CES 2011: An IQ Boost For Dumb TVs

Could the hit product of the 2011 CES be a small, cheap, and not particularly attractive black box?

1 min read
CES 2011: An IQ Boost For Dumb TVs

3D TVs, giant TVs, Internet TVs—if you want to replace that high definition flat panel television you bought a year or two ago, the options are endless. But what if you don’t?

That’s a question most TV manufacturers don’t like to even think about. So it was refreshing at the 2011 CES when LG announced its $150 SmartTVUpgrader. It makes dumb TVs smart, giving them access to Netflix and other video services, the web, and an app store. And, if the crowds surrounding the SmartTVUpgrader display in LG’s booth are any indication, it could be the hit of the show.

For more gadget news, check out our complete coverage of the 2011 Consumer Electronics Show.

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Digging Into the New QD-OLED TVs

Formerly rival technologies have come together in Samsung displays

5 min read
Television screen displaying closeup of crystals

Sony's A95K televisions incorporate Samsung's new QD-OLED display technology.

Televisions and computer monitors with QD-OLED displays are now on store shelves. The image quality is—as expected—impressive, with amazing black levels, wide viewing angles, a broad color gamut, and high brightness. The products include:

All these products use display panels manufactured by Samsung but have their own unique display assembly, operating system, and electronics.

I took apart a 55-inch Samsung S95B to learn just how these new displays are put together (destroying it in the process). I found an extremely thin OLED backplane that generates blue light with an equally thin QD color-converting structure that completes the optical stack. I used a UV light source, a microscope, and a spectrometer to learn a lot about how these displays work.

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