Product News
Sony’s OLED: Not-So-Bright Future?
The new XEL-1 may take a licking, but one research firm says it doesn't appear to be ticking as long as anticipated.
Sony XEL-1
Sony says the XEL-1 OLED can reproduce very deep blacks, with a contrast ratio of 1,000,000:1.
May 08, 2008 by Rachel Cericola

You have to take marketing claims with a grain of salt. However, research firm DisplaySearch took Sony’s recent claims to their lab.

The XEL-1 has been drawing rave reviews for its awesome picture, and long-life span. However, DisplaySearch put their claims to the test, and got some interesting results. After running two units for 1,000 hours, they came to the conclusion that the unit would lose half its brightness after 17,000 hours of use—almost half of what Sony claims.

Sony says that its 3mm-thin, 11-inch unit uses Organic Light Emitting Diode (OLED) technology, which boasts a bright, beautiful picture without jacking up the power. After years of testing, the manufacturer says that the unit lasts about 30,000 hours, and they are standing by those claims.

“The results demonstrate that the Sony display is significantly inferior in many ways to the current (OLED) designs,” DisplaySearch’s researchers wrote (via USA Today).

The quality of the image is not being questioned. Would DisplaySearch’s results sway you away from the XEL-1?

The XEL-1 retails for $2,499.99.

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Rachel Cericola - Contributing Writer
Over the past 15 years, Rachel Cericola has covered entertainment, web and technology trends. Check her out at

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