Samsung takes contrast ratio of LCD TVs to 500,000:1

San Jose (CA) – Samsung released new LED-backlit LCD displays, which are expected to increase the contrast ratio of LCD TVs by a factor of 20.

According to the manufacturer, the new panels enable a jump in the dynamic contrast ratio from a typical 5000:1 and 25,000:1 in today’s LCD TV panels into a range between 100,000:1 and 500,000:1. The displays are available 40”, 46”, 52” and 57” diagonal screen sizes and promise the “clearest images on the market today” in what Samsung calls “premium LCD TVs”.

The panels are using a new LED technology described as local dimming : “Hundreds of wafer-thin diodes about the width of the eye’s pupil are electronically turned off and on in exacting sequences that respond to movement on the screen, areas only a fraction of what was previously possible with the most prevalent form of TV backlighting - long, thin fluorescent lamps. In black areas of the picture, the diodes can be completely shut off in order to generate total blackness,” Samsung explained.

Depending upon the number of LEDs used in a screen panel design, the dynamic contrast ratio can improve the contrast in colors by as much as 1000% over the CCFL (cold cathode fluorescent lamp) LCD TVs typically used today, according to the manufacturer.

Samsung said that its “extreme-contrast LCD panels” are now available in Samsung TVs in the U.S. The company expects other manufacturers to adopt the technology for their HDTVs in the future.