DIY Transparent Screens

Notes on DIY Transparent screens

You can modify an existing LCD monitor to be transparent by opening up the monitor and removing the backlight yourself. Insert boilerplate copy about how you should not attempt this without understanding that you may completely break your screen or cause personal injury/electrocution and the author assumes no responsibility — please be cautious and safe.
Speaking from personal experience, this is a difficult modification to perform on monitors from the factory, quite simply because they are not designed to be used this way. I have done this to 4 or 5 different LCD screens and there is a tremendous amount of variability in how different manufacturers assemble their screens, so there is not a consistent guide that would work for each screen. You may be able to open the screen up, but that may require breaking the internal plastic tabs that hold it together — ensuring that you can’t quite put it together again. You must also go very slowly to ensure you aren’t going to crack the screen or rip or damage the delicate electronics inside.
Once you have it opened up, the backlight and LCD screen are often sandwiched together with a metal frame that must be carefully wedged off. One of the long edges of the LCD panel is going to have a very fragile thin plastic flex cable that traverses the whole side. This flex cable essentially controls each column of pixels individually, so if any part of it gets damaged, you may lose that part of the screen or the screen entirely. Removing this element and its PCB from the rest of the case and the backlight is probably the hardest part of the whole process. Additionally, some screens have an additional diffusion film that is bonded to their polarizer for the purpose of improving viewing angles — unfortunately, this layer makes content behind the screens get completely blurred out.
They used to sell things like transparent LCD’s before they could make affordable high definition LCD panels that can fit in today’s projectors. They were sold as bulky glass panels that could be connected to a computer and placed on top of an overhead projector.
Also worth noting a total DIY method making LCD's: