We have some updates from LG.Display about their panel development plans which is always interesting to see. This is LG.Display as a panel manufacturer, as opposed to LG the monitor/display manufacturer, but it gives an indication of where monitors are likely to go in the future by looking ahead at the panel production plans. LG.Display make a large portion of the IPS-type panels in the market which is always of interest. Please keep in mind that the production dates are not set in stone and may change, and there is then also a lag of several months before a panel is produced, then used in a display and launched to market. We have updated our panel parts database with all the new information we have as well as best we can. Here are the highlights
Gaming Focus on High Refresh Rate and 1ms Response Time
As we talked about in our last update in May, there is talk from LG.Display about improvements in their IPS response times, reportedly trying to improve on the current 5ms G2G, pushing down down to 1ms G2G with higher levels of overdrive. It remains to be seen how successful this is in practice, and how much overshoot gets introduced but an investment in driving response times to accommodate higher refresh rates properly is certainly welcome.
We know that LG.Display already have their latest 34″ ultrawide IPS panel in mass production, the LM340UW5 which has already been used in the LG 34GK950F/G models. This offers a 3440 x 1440 resolution and native 144Hz panel refresh rate.
In the 27″ space is the forthcoming LM270WQA panel, with a 2560 x 1440 resolution and 165Hz refresh rate. This also offers a 1000:1 contrast ratio, 350 cd/m2 brightness, sRGB gamut. Originally it was not expected to go in to mass production until December 2018 but this looks like it’s been pushed back to Q2 2019 as the latest expectation. It is now listed with 1ms G2G response time spec, so perhaps the push for improved response times has led to some delay in mass production.
There is also a new panel planned (part TBC) which is 27″ in size with a 1920 x 1080 resolution. This will be an IPS offering but will support a high 240Hz refresh rate and carries the new 1ms G2G response time spec as well. So far we have only seen TN Film panels with 240Hz refresh rate, so it will be interesting to see what can be delivered using IPS technology. The response times really will need to be improved quite a lot to accommodate the high frame rate at 240Hz. This is not due to go in to production until Q3 2019 at the moment though so there will be a fair wait.
The other newly planned 27″ model is not expected until Q4 2019 but will offer an Ultra HD 3840 x 2160 resolution, 144HZ native refresh rate and 1ms G2G response time spec. This will give an alternative option to the AU Optronics panel currently used in screens like the Asus ROG Swift PG27UQ and Acer Predator X27 which will be interesting. It’s unclear whether there are plans to have HDR support or not from this forthcoming panel.
The 37.5″ ultrawide panel with 3840 x 1600 resolution which we talked about in May seems to have evolved a little. This will still feature a 144Hz refresh rate but has now also been given the 1ms G2G response time spec as well. It looks like the VESA Display HDR certification might have changed, from the original 1000 rating to 600 now. The production date has been pushed back a bit from March 2019 to Q2 2019 now as well.
There’s also a push to develop more ultrawide format screens, in sizes all the way up to 49″ – to rival what Samsung are also currently doing with their VA panels. At the largest end is the LM490DQ1 49″ IPS panel. This is a 32:9 aspect ratio and will offer a very high 5120 x 1440 resolution (DQHD) along with a 3800R curvature, 1000:1 contrast ratio, sRGB gamut and 350 cd/m2 brightness and 60Hz refresh rate. This should be in production now and has already been utilized in the forthcoming Dell U4919DW display. LG.Display are also planning another version (part number TBC) but not until Q4 2019, this time with a 144Hz refresh rate.
Investment in HDR support to comply with VESA HDR standards
HDR is obviously a very popular topic right now in the monitor space and it’s clearly a big focus from panel manufacturers and monitor vendors alike. We’ve seen already the new VESA HDR standards introduced to try and provide some kind of certification for desktop monitors, and a continued investment in pushing new options to deliver HDR performance for users in various situations, whether that’s gaming, movies or content creation. Read our detailed HDR article for a lot more information.
There is a new 31.5″ sized panel planned but not until Q4 2019. This will offers an Ultra HD 3840 x 2160 resolution and the VESA Display HDR 1000 certification. A BT.2020 colour space is also mentioned as a next stage beyond DCI-P3 coverage and a new thinner 4-side borderless design.
Around the same time in Q4 2017 there is also a new 27″ panel with 3840 x 2160 resolution and VESA HDR 600 certification and a thinner 4-side borderless design. It is not entirely clear but this may be the same 27″ panel discussed above with 144Hz refresh rate, or may be separate. They are both due to go in to production in Q4 so it could well be the same panel.
Focus on narrower 4 side borderless design
LG.Display have launched several generations of “borderless” panels, where an ultrathin plastic bezel is used to improve the overall appearance of the screen and make it more suitable for multi-monitor setups. Initially was the “Neo I” generation with a 3-side borderless design, where the bottom bezel remained thicker. Then “Neo III” came (not sure what happened to Neo II) with a 4-side borderless design. While the plastic bezels were thinner, there was still a fairly large black inner panel border before the image started so it was not truly very thin overall. Now there is a focus on providing a “real borderless” design with thinner panel borders around all 4 sides. These are not expected to appear until Q4 2019 on a couple of the panels already discussed above in the first wave. They will also be expending this 4-side borderless design to cover Ultra HD resolution panels for the first time.