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Sony shows 55-inch prototype using new "Crystal LED Display" technology


January 9, 2012

Sony's new Crystal LED Display prototype produces an image using a layer millions of LEDs

Sony's new Crystal LED Display prototype produces an image using a layer millions of LEDs

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While OLED may have staked a claim as the next generation display technology to beat, Sony has chosen CES 2012 to unveil a new display technology called "Crystal LED." Instead of an LED or CCFL backlight shining through an LCD layer to produce an image, the Crystal LED display technology is a true LED TV that uses a layer of tiny self-emitting LEDs to directly produce the image - think of it like a high resolution shrunk down JumboTron like those found at sporting stadiums.

With each pixel in the 1080 x 1920 Full HD resolution display made up of a red, green and blue LED, the 55-inch prototype model on display at CES uses over six million individual LEDs to create an image. Sony says mounting the LED light source directly on the front of the display results in greater light use efficiency and produces higher contrast images in both light and dark viewing conditions. It also produces a wider color gamut and wider viewing angles compared to existing LCD and plasma displays.

In fact, the display's technical specifications list a brightness of approx. 400 cd/m2, a color gamut of more than 100 percent compared to NTSC, a viewing angle of 180 degrees, and a contrast in dark environments that is "more than measurable limit values." Additionally, Sony says the prototype display has a video response time that is 10 times faster than its current LCD models.

While the Japanese electronics giant says it will continue development of OLED TVs, it will be working in parallel to develop and commercialize its new Crystal LED Display technology with an eye on both professional and consumer products.

Here's a video from Sony detailing the new technology - somewhat embarrassingly, the audio cuts out half way through.

About the Author
Darren Quick Darren's love of technology started in primary school with a Nintendo Game & Watch Donkey Kong (still functioning) and a Commodore VIC 20 computer (not still functioning). In high school he upgraded to a 286 PC, and he's been following Moore's law ever since. This love of technology continued through a number of university courses and crappy jobs until 2008, when his interests found a home at Gizmag. All articles by Darren Quick

finally, a true LED display. LED-backlit displays shouldn\'t be allowed to be called LED, they are still LCD.



This kind of display is the future. Good time to buy Sony stock...


I think it\'s cool that it\'s a TRUE LED, but just because there are now individual led\'s, does it necessarily translate into a better image? Personally, I don\'t really care what kinda technology is being used, I just care about the quality of the image. However that is achieved is irrelevant to me. That\'s why I\'m 100% happy with my $1,000 60\" 3D Mitsubishi DLP. The video quality looks just as good as any $4,000 led I\'ve seen at Best Buy

Walter Costescu

The advantage of this system is that there is no light absorption anywhere. Where there is black in the image,there is no light being produced. With an LCD screen, most but not all of the light is obscured by the filtering effect of the crystal display. That is why it is not a true black. Also, the viewing angle is 180°. There does not seem to be any information regarding the thickness of the display, but presumably this is similar to an OLED. Is there a similarity between True LED, and plasma? I imagine the energy consumption would be less.


Where\'s the novelty? Just another LED whether it\'s O-rganic or not.

Andrej Radoš

lol OLED has nothing to with organic at all lol

Facebook User

I have been advocating a direct LED display for years. I figured the quantum dot LED display would be the ideal thing. Don\'t know how similar this crystal LED display is to quantum dot led display, but it\'s probably not a coincidence. I\'m all for it. No need for backlights, filters or polarizers. Of course, OLEDs paved the way for LEDs but if they had listened to me that step could have been eliminated. This display technology could spell the end of all other display technologies. I live in cold country and I\'ve seen several instances of LCD based displays being damaged by exposure to extreme cold. A true LED display would be much hardier. In fact, you\'ve seen those LED signs that are so popular? We have a bunch of them up here. I only wish they would use square/rectangular LEDs instead of round ones. Round ones leave too much dead space between LEDs and looks worse the closer you get. Using square or rectangular packaged LEDs would eliminate those gaps. But those people don\'t listen to me, either...


Organic LED\'s have, at least up until now, had a very short working life typically a few thousand hours at best, and their performance begins (began?) to deteriorate from day one. Inorganic LED\'s typically 100,000 hours if not overdriven, with very little visible change in the first 50,000 hours or so :o)

So, an inorganic LED display is a significant advance :o)


OLED uses plastic light emitting diode technology. They should be called PLED. The \"organic\" term is used because of what\'s called \"organic chemistry\", basically anything carbon based / petroleum derived.

\'Course now many plastics and chemicals traditionally made from petroleum can be made from various plant oils, though the durability of the plant based stuff often is not as good.

From the first LED until the invention of plastic LEDs, they were made using a specially treated chunk of silicon which dissipated some fraction of waste energy as visible light instead of heat. The first ones were really small and so dim they could hardly be seen in a completely dark room. For years an LED was \"Any color you want as long as it\'s red.\".

Yellow and amber/orange came next, followed by green. The RGB LED display was a long time coming because it took decades to figure out how to make a blue LED that was bright and reliable and actually blue instead of a bluish-green. One of the problems was the compounds required for blue tended to crack.

One day a researcher in Japan noticed that the light from the cracks in the die was brighter than from the rest of it. An inspiration came to him, \"What if we deliberately make it crack all over?\". That did the trick and the blue LED industry took off.

The next \"holy grail\" of the LED was white. Once the blue LED barrier was cracked ;) some \"white\" LED modules were made by putting red, green and blue dies into the same housing. (Such are still made for variable color LEDs.) The big white breakthrough was putting a yellow phosphor over a blue LED die that also emitted ultraviolet. The UV excites the phosphor, which emits yellow light which mixes with the visible blue and appears white.

Gregg Eshelman

i think crystal / glass ......much better display than plastic ....in term of maintenance ....wiping the screen is much easier


137cm LCD devided by 6000 = LED size of 0.22mm each!

Antony Stewart
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