What Are Flat Screen Monitors Made Of?

By Tony Smith

A flat screen monitor.
i tropical landscape on flat screen tv image by javarman from Fotolia.com

Because of their lighter size, viewing flexibility and crisper imaging, flat screen monitors have almost completely replaced the bulky traditional CRT (Cathode Ray Tube) monitors of the past. Although there are different types of flat screen televisions, almost all flat screen monitors are made the same.


Flat screen monitors are based on the LCD (Liquid Crystal Display) technology used for laptop screens, although the technology has evolved considerably over the years and continues to improve.

How it Works

A flat screen monitor, like all LCD displays, is made primarily of two pieces of glass with liquid crystal material between them. Varying electrical current is applied to the liquid crystal material to rearrange the pixels to display the appropriate images on your monitor.


Because the glass used in LCD monitors isn't as shiny as the glass used in windows, many people mistake it for plastic. It's actually a very thin, compressed form of glass optimized for easier viewing.


Flat screen monitors are most often encased in plastic, but they can also be encased in metal such as Apple's titanium series of Powerbooks were.

Glossy Flat Screens

In 2007, Apple introduced a new type of glossy flat screens that look more like traditional glass. Other computer and monitor manufacturers such as Hewlett-Packard were quick to pick up on the trend. The newer glossy type of flat screen monitors have met with mixed reviews.