Broken Projector Mod/Fix

December 11, 2009 at 12:07 am 51 comments

The other day i got a Proxima Ultralight LS1 projector with a broken bulb for 20 dollars. After tearing it apart i found the bulb check control lines coming out of the ballast board. These lines check to see if there is a bulb in the projector. After bridging the +3.5v pin and the Return pin on the corresponding plug on the main control board, the projector thought there was a bulb in the unit. After Buying a 50w Mr16 halogen bulb (6 dollars) here from walmart, i built a custom bracket(see pic two).The bulb bracket was built out of a old cd drive case. The bulb runs of twelve volts. Using a old computer power supply (picture 4), i bridged the green wire and ground on the 20 pin atx connector(on the Power supply). This tricks the power supply into thinking a motherboard is connected to the power supply.  After connecting the bulb to the yellow and black pins on the standard 4-pin hard drive connector (picture 5)  on the power supply, it lit up the bulb. 50 watts isnt a lot, but it was still very bright.  The bracket connects to the cover of the Light Bulb port, which is a perfect spot to connect. The replacement bulb runs about 5 times cooler than the original, so no extra cooling is required. The only problem is brightness. Although this bulb was sufficient, seeing small details were difficult. I am eventually going to buy another bulb that is 100 watts. If anyone is going to follow this idea, i would strongly recommend a 100 watt bulb.

No images of it working, but i’ll try to post some tomorrow when i clean the dust of the internal lenses.

Working image at bottom!!!!!!

The Cable shown in this picture is the one i bridged. The cable goes between the Bulb PSU and the control board.

Talk to you all later.

jjdogg (Josh)

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51 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Paiclyncunuch  |  December 13, 2009 at 10:55 am

    Lots of people talk about this issue but you wrote down really true words.

    Reply
    • 2. Cosmic_blooper  |  December 22, 2009 at 8:20 pm

      Agreed with Paiclyncunuch-

      and thanks for sharing this, i was just looking around for this information the other day. I’m glad to know you’re not running into any additional heat-related problems with the new halogen.

      I really like the bracket…looks like some quickly cut job from my own shop.

      How does the color look with the new bulb?

      Reply
      • 3. jjdogg  |  December 22, 2009 at 11:45 pm

        Thanks. The metal i used was surprisingly easy to cut. I actually ended up using tin snips to cut out the rough shape, then bent it with a vise and pliers. Then smoothed the edges with a dremel. The bulb is held to the bracket with some aluminum tape. The tape is used for exhaust systems, so it can handle the heat of the bulb.

  • 4. Fix a projector on the cheap - Hack a Day  |  December 22, 2009 at 6:02 pm

    [...] sent in this nice writeup on how to revive a dead projector. he managed to pick one up for $20 that had a broken bulb. While the prices of bulbs have come down [...]

    Reply
  • 5. broken projector? use a normal halogen bulb - antima55  |  December 22, 2009 at 6:36 pm

    [...] the tech blog says: The other day i got a Proxima Ultralight LS1 projector with a broken bulb for 20 dollars. After tearing it apart i found the bulb check control lines coming out of the ballast board. These lines check to see if there is a bulb in the projector. After bridging the +3.5v pin and the Return pin on the corresponding plug on the main control board, the projector thought there was a bulb in the unit. After Buying a 50w Mr16 halogen bulb (6 dollars) here from walmart, i built a custom bracket(see pic two).The bulb bracket was built out of a old cd drive case. The bulb runs of twelve volts. Using a old computer power supply (picture 4), i bridged the green wire and ground on the 20 pin atx connector(on the Power supply). This tricks the power supply into thinking a motherboard is connected to the power supply. After connecting the bulb to the yellow and black pins on the standard 4-pin hard drive connector (picture 5) on the power supply, it lit up the bulb. 50 watts isnt a lot, but it was still very bright. The bracket connects to the cover of the Light Bulb port, which is a perfect spot to connect. The replacement bulb runs about 5 times cooler than the original, so no extra cooling is required. The only problem is brightness. Although this bulb was sufficient, seeing small details were difficult. I am eventually going to buy another bulb that is 100 watts. If anyone is going to follow this idea, i would strongly recommend a 100 watt bulb. Share/Bookmark [...]

    Reply
    • 6. John  |  August 5, 2013 at 11:13 am

      “After bridging the +3.5v pin and the Return pin on the corresponding plug on the main control board, the projector thought there was a bulb in the unit”

      Being that all 3 wires are white, can you tell me what 2 you bridged?

