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Tech Roundup: Video Walls 2024

In February, the Absen K v3 series launched in the US. Designed for retail applications, it’s available in 1.56mm, 1.89mm, 2.5mm, 3.9mm pixel pitches with a thickness of 39.5mm and a weight of 25kg/2. With a versatile 3+1+1 configuration, inventory management is simplified. An innovative wireless connector eliminates cable chaos and speeds installation. It’s adaptable to a range of environments and configurations, including Absen’s signature right angle and column aesthetic. An energy-saving black screen mode engages when the signal source stops.

In January, the Barco NT series of LED videowalls debuted. Powered by the company’s Infinipix Gen2 processing, Barco claims that color accuracy is maintained at every level of brightness, and low latency powers high-quality video. The cloud-based Video Wall Manager software supports automatic configuration and continuous remote monitoring. Thin design lowers the footprint and complies to the ADA requirements for accessible design. This includes auditoriums, lobbies, boardrooms, control rooms, museums, and television studios. Being front and rear accessible, the tiles can be easily removed for maintenance. The units are compatible with all of Barco’s new generation of videowalls (LED, LCD, and rear-projection), including TruePix, Barco UniSee, and RGB Laser ODL.

Last fall, the next generation of the Barco UniSee LCD platform came online. The updated version is designed for the future of critical decision-making. New innovations, including the use of mini-LEDs and Chip-on-Glass technology, contribute to optimal contrast with deep blacks; quantum dot technology contributes crisp colors and more saturation. A key feature is the uniformity with superior inter-panel communication. UniSee’s signature bezel-less construction and innovative mounting structure make the video wall act as a single large single canvas. Design priorities included reduced eye fatigue and a 20% reduction in power consumption.

An upgrade to the Emerald DESKVUE receiver, the Black Box Emerald AV WALL combines the control and management of a video wall and a KVM-over-IP system on a single platform. It enables users to place, size, and interact with up to 16 selected sources (physical and virtual) simultaneously across multiple desktop monitors and a 2×2 video wall from their workspaces, often without switching. Operators visualize large amounts of information from different sources for complete situational awareness and to collaborate with other operators. Adding the EmeraldAV Wall Software to the DESKVUE receivers facilitates collaboration: operators can share content on a 2×2 video wall, and hand sources to other Emerald users. Operators/administrators control and manage KVM and AV video walls through APIs. By cascading DESKVUE receivers, up to four 4K desktop monitors (one can also be 5K) support each user console and a 2×2 video wall directly. Support for RDP, PCoIP, PCoIP ultra, H.264/265 video sources, Cloud Appliances, and Virtual Network Computing (VNC), means the solution requires no additional hardware

At ISE 2024, the Christie Core Series III debuted. Available in five pixel pitches, it’s 40% more energy efficient, and 30% lighter than its predecessor, Core Series II. Christie positions it for impactful display in venues including retail, hospitality, and public spaces. ISE also saw the Christie Hedra, Christie’s new video wall processor. The TAA-compliant Hedra allows users to securely display, arrange, and operate multiple sources to make quick, informed decisions. It’s a secure, all-in-one control room solution with real-time access to data that can be controlled from virtually anywhere. Based on a Linux hardware system and with multi-view KVM, users can easily switch between different on-screen drag-and-drop and customized layouts and configurations. The processor
supports up to 26 inputs from both baseband sources, including HDMI, and IP sources. It can deliver data up to four UHD displays and supports video walls up to 32 megapixels in configurations up to 8×2. For small to medium-sized applications, Hedra is available in three models: Hedra Standard, Hedra Pro-KVM, and Hedra ProVideo, with inputs ranging from nine on the Standard model to
26 on the Pro-Video model.

The new Datapath VSN V3 video processor (third generation) supports the latest 12th Gen Intel Core i9 CPU to offer the best-in-class power alongside a new chassis design that increases performance for mission-critical displays. The casing has been re-engineered to offer maximum air throughput reducing system temperature. USB 3.0 is also now included to support high transfer speeds and connectivity to the latest devices. Each VSN can be customized to any project requirement with a range of Datapath graphics cards, capture cards and IP decode cards. The versatility of the VSN controller makes it ideal for large control room applications as part of Datapath’s Aetria solution.

