Arts College Updates Aging Auditorium Projector with ViewSonic Direct View LED Display
When an aging auditorium projector starts to deliver dulled images, it’s never a good look. When the auditorium is at a college dedicated to the arts, it’s even worse. This was the case at this well-known arts college in a major US city. Thankfully, funding had become available to replace the outdated technology.
The small, multipurpose auditorium was primarily used by the media arts program for instruction. The screen was a focal point for lectures that centered around displaying digital still art and video. After-hours the auditorium was used to screen films and for students to workshop their pieces.
The college’s IT Director appointed a staff member to lead the project. They reached out to their local AV specialist, who recommended that they look at the latest Direct View LED technology. A tiled LCD wall, which might be suitable for a standard lecture hall, despite the bezel lines, was immediately off the table – clarity and cohesiveness of images was critical in this arts environment.
The IT point-person was immediately impressed by many features of Direct View LED compared to projection. However, his first consideration was image quality. The AV consultant assured him that the latest technology with ultra-fine pixel pitch – Direct View LED displays from his preferred supplier ViewSonic – would deliver what he was looking for: vibrant, color-consistent, detailed images.
He recommended the ViewSonic® LDP216-121 Direct View LED display. At 216-inches, he found this display to be an ideal fit for many professional, commercial, and entertainment settings, including large meeting rooms,
At 216-inches, he found this display to be an ideal fit for many professional, commercial, and entertainment settings, including large meeting rooms, auditoriums, and home cinemas. To get a bit technical, the massive display included 4K Ultra-HD resolution, a 120% Rec. 709 wide color gamut, and 500 nits of brightness.
auditoriums, and home cinemas. To get a bit technical, the massive display included 4K Ultra-HD resolution, a 120% Rec. 709 wide color gamut, and 500 nits of brightness. It also offered support for advanced video features like high dynamic range (HDR), which delivers darker blacks, brighter highlights, and overall richer, more vivid color, and Hybrid Log Gamma (HLG), which could come in handy for broadcast media.
Also available with the ViewSonic 216-inch Direct View LED display was the was the ability to display picture-in-picture (PIP) and picture-by-picture (PBP) views, for added versatility in content delivery. It was further equipped with dual, studio-grade 20W Harman Kardon speakers with professional passive radiators, woofers, and tweeters for high-fidelity theater-level audio. The adjustable 500 nits of brightness, along with a high contrast ratio of 20,000 to 1, would maximize the clarity of images in any lighting conditions.
Before continuing down this path, the college’s IT project lead visited an auditorium in which his consultant had installed a Direct View LED display six months prior. The picture quality was stunning. He was ready to learn more about this new technology.
The Direct View LED display, he learned, was made up of smaller LED panels that seamlessly created the larger display. The first phase of installation would be to attach cabinets to the wall. Once those were leveled and mounted, the panels fit quickly into place. The AV consultant showed him a video of a panel being swapped out using a hand-held vacuum tool. The task was completed incredibly quickly, and was clearly something anyone on the IT staff could handle. He was pleased to learn that ViewSonic included several extra panels with its Direct View LED displays, for customers to keep on hand, just in case. The consultant assured him that every individual panel was factory calibrated and would deliver a precise match with one another.
Additional notable factors included the reduced maintenance compared to projection. With a ViewSonic Direct View LED display, there would be no need for calibration, cleaning filters, or replacing bulbs, which required a lift to access a projector mounted on the auditorium ceiling. Instead, any maintenance could be performed from the front of the display, as he’d seen on the panel-replacement training video.
What’s more, installation would be faster and less costly than putting up a ceiling-mounted projector system. Over the term of the 5-year warranty, they could expect to experience savings due to the minimized maintenance and optimized power consumption of the Direct View LED displays.
He discussed his findings with his supervisor, who wanted more information on how content was delivered to the screen. It needed to be accessible enough for professors and after-hours presenters to manage without a call to the help desk.
After consulting with the AV partner, he was able to report back with confidence that in most cases staff should be able to handle content display without needing support from the IT team. The integrated operating system worked just like a familiar PC environment, and would enable users to easily install apps, browse the internet, and play multimedia files. Connectivity would also be easy, with the built-in Wi-Fi. Finally, the included ViewSonic ViewBoard Cast™ software would enable up to four users to connect and share content from their mobile devices over a wireless network.
He also learned that the IT team would be able to remotely manage the display using the included myViewBoard Manager™ software. Using this cloud-based solution, they could perform just about any needed management task, from making sure the display was turned off at the end of the day for power savings, to installing apps.
With all of the information at hand, the decision was clear, and the IT team purchased a ViewSonic 216-inch LDP216-121 4K Ultra-HD Direct View LED display. Installation was fast and trouble-free, and, to date, all feedback has been beyond positive. Students and instructors love the bright, brilliant images. Plus, they’ve barely needed to reference the “How to Use” sheet the IT team mounted on the back of the podium, thanks to the overall intuitive ease of the system.