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Please help with CFAH1602A

Mindless

New member
First off, please remember that I'm not the brightest person on the planet, as you'll see if you keep reading. I ordered an LCD display, CFAH1602A-RGB-JP, without really reading into it. It looks like I'd have to do some soldering to get the display to work. There are no plugs on it. If someone could help me by telling me where to solder the 4 wires in a USB cable, or point me somewhere that has this info, I would really really appreciate it. Thanks for any help!
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spock

New member
Uh ow...

Mate, that's not USB or even serial LCD, what you bought is a traditional parallel LCD, where you have to connect it to the Parallel (aka LPT or printer) port! It's based on a HD4480 (compatible) controller. You need a nice schematic (accidentally, I have made one), so, here it is:
http://www.lcdstudio.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=297
Just note the location and polarity of the backlight pins (pins 15 and 16).
Then, you can try a wide variety of programs to drive it, one of which is CrystalControl, made by CrystalFontz, another one being LCDstudio (www.lcdstudio.com).
Enjoy!
 

Mindless

New member
I don't even see the type of cable I need on the crystalfontz site. Am I blind?

If I find an old printer cable lying around, once i get it soldered correctly, I should not have to worry about anything but the software correct? (i.e. the power will be taken care of?)

If that wont work, is there a way to get a complete working "package" for maybe less than $30?

Thanks again for the help.

EDIT: Also, In your diagram, what type of resistors are those (RES1 & RES2)? And, what is CAP1 and ZENER?
 
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spock

New member
Not quite...

Well, you don't see a ready cable in the CF site, because there isn't any! The policy of CrystalFontz is that parallel LCDs are meant only for embedded applications, and not connecting to a PC through the parallel port.
Also, you have to get the power from either some plug from inside your PC or an external 5Volt power supply, in which case you will have to connect the grounds.
A complete "package" for a parallel LCD, without the LCD, is something I haven't yet seen. However, someone else might have. My guess is you'll have to make everything yourself.
All resistors in my diagram, i.e. RES1, RES2 and POT1 will have to be calculated by you, given the current intensities for your specific LCD. The Zener is a special diode, its value too will have to be determined by the voltage and current your backlight is drawing. All these are included in your LCD's datasheet, given by CrystalFontz in the according page. Finally, the CAP1 is a capacitor, its value can be anything in the range of .1uF and can also be safely omitted.

Happy soldering !
 
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Mindless

New member
so as long as I calculate everything correctly, and solder everything right, it is still safe to use, even though it is not intended for PC use correct? Thank you for all the help.
 

spock

New member
Sure thing !

Of course it's safe! Don't worry about it ! Just, as a precaution, I would strongly advise for a multimeter with a beeping continuity checker. With it, check that everything is as it should and there are no short-circuits. And never forget the golden rule of electronics: check and double-check, and when you're done checking... check once more, before you connect!
Also, beware that all power plugs inside the PC bear both +5 and +12 Volts (red for 5, yellow for 12 while black is ground), so you'd better not connect the yellow wire anywhere!
One more thing: it's not intended for PC use, in CrystalFontz's mind. As far as I'm concerned, it's just fine! If you want proof, just visit my site (http://skagon.teamfraud.com), and see for yourself!
;)
 
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