EVF Liquid Crystal Panel Module

World's first color liquid crystal panel module for video cameras

June 1988

EVF Liquid Crystal Panel Module

Liquid crystal panel: Polysilicon TFT active-matrix panel with integrated driver circuits
Display: Full color
Screen size: 14.3 mm x 19.2 mm (0.94 inch)
Pixels: 70,400 (220 high x 320 wide)
Contrast ratio: 100:1
Resolution: 200 TV lines horizontal / 200 TV lines vertical

In August 1988, the EVF Liquid Crystal Panel Module became the world's first commercially produced, ultra-compact, full-color liquid crystal panel module for video camera viewfinders. The product triggered a huge response around the world. Whereas earlier video camera viewfinders were monochrome and used a cathode-ray tube, this viewfinder was the first on the market to display color and use a liquid crystal panel. The panel made it easy to check and discriminate between colors during taping. The use of a liquid crystal panel allowed engineers to design viewfinders that were smaller, lighter, and consumed less power than the traditional cathode-ray tube type. In addition, the polysilicon TFT technology used in the module enabled even greater reductions in viewfinder size and weight, because for the very first time the circuits used to drive the liquid crystal could be fabricated concurrently with the pixels on the glass substrate.

As time passed, color viewfinder panels migrated to smaller sizes and higher pixel densities in line with market trends. They became a core product of Epson's TFT display business, growing market share and driving a higher rate of color panel adoption in the market. The engineering expertise honed during their development would come in very handy in later years, when the company set out to develop liquid crystal panels for projectors.