Damaged DMD

So, at our district we have a LOT of projectors.  1 per class room, to be specific.  1 projector and 1 smart board per class room in most class rooms.  It’s an amazing sight.

However, as a direct result of the large number of projectors, we also have a lot of projectors that kick the bucket.

The Dell 2400mp projectors are rock solid.  They last for years and years and years.  When they do kick the bucket, it’s because they have a bad color wheel.  This is an $80 to $100 part, easy to replace and easy to acquire.

The other projectors we have are Dell 42×0 projectors.  They are the worst pieces of junk we have ever worked with.  When they kick the bucket (and boy howdy do they do it often) it’s because of a bad DMD.  If you don’t know what a DMD is let me explain.  DMD stands for Digital Mirror Display.  It is an array of thousands of tiny mirrors.  Each mirror is controlled separately. As a result, individual failures result in pixelation and spotting on the projector.  This ruins the projector image.  The replacement part is $250 to $300.  It is also not easy to replace.  This makes us sad.

What makes us smile though is just how damn pretty the damn thing is.  Pictures:

2013-10-04 15.14.42 2013-10-04 15.14.50

You can actually see the pixelation on the screen.  You can also see the Dell logo in the center of it, from when we turned off the power while it was still displaying the image.

It’s an awesome little device.  You can see each individual mirror.  The image might not do it justice (phone cam) but trust me.  It’s cool.


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