100% Working repair for Gateway XHD3000 30" LCD monitor

Lateralus

More [H]uman than Human
Joined
Aug 7, 2004
Messages
15,179
Apparently he's been working on a huge amount of laptops and video cards with the famous nVidia issue which have pretty much the same problem as our Altera chip thing - the beginning use of lead-free ball solders in 2006/2007 as per International Heath Laws. He says the main problem with these things is not HEAT per say, but because of big temperature differences between on and off time of the monitor in our case, makes the shitty lead-free solder they used on these board and of course on the dreaded nVidia GPUs crack and so problems like this appear.
Seems that A LOT of electronics that were built in the 2006 - 2009 range and contain chips that operate at high-temps HAVE this issue - for example I had this issue on a Dell Precision Laptop which cost $3000+ , also there are TONS of Macbooks that use nVidia 8600GT and 9600GT GPUs that have this problem and the list goes on and on.
I wonder if this is the same issue that plagued the earlier revisions of the XBOX 360? I'm almost positive that it is.

C0rnholio said:
First order of business - DO NOT attempt any more candle, lighter, fire torch, oven or even heat-gun repairs if the board start to act up. It seems that because of the extensive heat that these methods imply, the board can BEND - even if by a little bit and any future re-ball attempt would be close to impossible and would probably mean the death of the board. In order to make a successful repair - the board needs to be PERFECTLY FLAT. Crap thing is - these boards are not being produced anymore so they will be very hard to come by from now on. I was very lucky to get mine fixed... or I would have had to start looking under rocks. I really don't dis-respect the people here that find conventional repair methods and so a lot of people successfully "repaired" their monitor. I've been doing the oven trick for 1 year with the GeForce card in my Dell - I think I "cooked" it about 15 times - but each time the fix was temporary and was needed more and more often until after the last one, it simply refused to start completely so I had to replace it all-together. Maybe I was unlucky with the oven fix on this board but I would really think twice about blowing up a board that's very hard to come by these days. I wouldn't want to risk bricking a monitor that would cost A LOT to be replaced by something even remotely similar.
To be fair, I don't think the oven method is touted as a permanent fix. When it was first discovered and widely talked about on this forum, I'm sure that was the hope initially. But as time went on and more people attempted this and posted their results, I think the general consensus is that it's, at best, a last ditch effort to buy some more time so that you can get some more life out of the product and not have to immediately replace it. How much time it buys you (if it even works at all) depends on a number of factors including the component being cooked, oven temperature, initial solder quality, etc.

All that being said, it's great to hear that yours is back in working order and I hope the repair gives you several more years of service out of the unit! :)
 

C0rnholio

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Jan 13, 2011
Messages
18
I can confirm that the soldering problem is also what caused the earlier revs of XBOX to screw up. This dude had A LOT of XBOX-es laying around with the same desoldering issue. Also some PS3s that develop the problem along with mainboards, video cards and of course A TON of laptops that needed re-soldering.
What a crap time for electronics the 06-09 period. Anything that runs hot and uses BGA soldering is prone for f*cking up. Looks like the things that were produced AFTER this period are not having that problem anymore.
I hope you guys find a convenient re-ball solution.
 

rtangwai

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
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Messages
1,369
To be fair, I don't think the oven method is touted as a permanent fix. When it was first discovered and widely talked about on this forum, I'm sure that was the hope initially. But as time went on and more people attempted this and posted their results, I think the general consensus is that it's, at best, a last ditch effort to buy some more time so that you can get some more life out of the product and not have to immediately replace it. How much time it buys you (if it even works at all) depends on a number of factors including the component being cooked, oven temperature, initial solder quality, etc.
The oven method (which I have used successfully on 3 monitors now) is strictly to get the board working again by getting rid of the microfractures in the lead-free solder. Early lead-free solder were brittle and cracked under the constant thermal changes. The most successful oven-baked "fixes" combined baking the board to get it working again with a heatsink on the problematic Altera chip to reduce the temperature differences. If the chip never gets hot again then solder doesn't see such wide temperature swings and never cracks again. This is why early lead-free solder didn't fail in every application, only those that had high thermals (GPUs, CPUs, etc.). It's not *PERFECT* - chances are the solder will crack again at some point, the Altera chip gets hot underneath at the solder pads no matter *HOW* big a heatsink and fan you rig on it. But like you said, it's mostly to wring as much life out of the monitor as possible before replacing.

