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  #31  
Old 10-14-2014, 07:04 PM
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Inheritance Inheritance is offline
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Originally Posted by emiljensen2 View Post
The keyboard in the video could be a prototype with bigger memory space. (Based off the fact that they say animations can't be saved to the on-board memory due to memory space)
It could also be software sending it to the keyboard, but why tone down the color range afterwards.

I'm surprised we haven't been updated on this yet.
Another keyboard producer with RGB keyboard does apparently utilize 16.8m colors, or at least way closer than corsair's RGB's.
Could they have been using LUA rather then CUE but havent released LUA for some reason?
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  #32  
Old 10-14-2014, 09:18 PM
CalcProgrammer1 CalcProgrammer1 is offline
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Originally Posted by zheren159 View Post
Could they have been using LUA rather then CUE but havent released LUA for some reason?
Unless there's a secret USB command set hiding in the keyboard we don't know about, most likely no. Lua is still PC-side scripting so in the end anything you do in Lua ends up turning into USB commands that go to the keyboard. Since we know that the USB command set only offers 3-bit-per-channel lighting the only way to change it would be a different USB command set or by running scripts on the keyboard's internal processor directly (which they claim it has limited memory, so this likely won't happen).
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  #33  
Old 10-14-2014, 10:34 PM
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Originally Posted by CalcProgrammer1 View Post
Unless there's a secret USB command set hiding in the keyboard we don't know about, most likely no. Lua is still PC-side scripting so in the end anything you do in Lua ends up turning into USB commands that go to the keyboard. Since we know that the USB command set only offers 3-bit-per-channel lighting the only way to change it would be a different USB command set or by running scripts on the keyboard's internal processor directly (which they claim it has limited memory, so this likely won't happen).
yea how hard is it to get a different USB command with 8-bits
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  #34  
Old 10-15-2014, 11:37 AM
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Originally Posted by Flyman View Post
Well that would probably explain some of the instability between the keyboard and the software. Would love to hear some dev input.


Wish they'd release the source code so we could have a crack at fixing what they've apparently failed to fix.
It's starting to sound like CUE was written by devs that didn't have a CLUE, it certainly looks like it from all the crashing, disconnects, freezes and now this. My God this is a gaming keyboard and it crashes when Steam, the biggest gaming platform in the world, starts up. WTF?

The hardware itself is awesome but the software is toasted.

I would love to see some third party devs write some real code to run this thing the way it can and should work. I wouldn't be surprised to see it happen either.
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  #35  
Old 10-15-2014, 11:46 AM
piiman piiman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by emiljensen2 View Post
Another keyboard producer with RGB keyboard does apparently utilize 16.8m colors, or at least way closer than corsair's RGB's.
Yeah but their software is very limited as to what you can do with it light wise. However it does do color changing very smoothly, in fact you can't even see the steps.
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  #36  
Old 10-15-2014, 11:52 AM
CalcProgrammer1 CalcProgrammer1 is offline
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Originally Posted by piiman View Post
It's starting to sound like CUE was written by devs that didn't have a CLUE, it certainly looks like it from all the crashing, disconnects, freezes and now this. My God this is a gaming keyboard and it crashes when Steam, the biggest gaming platform in the world, starts up. WTF?

The hardware itself is awesome but the software is toasted.

I would love to see some third party devs write some real code to run this thing the way it can and should work. I wouldn't be surprised to see it happen either.
Third party devs (i.e. me and some others on Reddit) have written some code. The issue is that we're still constrained to the USB protocol that only supports 3 bits per LED. In that sense it's either not CUE's fault or it's that we got the protocol info from CUE. We would need a new protocol to handle higher color depth, and that means firmware changes on the hardware (unless there's a secret protocol CUE isn't using).
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  #37  
Old 10-15-2014, 12:15 PM
emiljensen2 emiljensen2 is offline
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Originally Posted by piiman View Post
Yeah but their software is very limited as to what you can do with it light wise. However it does do color changing very smoothly, in fact you can't even see the steps.
As far as I'm aware it wasn't advertised that it allowed the same amount of customization that corsair advertised for, however corsair did advertise for 16.8m yet are lacking in that department currently.

