"If there is no full-sealed optical engine in 2022, it would be embarrassing to promote the industry landscape of LCD projectors. And now, in 2023, without a full-sealed optical engine, selling LCD projector products becomes impossible."
In the development history of LCD projection, we have witnessed the emergence of fully open optical engines, semi-enclosed optical engines, and the latest full-sealed optical engines. They represent different generations of products and technological advancements. Among them, the full-sealed optical engine has experienced the most rapid growth. So, why did this new technology, which was initially a differentiating product led by a few LCD brands, become the decisive factor for industry experts when choosing products within just a year? This is undoubtedly due to the significant experiential advantages brought by the full-sealed optical engine.
Full-sealed Optical Engine Breakthroughs
Contrary to common perception, a full-sealed optical engine goes beyond simply enclosing the light source, light valve, and lens components of an LCD projector in a box. In fact, the full-sealed optical engine has achieved at least three major breakthroughs:
Firstly, there is a breakthrough in product design. The full-sealed optical engine not only completely seals the light source and optical path but also requires a more compact product design. Almost every optical lens needs to have higher optical resolution, thinner thickness, and smaller diameter. Furthermore, each optical conversion step must be arranged and fixed within a limited enclosed space to meet the requirements of thermal fluid mechanics and imaging.
Secondly, the full-sealed optical engine necessarily transitions from air convection cooling, as seen in fully open or semi-enclosed optical engines, to solid-state conductive heat dissipation technology. Currently, full-sealed optical engines extensively utilize new heat conduction technology (sealed heat-conductive materials that simultaneously achieve the requirements of dust-proofing and high-efficiency heat exchange). This new heat dissipation principle closely resembles the internal heat dissipation structure of our smartphones. It enables efficient heat conduction and excellent temperature control in an enclosed environment. The shift from relying on blowing air and strong airflow to new technology focusing on heat conduction and materials, along with the need for complex thermal source points and heat dissipation channel designs, positions the full-sealed optical engine as a treasure trove of thermal science.
Thirdly, the widespread availability of LCD projectors with full-sealed optical engines relies on the support of manufacturing factories that meet the conditions for full-sealed dust-free operations, including at least cleanrooms at the tens of thousands or even thousands level. This represents a major revolution in the projection system manufacturing and process environment. Without a clean manufacturing environment, dust can easily enter the optical engine during the manufacturing process, significantly diminishing the significance of a full-sealed design.
The aforementioned three points demonstrate that the widespread adoption of LCD projectors with full-sealed optical engines is a comprehensive and systematic industrial progress. It can be said that products with full-sealed technology need to excel in every aspect, from design to materials and assembly.
Full-sealed Optical Engine: Resolving Old Issues and Delivering New Performance
In our daily lives, we often need to clean PC monitors, TV screens, mobile phone screens, and even ceiling lights due to accumulated dust. Dust, especially the kind that is attracted by static electricity, can significantly interfere with the image quality of display devices and the brightness of lighting products.
The same applies to projectors as optical display devices. From the light source to the final projected image, there are at least a dozen components involved, including emission, focusing, uniform illumination, reflection, imaging, and magnification processes. If each lens accumulates a layer of dust, the consequences can be easily imagined. Traditional open optical engine LCD projectors suffer from five major issues:
1. Rapid brightness decay
2. Appearance of black spots and discoloration due to dust,
3. High heat dissipation noise
4. Shortened lifespan due to dust accumulation within the entire device
5. Glare caused by light leakage through heat dissipation gaps.
Sealed Optical Engine: 10 Key Advantages
|Open-type or semi-closed-type optical engine
|New type of full-sealed optical engine
|Traditional electronic workshop
|Cleanroom with at least Class 10,000 cleanliness level
|Optical Engine Design Philosophy
|Low-cost distributed components
|High-quality components, precise assembly, compact design
|Only air convection cooling
|Peripheral air convection, contact-type semiconductor heat dissipation, and heat pipe cooling for the optical engine
|Dust adhesion causes rapid brightness decay
|No dust adhesion on the optical components, no additional brightness decay
|LCD Panel Cleanliness (Black Dots)
|Dust accumulation leads to black dots on the screen
|No occurrence of black dots on the screen
|Lifespan of Core Components such as LCD Panel and Light Source (Yellowing of Image Quality)
|Dust accumulation causes heat accumulation, accelerating aging and yellowing of image quality
|No internal dust accumulation, theoretically achieving multiple-fold increase in lifespan, even comparable to DLP projectors
|Different degrees of light leakage and eye discomfort depending on heat dissipation holes and optical path design
|No light leakage from the body
|Highly dependent on strong convection air cooling, dust accumulation leads to decreased heat dissipation, requiring higher fan airflow, resulting in higher noise throughout the lifespan
|Active heat conduction, minimal convection requirements, unaffected heat dissipation performance of the core optical engine by dust accumulation, resulting in lower noise throughout the lifespan
|Internal cleaning of dust and professional optical maintenance required
|Full-sealed internal optical engine, no additional maintenance required, peripheral maintenance similar to routine maintenance of ordinary electronic devices
|Internal Sensors and Intelligence
|Dust affects the sensitivity of internal sensors, hindering self-regulation of intelligent products
|Consistent environment and operating conditions for internal sensors in the optical engine, ensuring reliable and stable product operation
|Choice of traditional manufacturers and low-cost or counterfeit products
|Choice of emerging brands and mid-to-high-end LCD projectors, the starting point for brand-oriented market development, strong brand camp with sufficient strength and high investment in research and development
A sealed optical engine completely eliminates the pollution caused by dust by adopting a full-sealed structure for the optical path. This not only ensures stable and consistent display performance but also eliminates the need for consumers to incur additional costs for professional internal cleaning. Compared to traditional technologies such as open optical engines and semi-sealed optical engines with dust-proof screens, which still cannot completely prevent dust pollution, the sealed optical engine provides a permanent solution to these significant product pain points.
Furthermore, the improved optical path design and high-quality components required for sealed optical engines often make it easier to achieve high brightness.
Sealed Optical Engine Empowers LCD Projection
2022 witnessed the dominance of LCD projection. The popularity of high-brightness LCD projectors, represented by sealed optical engines, played a crucial role in increasing the market share of LCD technology. In early 2023, with the introduction of new sealed optical engine products with a brightness of 1000 lumens, LCD projection has even challenged and rivaled the market position and user experience of 0.33-inch DLP optical engine products.
Comprehensive advancements in light sources, optical engines, complete devices, and industrial design! Industry experts believe that the technological upgrades of LCD projection are accelerating rapidly, and the position of being the first choice for young people and the king of affordable large screens is becoming prominent. In particular, the anticipated release of a 4K version of sealed optical engines in 2023 is expected to be revolutionary for high-brightness LCD projection. This will undoubtedly bring about disruptive competition to today's dominant DLP 0.47 models in the 4K projection large-screen market.
"Innovation and progress lead to market rewards!" This is the consumer's recognition and reward for the bold and meticulous innovation achieved by LCD projectors.
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