Jump to content

Photo

F18A MK2

F18A VDP 9918A

189 replies to this topic

#51 Bmack36 OFFLINE  

Bmack36

    Moonsweeper

  • 429 posts

Posted Thu Jun 28, 2018 9:09 AM

Probably would be better not to mention "HDMI" and just say High Definition output for modern TVs or something like that. 



#52 MrPix OFFLINE  

MrPix

    Space Invader

  • 22 posts

Posted Thu Jun 28, 2018 9:36 AM

It's probably too late for that. :( There's enough mentions of it with the keyword that they will find it, if they haven't already. They're very active. My contact from them happened about two months after I first mentioned publicly  that I'd designed an HDMI part.

When they contacted me, I had to get an attorney to write them and say, "it was just a proposed prototype that was never sold." They also dropped mention that I was an LLC with no assets, so while not lawsuit-proof I was very lawsuit resistant ;) My attorney did warn me of how aggressive they were, and that his associates had seen someone lose their business for putting HDMI on a retro board.

 

Their IP isn't in the name, but in the physical design of the connectors. 

 



#53 matthew180 OFFLINE  

matthew180

    River Patroller

  • Topic Starter
  • 2,529 posts
  • Location:Castaic, California

Posted Thu Jun 28, 2018 10:47 AM

I registered just to give a note of caution:

HDMI is regulated by HDMI Licensing, LLC. They're kinda lame. And when I say kinda lame, what I mean is "you wish you'd picked a fight with the Russian mob instead."

The license fee is $10,000 to per year, plus $0.15c per unit.


This is certainly concerning. Apparently there is an alternate license for less than 10K units, but it is still $5K/yr and $1/unit. It is not the unit cost that is the big deal. It would nice if the offered a limited special license for people doing small projects. Some like $2/unit and a max lifetime quantity of less than some number (2000 units or some such thing). Hobbyists like us can never afford the annual licenses, we are just not making that kind of money on these projects. But it would be nice to have a way to legally use the specification at a cost that does not completely kill the project.
 

They will go after your home, your car, everything you own. They seem to get great delight in going after hobbyists.

They will utterly destroy your life if you release a product with an HDMI, mini HDMI or micro-HDMI connector on it.


Do you have any links to anything public where this has happened? Some quick searching only turned up a Monster Cable lawsuit, etc. I see a lot of small projects using this video format, so I wonder if they are getting slammed with lawsuits?
 

In my designs I use a non-HDMI connector, then supply a licensed HDMI cable that has been modified. DVI is HDMI minus DHCP, but the standard connector is too bulky.

Good luck!



Actually, DVI signaling is slightly different. DVI does not have the video guardband after the preamble, and this will show up as pixels on your active display. I found this out the hard way, i.e. lots of hair-pulling and testing.
 



#54 Bmack36 OFFLINE  

Bmack36

    Moonsweeper

  • 429 posts

Posted Thu Jun 28, 2018 10:55 AM

I was wondering what Analogue did for this, as the SuperNT was a very high profile release. I don't seem them listed in the HDMI adopter's list, so that makes me think they didn't license it. I don't see them use the HDMI anywhere on their product or literature.


Edited by Bmack36, Thu Jun 28, 2018 10:55 AM.


#55 BeeryMiller OFFLINE  

BeeryMiller

    Moonsweeper

  • 445 posts
  • Location:Campbellsburg, KY

Posted Thu Jun 28, 2018 11:10 AM

Do a search for "HDMI Licensing, LLC lawsuit" and you will find some links.

I found this one to be interesting at https://sellercentra...n-hdmi/36568/25with the notes below.  Make me wonder if what they describe as an "adopter" could make/assemble the device and one would then be in the clear.

 

Mansa, all you need to do in order to verify adopter status is look at this list:

http://www.hdmi.org/...t:2px">3</span>

I’ve never heard of them wanting to preapprove importations. They don’t preapprove ours, nor have I ever asked them to. We have never had the slightest hiccup in our imports – no demands to prove anything, no extra documentation asked for or required, nothing.

