In December of last year, I had the opportunity to visit Panasonic’s Harrison, NJ technical research and training facility. It was a fantastic opportunity to peek behind the curtain, as it were, to see the technology that continually sets Panasonic apart from their comp read more
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!
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.)
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.
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.
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 www.almoproav.com for full details)
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.
While lampless projectors are not brand new, the technology has evolved and continues to improve as time goes on. Imagine an installation grade projector that can run 24/7 with virtually no maintenance and no lamp changes and carry a three year warranty. Imagine not waiting for your projector to warm up or cool down, where the projector will reach maximum brightness and turn off almost immediately. Combine this with advanced features like projection mapping, edge blending, and an HDBaseT input packaged in a bright enough projector for large venues and you have quite a value proposition for your clients.
Laser projectors offer several benefits over traditional lamp based technologies. Let me clarify that laser simply refers to the light source, so the projection technologies like 3LCD are still a major part of these new projectors. Traditional lamp based projectors require the lamp to be replaced roughly every 1500 to 6000 hours depending upon the projector and the mode you run it in, while the average lifespan of a laser based projector is 20,000 hours.
Additionally, with most traditional lamp based projectors it takes a few minutes for the projector to warm up after powering on, and can take up to thirty minutes to provide a stable brightness level and often need to remain plugged in after powering off in order to properly cool the lamp. With laser based projectors they are ready to go almost immediately after being powered on and do not require a connected power source upon powering off with no worry of damaging the projector’s light source.
As far as the light source, projector lamps lose most of their brightness in the first half of their lifecycle whereas with a laser based light source the brightness loss is linear over the 20,000 hour lifecycle. What does this mean? This means that if you compare a laser based projector with a lamp based projector, both with the same light output rating (lumens) that within a very short period of time the laser projector will have the brighter image. Furthermore, even lamp based projectors with higher light output ratings than a laser based projector will quickly provide a lower light output than the laser projector due to the steep curve in degradation of the lamps brightness.
Epson’s popular Pro G and Pro Z installation grade projectors will soon be joined by the new Pro L series of laser based projectors with multiple choices ranging in brightness from 6,000 lumens to 12,000 lumens and multiple lens options with all of the features that users of the Pro G and Pro Z models have grown to love. Expect to start seeing these shipping in June of 2016. I know I can’t wait to get my hands on one.
For more information on Epson Projectors contact Brian Rhatigan at email@example.com or 888.420.2566 x6546
As audio video systems and installations have become more complex over time, the need for sending multiple signal types and control over long distances has increased. With that, it seems there are an endless number of choices in signal extension hardware, which might have you wondering which product is the right choice for your installation. Naturally image quality and reliability should be your two biggest concerns, as well as explaining the technology and selling your customer on the need for this type of hardware.
Until a few short years ago, each manufacturer of signal extension hardware typically used their own proprietary technologies so that for example a Kramer branded transmitter would likely not work with a Tripp Lite branded receiver. Additionally there seemed to be a big variance in quality between brands, especially when it came to extending HDMI signals. The introduction of HDBaseT was a game changer in that you now have a consistent chipset used by all manufacturers so reliability is much more consistent between products, and since it is a standard platform you can mix and match devices. It is becoming more and more common now to see an HDBaseT input already integrated into the display device whether it is a flat panel or projector, removing the need for a separate receiver all together.
For extension products that use the HDBaseT chipset, most manufacturers will recommend the use of solid shielded Cat6 cable with shielded connectors. This type of cable can be terminated in the field or it can be purchased in specific lengths already terminated.
There are many scenarios where signal extension would be a good option, or even required. So where do we start?
Let’s start by looking at cable lengths. While a hard and fast distance limitation is not defined, there are general guidelines that you should follow when planning an installation. In addition, differences in cable quality and video resolution will have an impact on distance as well. With analog signals such as composite, s-video, VGA, and component video you can usually send your signal over cable runs of 100 to 150 feet without experiencing a dramatic reduction in image quality. DVI is mandated to transmit at 5 meters or roughly 16 feet, and HDMI runs typically should be no more than 50 to 75 feet. The use of signal extension products will allow you to send analog signals to distances exceeding 1500 feet and digital signals up to about 330 feet. This distance can be longer with the use of fiber instead of twisted pair.
Next you will want to consider the cost of traditional cable compared to category cable as well as any physical limitations that may make it difficult to pull standard video cable. While shorter HDMI cables are relatively inexpensive, longer cables can start to get pricey. Even though there is a cost associated with the transmitter and receiver hardware, this often can be offset by a savings in labor costs as well. Remember that with HDBaseT extension products you will have the ability to send video, audio, Ethernet, power, and control (RS-232) over a single cable reducing the need for multiple runs. This greatly simplifies planning your installation since you will not need to know ahead of time whether audio and control signals will accompany the video signal in order to choose the correct extension hardware.
