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XES635 External USB LCD Modules

phatman81

New member
This is perfect for my setup since my machine is below my desk and i would not be able to see the display. having it external i can just keep it on my desk and also have the ability to move to another device if needed.

I was looking over the data sheets and cannot find the information i need... I see that it is stated the SCAB is not compatible due to size restrictions on the external device. I was wondering if there device was any different internally? My idea was using the SCAB cable you guys sell, to extend to where ever the external unit is. maybe take 2 headers (do you sell them seperately?), combine them as an interface port @ the back of the computer and another header to extend out to the back of the external device. (or even just opening the back and modding the case to that it makes a tight seal around it.)

I know some have said to use an external drive bay for mounting, but the XES635 is just perfect as it is.
is this mod possible?
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CF Tech

Administrator
In theory, what you want to do is possible, but in practice it would be messy. Here are a couple of roadblocks that come to mind:
  • The connection between the LCD and the SCAB has many lines, it would require a pretty thick cable with lots of terminations.
  • The XES635 case would need to have a hole milled (or dremeled) in the back to allow a connector to be plugged into H1, there is not room to fit the even the empty connector inside the case, much less the cable bend.
  • The termination used on the SCAB cable are very small, and quite difficult to make reliably by hand. You could do a mid-cable splice, but that is also kind of messy.
  • The signals between the module and the SCAB were never really intended to drive a long cable. You might run into reliability issues with a long cable.
As much as it would sound like a sales pitch, the best way would be to use a some other module inside the PC to control the fans, and use the unmodified XES635 on the desk. If money is not a problem, a second CFA-635 + SCAB + bracket, or a CFA-631 + SCAB, or for the lowest cost, you could do a CFA-633 and not even buy a bracket, just mount it inside the PC as a fan controller.

Also keep in mind that the motherboard fan control has come a long way in the last few years. It is often perfectly acceptable in many applications.
 

jc634

Administrator
My experiment with long SCAB cables, referance this post: https://forum.crystalfontz.com/showthread.php?t=5305 finally ended when I started having weird "surging" problems with the SCAB setup. The fans would surge from 0 to full RPM, which was quite alarming! I would reroute with a standard SCAB cable and everything worked quite well. I fiddled with the long cable several ideas and nothing improved the situation. It was weird that it worked for quite a while and then stopped working.

My current solution, as can be seen here: https://forum.crystalfontz.com/showthread.php?t=5726 is somewhat similar to yours. My workstation (not the WHS) is placed so that the CFA-635 I have mounted in the front bay is not easily viewable. My SCAB is attached to this 635. I load my screens onto an external CFA-634, including all the CFA-635 SCAB information.

You are correct in that the external modules gives a user more freedom to locate the computer where desired and still have the CF display located for easy viewing. The external CFA-635 is perfect for this application. The downside is that it does require 2 modules, if you want to make use of the CF fan controller.
 

phatman81

New member
i appreciate all the info, from both of you. it definately gives me a few more ideas to tinker with. I do like the idea of the 633 for the case though. I have a see through side on the case, which faces me at me desk. i may actually be able to mod the case so the display shows on that side,(and maybe make the buttons accessable through the plastic) which i think would be cool. You could look into the tower and see the stats all at the same time. The other idea i had was to make some sort of doc that could turn up/down on the top of the machine, so you could see if when you want to, but this idea may be more work than it is worth.

JC: after looking at your linked posts, i see that multiple units in a single machine is no problem. :D my question is does one software controll all the screens or do they all have seperate apllications associated to them? (so can one application refer to multiple boards?) i think it is yes from what you say, but just wanna make sure.

p.s. i love the idea of having an external display, by itself, to be able to monitor...
 
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phatman81

New member
wow, thats a nice piece of software. props to the creator. i dont think i have ever seen such a robust program for fan/temp monitoring/control. i recently bought a cheap automatic fan controller (like hours before i found this site). it hasnt even arrived at my house yet... i need to make some measurements, but i think that the cheap controller is either going back or being put in another machine. i am very syched about this product and love how straight forward everyone is on this forum. No BS, just the facts. (and some colorful commentary at times ;)) though the prices are 4x of what i paid for my cheapy controller, this stuff does 100x more, and most likely better in every aspect. I really have to get back into c++ coding since i see the possibilites are only limited by the programmers skill... which is basic atm. after i can get home and plot out some new ideas (working nights can be a pain), i'll be back to have some other ideas shot down:eek:... and then creatively modified to fit my situation:D... lol

But seriously, thanks for all the input again and i await to learn more in this, new to me, field of electronics.
 
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