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200 nits, OLED vs LCD

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
Hi, I recently saw this in a Galaxy Note 2 review, in which the poster speculated why Note 2 performed much worse in the battery test than what other reviews shown:


Quote:
They said the brightness was at 200 nits. In my opinion that is somehow misleading, because this is almost max for Note 2 or other OLED screens and 1/3 for LCD ones like iPhone 5. Why not doing a test on max brightness?(for battery life)


Could someone explain to me why 200nits is almost max brightness on a OLED phone while only 1/3 on a LCD? Does this mean LCD screens are much brighter than OLED screens? Please help me as I know very little about these display technologies.
Edited by sherlock - 4/6/13 at 1:41pm
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post #2 of 12
OLED technology is still pretty young. The brightness issue is something that is being worked on, we just haven't got there yet.
This article gives a very in depth description:
http://arstechnica.com/science/2012/07/researchers-pave-way-for-much-brighter-oleds/
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post #3 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by AndyM95 View Post

OLED technology is still pretty young. The brightness issue is something that is being worked on, we just haven't got there yet.
This article gives a very in depth description:
http://arstechnica.com/science/2012/07/researchers-pave-way-for-much-brighter-oleds/

So if a LCD phone and OLED phone are both set to 50% brightness, the LCD phone would look much brighter?
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post #4 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by sherlock View Post

So if a LCD phone and OLED phone are both set to 50% brightness, the LCD phone would look much brighter?
Generally, yes. Give it a year or so and every new smartphone will be using OLED screens though, companies are investing a ton of money into it, especially Samsung and Apple.
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post #5 of 12
Here's a good article that explains the difference between the two technologies, specifically applied to the iPhone 5 and Samsung Galaxy S3, which are probably the best example of each type of display. The Retina display in the iPhone 5 is LED backlit LCD, and the Samsung use an AMOLED display.

http://www.cnet.com/8301-17918_1-57531239-85/screens-test-apple-iphone-5-vs-samsung-galaxy-s3/

Just to give you some idea of what you'll see, the iPhone 5 has a maximum brightness of 539 nits for full-white, and the Samsung has a full brightness of 140 nits for full-white. That's a little more than triple the maximum brightness.

There's a lot more than brightness to consider when evaluating phone displays.

For example, while the brightness of an AMOLED display is no where near as high as the LCD, it has a much higher contrast ratio -- 10x as much. That's because there is NO backlight on the AMOLED, so the pixels that are "black" are about as black as you can get. The LCD display still has a backlight to mask. The Apple display has a contrast ratio is 1134:1 and the Samsung is 11,253:1.

There are significant differences in color rendition and gamut between the displays, but since neither of these phone types are going to be used for critical color measurement and analysis, I doubt it matters that much.

I think the biggest difference in practical daily use is the impact of brightness on battery life. If you like a "bright" phone display, cranking up the brightness on an AMOLED will completely devastate your battery life. The iPhone 5 seems much more tolerant of display brightness adjustments. The difference on my Galaxy S3 between 25% brightness (where I usually keep it) and 80-100% brightness (where I set it to when going outside in bright daylight) is probably 225% increase battery consumption. I can't get a 12 hour day out of my S3 with the brightness cranked up, but it can two days at 25%.

Greg
Edited by hammong - 4/6/13 at 1:55pm
post #6 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by hammong View Post

Here's a good article that explains the difference between the two technologies, specifically applied to the iPhone 5 and Samsung Galaxy S3, which are probably the best example of each type of display. The Retina display in the iPhone 5 is LED backlit LCD, and the Samsung use an AMOLED display.

http://www.cnet.com/8301-17918_1-57531239-85/screens-test-apple-iphone-5-vs-samsung-galaxy-s3/

Just to give you some idea of what you'll see, the iPhone 5 has a maximum brightness of 539 nits for full-white, and the Samsung has a full brightness of 140 nits for full-white. That's a little more than triple the maximum brightness.

There's a lot more than brightness to consider when evaluating phone displays.

For example, while the brightness of an AMOLED display is no where near as high as the LCD, it has a much higher contrast ratio -- 10x as much. That's because there is NO backlight on the AMOLED, so the pixels that are "black" are about as black as you can get. The LCD display still has a backlight to mask. The Apple display has a contrast ratio is 1134:1 and the Samsung is 11,253:1.

There are significant differences in color rendition and gamut between the displays, but since neither of these phone types are going to be used for critical color measurement and analysis, I doubt it matters that much.

Greg

Thanks, those are very informative articles I can't wait to dig into.

What do you think should be the best way to calibrate brightness for a battery life test between AMOLED phones & LCD phones? a Fixed nits number(like 200)? device's default brightness or just max brightness?
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post #7 of 12
I run an app on my Galaxy S3 called Battery Monitor Pro, and I find it very useful for keeping track of discharge rates, estimated life, battery health, charge performance, etc.

I use the brightness I need for the situation at hand, it's not unusual for me to adjust my phone's brightness 3-5 times a day based on room lighting or location. Since the brightness slider is on the pull-down notification bar, it's quick and easy to change it as needed. Even 50% bright is too bright for most situations in my particular work space, so no need to calibrate for max brightness levels on this end.

Greg
post #8 of 12
Because LCD has LED or CCFL backlighting and OLED does not.
post #9 of 12
Not all OLED screens are as dim as the Note 2. The Galaxy S4 was tested and got 400 nits. Edit: Actually, I'm looking around and seeing a lot of variance in brightness tests. Are the tools and test that different? Anandtech has the Note 2 as being less bright than the S3, but GSMarena has it the other way around

There also seems to be variance due to different displays used in the same phone. The HTC One for example:
http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=2202869

What a mess.
Edited by GTRagnarok - 4/8/13 at 2:05am
post #10 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by GTRagnarok View Post

Not all OLED screens are as dim as the Note 2. The Galaxy S4 was tested and got 400 nits. Edit: Actually, I'm looking around and seeing a lot of variance in brightness tests. Are the tools and test that different? Anandtech has the Note 2 as being less bright than the S3, but GSMarena has it the other way around

There also seems to be variance due to different displays used in the same phone. The HTC One for example:
http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=2202869

What a mess.

That's certainly good news that S4 have such a high brightness for OLED, certainly showing Samsung is improving that technology every year.
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