The product presentations at CES 2023 already give us a hint: the biggest innovations for laptops will take place in the field of display technology this year. There are improvements in several categories - not only are the displays getting bigger (without necessarily increasing the dimensions of the corresponding notebook), but the display technology is also getting better, there are more and more laptops with high-quality OLED and mini-LED displays and ever higher refresh rates (up to 250 Hz). There are also special technological innovations from individual manufacturers like the glasses-free 3D display from Asus and Razer&s Dual Mode Mini LED.
And the display quality - especially of the top models - is also steadily increasing. Thus, more and more of the displays used by these models cover the professional DCI-P3 color space almost 100%, have a Delta E color accuracy of less than 2, and are pre-calibrated at the factory - and sometimes even, like the MSI Creator 17, the color representation is also Calman-verified and/or Pantone validated.
The maximum brightness also keeps increasing - several of the new launches reach up to 1,000 nits. The new MacBook Pro even has a peak brightness of 1,600 nits and 10,000 mini-LED zones. Also pleasing for creatives is the increasing offer of matte displays, which reduce disturbing light reflections of the working environment, and the increasing support of HDR via the various DisplayHDR standards (400 but more often 600 or even 1,000) or even the qualitatively superior Dolby Vision.
MSI Creator 16
Mini-LED / OLED
. It can also be observed that more and more displays use mini-LED or even OLED, which means that the backlighting is done by means of many different zones or even every single pixel can be addressed individually - which is good for the contrast and the display of true black. The entry of OLED technology, once reserved for the absolute premium segment, into more and more notebooks is also favored by their decreasing prices.
Both technologies have their specific advantages and disadvantages: Mini-LED displays don&t have quite as much contrast as OLEDs, but they have a higher maximum brightness and there is no risk of burn-in. So, it is good when users have the choice between the two technologies, both of which are clearly superior to conventional IPS panels.
Razer Blade 16
. While 17" displays were the maximum size of notebook displays for a long time, a new size class seems to be emerging now: more and more manufacturers now offer 18" notebooks as top models, for example Razer with the Blade 18 or Acer with the Predator Helios 18. Fortunately, larger displays don&t mean that the size of the notebook increases - due to an improvement in the screen-to-body ratio, i.e. the ratio of the size of the screen to the case by narrowing the edge of the screen, new 18" notebooks are partly no larger than old 17" models and new 16" laptops correspond to the size of old 15 inchers. More and more displays also use the 16:10 format corresponding to the golden ratio with a QHD+ resolution of 2,560 x 1,600 pixels.
Asus ProArt Studiobook 16 3D OLED
. Just as with desktop monitors, maximum refresh rates are also growing for notebook displays, especially for the smooth display of games. Thanks to technical improvements, high refresh rates are now possible along with higher resolutions, and new records are being set for mobile displays, such as displaying QHD+ (2,560 x 1,600) at 240 Hz at Asus ROG Zephyrus G16 or even 250 Hz at Acer Predator Helios 16/18.
2D/3D and Dual-Mode Displays
Asus offers a special feature with its Spatial Vision technology in ProArt Studiobook 16 3D OLED and Vivobook Pro 16X 3D OLED, which combine special displays with variable lenticular lenses together with real-time eye tracking to not only display 3D without glasses, but also use the full resolution of the display in 2D mode, which was previously not possible with lenticular 3D displays.
Asus Vivobook Pro 16X 3D OLED
Razer offers another innovative technology in the Blade 16: a so-called dual-mode mini-LED display, which is able to switch between a Creator mode with a native UHD+ resolution with a refresh rate of 120 Hz and one in Gamer mode with a native FHD+ resolution with a high refresh rate of 240 Hz, depending on the desired application.
These technical innovations are usually first introduced by the manufacturers in the latest gaming or creator high-end models, but experience shows that they are also used in the cheaper models a bit later - so we can look forward to a steady improvement.