Keith Peters recently got a handheld USB digital microscope, which by itself would have been quite cool, but then he took it to the next level by turning it on his gadgetry. Above-left is Peters’ scan of a Kindle screen at 26x magnification; above-right is an iPad screen at 26x magnification. Already, the difference between the Kindle’s E-ink and the iPad’s liquid crystal display is apparent, at least when we’re talking about black-and-white text:
This time around, what you see above is the Kindle at 400x magnification on the left versus the iPad at 375x magnification on the right. What you’re seeing in that almost Tron-like view of the iPad are the red, green, and blue ‘subpixels‘ that color LCDs use to “yield thousands or millions of possible colours for each pixel.” As one commenter on Peters’ post notes, it would be interesting to see how a color OLED looked under the microscope: Unlike LCDs, color OLEDs typically use a stacked pixel architecture in which red, green, and blue are all on top of one another rather than side-by-side, cutting down on pixel gap even as we see it from above.
More fun microscopy, including books, newspapers, and magazines — and some surprisingly heated discussion about the iPad/Kindle comparison (from Appleheads, of course, who bristled at Peters’ initial statement that “No wonder the Kindle is so much easier to read!”), at BIT-101.
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