So much information comes from to us today from some kind of a display. Information is just bits flipped one way or another, until that piece of information is shown to someone, it is silent. Modern displays are mostly LCD or some type of a projector. Displays that use LCDs or any kind of projector or flat panel, employ a subtractive technology where a bright white light source is positioned behind an LCD panel. The LCD shutters subtract away light and only allow the correct wavelengths (colors), at the correct brightness levels to get through for each pixel. The backlighting used has traditionally been various types of fluorescent and other light sources. In recent years the trend has shifted to using white LEDs as the light source for this backlighting due to their longevity, durability, smaller form factor and lower energy consumption.
Direct view LED displays (DV) are exactly the opposite, they are an additive technology that starts with no light coming out out at all to create a pure black screen. The LED components are mounted on circuit boards and connected by copper traces to driver chips that turn the individual LEDs on and off. The proper amount of light is added to each pixel by varying the average energy (though Pulse Width Modulation) for each of the colors red, green and blue LEDs for each pixel in the display. This creates displays that have much better contrast, better color saturation, better viewing angles, better grey scale, higher brightness levels and much longer lifetime than any other display technology that has been created so far. Also, since the LEDs light turn off and on at a much, much quicker rate than LCD shutters can open and close, images on direct view LED displays are much sharper especially when there is a lot of movement from one frame to the next. And, maybe best of all, since the pixels can be mounted right next to the edges of the display, there are no gaps or bezels between the display modules, none.
There are currently technical limits on how close these LED pixels and the associated hardware can get to each other, which means that for now, only larger displays can be but with DV LED i. e. 110" or greater diagonal for a 1080p are practical as of right now. OLED technology has bridged this gap by actually printing components on a surface to create displays that allow pixels to be very close to each other to make smaller displays. This technology is not nearly as bright as DV LED, but does have the enhanced contrast due to the additive process used in building the colors by starting with a black screen. You are seeing OLED in watches, phones and very expensive televisions.
The DV LED technology is also being used for smaller, irregularly shaped displays that need to be bright, colorful, longer lasting an some of the other distinguishing characteristics. This is due to the small modular building blocks of DV LED, typically about 1/2 meter square modules that can be placed in any configuration that the user desires.
Not that way for too much longer - New advances in LED technology are continually opening up the possibilities for direct view LED displays of smaller sizes and less expensive price tags. Advances in SMD (Surface Mount Device) and COB (Chip On Board) technologies will open up even more applications for this near perfect Direct View LED display technology. LED is going to be a great train to ride for many miles to come, jump on board with me and lets enjoy the journey knowing that the destination will always keep moving as we chase it.
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Above is a 1.5mm video display showing a drawing of a curved display.
Below is 1.9mm in a 640 pixel wide by 360 pixel high format with a touch screen added.
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Above is a 1.9mm in a full 2K format (3840 pixels wide by 1080 pixels high.
Below is a 1.9mm in a full 4K format (3840 x 2160)
LEDs have taken over almost all applications where electric lights are needed. These little solid state light bulbs are truly amazing. They are rugged, last almost forever, use very little power and they waste almost no energy as heat. From watches to computer screens to billboards, and almost everything in between, virtually every display uses LEDs in one way or another. Either using them to create a light source behind an LCD panel or using them grouped together as the pixels themselves, LEDs are the driving force in almost all electronic display technology made today. To make LCD displays, they use white LEDs as the light source installed behind or on the edges of the LCD glass the circuits are attached to. The LCD cells block the colors of light that should NOT be shown for each color of each pixel, in the display leaving only the desired colors of light to pass through the LCD glass panel for that pixel. This is how the images are shown on LCD screens, basically, starting with a white LED light (which contains all of the colors) and only allowing the right colors to come through the LCD panel for each color of each pixel in the display (2,073,600 pixels in a 1080p).
With Direct View LED displays, each pixel has 3 LEDs; one each of red, green and blue. Using computer circuitry, the amount of light each of the LEDs emits is controlled at up to 4,000 shades between 0 to 100% brightness. Just like drops of paint into a paint bucket, each change in the composition of the light from the LEDs creates a different color of the rainbow. This additive method gives the viewer a much better image with the colors looking a lot more natural to the human eye. Using the 3 basic colors, the displays can create more colors can be seen than on any other technology that is currently available. AND, since the LEDs do not emit any light when they are turned off, the blacks are nearly perfect so the contrast on this technology is amazing!! With LCD technology, some light escapes thru the area around the pixel which creates a grey instead of a black background . With the extreme brightness of the LEDs available, displays can now be used outdoors as well as indoors opening brand new applications to use display technology.
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