Luckily for most of us the 27" monitors are coming down significantly in price if you are willing to go to eBay. Better still, some models come with DisplayPort which is necessary if you use Intel onboard graphics (the port on most is only single-link DVI) or going multimonitor on AMD and some nVidia cards. At $290CDN for DVI-D and $370CDN for DisplayPort it starts to become a lot more attractive than trying to keep the scaler boards working. The only drawback of course is that nobody knows if there are any hidden problems with the Korean 27" that won't come to light for years - in other words, history could very well repeat itself.
 

les_garten

Limp Gawd
Joined
Dec 12, 2007
Messages
326
I think one of the issues for reballing is trying to find enough for the reballer to think it's worth their time. One off usually won't do it.
 

les_garten

Limp Gawd
Joined
Dec 12, 2007
Messages
326
How many people would be interested in having their boards reballed with leaded solder if the repair were about $150?

I'm guessing cost here, I am looking into this. Waiting on a quote. I bought a new board about 6 months ago, but would be interested in reballing my old board with lead solder so it was right.

I may have someone to do these.
 

C0rnholio

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Jan 13, 2011
Messages
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There's always the matter of "image quality" if you consider going from the 305t to the Korean models. I haven't seen any of these Korean wonder-monitors that go around, ebay for dirt cheap. They look good on paper. However I am a photographer and I have seen the difference between a hi-end monitor such as the 305t and lower end monitors that sell in the stores today. This did not cost $2000 for nothing, and again, I am not saying anything bad about the Korean stuff but I doubt the image quality would be on par with a hi-end panel designed and manufactured by Samsung. As a comparsion, lower end IPS monitors ( LG, Dell ) look very noticeably worse than the 305t in terms of color reproduction and gray dynamic so I doubt the Korean ones would fare a whole lot better.
If the 305t would have been bricked, I was already planning on going for the Dell 2713HM to replace it although I still had my doubts that the image quality would be close to that of the 305s ( I have not seen it "in person" yet ) although the reviews have been very positive.
 

lachdanan

Limp Gawd
Joined
Nov 3, 2012
Messages
233
rtangwai, I see you are still helping people out here :) I just want to say that my lcd is still working great, and I am greatful for anyone's help. ilcibernetico's mod is quite sick. For now I am not much concerned about aesthetics :)
 

JEBONE

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Joined
Jul 27, 2013
Messages
1
Hi

I have a Samsung 305T which has horizontal lines across about half the screen. Baked Altera pcb board in the oven in the hope that it might work, unfortunately, I broke a connector on Altera pcb board when I reassembled the monitor. See the picture. Is there any way to fix the plug or fix a new cable or connector?




Regards
Jon
 

les_garten

Limp Gawd
Joined
Dec 12, 2007
Messages
326
Those connectors screw up easily for sure, bummer there.


I got a quote from a Reballer named retronix in GB.

The price is $100/board.

Is these anyone else interested in going in here to share the shipping?
 

snsgn

n00b
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May 30, 2012
Messages
4
Hi all,

I'm just here to give you thumbs up on this trick and recommend google searchers who come here to do just as I did.

Yesterday, 1 year after the lighter trick, I started getting green lines again. Flickering already occured one month ago, so I knew it was coming again. I did the lighter trick again and my 305T+ is working just as new.

I can not explain in words how thankful I am for people (technicians) on this forum and other forums who learn us about the inner workings etcetera. Neither can I explain in words how unthankful I am towards Samsung for such a bad service and short time of warranty and simply not acknowledging the problem.

