Sep 01.2021

Full Color LED Display - The Technology Behind

What is full color LED display? The technology behind

Different color types of LED display

What colors of LEDs are available?

Usages of different color LED displays

Bottom Line

With technology at the forefront, Full Color LED Display has gained considerable popularity, thanks to its ease of use and convenience. This is certainly an excellent way to display messages, brand missions, and advertise products and services leveraging the usual medium of display. Public and private entities across the globe use full color LED displays for advertising, public awareness, and a range of other purposes. What's more, you will also find them in events, ceremonies, and functions involving a large audience.


But what is full color LED signs and what is the technology behind them? What are its modern-day applications? What common color types are available when you are looking for full color LED displays? We will find answers to these questions and more in the following few sections.


What is full color LED display? The technology behind


Even before we dig into full color LED displays, it is crucial to first understand what an LED display is in the first place. LED as you know is an abbreviation for Light Emitting Diodes. Alternatively called the 'cold light', the light in these displays isn't produced conventionally. No metal filaments need to be heated to create light for these displays. Instead, the diode starts emitting some form of light, when the light actually passes through specially designed semiconductors. LED bulbs are pretty much in vogue due to their energy efficiency and full color LED displays are no exceptions.


Typically, these displays comprise several solid elements that do not have any mobile parts. These elements are then consolidated in the form of plastic. This adds to the durability of the product and further ensures that the bulbs do not exude any heat when lit up for long hours.


The history of the LED technology dates back to the early nineties when it was first created by inventor Oleg Losev. Over the next few decades, developments were performed, and finally, in 1994 Shuji Nakamura, a Japanese Scientist came up with the concept of colored LED displays. The very first of these displays could efficiently exude blue lights. This was almost immediately succeeded by green and white hues of LED displays which further skyrocketed the LED technology revolution.


Your usual LED display will comprise several LEDs that are spaced in proximity. The diodes alter the brightness level of every LED, thereby collectively establishing an image on the display we usually come across.


In an attempt to add brightness and the right type of colors, the makers follow and advocate the principles of additive mixing. The process is simple where new colors are established by adding light to a range of already available colors. The typical LED display will contain common colors like Red, Green, Blue. The defining aspect here, however, will be the fact that they are fully mounted in a structured and stable way. The mentioned colors are also known as the primary colors and they thus amalgamate to create pixels.


Interestingly, the intensity of every diode can be adjusted and while doing so, you can create numerous colors. Every time you view an LED screen from a specific distance, you can also see the many pixels of the colors as available in the said image.


An outdoor full color LED display typically leverages two concepts and technologies, as listed below:


RGB: This is an abbreviation of Red, Green, and Blue. The unique aspect of this color combination is perhaps the fact that you can recreate any random color from these existing colors. Thus, this is one of those primary color schemes that is used in the full color LED display technology.


SMD: The full color LED technology also leverages the Surface Mount Device tool, which again are grouped electronic components. Instead of using metal pins for soldering, these devices are directly mounted right on the surface of your printed CB (circuit board). It does not involve any soldering of the metal pin that is located outside the main circuit board.


In colored LED displays, the concept of SMD is leveraged uniquely and unconventionally. These displays involve small diodes of the RGB color scheme. These diodes are then placed in small plastic capsules and then mounted on the display of the specific circuit board. Every time, the diodes are arranged in this fashion, they save space allowing manufacturers to create displays with lesser spacing and exceptional resolution.


Different color types of LED display


You will find several LEDs in the current market available in every type of structure, orientation, and shape. The main takeaway? You will also find them in almost all kinds of colors. Despite many available forms of colored LED displays, perhaps the most common one would be the Gallium red LED which comes with a 5 mm diameter. This is also one of the cheapest colored LED variants.


You will find RGB LED displays as well as other color combinations in every type of package. Typically, multiple LEDs are part of a single package.


What colors of LEDs are available?


LEDs are typically available in all sorts of colors. However, the defining point will be the bi or tri-colored diodes present in the LED.


In the case of bi-colored diodes, you will find LEDs in lighter or darker shades that are almost similar to the single-colored variants. The only major difference would be the extra LED chip that would come attached to your existing LED system.


These LEDs also come with two/three leads for connections, as per the method leveraged. Typically, you would want to connect two specific LED leads parallel and completely inverse to each other. Your first LED's anode will then be connected to the second LED's cathode. The reverse is also possible. Every time, the anode receives ample light supply, your LED will start glowing. Both diodes can simultaneously glow when dynamic switching is employed at a super quick rate.


Conversely, for tri-colored diodes, three different LEDs will be taken in the primary RGB scheme and they will share the same cathode lead. It is worth noting that this cathode LED will also internally have two additional chips of LED connected. You either need to turn one of the LEDs, or both. Regardless. It is crucial to connect the shared cathode at the surface level.


Usages of different color LED displays


Full color LED displays come with multi-faceted applications and are primarily used to display marketing or public awareness messages. Additionally, they may also be used in motor vehicles or the lights of your regular and off-road bikes.


Another common but often overlooked application would be in the indicators of traffic lights. You will find these lights in almost all traffic signs and points. They are an excellent way to grab public attention and are equally easy to install and operate.


Colored LED lights may also be used to display data on boards. This can be any form of data (either public awareness or marketing or anything in between). Nowadays, these displays are also used by medical professionals in a range of medical applications. Interestingly and conversely enough, they may also be used while designing toys.


Other applications would be purely non-visual, and you can also get these displays in your light bulbs, remote controls, or practically anything else you can think of. These displays are popular and they will continue to be popular thanks to their efficiency, ease of use, and high affordability.


Bottom Line


Because you now have a clear idea about the different types of LED displays, you will have an easier time choosing the right colored LED display for your specific needs. While choosing your display, also consider the resolution of your selected device. Typically, the resolution here will entirely depend on the total viewing display. First, try to understand what specific distance your audience will stand while assessing the display. In case you are in proximity to low-resolution displays, it will be extremely inconvenient to locate what exactly you want to be displayed on the sign.


Usually, colored LED displays with exceptionally high resolution come at a high price point. In case you are planning to get the outdoor full color LED display on a commercial/public building façade or right in the middle of some iconic traffic point as a digital sign, you need to consider the distance from which it will be viewed. In these cases, it is not worth investing in high-resolution displays as people can already view them with ease and convenience.


If, however, you are planning to install the display at a department store or the floor level, or some other location, there's a high possibility that your potential audience would want to view it better. That is why it is important to invest in a quality banner in this case.


Either way, your goal here would be to first assess your requirements and then explore colored LED displays accordingly. Once you have your needs pinpointed, it will be easier and even quicker to select a color LED display that is aligned with all of your specificities.