Another Blade Runner thread: The Portable Voight-Kampff Scanner

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zapwizard

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Amazing build so far. As a lover of functional props, I hope it all comes together in the end.
My only input on the rail was to perhaps look at the guide rails on the side of a laptop DVD drive. Some of the older models used all-metal slides. Modern ones use half-plastic half-metal slides.

The whole body of the reader sure looks like Sony went and dug up some old camera/camcorder prototype and re-worked it. The screwed on panels on the front look like they are Covering up a old lens opening or something. Too bad Sony has only made several thousand different cameras over the years.
 

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Ein

Sr Member
Fear not, guys! Work proceeds on this.

I've had my hands unbelievably full with a somewhat important commission for a pair of Final Fantasy XIV props. Between that and my day job, a lot of my free time got soaked up. I figured I'd hop back in and continue updates once the circuit boards I ordered arrived from China, as I didn't want to get too far along with printing or molding the housing only to find that I had to go all the way back to the drawing board. The PCBs took a lot longer than I was expecting to get here, but...



They look great! I ordered an initial batch of 10 just to play around with. I already have the other electronics components to attach to this handy, so I'm going to hopefully get this set up in the next few days and confirm it works.

I'm also going to revisit the design I had for the spring-latching mechanism. My test print of the design does work, but with just a single spring it can jam or fold on in itself. I'm probably going to redesign it to move along a more captured route, maybe with guide rods in the center of the springs to keep them lined up straight.

Hey dude! I got the movie, and got a couple of screenshots that show some stuff:

1. The "boot up screen" is like a flash that covers the entire screen, then it goes...dark? (first frame top left)
2. During scanning the first LED that goes on is the blue, then the red and white (bottom left)
3. There seems to be an orange LED on top of the scanning module that "seems" to stay orange when the subject is a replicant. Screen is lit during scanning, then it goes dark again. (Top right)
4. While scanning there's a white light coming from inside the device (second frame top left)

Pretty much all of these features are what the program I've set up should be able to replicate. The white glow from the inside of the device is because they used some kind of display backlight in the screen area - I have been told through the grapevine that it may have been an iphone backlight. The TFT display I am using has a similar backlight that should emit a glow inside the device when active to match.
 

Kylo1

Sr Member
Thanks for the update! I'm hoping you can make this prop a reality (I just listed my name on your interest thread). Keep up the great work!

My sentiments exactly!
I also listed my name on your interest thread..........and there is certainly a lot of interest!!! I definitely want one of these beauties.
Fantastic work so far and looking forward to the updates
 
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Ein

Sr Member
Well, I have been driving myself crazy with this. I've been through 3 iterations of the PCB design to try and get it working. Each time I order one, it takes 4-to-6 weeks to get here from China. Then, even with continued tweaks, I can't seem to get it running. I've been holding off on posting for a bit because I've been hoping that the next version I work up will be the one that brings this thing back to life, but I'm having no joy and I've been throwing dozens of hours into a hole on this.



If I breadboard the thing, it seems to work alright. If I try hooking everything up through the PCB? No dice. The screen will light up, but only with the backlight. Nothing else will show on the display. This usually suggests one of the connections for the device is wrong, but I've gone through and continuity tested the whole board and everything looks like it's going where it should. I've tried multiple boards and just can't seem to get it to display properly.



Again, the fact that it works while breadboarded suggests that there's nothing wrong with the display or the code.

The audio amplifier I built into this also seems to not be working correctly. I can get sound, but barely - it sounds like the raw DAC signal from the pin, rather than an amplified signal. Again, this would usually suggest that maybe there's no power going to the amplifier, but the multimeter shows everything fine on that end. Most of these problems probably come down to a small strand of solder paste that has bridged two adjacent connections, but even under a magnifying glass the components are so small that it is basically impossible for me to be able to tell with any certainty.

I'm arriving at the point where the PCB is no longer going to be a viable option, I think. Either I'd need to outsource the design and assembly to someone with more experience, or I'll have to go back to the basic design and try to redo everything so I can cram discrete amps, chargers, and other circuits in from Adafruit and Sparkfun. Extremely frustrated with this at the moment.
 

Stefan Jones

Sr Member
Thank you for posting an update, even if the content is so unpleasant. I hope you can solve the technical problems somehow. I myself can not help in this, but I hope somebody here from TheRPF can somehow help, that this great project will become reality. heads up!
 

Kylo1

Sr Member
Thanks for the update Adam. Despite the set backs, don't get too disheartened as you are doing a fantastic job. I'm sure you will iron out the technical issues somehow.
Keep up the good work..............so looking forward to this becoming a reality :thumbsup
 
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Borax

New Member
Thanks for the update!

Are you designing the PCB in eagle?
If so, I can double check your design and maybe make a few adjustments.

Even if you don’t use eagle, I could take a look at the schematics and the board as PDF.

I’m confident that we will be able to get this working :)
 

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Ein

Sr Member
Thanks for the update!

Are you designing the PCB in eagle?
If so, I can double check your design and maybe make a few adjustments.

Even if you don’t use eagle, I could take a look at the schematics and the board as PDF.

I’m confident that we will be able to get this working :)
Borax - I'm PM'ing you now with the EAGLE schematics. I'd appreciate any sanity checking you can offer. :)
 
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MurdocXXL

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Great to see that the community is helping when help is requested :love
Borax many thanks to offer your support :thumbsup

Hope you guys can figure out the problem, to get the scanner "alive".... :popcorn
 
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Absolutely incredible... I quite literally just joined this forum for all the fans of blade runner, and when I found this thread I was blown away. The work you've done on this thing is quite incredible. I could never in a million years replicate something like this truly beyond words! I will definitely be looking forward for future updates (would love to get one if you ever offer them since I'm trying to put together a K costume). Keep up the good work!!!:)
 

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MangyDog

Sr Member
Could it be that you made your tracks for the signals too small? Maybe there are hairline cracks in the tracks?

Try soldering on some wire to recreate the broken elements... you can correct errors on the pcb using copper tape as well... (done it plenty of times :D )
 

MangyDog

Sr Member
I hope you had some luck with the PCB, i forgot to mention.... Try and move over to Kicad. While it is a bit of a learning curve its a far superior circuit design program. Its also free and unlimited :D

It is a little more complicated to use but like i said its worth it. The PCB design tools also are great. You can ctrl click a track or foot print and it highlights that circuit... Its great to looking for mistakes in the pcb layout and any missing bits.

I made the leap to it about 2 years ago and havnt looked back.
 

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