In recent years, cathode-ray tube (CRT) displays have gradually faded in favor of liquid-crystal displays (LCDs). Whether it’s a computer monitor, smartphone, tablet or a human machine interface (HMI), most displays are now powered by LCD technology. If you’re thinking about purchasing a new LCD, though, you might be wondering how long they last.
The Average Lifespan of CRT Displays
Before we reveal the lifespan of LCDs, let’s first take a closer look at their CRT counterparts. Throughout the latter half of the 21st century, most display devices were powered by CRT technology. If you’ve ever owned a CRT before, you’re probably well aware of their relatively short lifespan. A typical CRT display only lasts for about 20,000 to 30,000 hours of use, at which point it must be repaired or replaced.
The Average Lifespan of LCD Displays
LCDs have a much longer lifespan than CRT displays. Depending on the type of backlighting technology used, an LCD may last two or even three times longer than a CRT display of a similar size. A CRT display, for instance, might last for just 20,000 hours, whereas an LCD may last for 60,000 hours. Some LCDs, in fact, offer an even longer lifespan. Regardless, you can rest assured knowing that LCDs last a very long time — typically two to three times longer than CRT displays.
Why LCDs Last Longer Than Than CRT Displays
Now for the million-dollar question: Why do LCDs last so much longer than CRT displays? The primary reason for their exceptionally long lifespan lies in their backlighting. Unlike CRT displays, LCDs aren’t capable of producing light themselves. Instead, they rely on a separate component, known as backlighting, to illuminate the pixels and project visible images.
CRTs are distinguished from LCDs because of their ability to produce light. They contain cathode-ray rubes that illuminate the corresponding pixels. Unfortunately, the native backlighting technology used in CRTs isn’t particularly efficient. CRTs tend to burn out quickly, resulting in a short lifespan.
LEDs, on the other hand, use energy-efficient backlighting technologies like light-emitting diode (LED) to offer an exceptionally longer lifespan than CRT displays. In terms of lighting, LEDs last longer than most other lighting technologies. As a result, LCDs are able to last a long time as well. It’s not uncommon for LCDs to last for 40,000 to 60,000 hours. The bottom line is that LCDs last a long time because they use modern and energy-efficient backlighting solutions, specifically LED.