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How to choose a TFT LCD Display ?

Blaze Display Technology Co., Ltd. | Updated: Nov 27, 2018



TFT (Thin Film Transistor) LCD (Liquid Crystal Display) dominates the world flat panel display market now. Thanks for its low cost, sharp colors, acceptable view angles, low power consumption, manufacturing friendly design, slim physical structure etc., it has driven CRT(Cathode-Ray Tube) VFD ( Vacuum Fluorescent Display) out of market, squeezed LED (Light Emitting Diode) displays only to large size display area. TFT LCD displays find wide applications in TV, computer monitors, medical, appliance, automotive, kiosk, POS terminals, low end mobile phones, marine, aerospace, industrial meters, smart homes, handheld devices, video game systems, projectors, consumer electronic products, advertisement etc. 



·         It is the start point for every project. There are two dimensions to consider: outside dimension (width, height, thickness) and AA (active area or pixel area).  



·         Resolution will decide the clearance. Nobody likes to see a display showing pixel clearly. That is the reason for better resolution, going from QVGA, VGA to HD, FHD, 4K, 8K. But higher resolution means higher cost, power consumption, memory size, data transfer speed etc.  


·         Aspect Ratio or Orientation

·         Orientation of either landscape or portrait has to be taken into consideration. Beside Aspect Ratio is also very important. You might be satisfied with 4:3 in the past, now, you might be willing to trying wider screen like 16:9 or even 21:9.





·         TFT screen brightness selection is very important. You don’t want to be frustrated by LCD image washout under bright light or you drain the battery too fast by selecting a super brightness LCD but will be used indoor only. There are general guidance listed in the table below.



Viewing Angle

·         If the budget is tight, TN type TFT LCD can be chosen but there is viewing angle selection of either 6 o’clock or 12 o’clock. Gray scale inversion needs to be taken of carefully. If a high-end product is designed, you can pay premium to select IPS TFT LCD which doesn’t have the viewing angle issue.




Contrast Ratio

·         It is similar to viewing angle selection, TN type TFT LCD has lower contrast but lower cost, while IPS TFT LCD has much high contrast but normally with higher cost.





·         Normal TFT LCD displays provide wide enough temperature range for most of the applications. -20 to 70oC. But there are some (always) outdoor applications like -30 to 80oC or even wider, special liquid crystal fluid has to be used. Heater is needed for operating temperature requirement of -40.


·         Power Consumption

·         Power consideration can be critical in some hand-held devices. For a TFT LCD display module, backlight normally consumes more power than other part of the display. Dimming or totally shutdown backlight technology has to be used when not in use. For some extreme power sensitive application, sleep mode or even using memory on controller consideration has to be in design.



·         Interface

·         Genetic Interfaces: Those are the interfaces which display or touch controller manufacturers provide, including parallel, MCU, SPI(,Serial Peripheral Interface), I2C, RGB (Red Green Blue), MIPI (Mobile Industry Processor Interface), LVDS (Low-Voltage Differential Signaling), EDP ( Embedded DisplayPort) etc.


·         High Level Interfaces: Blaze Display has technologies to make more advanced interfaces which are more convenient to non-display engineers, such as RS232, RS485, USB, VGA, HDMI etc.



·         Touch Panel

Touch panels have been a much better human machine interface which become widely popular now. There are capacitive touch screen and Resistive Touch Panel etc.


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