[answered, thanks] Common cathode or anode... does it matter?

With 7-segment displays, is there any reason to chose either common cathode or anode over the other?

Probably not, but I got the impression that there was better information on common cathode 4x7 with max7221 and LED Control.

The choice is usually determined by the driver circuit and whether the LED on/off switches are on the high side (+ve) or low side (-ve). Due to physics transistors on the low side tend to have lower losses hence a common anode display is used in that case.

bodmer: Due to physics transistors on the low side tend to have lower losses hence a common anode display is used in that case.

But the same argument dictates common cathode if multiplexed.

And of course, the organisation of the MAX7219 favours common cathode as one byte register per digit and by providing a decoder for common cathode displays if you are satisfied with digits 1 to 9 and "HELP- ".

Paul__B:
But the same argument dictates common cathode if multiplexed.

Yes, this is because switches are needed on the high side and low side, and it is best if the low side transistor carries the current from more segments viz use common cathode. It is also nice to have the current limiter (eg resistor etc) on the high side since that makes the circuit more robust to accidental shorts of the LED terminals to ground.

If you are driving the LEDs direct with an Arduino then common anode is best as the output transistors dissipate less. Then the topside switch which carries all 8 segment currents can be a discrete transistor.

So it is swings and roundabouts. Decide how you will drive them and choose the LED common side accordingly.