I wish you could feel things through the internet!


EvilDragon

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Happy Easter everyone!

And as easter has a few free days where I have to neither work in the shop nor do some video stuff (my main job), I finally have the time to write up some news.

I had hoped to present you some nice pictures of a final assembled unit - but while the cases are on the way (finally!), they won't arrive until next week.
Ah well, but I still got some good news :)


1. The case

Let's start with the case. As mentioned above, the cases are now finally on the way to me, together with the sealing for the speakers.
I've posted some pictures that Form Action sent me a while ago already, but in case you missed them, here they are:

IMG_20170306_113300_1.jpg IMG_20170306_113307.jpg

Please keep in mind that these are pictures made with a mobile phone and a flash, that's why it looks really ugly and glossy. Don't worry, I'll make proper pictures once they have arrived here :)

Hopefully, they won't need any change anymore and will be the final ones.
I'll let you know once I received them :)


2. The keymat

I received the new keymats two days ago. And wow. This is the reason I wish that you could feel things over the internet!
It's SOOO much different to the previous versions! The new material and fixed coating has really made a difference.

C9NM56jXUAErdkE.jpg

This is a perfect example why not to rush things!

The keys are really light to press now. They're very easy to press down but have a full nice tactile feedback.
My wife thinks they're a bit TOO easy to push down, but I'm not sure of that - I've got the feeling this is just because we're all used to the harder Pandora keymat.
I've typed a bit with the Pyra and you get used to that pretty fast. I don't have any problems here - but maybe we could ship it around in a dummy case so others can test it as well :)
I'll make a post about that in the General section later.

Changing the pressure needed to push it down is something that can be changed without any mould change as that's just a change in the material mixture.
So we could even offer keymats with different strengths in the future so everyone can choose the one he likes best.
I'll still try to get another one with a bit more strength for testings, but these already are nice.

So all good with the keymat, ready for mass production?

Almost! The keymat is fine as is, nothing needs to be fixed anymore here.
But I've got a small minor gripe I'd like to address: The caps for the ABXY-buttons. They're a bit too small - which makes the buttons wiggle around a bit (especially now that the keymat is so easy to press).
That's just a minor change in the mold, can be done within an hour and as I got keymats WITHOUT these caps, I can even test that with 3D printing.

So I'm happy to say: Keymat is basically ready as well. Another step closer in getting the Pyra to you!


3. The PCBs

Nikolaus modified a PCB to have all fixes included zmatt found so far. zmatt already has the board but didn't have the time yet to look at it.
Don't forget he's a community member like most of you, he has a normal daytime job. He's not hired or paid by us, and we're really happy for every hour he can spend to help us.

Hopefully he'll find more time next week so we can confirm and implement these fixes - and hopefully he won't find anything else :)



4. The LCD Cables


The dummies of the new design is already on the way to me.
All I need to do the is confirm the physical parameters (length, etc.) and submit the final files including the traces.

These LCD Cables have a design I've not yet seen anywhere else which should make them a LOT more robust.
As you know, the cables need to be rolled through the hinge - and rolling the traces will always cause stress on them.
This happens on ANY system I know that uses these cables, Pandora, GPD XD, Nintendo DS. Some will last longer, but at some time, they'll die.

I changed the design of the cable so that the traces will NOT be rolled (I've posted about that in an earlier newspost).
What I did was making the traces run horizontally through the hinge - so the roll will not affect them.

That should make them hopefully last forever. Which is important for a device that's meant to be used for a long time due to its upgradibility.




So as a summary, what's the current status?
  • CPU Boards: All parts lying at GC, ready for mass production.
  • Mainboards: Testing the last findings, once fixed, boards will be ordered.
  • Displayboards: Ready for mass production
  • Displays: All lying around at GC, ready for mass production.
  • Keymats: Last change needed in the caps, apart from that: Ready for mass production
  • Case: Will receive the latest samples next week. Hopefully fine - and if yes: Ready for mass production
  • LCD Cables: Waiting for the dummy, then we submit the final files for sample production. After that: Ready for mass production.

Some other things we'll take care soon:

  • CE/FCC-Testing: We needed to have a final working prototype, so we can do that now.
  • Boxes: Boxes have been chosen long ago, we only need to work on the design and produce them.
  • Accessories (AC Adaptors, Carry cases, etc.): Will take a look at that as well.

So much for my first news post today.
I'll do another post tomorrow (not with news but surely other interesting things).
 

second exodous

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I also thought the Pandora's keys were stiff so I'm glad you're going with softer keys.

Good Job so far, have my finger crossed for the cases and LCD cables.

As far as a the keys if need be you can send any of the past samples with a working prototype for CD/FCC testing right? Keys/game buttons are the most important to me so I'd be happy if those can be tweaked up until production.

Also, was worried you were a bit of a masochist with 'feeling through the internet', I first thought of all the stuff that was said in the last update about the onboard memory and the SD speeds. . .
 

matzesu

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Great Progress, CPU Board Parts lying at Global Components means all Parts including Leiterbahn, Wiederstände, Elektronische Bauteile, Prozessor etc ??
Sorry for German, im not that good in technical English..
Thanks for the newspost, looking forward for the pictures on the final case..

