How about the three mainstream packaging technologies for small pitch LED displays?

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According to the data survey, as early as 2019, the global market size of small pitch LED displays has reached 17.3 billion yuan, accounting for 38.23% of the total. And after a brief stagnation during the epidemic, a new wave of development is coming. Do you want to know the advantages of small pitch LED display?

What is a small pitch LED display

Small pitch LED display refers to the display screen with LED dot pitch of P2.5 or less, mainly including P2.5, PP1.8, P1.5, P1.25, P1.0 and other products. With the improvement of science and technology, the resolution of LED display screen has been greatly improved, which can bring a clearer, more realistic and more dynamic viewing effect to the audience.


small pitch LED displays

Application fields of small pitch LED display

The small pitch LED display screen has a wide range of applications, not only in securities, advertising media, education and other fields, but also in concert stage, Olympic Games scene, film shooting and other art scenes. With its excellent performance and super viewing experience, the small pitch LED display has gradually infiltrated people's lives and become an indispensable technology product!


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Three Mainstream Packaging Technologies for Small Space LED Displays

SMD Packaging Technology

The traditional LED display screen packaging is mainly SMD, but the smaller the spacing is, the more difficult the SMD packaging technology is, and the higher the failure rate is. In order to solve this problem, some LED display manufacturers have developed the four in one Mini LED and COB packaging technology, which has more stable performance. Then, what is the comparison and development trend of the three mainstream packaging technologies for small pitch LED displays?

LED display technology has developed from 720P to 1080P, and then to 4K and 8K. In addition to the larger size of LED display, the display requirements for clarity, refresh rate, color reproducibility, contrast, gray scale and high dynamic HDR have also gradually increased. At the same time, its screen is developing towards the direction of thin and light, and the display panel technology is also developing from the traditional backlight to the direction of self illumination.

In addition, with the aesthetic fatigue of terminal customers for flat display, LED display manufacturers have developed flexible soft panels. The unit module can be bent from 120 ° to 360 ° to achieve a curved surface display that can compete with OLED. At the same time, it has also developed a transparent LED screen with high permeability. In addition, the current reliability and service life of OLEDs are flawed, which makes Mini LED and Micro LED emerge at the historic moment.

Micro LED

With the continuous optimization and innovation of LED display manufacturers, the price of traditional SMD packaged LED displays has also declined, and the application fields of terminal products are also increasing. In addition, products with large spacing have been gradually withdrawn from the market, and currently, LED displays with small spacing of 1.5mm are mainly used. Some LED display manufacturers have developed products with spacing less than 1.0mm, and have achieved mass production.

LED display with dot spacing less than 2.0mm is defined as small pitch LED display, while Micro LED requires the spacing to be less than 0.01mm and the chip size to be less than 0.05mm. The spacing between Mini LED and chip size is required to be between small spacing LED display screen and Micro LED. As Mini LED and COB enter the mass production stage, their market prospects will be broader in the future.

As LED display manufacturers continue to reduce the spacing between LED displays, they are developing products from 10mm to 2mm or less, even products below 1mm. So as to continuously seize the DLP and LCD indoor display market. However, with the improvement of LED chip technology and the breakthrough of MOCVD equipment bottleneck, the cost has declined rapidly, and the final product price has fallen below the DLP screen.

According to relevant data, the market size of small pitch LED displays exceeded US $1 billion in 2017 and is expected to approach US $1.8 billion in 2020. Among these markets, the Asia Pacific region is the main region, accounting for 50-60% of the market size, followed by North America and Europe. However, traditional SMD packaging has more disadvantages with smaller spacing. Therefore, Mini LED and Micro LED have more advantages for the consumer application market with smaller spacing.

Mini LED

Micro LED is an extension of LED industry, which is similar to traditional technology in LED chip manufacturing. It also requires extension sheet, RGB tricolor crystal and assembly. Although this packaging technology is similar to panel and IC circuits, it still needs to solve the problem of massive transfer. If this problem is solved, the cost will be reduced a lot and mass production can be realized.

Because Micro LED substrate is mainly a current driven TFT structure, transferring tens of thousands of LED chips to TFT substrate (a huge transfer process) is a severe test of yield and efficiency faced by factories. If this technology is to be commercialized, the yield of micro LED must reach 99.9999%. Taking a 4K UHD panel as an example, it contains 3840 * 2160 elements, which will be converted into more than 24800000 color micro LED chips.

If the yield is 99.99%, the unqualified chips of a 4K display will reach 2788.32. If the yield is 99.9999%, only 2.49 unqualified chips will be found. It can be seen from this that the yield of micro LED massive transfer needs to be improved.

However, even though the yield of Micro LED has not been resolved, some LED display manufacturers still use Micro LED to package small pitch LED displays, and other manufacturers also use this packaging technology to package small size display devices, such as wearable consumer electronics. By 2021, this technology will be applied in the field of smart phones and televisions, and smart phones will be the main battlefield of micro LED display technology.

The Mini LED is a transitional application of small pitch LED display and Micro LED. Its advantage is that the Mini LED backlight can use the existing LCD technology foundation and combine RGB LED technology to shorten the product launch cycle. Although MiniLED is in the middle stage, there are still some problems to be solved. It also requires the joint efforts of epitaxial chips, wafers, packages, substrates, TFT backplanes, drive ICs and equipment manufacturers.

The Mini LED may be applied to TV, mobile phone, car panel, LED display screen, etc. in the future. It is estimated that the output value of Mini LED will reach US $1 billion by 2023, of which LED display and large size TV will be the mainstream of Mini LED application.

Features of SMD

With high assembly density, small size and light weight of electronic products, the volume and weight of SMT components are only about 1/10 of those of traditional plug-in components. Generally, after using SMT, the volume of electronic products is reduced by 40%~60%, and the weight is reduced by 60%~80%. High reliability and strong anti vibration capability. The solder joint defect rate is low. High frequency characteristics are good. Reduce electromagnetic and radio frequency interference. It is easy to realize automation and improve production efficiency. Reduce the cost by 30%~50%. Save materials, energy, equipment, manpower, time, etc.


To sum up, SMD is mainly used for LED display packaging technology, while Mini LED and Micro LED technology can be used not only for small pitch LED displays, but also for mobile phones, televisions, watches, car panels and small size screens. However, since Mini LED and Micro LED still need to solve huge problems and cost problems, SMD is still the main packaging method of LED display.

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