Digital Projection has added a new MicroLED option to its Digital Projection Radiance LED EV Series, designed for image clarity and detail in environments dictated by short viewing distances. Including Micro LED technology in both pixel pitch 0.9mm and 1.2mm, the new EV Series is well suited for critical viewing in commercial applications, such as small- and medium-size boardrooms and command and control facilities. Other features include peak brightness up to 1,200 nits (excellent for HDR10 content) contrast up to 20,000:1, 100 percent (100%) NTSC and DCI-P3 color gamut, and a wider viewing angle (170 degrees horizontal/170 degrees vertical). The 0.9 mm MicroLED solution is more efficient to manufacture than SMD technology, bringing the price down for this category. Power consumption is also significantly less.

The HDBaseT Alliance has announced that its members Apantac, Sharp/NEC, and Valens Semiconductor have partnered to bring HDBaseT 3.0 to digital display and video wall installations. Apantac’s Smart Display Module incorporating the Valens Semiconductor
VS3000 chipset delivers a versatile plug-and-play solution for high-performance, longdistance multimedia signal distribution. The SDM modules are based on the Intel SDM platform, which allows them to be seamlessly integrated into modern slim profile displays. This eliminates the need for external adapter boxes, power supplies, and mounting hardware and greatly simplifies display and video wall installations. Valens Semiconductor’s VS3000 enables the extension of fully uncompressed 4K@60Hz 4:4:4 video up to 100m/328ft over standard Category 6A cable.

In August 2023, the INFiLED DB Series LED Display tiles debuted as the company’s new benchmark for super black LED screens. Designed specifically for fine pixel pitch rental applications, the DB Series utilizes ultra-black masking material and exclusive black LEDs and supports high grey scale levels and a fast refresh rate. The DB Series was designed with an emphasis on ergonomics and usability. The panels are of a modular design built around a die-cast aluminum frame, with inbuilt feet and edge protectors to prevent physical damage during assembly. The DB Series comes equipped with a fast-locking system for rapid construction, and a curving
system allowing both convex and concave configurations.

Jupiter has expanded its product portfolio in the 21:9 aspect ratio, 5K resolution ultra-wide display category. This expansion goes beyond the sizes offered by the company’s Pana series with dvLED technology and claims an industry-leading average electrical watt consumption per nits/m2. Jupiter Zavus XP is designed to provide pre-packaged 21:9 (customizable) solutions ranging from 165 to 281 inches diagonal. These solutions are particularly suitable for enterprise and industrial companies that aim to make visualization technology the focal point and centerpiece of their operations. XP stands for Xtreme Pixels; Zavus is available in 0.7mm pitch, 0.9mm, and 1.2mm and can handle all typical deployments, such as MTR/Signature rooms MTR collaboration spaces, digital signage, training facilities, NOCs/SOCs, and executive offices. One of the key technologies used for Zavus XP is Flip Chip Common Cathode. COB Provides an encapsulated pixel area with a smooth black resin coating that is suitable for (optional) touch.

In June 2023, the 272-inch LG MAGNIT 8K Micro LED Display made its US debut. The tiny pixel pitch makes it an ideal solution for a variety of commercial use cases including retail, hospitality, and corporate environments showing video or digital art content. This new Micro LED display offers a 0.78mm pixel pitch with LG’s Deep Black Technology and a 150,000:1 contrast ratio. The LSAB007’s Alpha 9 Intelligent Processor, integrated ambient light sensor, support for HDR10 and HDR10 Pro and wide 160° horizontal and
vertical viewing angles enhance user experiences in any seating arrangement. Several layers of coated film help protect the LEDs from water drops, dust, and physical impact

In December the Matrox LUMA Series graphics cards with Intel Arc GPUs began shipping. They’re designed to power digital signage and video wall systems in both the mainstream and pro AV graphics markets. The range satisfies significant demand for driving multiple screens and ever-increasing pixel counts, with a balance between size, reliability, and performance for different applications. Three LUMA cards comprise the line: the half-height LUMA A310 is a unique low-profile fanless card, ideal for small form-factor players in areas where quiet operation is a must; the single-slot, low-profile LUMA A310F is for applications requiring more performance, such as driving multimonitor graphics in retail spaces; the full-sized, single-slot LUMA A380 card for even more performance and GDDR6 (6 GB versus 4 GB) than the other LUMA models. For IP-based digital signage and video walls, Matrox LUMA Pro Series graphics cards can drive two 8K displays—or two 5Kp120 displays—or up to four synchronized high-resolution displays or projectors from one board. The LUMA A310FP is a low-profile PCIe Gen4 x16 (x8 electrical) quad-output graphics card for standard height systems; the LUMA A380P provides the same for small form factor systems.

