Topic: Sony Dash Brightness Hack

I always thought the minimum brightness on the Dash was a bit too high. Years ago I found this "hack" by altering the factory calibration of the ambient light sensor and display. It works great - at night the Dash adds barely any light to the room but is easily readable at 18"" from my head.

Im not exactly sure where this came from originally, its in my notebook now. perhaps the forum post at designstudioschool dot com.

Reposting here for reference:

It's best to do this at nightime, or in a dark room. The dimness setting is on screen 12.

1. Open Notepad on your PC
2. Save the empty file as "fi_inspection", save as type "all files"
3. Copy the file to a blank USB disk, and insert into the usb port of the Dash and wait a minute or 2.
4. Unplug the power from the Dash, wait a minute, then plug back in.
5. In a minute or 2 the Dash should boot to a final inspection screen.

Do the following:

Press the green arrow.

Screen 1: press all the "dots" until they are all gone, press and hold your finger in the red circle until the next screen shows.
Screen 2: press volume + twice
Screen 3: press volume - twice
Screen 4: press snooze button twice
Screen 5: pick up the Dash and move the red ball to the 3 areas
Screen 6: filp the Dash upside down and back
you should see a green arrow, press it.
Screen 7: insert any 1/8" phono jack into to the headphone jack of the Dash.
Screen 8: Press the red button next to "Microphone"
wait a few seconds until the progress bar finishes. Then press the button next to "headphone"

unplug the phono jack

Screen 9: Press left speaker button. When sound has finished, press the right speaker button.
Screen 10: Turn off the lights in the room. When the "low lux" is zero, press the low lux button. Wait a few seconds for the green smiley face. Turn on the room light and hold the Dash so that the "high lux" will max out, and while it's maxed out press the high lux button.
Screen 11: just press "confirm", wait about 30 seconds for the green arrow, and press it.
Screen 12: Here is where you adjust the dimness. Turn off the lights in the room. Press the "-" button until the screen goes black, then press the "+" just until you see the faint screen. The increments are small so go back and forth with the "-" and "+" as many times as needed until you're happy. It's best to let your eyes adjust to the darkness of the room for final setting. When the low level is correct, press "confirm", wait about 20-30 seconds for the screen to go bright, then press the green arrow.
Screen 13: test all 3 backlight settings, off, dimmest, brightest. Press green arrow.

Press "finish", and turn your lights back on.

The Dash will reboot. It will ask to confirm your network. Follow the screens. When it's all booted up, you'll have to set reset your time zone. In the "menu" go to "time / date", press edit clock, select time zone. Remove the usb disk.

That should do it. It's still just a tiny bit too lit for my taste, but much better than it was out of the box. It's really easier than it's written, but I wanted to spell it out. I hope this is helpful.

Best Regards

Re: Sony Dash Brightness Hack

um... would a slider that goes all the way to 'barely perceptible' in night mode be good enough?
http://files.chumby.com/dashpix/dash8.jpg

you have to look really close... that's my 'night sky' notebook background behind it, room lights off.
http://files.chumby.com/dashpix/dash7.jpg

Cleaning up any loose bits and bytes.

Re: Sony Dash Brightness Hack

I know the B70 doesn't get dark enough at the minimum Night Mode slider. My C10s are dimmer enough at minimum slider. Thanks for your efforts.

Re: Sony Dash Brightness Hack

Is this brightness hack still possible with the new Chumby software installed?

I would love to dim my C10 below it's current minimum setting.

Re: Sony Dash Brightness Hack

I think it will still work, but I haven't tried it.  You'll need to use a dongle that does not have the chumby software on it, since it's likely to conflict.

6 (edited by Mr. Neato 2017-10-22 13:31:59)

Re: Sony Dash Brightness Hack

It looks like this hack may not be possible post-Chumbyfication. 

Using the same FAT 1GB dongle I used to install Chumby, emptied of all but a blank "fi_inspection" file, my C10 just boots into Chumby as normal.  3 attempts, no final inspection screen.

If anyone else has any success, please let me know.

Re: Sony Dash Brightness Hack

Works for me.

Sony Yume Final Inspection
MP test version 3.4.0 May 25, 2010
etc etc

The microphone test records a bit and the headphone test plays it back. big_smile
The speaker test plays loud tones. Wish I hadn't done this after midnight!

Re: Sony Dash Brightness Hack

valageron wrote:

Works for me.

Sony Yume Final Inspection
MP test version 3.4.0 May 25, 2010
etc etc

The microphone test records a bit and the headphone test plays it back. big_smile
The speaker test plays loud tones. Wish I hadn't done this after midnight!

Nice!  I'll try again this evening... before midnight wink

Re: Sony Dash Brightness Hack

Well I got a little further than I did last time, but still no joy.

At boot, I'm greeted with this screen..

https://i.imgur.com/7UpzCox.jpg

No "green arrow".

Tapping on the screen or pressing the top buttons does not seem to do anything.  The clock at the top/left just keeps ticking away.

Re: Sony Dash Brightness Hack

Interesting - I have some very old source code for this, and the reason the button isn't showing up is because of the "bind = [NO]" thing you're seeng on the screen - all of those things should be "[YES]" for an end-user production device.  I'm not sure what that actually means, but I'll investigate.  It may be that there's something odd with this device and how it was bound to Sony's systems.

Re: Sony Dash Brightness Hack

Duane wrote:

Interesting - I have some very old source code for this, and the reason the button isn't showing up is because of the "bind = [NO]" thing you're seeng on the screen - all of those things should be "[YES]" for an end-user production device.  I'm not sure what that actually means, but I'll investigate.  It may be that there's something odd with this device and how it was bound to Sony's systems.

Thanks, Duane. 

I've used my C10 for 6+ years, purchased as a refurb from woot.com.  I never let Sony install the 1.7.1604 update by just keeping my Dash in night/clock mode until Sony finally closed the service completely a couple weeks ago.

I wonder if by still running 1.7.1526 & connected to Sony when Sony pulled the plug, that somehow nerf'd the Dash?