One of the headlines in this year’s 12.9-inch iPad Pro was the miniLED backlight – or what Apple calls the Liquid Retina HDR screen. A couple of new photos posted on Weibo give one very pay close attention to this technology …
Apple’s description is a bit misleading, as what was new was not the screen itself, but instead the method of turning it on, as we described when it was launched.
It uses mini-LED backlighting like the $ 6,000 Apple Pro Display XDR, but somehow packs in more than 10,000 mini-LEDs with over 2,500 local dimming zones. This technology is behind the 12.9-inch iPad Pro’s contrast ratio of 1,000,000: 1, a measure of the difference between light white and dark black.
Zac Hall found that it has both pros and cons.
Mini-LED is an improvement over LED backlit displays with a long shot, and it is a convenient alternative to OLED screens found on new iPhones and every Apple Watch. The 12.9-inch screen shows noticeably better black levels and video playback with a high dynamic range that undoubtedly competes with OLED TVs.
Like OLED, you really can’t appreciate the power of mini-LEDs outside of dark user interfaces and any video content (especially HDR). I definitely notice a dark border around the white user interface that I get to know about is visible on other iPads with the same design with a thin frame […]
I expected a certain amount of flowering, the effect that happens when non-black user interface elements are backlit, and that the light squirts out in the black user interface. But the level of flowering in dark mode through non-video applications is really surprising. It is quite possible that the current software on these iPads can be optimized to take better advantage of the extra dimming zones to reduce flowering, but the launch software is not there yet (and this part has nothing to do with multitasking).
Close-ups of miniLED backlight
The two photos were posted on Weibo and discovered by DuanRui. The first shows part of a series of miniLEDs with a mung bean for comparing sizes.
To put this in perspective, a mung bean usually measures about 4 mm or 0.15 inches.
The second image shows a 30x magnification of a single miniLED under a microscope.
Check out our complete review of the 5th generation iPad Pro for more.
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