      Reply
      • 7. jjdogg  |  August 6, 2013 at 9:11 pm

        The wires were marked 3.5v, return, and ground. I bridged 3.5 and return

      • 8. John  |  August 13, 2013 at 11:26 am

        I Love you! I’m running a 100W LED @ 60W @ 1.5A @ 15,000K and I’m getting an amazing picture. I think it’s a little too bright though the LED says its 6000 Lumen I think I’m pushing 3,000L its bright enough to light my whole living room. Bright enough to watch in day light that’s for sure, and thank you for your assistance, great Projector to mod. I was able to replace the driver to an LED driver and now everything is function off the stock power supply.

      • 9. jjdogg  |  August 13, 2013 at 11:50 pm

        No problem. This was a nice projector for me for a while. The projector was lost probably 3 years ago so I haven’t messed with it for a while.

  • 10. kronflux  |  December 22, 2009 at 7:31 pm

    what I’d like to see is the projector modified to power the bulb on its own, without the help of an external power source.

    Reply
    • 11. jjdogg  |  December 22, 2009 at 11:16 pm

      Actully that is what i had planned to do, but the ballast in my projector was completely melted.

      Reply
  • 12. Mario  |  December 22, 2009 at 7:44 pm

    Love the idea. I wonder why they dont just use the halogan bulb in the first place. But if you go up to the 100w, will you have to cool it?

    Reply
    • 13. jjdogg  |  December 22, 2009 at 11:41 pm

      You may have to add extra cooling, but considering the original bulb has more wattage, you probably won’t need to add another fan. If I end up doing it, i might add another fan.

      Reply
  • 14. Illz  |  December 22, 2009 at 9:45 pm

    I’m waiting for a projector to arrive to try this out, very helpful. I want to try to fit in a CFL bulb to keep it cool bright and make it long lasting.

    Reply
    • 15. jjdogg  |  December 22, 2009 at 11:48 pm

      That is a great idea. The only problem is, CFLs usually don’t come in bulbs so you can direct the light. But CFLs would have extremely white color, which would produce accurate colors when projected.

      Reply
  • 16. Koray  |  December 22, 2009 at 10:00 pm

    Excellent, how about using an mains powered 100W halogen lamp? Like this one:

    http://www.alertelectrical.com/Lamps-And-Tubes/Tungsten-Halogen-Incl-Low-Voltage-And-GU10/PAR-Lamps-including-GU10/100w-PAR30-Halogen-lamp-ES-PAR30F.asp

    K.

    Reply
    • 17. jjdogg  |  December 22, 2009 at 11:39 pm

      The one you suggested is alot like the one i got, but cheaper. I got it from my local super store. 5 bucks. If you are seriously considering doing this, here is the bulb i would use.

      Reply
      • 18. Spork  |  December 23, 2009 at 5:32 am

        http://www.1000bulbs.com/23-Watt-PAR38-Compact-Fluorescent-Light-Bulbs/40505/

        I was thinking this bulb would work, assuming it fits in the projector. You could draw power off the main switch for 120v and buy a screw in mount. I think it would be pretty clean.

        Another option, assuming you’re up for the challenge, is to use a metal halide bulb. They sell PAR20 bulbs (2.48″ diameter) that put out 2000 lumens. Would make for a great projector bulb. They’re about $50 each and need a ballast, but it might be worth it considering the replacement bulbs are ~$300

  • 19. Illz  |  December 23, 2009 at 10:42 pm

    I got my projector today and have all the wiring down, it thinks it has a bulb now. For some godawful reason the projector is made so that there is only about a square cm wide hole where the light is supposed to go through. I don’t know if it would be best to put a second backwards reflector and a lens to refocus the light onto that small hole, or to try to get the original light closer to the hole itself.

    Reply
  • 20. aygun  |  December 24, 2009 at 9:04 am

    Goog job man ! Very nice !
    I have started a same project with an Benq 510MP video projector.
    I will replace the bulb with an 100W LED .
    The LED is like this

    http://tesladownunder.com/LEDs.htm#100%20W%20LED

    The only step where i’m stuck is the Lamp PSU .

    How do you hacked ?
    Can you tell us more details and some pictures please .

    I have opened the lamp psu and instead o 3 optocuplers i have only 2. Input and output.
    If the input is on ground with an 100 ohm resistor the projector strt for 1 minute after that the Temp and Lamp lights are turning on and the projector stops.
    If i put the input to high ( 5V ) nothing happens . The projector does not start.

    Thank you very much

    Reply
    • 21. jjdogg  |  December 24, 2009 at 6:34 pm

      Try looking on the main control board of the projector, there should be some wires going to the bulb psu. Try bridging those.

      Reply
      • 22. jjdogg  |  December 24, 2009 at 6:51 pm

        I uploaded some pictures of the inside of my projector. As you can notice the bulb PSU is on the top left side of my projector. There is a three prong plug going from the board to the PSU. I used trial and error to figure out which ones to bridge.

