last. I still have electronics from that decade that still runs and has never seen a screwdriver. That's' a far cry from the many solid state devices being sold today that become throwaways because of non replaceable batteries, or in the case of certain motherboards, a dead $2 chipset fan.

Manufacturers don't really have much marketing reason to put effort into long term stability/functioning of consumer products. Especially with product that are performance/feature wise obsolete after 2-4 years. Since the long term failure rate isn't going to effect sales, due to the very reason that by the time those issues start appearing, then the manufacturer long since stopped selling it and literally couldn't care less...

 

Is that a good thing? Not really. I generally look for longer then usual warranties. (A warranty is ideally speaking a period of time that failures due to the product and subsequent repairs should be covered by the manufacturer free of charge. So a longer then usual period indicates that the manufacturer is more confident in their quality. (Ie, if it is just the legally mandated 1-2 years, then is it any good?))

 

Then one can also take the bathtub curve into consideration: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bathtub_curve

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I once retrofitted JUST the LCD Glass Panel on a laptop to another laptop, the screen sizes wheren't 100% the same so I had to disassemble the LCD/Diffuser/Backlight assembly and swap JUST the actual LCD panel, but it worked and got that laptop going again.

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I just replace all LED strip of my 47" LG TV. (~USD15 on taobao)

 

a few cautions for anyone interested in fixing monitors:

you really want to make sure the parts are capable, 100% match, and the replacement parts arent cheap.

-the signal ribbons / cables need to be plug in very tight.

-you need to prepare alot space to place and disassemble .

you may need to take monitor apart, check compatibility parts, place order, etc, takes days before parts arrive... 

-the glass screen is really soft and fragile, it does have little flex but its very easily scratched on the inside, causing dead pixels.

-always get a friend/ helper during operation

- expect only 70% success rate...

 

 

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Bit of information in that vid that i hope people pick up on.

 

The panel itself, the bit that you look at , the bit that for the most part is what differentiates one monitor from another, isn't actually that expensive.

 

The majority of the cost for a Monitor 'new' comes from manufacturer margin (profit).

 

All those lights and visual design elements on the back , the stand etc, ... all just fluff to make it look more expensive, it adds little to the production cost, but allows marketing to crank up the price.

 

Take a look at any higher end monitor, $1000+ especially, and compare the panels to a lower end model. You will find the same issues present, such as poor uniformity, poor pixel response, poor viewing angles, BLB, IPS glow etc etc.  The 'quality' doesn't increase as the price does.

 

This is why LCD is such a con to consumers, and the sad part is , few consumers even realize it.


CPU: Intel i7 3930k w/OC & EK Supremacy EVO Block | Motherboard: Asus P9x79 Pro  | RAM: G.Skill 4x4 1866 CL9 | PSU: Seasonic Platinum 1000w | VDU: Panasonic 42" Plasma |

GPU: Gigabyte 1080ti Gaming OC w/OC & Barrow Block | Sound: Asus Xonar D2X - Z5500 -FiiO X3K DAP/DAC - ATH-M50S | Case: Phantek Enthoo Primo White |

Storage: Samsung 850 Pro 1TB SSD + Samsung 850 Evo 256GB SSD | Cooling: XSPC D5 Photon 270 Res & Pump | 2x XSPC AX240 White Rads | NexXxos Monsta 80x240 Rad P/P |

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58 minutes ago, super88 said:

And at the end they got a dead pixel :(

dead pixels/sub pixels are not uncommon, in fact they are almost guaranteed in every monitor panel.

 

Now whether you notice them or not is another matter.


CPU: Intel i7 3930k w/OC & EK Supremacy EVO Block | Motherboard: Asus P9x79 Pro  | RAM: G.Skill 4x4 1866 CL9 | PSU: Seasonic Platinum 1000w | VDU: Panasonic 42" Plasma |

GPU: Gigabyte 1080ti Gaming OC w/OC & Barrow Block | Sound: Asus Xonar D2X - Z5500 -FiiO X3K DAP/DAC - ATH-M50S | Case: Phantek Enthoo Primo White |

Storage: Samsung 850 Pro 1TB SSD + Samsung 850 Evo 256GB SSD | Cooling: XSPC D5 Photon 270 Res & Pump | 2x XSPC AX240 White Rads | NexXxos Monsta 80x240 Rad P/P |

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Is there a trick to using panelook.com? I tried searching a few different lg and acer models but couldn't get any results.

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Messing up an FPC cable isn't such a worry as Linus and Alex make it out to be. You count the pins and measure pin pitch and look up whether the cable is same-side or inverted (one connector with top pins and one bottom pins or both on the same side), measure the length that you need, and order a replacement, though it will take a while to arrive because nobody stocks them locally. They come in 10-pin increments as standard and monitors and cameras generally use standard ones, optical drives use custom cables. If you had to replace a custom one, you can just trim a standard one in width, just at the connector, with your sharpest scissors. But it's best not to damage it, just be careful with the connectors that the metallisation doesn't peel up from the tape substrate.

As to electronics, if the monitor is a good few years old, chances are, there's a company on Aliexpress or Taobao which refurbishes the boards. I think scalers should generally be pretty robust, and power supplies are easily rebuilt on your own too. You can generally diagnose easily what is wrong with the monitor, whether the backlight is not working, whether the panel is cracked (i'm sure they bought the monitor where it was obvious from the description that the panel is cracked), or whether the electronics has issues. You can tell a working monitor with no backlight by shining a strong flashlight into it and reading its OSD or no-signal message on powerup or the image you feed to it. Of course backlight could be an LED array fault or an electronics fault but that is just a few more diagnostic steps away. Boards are frequently shared between monitors of various manufacturers and you can often find a service manual for a different monitor that shares your innards.

I recently rebuilt an old monitor of my parents by rebuilding the power supply, disabling the high-voltage part of it that drove the CCFLs, branching off the control signal, and retrofitting a Chinese LED kit in place of CCFLs by stripping away all the glass layers and rebuilding the panel. The Chinese LED strips that i bought for $4 gave me quite a bit of trouble and needed a bit of repair themselves, and i wish in hindsight that i just stripped them and replaced all the LEDs with a less bluish more neutral colour and my solder job is obviously better than what they did at the factory, and i'm sure some LEDs failed due to flex in shipping which is why they needed to be repaired, but it works with some colour adjustment in the menu. It was a bit more work than is economical but they are very conservative and don't like it when things change.

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