Customised TFT displays offer cost benefits

Affordable customised TFT displays for all applications are available at Selectronic, the Witney, Oxfordshire, based company celebrating its 40th year. Pictured is a 12.1inch TFT display of 1024 x 768 resolution (a standard size), with a custom enhanced backlight and a bespoke pcap touch screen with radiused corners.

The extended front glass has reverse printed black border in order to provide a bezel-less fit into the customer’s housing.  The TFT and pcap are optically bonded together for optimum daylight legibility and enhanced ruggedness.

“We also produced the black TFT data and backlight power cables to mate to the customer’s chosen computer board seen in the foreground,” said Selectronic Managing Director Kevin Dry.

The yellow & black cable is an industry standard, 12VDC power input cable.

Dry continued: Custom-made TFTs seem to be everywhere these days, in cars, hand-held “tech” devices and gadgets around the home. This is great for products made in very high volume because the cost of tooling TFT glass is into the hundreds of thousands of pounds.  “Manufacturers of equipment sold in more modest volumes have more options than ever. Selectronic has access to the widest selection of TFT ‘glassware’, to enable it to produce customised modules for volumes as low as 1000 pieces.”

He explained that customising means TFT display solutions can be tailored to mechanically better fit your casing allowing you more freedom in the design.

Touch screens or keypad buttons can be integrated to ensure easy assembly, a close-fit and the closest proximity in the case of buttons.“For the electronics designer, FPC tails can be customised in length and pin-out to best-fit your circuit lay-out,” added Dry. “Often components can be added to the FPC to minimise connections to the driving circuit and power supply. Touch screen interfaces can be customised to mate the desired port and routed separately or integrated into the display interface as desired.”

For the TFT display itself, the LED backlight parameters can often be changed – brighter LEDs for an outdoor application or lower powered ones for battery powered equipment.Touch screens are very popular with resistive or projected capacitive (PCAP) being the most common offerings.

The front-glass of the PCAP touch screen can easily be tailored to become a feature of the front panel aesthetics, with reverse printing, rounded corners and a choice of thickness and glass material-type available.

Resistive touch screens can be customised with reverse printed graphical overlays, tails can be extended and different thicknesses of glass chosen.PCB assemblies with keypad buttons and indicator LEDs can be added, as well as silicone rubber keymats to fit around the display to complete the front-panel assembly.

Kevin Dry added: “TFT display customisation really can be a cost effective way to simplify equipment front-panel assembly, improve aesthetics or just cost optimise a forthcoming design.”

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