When i say modern monitors i’m referring to LCD displays or liquid crystal displays. Liquid crystal displays work buy having polarizes that will block light of of specific polarization. These polarizers are specially manufactured films that will let light moving in a certain way to pass and block others. We then sandwich liquid crystal between these two different type of polarizers. The liquid crystals allow use to use electricity to change the polarization of the light, which in turn allows the polarizer to block that polarization of light. The liquid crystals are electronically charge and uncharged several times a second this is their refresh rate often measured in hertz. The LCD screen uses a very bright back light to produce light from behind these polarizes. The light has to be very strong because the polarizes in front of it are there to block a large portion of it. In front of this sandwiched array of polarize – liquid crystal – polarizer are very small colored filters of three primary colors: red, green, blue. Together these three small filters make one pixel. The screen you are most likely viewing right now is a huge array of these pixels.
During the 1970’s LCD were monochrome and used often in calculators. In the 1980’s the first LCD televisions were being developed into handheld televisions. By the late 90’s LCD monitor were becoming the standard for computer displays. The benefit of LCD were tremendous they were much thinner and weighed only a fraction of the weight of a CRT monitor. They drew a lot less power nearly a half of a CRT display. The picture was drawn differently then a CRT. The LCD would refresh almost instantaneous the entire screen as many as sixty times a second whereas CRT drew each line with a electron beam. But with our electronic manufacturing the liquid crystals began to shrink like transistors did in semiconductor manufacturing this lead us to increasing resolutions. Basically our ability to make pixels smaller and smaller meant we could put more and more in a same area. Now many modern televisions are 4k meaning they display resolutions 4096 × 2160 meaning they have 4096 pixels lengthwise and 2160 pixel in height. This also affects our handheld devices with the iphone X boasting ppi of 326. That means they fit 326 pixels into a inch of space or pixels per inch.
In the beginning they also used to horrible VGA connectors and DVI connectors. You can read more about those here. But in the 2004 HDMI or High-Definition Multimedia Interface can to market. HDMI was a revolutionary new standard the connection port was small is was all digital it could carry audio, and data, and it was backward compatible with DVI. Which meant you could buy an adapter and change your DVI output into hdmi and it would work but without audio….
In the next part i’ll go over variable refresh rate technology, curved screens, OLED, and the newest connector Display Port.