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The era of digital signage approaches

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March 9, 2009

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March 9, 2009 With large screen prices dropping dramatically due to mass production, digital signs are now at a price point where they make sense as a cost-efficient communication medium for a variety of applications across retail, hospitality, tourism, public transport, trade shows and out-of-home advertising. Panasonic released three Full High Definition (FHD) commercial Plasma panels this week, topped by a 1920 x 1080p 58 incher with 1,000,000:1 dynamic contrast ratio, a 100,000 hour life span and a front panel of tempered glass for protection in hostile public places. The screens can simultaneously display two different AV sources and hook together 25 at a time as multi-screen systems.

Panasonic's TH-58PF11WK, TH-50PF11WK and the TH-42PF11WK models are designed for the digital signage market, all offering 1920 x 1080p and 1,000,000:1 dynamic contrast ratio for superior image quality with depth and crisp detail. The newly-developed Dynamic Black Layer has an amazing contrast of 30,000:1, for the blackest blacks with enhanced depth. The Plasmas display around 110% of the colour gamut of the HDTV standard to deliver true-to-life colour, while Plasma technology delivers a sharp picture for displaying fast moving action.

The displays are designed specifically for commercial installations. They are durable, with a life span of approximately 100,000 hours and featuring a panel of tempered glass on the front for protection against knocks and bumps, making them ideal for public places. Like all Panasonic Plasma displays, they are manufactured with lead-free glass to minimise environmental impact.

The screens can be mounted both horizontally and vertically and the built-in image-enlarging system makes it easier to set up multi-screen systems with as many as 25 displays. In addition the dual picture mode means that images can be simultaneously displayed from two different AV sources. Advanced dual picture mode lets you overlay a video image onto a full-screen PC image giving you a more effective way to present information.

The built-in image-enlarging function makes it easier to set up multi-screen systems with as many as 25 displays. A new function lets you enlarge the image up to 5x vertically and horizontally independently, making it easy to set up multi-screen systems with up to five displays arranged either vertically or horizontally.

For convenient expandability, the new plasmas are equipped with three multi-function slots, allowing mounting of a range of terminal boards, with inputs including audio, video, HDMI digital audio, component and digital tuner. With the optional wireless function board feature there is no need to connect cables between the display and a PC, for seamless content delivery, such as conference presentations.

The display ID control function allows you to control up to 100 Panels with one remote. The Power On Delay function automatically shifts the power-on time slightly for each display unit in the system, for minimised load on the power supply.

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About the Author
Mike Hanlon Mike grew up thinking he would become a mathematician, accidentally started motorcycle racing, got a job writing road tests for a motorcycle magazine while at university, and became a writer. As a travelling photojournalist during his early career, his work was published in a dozen languages across 20+ countries. He went on to edit or manage over 50 print publications, with target audiences ranging from pensioners to plumbers, many different sports, many car and motorcycle magazines, with many more in the fields of communication - narrow subject magazines on topics such as advertising, marketing, visual communications, design, presentation and direct marketing. Then came the internet and Mike managed internet projects for Australia's largest multimedia company, Telstra.com.au (Australia's largest Telco), Seek.com.au (Australia's largest employment site), top100.com.au, hitwise.com, and a dozen other internet start-ups before founding Gizmag in 2002. Now he writes and thinks. All articles by Mike Hanlon
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