Eazeye is a naturally backlit computer monitor that doesn’t use an artificial LED backlight like most traditional LCD displays, but instead is lit entirely by the ambient light from the environment it sits in.
The approach is designed to not only reduce eye strain but also allow it to work in brighter environments such as outdoors in direct sunlight, all while supposedly using a tenth of the electricity of a normal display.
17-year old student, Louis Huang, has spent the last year developing this new way to view LCD displays that takes advantage of the available ambient light of the room and use it as a natural backlight screen. According to Huang, the monitor has a built-in light bar that can be turned on in order to make the display usable in dark environments.
The monitor was initially designed to address the issues with traditional LCD screens that rely on artificial backlighting that can cause eye strain to users over long periods of time, as well as reducing the high-energy consumption of these displays. Huang says the 24-inch, 75hrz, 1080p monitor will greatly reduce the eye strain experienced by users thanks to it’s environmentally conscious design.
How Does The Eazeye Work?
The Eazeye monitor is designed for people who have to spend long spans of time in front of a screen. Since most LCD displays rely on artificial backlighting, the Eazeye display leverages ambient light instead of artificial light for its backlighting purposes.
The argument is that this effectively makes the displays work exactly the same as a conventional LCD screen while significantly reducing the strain while still producing colors and light intensity that blend with the surrounding environment since the main light source is not directly near the viewer’s eyes.
“By relocating the circuit boards to the bottom of the monitor, Eazeye could keep the backlight side of its LCD display unobstructed, facilitating the unobstructed transmission of ambient light,” Huang says.
“To display images, the brightness of the light source behind the LCD must exceed that of the viewing side. Therefore, Eazeye has developed a hinged reflector panel that redirects overhead lighting and acts as a backlight.”
Huang adds that the angle-adjustable design of this panel allows for usage with either overhead lighting or lighting from directly behind.
“If the ambient light is unavailable, a built-in LED bar with a light guide plate from the back can function as a traditional backlight.”
It isn’t clear how this design will handle screen uniformity from both a color and brightness perspective, since that will be entirely reliant on the quality of ambient light.
The Promise of Low Power and Low Cost
As mentioned, the Eazeye monitor uses only five watts of power to run; far less than any other display on the market. Additionally, since the Eazeye display relies on ambient light, when used in brighter or outdoor environments, the screen will provide a much cleaner and more vibrant image than standard LCD monitors.
The 24 inch 1080p Eazeye monitor is expected to sell for between $500 to $700, launching through an Indiegogo campaign later this year. Of note, this isn’t just an idea — Huang says he has working final products. Whether or not they perform as advertised is a separate issue, but the design is clearly moving through the prototyping phase already.
Image credits: Eazeye