SMPTE/QD Vision Webinar Explains Quantum-Dot Illumination - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 38 Old 04-02-2014, 05:41 PM - Thread Starter
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This week, I attended a webinar hosted by SMPTE (Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers), the first in its new Emerging Technology series. The title was "Quantum Dot Color for Motion Pictures and Television," presented by Seth Coe-Sullivan, co-founder and CTO of QD Vision, one of the primary players in the emerging field of quantum-dot illumination.

 

First off, what is a quantum dot? It's a sphere of crystalline semiconductor material, such as cadmium selenide, measuring 2 to 10 nanometers in diameter and coated with a shell of something like zinc cadmium sulfide and hair-like structures called ligands, which are small organic molecules that prevent other molecules from binding to the surface and facilitate the processing within polymer solutions. Because they are so small, quantum dots exhibit quantum-mechanical properties—in particular, they absorb blue photons (light "particles") and then emit photons in a very narrow range of wavelengths that directly correlates to their size. The larger the quantum dot, the longer the wavelength of the emitted light—small dots emit blue light, medium-sized dots emit green light, and large dots emit red light. ("Small," "medium," and "large" are relative here; they are all microscopic.)

 

Quantum dots consist of a spherical core coated with a shell and hair-like ligands. The dots absorb blue light and then emit light of specific wavelengths depending on their size. (Courtesy SMPTE and QD Vision)

 

Amazingly, the size of quantum dots can be controlled with great precision during the fabrication process, in which specific chemicals are mixed and heated. For LCD TVs, companies like QD Vision make red and green quantum dots and use blue LEDs to stimulate them. Only a portion of the blue light from the LEDs is absorbed, and the remaining blue light combines with the red and green light from the quantum dots to form white light, which then passes through the panel's light-guide plate and then through the LCD subpixel cells and their color filters.

 

Red and green quantum dots can be used with blue LEDs in one of three ways to create white light for LCD TVs. QD Vision's system places long, thin tubes filled with red and green quantum dots along one or more edges of the screen and replaces the white edgelight LEDs with blue ones. Another company called Nanosys has created a thin film of quantum dots that lies behind the LCD layer and is activated by blue LEDs along the edges of the screen. Another approach combines a blue LED with red and green quantum dots in an integrated, self-contained module sometimes called a QLED.

 

QD Vision's edgelighting system (left) is used in Sony's new Triluminous TVs. Nanosys' QD film (center) is used in the Kindle Fire HDX. It's also possible to integrate red and green quantum dots with a blue LED in a small, self-contained module. (Courtesy SMPTE and QD Vision)

 

If quantum dots and blue LEDs combine to produce white light, why not just use white LEDs? One reason is that the spectrum of light from white LEDs is quite spread out, with a big peak in the blue range and smaller peaks at green and red and lots of energy at other wavelengths. This wastes a lot of light that doesn't make it through the LCD panel's color filters and results in less-saturated colors. By contrast, quantum-dot systems have strong peaks at red, green, and blue with little energy at other wavelengths, leading to much more saturated colors. Even better, the quantum dots are precisely tunable, so the specific colors of red, green, and blue can be optimized as needed.

 

In this diagram, the light-blue curve represents a typical spectrum from a conventional white-LED LCD TV. With quantum dots, the spectrum is tunable to any colors of red, green, and blue, and each color is limited to a narrow band. (Courtesy SMPTE and QD Vision)

 

Another advantage is the potential for a much wider color gamut. In fact, quantum dots can get very close to the Rec.2020 color gamut, which is far beyond the current Rec.709 standard.

 

The color gamut of quantum dots far exceeds Rec.709; in fact, it's greater than 100% of the NTSC, Adobe RGB, and DCI (Digital Cinema Initiative) P3 gamuts. (Courtesy SMPTE and QD Vision)

 

The benefits of an expanded color gamut are simulated in this collection of images. Note the greater saturation in the upper images, which represent an expanded gamut. (Courtesy SMPTE and QD Vision)

 

I've often argued that an expanded color gamut in a display is useless—even detrimental—as long as virtually all consumer content is mastered in Rec.709. After all, if Rec.709 content is shown with an expanded gamut, it's distorted and not what the content creator saw in the color-grading process. But during the webinar, Seth asserted that an expanded gamut in the display is beneficial because it's more flexible, as illustrated in the graphics below. That makes a lot of sense, though I still think it's important for the industry to standardize on a particular gamut for UHD.

