Does PenTile Have Fewer Pixels?

Pfff… No.

PenTile has the same number of pixels as a legacy stripe panel. It achieves this with one-third fewer subpixels, using subpixel rendering (SPR) technology, and adaptive filtering algorithms… but these panels still meet and exceed the rigorous requirements of the display industry for the definitions of resolution, measuring modulation contrast ratio of black and white lines through a moving aperture grille.

Take a look at the image below. That’s a comparison of RGB stripe and PenTile RGBW LCD. Hopefully this will help you see how four columns write a black and white line pair as compared to the six columns required for RGB stripe.

We love talking about this, so if you have questions, please feel free to comment.

6 comments on “Does PenTile Have Fewer Pixels?

  1. And because of the fewer subpixels, each pixel is colorized in a certain fashion, and you get overall less color resolution. The result is, it looks like ****. nice diamond-grid of oranges and blues. Vertical lines are disrupted and jagged. Generally just a nasty-looking result. No thanks.

    • We appreciate the passion around your comment. But, I beg to differ on your assessment about resolution. The human vision system does not localize detail and color in the same way. This is why subpixel rendering (SPR) works as well as it does. It is important to create the desired contrast modulation to present all of the detail of each image, but colors like blue can stray very far and not be detectable by the human vision system. The PenTile adaptive filters comprehend this and carefully position the amount of energy into each subpixel to retain sharpness and to maintain the true color. The center of luminance represents the location of each pixel and each pixel can have any color. If the display has a high enough dpi you will not see any jaggies. For a 10.1” tablet display 300 dpi more than enough to hide any pattern visibility. The eye does not care about rigid groupings of 3 color dots.

      Furthermore, you can write to this display as many black and white line pairs in any direction as you could with a conventional RGB stripe and can get more than 50% modulation contrast ratio. There is a white-paper on the Nouvoyance website that shows in detail how this measurement can be done. That is the definition of resolution, can easily be measured and what matches that which they eye really sees.

    • It can understand why might think that this display would have less color resolution, but the measurement data proves otherwise. The experts in display metrology have written a spec for measuring display resolution, which says nothing about measuring dots, but describes a method for measuring what is known as contrast modulation ratio. This tells you how many black and white lines (or color lines) that can be written on a display. On this display one has to be able to write 1280 black and white line pairs in one direction and 800 line pairs in the other direction and one has to show that there is a contrast modulation ratio of more than 50%. The PenTile RGBW meets and exceeds the display industry spec. The other thing to keep in mind is that not all color is well localized by the human vision system. A grid of oranges and blues will not look at all jagged as the eye cannot really tell where a blue subpixel is located.

      Perhaps the only way to really convince you is to have to come take a look at this at the SID Display Week show in LA next week. I will bet you won’t think that there is anything nasty looking about this display.

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