OLED, SED and FLCD General Discussion Thread


Active Member
Thanks Stuart

Can we have a view on the downsides ie why cant I go and buy each of them now? This can be kept up to date and become a really useful 'technology' reference.



Well-known Member
Ive also heard that theres another type of display/technology similar to "OLED", but its called "PLED".
The "P" being for Polimer.

Dont know much about these screens bit im sure they will eventually be announced.


Standard Member
HighDeff said:
And breakthrough news from Cambridge Display Technology here.:http://www.cdtltd.co.uk/news/426.asp
ah me old mucker at Cambridge who tipped the wink to me about CDT and this stuff and swore us to secrecy was in fact right....
We used to make research grade stuff that gave blue LEDs vastly improved emissivity - pity our oriental friends had patented all of the applications after my boss patented the synthesis....stalemate :nono:
Oh for polymer read "organic" - they happen to be polymers which are themselves a type of "organic chemical" .... hence polymer/organic vs. solid state (or inorganic).


Distinguished Member
jedi-jae said:
But aren't all of these screen types years away?
Toshiba plan to release SED later this year in Japan, so not light years.

Nice to have a new forum for this very exciting new technology. :thumbsup:


Novice Member
Thanks for that Stuart. These technologies have really caught my interest, I have to admit I had not heard of FLCD until now.

Plasma and LCD have been slightly disappointing, not too many I have seen have impressed more than good CRT.

So I'll be reading this thread regularly



Standard Member
The Gadget show was looking at technology in south korea etc a few weeks before xmas .

they are years ahead of us in tech terms, they have home broadband speeds of 100mbit. I thought my 10 mbit was fast :rotfl:

They also touched on the subject of Oled displays . They said it would be a great new type of screen but at the moment they could only make them a few inches big .

I reckon it could be quite a while before they can make them big enough and cheep enough for the average Joe to buy

Max Payne

Novice Member
oxy said:
the are years ahead of us in tech terms, they have home broadband speeds of 100mbit. I thought my 10 mbit was fast :rotfl:
Have some sympathy for people like me who are still stuck on dial up due to the Irish Government and the main broadband supplier NOT providing the service in rural areas

Jesus! 100MB? Im in work and Im only on a 1mb lan connection!!!!:eek:


Does FLCD suffer from flicker, or are the pixels toggled on and off at such a high refresh rate that there is no visible flicker?


Did a bit of reading about OLED recently and just thought I'd put up a few things (mostly from memory, so the following may or may not be true)

Also long and boring for those who already know anything about it.:boring:

OLED, organic light emitting diodes, has two main branches; PLED, Polymer-LED (also known as LEP, light-emitting polymer), and SMOLED, Small Molecule-LED. Within both of these there is another distinction between fluorescent and phosphorescent, but I'm not sure what it is. Both use organic materials (specifically plastics which have been modified to give them a conductivity which is a billion times that of normal plastic!) which are luminescent when a current is passed through them. The major differences are that small-molecule uses, well, material made of small molecules, and polymer, uses... polymers, or long, chained molecules. In terms of fabrication, the smoled material is deposited under vacuum with some kind of evaporation technique (bit more expensive), whereas polymer can processed in a solution, and as a liquid can be printed on using pretty much standard ink jet printer technology. This is one of the main resons it has the potential to be so cheap, ink jet tech is very good and fairly easy to apply to PLED. Another difference is that SMOLED has a coupla year development time advantage over PLED, and is supported by Kodak, whereas PLED i think was developed by the much smaller CDT and has only recently got support from bigger firms. ( <- not sure if that is true)
The one advantage both of these have over say LCD, is that LCD requires both a liquid crystal layer, but also a seperate light source for each pixel (the LCD itself just blocks the light from the light source behind) Both types of OLED have only the light emitting material (a red, blue and green blob of material for each pixel) and no seperate light source.
LCDs have a limited viewing angle, whereas OLEDs have a much wider viewing angle (similar to what you might expect from a flat screen CRT tv)
LCDs have a latency time (which gets worse at lower temperatures), when the LCD layer rearranges. OLEDs don't really have that delay.
As mentioned above, OLEDS can also be put onto a flexible surface, and are much thinner than LCD displays.
There are already products which use OLED tech, but I think are entirely small screens; digital camera, mobile and shaver screens. Difficult to say whether they will make it to the big screen.
I think the problem with PLEDs is that although the polymer used for red and green works very well, and has a lifetime of ~100,000 hours, they are having problems with the blue, which has significantly shorter lifetime. I am pretty sure there are working large screen prototypes tho.


