This web page is maintained to keep Newton users informed about my progress in creating replacement parts for the MP2x00 EL backlight and resistive touchscreen (TS).
My project borrows from David Humphrey's awesome
Backlight Project page.
Although I'm not affiliated with David, he did a lot of work in publishing his discoveries on backlight replacements. Thanks David!
How does the new touchscreen look?
There are noticable lines at the top and bottom of the prototype display. They are present on the touchscreen or "pad" layer and will not be present on the final version.
Here's a view of the backlights I've tested. The order from left to right is blue, green and white. The output color doesn't always correspond to the material color, as you can see from this picture. I've just added a new white backlight that isn't PINK to the collection -- but it is not pictured here yet.
Here's a picture of the prototype with a glossy white piece of paper stuck in the left hand side of the backlight slot. You'll notice that it splits the screen in half from side to side. This is in addition to the AR coating (which is just barely noticable) that splits it from top to bottom. The left hand side looks much better in good lighting, but has very poor backlight performance.
Here's a shot of three touchscreens. The original apple TS is on the right. A "typical" FG industry standard panel is on the left. My first physical TS sample is in the middle. It is not sized, or terminated to fit in a Newton, but the next one will be.
This clip shows part of the actual engineering drawing detail of our new backlight. Note the attention to detail on dimensions. This backlight should slide right into the back of any Newton MP2x00 LCD module.
This photo shows the 1st articles that came off of the production line. These TS units are functionally the same as the original Apple touchscreens. There are some differences due to the manufacturing, but readability/viewability is very good.
This photo shows the 1st article backlight from our production facility. The new white backlight is on the bottom. It looks pink there is no power going to it. Testing has shown that light levels are below the Newton "green" EL panel, but the power drain is the same as the original. In other words, the new backlight will not cause your battery use to go up, unless you end up using it more than you did the green backlight! :-)
Note that both EL panles have wires attached, but the backlights don't come that way. You must use the wires that are already
inside of your Newton.
You can email me with any questions!