What Is Better? – LED or LCD

what is better – led or lcd

Table of Contents

It happens daily that people need clarification on LED and LCD because of the shape and size of the two products. One can put the blame on the manufacturers and the increasing level of competition in this industry. However, they need to realize that there are many differences between the two, which will be clarified in this article. Simply put, all LEDs can be LCDs, but not all can be LEDs.

The difference between LCD and LED lies in the display technology that creates pictures on the screen. In comparison, full-array LEDs are superior to LCD screens.

In this article, we will draw comparison between LCD and LED in terms of longevity, picture quality, gaming experience, weight, etc. But first let’s review what LCD and LED are.  

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What is an LCD?

LCD stands for Liquid Crystal Display. This flat-panel display is used while manufacturing mobile phones, laptops, TVs, or monitors. It is different from the traditional cathodes as they have a slim design, unlike the classic bulky designs.

However, these, too, are becoming redundant because of the new technology that LCDs offer.

What is an LED?

LED stands for Light Emitting Diode, used for bigger screens such as that used in movie theatres, halls, auditoriums of companies or schools, etc. These lights were invented to facilitate humans.

These diodes are used in the flat panel display technology to generate pixels. LED can be used outdoors, unlike LCDs, because of the brightness they have to offer.

As a result, LEDs are more commonly known as third-generation displays. This is because of the new technology they offer, which is a perfect match for the requirements of the current generation.

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Difference between LCD and LED

With that bit explained, let’s move on the comparison of LCD and LED.

1. Which one of the two lasts longer?

One way of addressing which flat panel display is better, is evaluating the the lifespan of the two screens.

In the case of LCDs, they have a lifespan of around 50,000 hours. These are equivalent to 5 complete years. On the other hand, we have LEDs that last for 100,000 hours. These are equivalent to 10 complete years.

In this case, LEDs tend to last longer than LCDs.

2. Which one of the two has a better quality to offer?

The main difference between the two when judging based on quality confines to their backlight.

In the case of LCDs, their backlight is generated by fluorescent items. Whereas that of LEDs is generated through their light-emitting diodes. These diodes are better quality and more reliable than the fluorescent backlight. The pixel pitch is smaller in the case of LEDs which further adds to the quality.

However, even in the case of diodes, the configurations may vary. The contrast ratio is better in the case of LEDs as well. The image quality is enhanced when the pixels generate bright colors for their viewers.

So, the quality of LCDs could be better than that of LEDs. The difference in color accuracy can best be explained by understanding the difference between Routing and Control Board (RCB) and full Red Green and Blue (RGB) displays offered in the market.

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3. Which one is better for gaming?

Gamers rely heavily upon the reaction time that the monitors or displays can offer. The last thing they would want would be to experience any lag while playing.

So, it is essential to see which flat panel display out of the two offers a quicker response time to the gamers. The shorter the response time would be, the greater the quality will be perceived.

The reaction time in the case of LEDs is 50ms faster as compared to LCDs which is quite an edge that they have. This lag is mainly because of the Cold Cathode Fluorescent Lamp (CCFLs) used in LCDs which take a considerable amount of time to heat up. Thus reducing the refresh rate.

Gamers also believe that LED adds value and personality to their gaming experience. This is because of the curvature display that these have to offer. Hence, we can say that for gaming, LEDs are better than LCDs.

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4. Which one is heavier in weight?

When you are looking for a TV or a laptop, you often take into consideration the weight of these products. The dimensions matter because you cannot allow the LCDs or LEDs to take up most of the space in your room.

In the case of LCDs, they cannot match the dimensions that you ask for. The maximum number of inches they can offer is somewhere between 13 to 56. However, in the case of LEDs, these can be tailored to your liking. These are offered in 90 inches as well.

LCDs are also thicker than LEDs because the fluorescents require a lot of space for optimum utilization. However, LEDs tend to be thinner mainly because the light-emitting diodes barely need space.

LEDs are assembled in the same plane, due to which the quantity of diodes does not affect the thickness of the screen. If statistical figures are required, LED is usually 1/3rd. the size of a standard LCD.

In the residential areas, the space allotted to each individual decreases with every year. Due to this, the current generation tends to look for slim products which will integrate well with their needs. All while adding to the beauty of that place by being more attractive than LCDs.

5. Which one of the two requires more maintenance?

When investing in a fixed asset, e.g., TV, mobile phone, laptop, etc., an essential element to consider is the overall maintenance cost of the item.

In the case of these two substitute products, LCDs maintenance cost is much higher than that of LEDs. This is because if the smaller diodes tend to break in an LED, these can be replaced easily, which does not incur a high cost for the user.

However, in the case of LCDs, if the fluorescents do not work, the entire bulb fitted inside the screen must be replaced. This tends to be more expensive and is not readily available in the market.

Another important consideration is that the individual who tries to fix the LCD might integrate a low-quality bulb in the LCD, which would depreciate its overall value and lifespan.

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6. Which one is more expensive?

It is necessary to understand that a new offering or technology in the market will always be more costly than the previous traditional offerings.

In this case, LEDs have been launched recently in the market, due to which these are more costly than LCDs. This is considered in the short run. In the long run, however, the price point plays a minor role because of all the latest features offered in this new technology.  

7. Which one is more energy efficient?

Electricity bills are rising, and users spend more than 90% of their time in front of screens.

If you want to think about the long run, investing in an LED would be much better as it is more energy efficient than an LCD. This is because, in an LED, light-emitting diodes are used. These tend to use 10 watts less energy than the fluorescents present in LCDs. This holds true in the case of a 32-inch screen of LED.

All in all, LEDs save around 30% – 70% more energy than a standard LCD.  

8. Which one has a better viewing angle?

As discussed earlier, LEDs have a curvature design that offers a better angle than a standard LCD. This might not hold true if an edge-lit LED is being compared with an LCD.

Why? Because, in this case, the viewing angle of an LCD would be a lot better. However, if you consider a full-view LED, the viewing angle is much better than that of an LCD.

9. Which one is better for the eyes?

Another feature that LEDs have that the traditional technology used in LCDs failed to incorporate is local dimming. This feature allows the user to adjust the brightness to their liking.

Parents now do not have to worry about their children spending extra time in front of the TV or while gaming. This is just one of the eye-comfort features that LEDs have to offer. You can even use LED lights for indoor plants.

what is better – led or lcd


In the article above, LEDs and LCDs have been compared based on different attributes. Read the table given below for a quick overview of all the features that come with these options.

LifespansLast for 50,000 hoursLast for 100,000 hours
QualityAverage quality of imagesSupreme quality of images
GamingReaction time is lowReaction time 50ms faster
WeightThicker than LEDsQuite slim and customizable
MaintenanceHigh maintenance costLow maintenance cost
CostCheaper than LEDsExpensive than LCDs
Energy EfficientLess energy efficientMore energy efficient
Viewing AngleDoes not provide an extraordinary experienceCurvature design provides the best viewing angle
Effect on eyesDoes not come with local dimmingComes with local dimming
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