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How a screen is manufactured
How a screen is manufactured & assembled


By Rasmus Larsen (@flatpanels)
30 Jun 2010

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In this article FlatpanelsHD is taking a look at how a screen is manufactured and assembled using both manual and robotic processes. We have been given a look into how Japanese monitor manufacturer Eizo is manufacturing monitors and how they are calibrated afterwards.

A thanks to Eizo Nanao Corp. for giving us insight into the production line and for supplying the images in this article.

How to manufacture a flat screen

Together with monitor manufacturer Eizo FlatpanelsHD has taken a look into the manufacturing plant where a monitor is manufactured, assembled and calibrated. Eizo is still keeping everything in house to be able to control the assembly process as well as the calibration.

Even though many processes are 100 % automated with the help of robots some manual tasks has to be performed. The pictures also guide you through the process.

Assembly

The assembly process begins with the LCD panel. LCD panels arrive from suppliers wrapped in plastic. Once ready for assembly, they are removed from their bags and placed face up.

Eizo manufacturing
Eizo monitor manufacturing


A plastic cover that protects the screen surface is removed and the LCD panel is then turned face down.

Eizo manufacturing
Eizo monitor manufacturing


An inverter PCB (printed circuit board) is placed on the back of the LCD panel and affixed with an electric drill.

Eizo manufacturing
Eizo monitor manufacturing


A protective metal frame is placed over the LCD panel.

Eizo manufacturing
Eizo monitor manufacturing


The next worker prepares the front bezel and adds cushioning material before placing the LCD panel inside.

Eizo manufacturing
Eizo monitor manufacturing


Once the LCD panel is encased inside the bezel, the power PCB and main PCB, manufactured by Eizo at a separate factory, are added.

Eizo manufacturing
Eizo monitor manufacturing


The next part of the assembly process is automated screw insertion. Here, each model is recognized by its RFID (radio frequency identification) tag. A CCD (charge coupled device) camera confirms the proper location for screw insertion and then a robotic arm inserts the screws. The screen superimposed in the video shows the movement of the CCD camera and robotic arm.


Flexible flat cables that connect the power board and the main controller are attached.

Eizo manufacturing
Eizo monitor manufacturing


A shielding plate is placed over monitor and then affixed with an electric drill.

Eizo manufacturing
Eizo monitor manufacturing


The back cover is attached. This completes the assembly of the base unit.

Eizo manufacturing
Eizo monitor manufacturing


The final stage in the assembly process is the attachment of the stand.

Eizo manufacturing
Eizo monitor manufacturing


Once assembly is complete, each monitor undergoes an initial screen check inside of an image inspection apparatus. Inside black curtains, a CCD camera automatically determines if the monitor is displaying an image correctly.

Eizo manufacturing
Eizo monitor manufacturing


Aging

After the initial screen check, monitors are automatically moved down the production line where they go through an"aging" process. Aging serves three purposes.

  • To check that the LCD module does not exhibit image retention when left on for a short period of time.
  • To ensure the circuit boards are operating properly.
  • To stabilize brightness before adjusting the monitor’s white balance in the next step of the production process.

    Eizo manufacturing
    Eizo monitor manufacturing


    The image quality has not been tested and adjusted yet so discrepancies in brightness and color display between monitors are noticeable.

    Adjustment

    In this automated process, a camera inside a glass compartment examines then adjusts the color temperature, gamma, white balance, and brightness of each monitor.


    Most monitors continue on to the next phase of testing, but in the event that a monitor does not pass, then it is removed from the line and examined.

    White Balance and DUE Adjustment

    EIZO’s SX series of FlexScan monitors for graphic and web design, CAD/CAM work, and digital photography, undergo white balance and DUE (digital uniformity equalizer) adjustment. Two monitors at a time are automatically moved into a dark room. The first phase of the testing is preliminary white balance testing to stabilize the brightness.

    Eizo manufacturing
    Eizo monitor manufacturing


    Next, DUE adjustment minimizes the discrepancies in brightness between the center and the perimeter of the screen that are characteristic of all LCD panels. After the DUE adjustment is completed, the white balance is adjusted so that neutral colors will be rendered correctly. White balance and DUE adjustment are performed in a dark room, but the process and the results are shown on monitors outside the dark room.

    Testing

    Each monitor is individually inspected by the human eye. Although automated testing by a machine is adequate for low grayscale tones, the human eye is still the best tool for judging whether midtones and hues are displayed properly. If the monitor has built-in speakers then the worker checks the audio with earphones and taps the frame with a padded stick to ensure it can withstand light shocks.

    Eizo manufacturing
    Eizo monitor manufacturing


    After the monitor clears all tests, the serial number is scanned, the RFID tag is removed from the palette, and the product is ready for packaging.

    Eizo manufacturing
    Eizo monitor manufacturing


    Monitors continue down the conveyer belt where they will be transported to another floor for packaging.

    Eizo manufacturing
    Eizo monitor manufacturing


    Packaging

    Monitors are delicately hand-packed prior to shipping in recyclable cardboard boxes.


    After packaging is complete, the monitors are loaded onto a truck where they will begin their journey to the customer.

    Eizo manufacturing
    Eizo monitor manufacturing


    Finally Eizo is performing some drop testing to ensure that the product can survive if they are accidently dropped. Check out these videos:
    Eizo Drop Testing.

    A thanks to Eizo Nanao Corp. for giving us insight into the production line and for supplying the images in this article.




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