Television Display Technologies
The world of television display technologies has taken a massive turn and is transforming how we consume entertainment. From the old-school cathode ray tubes to the sleek modern wonders of OLED and QLED, understanding the nuances of various TV display technologies enables us to choose the right one for each individual.
Firstly, we need to determine each technology’s definitions and differences. Let’s begin at the dawn of televisions.
1. Cathode Ray Tube (CRT)
The cathode ray tube (CRT) represents the origin of television technology. These hefty displays functioned by firing electron beams onto a phosphorescent screen, producing the images we enjoyed. Although CRT TVs are now largely obsolete due to their size and energy inefficiency, they laid the foundation for the digital age of television.
2. Liquid Crystal Display (LCD)
Liquid crystal display (LCD) technology revolutionised the TV market, overtaking its former model, the CRT. The LCD TV harnesses liquid crystals to regulate the passage of light, resulting in crisper images and sleeker designs. They boasted improved resolution, lower energy consumption and more remarkable thinness than their CRT counterparts. However, LCDs suffered from poor contrast ratios and restricted viewing angles.
3. Plasma Display
The plasma display is an often forgotten gem in the TV technology timeline. It ignites tiny cells filled with noble gases to produce ultraviolet light, stimulating phosphors to generate coloured light. Plasma TVs offered superior black levels, high contrast ratios, and excellent colour accuracy. They also provided wide viewing angles, making them a preferred choice for larger rooms. However, plasma displays were bulky, power-hungry, and prone to “burn-in,” where static images left a lasting impression on the screen.
4. LED LCD (Light Emitting Diode Liquid Crystal Display)
Building on the foundations of LCD technology, LED LCD TVs brought LEDs into the mix as backlight sources. This advancement allowed for more precise control over brightness and energy efficiency. The two main categories are edge-lit and direct-lit LED LCD TVs, offering varying levels of backlighting control and picture quality. LED LCD TVs improved contrast ratios and colour vibrancy compared to traditional LCDs. Yet, they still struggled to achieve the deep blacks of plasma and OLED displays.
5. OLED (Organic Light Emitting Diode)
OLED technology ushered in a new era of TV displays. Each pixel emits light in OLED TVs, delivering accurate black levels and unparalleled contrast ratios and producing exceptional image quality and vivid colours. OLED displays are thin, flexible, and provide wider viewing angles. Manufacturers’ advancements continually address the concerns about burn-in and relatively higher costs.
6. QLED (Quantum Dot LED)
QLED TVs combine LED backlighting with quantum dot technology, boosting colour accuracy, brightness, and energy efficiency. Quantum dots are minuscule semiconductor particles that emit specific colours when illuminated. QLEDs offer an alternative to OLED, excelling in well-lit environments and providing vibrant visuals. While their black levels might not match OLEDs, they are less susceptible to burn-in.
As we travel through the evolution of TV display technologies, we will continue to encounter each innovation’s unique attributes and drawbacks. When shopping for a new TV, weigh your preferences for contrast ratios, colour accuracy, viewing angles, and budget. The wide array of TV display technologies ensures a perfect choice for everyone, whether captivated by the sleek marvels of modern OLEDs or the robust quality of plasma displays.