Swapping screen in a laptop

fisle

Active Member
Hey guys!

My girlfriend managed to step on her netbook - eMachines em350 to be exact, and managed to break the screen. What a surprise :p

I bought her a new netbook, so here I am with half-functioning netbook. Now, as you probably know, the resolution on those things is hideous 1024x600. I was thinking of acquiring a 1920x1200 panel to replace it. Sounds good? Right.

I ran into couple of things:

  1. There aren't that many (cheap) 10.1" 1920x1200 panels
  2. The good ones are 50-pin connectors, but I need 40-pin
Does anyone have experience regarding these kind of things? I already managed to get the broken panel out properly, so I'm thinking I could do this with ease, with proper parts.

Could I use 50-pin to 40-pin converter to attach the screen? This is the converter I was looking for, and here is the panel I managed to find.

If I manage to pull this off, I will get a cheap SSD and have the ultimate portable coding machine! B)
 

pcan

New Member
Quote from the Intel Atom processor N400&N500 datasheet, volume 1:
 

The integrated graphics controller has two display ports: LVDS and RGB
— Integrated single LVDS channel support resolution up to 1280*800 or 1366*768
— Analog RGB display output up to resolution 1400x1050 @ 60Hz

On the Intel netbook reference architecture, the LCD panel is connected to the LVDS port. So your maximum resolution is 1366*768, the only way to connect a higher resolution display is trough external USB graphic card/adapter.

Also: the display mode list Bios-dependent. Most netbook BIOSes only list the resolution of the factory installed panel, 1024x600.
 

mikho

Not to be taken seriously, ever!
I woulnd't consider changing it to something else then a new from the same vendor. Trying to fix it yourself would probably end up more "expensive" then buying a complete new netbook.


By expensive I'm talking about your time and effort trying to find something that actually works.
 

fisle

Active Member
Quote from the Intel Atom processor N400&N500 datasheet, volume 1:

The integrated graphics controller has two display ports: LVDS and RGB


— Integrated single LVDS channel support resolution up to 1280*800 or 1366*768


— Analog RGB display output up to resolution 1400x1050 @ 60Hz

On the Intel netbook reference architecture, the LCD panel is connected to the LVDS port. So your maximum resolution is 1366*768, the only way to connect a higher resolution display is trough external USB graphic card/adapter.

Also: the display mode list Bios-dependent. Most netbook BIOSes only list the resolution of the factory installed panel, 1024x600.
Whaaaat? But n270 supports 1920x1080, how come newer goes step backwards?! Dang it. Maybe I could try the 1280x800 one..

That bios-dependent sounds really weird. Where did you find this info?

I woulnd't consider changing it to something else then a new from the same vendor. Trying to fix it yourself would probably end up more "expensive" then buying a complete new netbook.


By expensive I'm talking about your time and effort trying to find something that actually works.
Probably yeah, but it's a fun project to try to do something by yourself :) If it doesn't work, I could always get a RPi and try to hook that into it.

I like to fiddle around instead of buying new one. I have no need for netbook actually, just thought I could learn a thing or two.
 
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TheLinuxBug

New Member
fisle,

A lot of manufacturer will hard code a list of pci-e cards and displays that they want that model of machine to support.  They do this so they don't end up having to support a bunch of third party cards and displays on their machines (and to force you to buy their specific hardware upgrades from them directly).  That being said, at least for the pci-e card side, there are a few groups out there that work to hack the bios for laptops to remove these limitations, just search around for a modified bios for you particular model.  Please remember, however, that just because you apply a bios that will allow the new hardware, doesn't  mean it will be supported by your other system hardware.  You need to be sure the video chipset you are using, for example, would even support the higher resolution. 

Good luck!

Cheers!
 
Last edited by a moderator:

pcan

New Member
I found the BIOS restriction on screen resolution by actually trying to upgrade LCD panels, so I am pretty sure it's there, at least in some machines. You may have a better luck on a laptop with discrete graphics.
 

Magiobiwan

Insert Witty Statement Here
Verified Provider
You'd need to install an identical machine. Dell does the same thing with a lot of their laptops (Latitude ones esp.) with a BIOS/Hardware resolution lock.
 

fisle

Active Member
fisle,

A lot of manufacturer will hard code a list of pci-e cards and displays that they want that model of machine to support.  They do this so they don't end up having to support a bunch of third party cards and displays on their machines (and to force you to buy their specific hardware upgrades from them directly).  That being said, at least for the pci-e card side, there are a few groups out there that work to hack the bios for laptops to remove these limitations, just search around for a modified bios for you particular model.  Please remember, however, that just because you apply a bios that will allow the new hardware, doesn't  mean it will be supported by your other system hardware.  You need to be sure the video chipset you are using, for example, would even support the higher resolution. 

Good luck!

Cheers!
Very valuable info, thank you! Stupid vendors crushing my dreams. I thought the whole deal would be pretty basic but no. I shall research this a bit more then.

You'd need to install an identical machine. Dell does the same thing with a lot of their laptops (Latitude ones esp.) with a BIOS/Hardware resolution lock.
Yeah, except I would have wanted a higher res display, since those only come with more expensive laptops (MBP, ultrabooks..)

Bunch of bullshit if you ask me!
 

pcan

New Member
There is a reason why the netbooks are cheap == cheap parts
Hardware parts are marginally cheaper than a 15'' low-end notebook. Netbook price is low for marketing purposes, the platform is full of unneeded limitations. The awful 1024x600 screen resolution is a Microsoft thing: it is the maximum screen resolution allowed for the Windows xp ULCPC license. This was set because the minimum allowed screen resolution for Metro on Windows 8 is 1024x768 pixel, so you can't upgrade.

By the way, I also have a eMachines em350 netbook. A friend became excited by the price and bought it during a USA trip, then it quickly discovered the limitations. I have found a good use for it. The keyboard has a standard US layout, and I have a few VPSs from good but lazy providers that did not populate the keymap selector in SolusVM. If solusVM is set to the "default" keymap, many symbol keycodes of international keyboards are filtered out by the VNC server, and I cant'use a good random password. I'm almost sure that at least one of the above referenced well-known providers is reading this: yes, I am thinking at you. Please enable the keymap selector on SolusVM  ;)
 
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