In November 2023, the MAXHUB CM27 Series COB (Chip On Board) 8K UHD DV LED display debuted. Featuring a 20,000:1 super high-contrast display with either a 0.9- or 1.2-pixel pitch, the screen surface is the result of one-step molding that delivers a soft light-emitting effect that lessens visual fatigue. It has a super wide 170-degree viewing angle; the resolution is 7680 X 4320 Ultra HD with 16:9 aspect ratio. A dual-calibration technology supports true colors. A new drive design delivers both high efficiency and low power consumption. This system adopts a new common cathode architecture with a dynamic energy-saving IC (integrated Circuit) driver that lowers energy waste and heat dissipation
inside the LED chips.

The Opticis IPVDS-700-ED, 4K HDMI IP Video Wall Controller is an integrated control solution that enables users to play multi-source of audio/video (such as PC, Media Player, DVD and Blu-ray) on the video wall system and on multiple individual displays simultaneously. This solution provides an audio/video matrix feature as well as control with a simple encoder and decoder-based workflow. Control features include preview function of source video as well as various display configurations like merging and overlaying via drag and drop.

The Optoma 130” FHDS130 SOLO LED display is an all-in-one-solution for quick, simple installations, pre-calibrated out of the box for immediate usage. On a smooth viewing surface, it provides 1080p resolution, a 3,000Hz refresh rate, 800 nits of brightness and a 5,000:1 contrast ratio. It is powered by a single power cable and has low power consumption when powered on, and an eco-friendly <0.5W standby mode to save energy and costs. The display can be easily mounted to walls with the included wall-mount and is also compatible with an optional motorized stand with adjustable height.

The next-generation Planar Venue Pro VX Series line of indoor fine pixel pitch LED video wall displays is designed to revolutionize the production of lifelike content such as recorded, streamed, or broadcast video. The enhanced version now offers improved contrast, lower scan ratio, and higher frame rates for unparalleled in-camera and on-camera performance. Available in 1.5 and 1.9 millimeter pixel pitches, Planar Venue Pro VX Series models are compatible with Brompton LED processors and LED controllers from Colorlight, and support nearly any temporary or permanent installation. Convex or concave curved video walls are also possible as a result of built-in curving blocks with the ability to facet up to 7.5 degrees. Customers also benefit from built-in LED corner protection, front access, hanging or free-standing video walls, and a lightweight design and quicklock system for single-person setup.

The PPDS range of Philips X-Line video wall displays comprises six direct LED backlight models with bezels of between 0.9mm and 3.5mm. The 49″ and 55″ BDL2105X/00 feature a brightness of 500 cd/sqm, a finishing haze of 3% and PPDS’s Pure Color Pro software, making them suitable for use in stores and shopping malls. There are also three models designed for use within corporate environments such as meeting rooms, lobbies, and public spaces. Offering a brightness of 700 cd/sqm, their pre-calibrated displays improve the viewing experience by making challenging content, such as the small fonts used on PowerPoint presentations, clearly legible. The new 65″ BDL6005x/00, which has a 4k display (3840×2160) and can show content from multiple sources in real time, is designed for 24/7 operation as a futureproof display technology suitable for control rooms and video surveillance.

The Prysm Laser Phosphor Display 6K single panel display is 225 inches diagonal—20 feet wide by 5 feet high—offering a panoramic image uninterrupted by seams or bezels. The flexible, impact-resistant surface offers smooth interaction with 32 simultaneous touch points and can be viewed at any distance and at any angle without eye fatigue. The LPD is energy efficient, shatter-resistant, and offers rollability for transport. The new modular design helps speed display integration and permits installation in a variety of locations. The durable front screen, made of a specially coated polycarbonate layer, is rolled into a cylinder for easy transport. Thanks to this feature, integrators can negotiate tight corners and enter through standard doors and passenger elevators during setup.