Furthermore if people reverse engineered that keyboard like CalcProgrammer1 did with corsair's keyboard's you could use all the colors and have more possibilities than corsair's keyboard.
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  #38  
Old 10-15-2014, 02:29 PM
Digital.Zilla Digital.Zilla is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zheren159 View Post
Could they have been using LUA rather then CUE but havent released LUA for some reason?
Quote:
Originally Posted by CalcProgrammer1
Unless there's a secret USB command set hiding in the keyboard we don't know about, most likely no. Lua is still PC-side scripting so in the end anything you do in Lua ends up turning into USB commands that go to the keyboard.
It depends how they plan to implement the Lua scripting. Depending on how powerful the processor is on the keyboard, it is potentially possible that the Lua code would be interpreted and ran directly on the keyboard's chip instead of on the PC (with resulting data being piped to the keyboard). If that's the case, it would bypass the 3-bit USB limit. This, of course, is extremely wishful thinking... Assuming the chip is a fit-for-purpose display controller (which I think was announced) then I doubt it can run custom software (i.e. not able to run a Lua environment).
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  #39  
Old 10-15-2014, 04:16 PM
CalcProgrammer1 CalcProgrammer1 is offline
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We need a teardown of this thing so we can see exactly what chips are inside. That would clear up the hardware software question pretty quick. My guess is a dedicated LED matrix driver along with a general purpose microcontroller, ARM has been mentioned before, that interfaces the key matrix, LED driver, and USB together. How the Lua implementation works will depend upon the memory and speed of that microcontroller. They already mentioned that the micro doesn't have much memory for HW profiles, so unless the Lua engine is already in the firmware I doubt they'll have room to add it. My guess is that everything continues to be PC-side driven, but being able to run scripts on the keyboard's processor would be great if true. The interface for moving custom data inputs to the embedded side would also be a mess in that case.
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  #40  
Old 10-15-2014, 04:21 PM
Schwinni Schwinni is offline
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Or they update the protocol with a firmware update...
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  #41  
Old 10-15-2014, 05:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Corsair James View Post
The profile from the CES show can't be done on the software at the moment. It may be available in the future though once we make the Lua available.
So James said it [Rainbow Demo Profile] "may" be available when they release LUA... I'm guessing that means that they have yet another tool to control the keyboard other than CUE and/or LUA.
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  #42  
Old 10-15-2014, 05:26 PM
emiljensen2 emiljensen2 is offline
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Originally Posted by zheren159 View Post
Well i havent been disappointed by Corsair in my last 5 years with them so im hoping it doesnt start now. yes kinda a corsair fanboy but then again at least their stuff is good

I hope there is something Hidden in CUE or their working on the 3bit issue
I've had a ax1200 for a few years now, and the keyboard is also nice quality so I like corsair as well.
But a company as big as corsair pulling questionable illegal maneuvers seems completely wrong to me, I highly doubt the hardware can't pull 16.8m colors else why would they plaster the sticker onto the box to begin with?
There's also another keyboard manufacture with 16.8m colors, but they advertise that it is currently limited to 228 colors and future software updates will unlock all colors which makes it legal since they're not falsely advertising.
I'm just disappointed to see how something questionably illegal is receiving such a small amount of response from corsair, despite being on first page everyday since it was created.

Last edited by emiljensen2; 10-15-2014 at 05:31 PM. Reason: reworded last line
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  #43  
Old 10-15-2014, 06:18 PM
Digital.Zilla Digital.Zilla is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alchemyzt View Post
So James said it [Rainbow Demo Profile] "may" be available when they release LUA... I'm guessing that means that they have yet another tool to control the keyboard other than CUE and/or LUA.
the rainbow profile doesn't necessary mean that it will support more than 3 bits per channel. The inability to easily do the rainbow thing across the keyboard is just a limitation of what controls CUE offers. Someone on the forms already painstakingly built the rainbow by using dozens of groups. It's still a 3-bit rainbow though which means that at quick cycle speeds it looks fine but at slow cycle speeds, it looks terrible. Lua won't magically fix this alone if there's still a 3-bit limitation.
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  #44  
Old 10-15-2014, 07:07 PM
CalcProgrammer1 CalcProgrammer1 is offline
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[PURE EE DETECTIVE SPECULATION MODE ON]

