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An AFFS LCD panel into the Elitebook 2530p Laptop

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Hi there,

This is my first post. I own a 2530p laptop since 2009. This is my "swiss army knife" computer. I use it every days at and off work.

Since the begining, I'm bored with the poor quality of the stock screen. Recently, I decided to put a new one... and it is now almost working.

Initially, I started this thread on NBR. I also was interested by the mod bioses proposed by Nando. Being unable to download it, and when I saw all that ban story, I decided to move everything here. So, let's continue here.

Since none of the stock panels are very interesting, this modding will not be as simple as just a plug and play replacement. I spent a lot of time to understand the differents panels and options that come with the 2530p. I came to understand that there are basically four different panel assemblies. For each assembly, a different LCD cable can be bought. These are :
PN conn. type Webcam
DC02000LZ00 20 no
DC02000JM00 20 yes
DC02000WE00 40 no
DC02000WF00 40 yes


All the 20pins panels have an inverter outside the panel. The 40pins seems to be dedicated to the LED based LCD panel. I found that the following panels can be encountered inside 2530p laptops (+ maybe others) :
manufacturer ref. viewing angles luminance contrast ratio con. type
Samsung LTN121W3-L01 45/45/15/30 220 cd/m² 300:1 20 pins + 7pins
AUO B121EW07 40/40/20/40 200 cd/m² 400:1 20 pins + 7pins
Toshiba LTD121EW7V 30/30/10/20 200 cd/m² 500:1 20 pins + 7pins
AUO B121EW09 V2 30/30/10/20 200 cd/m² 500:1 40 pins
The last one seems to be the only 40pins LCD panel that I found to be sold with some 2530p. Panel names on this table are linked to their respective datasheet. The good new is that the interface connector type and pinout is always fully described ! I think the best candidate is the AFFS Hydis HV121WX5-110
Hydis HV121WX5-110 80/80/80/80 220 cd/m² 500:1 40 pins
From the datasheet, this screen seems to be a pretty good improvement over stock panels and can be found for less than 40€. Usually, it comes from HP 2170p and 2730p laptops. The hydis HV121WX6-XXX is also compatible (it is better I think now). It is found inside Lenovo X200T but is really too expensive.

There is also this one :
ChiMei N121I7-L01 85/85/85/85 220 cd/m² 800:1 40 pins
This screen is also found in HP 2710p and 2730p laptops. It may be a much better replacement (MVA type, better contrast), but it seems that the inverter is not built-in (or it is an error inside datasheet since it is a 40pins connector with LED backlight). This one is much harder to find and much more expensive too. Its 40pins connector is the same than hydis one but pinout is slightly different. The S-PVA Samsung LTN121AP03-001 display may be another good candidate, but I wasn't able to find any datasheet.

So, I think the best candidate is still the HV121WX5-110 (AFFS type). In fact, any HV121WX5-XXX are OK, the last three numbers are only for a different manufacturing batch of the same panel.

15th June 2013 I bought a DC02000WF00 2530p LCD cable and a 50.4Y817.001 rev A01 LCD cable that fits 2730p laptop. I received them yesterday. The goal is to use the the 2530p's cable with the 2730p LCD connector.

Here are the two cables :
The 2530p DC02000WF00 The 2730p 50.4Y817.001
[ATTACH=CONFIG]9300[/ATTACH] [ATTACH=CONFIG]9301[/ATTACH]


some quite simple reverse engineering using a multimeter and the 2530p schematic (found here) allowed me to verify electrical connections through both LCD cables.

The following photo represents the two LCD cables (2730p on the left). The connectors has been opened to see how wires are soldered inside. The 2730p LCD cable is very high density. Each wire is a coax cable. Soldering will be very tricky !

[ATTACH=CONFIG]9302[/ATTACH]

I have identified the labels of each pin of the 5 connectors attached to the DC02000WF00 cable. With the pinout of the HV121WX5-110 LCD panel, it's very easy to build a wiring diagram. these data are summarized into this file : [ATTACH]9303[/ATTACH]. (It is partly writen in french, sorry about that )

Update from the 13th October 2013 Here is a photo of work in progress. All the grounds of each coaxial wire have been attached to an adhesive copper tape. [ATTACH=CONFIG]9304[/ATTACH]

Another one with the cable almost finished.

