Sign & Digital Graphics

February '18

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S I G N & D I G I T A L G R A P H I C S • February 2018 • 19 same size can hold four. That makes for a significant jump in clarity," states David Pratt, director of strategic accounts at Optec Displays. Making the Case for 4K There are several elements to that go into an effective digital sign, including image quality, price, compatibility, and content distribution. Sign makers should convey the pluses and minuses of each of these to their customers. Here we take a deeper dive into some of the reasons a sign maker would consider offering 4 K displays for a digital signage project. Image Quality—Let's start with the obvious advantage of 4K technology, the resolution. Fundamentally, when you increase the number of pixels, you gain more detail resulting in higher image quality. "To achieve 4K, the density of the pix- els within the LCD panel itself needed to increase," says Cindy McCullough, product marketing manager at Planar, a Leyard Company. "Today's standard resolution is 1080p. 4K requires four times the pixels." In turn, there arises more opportunity to include increased data, features and more. "4K has enough pixels to fill four full HD 1080p screens," explains Pratt. "With four times the number of pixels it's able to display four times the level of detail and even more visual impact. Additionally, traditional HD is limited to 1920 verti- cal columns and 1080 horizontal rows of pixels, 4K has a total resolution of 3840 vertical pixels x 2160 horizontal pixels." This also means that 4K content can be generated in a way that "makes the display appear more life-like and enables content creators to engage the viewers at a higher level," says Todd Heberlein, business development manager, Almo Professional A/V. McCullough adds that proximity plays no factor in altering the picture quality, offering "an immersive display experience and clarity and detail that appears sharp even at close viewing dis- tances with no detail missed." Price—Because of their relative new- ness and qualities, it's no surprise that 4 K displays tend to fall on the high end of the pricing spectrum. "A 4K L E D display will be more expensive than lower resolutions because it has more pixels," says Pratt. "However, as production quantities and demand increase as well as the continued inno- vations in pixel technology, the costs will decrease." McCullough has noticed a dip in costs of late, stating that the price in standard resolution and 4 K is narrowing. "4K reso- lution has already started to come down in price," she says. The trend in consumer demand for 4K technology has helped the commer- cial side along. As Heberlein explains, "4K has become the standard in con- sumer displays. This has driven the cost down over time so that the cost differ- ence in a comparable 4K and 1080p 55" TV (if you can even find one), is almost negligible. This is not yet the case with For several years Almo has been conducting digital signage educational events across the country, including this E-4 AV Tour event in Dallas in 2016 where TVOne joined Almo's configuration to dis- play a low-cost, feature-rich 4K video processing unit that uses NEC's Tile Matrix feature. (Image courtesy of Almo Professional A/V)

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