My understanding is that if the shipper is an adopter (or if you are, but you probably don’t want to pay $10K for that), you will have no issues with customs seizures. If the shipper is not an adopter, you need to prove that the goods were made by an adopter, and this information should be verifiable through the party that sends them to you.

I hope that helps.

Kurt
BJC



#56 mizapf OFFLINE  

mizapf

    River Patroller

  • 3,273 posts
  • Location:Germany

Posted Thu Jun 28, 2018 11:13 AM

I registered just to give a note of caution:

HDMI is regulated by HDMI Licensing, LLC. They're kinda lame. And when I say kinda lame, what I mean is "you wish you'd picked a fight with the Russian mob instead."

The license fee is $10,000 to per year, plus $0.15c per unit

 

 

If things are like this, this is just another disgusting degeneration. Same s**t with the DVD and Bluray licensing. Money for nothing (and chicks for free?).

 

If people had decided to distribute HTTP and HTML under commercial licenses, we'd still dial up to mailboxes.



#57 OLD CS1 OFFLINE  

OLD CS1

    Quadrunner

  • 5,319 posts
  • Technology Samurai
  • Location:Tallahassee, FL

Posted Thu Jun 28, 2018 11:14 AM

I have no documentation to back this up.  I heard tell of a group which works as an umbrella for hobbyist licensing of this kind.



#58 MrPix OFFLINE  

MrPix

    Space Invader

  • 22 posts

Posted Thu Jun 28, 2018 11:22 AM

Well, the desired outcome... Designer is now aware of the problem and may decide to either pay the fee, find a loophole or end-around, or hope to go below the radar.

I think it is very sad that they don't have a "prototyping" or "hobbyist" level for a few hundred dollars or less, or a simple $1 per unit fee or something similar. I think it's an anti-competitive market control ploy by the larger signatories.

What I really hate is that it is the smaller hardware developers like us that get dinged and have to do a bunch of extra work just to stear clear of legal tar-pits we just don't have the time, skills or inclination to deal with. :/



#59 Mike Karate OFFLINE  

Mike Karate

    Space Invader

  • 19 posts
  • Location:US - Indiana

Posted Thu Jun 28, 2018 11:30 AM

Are you building a reserve list for this yet or do we just need to go to your site and enter on the list for interested in the original version?



#60 BeeryMiller OFFLINE  

BeeryMiller

    Moonsweeper

  • 445 posts
  • Location:Campbellsburg, KY

Posted Thu Jun 28, 2018 11:59 AM

Should this HDMI issue become a problem, I would rather see the MK2 modified to use a VGA output and wait another 3 to 6 months for its release for a design to use the VGA instead.

 

Beery



#61 OLD CS1 OFFLINE  

OLD CS1

    Quadrunner

  • 5,319 posts
  • Technology Samurai
  • Location:Tallahassee, FL

Posted Thu Jun 28, 2018 12:52 PM

Should this HDMI issue become a problem, I would rather see the MK2 modified to use a VGA output and wait another 3 to 6 months for its release for a design to use the VGA instead.

 

Beery

 

Screw that noise (the HDMI noise, that is.)  What is the licensing for DisplayPort?

 

(How did the Vampire guys get around the HDMI issue?)



#62 MrPix OFFLINE  

MrPix

    Space Invader

  • 22 posts

Posted Thu Jun 28, 2018 12:58 PM

Should this HDMI issue become a problem, I would rather see the MK2 modified to use a VGA output and wait another 3 to 6 months for its release for a design to use the VGA instead.

 

Beery

 

I'd personally prefer DVI-D, using a compact connector. This would allow DVI adaptors to HDMI, SDI, VGA, S-Video, etc etc.... The TFP410 is interesting there.

Making the pins into the socket SMD instead of PTH you would free up enough room to use an AD724/AD725 for S-Video too.

It's just a shame larger DPRAMs are so ridiculously expensive. They would simplify this a LOT.