Thank you HardForum! (and other forums with similar topics on the 305T+)

Cooling included:
 
Last edited:

axlrose27

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Mar 25, 2013
Messages
15
I have done the method of heating the altera chip with a heat gun. worked great for at least a few months. I'm probably due to make it happen again. Suddenly my screen has started flashing like a strobe line with vertical multicolored lines. I'm thinking that it's a problem with the altera again though it seems from the thread that it might be with the brown connectors? Anyone out there still?
 

snsgn

n00b
Joined
May 30, 2012
Messages
4
I have done the method of heating the altera chip with a heat gun. worked great for at least a few months. I'm probably due to make it happen again. Suddenly my screen has started flashing like a strobe line with vertical multicolored lines. I'm thinking that it's a problem with the altera again though it seems from the thread that it might be with the brown connectors? Anyone out there still?
When you have vertical lines on the whole display, it most likely wouldn't be the brown connectors. Through each connector, 1/4 of the picture is transfered to your panel. So when you failed to connect for example the 3rd connector properly, you'll see the 3rd part of the screen fail. So when you see the whole screen fail, that would mean that you didn't connect all of them properly. It's probably the Altera chip, in my point of view, mate.

I hope my explaination is clear. English is not my first language.

And are you sure you mean vertical, not horizontal?

Oh and by the way, my screen died permanently last week, after 2,5 years of lighter tricks :p. I'm going for those cheap 27" 2560x1440 screens from Korea. If anyone is interested. Search for Qnix, X-star, Catleap, Crossover, Achieva on ebay in the monitors section. I'm gonna choose Qnix, because they can overclock to 120hz and have no input lag and also got a PLS panel (Samsung's new IPS technology, it seems).
 

axlrose27

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Mar 25, 2013
Messages
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Yeah, they are vertical. I'm about to take it down again and bring it over to a friend's place tonight to use his heat gun. Now...what page were those fabulous directions on...:)
 

Entrix

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Joined
Dec 9, 2014
Messages
2
Hello,

I registered here in order to post a method of safely fixing the TCon of Samsung 305T plus which happens to have the same TCon board as Gateway XHD3000.
My monitor started to flicker, so I thought about an easy way to heat the Altera chip as is discussed in this topic.
My method is much faster and safer than all the methods described. I used a 40W light bulb to heat the chip, so the procedure goes like this:
- remove the back cover
- disconnect the 2 side cables
- disconnect only the flat cable from the TCon and leave the smaller one connected as it's very fragile
- then you can slightly pull the whole power supply assembly, so that you can uncover the chip
- while holding the power supply at an angle you can flip the cover of the Altera chip and leave it exposed
...................
Now we are ready to apply heat.
....................
- Get a desk lamp with a 40W incandescent light bulb.
- Think of a holder that can hold the lamp approximately 3-5mm away from the chip.
Tip: Get some big coins that are the same size as the chip and paint them black. Put some solder on them and measure the time that your lamp needs in order to melt the solder on the coin/s. I used 2 "silver" coins and my time was 10 minutes!
- Cut 4 hand size white paper pieces and place them on each side of the chip in order to make something like a simple mask leaving just the Altera chip exposed.
- Paint the top of the Altera chip with a black marker (important!!!)
- Set up the light bulb 3-5mm away and heat the chip for 12 minutes. I added 2 minutes to my measured time to make sure the solder melts correctly.
You can test the monitor right away by connecting the 3 flat cables we disconnected. It's realy fast and easy. I did that and saw that the monitor was fixed! yay!!!
- Clean the top of the chip
- Assemble your fixed monitor back together!

This method worked and my monitor is now working fine!

Advantages of this method:
- we don't need to remove the TCon board
- we don't need to disconnect the most delicate cables (brown cables and the smaller white cable)
- we can test the monitor while it's opened by simply plugging the 3 disconnected cables
- we apply the right amount of heat at the right spot without heating anything else
- we apply the heat without applying any force to the chip
- it's easy
- it WORKS!

Greetings from Bulgaria and excuse me if I made mistakes while writing. English is not my native language! :)
Enjoy!
 

jojo69

[H]F Junkie
Joined
Sep 13, 2009
Messages
10,498
Entrix,

Thank you, your English is very good and your method sounds promising.

The only refinement I might suggest is possibly using aluminum foil as the heat mask.
 

