Imagine if you took that digital camera that you dropped and broke the lens but it still reads memory cards and does photo slide shows on its little screen. If you take the backlight off the LCD you can project light through it so if you could fit it inside a cheap slide projector, you'd have a wall-sized digital photo frame.
I already had a slide projector from my $6 lens Instructable but I didn't have a spare digital camera to sacrifice so I decided to do a "proof of concept" projector using the backlight of the ipod as the light source. Of course it was never going to be very bright but hopefully someone will take the idea and run with it.
Step 1: Basic Concepts
I'd love to use all of this, but as I said in the introduction, I don't have a spare LCD to project so I'm using my "hand-me-up" Ipod Nano as my light source, reflector, diffuser & LCD. This simplifies the process significantly as I just need to place the Ipod in the focal plane and then do some tidying up. I think an Ipod with a larger screen and adjustable brightness (or hacked super-brightness) would be even better.
If you are old enough to remember using a slide projector, you put the slides in upside-down and back-to-front for them to be projected right side up and front-to-front.
Luckily the Ipod easily fits upside-down but the back-to-front proved impossible. You'll see later that it's pretty obvious the projected images are reversed.
Step 2: Tidying Up
If you do use the projector's light source, don't cover any of the vents. You will need all of them to be open to keep the heat from building up.
Step 3: Testing
Hopefully I'll find a suitable donor camera or MP4 player and actually use the projector's light source.