1st batch Premium Pandora - No display at all

Discussion in 'Support Area' started by Wiz, Apr 5, 2019.

  1. Wiz

    Wiz Still Fresh

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    Hello, dear Pandora community ! Or should I say Pyra now :), glad to see the passion going on, and also that it's almost ready for mass production and shipping, most probably in Two Monthsas always, am I right ? :D

    I come back here because my beloved Pandora doesn't display anything anymore.

    A bit of history :

    - Summer 2015 :
    Enjoying my Pandora from time to time, I started to notice that the screen sometimes displayed black colors as green instead.
    So I decided to order a spare LCD cable, just in case.
    Last time I played my pandora during this summer, I think it was by playing an MD game on TV with the TV out cable, which worked like a charm.
    But some time later, when I started the Pandora with no TV Out cable, it displayed nothing : I could see the Pandora boot properly from the LED indications, but the screen always seemed turned off.

    - Spring 2019, almost 4 years later :
    I finally take the time to look into this. :'( I miss playing my Pandora.
    Found back both my LCD cable and TV Out cable.
    Replaced the LCD cable : still absolutely nothing from the LCD screen when providing power to the PCB from the charger (not re-mounted in its case yet, just the PCB with LCD screen connected).
    Connected TV Out cable and tried to switch it on/off with FN-L keyboard hotkey : nothing on TV either ! :confused:
    Only the LEDs seem to show me booting activity, when my good old SD cards are inserted.

    What can I do ? Am I missing some other things I can do to figure out the problem ?
    Possibly other hotkeys, or keys to hold while booting to reset anything ?
    I have read several threads mentioning that the LCD cable can be difficult to insert properly on both ends, but I've re-done it several times now and I think I can see when it's properly connected.
    In any case, an LCD cable connection issue wouldn't explain the lack of TV out signal, would it ?

    So yeah, I'm a bit lost here, but I'd really love to revive this little beast. <3

    Please tell me we can save it. :$

    And sorry in advance if I've missed a similar existing thread !

    Kind regards,


    Wiz
     
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  2. TeDaDeS

    TeDaDeS Very Active Member

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    Hi Wiz,

    Sorry your Pandora is still broken. I had LCD issues to, it shifted colors but ED swapped it with a new cable and that fix it for my Pandora.
    The TV-out is disabled by default on my Pandora. If you didn't switch it on before it might also be still disabled on yours.
    So maybe it's still only the LCD cable itself that needs to be checked.
     
  3. ingoreis

    ingoreis Advanced Member

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    Hi Wiz..what you can Try is:
    -Download thelatest Pandora Fimware:
    https://www.openpandora.org/firmware/fullflash/SuperZaxxon176.zip
    -extract the File onto on empty SD Card(Fat32 formated)
    -connect your TV Out Cable
    and try to boot from SD Card

    A TV Out Picture should appear and you can install Pandora Fimrware with activated TV Out.

    this FN+L did not work for me too.

    And are you? Maybe i can help when its Germany. ;)
    I have some Spare Parts here.
     
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  4. levi

    levi Still fresh, damnit!

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    Hmm, yes, if I remember correctly tv-out is enabled by default on a full flash. The problem I had is the reflash menu doesn't appear on tv out as I recall. I think you're meant to boot the SD card with the r-button pressed, but I never managed to get that to work on my unit where I ended up ripping out the LCD connector after I made it short. IIRC I used a boot file that I got from some old image or other which got picked up by uboot and started the update automatically.

    It's a bit hazy now, and I had in my mind it was some binary file, maybe boot.scr, but that seems to have come from all of downloaded release zips, so it's not something I added. Maybe it's this autoboot.txt file:
     

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  5. docbroke

    docbroke Still Fresh

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  6. Elw3

    Elw3 ƐʍlƎ

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    Wasnt it just renaming the existing file "boot" to "autoboot"?
     
  7. levi

    levi Still fresh, damnit!

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    The OS releases I have archived don't have a boot.txt. They have a boot.scr, and that autoboot seems to direct the bootloader to that file.
     
  8. ingoreis

    ingoreis Advanced Member

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    oh how Complicated.

    You can boot blind from this SD with:

    -insert SD Card
    -power on and hold the L Shoulder Button for 2 Seconds
    -press down 2 Times(maybe 3 Times,try it)
    -And press a from the Gamebuttons(should be the right one)

    Then it should appear the Flash Process on your TV Out.

    Good Luck @Wiz
     
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2019
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  9. Wiz

    Wiz Still Fresh

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    Woah, thanks a lot for all the helpful answers ! :confused:

    @ingoreis :
    I got the latest firmware you linked and then I tried to find the good actions to get see the flash happen on my TV.
    I finally got it by holding R while booting, then 2 times down, and then B or X, I think I tried both (no idea which one worked exactly but according to the firmware's README, both should work).

