TFT Displays

All about TFT displays

Televisions, computer screens, tablets, notebooks, cell phones. Nowadays all these products are equipped with a TFT display. Not even mentioning industrial, medical, marine and automotive applications.

TFT is an active LCD technology and is revolutionary in the field of full color displays. TFT displays are also called active matrix displays.

Want to find out more? We’ll explain all about TFT displays.

What is a TFT display?

SKY explains

LCD vs. TFT Display

The terms LCD display and TFT display (or active matrix display) are often used interchangeably. But what’s the difference?

An LCD (Liquid Crystal Display) is a flat display with a low power consumption. Liquid crystals are embedded between two layers of polarizing material. Behind the layers, a backlight is placed. By regulating the voltage between the glass plates, the crystals will rotate and the light transmittance can be adjusted. Displaying an image on the LCD.

A TFT display (Thin-Film Transistor) uses thin film transistor technology. Adding this layer to an LCD will provide a better and sharper image. Therefore, a TFT display (or active matrix display) is actually an improved version of an LCD display.

LCD vs. TFT display
TFT display lagen

How does a TFT display work?

A TFT is made by combining a thin film of a semi-conductive active layer with a layer that acts as an electrical insulator. They are laid on a supported under layer together with metal contacts.

An LCD pixel is then actively controlled by one to four transistors. By adjusting the voltage, the transistors turn the pixels on and off easily. Red, green and blue color filters are placed on the inside of the top glass to show the color information. The intensity of light transmission is controlled by color filters. As a result, millions of colors can be displayed on one screen.

The embedded TFT layer on the screen reduces crosstalk between pixels. Crosstalk occurs when a signal sent to a pixel, also affects the pixel next to it. This makes TFT display technology the technology that offers the best resolution and image quality. TFT’s are therefore more expensive than regular LCD’s.

TFT displays have become todays standard in producing LCD monitors.

TFT display technologies

TFT display specifications

Take this into account

Custom or standard

Standard, customized or fully custom design. A bespoke TFT display.


Is the display used inside or outside? Consider the environment.


Small (t0 10 inch), medium (to 22 inch) and large (from 22 inch) TFT displays.


What resolution does your application ask for?

Brightness & backlight

The resolution, backlight and ambient light determine the brightness of the TFT display.

TFT display
TFT display-2


What interface does the display need? SPI, I2C, RGB, LVDS or MIPI?

Contrast & viewing angles

The application determines the required contrast and viewing angles.


Does the TFT display need to be able to withstand extreme heat or cold? We take this into consideration.

Active area

The active area of the display is the blackened edge where no image can be seen.


How long does the TFT display need to be available? Once? Or long term?

Martijn Bustraan

Questions or advice?

Martijn Bustraan

Product specialist

+31 (0)251 7002 82

Interested to find out what SKY-Technology can do for your project?