Author Topic: Jurassic Park - LCD screen using DMD Extender  (Read 3291 times)

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Offline swinks

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Jurassic Park - LCD screen using DMD Extender
« on: September 12, 2013, 07:55:56 AM »
I saw this on Pinside and thought this is worthwhile listing as it is a great option for adding colour but especially machines like the SEGA jumbo screen replacement option

I figured I would go ahead and give this its own thread instead of keeping it buried in the JP Mods thread.

By using the DMD Extender sold by Dr Pinball (, I replaced my DMD in JP with an LCD. The LCD is a 15.4" with a resolution of 1920x1080. It is driven by a relatively cheap LCD controller purchased on eBay that takes inputs in the form of HDMI, VGA, DVI, and an optional header for Composite and some others. The DMD Extender utilizes the Rasberry Pi and can output the DMD signal to either HDMI or Composite.

Here are the parts involved and approximate associated costs:
-15.4" LCD Panel - about $50 from various eBay sources
-LCD Controller - about $30 to $50 from various eBay sources, but it has to be one that is compatible and hopefully has the correct connectors and wiring for your LCD.
-DMD Extender - about $100
-Raspberry Pi - cheapest ones are about $30 and should work fine. I happened to already have one.
-HDMI or Composite Cable - $5? I don't know. I had one on hand and haven't priced recently.

Total: About $235 at the high end, but you may be able to source some parts cheaper.

Just for some price comparisons:
A standard DMD from Marco Specialties is currently $250.
The cheapest LED DMD from XPin is the orange one at $250.
XPin's Red, Green, and Amber are $280.
XPin's Blue is $325.
A ColorDMD is $400, and not currently even an option for Data East games.

While you may be able to get a DMD replacement for cheaper than I've listed, it seems like for the most part a DMD Extender option is the cheapest and the most value for what it does. I don't own stock or anything, but I'm really liking the product so far and want to show my support for it. I especially like having the flexibility to source my own parts.

The LCD fits in Jurassic Park with a minimally invasive change to the DMD Panel. Along the back of the panel there is a lip that extends over where the DMD is installed. The LCD is much taller than the DMD so the lip has to be cut back in order for the LCD to be able to sit inside the DMD Panel. Otherwise you may be able to get it to work without doing this and have the LCD mounted further back, but there isn't a lot of wiggle room in my setup once the backbox is closed.

The stock DMD panel has a metal plate/bracket that sits behind the DMD and the DMD Controller board mounts to this. The LCD is just narrow enough to fit between the outer holes for this bracket, so if you take the spacer out, you can screw the bracket in over the LCD and it will secure it in place. You can then mount the DMD Controller board and the LCD controller board on the back. I also made one of the wiring opening on the plate a bit wider to allow room for the LCD wires which ended up being a bit off from where the DMD wires went through it before.

My DMD Panel was missing the clips that keep it secure when installed. I made some L brackets out of aluminum that I use to keep it in place. I can rotate my brackets towards the center for easy panel removal. I'm not sure how the stock clips work and how easy they would be with this LCD installation.

The DMD Extender gets 12v from the game itself. I didn't go so far as to power the LCD with the same 12v, and instead opted for a dedicated 12v power supply that currently plugs into the service outlet. I will end up wiring this into the AC line for the game so that it turns on/off with the power switch for the cabinet. It probably would work fine on the game's 12v line, but I just don't want to push it too hard when there's a relatively simple work-around.

The software with the DMD extender allows you to choose the position on the screen where the image needs to be displayed and a you can also bring the edges in or out as needed so that you can adjust it to where all dots are viewable from the DMD window. You can also choose the colors for each of the 4 shades of dots that are displayed on the DMD. With some trial and error I got a color scheme together that I think works very well in JP.

Since the LCD is bigger than the window and sits a bit further back than the DMD did, I used two layers of thick black insulation foam tape as a blocker around the edges of the window. I need to make some adjustments to it since, as you may see in the pictures, the bottom foam is coming up too far and blocking some of the dots.

Anyway, I'm loving it so far and I'm a supporter of the DMD Extender.


Offline swinks

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Re: Jurassic Park - LCD screen using DMD Extender
« Reply #1 on: September 12, 2013, 07:59:46 AM »
a few picks of the fitting and bits

and he also said this about the SEGA jumbo screen

It does work for those large displays. Check out the website:

He's got a video up for Maverick.

here is video of the Maverick with a lcd which looks like it still needs size adjusting

« Last Edit: September 12, 2013, 08:03:04 AM by swinks »

Offline pinnies4me

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Re: Jurassic Park - LCD screen using DMD Extender
« Reply #2 on: September 12, 2013, 10:39:42 AM »

What a great system to colorize the games ColorDMD aren't doing!  ^^^

I am especially interested in trying this for JP - the girls were playing JP and MB (which are side by side) last night, and I was thinking how good a colour DMD would be in JP if they ever extended them into the DE range - looks like a DIY job to get into!!  #*#
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