Macroblock: New LED Display Technology to Be Released in the 2nd Half of the Year

“2018 Macroblock LED Display Conference” is the most important event of the LED display industry every summer. Not only do speakers bring the latest information about trends and technology, but also Macroblock demonstrates the next-generation display cabinets that adopt the newest ICs outside the venue. The booth of Macroblock’s booth carries a lot of energy to the LED display market for 2nd half year of 2018.

Fig. 1: Macroblock’s new technology demonstration

The primary exposure of highly-integrated common cathode driver IC-MBI5759
Resulting from the rising attention to power saving needs of LED displays, common cathode topics continue to been discussed in the industry. As Fig. 2 shows, the power source of common cathode LEDs can be independent. Due to the fact that the forward voltage of a red LED is lower than others, the supply voltage can be reduced to save power (The voltage supply of red LEDS should be independent from the circuits of green and blue LEDs).

Fig 2. Scan-type circuit structure comparison of common anode and common cathode driver ICs

This year, we also demonstrate the highly-integrated common cathode solution-MBI5759, and compare the power saving performance with the highly-integrated common anode solution-MBI5359.

Except for the IC’s structures (common anode or common cathode), the other specifications (P0.9376/32S/16-bit@3840Hz) of the three modules are the same. The first one uses MBI5359 (common anode) and disables the power saving function; the second one uses MBI5359 (common anode) and enables the “Dynamic+ Power Saving (by channel)”; the third one uses MBI5759 (common cathode) and enables the “Dynamic+ Power Saving (by channel)”. According to the numbers shown of three power meters (Fig. 3), the “MBI5759 module” has the best power saving performance. When compared to the “MBI5359 module” (enable Dynamic+ Power Saving), the module using MBI5759 can decrease extra power consumption by 10%. Consequently, these excellent power saving and lower surface temperature features make MBI5759 be more suitable for 24/7 applications, such as control rooms, broadcasting rooms, etc.

Fig. 3. Power saving effect comparison

The highest industry standard- HDR-Optimized facilitates an immersive experience
The premium LED theaters promoted by Samsung have shaken up both the LED display industry and movie industry. Samsung emphasizes its “HDR” and “High Contrast” features continuously. This is because they want to make an immersive environment to exceed the visual performance brought by digital cinemas.

Adopting MBI5359 to make LED displays is not only to realize the HDR effect, but also to upgrade visual performance to the highest standard of LED display industry-- HDR-Optimized (16-bit@4KHz). Using the 16-bit grayscale output to deliver the HDR source (10-bit), it keeps more image details and reveals the real value of this HDR source.

At Macroblock’s seminar booth, we compare “General Display Spec. (Input: SDR (8-bit); Output: 14-bit@4KHz)” with “HDR-Optimized (Input: HDR (10-bit); Output: 16-bit@4KHz)”. Visitors can see right away the stark contrast between the two with HDR-Optimized having the ability to retain more image details especially in dark areas while images that are seen from the General Display Spec. appearing more blurry. HDR-Optimized contains more visual layers, resulting in a more stereoscopic image to realize the concept of immersive experience. This helps achieve the ultimate goal of display technology to bring vicarious visual experience to viewers who can now deserve the real world perfectly, as it really is, on the display.

Fig. 4. HDR-Optimized retains image details and helps to create an immersive experience

*Note: HDR-Optimized display uses MBI5359 and is powered by Novastar MCTRL4K controller.

A major breakthrough of mini-LED’s yield rate and BT. 2020 color gamut
At infocomm 2018, many manufacturers proposed mini-LED solutions. Those “mini-LED” cabinets (actually, they are conventional COB solutions) use face-up chips. However, the mini-LED cabinets made by Macroblock and PlayNitride adopt flip chips, which have better performance regarding three indicators: heat dissipation, light efficiency, and light uniformity over COB solutions.

When comparing Fig.5 to Fig.6, needless to say, Macroblock has made a breakthrough with its production challenge, and the yield rate has risen to 99.99%. The mini-LED can present more sophisticated and richer color images with a wider angle than SMD LED displays. Also, based on the measurement result, Macroblock’s mini-LED solution which can achieve 84% BT.2020 color gamut (equal to 150% REC.709 color gamut) is the best solution to date.

Note, Sony’s CLEDIS can reach 140% REC.709 color gamut.

Left: Fig 5. The image of mini-LED is fine and smooth (demonstration of Seminar 2018)
Right: Fig. 6. The mini-LED’s demonstration at Macroblock’s Seminar in 2017

The first choice of 16-channel driver IC solution
MBI5253, the latest 16-channel driver IC solution from the Hawkeye series, legacies the great property of MBI5153 and has made improvements on the most difficult visual problem “High Contrast Interference”. As Fig. 7 shows, the display is not affected by a bright block or a black block. Therefore, the visual quality of an LED display can be upgraded when using the solution.
Regardless of a fixed installation or rental applications, it is suitable to use MBI5253 for pitch over 1.2mm products.

Fig. 7. Upper: MBI5253 P1.667 cabinet; Lower: Improve high contrast interference

48-channel highly-integrated entry-level driver IC-MBI5325

Fig. 8. Product roadmap of Macroblock

Since the pixel pitch of LED rental display becomes smaller, Based on MBI5124 (the most common use driver IC for middle-level products), Macroblock develops the highly integrated entry-level driver IC-MBI5325 for finer pitch rental display products. MBI5325 is embedded the double edge-triggered function to increase data transmission rate and to improve EMI issues. In addition, MBI5325 also features ghosting elimination, and the D-PWM function is really a high cost-performance driver IC solution.

Left: Fig. 9. MBI5325: good image quality and without text ghosting
Right: Fig. 10. Simplify PCB layout

“MBI set-top box "adds value to LED displays
We are in full swing, determined to bring out the ultimate value of LED displays, we are not limiting ourselves to sole IC design. Knowing that the Internet of Things (IoT) is a growing trend that cannot be discarded as a fad, we have introduced our MBI set-top box suitable for use in retail stores, shopping malls, and supermarkets that is bound to add value to an LED display.

This added piece is a sleek, easy to install hardware that fits snugly at the back of a display, instantly transforming a “passive” display to an “active” one that is capable to actively collect valuable data of use to advertisement owners and interact with viewers by displaying ads that may be of interest to them. With a built-in facial recognition feature, MBI set-top box can gather relevant data such as the audience’s demographics, dwell time in front of the display, and standing distance from the display to name a few.

With an intelligent cloud management platform and a user-friendly interface, our content management system allows users to analyze, hence accurately determine their target audience, allowing ad owners to make more effective business strategies benefitting not just themselves but also the viewing audience. Additionally, ad owners can now manage their ads shown in different areas and parts of the world remotely using the cloud management platform, making ad management a lot easier.

Installing MBI’s set-top box thus translates to the greater good of the people within the LED display industry—display makers and buyers alike—as well as well as the viewing audience.

Fig. 11. MBI set-top box

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