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commercial LCD Vs domestic?

Digital signage or narrowcasting is an amazing and increasingly ubiquitous method of out-of-home advertising for many companies. Digital signage has become the ultimate way to provide video content, messages, information and advertising to a large and varied audience. Because it is instantly updatable and can be specifically targeted for both location and type of customer, it is rapidly becoming the standard “must have” technology for today’s business.

When looking at getting the right digital signage solutions for your business, you really have two choices: you can choose consumer or domestic grade panels, which are exactly the same as the screens you have at home, or you can choose to purchase commercial grade LCD’s. While buying and installing a domestic grade 65 inch screen with 1080p resolution may seem like the more cost effective choice for businesses wanting to get into digital signage, most industry experts warn that domestic panels are great in a domestic setting, but are not effective in most commercial environments, and may, in fact, end up costing you more in the long run.

Let’s look in more detail at the differences between domestic and commercial LCD screens. One of the big design differences between the two types of panels may not be very noticeable at first glance or for those not directly involved in the industry: it’s the quality of the enclosures, or the bezel on a flat screen panel that surrounds the viewable area of the screen and the back casing. Most of us take no notice of this area, but in terms of durability and strength, commercial screens are simply better designed than their domestic equivalents. The reason for this is simple – flat screen digital signage is normally found in areas of high traffic, dusty locations (think of airports or railway stations), or areas where they are likely to come into contact with other elements not normally found in households.

The enclosures of commercial panels have been specially designed to withstand a commercial level of wear and tear, just as the materials used in a commercial kitchen will be higher quality and more hardwearing than those used in a domestic kitchen. Apart from their hard-wearing nature, commercial panels will also simple last longer than other types of screens. This in itself makes them the only choice for businesses who wish to display their signage for long periods of time (sometimes days at a time).

Due to the relatively complex nature of the hardware needed to run digital signage, commercial grade panels also come with extra inputs such as serial ports and PC inputs for any hardware that might be need, while domestic screens tend to only come with simple HDMI or RCA connections and no serial control.

Finally, another huge benefit of commercial panels for digital signage use is their warranties. Most of the top commercial screen producers such as Samsung, NEC and LG offer commercial grade warranties of up to three years and even 24/7 operation, as opposed to the standard one year warranty on domestic models, which are usually automatically voided if the product has been used “over and beyond” four to six hours a day.

In summary, as the popular saying goes, “The right tool for the right job” – if you are considering investing in technology for digital signage, then it will pay in the long term to look at commercial grade panels rather than cheaper domestic grade screens.