The transmissive liquid crystal cell does not have reflective properties. Utilizing a backlight
behind the display creates the image that is displayed on the screen, and the transmissive liquid
crystal cell acts as a light valve to either allow the light to pass through the display or to block
the light. This technology is used when there are few ambient light sources available.
The reflective liquid crystal device has a reflector located on the rear of the cell, which reflects
ambient light that is passed through the cell back to the user. Best used in direct sunlight or a
well-lit office, this technology features the lowest power consumption, as there is no backlight.
Utilizing a transflector, which is a reflector that will still allow some light to pass through,
transflective LCD displays are able to achieve both reflective and transmissive properties. This
capability enables acceptable transmissive performance with a backlight in low-light conditions,
and allows the utilization of a reflective lower-power mode in adequate ambient light conditions
while maintaining good performance in direct sunlight. The transflective viewing mode is the
most common monochrome LCD viewing mode.
The most common configuration for monochrome displays, a darker pixel on a lighter
background creates a positive image,. In a non-powered state, the display will retain the lighter
The most common configuration for color displays, a lighter pixel on a darker background
creates a negative image,. In a non-powered state, the display will retain the darker background