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Video Walls or Projection Displays Use In Public Safety
With the expanded availability and use of video to support operations in Emergency Communications Centers (ECC), Emergency Operation Centers (EOC) and other command and control centers, many jurisdictions are faced with the issue of determining the best approach to display the video. Do you use video walls, or do you install a projector with a screen for large displays?
The following provides clarification on the differences between video walls using LCD/LED display panels and large screen projectors to assist jurisdictions in making the correct decision.
Modern LCD/LED video walls (with video wall processors) have the ability to be arranged in various formats that may suit the need of the owner better than a single of multiple projection screen format. A video wall is created by "tiling" multiple display devices together, such as LCD/LED flat panel displays. By tiling displays, video walls of any size and aspect ratio can be constructed. A video wall display layout does not need to be limited to the standard 16:9, 16:10 or 4:3 aspect ratio of a single display. Video walls made up of flat panels or cubes occupy a compact footprint, due to each display's fixed depth. Regardless of how large the video wall is, the depth will remain constant.
Alternatively, front projectors require significant throw distance to produce an image that fills up a substantial portion of a wall or screen. Practical throw distance requirements may limit the number of allowable participants in the room without blocking the project image (unless ceiling mounts are utilized).
Video walls present the viewer with consistently bright images regardless of size or ambient room lighting. Normally, a single projector loses brightness as the image size increases or if the ambient lighting in the room is greater than a few percent. A video wall with 4 screens is just as bright overall as a video wall with 20 screens. The amount of brightness is dependent upon each LCD/LED unit in the video wall array. Projector output is measured in lux while most LCD/LED displays are measured in nits, so a single LCD/LED display use for a video wall with a brightness of 700 nits, would require a projector capable of providing a brightness of 23,982 lux (3.426 lux = 1 nit). Normally the brightest projectors do not exceed 4000 lux (15000 lumens on a 41.8sq ft. screen equals 3862.6 lux).
Pixel density is the number of pixels per unit area, and is determined by the resolution and screen size of a display. When a single projected image is enlarged, pixel density decreases. However for a video wall, pixel density is constant regardless of the video wall array size because the pixel density is based on each individual display. Enlarging the video wall array increases the overall resolution of the video wall. A video wall will deliver much higher pixel density than a projected image for the same size. An image can be upscaled for enlargement so that it fills the complete video wall without compromising picture quality. In contacts, significantly enlarging an image from a projector reduces apparent resolution and image quality.
Additionally, maintenance cost over the long term can be more of a problem for projectors than the LCD/LED displays that make up the video wall. Unless the more expensive laser light source projectors are purchased, the lamps in a projector must be replaced between every 500 to 2000 hours depending upon the manufacturer. These lamps range in price from $200.00 to $600.00 and take time to remove and replace in a unit, resulting in down time. Further, over the life of the projector lamp (again excluding laser light sources) the light output will drop by 30 percent average over 12 months.
Newer projectors with laser light sources do provide up to 30,000 hours of operation for the laser engine life, however these units still have some of the problems described above with ambient light, video resolution, and brightness as image size increases. Additionally, these units also have a higher up-front cost than do the lamp driven projectors.
Although the initial cost for a video wall made up with LCD/LED displays is higher than that of a projector, over the life of the video wall, the total cost of ownership is less than a projection display system. In addition, the life span of the video wall is about twice that of the projection system.
Let Winbourne Consulting assist your organization in evaluating your alternatives.
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Winbourne Consulting has been selected by the Las Vegas Metro Police Department to provide project management assistance as they upgrade their Public Safety phone systems to a VoIP phone solution. Winbourne will assist the Department through their requirements definition and request for proposal processes to select the best VoIP solution for the bureaus, in alignment with potential regional Emergency Services IP network (ESInet) requirements.
Winbourne Consulting, as a sub-contractor to Ashburn Consulting, is assisting Arlington County in developing requirements, a procurement strategy, vendor selection, and implementation project management for the replacement of its existing 9-1-1 telephone system in the County’s Emergency Communications Center (“ECC”) and the Alternate ECC (“AECC”).
August 14-17, 2016 • Orlando, FL
Gear up for the public safety communications industry’s biggest event of the year! If you are a supervisor, manager, director; telecommunicator and dispatcher; engineer/technician; 9-1-1 coordinator; police or fire chief, you’ve got to be in Orlando in August 2016.
October 15–18, 2016 • San Diego, CA
Every year, the IACP Annual Conference and Exposition supplies you and your department with powerful advantages, bringing together an unmatched educational program, renowned keynote speakers, community-building special events and the largest collection of tactical equipment and technology solutions available for law enforcement. Join thousands of dedicated professionals from federal, state, county, local and tribal agencies at IACP 2016 — you and your team will get the intelligence, strategies and solutions you need to sharpen your edge and better serve and protect.
October 9-12 • Columbus, Ohio
NENA’s 9-1-1 Standards and Best Practices Conference is where you can take an active role in improving your PSAP’s performance and develop the standards necessary to address the current and future needs of NG9-1-1 and overall 9-1-1 service. With a program divided into three tracks, you have the flexibility to focus on the issues that are important to you in a dynamic, cooperative atmosphere.
Articles of Interest
FCC Commissioners Call For Help From Congress To Make Next-Gen 911 Deployments a Reality
FCC commissioners testifying before a House subcommittee asked lawmakers for initiatives to accelerate the deployment of next-generation 911 nationwide and to prevent the use of 911 funds for other purposes.
Better 911 Systems Through Standardized Data
The growing variety of 911 data, the U.S. Department of Transportation wants to improve local and state public safety operations with a unified data system. DOT’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration released a request for information for comments on a “nationally uniform 911 data system” with standard data elements for all computer-aided dispatch data, operational 911 system data. This standardization would help with the collection, standardization and analysis of local and state public safety answering points' 911 call data. Such a system could also enable the sharing of administrative, operational, cost and CAD data transmitted during 911 calls. The system would be made available to all PSAPs as well as state and local 911 authorities. It could be used to deliver essential information for strategic planning, decision making and improvements to 911 systems and operations.
NetMotion Wireless Releases Mobility 11, which Can Double Data Throughput
NetMotion Wireless announced the release of Mobility 11, the latest version of the company’s mobile VPN solution that offers up to double the data throughput of its previous version and significantly enhances server scalability, according to a company official. Mobility 11 was designed in large part to help public-safety agencies utilize bandwidth-intensive applications like high-definition video more freely, according to Steve Fallin, senior product manager at NetMotion Wireless.