AV & Presentation | InfoComm 2013 News

Display Gear Revs Up at InfoComm 2013

Advances in display technology are on parade at InfoComm 2013 in Orlando June 12-14, including a number of touchscreen devices, wall displays, new LED monitors, and related AV gear.

Mitsubishi Electric has developed a new LED Upgrade, which upgrades the company's older lamp-based 20-, 21- and 50-Series display wall cubes. According to the company, the technology makes the display walls more energy efficient and brighter without having to be replaced. The LED Upgrade is scheduled to start shipping in the fourth quarter of this year. Versions will be available for XGA and SXGA+ displays.

Mitsubishi also has come out with a new line of super-narrow bezel monitors designed for digital signage and other light-use video wall applications. When placed in an array, the gap between displays can be as thin as 5.3 millimeters, the company reported. Monitors can be mounted in vertical or horizontal arrangements. Among the key features: built-in DVI-D daisy chaining, which allows up to four displays to be coordinated without additional gear; a digital gradation circuit to make brightness uniform across an array of monitors; two built-in 10W speakers to eliminate the need for external speakers; and AMX and Crestron compatibility to simplify integration and installation. Models include the 55-inch LM55S1 (shipping in July 2013), the 55-inch LM55P1 (shipping in August), and the 46-inch LM46P1 (shipping in September).

Mitsubishi has also developed a line of display wall controllers and software to manage its monitors. The VC-TPXX series of display wall controllers are Windows-based workstations configured specifically for running Mitsubishi D-Wall software. They come in three sizes and can allow the user to manage between four and 56 cubes. The D-Wall software provides the display wall management, such as the abilities to:

  • Define areas of the display wall that each operator controls and where they can collaborate;
  • Monitor and troubleshoot the Mitsubishi displays in real time;
  • Drag, drop, and size windows on the display wall;
  • Preview layouts on a base computer before sending it to the wall; and
  • Change the layout by day of the week, date, and time automatically.

The company has teamed up with Shuttle Computer Group to create a "digital signage in a box" hardware bundle for plug-and-play digital signage. The package includes one or two 42-inch or 46-inch commercial-grade Mitsubishi LCD flat panel displays, a Shuttle digital media player, and cables. The kit also comes with a 90-day free trial of Shuttle's content management software and service.

Ideum has released two new multitouch tables, the Platform 46 full-sized table and the Platform 46 coffee table. Both integrate the high-performance 3M Multi-Touch Display 46-inch C4667PW with support for 60 touch points. They're built for public space use, such as in a school, museum, or research space. According to the company, the displays have chemically strengthened glass tops and the pedestals are constructed with aircraft-grade aluminum.

Each model has a bezel-free, high-definition 1080-pixel LCD display with 12ms touch response time. The computer powering the new tables is a desktop Intel i7 3.1 GHz Hyper-threaded Quad Core Processor with 8 GB of RAM and a 500 GB Hard Drive; that can be upgraded with a dedicated graphical processing unit, 16 GB of RAM, and 512 SSD for storage. The tables can also be purchased without the computer. The tables ship with Windows 8 Professional 64-bit and include gestureworks' GestureKey, a utility that adds Windows 8 multitouch gestures to legacy Windows applications.

Legrand has announced an in-wall device box to provide power, communications, and audio and video connectivity for wall-mounted flat screen monitors. The Wiremold Evolution Series Flat Screen Wall Box, expected by the end of the summer, installs in steel or wood stud walls and features removable device modules to support changes to service without requiring that they be entirely disconnected or reconnected. A four-gang box holds two device modules; a two-gang version has one module with storage space for active A/V components. All modules have a removable divider for separation of power and low-voltage service.

VTC Series Mobile Videoconferencing & Presentation Cart System

Middle Atlantic Products has engineered a mobile cart system for large displays. The VTC Series Mobile Videoconferencing & Presentation Cart System can support single screens up to 80 inches or dual large screens up to 70 inches and is built to handle up to 250 pounds of screen weight or up to 550 pounds of equipment weight. The carts have from seven to 15 rackspaces and features rackmount space for heavier components, such as UPS systems.

InFocus is showing off two new displays: the 70-inch Mondopad touchscreen collaboration display with a five-point multi-touch feature and four optical sensors; and the BigTouch, a Windows 8 Professional-based 55-inch 1080-pixel display. The MondoPad integrates a Windows PC with an interactive whiteboard, video conferencing, and Microsoft Office. The BigTouch allows users to run Windows applications--even older ones--in touch mode and includes a wireless mouse and keyboard.

Star Maritime Simulator

Scalable Display Technologies, Electric Picture, and Digital Projection International used InfoComm to announce completion of an upgrade to the STAR Center training simulator. The center, located in Dania Beach, FL, provides marine simulation, training, assessment, and research for the maritime community. The 16-foot, 360 degree immersive, ship bridge training display was upgraded to increase resolution, color, and vertical field of view, and improve ease of maintenance by reducing the number of projectors required, the companies said in a joint statement. The new projection system features nine Digital Projection HIGHlite 660 WUXGA projectors. Software from Scalable Display Manager calibrates the warp and blend for the display. Electric Picture provided the system integration services.

In other Scalable news, three companies--Sony Electronics, BOI Solutions, and Scalable--have banded together at the conference to build a "big data" display. The 32 megapixel display features ultra-high resolution and interactive multi-touch across externally connected PCs. The system encompasses four Sony GT-100 4K projectors. The display is calibrated using Scalable's camera based calibration software ScalableDesktop. The screen is made of a composition from Stewart Filmscreen. BOI handled the integration of the system.