305Tguy

n00b
Joined
Mar 29, 2015
Messages
3
My Samsung 305t monitor was flickering again so I baked the logic board as I have been doing periodically. Something went wrong during the process this time. My screen now looks like this:



This is no longer the flickering problem. The bottom of the monitor is black and there is clearly a line across the screen. Any advise? Thank you.
 

les_garten

Limp Gawd
Joined
Dec 12, 2007
Messages
326
My Samsung 305t monitor was flickering again so I baked the logic board as I have been doing periodically. Something went wrong during the process this time. My screen now looks like this:



This is no longer the flickering problem. The bottom of the monitor is black and there is clearly a line across the screen. Any advise? Thank you.
1) Reheat
2) Get a new board
 

305Tguy

n00b
Joined
Mar 29, 2015
Messages
3
i was thinking maybe one of the connecters or ribbons got messed up? i tried reheating and reconnecting everything but no improvement.
 

les_garten

Limp Gawd
Joined
Dec 12, 2007
Messages
326
i was thinking maybe one of the connecters or ribbons got messed up? i tried reheating and reconnecting everything but no improvement.
If it's a ribbon I would think you would know it. The connectors are very fragile.
 

305Tguy

n00b
Joined
Mar 29, 2015
Messages
3
so what would cause the bottom the screen to be black?

i have been running 305t for 7 years and have dealt with flicker issues but have never seen the screen portioned off like this and part of the screen black.

thx
 

les_garten

Limp Gawd
Joined
Dec 12, 2007
Messages
326
so what would cause the bottom the screen to be black?

i have been running 305t for 7 years and have dealt with flicker issues but have never seen the screen portioned off like this and part of the screen black.

thx
I think you are over analyzing this.

It's the connectors or the Chip/Board again or a combo of those.

Most people don't specialize in artifact analysis :cool:

They just replace the broken piece or replace the whole monitor.

If this monitor had been designed well enough it would be a 20 year purchase. I still have CRT's from the 90's. Large SUN CRT's I just haven't parted with because they are still pulling their weight. I cuss them when I have to move them though...
 

crashnburn

Weaksauce
Joined
Nov 4, 2007
Messages
90
Entrix, I might have to try your method. Is it still working for you?

Did you do any additional modifications? like cooling fan, additional heat sink for heat release to prevent future issues etc?

Hello,

I registered here in order to post a method of safely fixing the TCon of Samsung 305T plus which happens to have the same TCon board as Gateway XHD3000.
My monitor started to flicker, so I thought about an easy way to heat the Altera chip as is discussed in this topic.
My method is much faster and safer than all the methods described. I used a 40W light bulb to heat the chip, so the procedure goes like this:
- remove the back cover
- disconnect the 2 side cables
- disconnect only the flat cable from the TCon and leave the smaller one connected as it's very fragile
- then you can slightly pull the whole power supply assembly, so that you can uncover the chip
- while holding the power supply at an angle you can flip the cover of the Altera chip and leave it exposed
...................
Now we are ready to apply heat.
....................
- Get a desk lamp with a 40W incandescent light bulb.
- Think of a holder that can hold the lamp approximately 3-5mm away from the chip.
Tip: Get some big coins that are the same size as the chip and paint them black. Put some solder on them and measure the time that your lamp needs in order to melt the solder on the coin/s. I used 2 "silver" coins and my time was 10 minutes!
- Cut 4 hand size white paper pieces and place them on each side of the chip in order to make something like a simple mask leaving just the Altera chip exposed.
- Paint the top of the Altera chip with a black marker (important!!!)
- Set up the light bulb 3-5mm away and heat the chip for 12 minutes. I added 2 minutes to my measured time to make sure the solder melts correctly.
You can test the monitor right away by connecting the 3 flat cables we disconnected. It's realy fast and easy. I did that and saw that the monitor was fixed! yay!!!
- Clean the top of the chip
- Assemble your fixed monitor back together!

This method worked and my monitor is now working fine!

Advantages of this method:
- we don't need to remove the TCon board
- we don't need to disconnect the most delicate cables (brown cables and the smaller white cable)
- we can test the monitor while it's opened by simply plugging the 3 disconnected cables
- we apply the right amount of heat at the right spot without heating anything else
- we apply the heat without applying any force to the chip
- it's easy
- it WORKS!

Greetings from Bulgaria and excuse me if I made mistakes while writing. English is not my native language! :)
Enjoy!
 

rtangwai

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Jul 26, 2007
Messages
1,369
Update:

2.5 years after baking my 305T+'s scaler it started flickering yesterday.

