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Apple prepping LED-lit Cinema Displays?

updated 12:35 pm EDT, Wed August 6, 2008

New Cinema Display at MWSF

Apple may have a long-awaited update to its Cinema Display line in store for early next year, according to a new rumor. The company has largely left the displays alone since mid-2004 outside of minor panel upgrades but is now allegedly planning an upgrade as part of an environmentally friendly switch: at least some models in the plan will include LED backlighting, which would fulfill Apple chief Steve Jobs' plans to eliminate mercury from displays as soon as possible by dropping cold-cathode fluorescent (CCFL) backlights.

LED lighting would also improve the displays' standing for visual professionals. The technology produces even lighting across the entire display that helps with color accuracy and often boosts contrast ratios.

Cost is cited as a potential setback to introducing a complete range of LED displays. A 30-inch model with the advanced lighting, such as the Samsung XL30, frequently costs over $4,700; smaller displays such as the 20-inch XL20 are often priced nearing $1,200. A switchover would require either a large reduction in the cost of manufacturing or a new approach that brings the prices closer to those for existing CCFL displays from Apple, which start at $599 and finish at $1,799.

No word has been received as to whether or not Apple will change display sizes or aspect ratios; Dell and others have begun offering 16:9 ratio LCDs at 24-inch and lower sizes that frequently trade some vertical resolution for a better view in HD video and a lower price.

By Electronista Staff


  1. ianpatterson

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Aug 2008


    also look for

    There are other display technolpgies to think about too. I'd be surprised if we don't see more support for HD with the arrival of HDMI as well as current connectors.

  1. Herod

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jun 2007



    as long as they dont invent some nifty connection that requires me to use some sort of 3rd party adapter after a year.....ADC anyone?

  1. testudo

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Aug 2001


    doubt on ports

    I would be surprised if they included an HDMI port. Just as I'd be surprised if they included multiple inputs.

  1. JeffHarris

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Oct 1999


    LONG Overdue

    It's about time!

    The current crop of Apple displays are pretty long in the tooth technologically. The refresh rate is a joke compared to even inexpensive monitors.

    LED backlighting would be a great new feature. It really looks fantastic on my MacBook Pro compared to my old PowerBook it replaced.

    HDMI would be a nice addition. As would multiple inputs. Hopefully Apple has learned their lesson about proprietary connections like ADC and will stick with DVI, FireWire and USB2 ports.

    One would expect that their new enclosures will reflect the rumored next round of case upgrades for the MacBook Pro.

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