Draper has been demonstrating its "semi-rigid" acrylic screens, which provide options for curved projection systems. According to the company, the screens are simpler to deliver and install than rigid projection screens; they can be rolled for transportation and fit through a standard door. The new screens are available for front or rear projection.

ChyTV introduced a new addition to the ChyTV digital signage line. The ChyTV HD-250 enables real-time 1080i and 720-pixel high definition input in a user-defined window or in the full screen with graphic overlay and can provide real-time data and clip playout in landscape or portrait mode. The display uses ChyTV's Tools utility to manage content and to deliver text and effects, including 3D animated objects. The HD-250 integrates with other devices such as bar-code scanners, motion and proximity detectors, and scent and lighting systems.

Sharp is showing off its 90-inch LED display at the conference. The professional grade PN-R903 can be mounted either horizontally or vertically. The company is also exhibiting smaller form displays, including the PN-K321, an LED 31.5-inch monitor that provides four-times the pixel resolution of conventional 1080 pixel for situations where detailed picture clarity is essential. The monitor is 35mm at its thickest point.

Also new, Sharp's upcoming PN-U display series, which features slim design, LED backlighting, and a number of input choices, including a "DisplayPort" connector for quick computer integration. The displays will be available in the fall in 55-inch, 47-inch, and 42-inch models.

Elo Touch Solutions, whose founders developed touchscreen overlay technology, has announced the launch of new digital signage platforms in a smaller size than its current 70-inch display. The 3201L 32-inch and 4201L 42-inch screens enable up to six simultaneous touches for multi-user interaction. Both offer "strengthened" clear glass and use EloView remote management software for control via Web browser or mobile device. The company said both products would be available worldwide in July. Pricing starts at $1,795 for the 3201L and $2,795 for the 4201L.

Elo also said it would be releasing a software-as-a-service application to provide management of touch applications. EloView monitors the health and controls the configuration of Elo touch technologies through a cloud-based server. Devices that can be managed include those running on Elo hardware and EloView mobile apps for Apple iOS and Google Android. The new suite will be available for download for beta use starting in September 2013.

Texas Instruments DLP technology

Texas Instruments shared new technology that allows a user to turn any surface into an interactive touchscreen for multiple users. With multitouch interactivity, the company said, the new addition to its DLP product roster will create a platform that could allow teams of students to collaborate on activities on a wall-sized screen and replace traditional chalk or whiteboard instruction. The company said manufacturers such as Hitachi, NEC, Panasonic, and Ricoh have been adding DLP technology to their existing product lines. DLP chips feature an array of up to eight million microscopic mirrors able to switch on or off at ultra-high speeds.

LG Electronics has demonstrated an 84-inch ultra-high-definition digital signage display. The 84WS70MS-B has a pixel resolution of 3840 x 2160, four times higher than standard high-def displays. It features a multi-touch option perfect for commercial applications. LG's LED models, including this one, incorporate the company's "in plane switching," a panel technology to optimize accurate color saturation and contrast at wide-angle viewing; the resulting quality, the company said, allows for the display to be installed at virtually any angle or height.

dnp denmark has introduced the fourth generation of its Supernova Flex motorized screen, which comes with a new controller, motor, and mechanical improvements, the company said. The Supernova screen works especially well in environments with high ambient light, such as spaces with walls of windows. According to dnp, the screens reflect projected light from above while absorbing and filtering out ambient room light. A special neutral black tint has been added to the screen material to produce deeper blacks, maintain color intensity, and reproduce neutral grays in highly lit rooms. The screens come in ceiling and wall mount configurations.

The company has also launched a front projection screen that exploits the Fresnel lens structure, an optical technology used in lighthouses that focuses projected light. The dnp Supernova STS works well, dnp said, in compressed spaces where the projector is mounted directly on the back wall and projects onto the screen from a steep angle, such as in a classroom or small conference room. The STS Screen comes in a standard size of 100-inches with a 16:9 format; custom sizes are available on request. A hard-coat front and aluminum back plate make the screen suitable for use in touch and interactive applications.

dnp also showed off InvisiBezel, an optical front cover that can be mounted on top of standard "super narrow-bezel" LCD panels. The company said the edges consist of prisms that optically stretch the pixels at the edge of the LCD panel in such a way as to conceal the bezel. The result is a near-seamless viewing experience. InvisiBezel works with LCD displays from LG, Samsung, Toshiba, Panasonic, and NEC.

Crestron unveiled a group of touchscreens in InfoComm. The new lineup includes three models: the TSW-1050 with a 10-inch screen for video conferencing use, the TSW-750 with a seven-inch screen, and the TSW-550 with a five-inch display, both appropriate for use on a wall or in a lectern or tabletop. All sport H.264 streaming video, edge-to-edge glass, power-over-Ethernet connectivity, and backbox mounting for simplified installation. The proprietary "Smart Graphics" recognizes gesture navigation and swiping and provides for kinetic controls such as knobs, sliders, gauges, and scrolling lists. The TSW line also has five soft-touch buttons for provide quick access to commonly used functions.

Crestron controller 

The devices' interfaces can be programmed with the use of Crestron's VisionTools Pro-e, SIMPL, or newly released Studio software.