Standard Member
I first read about Organic LED's about 6 years ago when I used to subscribe to Computer Shopper. They were still in research mode back then. But they were talking about having roll up screens for laptops that fitted in your pocket.

Only difference I can see now, is that some car stereos use the OLED for their small screens.

The only other news i've seen on this is a prototype low res black and white roll up screen shown at this years CES to selected people. About the size of a PDA. So still no good for watching the latest block buster.

The big problem when looking at these future things is when?

The new Canon / Toshiba SED's seem most promising - but will probably due next year for most of us. They look as if they will only be releasing LARGE screens to start with - faster return on investment in high value market.

I'm a big Canon fan as everything I bought has been a quality product with the "Ronseal feel". They seem to be commited to world domination through commercialisation of their R&D efforts. Get to market first, even if the price is high, then the competitors will suffer lower returns by the time you've swalled your R&D costs and lower your prices. Toshiba give them the market credibility that they don't yet have in TV land.

Like many others, I'm not rushing to spend £1,500 on this years slow LCD crop, with artefacting and blue tinted black levels, when in I expect to be stuck with it for 10 years. How gutted will people be when they see the quality of SED!? Although to be fair, where can I go and buy one now, and for what price? It may be 2-3 years.


Well-known Member
heath1s said:
Only difference I can see now, is that some car stereos use the OLED for their small screens.
Yep i have one its OK but not great copes better than older LCD with direct sunlight tho and is very bright i have it on the lowest setting and have to use a black background with dark text otherwise it blinds me while driving at night,

Great idea that one Kenwood! :lesson:


Standard Member
Distinguished Member

hornydragon's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: The dark underbelly of humanity
Posts: 16,287

16287 posts :rolleyes:

Get some sleep man ;)


Wish I'd known of this proir to shelling out 2,700quid on a pioneer 436XDE in Nov05.:(


Novice Member
Jeffers01 said:
Thanks Stuart

Can we have a view on the downsides ie why cant I go and buy each of them now? This can be kept up to date and become a really useful 'technology' reference.

I'd like to see that as well. From what I've remembered:

Downsides of OLED/PLED:
- Color control (difficult to get uniform and accurate colors)
- Lifespan
- Brightness?

Don't know about specific downsides, but I remember reading about this technology many years ago and still it is not available.


Novice Member
Will SED have perfect geometry like LCDs and Plasmas?


Standard Member
I really hope this technology does not suffer from dead/stuck pixels. If it doesn't then i am sold already :thumbsup:

Tyler Durden

Well-known Member
Just found this, thought I'd copy and paste it here:

Looks like some of the dates they talk about have already slipped a lot!

SED The New Screen on the Block

Looking for a lofty vision? A new display technology called SED promises to not only be the next big thing in flat panel hang-on-the-wall TV, but to replace and all-but-eliminate everything that has come before, by offering better picture quality at a lower price.

Despite the seemingly ever-expanding array of new thin screen and projection display technologies&#247;plasma, LCD, DLP, LCoS, OLED, etc.&#247;good old-fashioned 50-year old color CRT technology remains the gold standard of picture quality. So what if you could take the front surface of a CRT-type display, using the exact same phosphors as conventional TV sets, and eliminate the depth by using a new thin-screen technology to replace the "electron gun" that makes picture tubes so deep? You&#226;d have the best of both worlds &#8212; a truly CRT-like picture you could hang on a wall. That's SED.


If you've never heard of SED until now, the acronym stands for Surface-conduction Electron-emitter Display &#8212; that may be because Toshiba and Canon, the two companies betting on this promising new display technology, have done very little to promote it,. That will change, because they're gearing up to make a big splash in 2007, with the first SED factory beginning production this August, in Japan. Both companies have been so hush-hush that at January's Consumer Electronics Show, journalists and editors were actually turned away from the invite-only SED demo, and not always nicely.

Custom Retailer Senior Editor Joe Paone was one of the lucky ones who got a sneak preview. "It was really paranoid, cloak-and-dagger stuff with the demo, I felt like Deep Throat was going to give the pitch," he says. "They showed a 36-inch, 720p model against unidentified (likely uncalibrated), similarly-sized LCD and plasma panels. I was impressed. They scrolled the alphabet along the bottom of the screen and there were no trails or artifacts whatsoever. The whole demo lasted about 15 minutes and they hustled us out of there quickly."

Other published reports by those who have seen the SED demo (it was also shown in Japan at CEATEC last year) speak in glowing terms of SED's terrific black levels and ability to show dark picture material. (Contrast ratio is claimed to be 8600:1.)

