Stalled Iris 16 - RGB Vandal Button

Discussion in 'Custom Cases & Projects' started by iFreilicht, Oct 8, 2016.

  1. hardcore_gamer

    hardcore_gamer electronbender

    Great option, if it meets your needs.

    My layout engineers keep recommending Altium when I talked to them. However, it's not worth dropping a lot of money for a PCB tool if you don't regularly use it.
     
  2. iFreilicht

    iFreilicht FlexATX Authority
    Thread Starter Gold Supporter

    Thanks!

    It looks like it will. I'm trying it out right now and I really like the way they solved the user interaction.

    Yeah, even if it's just the 1000 bucks on Circuit Studio, that would increase the price of the final product by 10 bucks if I sold 100, so right now that cost just doesn't amortise. Thank you for asking them, though!
     
    Phuncz likes this.
  3. Hahutzy

    Hahutzy Airflow Optimizer

    Hey @iFreilicht, do you plan to only make this in 16mm diameter? (The current XS is using 12mm)
     
  4. LukeD

    LukeD Airflow Optimizer
    Case Designer

    Loving this idea iFreilicht.
    Its so hard to find an appealing switch to put on a case. Everything just looks so outdated. We need more modern solutions. Adding an RGB system would make the old fashioned vandal switches bearable :)
     
    iFreilicht likes this.
  5. ricochet

    ricochet SFF AFFLICTED

    Completely concur.
     
  6. iFreilicht

    iFreilicht FlexATX Authority
    Thread Starter Gold Supporter

    That is the plan right now. 12mm switches are way too small to fit all the electronics, so I could maybe make a downgraded version with a lower number of LEDs in the future. The main problem is the connection.

    To control the effects and load new patterns to the switch, you need USB, the smallest connector for that is microUSB. For scanning the HDD LED and to actually work as a power button, you need a pin header with four pins. And I wanted to have both come out the side for maximum space efficiency. So the total depth of both of those connectors has to fit through the hole of the switch as well. The smallest pin header series I found is Molex' PicoBlade, which is already too deep to fit through a 12mm hole back-to-back, even without any tolerances included, and the SMD version is too wide to fit a 12mm switch on the inside.

    So this downgraded 12mm version would have less LEDs, something like 8, would have the connections on its end instead of the side, and would not include a connection for the HDD LED.

    While I wouldn't rule out a variant like this in the future, it's certainly a less desirable product.

    Though to be fair, I don't know how many would actually want a fancy RGB LED switch for the back of their case if they can just get one without any lighting for half the price.

    Thanks! Do you think something else about the aesthetic could be changed to be more appealing? Right now I'm orienting it very closely to normal vandal switch, partially for the "surprise" effect when turning the PC on in front of others.

    Maybe a fillet on the outer edge would look better than a chamfer?
     
  7. LukeD

    LukeD Airflow Optimizer
    Case Designer

  8. hardcore_gamer

    hardcore_gamer electronbender

    Which device are you planning to use for USB interface and LED control ?
     
  9. iFreilicht

    iFreilicht FlexATX Authority
    Thread Starter Gold Supporter

    PIC18F1XK50. Not sure whether 3 or 4 variant.

    Man I don't know, the straight edge looks a little weird to me. I though about making the button touch, too, but feedback is too important for a power button in my opinion.
     
    Hahutzy likes this.
  10. Hahutzy

    Hahutzy Airflow Optimizer

    Yup, it pains me that I have to use the 12mm anti-vandal, because the 16mm's feedback is so great.
     
  11. LukeD

    LukeD Airflow Optimizer
    Case Designer

    I personally don't like the "clicky" feeling of 16mm vandals. They feel like the belong on a case from the 90's.
    I much prefer tactile buttons. But its hard to find a tactile mount through-hole, vandal switch.
    (And by tactile i mean - like the "sync" button on an Xbox controller)
     
  12. iFreilicht

    iFreilicht FlexATX Authority
    Thread Starter Gold Supporter

    That's the kind I'll be using, incidentally :D
     
  13. iFreilicht

    iFreilicht FlexATX Authority
    Thread Starter Gold Supporter

    [​IMG]

    After abandoning Eagle for Kicad, I had to relearn pretty much everything. This is all I managed to make during the past three days or so, after half-finishing and then scrapping a different layout idea.
    KiCad has a great interactive router, but because this board is circular, I can't use it and have to draw every single trace by hand.

    When looking at this picture, keep in mind that it the outer diameter of this PCB is 12.4mm, so it could probably fit on your thumbnail.
     
    Hahutzy, Phuncz and hardcore_gamer like this.
  14. hardcore_gamer

    hardcore_gamer electronbender

    Looking good. What's the current footprint of the LEDs, and trace thickness ?

    Welcome to my life :)

    psm:
    [​IMG]

    After manual fan-out:

    [​IMG]

    And that's just 1/30th of the board. This time I'll just do the analog and RF, and trust the layout engineers with everything else.
     
  15. iFreilicht

    iFreilicht FlexATX Authority
    Thread Starter Gold Supporter

    The LEDs themselves are 1mm x 1.5mm, footprint is a little larger. Trace width is 100µm. I'll pay a little extra for that over 150µm to the PCB manufacturer, but it's very minor and I absolutely need that, because that option also reduces restrings on the vias.

    :D

    That was exactly what I was thinking while I worked on this: "Man manually routing a BGA would suck balls."
     
  16. hardcore_gamer

    hardcore_gamer electronbender

    #56 hardcore_gamer, Oct 31, 2016
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2016
    I don't know the exact dimensions of the diffuser area on the vandal switch, but will it cover all 3 LED circles ? Also, I've had bad experiences with diffusers still showing 3 individual "color dots" instead of properly mixing them. If this happens, you might have to explore smaller LED footprint options.
     
  17. CC Ricers

    CC Ricers King of Cable Management
    Silver Supporter

    I did not know there existed 12mm vandal-proof switches. I thought the standards sizes were 16mm and 20mm, not 12 and 16. I have the 16mm and it looks fine for a 2.5" wide case like the S4 mini, but 12mm would probably look tiny on something like 4" or 6" size cases.

    Building your own LED ring circuit looks very daunting. Here I can barely think about doing much beyond a custom Digispark board with integrated I2C components.
     
  18. Aibohphobia

    Aibohphobia Admin aka James
    Site Staff Kimera Industries

  19. iFreilicht

    iFreilicht FlexATX Authority
    Thread Starter Gold Supporter

    The individual LEDs inside the package are actually much closer together (inside a 0.5mm x 1mm rectangle) and already diffused, but I have quite a bit of distance before reaching the top of the ring, so I think I'll be able get very even colour mixing going. What can help here is an air gap between the top of the LEDs diffuser and the one between the LED and the ring. The geometry of the diffuser can also make a heck of a difference.

    The problem with going smaller is that I need the anode and cathode of every single LED to be exposed individually, so I can't go for the smaller four-pin common anode or common cathode packages. The only way to go even smaller would be to use individual LEDs in teeny tiny packages, which makes finding a PCB assembler a bit harder.

    The S4 definitely was motivating the decision of going for 16mm, but I also saw that size being frequently used in mods where people mod a case to use one or more vandal switches. And of course the fact that 16mm was the smallest possible size that allowed 12 LEDs to be used.

    It was at first, but there are so many great resources to help you with online, so it's not really hard, but tedious and time-consuming.
     
  20. ricochet

    ricochet SFF AFFLICTED

    Newbie question here... could this RGB Vandal switch be modded into any case as a primary power switch?