Backlit Display System Types

Written October 17, 2019

Fluorescent lamp

Light boxes for backlit displays are numerous, and fall into three major categories of lighting. The dominant type of lighting is with fluorescent lamps. Since these come in all sizes and wattages, there are limitless configurations for these display boxes. The issue with fluorescents is the heat generated and the need to constantly replace failing lamps in the light cabinet.

LED Lamps

LED powered light boxes are taking over traditional form traditional fluorescents for many reasons. LED lamps use a fraction of the energy that the former system uses, and last at least 10x longer in use. This means less time changing light bulbs and lower cost to run. They are however more expensive, but they will pay for themselves in time and energy savings. There are two types of LED boxes, edge lit and backlit.

The edge lit boxes use the LED lamps spaced closely along the edge of a finely routed piece of acrylic, inside of a reflector. The routing pattern acts as a light guide, and the edge of the routed groove distributes light along its path. They surface can also be sandblasted to pick up the edge light. The back of the acrylic has a reflective coating or material to enhance the light output to the front face of the plastic. The sizes for edge lit can go quite large, 7x10’ is on the market, and custom sizes are available.

LED Backlit Displays

LED display boxes that use an array of LED lamps on the back surface are plentiful in the market. They can be produced in any and every size and configuration imaginable. They also have the advantage of being able to use different LED lamps when being built to accommodate any desired light output. Display boxes for textile are usually LED with side lighting so that the light is not seen coming through the weave of the material from the straight on viewing condition. The method for retaining textile onto the box is with the use of a stitched on silicone edging material that is tucked into the boxes channel guide.