What Does Microdisplay Mean?

A microdisplay is a display that has a very small screen. The screen size of microdisplays is usually less than two inches diagonal. This type of tiny electronic display system was introduced commercially in the late 1990s. The most common applications of microdisplays include rear-projection TVs and head-mounted displays. Microdisplays may be reflective or transmissive depending upon the way light is allowed to pass through the display unit.


Techopedia Explains Microdisplay

Microdisplays are miniaturized display units with screen sizes and resolution in the micro levels. Their small size enables them to be used in a wide variety of applications that require a screen that takes up small space, like head-mounted displays and digital cameras. They are also widely used in rear-projection TVs and data projectors. Sometimes, more than one microdisplay may be used in head-mounted displays to provide better viewing angle and resolution.

The two major types of microdisplays are reflective and transmissive displays.

Reflective microdisplays are used in DLP projectors, in which tiny mirrors bounce light into the lens or projection path. Thus, the image is formed by diverting the light into the desired projection path in reflective microdisplays. Reflective microdisplays may make use of liquid crystal on silicon (LCOS), which allows rapid light modulation to create images.

In the case of transmissive microdisplays, light is allowed to pass through the display and is not reflected. Backlit laptop computer screens and rear-projection TVs use this type of microdisplay.

A microdisplay is defined by its resolution and its power consumption. The higher the resolution and lower the power consumption, the better quality the microdisplay. The power consumed by a microdisplay is usually measured in terms of milliwatts of energy.

New advancements in microdisplay technology have allowed for the development of high-definition and ultra-high-definition microdisplays that provide a better viewing experience.


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Margaret Rouse

Margaret Rouse is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical, business audience. Over the past twenty years her explanations have appeared on TechTarget websites and she's been cited as an authority in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine and Discovery Magazine.Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages. If you have a suggestion for a new definition or how to improve a technical explanation, please email Margaret or contact her…