Took the monitor apart, confirmed no bad caps on the power supply.

Checked the cooling fan - bearings are shot, can't spin it at all.

Baked the scaler again (375 degrees for 8 minutes), let it cool for 8 hours, mounted it up - working again. Wired up a new USB fan and mounted it on the heatsink.

My 305T which I baked at the same time as the 305T+ is still going strong and I confirmed it's fan is fine.

My XHD3000 is showing a vertical line which goes away as the monitor warms up, which indicates to me that after 4 years it may need some baking.

Overall I'm amazed how long the oven trick lasts when you mount a proper heatsink and fan afterwards. I figured I need to bake it at least once a year but so far it appears that they may last long enough that when they finally die 4K will be the high-end choice and I'll be upgrading rather than just replacing.
 

crashnburn

Weaksauce
Joined
Nov 4, 2007
Messages
90
Update:

2.5 years after baking my 305T+'s scaler it started flickering yesterday.

Took the monitor apart, confirmed no bad caps on the power supply.

Checked the cooling fan - bearings are shot, can't spin it at all.

Baked the scaler again (375 degrees for 8 minutes), let it cool for 8 hours, mounted it up - working again. Wired up a new USB fan and mounted it on the heatsink.

My 305T which I baked at the same time as the 305T+ is still going strong and I confirmed it's fan is fine.

My XHD3000 is showing a vertical line which goes away as the monitor warms up, which indicates to me that after 4 years it may need some baking.

Overall I'm amazed how long the oven trick lasts when you mount a proper heatsink and fan afterwards. I figured I need to bake it at least once a year but so far it appears that they may last long enough that when they finally die 4K will be the high-end choice and I'll be upgrading rather than just replacing.
Looks like I will have to do it now. What kind of oven are you using? (PS: Where are you located again?)
 

crashnburn

Weaksauce
Joined
Nov 4, 2007
Messages
90
Electric oven - easier to control the temperature.

I am in Canada.
Oh! I only have a gas oven.

May I ask what kind of heat dissipation/ cooling modification had you done to the Monitor/ the board on the back side?

Or did you install it after reflow as it was originally?
 

rtangwai

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Jul 26, 2007
Messages
1,369
I keep the back of the monitor off (doesn't interfere with the VESA mounts).

I cut away the shielding and put a heatsink directly on the scaler chip with thermal tape, then aim a USB-powered 80mm fan from the side to cool it:


Untitled
by Robert Tang-wai, on Flickr

The offset fan means that if it fails it won't act as a heat trap (learned this decades ago working for HP). It is a 12V fan so driving it with the 5V USB means it is very quiet.
 

crashnburn

Weaksauce
Joined
Nov 4, 2007
Messages
90
Nice. Thanks.

I found a BGA Reflow / Rework shop, they can do a reflow easily, but they would need a BGA Stencil for the Altera Chip to do a proper rework.or they can do a reflow easily.

- Does anybody have any idea which/ what kind of Stencil might work with that IC?

- Can someone post pictures of the "BGA Side" of the Board?

If I get a Green light from the guy on the pictures, then I go to my parents and start opening up the XHD3000 (which is quite a pain).

Thanks. I'd appreciate if someone can do that.

PS: I googled a bit and found some stencils and chips on Ebay. Any idea what was the IC CHIP Model on the board?

http://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_odk....H0.Xbga+altera.TRS0&_nkw=bga+altera&_sacat=0
 

rtangwai

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Jul 26, 2007
Messages
1,369
Another update:

Same 305T+ blew the 100uf 50V capacitor on the internal power supply today.

Always knew it could go as I had not replaced it like I did on the 305T (thankfully the XHD3000 has an external PSU).

Of course I don't have any 100uf caps around and the supply shop closed half an hour before the cap blew :(

Interestingly enough it blew on the bottom, not the top. Make a loud CRACK when it blew, scaring the hell out of me as I thought the main power capacitor blew (it is a big one). The 305T had 2 caps blow the same way, from the bottom not the top. One of the 2 caps that blew on the 305T was the 100uf cap which is why I don't have any spares around. I'd stock up but there is only 1x 100uf cap in each power supply and I have only 2x 305T's.

