Colorful week

EvilDragon

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The week ahead will hopefully be a colorful one.
Why? Find out in todays newspost :)

Let's start with...

1. The RAM

Upgrading to 4GB or RAM was not as simple as we had hoped to, but we're now ready to test it.

What was the problem? Well, the main problem was the rare use.
The same manufacturer offering the 512MB RAM chips we use (four of them make 2GB) also offers 1GB versions, which should basically work out of the box on our current CPU board.
However, as they are not requested that often, the price for them quadruples - so 4 times the price for double the RAM.

It would be possible, but not my favourite solution.

A second solution would be to use Samsung RAM chips. They have a neat 4GB solutions using dual-channel 2GB chips.
Those require additional wiring to the SoC, so we thought at first we'd need a new CPU board for those... but then Nikolaus found out that he actually DID that wiring just in case (he just forgot about it, as that was over a year ago).

That means: We've requested samples of chips for both solutions and will put them on a current CPU board as a test.
We will also check for idle power usage, as there might be quite some differences as well.

So yep, 4GB will happen, but I hope this little information shows to you that it's not just a simple plug and play replacement as it is on a PC.


2. The keymat

The keymat company has done some accurate testings to make sure the keymat will work as good as possible.
There is special test equipment for stuff like that available, here is what a sample result looks like:

keytest.jpg

They also have a Pandora keymat as comparison, so we can make sure the DPad works as good :)
Test results have shown that the pressure point of the Pandora keymat actually was as good as it could get, based on the physical limitations (button size, etc.)
Still, some improvements can be made with the Pyra keymat like lowering the distance from the carbon pad to the PCB to get a smaller travel distance as well as using a softer material so it needs less force.

We decided to lower the carbon pad / PCB distance by 0,1mm. The moulds are already being adjusted, we can expect the (hopefully :)) final samples in a few weeks.

The samples will come in different material stiffness so we can choose the best one.



3. The Touchscreen

As you know, I wasn't too happy with the touchscreen, as it added some grainy colors (especially in bright areas).
Funny enough, not everyone even saw these (so it depends on how sensitive you react to them), but it's still something I wanted to work on.

I'm now 100% positive that the grainyness is a result of a matted touchscreen combined with a display with high ppi.
The GPD XD has a matted protective film included in the package, and if you put that onto the GPD XDs display, you can also see these grainy colors (although less visible with our current touchscreens).

So I can see two different solutions:

1. Use a matted touchscreen with grain that's fine enough to be usable with high ppi
2. Use a non-matted touchscreen with various other anti-glare effects applied so that it doesn't turn out to be a mirror.

Two companies are now working on this. The company that provided the touchscreen for the Pandora and another partner of BOE directly.


4. The cases

Now it's time for the colorful news:

According to my contact in Greece, 20 prototype sets of the cases should have shipped last Friday, so they should arrive sometime within this week.

These should hopefully have all tweaks included (so almost if not already final versions) and they should come in the various colors I've chosen in January.

As mentioned: We'll use black (or something dark) as main color, but I'll also make pictures and let you all decide on a possible second color!

The metal plate for the logo is also finished, so let's see how this will all look like combined together.
 

vcoleiro1

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Looking forward to seeing all the different colors.

ED, can I ask how the SW side (OS/firmware/drivers etc) is going, we hardly hear much of that side of things
 
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EvilDragon

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Looking forward to seeing all the different colors.

ED, can I ask how the SW side (OS/firmware etc) is going, we hardly hear much of that side of things
The low-level stuff (drivers, etc.) is being worked on by Nikolaus while he does the low-level tests of the hardware (otherwise he couldn't test it).
The OS itself is basically finished, as it's a standard debian. Our own additions are taken care of by aTc, he assembles the OS with stuff by other developers (i.e. slaeshjags DBP system).
Tweaks, 3D drivers, etc. cannot be done before the devs have their prototypes and prototypes can't be shipped without the cases and as you just read the cases are not here yet :)
 

Djoga'Ro

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1) Prepared for all eventualities. Nice one, Nikolaus.
2) Hopefully there will be some tactile feedback left. ?
3) If anyone cares, I'd prefer a fine grain.
4) When taking the pictures, could you please take pictures under different light sources for each colour. You know that phenomenon, when you find some shirt in a colour you really like, but when you leave the shop being out under the sun you ask yourself, where's that shitty colour coming from?

Thanks for the news, ED. Nice to know, what's been going on. And I like what's been going on.
 

matzesu

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Thanks for the News, hopefully the Samsung Ram also needs a bit less Batteriepower..
Nice to hear that the traces also were prepared..
I was fine whit the Pandora Keyboard, so Pyra Keyboard should be fine too..

Im looking forward for the new prototyph Cases, and i hope the Shoulderbuttons also work great..
 

Caine

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Thanks for always being honest and transparent about what is happening. One can learn a lot from all those posts of yours ED.

Sounds like some fundamental choices are coming up. Looking forward to seeing and hearing about the details.

Keep up the great work!
 

iArnold

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So my post of cancelling the 2 GB orders was a bit premature. A slight chance left that all orders will have to be downgraded to 2 GB ;-P

Great news again ED!! Thank you very much. Your posts make this project!!
 

AnimatedFreak

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Lovely update ED
I would personally prefer a non-matted touchscreen rater than one with grain. But that's just me, I know that a lot of people here really want a matted screen.
 

comradekingu

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Is it possible to have 4x samsung 2GB for 8GB total?

Can the anti-glare coating be removed on the current touchscreens? Ive removed it on my dell-screen just adding wet paper for a long while, then taking it off and carefully wiping down the rest of the glue.

Hoping no touchscreen is an option. Or just shipping one that can be easily removed.
 
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Wally

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Is it possible to have 4x samsung 2GB for 8GB total?

Can the anti-glare coating be removed on the current touchscreens? Ive removed it on my dell-screen just adding wet paper for a long while, then taking it off and carefully wiping down the rest of the glue.

Hoping no touchscreen is an option. Or just shipping one that can be easily removed.
Wow you really do like complicating matters don't you? :p
 
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