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22 May 2022

Replace the LCD Panel in a Clockwork Pi DevTerm A06

by Steven B. Combs, Ph.D.

In a previous Clockwork Pi DevTerm assembly video, I my LCD panel was broken and I had to hack the panel in order to get it working; however, Clockwork was quick to send out a replacement and during a 2022-05-01 livestream, I replaced my hacked up LCD screen with the new one.

The video below is a 27 minute edit of the longer one hour and thirteen minutes livestream.


Clockwork Pi DevTerm

Image courtesy of Clockwork Pi, <https://www.clockworkpi.com>

A huge shout-out to Clockwork, and Alex, for the opportunity to experience the DevTerm. They sent their top-of-the-line DevTerm, the A06, to me at no cost. That’s a $340 value and I am under no obligation to provide a positive review. My thoughts are my own. Thanks again, Clockwork, for supporting my YouTube channel and blog!

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Watch the Video

Title: ‌I unbox, assemble and demo the Clockwork Pi DevTerm A06. See how it went.

In this video, I replace the DevTerm LCD panel and demonstrate the VirtualT emulator.

Video Errata

None as of 2022-05-22.

TRS-80 Model 100 Similarities and Emulator

After I install the replacement LCD panel, I compare the DevTerm to a TRS-80 Model 100. I don’t show how to install the software (a later video), but I demonstrate the VirtualT TRS-80 Model 100 emulator optimized for the DevTerm.

TRS-80 Model 100

By NapoliRoma - Own work, Public Domain, <https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=3378530>

The emulator has a few quirks, but it’s good! More on this emulator in the future.

Below are the links I mention in this blog post and companion video.

  1. ClockworkPi
  2. DevTerm A08
  3. Wikipedia TRS-80 Model 100 Entry
  4. VirtualT Emulator

DevTerm Specifications

There are various models of the DevTerm. The model sent to me by Clockwork was the A06 that includes:

DevTerm Iso shot

The A06 model includes plenty of ports:

It’s a fun and capable gadget if you can get past the 65% keyboard.

Crushed Ribbon Cable

Below is an image of the crushed/split ribbon cable. I did not show this in the video.

Tear in DevTerm display ribbon cable

Thanks again to Clockwork for immediately shipping a replacement. While waiting, I grabbed my ohm meter, an X-Acto knife, wire, and soldering iron and got to work.

With the tip of the knife, I lightly scratched the plastic from the ribbon cable to expose the conductive material underneath. I used the ohmmeter to test across the ribbon cable to the connector on the LED driver board. Once I had enough of the ribbon cable exposed to make a consistent circuit, I soldered a small wire to the ribbon cable and then to the LED driver board. I connected it to the DevTerm, turned it on, and after about 10 seconds, the display LEDs turned on.

Display panel LEDs working after my hack

More DevTerm Content?

As I mention during the video, I have even more content I want to produce for the DevTerm that includes:

What ideas do you have or what do you want to see? Drop a comment below and let me know.

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