Light-emitting diodes (LEDs) are often used as backlighting solutions for display devices. All liquid-crystal displays (LCDs), for instance, require a backlighting solution. LEDs don’t have self-illuminating pixels. Backlighting, however, will illuminate their pixels so that the LCDs produce images.

When researching backlighting solutions for LCDs, you may come across edge-lit LED. Edge-lit LED is a backlighting solution that consists of LEDs placed along the perimeter of a display device.

Pro: Supports Low-Profile Designs

Edge-lit LED backlighting supports low-profile designs. With edge-lit LED backlighting, LEDs are only placed along the perimeter of the display device. This is in stark contrast to full-array LED backlighting, which involves a complete grid of LEDs. With LEDs only along the perimeter, edge-led backlighting supports slim, low-profile designs.

Pro: Inexpensive

When compared to other backlighting solutions, edge-lit LED backlighting typically costs less. The more LEDs used in a given backlighting solution, the more expensive it will be to produce. Edge-lit LED backlighting uses fewer LEDs than full-array LED backlighting. As a result, LCDs and other display devices with edge-lit LED backlighting typically cost less than their counterparts.

Pro: Energy Efficient

Another benefit of edge-lit LED backlighting is energy efficiency. All backlighting technologies will consume energy during use. After all, they must illuminate the display device’s pixels. Edge-lit LED backlighting, though, is energy efficient. It only uses LEDs along the perimeter of the display device. The end result is less energy consumption than that of other backlighting technologies.

Con: Weaker Contrast

You may notice that display devices with edge-lit LED backlighting have weaker contrast. Contrast is the level of difference between light and dark colors, such as white and black. Edge-lit LED backlighting still has some contrast. When compared to other backlighting technologies, though, it typically has weaker contrast, meaning brighter dark colors and darker light colors.

Con: Uneven Brightness

In addition to weaker contrast, edge-lit LED backlighting may create uneven brightness. Full-array LED backlighting is known for its even brightness. Regardless of the screen size, full-array LED backlighting offers even brightness that’s devoid of bright spots. Edge-lit LED backlighting, conversely, may suffer from uneven brightness. This alternative backlighting technology only uses LEDs along the perimeter of the display device, which makes it susceptible to uneven brightness.

Choosing the right display technology is important. Equally important, though, is choosing the right backlighting technology. Two of the most common backlighting technologies are edge-lit LED and full-array LED. Edge-lit LED supports low-profile designs, is inexpensive and energy efficient.