LEDs are an invention that we can thank for a lot of the progression we’ve Made in the field of technology. We wouldn’t have the quality of computer screens that we have today without LED lights. Even our LCD screens use LEDs to backlight them. This is because LCD screens can’t produce their own light, so they need a backlight to illuminate them, positioned either directly behind the glass or around the edges. Without these lights our computers would look a bit more like giant calculators, with dim screens that we’d have to squint to read. But, why LEDs?
One big reason why computers use LEDs is because they use less energy than other light sources. LEDs have always been an energy saving source of light – it was a key contribution to our economic recovery after the energy crisis of the 1970s – and most people already making the switch to light their homes with LEDS. Shops like Light Rabbit are helping us realise the incredible benefits of switching to LED lights, but the energy saving benefits aren’t the only reason LEDs are used. RGB-LEDs used in computer and televisions can produce a broader range of colours than other types of screens and can also improve the contrast. LED lights are also one of the main reasons why our screens have managed to get as thin and light as they are today. Old CCFL screens required two parallel lamps and an inverter, which required a lot of space to fit inside a screen, while LEDs need barely any space at all.
One great development over the years is the introduction of an OLED screen (Organic Light Emitting Diodes). In these types of screens pixels are comprised of individual lights and don’t require a backlight at all. This comes with a lot of benefits and can greatly improve the picture quality of our screens. Because it pixel is separate an OLED allows the user to have more control over the screen display. You can adjust the brightness in different sections of the screen separately as well as the colours to personalise your display to suit you. OLEDs are also able to provide a more detailed, accurate image than a backlit LCD. On LCD screens ‘light leakage’ often occurs where the backlight that illuminates certain sections leaks over into the darker sections. Images of white objects on black backgrounds might look like they’re glowing and black will never look truly black on an LCD screen. However, on an OLED, that level of contrast is achievable because each light is separate. A black display will be absolutely black because there would be no light shining behind it. Images on an OLED will be crisper with better contrast and detail.
Are OLEDs the screens of the future? Are LCDs soon to be a thing of the past? Only time will tell. But, what we do know is that computers wouldn’t be what they are today without LEDs and it doesn’t look like we’re going to stop using them any time soon.