Samsung to demo next-gen, 240Hz LCD TV tech
Samsung has developed what it claims its the world's first LCD panel with a 240Hz image frame rate - double that offered by top-end LCD tellies today.
The South Korean giant said it will be showing off a 15in prototype next week, but admitted it will be three years before the new technology goes into mass-production.
Samsung calls its new panel design "Blue Phase". Panels will incorporate image processing circuitry that will turn an image moving at, say, 60 frames a second into one that changes 240 times a second. The three extra frames displayed each cycle - instead of one frame there are now four - are generated by interpolating them from the original frame and the one that would otherwise come after it.
The upshot, the company claimed, will be even smoother movement and no motion blur.
Samsung's Blue Phase prototype: no blurring, cheap to make
How come? More frames per cycle means fewer differences between those frames, so there is less opportunity for the viewer to notice when the LCD flips its pixels from one frame to the next. It's that perception of change as the screen flips from one frame to the next, almost instantaneously, that causes the eye to see blurred movement in 50Hz and 60Hz video.
The potential flaw is that some folk already complain that 120Hz TVs produce movement that's too smooth, it seeems unnatural. That's surely only going to get worse when you double the frame rate again.
But Blue Phase isn't only about upping the effective frame rate of the image to 240Hz but also enhancing the structure of the display to yield better viewing angles, black intensity and colour reproduction.
Samsung's current LCD panels use the S-PVA - Super Pattern Vertical Alignment - mode, which is essentially the pattern of the pixels placed on the panel. S-PVA is good for high contrast ratios, in turn yielding good blacks, but the downside is the way colours can appear to change as the angle at which the viewer looks at the panel changes.
S-PVA incorporates alignment layers to ensure the red, green and blue pixels correctely form single-colour vertical bands across the face of the panel, and while Blue Phase also uses this vertical alignment, it's able to generate the pattern automatically, without the need for extra production processes.
That, Samsung claimed, will make Blue Phase panels - when they do arrive - much cheaper to make.
CRT is the answer
What is all this nonsense about reducing motion blurring on LCD displays by playing about with the drive signal? LCD displays are simply incapable of displaying smooth motion video due to their rubbish refresh rates, irrespective of what drive you apply. A standard CRT TV displays sharper fast motion video than any current HD display LCD TV on the market. The answer is, therefore, that if you want to rid yourself of motion blurring, buy a CRT TV (you'll have to hurry though because there aren't many left). OLED displays might be the answer when they can make them last more than a couple of years.
0.017 second delay.
I call shenanigans. If something's running at 60 FPS, and it's doing some fancy transitional effects between frames to increase it to 240 FPS, that means it has to load the next frame before showing it, and then give us three useless frames.
0.017 second delay? Worthless. No thanks.
Is there a type of shutter glass that's not LCD then?
I may be wrong here, but when they are clear you're looking through a piece of polaroid, when black the LCD is polarised against the polaroid layer and so you can't see through it...
Similarly the TV will have a polaroid layer, so the light coming from an LCD TV will be polarised, if that happens to be against the glass then you can't see whether on or off.
Maybe it's not a problem if both lenses are polarised the same way?
I'm happy to be proven wrong, I'd love to be able to use my shutter glasses again...
Waste of power
Has anyone else thought of the extra power this thing is going to pull? If it needs to interpolate and create three new frames for every transmitted frame, then it's interpolating and creating at least 72 frames per second. That's likely going to take a good amount of processing, thus a good amount of power draw. I'm no "greeny", but I certainly don't want to increase my electric bill using a TV that will (in all likelihood) actually look worse than its predecessor.
'Shutter' glassess not polorised they alternate on off (black clear) @ 240Hz means 120 frames viewed per second per eye. Question is will the glassess cope? No tv does polorised images this is special two projector job only. ie theme park only.