Build Guide: Computer Setup

Computer, Projector, and Electronics Setup

 There are three primary types of connections we need to consider when setting up the computer, projector, and sensor connections: power sources, USB signal, and video signal.  Before we dive in, I'll provide a rough schematic.

Schematic of power, usb, and hdmi connections between screen sensor, projector, usb hub, and computer

Let's start with the most complex of the connections, the USB signal.  If things were simple, we could simply plug the screen sensor into the computer and it would work.  However, because of the size of the sensor, I have found it performs better if we put a powered USB hub between the computer and the sensor. This essentially acts as a power booster as a direct electrical connection can provide more power (and more reliably provide it) than your computer's USB power.  The cord on your USB hub would then normally connect to your laptop, but the cord will not be nearly long enough to reach the shooting line.  So instead, the hub plugs into a USB extension which then plugs into your computer.

With the addition of the powered USB hub, there are now three components that require a power source: the laptop, the projector, and the USB hub.  For my set up, it made the most sense to run one extension cord down to my range to around where the projector is set up.  Then using a 3 way splitter, I plugged in the projector and the USB hub direct to this power cord.  Then from this plug, I daisy chained another extension cord back to the shooting line to power the laptop.

Once everything is plugged in, the only remaining step is to run the HDMI cable between your laptop and projector!

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