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       Hello everyone and thank you for taking the time to read my guide!!  The reason I'm writing this little piece is because I've noticed that there is A LOT of confusion surrounding the cell phone replacement part called a 'digitizer' or sometimes called 'LCD digitizer'.  So, what exactly is a digitizer or LCD digitizer?  Well, hopefully to end most of the confusion, it IS NOT an LCD.  The LCD (Liquid Crystal Display) is like a super thin and fragile computer monitor, it's the source of the image displayed on your phone.  The digitizer by definition is a device used to convert analog signals into digitial signals.  In the case of our cell phones, this device would be the glass that covers the LCD.  Yes, the glass piece that is attached to the LCD is the digitizer... or sometimes called LCD digitizer.  It converts your actions (press, swipe, etc) into a digital signal that your phone understands.  The data from the digitizer (glass) is transferred to the phone by the attached digitizer flex cable or digitizer flex ribbon, that should be included in your purchase of a replacement LCD digitizer.  It's pretty difficult to preserve the integrity of the flex cable when there is a digitizer replacement performed.  So, when we have an LCD assembly, minus small parts and frames, we're looking at 3 major components... 1) the digitizer (front glass), 2) the digitizer flex cable (should be attached to the glass) and 3) the LCD display unit.  All 3 of these components can be purchased separately or all together.  Although, I wouldn't recommend to anyone that they purchase the digitizer without the digitizer flex cable.  Mounting the flex cable can be tricky with some phones and if not done correctly will give you poor functionality of your touch screen LCD.
        How do you know when you need to replace the digitizer or LCD screen?  If you've damaged the digitizer (cracked the glass, too many scratches or scuff marks) and you still have an imaged displayed you can get away with a digitizer replacement in most cases.  But if you've damaged the digitizer and no longer have a image, this means you've most likely cracked the thin and fragile LCD display unit as well and for this there is no fix.  An LCD assembly replacement will be needed.
        Since I've mentioned that it is possible to perform a digitizer replacement for a working LCD display unit, I feel the responsibility to also tell everyone reading this and considering this repair... IT IS VERY, VERY DIFFICULT WITH SOME PHONES!!  In some cases, it is seeming to become more of a common practice with cell phone manufactures, the digitizer (glass) is fuzed together with the LCD unit.  This means by appearance, the 2 separate pieces are 1 and will not separate without some experienced negotiating.  These units are made by machines, the are put together by machines and are best taken apart by machines LBVS!  But, these machines are very expensive and I still haven't found a place in the US that has them.  So, our next option in an attempt to save some money, is to attempt the separation ourselves BUT BE WARNED... like I've mentioned a couple of times already, the LCD unit is practically toilet paper thin and very, very fragile and the chances of damaging it are very high.  There are some people with some skills and have success with this repair, I advice anyone that hasn't done it before to seek out 1 of these individuals for the repair, but even then hope for the best and plan for the worst just in case things don't go as planned with the repair.  And don't blame the supposed tech, it's a very difficult task with a high rate of failure even for the most experienced.  It is a machines task.
       Well, I hope that covers it pretty well.  Now we all know what a LCD digitizer is when we see it listed on eBay and when we find ourselves in a position of needing an LCD digitizer replacement.  I really hope this helps a lot understand what some of the different components of these complex super phones we play around with everyday.  If I can edit this guide in the near future, I will include some pictures to further demonstrate what these components are.  

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