I'm not about to tear down a $170 keyboard to see what chips are inside, but from marketing (aka the side of the box) we know it has:

* 32-bit ARM processor

and

* Panasonic display controller

Now, I did a search for Panasonic LED matrix ICs, their website lists 20 results.

http://industrial.panasonic.com/www-...+CCA7000+5++WW

Of those results, only 13 are actually matrix drivers. The K70 RGB is almost certainly a matrix due to the number of LEDs (111 LEDs x3 for R/G/B, but up to like 24 more per channel on the K95 RGB). Of those matrix drivers, only one has enough channels to even come close, the AN32181B, which supports a 12x12 matrix. If you remember my reverse engineering, I came up with 144 total slots. 12x12 = 144! I think I'm on to something here.

Here is the AN32181B datasheet:

http://www.semicon.panasonic.co.jp/ds4/AN32181B_E.pdf

Unfortunately, it is only a single channel driver, so the datasheet says it's good for up to 48 RGB LEDs. BUT WAIT! The USB protocol clearly splits up red, green, and blue channels into discrete blocks, so it's entirely possible they are using three of these ICs, one per channel. So, what does this chip's actual PWM controller look like?

Here's a screenshot from the PDF's register map:



So what do we have here? If this is the actual chip used, it's pretty darn revealing of what's going on. The chip appears to have 7 PWM drivers, LED1-7, which are matrixed into all 144 LEDs. Each PWM driver has a 4-bit brightness register. Each LED in the matrix has its own "selection" register which chooses which one of the 7 PWM drivers is used to light that LED. The byte layout of these LEDSELx registers matches the USB protocol perfectly (including that there are 72 LEDSEL registers and 72 bytes in each color block). The PWMxCTL registers set a 6-bit PWM value per PWM driver. This gives a total possible bit depth of 6+4, though not completely as there is likely a lot of overlap between low-brightess and low-PWM values.

So, if my hunch is correct and Corsair is using this IC, I believe the PWM drivers are all set to fixed values, in increments of 1/8 from 0 to 100%. Instead of writing PWM values over the USB port, you're actually writing selection values, which selects one of 7 fixed-PWM values for the LED. Since the controller does not actually store a PWM value per-LED and instead only per-controller, actually making each key 8-bit would involve rewriting the PWM channel register very very quickly as it scans the matrix, something that is likely not happening (and dare I say impossible?). The hardware brightness key would then change either the brightness register or scale the 7 PWM channels in a way that adjusts the 7-step scale linearly, which is how it can theoretically generate more than 7 levels though not on different keys simultaneously.

Again, NONE OF THIS IS CONFIRMED, it's just my quick electronics engineering detective investigation given the limited information we have available, but this puzzle fits together all too well. If someone has already ripped the logo off their K70 (or K65/K95) to reveal the screw likely hidden beneath it and wants to completely tear it down I'd really love to know if this is indeed the chip being used. As far as I can tell it's the only Panasonic LED matrix IC that fits the bill.

Last edited by CalcProgrammer1; 10-15-2014 at 07:12 PM.
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  #45  
Old 10-15-2014, 07:50 PM
TellarHK TellarHK is offline
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I actually saw a review a few days ago that had a teardown for one of these keyboards, and gave the part number for the ARM processor inside. It's an ARM CORTEX-M0 based chip running at up to 50MHz. The speed of the CPU on the keyboard was not listed, but it did show a 12MHz oscillator which matched one in a development board for the same CPU.

The limiting factor would be the 128K of Flash ROM, and I believe 10K and 4K of either programmable memory or working RAM, I'm not sure which was which. I'd look for that information but am running short on time for now. It's out there if someone wants to look. I get the sense that the CPU will be plenty fast, but the RAM limitation is going to be the critical component, and this may have something to do with the inability to save profiles as they work on fixing firmware issues.
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