A Guide to LED Display Connection

While LED displays are designed for easy setup, the technology behind them can be quite a learning curve for some people, especially those who aren’t tech-savvy. However, understanding what happens behind the scenes is crucial in owning, maintaining, and investing in LED displays. It may not be rocket science, but LED display connection can be a complex topic, from wiring diagrams to computing the power supply load.

In this blog, we’ve uncomplicated the terms and made the topic easier to digest. You’ll still see diagrams, but we’ve explained how they work and what purpose each component serves, so read on.

Basics of A LED Display Connection

LED Display Connection starts with the computer and uses a DVI or HDMI cable to connect the computer and the controller (including video processor, synchronous and asynchronous sending box, and sending card). In addition, a USD cable must be used to connect the computer and the sending device. it is used for system debugging, sending parameters;
Secondly, use network cables or fiber cables to connect the controller and LED display;
Use the 3-core 2.5 square cable again to connect to the power distribution cabinet to power the LED display body.
After completing the connection of the above hardware, the LED display can work normally.

How LED Displays Are Connected

To comprehend how an LED display is connected, one must first grasp its components. We won’t go into detail about each component, but we’ll cover all the basics you need to know.

In this LED display connection diagram, you’ll see the computer, camera, DVD, or another input device as the starting point. From the signal input device, data is transmitted to the video processor via HDMI/DVI/DP. The video processor sends the signal to the sending card, which then transmits it to the display.

A 110v or 220v power is supplied by the power transmission line to the distribution box, which then sends it to the power supply. The power supply converts this power to  DC5V voltage which the LED module can use to turn on.

In the following section, we’ll discuss the basics of each component of an LED connection. 

Video Processor Connection

The video processor connection is divided into two segments: input and output. The input segment is the signal source of the image. The source can be an HDMI, VGA, DVI, USB, and more. Meanwhile, the output segment uses the DVI or VGA port.

An Ethernet cable connects the LED display to the controller, though a video processor can occasionally be added.

Network Cable Connection

The LED display receiver is connected to the sending box output port via a series of network cables. There is a cascade connection between the first and second receiving cards. The second receiving card is then connected to the third receiving card. Cascading the receiving card is necessary for unified control.

Receiving cards are typically installed inside the LED cabinet. The network cables connecting each receiving card can be treated as the network connection between display cabinets. The network port’s capacity dictates how many network cables an LED display would need. A network port can typically support 650,000 pixels.

Take a 2K resolution for instance. A 2K LED display has about 2,211,840 pixels (2,048 x 1,080). It will require a minimum of 4 network ports (2,211,840 / 650,000 = 3.40) to support the LED display.

Flat Cable Connection

The flat cable is responsible for transmitting the signal from the receiving cards to each LED module. Four types of cable outputs are available:

  • Normal: The LED modules in the first column are arranged in a cascade, and the longer wires connect the remaining modules to the receiving board
  • Symmetrical: The receiving card is connected to two columns of LED modules, while the others are cascaded.
  • Triple Strip: Three columns of LED display modules are connected to the receiver.
  • Quadruple Strip: The receiving card is connected to four columns of LED modules.

AC Cable Connection

The AC cable connection is responsible for powering the LED display. The main AC cable (3×2.5mm2) from the power distribution box is connected to the AC terminal block inside the cabinet. The cable from the terminal block is then connected to the AC input of the power supply.

To connect the AC cable to the power supply, connect the brown wire to the “L” terminal, the blue wire to the “N” terminal, and the yellow-green wire to the “G” terminal.

The load capacity of the main AC cable is sensitive to environmental factors such as temperature. A 220V input voltage can support up to 3,600W under normal conditions. This translates to about 12 units of 300W power supply or 18 units of 200W power supply. Meanwhile, a 110V cable can support up to 1,800W, translating to about 6 units of 300W power supply or 9 units of 200W power supply.

DC5v Wire Connection

A module’s maximum white balance affects how many modules a power supply can support. For rental LED displays, the maximum load is 85%; for fixed LED screens, the maximum load is 80%.

In wiring a power supply, the red wire should be connected to the “+” pole and the black wire to “-” pole. Each module uses VH4 connectors, which feature four 0.75 mm2 wires—two red and two black—for a more stable connection.

Types of LED Display Board Connection

Various types of connections are used in LED displays, each with advantages and disadvantages. Let’s take a look at three of the most common types used in LED screens:

Serial Connection

 A serial connection involves a chainlike structure where one module receives the signal from the controller and passes it to the next module. This type of connection uses fewer pins on the controller, making it suitable for microcontrollers with limited pins. It also allows the controller to be further away from the LED display. However, serial connections are notoriously slow, since the data transfer has to pass through each module before reaching the destination.

Parallel Connection

A parallel connection is the simplest way to connect LED displays. This setup involves the entire LED row connected to one pin and the entire column connected to another. Each LED lights up according to the signal received by their corresponding pins from the controller.

This type of connection can support many LEDs and is relatively easy to implement. However, it requires multiple pins on the controller, which is not suitable for microcontrollers with limited pins.

Multiplex or Hybrid Connection

A multiplex or a hybrid connection takes the best of serial and parallel connections. This type of setup involves arranging the LEDs into rows and columns with the controller sending signals to each row and column in an alternating manner. For instance, the controller sends a signal to the first row and then sends the same to the first column. The next sequence is sent to the first row and then to the second column. This is repeated rapidly, making it seem like the LEDs are lit simultaneously.

This type of connection can support a large number of LEDs. However, it requires timing and coordination between the controllers and the display to avoid flickering or image ghosting.

Final Thoughts

Looking at LED displays from the front, you won’t realize just how complicated the goings-on are behind the scenes. Seeing all the wires at the back of the LED cabinets can be intimidating, but once you familiarize yourself with LED display connections, you’ll understand why a specific wire is connected to a specific port. A robust LED display is built by an equally robust network of cables. Without the proper connections, LED screens won’t be able to display visually-stunning content.

Scroll to Top