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Old 01-16-2007, 06:55 AM   #1
Alexander Turcic
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Toshiba Matsushita Display readies E Ink competing LCD panel

Toshiba Matsushita Display Technology (a joint venture formed between Toshiba and Matsushita) announced today that the company has developed and started mass production of a new monochrome LCD panel for use in electronic dictionaries and e-book readers. Specs:
  • Display size: 5.01-inch
  • Resolution: 640 x 480
  • Display mode: Monochrome reflective display / Internal reflective display (someone care to explain?)
  • Contrast ratio: 12:1 (no backlight)
  • Response time: 20 ms
  • Levels of gray: 16
  • Power consumption: 4mW (2-level grayscale), 20 mW (16-level grayscale)

Compared to the usual E Ink display, the new panel has a higher contrast ratio (12:1 vs. 8:1) and also relatively low power consumption (20 mW vs. 1mW (E Ink standby) and 750 mW (E Ink active update)). Screen refresh is a lot faster (20 ms vs. 0.5-1s).

Before you get too excited keep in mind this is only a 640x480 screen, so hardly as high-resolution as TMD likes us to believe. [Edit: Thanks to RWood for clarifying that 640x480 on 5" is indeed high-resolution]
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Old 01-16-2007, 07:27 AM   #2
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nice, the fast response time makes animations possible.
Any links to a video known?
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Old 01-16-2007, 08:55 AM   #3
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High contrast, fast refresh rate... Now we're making some progress.
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Old 01-16-2007, 09:11 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tribble
nice, the fast response time makes animations possible.
Any links to a video known?
No video, and no other information on their website really. Found this product leaflet, but no information regarding the new panel
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Old 01-16-2007, 11:25 AM   #5
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What's the advantage? Just seems like a really low end LCD with no backlight?
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Old 01-16-2007, 11:32 AM   #6
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Higher contrast ratio = improved legibility
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Old 01-16-2007, 11:46 AM   #7
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low power consumption and great readability is the major advantage of this technology. I want a bigger one in color
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Old 01-16-2007, 11:52 AM   #8
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It's a lot faster than E Ink.
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Old 01-16-2007, 01:26 PM   #9
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Oh. It's not e-ink. Dang
Still, would be interested to see how comfortable it is to read. The OLPC screen technology should be worth looking at too.
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Old 01-16-2007, 09:20 PM   #10
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Animation?

If you're after animation then you typically are going also for a more powerful (and power-hungry CPU) aren't you?

Maybe I'm a semi-Luddite but seems to me that the key ingredients for mobile reading are three things: clarity, clarity, and clarity. After that long battery life and light weight. If you don't do a clear, readable display then the advantages over paper books are lost. Consider in my (older guy) definition of clarity that screen size matters, too: I can focus on my Clie to read something, but it's a pain with progressive lenses - thankfully I didn't get into the PDA habit too badly. Book-sized readers have book-sized display areas, couple that with high-resolution display and you've got me.
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Old 01-16-2007, 10:13 PM   #11
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Now maybe I'm missing something (it would not be the first time); but, I consider my desktop monitor to be rather good for what I do (a lot of word processing, spreadsheets, and surfing MobileRead) and the 1280 x 1024 resolution on a 17" screen is not half bad. Now that works out to an average of 9,337 per sq inch. The Toshiba with its 5.1" screen has 24,606 per sq inch. In my view that makes it high resolution.
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Old 01-17-2007, 12:49 AM   #12
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I think this should be the panel used in the Chinese ebook company jcnip's M218A.
http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...ighlight=M218A

The spec., i.e. resolution etc.. is so similar. Right?
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Old 01-17-2007, 04:38 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RWood
Now maybe I'm missing something (it would not be the first time); but, I consider my desktop monitor to be rather good for what I do (a lot of word processing, spreadsheets, and surfing MobileRead) and the 1280 x 1024 resolution on a 17" screen is not half bad. Now that works out to an average of 9,337 per sq inch. The Toshiba with its 5.1" screen has 24,606 per sq inch. In my view that makes it high resolution.
Points taken and lesson learned. I updated the first post accordingly.
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Old 01-17-2007, 09:50 AM   #14
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The faster response time, while not doing a whole lot to make an e-book a better device, does allow for embedded video and animation within text. An object or scene being described in text could be supported by an embedded visual application. Another technology the fast response time enables is digitizer input so the user can make annotations to the text.

One last benefit of the fast response time should be eradication of image persistance. I'd like to see more optical measurements, though, before rendering any comparison to an electrophoretic display.
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Old 01-17-2007, 11:21 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by segatang
I think this should be the panel used in the Chinese ebook company jcnip's M218A.
http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...ighlight=M218A

The spec., i.e. resolution etc.. is so similar. Right?
Possibly, but then again, how would they have gotten their hands on the panel since it was definitely not for mass production at that time yet.
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