"Yes, I saw the CES demo," said Mike Mike Tsinberg, president of Key Digital Systems, a manufacturer of video switchers and processors. "I think SED is the ultimate TV display because it is the best in four categories: First, pixels are addressable, like other digital image devices such as LCD, Plasma, DLP, and DILA. Second, it uses phosphors for color. Phosphors make the best color. Third, the time decay of pixels are phenomenal. That makes SED temporal (motion) resolution the best among any display today &#8212; none are as fast as SED. Fourth, it uses 'tunneling' electrons for phosphor excitement - this takes much less power than plasma, and I believe is far more reliable."

Hype for SED may not have rolled into high gear yet, but behind the scenes, the machinery is coming into place for a big time rollout. Canon and Toshiba have pledged $1.8 billion to the SED joint venture, called SED Inc.. For Canon, known for cameras, camcorders and copiers but not for displays, SED offers a chance to instantly become a substantial player in a new market. Toshiba, of course, is the up-and-coming Japanese R&D star who rocked the world a decade ago with DVD innovations rivaling Sony and Philips.

SED isn't the first attempt to create a thin CRT-like display, but may be the first to succeed. Last year Canon bought up the patents for "ThinCRT" displays from a bankrupt company called Candescent, which was working on a similar FED (field emission display) technology. Candescent had already been working with Sony on FED technology. Published reports from last summer, when Sony introduced their new TV line, indicated that the company is continuing to develop this technology, but doesn't feel it's ready to market yet. The technology that Sony's working on is sometimes referred to as "CNT FED", with CNT standing for carbon nanotube, which is a slightly different electron emitter technology from that used in SED.


The underlying concept behind SED is seemingly obvious. Instead of re-inventing the wheel with a whole new screen technology, start with what everybody knows and loves: The front surface of a traditional cathode ray tube (CRT). By combining this front surface with a new way of shooting electrons at it, and with the electrons at the same voltage as a CRT (about 10,000-volts) the exact same color phosphors can be used on the screen. It looks almost identical to a normal color TV screen, except that even in wide-screen configuration, it is perfectly flat. And it can hang on a wall.

So how does it work? True to its Surface-conduction Electron-emitter Display acronym, there is a separate electron emitter for each pixel of the display. The back of the screen is coated with metal, the positive side of a high voltage (10-kV) is applied here. The negative side of the high voltage is applied to the substrate of the electron emitter panel, which is separated from the back of the screen by a vacuum. The high voltage is not enough to arc across this vacuum. However, when low-voltage electrons from the electron-emitter panel cross an extremely thin slit (just a few nanometers wide), some of them scatter and are accelerated by the 10-kV charge, hitting the back of the screen with this high voltage charge. This triggers the colored phosphor dots on the front side of the screen to illuminate, just as in an ordinary CRT screen.

The electron emitter substrate panel has a layer of ultrafine palladium oxide (PdO). This is where the microscopic slits are located&#247;each representing one color pixel of the image.

The scattering of electrons as they cross a microscopic gap, a byproduct of the "tunneling effect," is part of the realm of nanotechnology&#247;the study of tiny particle science. This is the crucial aspect of SED that could not be developed 50 years ago, when CRT technology was invented.

Nanotechnology has become increasingly important as the electron pathways used in integrated circuits &#8212; such as Pentium processor chips &#8212; become ever narrower (in some cases just a few electrons wide!). In nanotechnology, the wave-like nature of atomic particles' electrons becomes a dominant aspect of their behavior.

The "scattered" electrons have essentially gone astray from the path they were trying to take&#247;to get to the other side of the slit. This straying effect is what makes SED work. It&#226;s a bit like what might happen if you poured a bucket of ping pong balls into another bucket&#247;while most would go into the second bucket, a few of them might bounce out and scatter on the floor.

Besides offering better picture quality, SED is also more energy efficient than plasma and LCD technologies, the developers say, requiring roughly one third to one half the wattage-per-lumen of comparably sized competitors.

The thickness of the entire display has been reported to be less than a few centimeters, and as little as 7mm! No details regarding weight have been announced. Neither has there been any mention of how long the SED display is projected to last, which, of course, has been an issue for other display technologies.

Although last January's CES demo showed a 36-inch 720p unit, the companies say there are no plans to market this pre-production prototype. Instead, their first commercial product will be a 50-inch unit with 1080p (1920 x 1080) resolution. Contrast ratio will be a whopping 8600:1. Response time &#8212; meaning how quickly an image can appear or disappear &#8212; will be just 1-millisecond. (A frame of video lasts for 33-milliseconds.)

