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In recent years I have watched with considerable interest as digital cameras have overtaken and then overwhelmed film cameras. At places like theme parks—which apparently were constructed as photo backdrops rather than as places that people actually experience--everyone now seems to be using digital cameras. I see the little signs about ”Kodak Moments” and I feel nostalgic for the old days of film. But chemicals are out, and bits are in.

Today we’re all filling up our hard drives with thousands upon thousands of digital pictures of ever-­increasing size. The pictures are almost free, but you have to buy a new camera every two years or so because the old one has become obsolete. It almost makes me yearn for the old days, when a good camera was an investment that was supposed to last a lifetime. Nevertheless, I wouldn’t want to go back—digital cameras are such great gadgets, and I couldn’t do without the instant gratification.

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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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