Resolution Enhancement by Vibrating Displays

Floraine Berthouzoz, Raanan Fattal


We present a method that makes use of the retinal integration time in the human visual system for increasing the resolution of displays. Given an input image with a resolution higher than the display resolution, we compute several images that match the display’s native resolution. We then render these low-resolution images in a sequence that repeats itself on a high refresh-rate display. The period of the sequence falls below the retinal integration time and therefore the eye integrates the images temporally and perceives them as one image. In order to achieve resolution enhancement we apply small-amplitude vibrations to the display panel and synchronize them with the screen refresh cycles. We derive the perceived image model and use it to compute the low-resolution images that are optimized to enhance the apparent resolution of the perceived image. This approach achieves resolution enhancement without having to move the displayed content across the screen and hence offers a more practical solution than existing approaches. Moreover, we use our model to establish limitations on the amount of resolution enhancement achievable by such display systems. In this analysis we draw a formal connection between our display and super-resolution techniques and find that both methods share the same limitation, yet this limitation stems from different sources. Finally, we describe in detail a simple physical realization of our display system and demonstrate its ability to match most of the spectrum displayable on a screen with twice the resolution.

Given a high resolution input image (a), our method generates four low-resolution images (b). These four images are integrated by the observer’s eye when viewed on our vibrating display and lead to a perceived image of higher resolution (c). The perceived image is an actual photograph taken of the display. Image credits: Eddy Van Leuven.

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Resolution Enhancement by Vibrating Displays
ACM Transactions on Graphics (Volume 31, Issue 2, April 2012) 15:1-15:14.