Laptop Backlight Converted From CCFL To LED


[Lee Davison] acquired an Acer laptop that didn’t have a display anymore. He had enough parts on hand to add in an LCD panel and give it a CCFL backlight. But when he started looking for an inverter to drive the backlight he couldn’t find one. What he did have on hand were some smashed screens that had LED backlights and so the CCFL to LED backlight conversion project was born.

He tore into the LED display and found the driver board. Unfortunately he didn’t locate the datasheet for the exact LED driver, but he found one that was similar and was able to trace out the support circuitry on the PCB. This let him cut away the unneeded parts of the board without damaging the driver. He didn’t want to pull out the CCFL tubes until he was sure the LED conversion would work so he tried it out on another smashed panel (where does he come up with all these parts) and it worked great. Once he got everything in place he was very happy with the results. The only drawback to the system is that he doesn’t have the ability to dim the backlight.

17 thoughts on “Laptop Backlight Converted From CCFL To LED

  1. Dumpster’s usually yield those sorts of parts…
    Two of my servers have been made entirely from dumpster parts.
    Heck, i even found a dual opteron workstation in a dumpster once.

  2. “(where does he come up with all these parts)”

    I can’t count on both hands how many broken/faulty/worn out laptops I’ve been given from a friend who gets given them from clients who no longer want them, he has his own business fixing/upgrading/maintaining out people’s pcs/networks/coding websites.
    One of them I have here is a 17″ core i5 laptop which woudn’t power up after it had half a pint of water spilt on it…until it got to me and dried out :D the ports on the left side did have some oxidation happening and I can’t get the lan to work.
    Anything I can’t use I put on eBay and split things 50/50 with my friend.

  3. Want a source for all these parts? Spread it around that you are a computer/electronic/ TV recycling person. You will recycle this stuff for them for free! Suddenly you have laptops coming out of your ears.

  4. did a similar sort of fix for my old dell laptop. tore out all the CCFL stuff, bought a LED strip, power supply, and some general components (cable plugs etc), and implanted it in there. similar effect, less space

  5. “where does he come up with all these parts” LOL time for all the suggestions that are relative,relative to many circumstances. In rural America your pretty much screwed, again this is all relative. YMMV. Yes I’m a bit jealous , I can get all the junk, but rarely anything that turns out useful.

  6. I like the idea of using a led driver from another laptop, how come i didn’t think of it comes to mind. To bad about not being able to change the back light levels.

    After working as a network admin/cctv installer tech for the past 8 years i have ended up with to many working cameras/servers/routers and laptops to count. When i am done with a install or upgrade i just ask if they want the tech garbage hauled away and tell them i will take care of recycling it. Its good for them, the environment and you get plenty of toys to tinker with.

  7. Where does he come up with all these parts? Mainly by being a little bit of a hoarder. The laptop is mine, and as I’m a French speaker I refused to buy a British laptop or return to France and buy a new one with a keyboard I can use properly.

    Queue daddy to the rescue.:) yay!

    Backlight brightness isn’t an issue. It’s settled at a level that isn’t as blinding as the morning sun in a dark room, but also bright enough to be workable in a sunny room or the garden.

    Thanks dad!


  8. @sudos.

    On the 27/09/2013 (27th September if you’re in the US) Lee Davison (Dad to me) passed away in his sleep. He was 49 years of age. I’m sorry the link to his website/blog is dead, I have no idea how to access it now there is no longer an internal home network.

    Admin, maybe delete this thread? The link will be permanently broken I’m afraid.

    Thank you xxx

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