    Now the Pandora was rebooting while I was writing this message and I finally got a new TV Out signal after a few long minutes, and I'm now following the set up wizard.

    No LCD display at any moment though, but just seeing my Pandora alive on TV makes me happy already ! :D

    Let's see ...
    OH ! Important information I guess : the touchscreen calibration kind of works !
    I could see the cross on TV and then randomly try to touch it on with the stylus on the LCD, and it responded properly by making progress in the calibration process until the end.
    So the LCD cable transports touchscreen feature signals, at least.
    Am I right to think this proves the LCD cable is properly inserted ?

    Anyway, let's continue this setup wizard ...

    OK, classic regional setup, 800MHz which should be stable, and then TV out activated by default, of course !

    Now I have the choice between several advanced setups : CPU, startup and Video.

    Let's see startup first :
    OK, Wifi and SSH login activated, no idea why exactly but just in case to have more debugging options for the moment.

    Video setup now :
    LCD Brightness : currenly value 35, tried to change it but it had no effect on the LCD's behaviour, still no display.
    Gamma settings didn't change anything either, I just made sure to select the default profile.
    Video filter left on default option.
    Screen blanking enabled, disabled and then enabled again, no idea what this does and no idea what was the initial selection.
    OK no other interesting options, finishing setup.

    Booting on XFCE4.

    Well, now I have something working on TV so we're making good progress !

    I'll just post this message now and look for any program which could help to maybe make some technical test of the LCD Cable and/or LCD itself.

    Please tell me if you see anything I can do to figure out the problem with the LCD now. In any case, thank you very much for your help guys ! :)


    EDIT 1 :
    Going through the settings now and I see the display settings which show only one screen, "Screen 1", which has the LCD's resolution (800x480) but refresh rate is ... 0Hz ! And no other possible option.
    Is this 0Hz value normal, or is this showing something is wrong here ?

    EDIT 2 :
    Currently downloading PND Manage in order to get LCD Tester application from the repo, but it looks like it only changes display content with no other more low-level checks so this might not be really useful.
    Is there any kind of commands I could run from terminal to check things about the LCD ?

    EDIT 3 :
    Ok yeah just tried LCD tester with solid fills of red, gren, blue, black and white, and nothing happened on the LCD. I could see the test on TV so yeah this PND is just changing display content with no low-level actions apparently.
     
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2019
  10. ingoreis

    ingoreis Advanced Member

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    I am happy that it helped.

    Another Idea:
    Maybe the LCD Backlight Coil is gone on your Board.

    Please shine with an strong Light into the Display and maybe you can see little Parts of the Picture.

    When that is happening with your LCD Cable is all fine and the Coil which is important for Backround Light is defective.

    In the Dragonboxshop you can send your Pandora there for repairing that Coil.

    I tried to replace that Coil by own but that Soldering is too difficulty for me.
    Because i have one Pandora Board with that Error here as Spare Part Board.
     
  11. ingoreis

    ingoreis Advanced Member

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  12. Wiz

    Wiz Still Fresh

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    You know what ? This is exactly it !

    When under a strong light, I just saw the display works and it's just the backlight which doesn't work.

    I feel so silly !

    I knew of that backlight problem, and I was convinced that I was already observing it properly, but no : a strong direct light really is necessary to see the colored pixels in absence of backlight.

    I really suck at soldering I must say, so I'll be glad to send this for a repair to ED ! :) By the way I'm from the middle of France ;) so yeah it's not so far away !

    So happy to know what to do now ! :D Thank you so much ingoreis !

    Now I'm wondering :
    Did the "black pixels getting green" thing I got 4 years ago was a sign for the coil starting to die, or was it related to the LCD cable which really needed to be replaced in that case ?

    Preparing a box for Dragonbox right now ! :D
     
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  13. ingoreis

    ingoreis Advanced Member

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    Okay.
    I am glad that i maged to Help you.
    My English is not the Best,but thats not that important here :)

    In a few Cases it is not only the Coil,maybe the Backlight on your Display is broken but do not worry here because
    EvilDragon will Check your Device.

    And another Thing is..
    ..EvilDragon do like Things like Haribo Bears..maybe you can send him little Surprise inside that Package :)

    (an very old Information about that Haribo Stuff and its a little Forum Members Tradition..hehe.)

    Grettings from Germany :)
     
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  14. docbroke

    docbroke Still Fresh

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  15. Wiz

    Wiz Still Fresh

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    Yes I did, docbroke, and I just didn't notice the dark image because I didn't light the LCD screen properly. So thanks for the suggestion, you were right to suggest that :)
     
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  16. TeDaDeS

    TeDaDeS Very Active Member

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    Good to here it's probably 'only' the coil.
     

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