IMHO.



#63 MrPix OFFLINE  

MrPix

    Space Invader

  • 22 posts

Posted Thu Jun 28, 2018 1:12 PM

Also, it is hard to turn up lawsuits because they're almost always settled out of court with non-disclosure clauses.



#64 senior_falcon OFFLINE  

senior_falcon

    Stargunner

  • 1,177 posts
  • Location:Lansing, NY, USA

Posted Thu Jun 28, 2018 1:30 PM

In the US during prohibition, "wine bricks" were sold that were dried grapes. These came with instructions on how to add them to water and then the warning; “After dissolving the brick in a gallon of water, do not place the liquid in a jug away in the cupboard for twenty days, because then it would turn into wine.”

 

Could this be a workaround for the hdmi problem? Leave a component off and then in the instructions say: "be sure that you do not solder a 99LS12345 chip in location "H" because then you would then have an unlicensed HDMI port."



#65 MrPix OFFLINE  

MrPix

    Space Invader

  • 22 posts

Posted Thu Jun 28, 2018 1:30 PM

I just did a bit of research. If you don't want to redo your FPGA code but are willing to slightly reshuffle your PCB, this IC is interesting. It's a cross-switch/converter that shifts HDMI to Displayport. It's quite economical too.

https://store.ti.com...re-octopart-wwe



#66 matthew180 OFFLINE  

matthew180

    River Patroller

  • Topic Starter
  • 2,529 posts
  • Location:Castaic, California

Posted Thu Jun 28, 2018 2:18 PM

I have literally spent hundreds of hours researching connectors, tiny boards, cable assemblies, etc. to solve the problem of getting the video signal out of the F18A board.  The problem is always the same, if you don't use main-stream connectors and cables, the costs are too prohibitive.  Also, the connectors designed for video are so huge and typically expect to be supported by the chassis, which the F18A PCB does not have.

 

I have considered DisplayPort many times.  I just spent 30 minutes trying to find a mini-DP, female, PCB-mount connector.  Very slim pickings.  And when I can find one, it is either too big or not readily available from standard suppliers.

 

If the community here wants to help solve this problem, I am all ears and would be very grateful.

 

That TI chip is interesting, but I would be looking at the BGA due to size, and 0.5mm pitch means 3mil traces to escape the back row, and that is prohibitive from a manufacturing standpoint.  I would also be wasting a lot of the chip since it is actually a switch.  I assume they probably make a single channel converter IC?

 

I can generate DP signals directly from the FPGA, that is not a problem.  The electrical connection is certainly easier and more straight-forward then HDMI for sure.  I just need a physical interface solution, as I mentioned above.


Edited by matthew180, Thu Jun 28, 2018 2:19 PM.


#67 Bmack36 OFFLINE  

Bmack36

    Moonsweeper

  • 429 posts

Posted Thu Jun 28, 2018 2:23 PM

This work?

https://www.mouser.c...jOawozglbyhKA==



#68 matthew180 OFFLINE  

matthew180

    River Patroller

  • Topic Starter
  • 2,529 posts
  • Location:Castaic, California

Posted Thu Jun 28, 2018 2:29 PM

I saw that one, but it is expensive.  It is also really wide (11mm) and long, and has a "Reverse Offset" configuration which I don't understand.  I think it is designed to mount in a notch in the side of a PCB (like the side of a laptop), which gives it more stability and support (but I'm not sure).

 

I did find this company, BossComm:

 

http://www.bossconn....ni-displayport/

 

They sell their connectors on their own store too, for good prices in volume ($0.58 each @ qty 100).  But it makes me nervous.  Why don't they use distributors like other part manufacturers?  What is the quality of the connector?  I know companies like Molex, TE, etc. but BossComm?  No idea.



