When you watch TV or play games, it may seem like you're staring at a complete image, but what you're really seeing are bits and pieces of a frame at a time. And of course each frame is itself a static image, presented in rapid fire succession to appear as motion. Basically, it's one big grand illusion on multiple scales. To drive the point home, Gavin Free of The Slow Mo Guys channel on YouTube uploaded an interesting video showing what a display looks like when slowed down.
He used a Phantom Flex and Phantom V2511 to record video at different speeds, from 1,600 frames per second all the way up to a staggering 360,000 fps. When slowed way down, you are able to see each line being drawn, from top to bottom and from left to right. It's pretty trippy.
In addition, he took some super close-up shots to see what's going on at the sub-pixel level. Each pixel is made up of three sub-pixels, those being red, green, and blue, or RGB. By dimming and brightening different sub-pixels, displays are able to create the illusion of different colors.
"So every time on your TV you're looking at a white image, you're looking at tons of blue, green, and red lights. They're just so small they look like white to your eye," Free explains.
You might have already known that, but seeing it up close on a 4K TV is really neat.
The video is about 11 and a half minutes long, and covers different display types (CRT, LCD, and OLED). It's definitely worth checking out when you have a spare moment (unless you're prone to epileptic seizures). Here it is: