29 janv. 2014

The seamless canvas: a large video wall with no interrupting bezels

EXAMEN FUTUR - MURS D'IMAGES - ISE 3 min de lecture

Traditionally, when you build a video wall, you arrange modules like cubes or LCD panels to form a configuration that allows designers and users to create a pixel area that lets them display much more information than they could on a single video unit.

Why we need seamless video walls

The drawback to building such a video wall, however, is that each panel is surrounded by its borders, which results in the typical video wall appearance: a large video surface divided up into a grid along the borders of the panels.

Those grid lines (or bezels) interrupt the video wall's expanse of images - which can not only be annoying for certain content, but the optical gaps can actually hide information, or make it hard to read, and limit the full use of the video wall itself. So, in recent years, companies have been trying to make the bezel thinner and thinner to overcome this distracting limitation.

Setting pixels free

But what happens when you make a video wall solution without those interrupting bezels?

This new generation of products is introducing a whole new world of possibilities. Removing the grid of bezels: 

  • Removes the limit on the types of images that can be displayed
  • Enhances visual appearance
  • Prevents misinterpretation of the data/content
  • Makes higher resolution possible
  • Allows free use of the pixels

It's a fact that, when a customer buys a video wall, he doesn't always know exactly how he will use it - and, especially, how its use will evolve over time. The seamless video wall can be used in any number of ways, and it's the user who determines the particular usage.

The seamless video wall provides the user with the artistic freedom of a blank canvas: regardless of the type of content, the multi-purpose canvas gives the user a tremendous range of capabilities.


Different technologies to eliminate the seam

So, how do you create such a wall? There are multiple options. First of all, there is direct LED, in which every pixel is an LED. And, contrary to what you might think, there are actually high-resolution models on the market that are suited to display numbers and text. If you want to create a large canvas in this way, it is however hugely expensive.

Second, there is the classic projector solution. A projector can create a large canvas with no seams. If you need a higher resolution, you can combine mulitple projectors and blend them together. The drawback in professional environments, however, is that typically front projection is used. This means that persons that walk in front of the video wall cast shadows on the screen. Alternatively, you can position the projector behind the wall to use rear projection, but for this you need a lot of (expensive real estate space).

Rear-projection modules have always been the control room solution to this real estate problem. They combine the advantages of rear projection with limited real estate needs, because they consist of several building blocks. The drawback: seams! Although small, they interrupt the readability of the canvas.

Our solution: a true seamless canvas

With the Overview Seamless Video wall (OSV), Barco combines the advantages of rear projection with the delights of a seamless canvas. We do this by blending the images of our (proven) range of video walls. The result is a stunning seamless video wall that can be used for a wide range of applications (typically utilities, finance and lobby), in even the most demanding environments. There are two ranges: the LL (Long Lifetime) series that are typically used in 24/7 applications, and the HB (High Brightness) series for use in any lighting environment. Furthermore, these models are available in both straight and curved version, depending on the customer's needs.