How To Fix Optoma HD20 / HD200x Projector Flickering Image / Colour Wheel
A HD20 projector
This guide will help you solve the problem of your HD20 / HD200x projector flickering blue / green. These projectors are the same internally, one has a black case and one has a white case, so this guide works for both.
I have had my Optoma HD20 projector for a couple of years now and have put about 2500 hrs on the lamp. It was fine up until recently, when after about 20 minutes or so, the colours on screen would start flickering. This is how I fixed it.
What I did at first was turn the projector to high altitude mode. This does work in the short term but it's obviously not a long term solution. What you really need to do is clean all the dust out from inside and clean the colour wheel. You can only do this by taking it apart.
Before I did it I was a bit nervous about dismantling it, but it was actually really easy and the fix worked perfectly. I took some photos while I did it and I have written this guide in the hope of helping some other owners out.
Why is it flickering?
The problem is that over time dust builds up inside the projector. This stops it from working properly. To get it to work again, you have to clean the dust from as many places as you can, but specifically from the colour wheel.
The colour wheel is the part that the lamp shines through to give you the colour on screen. The technical side of how it all works isn't really important, you just need to know that dust all over this part is a bad thing.
I read about other guides where people used compressed air sprays, but this didn't seem to make sense to me. You're trying to remove dust, not just blow it about. That's why I used a vacuum cleaner, to suck the dust away rather than just move it.
- A small headed Philips screwdriver.
- Some lens cleaning tissues, typically used for cleaning camera lens. These won't scratch the wheel or lens. If you don't have any, buy some, don't scrimp with an old sock or something as it won't do the job properly.
- A butter knife to help tease open the clips.
- A vacuum cleaner, ideally one that has some decent sucking power, so empty it before you start!
- Some patience.
To clean it, just follow these steps.
Step 1. Unplug it and put it onto a clean surface. If you've had it on, then leave it some time to cool down before you start fiddling. There are three screws that you'll need to undo, they are labelled on the next photo.
Take these out
The next thing to do is to take the lamp out. To do this you need to open the lamp flap and pull it out. To do this just undo the two screws. One of them is underneath the sticker telling you to read the manual. Pierce the sticker and undo it.
Undo this screw and the one under the sticker to the left
After you've done this, then pop the flap open and undo the screws that hold the lamp in. There are two. You can see from my photo how dusty the lamp was, so I knew there'd be a fair bit of dust inside. My projector is mounted on the ceiling, so although I thought it would be fine up there, over time it had obviously sucked a fair bit in.
Only undo these two, ignore the others
After you've undone those screws, then just pull the lamp out like this.
The next stage is to take off the lens adjustment cover. This simply pulls off. Once you take it off, you'll see that there are three screws in there that fit into the recessed parts of the cover. It's pretty self explanatory but you just have to line the screws up when you put it back on.
Just pull this part straight off
After this, you get to the exciting part, which is taking the top off. This is actually pretty easy. I used a butter knife and put it in between the case from the back. This then pulls apart. I then lifted the top off, lifting it upwards and forwards with a bit of wiggling, to undo the clips that hold the front on. If you take your time you shouldn't break anything.
Once the case is undone, then you need to undo the ribbon connector, that connects the buttons on the top of the case with the mainboard. This is pretty easy to do, the ribbon is held in place by a black clip down clip that clicks into place. You just need a fingernail or something to flick it up and the ribbon then comes out.
This is the clip
Use something like this to wipe the colour wheel
Taking the ribbon out is actually pretty easy, unfortunately my photo skills weren't great with this part, but just flick up the black clip and take the top off the projector.
Once you have taken that off, then you want to get your vacuum cleaner and give everything in there a good clean. I stuck a pencil into both fans to stop them spinning and got the vacuum cleaner as close as I could. The next part is to wipe the colour wheel with the lens cleaner. I've labelled it on the photo. This part was covered in dust, you can put the lens cleaner tissue against it and spin the wheel with your finger to clean off both sides.
Clean the dust from everywhere, using your vacuum cleaner/wipes on the wheel & lens
There is a close up of a colour wheel below, so you can see which part you need to clean. The dust wiped off it pretty easily. While I was wiping stuff, I also cleaned the lens as this had a bit of dust on it.
This is what the colour wheel looks like
After you have done this, then simply reassemble the projector by putting the lamp back in, the top back on, put the ribbon back under the black clip, pop it back down and then clip it together. Then put the lens cover on. The whole thing popped back together easier than it came apart.
That's it! Once I did this my projector started working properly again. No more flickering and I can watch films and game again. I can't take any responsibility for yours, but if yours has stopped flickering recently, you have very little to lose by following this guide and it will only take you 15 minutes or so. Just take your time and try not break anything!
Hopefully this will see me through another couple of thousand hours and as it cost nothing, then it was definitely a worthwhile fix.
Good luck and thanks for reading. If you have any questions or comments, please leave them below.