[ATTACH=CONFIG]9305[/ATTACH]

The work was not easy at all. I had to use a binocular microscope, a surgeon cutter and other high-precision tools.... I was also very happy to have a Weller station with a WXMP "pencil".

Build a new cable was not enough, the metal-frame surrounding the LCD panel had to be thinned on its top to fit inside the cover. It implies a complete disassembly of the panel... That's why the HV121WX6-XXX LCD panel maybe a better choice. It doesn't have a digitizer and the screen itself is around 5.5 mm thick instead of the initial 6.5 mm for this one.

Update from the 19th October 2013 After some experiments, this screen is a massive visual improvement against the toshiba LTD121EW7V stock panel of my 2530p.

But there is one remaining issue : the luminosity cannot be adjusted using the Fn+F9, F10 and F11 shortcuts, which is very annoying for battery life. The ambient light sensor doesn't work neither. I shorted this board to apply the PWM signal coming from the mainboard straightly to the LCD without better success. I will try to get a scope to see the signal waveform on this pin.

To fix this, I'm looking for the 2530p's LS-402CP light sensor board diagram and the schematics of the HP Elitebook 2730p (Wistron NORN 2.0). I haven't been able to find these for free. If anyone does have one of them and could send it to me, I would really appreciate.
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The work was not easy at all. I had to use a binocular microscope, a surgeon cutter and other high-precision tools.... I was also very happy to have a Weller station with a WXMP "pencil".

Build a new cable was not enough, the metal-frame surrounding the LCD panel had to be thinned on its top to fit inside the cover. It implies a complete disassembly of the panel... That's why the HV121WX6-XXX LCD panel maybe a better choice. It doesn't have a digitizer and the screen itself is around 5.5 mm thick instead of the initial 6.5 mm for this one.

Really impressive tech work.

Can you elaborate on the thinning panel step in your original writeup with perhaps a photo or two? As you point out, the HV121WX6-XXX LCD panel from a X200T is pricier so anybody contemplating this could evaluate disassembly labor and time to thin a HV121WX5-110 as cheaper alternative .

Wonder if you could offer any Paypal service to create that hybrid 2530P+2730P cable? The is going to be a limiting factor for others to consider this mod. There are no restrictions for requesting donations or charging a service fee for such a serice on T|I.

Update from the 19th October 2013

After some experiments, this screen is a massive visual improvement against the toshiba LTD121EW7V stock panel of my 2530p.

But there is one remaining issue : the luminosity cannot be adjusted using the Fn+F9, F10 and F11 shortcuts, which is very annoying for battery life.

The ambient light sensor doesn't work neither. I shorted this board to apply the PWM signal coming from the mainboard straightly to the LCD without better success. I will try to get a scope to see the signal waveform on this pin.

To fix this, I'm looking for the 2530p's LS-402CP light sensor board diagram and the schematics of the HP Elitebook 2730p (Wistron NORN 2.0). I haven't been able to find these for free.

If anyone does have one of them and could send it to me, I would really appreciate.

Presumably you've gone into Edit Power Plan and tried to adjust the brightness there? That's just in case the HP Hotkey isn't functioning for whatever reason. Definitely would need to sort that out to keep battery life in check.

Wish you had a 2560P/2570P so could apply your extensive LCD mod abilities there in helping us fit a X220/X230 IPS panel. We've had no success with it as yet http://forum.techinferno.com/hp-business-class-notebooks/2537-12-5-hp-elitebook-2570p-owners-lounge.html#lcdupgrade .

As requested, 2530P + 2730P schematics

Elitebook 2730P

LA-4021 EliteBook 2530p

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Thank you Nando4 for your comment. I'm glad you like this work.

I will try to give some details of the thinning here. Unfortunately, I didn't took some pics during the process.

Really impressive tech work.

Can you elaborate on the thinning panel step in your original writeup with perhaps a photo or two? As you point out, the HV121WX6-XXX LCD panel from a X200T is pricier so anybody contemplating this could evaluate disassembly labor and time to thin a HV121WX5-110 as cheaper alternative .

OK. So yes, the HV121WX5-110 is really cheapper than the HV121WX6-XXX. It has a buit-in digitizer on the back, and a protective glass panel glued (around 1 mm thick) to the front side of LCD panel. With the used panels that can be found on ebay for example, this protective glass layer is often striped and imo, that's why it can be found at such low price.

The trick here is that since we need to remove this glass layer, the LCD panel underneath is like a new one ! This is the good new.

The bad new is now.