Note that you are not limited to point-to-point extension either. Hardware vendors in this category offer distribution amplifiers for sending a single source to multiple displays using a single transmitter as well as matrix switches with the option for HDBaseT on both the input and output side for larger systems. Some receivers also give you the ability to daisy chain to additional displays through a twisted pair output on the receiver. It is important to look closely at the specifications of different extension products to make sure they match your requirements for signal, resolution, and distance. In most cases having an available power outlet for the receiver will be required as well
Other features that are available on certain extension products include Gain & EQ control as well as Skew Compensation. Gain & EQ control will allow you to make fine picture adjustments at the receiving end while Skew Compensation can adjust for different parts of the signal reaching the receiver at different times due to the variable twist rates of the individual pairs within the cable and is usually only required for cable runs of 500 feet or more. While these types of features will add cost to the products you choose, they will be the difference between a happy customer and a dis-satisfied one.
In summary, like with anything else, careful planning and product selection will be the key to a successful installation. You must consider resolution, distance, signal type or types, and physical layout when choosing a signal extension product.
Just in case you haven’t heard all the hype about HDBaseT, this relatively new standard includes a feature set that converges uncompressed full HD digital video, audio, 100BaseT Ethernet, power over cable and various control signals through a single LAN cable. Keep in mind this is not the first time that digital video, audio, and control have been able to be extended over long distances using category cable, however this is the first time that there has been a standard for doing so across different manufacturers.
In keeping with their reputation of providing industry leading products Epson has recently refreshed their entire line of Pro G installation projectors which now all include an HDBaseT input removing the need to have an HDBaseT receiver near the projector.
Why does this matter? First off, there is a cost savings of up to a few hundred dollars from not having to purchase a receiver unit. Second, these projectors can now receive digital video, audio, & control over a single cable from source equipment that is in excess of 300 feet away. Additionally, since HDBaseT is a standard, you can use transmitters from whoever your preferred manufacturer is.
This latest refresh of the Epson Pro G series installation projectors also includes a settings cloning feature to speed up and simplify multiple projector installations as well as support for a wider range of control system protocols.
10/100BaseT… Gigabit Ethernet… 802.11b/g/n… IPv6… HDBaseT…. For some folks in AV, just hearing IT terminology requires a dosage increase in the antacid du jour. The good news is that HDBaseT, while sounding like something borrowed from the world of networking, is actually an easy to implement AV technology.
Many of us are familiar with pulling cables from multiple sources to an output device, along with the potential challenges that can arise. A basic projector installation may require pulling nine or more cables and then labor for terminations; one for control, one for HDMI, five for RGBHV, and perhaps a couple for audio. Nine terminations at roughly fifteen minutes each, equates to over two man-hours of just terminations on a single projector. HDBaseT can reduce materials cost and installation time by reducing the total number of cables and field terminations to a single Cat5e/6 cable with RJ45 connectors – all without the need to know anything about networking, switches, IP addresses, or other reflux inducing technology.
HDBaseT can carry all of the following signal types simultaneously:
- Uncompressed full HD digital video – It is HDMI 1.4 compliant and HDCP approved
- Uncompressed Audio
- Control signals – However, it is not compatible with CEC
- 100BaseT Ethernet – with future support of Gigabit Ethernet
- Power – 100 watts maximum
Implementing HDBaseT is not much different from other AV signals. This is a point-to-point technology. On the projector or display, just select HDBaseT as input in the same manner as selecting any of the other conventional inputs. There are no IP configurations or other network related settings to fiddle with. Cable runs up to 100M are supported, along with up to eight hops (or 800M). It is important to use solid wire with a shielded cable as signal dropouts have been reported with UTP (unshielded twisted pair). Cables listed as STP, FTP (Foiled Twisted Pair) or ScTP (Screened Twisted Pair) are acceptable. The same common sense that applies with other signal types applies with HDBaseT – such as avoid running parallel to power cables.
Digital Link is a Panasonic brand specific feature set added on top of HDBaseT that provides two-way communication with Panasonic projectors. This includes the ability to control other devices from the projector’s remote. Many manufactures are now building HDBaseT outputs into their control devices and signal extenders. Signals feeding these systems are output as HDBaseT. AMX and Kramer are two such manufacturers. This allows you to run short cables to a device mounted in a rack near the sources. Then run a single cable from the rack to the display device – potentially replacing 15-20 lbs of various signal-carrying cables running through conduit.
Many manufactures are now building HDBaseT outputs into their control devices and signal extenders. Signals feeding these systems are output as HDBaseT. AMX and Kramer are two such manufacturers. This allows you to run short cables to a device mounted in a rack near the sources. Then run a single cable from the rack to the display device – potentially replacing 15-20 lbs of various signal-carrying cables running through conduit.
If the projector does not have a Digital Link or HDBaseT input, third-party HDBaseT receivers can be installed at the projector or display end. The example shown in Figure 3 is a Kramer TP-582R. The HDBaseT/Digital Link signal is sent from the interface shown above, and connected to the line input on the receiver. HDMI and RS-232 cables are then connected to the projector or display.
In summary, a single Cat5e/Cat6 cable with RJ45 connector…
- Simplifies and reduces cabling and termination costs
- Eliminates the need for long and expensive pre-fab HDMI cables
- Reduces potential points of failure
- Provides reliable, extended cable runs
While reducing installation cost may help win more business, you may also choose to keep some of the savings and potentially increase profits.