 

A Rec.709 display can accurately reproduce a Rec.709 signal, but nothing else. By contrast, a "full-gamut" display can reproduce Rec.709, DCI P3, and Adobe RGB with appropriate color-control algorithms. It can also reproduce a Rec.709 signal with the "colorfulness" (i.e., enhanced colors) of DCI P3 and Adobe RGB, as long as the gamut expansion is performed without changing important colors like skin tones. (Courtesy SMPTE and QD Vision)

 

In this example from Portrait Displays, an image captured in Rec.709 (left) looks desaturated on a display with a smaller gamut (top right). It looks correct on a display with a Rec.709 gamut (center right), and it looks all wrong on a display with a wider gamut (lower right). However, the display with a wider gamut can be made to accurately reproduce the image with the appropriate color-control algorithm. (Courtesy SMPTE and QD Vision)

 

In this example, the original image was captured in a wide gamut (left). It looks washed out and desaturated on a Rec.709 display (top right), while a wide-gamut display reproduces it accurately (lower right). (Courtesy SMPTE and QD Vision)

 

Many people compare quantum-dot displays with OLED TVs—after all, both have been anticipated for years, and it was unclear which would make it to market first. That race was more or less a tie—both appeared in consumer products last year. But which one will end up dominating the flat-panel market?

 

According to Seth, quantum-dot technology has several distinct advantages over OLED, including much greater power efficiency, slightly larger color gamut, and much lower cost. Also, quantum-dot illumination can be easily incorporated into the existing LED-LCD TV-manufacturing infrastructure, and the yields of QD production are nearly 100%. By most reports, OLED yields are much lower.

 

Then there's lifespan. Seth claimed that QD tube- and film-based systems last around 30,000 hours (less for integrated QD/LED modules because of the greater light intensity and heat within the module), while the longevity of OLED, especially the blue color, is still uncertain. Finally, QD-LCD TVs are already being made with UHD resolution, while currently available OLED TVs are 1080p.

 

I see only a couple of significant advantages with OLED. One is viewing angle, which all LCD TVs have trouble with to one degree or another. Granted, IPS (in-plane switching) panels are better in this regard than VA (vertical alignment) panels, but even IPS panels look different when viewed from far off-axis. OLED does not have this problem at all. Also, OLED is far better at reproducing deep blacks, especially since there is no way to implement full-array local dimming with the types of QD displays Seth talked about. I asked him about placing blue LEDs in an array behind a QD film, which he said was entirely possible.

 

All in all, this webinar was very interesting and a welcome intro to a subject that will become increasingly important in the near future. I thank SMPTE and Seth Coe-Sullivan for putting it together, and I look forward to more webinars in the Emerging Technology series.

 

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post #2 of 38 Old 04-02-2014, 06:07 PM
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Fantastic article!
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post #3 of 38 Old 04-02-2014, 08:14 PM
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thank you, great article!
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post #4 of 38 Old 04-02-2014, 09:22 PM
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I kind of lost faith when it got the part that FALD is 'not possible' with this.

if there's one thing I've learned from experience, it's to never, ever buy an edge-lit display again. they just don't fit my needs, and having returned 3 of them before realizing clouding was considered 'normal' and not a 'major defect' like I saw it, I do not want to go through that ever again.

it's a shame these 'advancements' don't seem to be fixing any of the actual problems. I mean, what's the point of this really if it doesn't fix viewing angles, black levels, or contrast? how saturated can colors really be if the display can't produce black?

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post #5 of 38 Old 04-03-2014, 03:30 AM
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edge-lit ...
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post #6 of 38 Old 04-03-2014, 06:57 AM
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Great article Scott! I own Sonys W900a and it's a Triluminous Display. It's hands down the best TV I've ever owned. I posted these pics in the W9
Thread but this should give you an idea how saturated colors can get and this is with the live color set to low! Also the TV has great inky blacks.
This is the game Infamous on the PS4.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Wilkinson 
QD Vision's edgelighting system is used in Sony's new Triluminos

Several 2013 Sony series use QD Vision stuff. Sony does not mention QD Vision anymore so they probably stopped using it. Actually no TV Manufacturer seems to use QD Vision in 2014.
Quote:
Although, QD technology created a stir on the market, the high price tag and Cadium(Cd) containment have impacted the product's acceptance in the European and U.S. market. Manufacturers new (2014) high color gamut products will be consisted of red phosphors and blue green phosphors powders combined with blue chips. The new products will reach 100% NTSC and SRGB will also surpass 100%.

http://global.ofweek.com/news/Red-phosphor-powder-used-in-making-high-color-gamut-TVs-8077
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Is the film practical/affordable for larger displays and would using it cure most of the problems inherent in edge-lit displays?  Are there other PQ problems associated with it?