I checked the other caps, they look fine but I may change at least some of them for safety. In my experience that isn't entirely necessary as the caps that go bad often are due to being under extra stress because other caps blew before it did - the more that blow the more will blow and faster. Replacing just the blown cap buys a fair bit of time and honestly these things are old enough and problematic enough that spending the time and money recapping the entire power supply seems a waste with affordable 4K monitors appearing, quite apart from the real risk of accidentally breaking the PSU permanently.
 

rtangwai

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Jul 26, 2007
Messages
1,369
Update 3:

Replace the cap, won't power up. I checked the fuses, they are fine.

Tried swapping around parts with a bad XHD3000 I have lying around, no joy.

I always knew this day would come, just wish it was about a year later as I had planned on getting a 4K monitor to pair with new video cards - I'm not that impressed with this year's crop so I was hoping to wait another generation. I could get a 4K monitor now but most of them are not compatible with the HD6950. I have considered getting another 30" monitor but that's pretty much throwing away money these days.

I still have the 305T and the XHD3000 although how long they will last is open for debate.

3x 30" was fun while it lasted!
 

les_garten

Limp Gawd
Joined
Dec 12, 2007
Messages
326
Update 3:

Replace the cap, won't power up. I checked the fuses, they are fine.

Tried swapping around parts with a bad XHD3000 I have lying around, no joy.

I always knew this day would come, just wish it was about a year later as I had planned on getting a 4K monitor to pair with new video cards - I'm not that impressed with this year's crop so I was hoping to wait another generation. I could get a 4K monitor now but most of them are not compatible with the HD6950. I have considered getting another 30" monitor but that's pretty much throwing away money these days.

I still have the 305T and the XHD3000 although how long they will last is open for debate.

3x 30" was fun while it lasted!
Mine is still working, I replaced the board with a new one some time back and don't use that monitor except occasionally now. Did buy a 4K Monoprice and it's not bad, 28" though. Just a thought. It has not given me any problems.
 

greenmage

n00b
Joined
Dec 25, 2015
Messages
1
I am so happy to have found this thread and have begun heating the board since i had the same issues on my EIZO.... sadly, i don't really know why but after reaching the right temperature on the board i pressed on the chip resulting in perfectly combining every solder joint there is.... so i'm now searching for a new plate to order and i tried every link provided in this thread.

Has anybody a reliable source for the LTM300M1C8LV3.2 plate to order? I'm searching for a supplier around 40$.

Thanks so much!
 

CanisMajor

n00b
Joined
Aug 8, 2016
Messages
3
Hello. Can anyone make HD photo of 15-pin connector that connects to altera or write colors of it. Thanks. (sorry for my eng. from Russia)
ltm300m1c8lv3-2-gateway-lj94-00993v-t-con_152.jpg
 

les_garten

Limp Gawd
Joined
Dec 12, 2007
Messages
326
I might have some pictures but not sure if it would be what you want. Can you explain/ share what you are trying to do? I'll look for pictures in the mean time.
I think he is trying to recover from a broken connector and wants to know which colors are where.
 

Train951

n00b
Joined
Aug 10, 2016
Messages
6
"to recover from a broken connector and wants to know which colors are where." yes. thank you.


Black -- Brown -- Red -- Orange -- Yellow -- Green -- Blue -- Purple -- Gray -- White -- Orange -- White with orange stripe -- White with red stripe -- White with green stripe -- White with black stripe




 

crashnburn

Weaksauce
Joined
Nov 4, 2007
Messages
90
So, given this thread is kind of back from the Dead, can someone point out which LCD Panel(s) were used inside the XHD3000. Someone said they could find me a way to drive it using a Custom Controller Board. Thoughts?
 

CanisMajor

n00b
Joined
Aug 8, 2016
Messages
3
Train 951, thank you!! Monitor is working now. See on video .

So, given this thread is kind of back from the Dead, can someone point out which LCD Panel(s) were used inside the XHD3000. Someone said they could find me a way to drive it using a Custom Controller Board. Thoughts?
I think, you dont need to use custom board. Ive been bought my new t-con on aliexpress about 2 months ago for 110 $. (sorry for my eng, from Russia)
 
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