When Will SED Be Real?

The first SED panels are scheduled for manufacture in August, 2005, but this will only be small-lot production of about 3,000 SED screens per month. These early units are expected to be available at retail by the beginning of 2006.

Full-scale production (15,000 units per month) is set for 2007, ramping up to shipments of 3-million units by 2010. In addition to the 50-inch screen, a 40-inch unit is also planned. SED Inc.'s projections predict that SED will hold a 20 percent share of the 40-inch and larger TV market by 2010.

Canon began working on the underlying concepts of SED as far back as 1986, and first signed a codevelopment agreement with Toshiba in 1999. Canon's printing and micro-fabrication technology experience will be utilized in manufacturing the large electron-emitter substrate panels, the companies say, complemented by Toshiba's expertise in phosphor-coated screens and semiconductors.

With joint R&D spanning more than half a decade and barely any publicity, the companies wanted to keep the technology under wraps until they had reduced manufacturing costs to the point where it could be competitive. Price projections released by the companies indicate that by 2010, they expect the average retail price per SED screen to be under 70,000-yen (under $700 at current exchange rates).


What's so exciting and unusual about SED is that it is superior on practically every front: picture quality, price, viewing angle, and power consumption. Until now, choosing a display technology for any given home theater installation has involved going through a series of trade-offs regarding price and longevity. Now, one technology may truly blow away the competition by sheer technical superiority.

Price, of course, is the key to all this: If plasma or LCD are still cheaper than SED by 2010, then all bets are off. With ever-dropping prices for these more established flat panel technologies, SED is shooting for a moving price target.

Still, it would seem to have a number of inherent advantages. Articles appearing in manufacturing-oriented publications such as Nikkei Electronics Asia confirm that Toshiba and Canon have indeed developed an inexpensive fabrication process for SED.

But from a pure picture-quality perspective, SED technology leverages some 50+ years of research into making the red, green, and blue color phosphors that coat the inside of the CRT picture tube. Among video aficionados, Toshiba has received praise over the years (from "gurus" such as Joe Kane) for offering outstanding CRT TV sets with excellent, temperature-correct color fidelity.

If SED's lifespan proves to be anywhere near the reliability of CRT technology (which currently beats all competition for longevity), that would be yet another SED advantage, and another nail in the coffins of everything else.


The SED publicity bandwagon may not have started yet, but it will, and your customers will likely start asking about it before it becomes widely available. This is technology focused on the wide-screen high definition digital TV marketplace of 2007 and beyond, not 2005.

Though SED screen sizes may get bigger, for the foreseeable future they will not compete with front projection, or even big rear projection screen sizes.

Initially SED will only be available in two screen sizes &#8212; 40 and 50-inches. At first SED may still not be the most economical choice &#8212; initially, it may cost just as much or even more than comparable-size plasma or LCD models. Following the usual curve, prices will go down only after economies of scale kick in.

But as SED actually becomes available beginning in early 2006, custom retailers should keep a close eye on this late-to-the-party display technology, and its progress. SED may end up stealing the show. -Cliff Roth

The Atheist

Well-known Member
Does anybody know if this technology can be utilised on a smaller scale - say for flat panel PC/Mac monitors - or will it be limited to large format displays??


Novice Member
The Atheist said:
Does anybody know if this technology can be utilised on a smaller scale - say for flat panel PC/Mac monitors - or will it be limited to large format displays??
As far as I am aware, it can be utilised on smaller screens. But as someone stated above, the first screens of this technology (SED) will aim for the larger screen market where they will get a return faster.

The Atheist

Well-known Member
ye i get that, i was just curious about further applications, specifically if there was a size limitation!


Novice Member
Was holding out for SED about a year and a half ago and then thought - it's years away - so dived in and went for Plasma. Really glad I did as I love my screen, despite the artefacts and quirks. However, still hoping for SED one day...

In the mean time, has anyone head about 'Electronic Ink'? This is basically a 'does what it says on the tin' type thing - it really is electronic ink. And so all the nastiness of 'outdoor displays' such being invisibile in sunlight become a thing of the past, as this really is watching moving, 'printed' images (well, sort of!) Anyway, it's reflected light, not projected. Not sure if it'll ever be the thing of AV dreams (probably best suited to digital camera displays / i-pods and the like), but it's pretty damned sexy stuff (saddo that I am).

Take a look here... http://www.eink.com/products/index.html


Distinguished Member
I think they showed some prototypes at this years CES, looks very interesting and oculd be huge in the future - especially for things like newspaper reading and the like. Shame it's only in B&W&#8230; for now!

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