Pros and cons of LED video walls
Thursday, 31. October 2019
Von: Maurice Rener
We live in an age in which our technology and digitalisation are advancing rapidly. Every year, new electronic devices such as smartphones, tablets and televisions are introduced by the world's leading electronics manufacturers. Almost as quickly, there are new developments in the trade fair world every year, making it difficult for us to keep an overview of what is possible. Since 2019 at the latest, these include the now indispensable LED video walls, which have been visible at countless trade fairs this year. In this article I will discuss the function, the possible pros and cons compared to conventional exhibition stands and the costs.
LED video walls are the latest trend. No matter if it is a "public viewing", a concert in a hall or a drive-in cinema, LED walls find their place everywhere and overtake old and sometimes fragile beamer technology.
What are LED video walls actually?
Typical LED video walls usually consist of several modular small "LED panels" which are assembled together to form a whole image of any size on one surface. The possibility of assembling them offers advantages in logistics and packaging, while guaranteeing rapid assembly.
The LED panels are available in different shapes: Straight and curved (concave & convex = curvature inwards / outwards). Corners can also be built. This innovative and modular solution makes it possible to build almost any size and shape (prerequisite: stability and statics of the surface allow this). For this purpose, the panels are connected to each other at the back with bolts and thus find a stable and secure cohesion.
Construction and positioning of LED video walls
Please note: The outside (at least right and left) of the entire LED video wall should always be connected to a frame section to ensure the required support. These frame parts can of course be fitted with conventional fabrics or other materials and are therefore not "naked" and visible. In addition, a certain distance (approx. 50 cm) should be kept behind the video surface to the edge of the stand so that the panels can be mounted with a ladder.
Installation should be carried out by a professional and experienced installation team to avoid errors and damage. To ensure that the panels are supplied with power and that they understand their "position" in the overall picture, they are connected to each other at the back by cables. This cable then goes to a controller, which is connected to a computer with the appropriate software and instructs each individual panel to play back its image.
Management of LED video walls
Thanks to current technology, computers and controllers can now be dispensed with. A simple and small control panel with a single uncomplicated on/off switch is sufficient to operate it. If there is mobile internet access at the respective location, it is even possible to provide remote access for control and maintenance.
Video content on LED video walls
The content that can be played back afterwards is as individual as you are. From moving images in the form of videos to PowerPoint presentations, everything is possible. Everything you want to show on your laptop can now be played on a large video wall on your trade fair stand. Experience show that most product and image videos show on these surfaces. Some of them also have sound, this is possible without any problems, as long as the shown material contains a sound track and an external loudspeaker is available. By changing the respective content, it is also possible to give the exhibition stand a completely new design and slogan. Even promotions, competitions or announcements that you want to carry out at your stand during the trade fair can be easily and quickly distributed with a lot of attention. This should be directly included in the exhibition stand concept, because there is something to consider here:
The side ratio
In order to display ordinary 16:9 video as we know it from home TV on these LED display screens exactly the same way, the LED display screen consisting of individual panels should have the same aspect ratio as the content to be played. It is also possible, for example, to adjust an aspect ratio to 4:3. This is done either by adjusting the content or by adding or removing panels.
The digital LED video wall in comparison to the exhibition graphics
In the picture above we see such a LED video wall in action. Here at the müller co-ax exhibition stand at the EMO in Hannover. In comparison to simple "silent" exhibition walls, this LED video wall achieves a higher level of attention through noticeably moving video material. In addition, the brightness of the entire LED video wall is adjustable and can attract more attention than "just" simple or even backlit walls due to its high luminosity. The "LED video wall" clearly wins the comparison to conventional exhibition walls due to its exclusivity, innovation, size and luminosity.
I can not tell you how sustainable the production of the panels is. However, what can be assumed in comparison to conventional exhibition walls is the following:
- Due to its long service life and reusability, with regular care and maintenance (assuming good handling), the LED video wall has the advantage that it can be used at countless trade fairs over the years, as there is almost no wear and tear as with conventional trade fair walls.
- In addition, this technology can be used at any trade fair on any topic in any industry, since only the content to be played is decisive. Should a company want to change the content or visually redesign or modify the exhibition stand, it is possible to do this at the "push of a button" instead of producing a new exhibition wall or graphics.
Cons of LED video walls
Unfortunately, this digitalization is not without its disadvantages. For example, this technology is still quite expensive at the moment, as there are few providers on the market who offer good and reliable solutions. In addition, the alternatives such as flat-screen TVs or beamers with a screen combination are not comparable with the actual solution, as they either cannot be integrated into the exhibition landscape or simply do not attract enough attention due to poor resolution and lack of brightness.
In addition, it should be noted that a certain minimum distance should be kept from the area being played on. If, for example, you have a stand with a depth of 1 metre, this technique should not be used due to the short distance to the next aisle. The direct distance to the screen surface could be too obtrusive for visitors and act as a barrier. The LED panels currently available have a lower resolution than what we are used to from our home TVs. Due to this fact, a minimum distance of 2-2.5m to the next viewer should be kept.
WE.CREATE.SPACE. If you would like to plan your next trade fair appearance with LED video walls, please contact us.
Conclusion on LED video walls
It is a great technology that is currently conquering the exhibition landscape. There are many great possibilities which it offers. But you should:
- Pay attention to the quality of the LED panels
- Observe the aspect ratio
- Make sure there is sufficient distance to the LED wall and otherwise dispense with this technology