 

If I am understanding it correctly, my concern is that Quantum Dot's incompatibility with FALD will likely force a choice between sticking with edge-lit display technology for improvements in WCG vs. going to FALD for more significant improvements in HDR and black levels.

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I've been communicating with Seth Coe-Sullivan after the webinar, and I asked him about FALD. He said it's entirely possible to place blue LEDs in an array behind a QD film, which is good news. I hope some manufacturer does this.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Wilkinson View Post

I've been communicating with Seth Coe-Sullivan after the webinar, and I asked him about FALD. He said it's entirely possible to place blue LEDs in an array behind a QD film, which is good news. I hope some manufacturer does this.

Thanks again Scott for the great write up. Do you happen to know if any of the new Sony TV's ( XBR 850B/ 900B /950) or any other model have QD technology in them? If so which type?
I know they are Triluminous displays but I am not sure if they are using QD. The only set from Sony, that I am aware of, that has QD technology was the Sony KDL-55W900A . Link below

http://www.cnet.com/products/sony-kdl-55w900a/

Thanks

Paul
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Originally Posted by hidefpaul View Post


Thanks again Scott for the great write up. Do you happen to know if any of the new Sony TV's ( XBR 850B/ 900B /950) or any other model have QD technology in them? If so which type?
I know they are Triluminous displays but I am not sure if they are using QD. The only set from Sony, that I am aware of, that has QD technology was the Sony KDL-55W900A . Link below

http://www.cnet.com/products/sony-kdl-55w900a/

Thanks

Paul


As far as I know, any modern Sony TV identified as Triluminous has QD illumination. As I recall, Sony also used the term Triluminous to refer to RGB LED backlighting, but that was some time ago; they resurrected the term for QD illumination.


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My W900a has the QD Vision's Color IQ™ logo at the bottom right had corner. Is QD Vision providing the QD tech for Sony's 2014 models?
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I actually just talked to and expectutive today from sony on this topic of over saturated simulation color. I met him at best buy at 10:30 and we disccused many things but he refused to go into detail about the depth of the IPS panel used. Infact he refuesed to comment at all stating he couldnt talk about the tech. I felt like sony didnt even tell there own exects the exact specs.

What I got from our argument was:
Sony tvs can now put out the best color *they think Represents the final picture color*, might not be what you want tho.

i am someone who uses Photoshop on my HDTV which is well calibrated but I have decided Sonys tv are all for show now, not raising gamit color strength or color bit depth in anyway just a Photoshop job in itself.

Also  I overheard one exect say to another that "the color depth seems is low to him and the software overcompensates alot on our  new models". He was looking at a BRAND NEW un65h8000 from samsung.

 

Personally i think he wanted one.

 

 

 

What i was most impressed by so far in all 2014 hdtv and 2.5-4k tvs is that they all have great software to render the images, Less noise and a whole hell of alot less artifacts from last years models. Samsung is to me the best this year to date with there lineup with up-scaling and reduced artifacts showing in the videos i watched.

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Originally Posted by helvetica bold View Post

My W900a has the QD Vision's Color IQ™ logo at the bottom right had corner. Is QD Vision providing the QD tech for Sony's 2014 models?


I asked Seth about this, and he was not allowed to comment. He suggested asking Sony, but then noticed from the comments here that even its execs might not know. This turns out to be a difficult question to answer definitively.


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My W900a has the QD Vision's Color IQ™ logo at the bottom right had corner. Is QD Vision providing the QD tech for Sony's 2014 models?

No.
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So this is still LCD right?

'Color' me uninterested. If you can't reproduce a convincing shade of black without turning the lights off I don't care how much color you can give me. I'd rather take a straight shot to the wedding vegetables than put up with an expensive, 4k, quantum super LCD that can't even match my old, defunct plasma in contrast.
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Excellent, excellent write up Scott and its very much appreciated. Its nice knowing I have a tv, my W900, that has one of the best technologies out there. I wouldn't part with my W9 for anything.

