LCD Panel Brightness

LCD panel brightness is normally expressed in terms of Nits or Candelas/meter2 (cd/m2), they are equivalent, and refers to the manufacturers measurement under the following conditions:

  • After the backlight has had time to warm up to reach full potential,
  • From directly in front of the middle of the panel,
  • With transmissivity at maximum, so if the panel is normally white then probably with no input signal or if the panel is normally black then with a full white signal.

There are no standards for suitable brightness levels for various applications which is reasonable considering other factors will affect the outcome but as a general guideline it would seem that the following ranges apply:

  • Notebook type computers: Around 200~250 Nits
  • Desktop monitors: Typically up to 450 Nits
  • TV’s and video displays: 400~600 Nits
  • Public displays: Generally around 600~700 Nits
  • Outdoor displays: 700~1,500 Nits.

Other factors: Contrast – as I was being told this morning a 700 Nit panel with excellent contrast proved to be considerably better in an outdoor application than a 1,500 Nit panel with lower contrast. 

The bottom line is that it is very difficult to make a decision based on the specifications and the display needs to be evaluated in its environment. 

Some applications require low light visibility which is another topic.

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