One last question: what happen to the Transparent Case??
It would be pretty cool to have a First Batch Pre Pre Order EU4G4GB Edition whit the Serial Number 28 in my Case :)
 

fusion_power

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The keys are really light to press now. They're very easy to press down but have a full nice tactile feedback.
Are ABXY and D-Pad harder to press than the keyboard area? Because it may be good for gaming-controls to have a little bit more resistance. That part was fine on the Pandora, only the Keyboard was to stiff there imho.
The dummies of the new design is already on the way to me.
All I need to do the is confirm the physical parameters (length, etc.) and submit the final files including the traces.
You spent so much time with that cable, I bet you know every trace already by its name :D
 

levi

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Can you tell us how many prototype units have gone out? I guess you're still waiting for better cases to pack them in, so is it just you, niklaus and zmatt so far?

Also, you might not want to know, but the thread title made me think of teledildonics ;)
 

EvilDragon

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Can you tell us how many prototype units have gone out? I guess you're still waiting for better cases to pack them in, so is it just you, niklaus and zmatt so far?
Yep, exactly, and possible fixes we can do to them (like on the one we sent to Nikolaus)
I should receive a big batch of finished cases next week.
[doublepost=1492195229,1492195128][/doublepost]
Are ABXY and D-Pad harder to press than the keyboard area? Because it may be good for gaming-controls to have a little bit more resistance. That part was fine on the Pandora, only the Keyboard was to stiff there imho.
The DPad and ABXY always feel a bit stiffer, due to smaller design of the keyboard buttons, but yes, it's also possible to mix different materials (though a bit more complex in the production).
 

Xcl4m4t10n

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Great job as always team! @EvilDragon I have two little questions:

- Are you going to work on the package design? I would like to involve myself in this, could I try some sketches and send those to you?
- About the OS. Are you going to work on a dedicated theme? If yes, I would like to participate on it if not, is there any way to team up with someone and start working on a dedicated debian-pyra theme? I was thinking in something milimalistic or something like Tango theme.
 

EvilDragon

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Edit: Won't no roll on the cable mean more bend per unit of cable?
The cable IS being rolled - but normally, the traces are rolled in the same way. Not on my cable.

Here is a quick example of how it works:

lcdcable.jpg

This is the outline of the cable. The red lines are an example for ONE trace.
I also included the axis of where the cable is being rolled.
In the middle area, the traces are parallel to the axis - so they're not rolled.

The only have half a roll on both sides where the cable is - instead of 2 - 3 full rolls.

Additionally, as you can see, the traces double up at the thicker area of the cable. The traces are redundant - and they reconnect regularly.
So a trace can only fail, if BOTH traces fail at the same area.

Only at the one of the cable (where the LCD cable is thin), there's only one trace. But there's no roll or force at that area, nothing should go wrong there.

So basically, we have:

  • Redundant traces which reconnect regularly
  • Traces parallel to the roll axis to ensure there's as little stress as possible on them in the roll.
[doublepost=1492196698,1492196676][/doublepost]
Great job as always team! @EvilDragon I have two little questions:

- Are you going to work on the package design? I would like to involve myself in this, could I try some sketches and send those to you?
- About the OS. Are you going to work on a dedicated theme? If yes, I would like to participate on it if not, is there any way to team up with someone and start working on a dedicated debian-pyra theme? I was thinking in something milimalistic or something like Tango theme.
Yes, yes and yes to all of that :)
 

Grench

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Can you tell us how many prototype units have gone out? I guess you're still waiting for better cases to pack them in, so is it just you, niklaus and zmatt so far?
Yep, exactly, and possible fixes we can do to them (like on the one we sent to Nikolaus)
I should receive a big batch of finished cases next week.
Is the current plan to send paid prototypes out with modified versions of the existing boards or wait for the next board revision?
 

Christoph.Krn

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My wife thinks they're a bit TOO easy to push down, but I'm not sure of that - I've got the feeling this is just because we're all used to the harder Pandora keymat.
The Pandora keyboards always seemed much too stiff to me. Has key stiffness even been a point of consideration during the Pandora's development?

For a keyboard in a clamshell device, personally I would always prefer easy-to-press over hard-to-press anyway. Of course the keyboard keys mustn't get pushed down accidentally when holding the device or using the gamepad.

The cable IS being rolled - but normally, the traces are rolled in the same way. Not on my cable.
You should really make a video where you explain this and show the installation procedure!
 

EvilDragon

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The Pandora keyboards always seemed much too stiff to me. Has key stiffness even been a point of consideration during the Pandora's development?

For a keyboard in a clamshell device, personally I would always prefer easy-to-press over hard-to-press anyway. Of course the keyboard keys mustn't get pushed down accidentally when holding the device or using the gamepad.
That doesn't happen. :)
And yes, my wife even has a bit harder keymat on the Pandora than my own one (mines pretty soft already), and she prefers that one...

Honestly, I've never seen such an easy to press keymat before. You barely need any force, yet you can feel a clear tactile feedback :)

You should really make a video where you explain this and show the installation procedure!
Yes, once I got the dummy. That's planned :)
 
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