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I kind of lost faith when it got the part that FALD is 'not possible' with this.

if there's one thing I've learned from experience, it's to never, ever buy an edge-lit display again. they just don't fit my needs, and having returned 3 of them before realizing clouding was considered 'normal' and not a 'major defect' like I saw it, I do not want to go through that ever again.

it's a shame these 'advancements' don't seem to be fixing any of the actual problems. I mean, what's the point of this really if it doesn't fix viewing angles, black levels, or contrast? how saturated can colors really be if the display can't produce black?


After I first posted this piece, I learned that FALD is, in fact, possible by putting an array of blue LEDs behind a QD film. I don't think anyone has done that yet, but we can always hope. I updated the article to reflect this.

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Originally Posted by sage11x View Post

So this is still LCD right?

'Color' me uninterested. If you can't reproduce a convincing shade of black without turning the lights off I don't care how much color you can give me. I'd rather take a straight shot to the wedding vegetables than put up with an expensive, 4k, quantum super LCD that can't even match my old, defunct plasma in contrast.


Yep, LCD. It's a backlight-illumination technology


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post #20 of 38 Old 04-05-2014, 12:23 AM
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After I first posted this piece, I learned that FALD is, in fact, possible by putting an array of blue LEDs behind a QD film. I don't think anyone has done that yet, but we can always hope. I updated the article to reflect this.

good to hear, now I can go back to being mad at the exec's that will decide to use the cheap edge-lit design and be happy that the engineers are at least designing tech that COULD be an improvement, haha.

sometimes I am really surprised how much time and effort goes into making LCD 'good'. i dunno, maybe i know just enough to get myself in trouble, but it really seems like there's a LOT of 'break throughs' in LCD tech that still don't reach the pq levels of plasma or oled. i don't understand why the industry is pushing so hard to make lcd 'good' instead pushing to make plasma or oled 'great'.

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Because they believe they have maxed out the course for plasma. It was also becoming extremely costly and not rewarding like LCD is to them.
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Quote:
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Wilkinson View Post


After I first posted this piece, I learned that FALD is, in fact, possible by putting an array of blue LEDs behind a QD film. I don't think anyone has done that yet, but we can always hope. I updated the article to reflect this.

good to hear, now I can go back to being mad at the exec's that will decide to use the cheap edge-lit design and be happy that the engineers are at least designing tech that COULD be an improvement, haha.

sometimes I am really surprised how much time and effort goes into making LCD 'good'. i dunno, maybe i know just enough to get myself in trouble, but it really seems like there's a LOT of 'break throughs' in LCD tech that still don't reach the pq levels of plasma or oled. i don't understand why the industry is pushing so hard to make lcd 'good' instead pushing to make plasma or oled 'great'.


I wouldnt call Edge Lit a "Cheap" design because its not anymore. Take a look at some of the high end TV's that are now using it, they are almost as good as an FALD set. And why is the industry pushing so hard to make LCD "Good"? Its because they know Plasma has reached the end of the line and OLED is just to expensive to produce right now in big quantities.

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Because they believe they have maxed out the course for plasma. It was also becoming extremely costly and not rewarding like LCD is to them.


Like it or not LCD is a money maker and Plasma isn't. Pioneer found that out and so did Panasonic. Like you said Plasma has been maxed out and was to costly and not rewarding. I feel after Pioneer quit making the beautiful Kuro's plasma's fate was sealed.
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Plasma just isn't an option for some people. I game on my TV, and I couldn't deal with the image retention/burn-in.

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After I first posted this piece, I learned that FALD is, in fact, possible by putting an array of blue LEDs behind a QD film. I don't think anyone has done that yet, but we can always hope. I updated the article to reflect this.

good to hear, now I can go back to being mad at the exec's that will decide to use the cheap edge-lit design and be happy that the engineers are at least designing tech that COULD be an improvement, haha.

sometimes I am really surprised how much time and effort goes into making LCD 'good'. i dunno, maybe i know just enough to get myself in trouble, but it really seems like there's a LOT of 'break throughs' in LCD tech that still don't reach the pq levels of plasma or oled. i don't understand why the industry is pushing so hard to make lcd 'good' instead pushing to make plasma or oled 'great'.


