Inevitably, as part of the whole integrated package we tend to get involved with hardware as well as our digital signage software. Screens and PCs are pretty much a commodity now but the devil is in the detail.
Commercial screens, consumer screens, we use both, but in the main we opt for the commercial screens that are designed for extended everyday use, (and come with a 2 year warranty). Cost is pretty even, but the other big plus is that you can guarantee supply and therefore consistent design and specification. Important if you decide to add screens at a later date.
How big is big, a massive screen in a small space is just intimidating, and not that effective. Locating a screen is usually pretty easy in an open plan office, but when you have to work in small reception areas, or have to mount the screen in a corridor then you need to make sure the screen size is appropriate for the space.
A typical screen size is 42” – not a great description, what you really need to know is how much wall space the screen will take up, not just 1 figure for the diagonal size of the screen. You can basically work on these width and height dimensions to give an idea of the scale of a 42” screen 1m (3’) wide by 0.5m (18”) high, by only 50mm (2”) thick.
There are so many screen mounting solutions out there but it is a simple process of selecting one of the 3 most common options in this order of popularity
- wall mounted
- ceiling mounted
- floor stand
90% of our screens are wall mounted, and the screens are so light now that it is very rare to have to strengthen the walls, although we do this for screens that are on cantilever brackets on plasterboard (see my next Blog on Installation).
Ceiling mounts are great when you have glass walls or curved surfaces, you just have to make sure you can fix the ceiling bracket to something solid and there are no air conditioning pipes or cable trays above the ceiling tiles to get in the way of the metal pole that holds the screen.
A floor stand, whether it has wheels or not, can pretty much be placed anywhere, you just have consider how close they are to available power and network points (usually under the floor or on a wall).
I’ll cover PCs next and how we have nailed a bewildering choice down to a couple of reliable units.