Here is a pick of the back side of the panel :

(The upper side of the LCD panel is the top of the pic)

post-18740-14494996277921_thumb.jpg

A close-up of the upper left part (The digitizer has been removed here) :

post-18740-14494996278173_thumb.jpg

From that pic, one can see the plastic white hooks that maintain the metal frame between each flexible PCB ribbons.

On this side of the metal frame, the thickness is 6.5 mm. It must be refined to around 5,0 mm (like stock panel).

If that part of the frame is not refined, it may cut the underneath WLAN and WLAN cables over time...

Once it is refined to the right thickness, the plastic white hooks of this side are also cut.

The LCD panel is a sandwitch of several layers. If the metal frame cannot hold them together, it may be a path for dust to go between LCD panel and backlight layer. I will see over time...

The last part of the metal frame to cut is shown here (see the red circles) :

This is because the global dimentions of the LCD are slightly higher than stock panels.

post-18740-14494996278315_thumb.jpg

Wonder if you could offer any Paypal service to create that hybrid 2530P+2730P cable? The availability of the 5.5m panel is going to be the limiting factor for others to consider this mod. There are no restrictions for requesting donations or charging a service fee for this on T|I.

Well, I did not expect such a proposal. I'm not planning to build other cables, maybe one more just in case mine breaks. It was a huge work that required a lot of time and attention. I did that only for fun, a sort of challenge.

Frankly, it is not economically viable. You have to buy the cables. Considering shipping fees, I spent around 20€ for both. When you add the 10 hours or more in front of the binocular microscope....

Presumably you've gone into Edit Power Plan and tried to adjust the brightness there? That's just in case the HP Hotkey isn't functioning for whatever reason. Definitely would need to sort that out to keep battery life in check.

What do you mean by "gone into Edit Power Plan" ?

In fact, I have three mainboards and I can build 2 fully functionnal 2530p. The testing is only done on the second one. I don't want to break my business laptop.

Yesterday, the first tests were done using the 1.6GHz L9300 mainboard which has a stock F12 BIOS. brightness adjustments never worked.

Then I assembled the second mainboard, based on the 1.2 GHz U9300 CPU. This has a F21 BIOS version. Brightness adjustments have worked just fine unless I use the LS-402CP light sensor board to enable this functionality. I got some odd results that I don't yet understand.

So I managed to put the new screen in my business laptop, based on the 2.13GHz L9600 CPU with F21 BIOS. Brightness adjustments work fine, but there is always this light sensor board issue. Well, it not a real problem, this functionality is, for me, just a gadget. But I still want to undrestand what is going on.

So, I have the following assumptions :

- Brightness adjustment is dead on the 1.6GHz L9300 mainboard (I doubt about that, I own this board since the beginning and it has never failed)

- this is a BIOS version related issue. The 40pins LCD panels have been introduced lately during the 2530p life. I noticed that the later LED-based panels can work with PWM signal from 200 to 1 kHz. The HV121WX5 accepts PWM signal from only 200 to 350 Hz (see datasheet p7). So, I need to do further tests.

Wish you had a 2560P/2570P so could apply your extensive LCD mod abilities there in helping us fit a X220/X230 IPS panel. We've had no success with it as yet http://forum.techinferno.com/hp-business-class-notebooks/2537-12-5-hp-elitebook-2570p-owners-lounge.html#lcdupgrade .

OK, I will have a look at this topic to see if I can help.

As requested, 2530P + 2730P schematics

Elitebook 2730P

LA-4021 EliteBook 2530p

Thank you for that. Your 2530p pdf has only 36 pages, just like mine. It seems that there are some missing pages in it as explained here : Elitebook 2530p LA-4021p Full schematic - Power components • Forum ELVIKOM

The LS-402CP data can be found there : Schemat HP EliteBook 2530p Compal LA-4021P SKYY • Forum ELVIKOM

I tried to get some points to be able to download the "small board.rar" file without any success.

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One last thing to do :

Stock LCD panel dimensions are 178,0 x 275,8 mm² to be compared with the 180,0 x 276,8 mm² of the HV121WX5 panel.

The 2nd one being 1mm larger, there is a little misalignment between the apertures of both hinges brackets and the back cover. when all of that is screwed, the edges of the back cover bend out.

The apertures of the hinges brackets must be widened and the part of it touching the corner of back cover have to be smoothed.

After that, the sceen fits in its cover like slippers at home !

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