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Matrix Orbital LK204 LCD


What is it : Inverted blue 20x4 LCD
Model No. : LK204-25-WB-V
Supplier : Matrix Orbital
Cost : US$82.95

Availability : Now
Verdict : Quite tasty

Introduction.

I like to think I'm a man of many talents, but this doesn't mean that I've given up trying new things. This week I've been dabbling in mysterious black arts in an attempt to hone my psychic powers, and you the BT readers are going to be among the first of my victims, *cough* I mean test subjects of course. So make sure you're sitting comfortably, touch the BT logo in the top left hand corner of this window with the index finger on your left hand and concentrate on your favourite colour. Hold it right there, it's coming to me... nearly, ah-ha! It's BLUE right? How amazing am I?

Well now I bet you'll be wanting an LCD to match that favourite colour of yours, and while various blue LCD's have been available in smaller sizes for a while now, 20x4 displays have been difficult to source. Enter the new LK204-25-WB-V from Matrix Orbital.


The display.

Identical in nearly all ways to many of Matrix Orbital's other 204-25 displays, the only really unique feature of the LK204-25-WB-V is the display's colour.

The LK204-25-WB-V has the following features,
<ul><li>20 x 4 (characters x lines) LCD display,</li><li> Display area: 76.3 x 25.0 (L x W in mm),</li><li> Module size: 98.0 x 60.0 x 27.5 (L x W x D in mm),</li><li> Fast serial interface (19200bps using RS232),</li><li> Wide voltage input (7 to 15 VDC),</li><li> A 25 key keypad interface and an 8 port GPO interface.</li></ul>
As far as serial character LCD's go this display is about as feature packed as they come.

A quick look at the display:


The LCD itself looks like an inverted version of the LK-204-25-PC, in that it is backlit from the side using two white LED's. The blue background is white light shining through crossed polarises. Matrix Orbital have set the display's polarising sheet to be in phase with the display panel, so that text appears white and contrast is optimised.


Up and running.

Connecting the display to your computer, using its more advanced features and controlling it in software have all been covered in reviews such as this one and this one, so there's little point in me going through it yet again! Let's skip to pictures of it working then:


Looks very nice doesn't it? The rectangles around each character which can be seen in the pictures above are only visible when looking at the display from face on (at normal incidence); from all other angles the display has a nice even blue background (providing the contrast has been set correctly!).


Final words.

There's not really a lot to say in this review. By now you should know that Matrix Orbital displays are of the highest quality, so given that the only new feature brought forward by this display is its colour, this is the only real feature under test. Unlike many blue displays the LK204-25-WB-V has good contrast, so it is never difficult to read and the blue display is certainly attractive. Another cracking display from Matrix Orbital then.

Along side the display reviewed here you can also buy the LCD2041-WB-V (1 GPO, no keypad) for $61.90 USD and both displays with normal 5VDC inputs for a $2 USD discount.

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