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Sharp PN-K321 32in 4K monitor debuts IGZO display technology

Tom Morgan
8 Jan 2013
Sharp PN-K321
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Sharp's IGZO display technology, first used in a 4K professional monitor revealed today, should pave the way to more affordable OLED panels

Sharp has announced the PN-K321, a 32in professional monitor with a 3,840x2,160 4K resolution, today at CES - it will be the first screen to use Sharp's IGZO display technology, previously only seen in Japanese smartphones.

IGZO, which stands for Indium gallium zinc oxide, uses much smaller thin film transistors (TFTs) than traditional displays, significantly increasing the amount of light transmitted per pixel. It also uses up to 90% less power when displaying still images, leading to significant energy savings over regular displays.

IGZO panels were developed in cooperation with toughened glass specialists Corning, who produced a new design known as Lotus glass specifically for the new display technology. Unlike Gorilla glass, which is commonly found in smartphones and tablets, Lotus Glass has to withstand high temperatures used in the manufacture of IGZO panels, which is why the partnership was so important for Sharp.

The results are impressive – Sharp is claiming it’s far easier to produce 4K panels using IGZO over traditional LCDs, particularly at smaller screen sizes, and could pave the way to cheaper OLED screens in the near future. We’re still waiting to see the display tech in the flesh, as it won’t appear on Sharp’s CES stand until tomorrow.

With a planned February launch, designers and industry professionals won't have to wait long to buy a PN-K321. Unfortaunately, Sharp has yet to comment on pricing, so we'll be heading over to the company's stand to get some more information here at CES.

Also announced today were Sharp's upcoming display technologies, including Moth Eye support coming next year. Currently Philips is the only TV manufacturer to use moth eye technology, which significantly reduces screen glare and light reflections compared to traditional screen treatments.

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