In an earlier blog this year, I reviewed NEC’s recent announcement to incorporate the popular Raspberry Pi (RPi) computer with selected new V-Series and P-Series panels by mid-2017. The addition of RPi continues NEC’s open platform philosophy utilizing OPS slots that pr read more
Not being a software developer, you can imagine my confusion when NEC Display Solutions of America announced its upcoming line of commercial displays with the ability to insert a Raspberry Pi Compute Module. “Raspberry Pi?” I said. “Isn’t that some sort of dessert?” R read more
At Almo Pro AV we just wrapped up our 2016 E-4 AV Tour with stops in Boston and then Dallas. Like our previous E-4s, these events offered our customers, large end-users and consultants multiple CTS-certified lectures (with RU Credits!), hands-on experience rooms and an impressive exhibit floor populated with over 50 manufacturer partners displaying the latest in technology.
Due to space constraints and other outside factors, exhibit halls in general often restrict what manufacturers showcase to individual components and not an entire working solution. Attendees then must visualize the solution, usually by associating it with a recent or current application need. But what if they could see an entire solution, made up of components from multiple manufacturers in a single exhibit? This is a concept I’ve been at work on for the past few E-4 events, and the reception and feedback I’ve received is motivating.
Representatives from well-regarded display and projector manufacturer NEC have worked with me on this concept from the beginning. Our goal is to display NEC’s superior commercial panel designs and demonstrate their functionality in a working model, such as a video wall or unique projector application. To accomplish this we started with a video wall configuration and called on another partner, Peerless-AV to supply their specialized video wall cart. The cart is an actual Peerless-AV sku providing video wall mounting with mobility. Perfect for our exhibit hall floor. Now we can easily demonstrate the features of this video wall solution and mount combination to show attendees.
In Dallas we took the partial solution even further. TVOne joined our configuration to display their low-cost and feature-rich 4k video processing unit that utilizes NEC’s Tile Matrix feature. We then insured electrical noise-free power by employing a Tripp-Lite double-conversion UPS. The end result was a working, fully mobile 4k video wall solution.
Next, we wanted to demonstrate a single-panel application with a 65″ UHD Panel, mounted in portrait orientation. Once again we called on Peerless-AV to provide a video cart capable of portrait orientation, enabling us to demonstrate the panel’s ability to change screen orientation. One dealer group actually came by the booth that day ans offered to purchase the solution right then and there and take it back to their office!
Also popular these days are indoor kiosks, and Almo and NEC were able to bring such a solution to our E4 attendees as well. This time we created a kiosk solution featuring a 46″ NEC panel displaying content from a BrightSign media player, all secured and ventilated within the Peerless-AV kiosk and once again powered by Tripp-Lite.
Almo is already hard at work with our partners for our March E-4 AV Tour stop in the Windy City, Chicago, IL. Our solutions exhibits will no doubt continue to evolve and grow. Perhaps we’ll employ a unique NEC SSL laser projector based digital signage application with portrait orientation using content provided by Almo’s Content Creation Services. Rest assured, we’ll come up with something – and our attendees will be able to see a true solution through the forest of products on the exhibit floor.
So when did your end user last consider refreshing an older video wall? What a great question. I bet most end users consider replacing or reconfiguring video walls a prohibitive exercise of expense for soft dollar returns. In other words, it’s about metrics related to advertising attention or informational effectiveness. But soft dollars are challenging to measure and hard for integrators to include in project proposals designed to convince end users.
But today there’s more! When advances in large display panel technology, mount designs, content software, signal distribution, and control are combined with lower purchase, implementation, and operational costs, a “perfect storm” of hard cost justification opportunity begins to form. Add in the possibility that the end user’s current video wall may be fully depreciated as a capital expense, and BINGO! ….. dealers and integrators have a great pitch to sell.
In the coming month, Almo ProAV will be reviewing the opportunities with Video Wall Refresh. In the meantime, here are some quick items to consider:
- Energy Savings: Today’s panels are much more efficient in operation, substantially reducing energy costs. Those savings alone can nearly justify a whole project.
- Advanced Design and Features: One example is ambient light sensors that provide auto dimming. Another example is High Brightness (high nit) panels for high ambient light environments
- Lower Install Costs: Today’s mount designs reduce install time. Easy to use color calibration tools reduce install time as well
- Lower Large Format Display Costs: Perhaps consider a single 90”+ display rather than a 2×2 wall, for example
Look for discussion guide to Video Wall Refresh in the coming months.
Well, to be honest, chasm might be overstating it just a bit. The now arriving laser engine projectors have moved into one of the wheelhouses of the Pro A/V marketplace, installed or large venue. Crossing the 6000-lumen output mark has done the trick. Everyone is talking, so I will also, about the 20,000 hours of “Lamp Life” with its major reduction in cost of expendables…lamps. If you run one of the new laser engine projectors eight hours a day, seven days a week it would produce a picture for almost seven years! Very few actually do that, so what we’re really close to is a projector, whose source of light will last its functional lifetime. Not bad! But there is another advantage of the lasers that also worth a word or two. The more typical two (2) lamp, 7000-lumen install projector uses over 1000 watts of electricity to produce its brightest picture, while the laser engine projector less than 600. I live in the Pacific Northwest where a little over 7 cents will buy a commercial user a kilowatt-hour. If your customer is doing business in a Middle Atlantic State, a kilowatt-hour can run as high as 16 cents. That’s something to talk about with your customers.
So to recap… laser projectors have, to say the least, almost eliminated expendables cost and are cheaper to run, two things your customers will want to hear. So tell them! But wait there is more, given the advancements in projection technology four (4) of NEC’s new NP-PX602UL’s using its integrated TileMatrix capabilities can produce an incredibly large 4k by 2k seamless image using no additional hardware, its just not something that direct view devices are capable of. The new laser projectors from NEC are available in UXGA resolution NP-PX602UL and the WXGA resolution NP-PX602WL. They are complemented with complete line of lenses to fit your customers’ needs. The NEC PX602 series of projectors has HDBase T onboard to make video, audio and control signals a single cable solution. If you want to know more click the links or better yet give Almo Pro/AV a call.