The three-day InfoComm China 2019 conference was held in Beijing last week, with a focus on professional audio/visual (pro-AV) and integrated experience technologies, including LCD, OLED and direct-view LED video.
The most eye-catching demonstration among exhibited products and breakthrough innovations was Leyard’s 54” 1920 x 1080 Micro LED display. Until now, I thought smaller sized Micro LED displays were the domain of future technology development for leading TV brands such as Samsung, Sony and LGE, who have each showcased their first Micro LED display demonstration at CES or ISE tradeshows.
- The 54” LED video screen size, Leyard’s first, is 20” smaller than the 75” that Samsung showcased at CES 2019, which was itself notable as a smaller size of previous generations of Samsung’s “The Wall”. Leyard’s 54” resolution is simple full HD at 1920 x 1080, which is not a mainstream resolution anymore for TVs of this size, while Samsung’s 75” at CES was 3840 x 2160 with a 0.4 mm pixel pitch. Back in 2012, Sony demonstrated its first 55” full HD Crystal LED TV at CES.
- In general, the LED video industry believes it is not possible to implement a Micro LED display of less than 0.6 mm pixel pitch using PCB as the backplane. Leyard is simply pushing typical LED technology as a traditional leading LED video manufacturer. FPD makers are more knowledgeable in utilizing glass backplanes since LCD panels is use either a-Si, LTPS or Oxide.
- For non-TV applications, 54” is not a very attractive size. LED video displays have the biggest benefit at more than 100” size by avoiding price competitions with LCD or OLED sizes. Even if Leyard developed it for a TV product, full HD is not a competitive resolution anymore.
- So why is Leyard showcasing this 54” 1920 x 1080 panel if it is not targeting the TV market? Sony displayed a 220” 4K resolution Micro LED at CES 2019, while LGE demonstrated a 142” Micro LED technology at ISE 2019. Strategically, I’m sure that smaller size Micro LED displays would attract more industry attention than huge sizes shown by many competitors.
- The primary LCD videowall panel size is 55” 1920 x 1080, which is a 0.6mm pixel pitch. However, the bezel to bezel (active to active) width of two LCD panels, when making a videowall, depends on LCD panel technology type: 3.5mm, below 2mm and below 1mm. The latest thinnest gap is still 0.88mm for LCD videowall. In this case, the 0.6mm pixel pitch of a 54” Micro LED display can achieve the same videowall effect and usage as 55” LCD videowall installations, with perfect immersive viewing experience without any distracting bezel found in LCD.
Micro LED displays are still a premature technology in terms of mass production. LED chip transfer processes and cost innovation still have a long way to go, but TV and non-TV applications are potential markets for future Micro LED roadmaps. The positive thing is that not only are FPD set makers, but also traditional LED video manufacturers, all starting to develop Micro LED displays and expected to drive each other forward through innovation and competition.