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An Emerging World of Outdoor Displays in Commercial Applications

I’ve noticed over the last year the increasing use of outdoor displays in commercial applications.  Once regulated to residential porches and light commercial use (such as a sports bar’s outdoor covered patio), manufacturers are now producing displays that eliminate the need for environmental enclosures and kiosks.

Today, properly specified displays provide many benefits compared to the traditional panel within an enclosure or kiosk.  Some of those benefits include but are not limited to:

  • Weatherproof operation at a considerable lower cost without expensive environmental enclosures & kiosks
  • Better picture due to no gap between the screen and an outer enclosure glass that may hinder picture quality
  • Overall reduction in physical size and weight for the application
  • Simpler mounting and installation
  • Ease of on-going maintenance

But how does a design engineer specify the right outdoor panel for a particular environmental application?  It’s relatively simple – match the properly-rated display to the outdoor demands of the application.  First, assess the application environmental demands:

  • Environmental temperature extremes.
  • Dust & water extremes (both type of dust and at what angles they can attack a panel).
  • Under cover or in direct sunlight.
  • Maintenance access (e.g., mounted high, extremely restricted location, etc.).
  • Exposure to glass-breaking projectiles like rocks and such.

Now, match the display to the environmental demands of the application.

  • Temperature Extremes: Coldest and warmest extremes a display can safely operate.
  • Dust and Moisture: Determine a display’s rating using either a NEMA Enclosure Rating (relative dust & particle resistance measurement) or the more popular “IP’ Rating (Ingress Protection as defined by DIN EN 60529).  An IP rating indicates the external conditions enclosures can withstand.  It describes a display’s scope of protection during use when exposed to temperatures, fuel and oil and their fumes, chemical clouds, acid based moisture and dust entering the display. For example, the “I” in IP has a scale of 1 to 6 that defines the protection against contact and ingress of dust.  The “P” has a scale of 0 to 9k that defines ingress of moisture from water droplets to high pressure steam cleaning.
  • Indirect or Direct Sunlight: If direct sunlight is a factor, consider a panel with UV optical bonding that can eliminate reflection & refraction glare so it can be easily seen in direct sunlight.  Note that simply being a high brightness panel (1500+ nits) doesn’t necessarily translate to good picture in direct sunlight.  It’s hard to out bright the sun!
  • Impact Resistant: Determine if the display needs to be protected from impacts.  And should the screen be broken, make sure it is shatter proof to protect nearby viewers and property.
  • Maintenance: Some displays will be mounted high or in difficult to reach places.  The less maintenance of filters and the ability to be hosed-off or pressure washed can be key.

Almo ProAV partners with Peerless-AV to offer a family of outdoor displays starting with the IP55-rated UltraView Series up to the IP68-rated Xtreme series.  We can match the right display for the environmental demands of temperatures, dust & moisture, direct sunlight, impact resistance, and ease of maintenance.  Also, we will assist in pairing the proper outdoor, wind-rated mount.  Feel free to contact me or your Almo ProAV Account Rep.  We’ll be happy to assist you in specifying the right display for your outdoor application.

The Great Outdoors (Part II): Selecting the Perfect Outdoor Digital Signage Solution

While we know it can be challenging to pin down application details in the early stages of a project, gathering as much info as you can early on can help save thousands of dollars from the get-go and can even save you from headaches later where you might need to modify your proposal to reflect the correct product and adjusted labor.  In Part I of The Great Outdoors,  we highlighted 5 questions to help our reseller partners uncover specific needs for getting outdoor digital signage right the first time.

Now, let’s take a look at some of the unique features Samsung has engineered as part of their totally new 2016 outdoor lineup and see if we can put the answers to those questions to work for you!

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For example, knowing who the audience is and where the unit(s) will be located may clue you in on the need for durability features.  Let’s say you’re working on an application for a movie theater, college campus or theme park, you may want to suggest a model with Magic Protection Glass which can withstand whacking from a hammer or even a baseball bat to protect the investment your clients are making in digital signage against rowdy patrons or students.  Three of the five new series include Magic Protection Glass: OHF, OHD & OHE Series. (See chart at bottom).  Another feature is Polarized Sunglass Support which ensures a perfect picture regardless of the viewer’s lenses and eliminates the blinding glare on most flat panels.

IP56 Certification is another important feature that can be essential to the longevity of an outdoor unit if directly placed in the elements. As defined in international standard IEC 60529, it classifies the degrees of protection provided against the intrusion of solid objects (including body parts like hands and fingers), dust, accidental contact, and water in electrical enclosures. The standard aims to provide users more detailed information than vague marketing terms such as waterproof.  Samsung has IP56 certification on the OHF, OHD and OHE Series outdoor units. (See chart at bottom.)

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Depending on the application, some locations may require round-the-clock operation.  With Samsung, select outdoor units are rated for  24/7 usage meaning they are engineered to run 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for 5 years to half brightness.  This means the display will run a full 5 years without any noticeable degradation in brightness; if used only 24 hours a day 5 days a week, this life span would be extended beyond 5 years, minimizing total cost of ownership.  Don’t forget Samsung’s 3-Year On-site manufacturer’s warranty on all professional displays, plus New optional, Protection Plus extended and expedited service options to help you meet the requirements for overnight replacements for more critical installations where down-time is simply NOT an option. Ask your Almo rep for more details.

Speaking of brightness, did you know Samsung’s new 24” compact display, the OM24E can not only take direct sunlight without blacking out the panel like many outdoor units, but it has also been engineered and tested to withstand temperatures of 110 degrees!  Plus, the display can now automatically optimize brightness control and increase energy efficiency using the new Auto-Brightness Sensor.  This allows the display to automatically reduce brightness to 200 nits or up to 1,500 nits depending on the ambient light which maximizes effectiveness of digital signage in any lighting conditions.  In addition, the OM24E also allows users to manage digital signage content wirelessly with built-in Wi-Fi and mobile app support.06.20 pic04

Although most applications are a great fit for complete products that are ready-to-hang right out of the box, we realize there are plenty of unique applications where digital signage displays are incorporated into an overall design theme or as part of another structure – Samsung hasn’t left you hanging in this regard.  In the OMD Series, Samsung offers two versions to accommodate needs for a fully-enclosed, ‘complete product’ (OMD-W) as well as a KIT version (OMD-K) which can be installed into a more customized enclosure.  Both versions can stand up to direct sunlight in a store-front window or out in the elements in a weatherized enclosure (provided by others); both versions now available in 46”, 55” and 75” sizes for maximum design flexibility.

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Let us know how we can personally help you on your next outdoor digital signage project and we’ll help confirm the right solution for your specific application.

Here’s a snapshot of the key specs on Samsung’s 2016 Outdoor Lineup: (see for full details)

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And don’t forget to register for this Friday’s Webinar on Samsung’s High-Bright, Outdoor and Weatherized Displays!

The Great Outdoors: High Bright, Outdoor & Weatherized Displays Defined on Jun 29, 2016 2:00 PM EDT at:
Drive-thru restaurants, theme parks, stadiums, retail window displays – these are all places where specialized displays are a necessity due to the outdoor elements, lighting and more. In this session, learn the differences between these types of displays, when to use them and in what applications. Through an examination of real-world case studies, you’ll explore the essentials for installing these specialty displays and important considerations BEFORE you start to specify a project.
Presented by Jonathan Brawn, Brawn Consulting on behalf of Samsung.

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