I wouldnt call Edge Lit a "Cheap" design because its not anymore. Take a look at some of the high end TV's that are now using it, they are almost as good as an FALD set. And why is the industry pushing so hard to make LCD "Good"? Its because they know Plasma has reached the end of the line and OLED is just to expensive to produce right now in big quantities.

The best FALD LED/LCD manufactured to date has been the Sharp Elite. Many consider this TV to have challenged plasma in terms of black levels and shadow detail.

Without wasting time comparing to any of the greatly inferior FALD LED/LCDs implemented before and since, I'd appreciate a list of any high-end Edge-Lit LED/LCD TV that you believe come anywhere close to the Sharp Elite in terms of dark level and shadow detail (without introducing distracting blooming).

The Samsung F8000 and the Sony X900A don't come anywhere close, as an example of the 'best' edge-lit LED/LCDs from 2013 compared to a state-of-the-art FALD LED/LCD like the Elite.

If black level and shadow detail are not a priority for you n terms of how you judge picture quality, I can understand why you made the statement that you did. But if 'good' means good (near-black) black levels and shadow detail, I can't agree with what you have said.
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post #26 of 38 Old 04-05-2014, 02:14 PM
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well I'm currently looking for an LED tv. I decided not to buy a plasma because it was not rewarding for me in a longrun. I have been looking at a 60,65" sharp and the Samsung 8000. And I do game on my tv
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post #27 of 38 Old 04-07-2014, 07:37 AM
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What is the advantage of QD over using Red, Green and Blue LEDs? Wouldn't the three LEDs have a very similar 3-peak spectrum to that of the QD method?
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post #28 of 38 Old 04-07-2014, 07:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fafrd View Post


The best FALD LED/LCD manufactured to date has been the Sharp Elite. Many consider this TV to have challenged plasma in terms of black levels and shadow detail.

Without wasting time comparing to any of the greatly inferior FALD LED/LCDs implemented before and since, I'd appreciate a list of any high-end Edge-Lit LED/LCD TV that you believe come anywhere close to the Sharp Elite in terms of dark level and shadow detail (without introducing distracting blooming).

The Samsung F8000 and the Sony X900A don't come anywhere close, as an example of the 'best' edge-lit LED/LCDs from 2013 compared to a state-of-the-art FALD LED/LCD like the Elite.

If black level and shadow detail are not a priority for you n terms of how you judge picture quality, I can understand why you made the statement that you did. But if 'good' means good (near-black) black levels and shadow detail, I can't agree with what you have said.


Based on the specs and preliminary reviews of sets like the Sony XBRxxX950B and Vizio R series, I think 2014 will be the year that the Elite is finally surpassed as the best LED/LCD tv of all time.

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post #29 of 38 Old 04-07-2014, 02:30 PM
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What a great post. Thanks for this. Are there or have there ever been any 65" or larger TVs using this quantum dot technology? Sony throws around marketing buzz words to cover certain properties of their TVs that aren't necessarily consistent with technical specifications. All I have been able to confirm so far is that the 55" W900A from 2013 uses quantum dots. The 65" W850A does not. Both are called Triluminos. Can anyone confirm whether any of Sony's X900A TVs or the Sony S990 TV uses quantum dots? The colours on the S990A that I've seen certainly look better than normal, and it's marketed as being Triluminos, but I've seen no confirmation that it actually uses quantum dots so far. Why is this information so hard to find?
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post #30 of 38 Old 04-11-2014, 11:39 AM
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First off, what is a quantum dot? It's a sphere of crystalline semiconductor material, such as cadmium selenide, measuring 2 to 10 nanometers in diameter and coated with a shell of something like zinc cadmium sulfide and hair-like structures called ligands, which are small organic molecules that prevent other molecules from binding to the surface and facilitate the processing within polymer solutions. Because they are so small, quantum dots exhibit quantum-mechanical properties—in particular, they absorb blue photons (light "particles") and then emit photons in a very narrow range of wavelengths that directly correlates to their size.
Since the coating absorbs energy and emits photons, is this considered analogous to phosphor emission such as in plasma and OLED? Unlike those technologies where the light source is driven directly by the video (which can cause local area "burns"), it is driven at full intensity at all times. As the QD devices ages, does it increase in color temperature with the red and green output declining? If so, is this a gradual change or is it stable for a period time with a greater rate of change afterward.
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