  • 23. aygun  |  December 25, 2009 at 8:11 am

    Thank you for the pictures but I found this :

    http://www.allinbox.com/modding.htm

    and also in this page is my projector

    http://www.allinbox.com/Mod_BENQ_MP510/Mod_BENQ_MP510.htm

    and here is my 100W LED

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/37946127@N05/sets/72157623061838278/

    I have managed to start the bulb and the projector but now after 1 min of running it goes in stand-by mode and the temperaure light goes red . The Power and Lamp lights are green but the Temp one goes red . I dont know where is located the temperature sensor.

    Thanks for everything

    Reply
  • 24. Tomas  |  December 27, 2009 at 10:52 am

    I have myself an hitachi projector, Doesent your projector check by current drain the HID light is on? Mine does three start attempts and then stops.

    Any ideas? Maybe its a simple LDR inside it, never tried adding an outside source of light, maybe thats the thing.

    Thanks!

    Reply
  • 25. Illz  |  January 5, 2010 at 6:06 am

    I did my projector today, put in a 2 prong type 100W halogen lightbulb inside the original lightbulb reflector, intact with the focusing lens in the bulb enclosure. I have to say I am suprised at how bad their reflector is, there is plenty of light leakage, and it does not look nearly as bright as this in a pitch black room, even with the extra wattage.

    Reply
  • 26. wade  |  February 21, 2010 at 2:53 am

    ive got a infocus lp335 with a blown bulb ive bypassed the thermal switch .this inturn connects to the door switch on the lamp cover the colour wheel spins as well as the cooling fans but i think ive missed somthing some where any ideas ive run it with a 240 volt mains powered 100watt Mr16 halogen bulb ive got light through the lens but no image wade

    Reply
  • 27. Mariano  |  March 8, 2010 at 12:10 am

    Thanks a lot, I’ll try this, since I have the same projector!

    Reply
  • 28. Mariano  |  March 9, 2010 at 7:37 pm

    Works like a charm! Thanks again.

    Reply
  • 29. Mariano  |  March 28, 2010 at 4:05 pm

    Well, it’s ok to fool projector to think it has a functional lamp inside. With my PJ the dichroic is plenty of bright, but the colors are too warm and reddish. I’ve tried too a 10w led set, the colors are alright, but not enough light, the projection is dim, and the PJ must be close to the prejection surface. I’ll try later a 20 or 30w high power led, wich I think will do the trick.

    Reply
  • 30. shaun  |  May 11, 2010 at 11:38 pm

    hi i really need some help i want to trick a phillips projector bsure sv1 lc 3131 into thinking its runing a bulb. i dont have a clue how to do if anyone could help me i would really appreciate it i have a serivce manual for it but im not a eletrical engeneir and dont understand anything lol. if you would like to lend me a had my email is shaunhayes56@hotmail.co.uk

    Reply
  • 31. smith  |  June 20, 2010 at 8:23 am

    I’ve just opened my own eStore ‘projector’ (http://projector.zlio.net) online with zlio, and I’d like to let you know about the service. It’s loads of fun, and it takes less than 5 minutes to create your own online store. But, most importantly, there are no logistics to deal with: Payment, product delivery and after-sale support are the sole responsibility of partnering ZLIO Internet merchants! All you need is a bit of imagination to select products for your store (from a catalog of over three million items from the Internet’s top merchants). And best of all – you get a commission every time your shop sells something (paid by the merchant, so your products aren’t any more expensive than they would be elsewhere).

    Reply
  • 32. h5360  |  June 21, 2010 at 2:39 am

    Thanks for posting this topic, i learn something from your blog. Thanks again for sharing

    Reply
  • 33. Fixing a Broken Projector « Keith McPherson  |  July 9, 2010 at 2:46 am

    [...] digging and was unable to find more than one solid source for fixing a broken projector. I found this guy’s blog post about it, and decided I would start from there. I started looking on ebay at broken projectors and [...]

    Reply
  • 34. nalar  |  July 27, 2010 at 8:16 am

    where to buy dead projector lamps? i would like to buy them

    Reply
    • 35. jjdogg  |  July 27, 2010 at 12:17 pm

      Broken Bulb, or broken projector. I’d check ebay for both. You probably cant find broken bulbs though. People throw them out when they go bad.

      Reply
  • 36. nalar  |  July 27, 2010 at 8:17 am

    where to buy dead projector bulbs

    Reply
  • 37. Adaon  |  August 13, 2011 at 10:08 pm

    Thanks a lot for your post and time. I have Infocus LP540. I’ve overcome bulb check control, so I only need a source of light :-). I’ve bought halogen bulb 240V/75W – GU10 (1000cd, 50°beam angle), but it doesn’t give enough brightness of screen even at night.
    Your bulb is 24°beam angle. Could it be my problem?
    I can buy bulb MR16 12V/50W 10°beam angle or 12V/71W 12°beam angle or 12V/71W 36°beam angle. Which one would you recommend to me? Thanks for answer.