#69 MrPix OFFLINE  

MrPix

    Space Invader

  • 22 posts

Posted Thu Jun 28, 2018 2:40 PM

I've bought mini-USB connectors from BossConn that were of consistent quality, for use on a wifi dongle. Their SMD ones use a good quality high temperature plastic insert. The PTH ones can't handle reflow temperatures, but that's the natural order of things ;)

They're not fly by night. Been a consistent seller through Ali* for 3-4 years at least.



#70 acadiel OFFLINE  

acadiel

    Stargunner

  • 1,404 posts
  • www.hexbus.com
  • Location:USA

Posted Thu Jun 28, 2018 3:12 PM

I’d say just do it and don’t even mention the connector by name. ;)

#71 OLD CS1 OFFLINE  

OLD CS1

    Quadrunner

  • 5,319 posts
  • Technology Samurai
  • Location:Tallahassee, FL

Posted Thu Jun 28, 2018 4:02 PM

I’d say just do it and don’t even mention the connector by name. ;)

 

I actually think this is how the Vampire guys are handling it.

 

Never mind.  It actually says HDMI on their website. :woozy:  I am reading a couple of threads which discuss this to see if there is any "official" word on it.



#72 matthew180 OFFLINE  

matthew180

    River Patroller

  • Topic Starter
  • 2,529 posts
  • Location:Castaic, California

Posted Thu Jun 28, 2018 7:06 PM

I’d say just do it and don’t even mention the connector by name. ;)

 

Sorry, I can't swallow that.  I'm not willing to risk a lawsuit over something like a hobby project.  Would you?  I'm to old to have a "what are they gonna do!" attitude.



#73 matthew180 OFFLINE  

matthew180

    River Patroller

  • Topic Starter
  • 2,529 posts
  • Location:Castaic, California

Posted Thu Jun 28, 2018 7:21 PM

@OLD CS1: Based on the websites I found, both of those projects you mentioned make it hard or impossible to contact/talk to the people behind the project.  If you have any contact with either of them, can you ask if they are just "hoping" to avoid the legal problems?



#74 acadiel OFFLINE  

acadiel

    Stargunner

  • 1,404 posts
  • www.hexbus.com
  • Location:USA

Posted Thu Jun 28, 2018 9:17 PM

 
Sorry, I can't swallow that.  I'm not willing to risk a lawsuit over something like a hobby project.  Would you?  I'm to old to have a "what are they gonna do!" attitude.

Very interesting discussion here:

https://www.raspberr...ic.php?t=174357

Read what Philby says at the bottom.

IMHO, I don't think a small hobby run of a board is going to ruffel anyone's feathers, but I'm not the guy designing, building and selling the board.

A lot of the third party Chinese cables on Amazon and the composite to hdmi converters are likely not even licenced, and don't even have logos on them.

The license fee for a small provider is supposedly $5k and $1/unit or something like that. To make it reasonable to actually license, there'd have to be demand for probably 500 V2's, adding $11/ea to everyone's cost.

There's been a lot of stirring the pot and "the sky is falling" by other posters in here, but honestly, it's only one or two people in the thread doing it. Those doing it, pease stop making it sound like it's the end of the world, we will figure it out.


Sent from my moto x4 using Tapatalk

#75 pixelpedant OFFLINE  

pixelpedant

    Space Invader

  • 37 posts

Posted Thu Jun 28, 2018 9:24 PM

Should this HDMI issue become a problem, I would rather see the MK2 modified to use a VGA output and wait another 3 to 6 months for its release for a design to use the VGA instead.

 

Beery

 

I'll also put my name in as one who'd not only be satisfied with a reworked/delayed VGA MK2, failing the HDMI option, but absolutely ecstatic about it.  By and large, my entire huge, complicated retro a/v signal routing/processing/display rig is analogue, so a VGA MK2 would kick ass.  Either pads or pins (probably pads would be more space economic and flexible from a cross-platform standpoint) for RGBS or RGBHV would be awesome.  But I'll be happy with whatever comes along, in the end :)


Edited by pixelpedant, Thu Jun 28, 2018 9:52 PM.






Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: F18A, VDP, 9918A

0 user(s) are browsing this forum

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users