The Samsung Wall All-in-One is part of the Wall series of indoor self-emitting MIcroLED displays. The modularity allows users to customize sizes and designs. The display has a slim depth with a seamless, flush surface allowing it to blend into the wall when not in use. The Wall All-in-One is engineered to be quickly deployed out of the box. Users simply choose size and resolution from three
pre-configured sizes: 110” 2K, 146” 2K, or 146” 4K. All components are built in from control box to speaker. The Sony Crystal LED direct view display system delivers high contrast, thanks to a 99-percent black surface area using ultrafine LEDs, precise color reproduction, and a 180-degree viewing angle. The technology is currently used in professional applications including corporate showrooms, retail, R&D centers, museums, auditoriums, and studios with installations across the world. Its modular nature enables the Crystal LED display to accommodate virtually any size or aspect ratio. Sony’s Crystal LED display system is available in a portrait
configuration, optimized for lobby, boardroom, and reception environments, further showcasing the display’s versatility, impact, and applicability in the corporate market. The newest models include the bright and rich Sony BH-series and the immersive Sony CH-series for corporations, retail environments, and screening rooms. Both are available in a P1.2mm and P1.5mm pixel pitch with front maintenance, improved installation flexibility, and lower power consumption at a lower cost. The BH-series has a high brightness of 1,700 cd/ m2, which Sony claims at more than double that of other high-end LED displays, while the CH-series offers 1,300 cd/m2 and a black level value that measures at approximately 1/10 of competitive LED displays, according to the company. As a modular
solution, customers can choose the size and resolution of the display. The new series’ cabinets are about 10 percent lighter and 10 percent thinner than the current model. They also use a dedicated display controller, ZRCT-300.

The new Sharp NEC FC Series builds off Sharp/NEC’s proven FA and FE series; the new Direct View LED displays feature next generation durability; it is anti-collision, anti-electrostatic, anti-water drop, as well as dustproof. The FC Series is engineered with the latest flip chip COB instead of traditional SMD and has no external cables required for installation. The front serviceable design allows for easy access and quick maintenance when needed and the new panel is 20% lighter than its predecessors. NEC offers full planning and design, installation, and post installation maintenance support. The FC series provides the most optimal display resolution that can be achieved for close viewing distances and the line-up includes three models (LED-FC0121i, LED-FC015i, LED-FC009i) offering a variety of fine pixel pitches (0.95mm, 1.2mm, and 1.5mm).

The Extron Quantum IN4FOX3 and OUT4FOX3 Series of input and output cards facilitate integration of an Extron Quantum Ultra II videowall processor within a secure FOX3 distribution architecture. Each card offers four channels of connectivity. They incorporate exclusive technology to distribute pixel-perfect, uncompressed video up to 4K/60 @ 4:4:4 over two fibers or mathematically lossless 4K/60 @ 4:4:4 over one fiber. Ethernet to RS-232 insertion enables control data to be transmitted alongside the video when a bidirectional fiber configuration is employed. These cards also support embedded audio switching for a streamlined design. Four Quantum IN4FOX3 models and four Quantum OUT4FOX3 models are available, providing full compatibility with the entire FOX3 product family.

The RGB Spectrum Zio platform drives
data availability and accessibility across the
enterprise and between organizations. The RGB Spectrum Zio 4000 is a full-function video wall processor with advanced networking capabilities and is available as a stand-alone video wall solution or integrated with the Zio platform. Newer enhancements include LDAP user authentication, display of locally stored videos, images, and the ability to display content using VNC or RDP. The Zio 4000 is TAA-compliant.

The tvONE CALICO PRO is in preview; it’s the first of a line of powerful, newly developed video processing solutions. Designed from the ground up, CALICO PRO is perfect for Direct View LED walls, extensive projector edge blends or displays, or even a mix of all three. It
will support multiwindow, multi-screen, and multi-layer applications based upon tvONE’s latest, fifth generation 4K/8K, 10bit processing engine on a new, high bandwidth, flexible, 2RU hardware platform.

The VuWall PAK s an innovative solution for deploying and managing modular video walls in AV-over-IP environments. It’s a compact networked, multi-decode node that can operate as a stand-alone appliance or be stitched with other nodes to build an IP-based video wall that is infinitely scalable. VuWall’s PAK device features four HDp60 outputs or one 4Kp60 output and multiformat decoding up to 32 HD streams per device, including H.264, MPEG2, MPEG4, NDI, PNG, JPEG, and VNC/remote desktops or virtualized browsers. As part of VuWall’s ecosystem, PAK is managed by the company’s TRx 3.1 software platform. Easy to set up and configure, PAK is designed for multiroom visualization, situational awareness, control rooms, and corporate workspaces.

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