LCD video wall displays are increasingly becoming the "go-to" tool for delivering information in captivating and engaging visual appeal.
The "wow factor" of a properly executed, larger-than-life video wall display is so compelling a communication tool that, by 2017, total digital signage revenue is expected to amount to $17.1 billion across a wide range of marketing verticals.
Such eye-popping figures suggest that value-added resellers (VARs) in the pro AV space will be "expected" to be both knowledgeable and precise when offering video wall solutions to prospective clients.
Today's offering of LCD displays is as varied as that of automobile models?each with their own specifications and appeal to customers. As end users demand more and more resolution, LCD display manufacturers are heeding the call.
Many brands offer full HD digital displays with 4K (3840 x 2160) resolution and almost non-existent bezels?some are even testing 8K resolution with early adopters.
No matter what LCD displays VARs choose for their customers, specificity, price, and end use will be the primary considerations. With that in mind, here are a few brands, along with highlights, for VARs to consider when selecting a digital LCD video wall solution for customers.
LG is touting the new LG 55VH7B video wall display panel as having the industry's narrowest bezel-to-bezel size at less than 2mm.
LG claims its IPS panels are virtually seamless, while delivering truer colors and a wider viewing angle (120 degrees or above) than other displays.
Available in both 49" and 55" sizes with 700-nit brightness and 24/7 operation, the 55VH7B was chosen "Best in Class" at InfoComm 2015.
It’s connectivity and onboard video codec support are considered among the most versatile in the pro AV space.
LG states that pricing and detailed technical specifications will be forthcoming.
Not to be outdone, Samsung's OHD line of LCD displays in sizes from 46" to 55" touts its new SMART Signage Platform (SSP), which promises customized solutions and remote content management.
High brightness; a 178-degree viewing angle; a wide operating temperature range; and rugged, outdoor-capable engineering puts this line of LCDs in the "top pick" category of video wall displays.
NEC offers high-quality LCD displays that are perfect for many digital signage verticals, especially restaurants, airports, retail, and healthcare.
In particular, the NEC P402 40" professional-grade LCD display boasts full HD resolution (1920 x 1080) and rugged, industrial-strength design for demanding applications.
The enhanced Digital Signage Technology Suite (DSTS) and impressive range of pro AV inputs deliver high-quality images for both indoor and outdoor applications.
And at an MSRP of US$782, the P402 line of LCD displays won't break the bank when configured as part of a video wall solution.
The NEC X Series commercial-grade displays available in 43" promise high-contrast images, enhanced video wall capabilities, including their proprietary TileMatrix function, 1920 x 480 native resolution and an ambient light sensor that provides consistent brightness in any lighting condition.
Additional features like enhanced PIP, POP, and side-by-side modes, along with a generous supply of digital inputs, position the X series to be a true player in the increasingly crowded video wall market.
Barco, once an industry leader in the prehistoric age of 3-gun analog video projectors, is holding its own in today's LCD video display market with the super-narrow NSL Series 46" tiled LCD display.
Although the NSL Series was designed for 24/7 use in control rooms, exceptionally high brightness levels allow these video walls to be used in any lighting condition.
Right and bottom bezels are 1.9mm thick. The wide range of video inputs includes:
- VGA---Separate sync DSUB-15P in/out
- DVI---Single-link DVI-D in/out with HDCP
- HDMI---HDMI Type A with HDCP (out via DVI)
- S-video---Mini-DIN S-terminal in/out
- Component video---3x BNC in/out
Depending on the application, VARs should look LCD displays with super-narrow bezels, scratch-resistant glass, front-facing maintenance access panels.
Lightweight displays that are energy efficient and offer 24/7 technical support will make set up and operation more reliable.
As video wall manufacturers continue to improve the quality and versatility of LCD displays, VARs will have access to a much greater selection of solution-specific products to offer their customers.