Difference of Edge-Lit and Backlit Light Boxes

Posted on Monday, February 8, 2016

Advertising has been around for a long time. Back in the day, companies used posters to promote an event, a product, or a service. Fast forward to 2016 and you’ll see plenty of advertising tools aside from posters. Through technology, we are now experiencing new marketing methods as well as improved traditional advertising tools. One example is digital billboard; through innovation, the traditional billboard was improved and now, LED billboard is used for advertising in the Philippines.

The application of LED is not limited to billboards. These days, LED is also used for illuminating light boxes. Although this is not as famous an advertising material as LED billboards are, it has its own advantages. If you are going to be using posters in your advertising campaign, an LED light box can be beneficial for you because it can turn a plain poster into an attention-grabbing display. Before you skip to the store to buy one, there are things you should know. One of this is the difference between edge-lit and backlit light boxes.

edge lit light boxes
Image courtesy of Vivacityled

What’s an Edge-Lit Light Box?

An LED light box use light-emitting diodes instead of fluorescent for illumination. The difference between the two types of light boxes – edge-lit and backlit – can be found in the structure of the light box itself. As its name suggests, an edge-lit light box has light-emitting diodes on the sides of its frame, which shines its light sideways. This indirectly lights the poster on the box.

This has its advantages; for one, since the light bulbs are only located on the sides, it won’t severely affect your monthly electric bill. Despite this, you have to watch out because this type of light box can sometimes lead to a bit of glowing on the sides of the display. One way to avoid this is by using diffusion paper. Although this doesn’t always hide the slight glow, it can reduce it.

You have to mind the size of the edge-lit light box that you will purchase because it will determine the diffusion of light on your poster. Remember that the bulbs in an edge-lit light box are located on the sides of the box only. This means that the larger your light box is, the farther the LED bulbs are from the center of the box. It might lead to poor dissemination of light in the middle part of the light box, making it look dimmer.


What’s a Backlit Light Box?

While an edge-lit light box has LED bulbs situated on the side, a backlit light box has LED bulbs across the box’s whole back panel. In addition, instead of beaming light sideways, the LED on this type of light box faces forward.

In terms of energy consumption, backlit might be more expensive compared to its counterpart. Since it uses several more bulbs compared to edge-lit light boxes, it makes a bigger impact on your electric bill. Despite this, a backlit LED light box is still more energy efficient compared to fluorescent light boxes.

Since a backlit light box has bulbs across its whole panel, it is better when it comes to illuminating posters. Its light distribution is also better which means that you won’t have to worry about dim spots at the center of the light box. Although its design might be bulkier compared to an edge-lit light box, you’ll find that it is easier to change the bulbs of a backlit light box. In comparison, the edge-lit light boxes in the market normally won’t allow bulb replacements. This means that you’ll have to totally replace the whole light box once the lights are obsolete.

Using a light box to illuminate you poster is one of the best ways to make your ad more appealing to the public. It will surely make your display stand out among the rest! Despite this, don’t just rush to the store without knowing the difference between an edge-lit light box and a backlit light box. Both have its advantages and disadvantages so make sure to choose wisely.

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