    Reply
    • 38. jjdogg  |  August 13, 2011 at 10:38 pm

      Hmm, this was a long time ago before i was super intelligent. :) But, i didn’t notice any problem with my low angle bulb/reflector because most projector bulbs are around 25 degrees anyway. It really depends on your projector. Most projectors have a polarizer that focuses the light into a fairly small beam anyway. If you need any more help ill try my best
      Josh

      Reply
    • 39. Adaon  |  August 17, 2011 at 8:35 pm

      I thing my low brightness of screen is also because of my 240V bulb. Low voltage bulb have better light efficiency.
      I decided to buy bulb 12V/71W 12degrees. I’m going to order it in september (school starts) and then i’ll report my results:-).
      I’ve read that smaller beam angle shouldn’t be problem and projector should have polarizer as you wrote, jjdogg. But if anyone though that 12 degrees reflector is too small angle, please remind me. Look for results at the end of september;-).
      Adaon

      Reply
    • 40. Adaon  |  August 29, 2011 at 9:38 pm

      One more question :-) How did you figured out fix of IR glass/filter? Can U post detail photo of this? When I tested my 75W bulb, I put IR glass in front of bulb, but after 30minutes it cracked into 2 pieces. It wasn’t fixed firmly, just put between bulb and optics of projector. Distance between bulb and glass was about 0,5cm/0,2inch. Sorry, but i don’t know how to say better in english… ;-)

      Reply
  • 41. R. Mang  |  October 25, 2011 at 9:10 pm

    Hi, props on the mod. I have a pj similar to yours I think( proxima dp4100 dlp) bulb still works but pj shuts it off after a minute or two and I can restart it but it shuts off again and again til the ‘no lamp’ light comes on then pj shuts off totally. I decided I would mod a 50w led as the light source I see in your pics u shorted 2 wires but mine has 5 I see a white and clear wire in your pic I also have those but 3 more in mine. If I do trial and error and short the wrong wire what will be the consequences?

    Reply
    • 42. jjdogg  |  October 26, 2011 at 5:35 pm

      First off i dont think you can do alot of damage using trial and error, but use common sense, i.e. power(red) shouldn’t connect to ground(black). :) Try it out and tell me if you have any luck

      Josh

      Reply
      • 43. R. Mang  |  November 3, 2011 at 2:13 am

        Thanks, i got it going now, turns out I was looking at the wrong board and wires. A guy named electrodacus helped me out after I sent him some pics. So I’m tearing out the ballast and swapping the led driver in it’s place and wiring it in so it turns on with projector. Thanks again. U guys are lifesavers.

  • 44. neel  |  October 25, 2012 at 2:04 am

    hi,
    i have sanyo multimedia Pro X- III , it is identical yours projector, i want to use 30W bright white LED
    i am stuck on same issue of PSU bridging connection…
    can you please post picture or at least tell color or which two wire need to ( jumper / bridge ) ??
    i have 3 Wires ( white(pink doted) side by side / pink in middle)
    which of two need to bridge can you please share this INFO.

    thanks in advance

    Reply
  • 45. rithywho  |  December 16, 2012 at 4:32 am

    sorry I posted Here But I can’t find somewhere else to help me. I have TDP-P6, I can’t find the way to bypass the balast Lamp. I try to short 2 pin of the Optocoupler, but still doesn’t work. Please Help…

    Thanks in advance

    Reply
  • 46. neel  |  December 16, 2012 at 2:46 pm

    hi
    i am done with my issue. for my sanyo multimedia Pro X- III ,
    all 3 wires i bridge togather and things works for me perfect.
    but i have another problem in video card after few days of running
    it has no concern with lamp bye pass …but bcoz of age of projector..
    i give up that projector,probebly sale parts of it on e-bay . i got another 3M projector which is bit newer then old sanyo….and
    i successfully done with 3M now working on over head hanger, 30W high power LED etc…by end of week is plan to finished…

    anyway thanks for help and photo which gives me an idea…excellent blog and very useful to people

    Reply
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  • 50. John  |  August 5, 2013 at 11:18 am

    Hi, I am moding out the Proxima LS1 as well, can you tell me what 2 wires to bridge from the lamp driver to the board, all 3 are white with red markings. Do all 3 need to be bridged? I have already mounted a new LED driver and have mounted a 100W LED before i start splicing anyting id like to know if anyone can give let me know what 2 ables to bridge on the old driver. you have the cable covered up with electrical tape in Picture 9.

    thanks!

    Reply
  • 51. Johng259  |  June 18, 2014 at 6:31 pm

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