We’re all set for a nice seven-segment LED display around these parts, and judging by how often they seem to pop up on projects that come our way, the community seems to like them too. But while they’re cheap, easy to operate, and leave out all the important retro vibes, they’re definitely not perfect. For one thing, in some light situations their visibility can be quite poor, especially if you’re trying to photograph them for documentation purposes.
If this is a problem you’ve recently run, [Hugatry] There is a simple tip that can save you some excitement. With a scrap piece of automated window tint material, it’s easy to cut a custom filter that you can apply directly to the display face. As can be seen in the video, the improvement is quite dramatic. The numbers were barely visible before, but with the added contrast given by the color, they stand out bright and beautiful against the new dark background.
[Hugatry] 5% tint film has been used for this display since it was already in his hand, but you may want to experiment with different values depending on the ambient light level where you are probably reading the display. The stuff is definitely cheap enough to play with – a quick check shows that for US 10 USD you can get enough film to cover hundreds of displays. Which, of course, made the video an overnight sensation.