Yes, modular display components are changing the way we do business. But how? And why is that important to our customers? Lets start by taking a look at how things used to be - just a short time ago - and how they are now. For as long as weve been in business, weve been ordering preassembled LED displays from the manufacturers in China and paid a lot of money in freight just to get them here. The average price for a dual-sided LED display was $20,000 - meaning not everyone could afford one. THEN AND NOW
Display Modules Each display module is made from hard industrial plastic and measures roughly 18.9 by Each module weighs about 13 pounds and has its own electronics and a built-in fan for cooling. Power and data are transmitted between connected modules via cables shown in the bottom right photo. Display front Display back with cables
The Controller The controller is an electronic device that takes the data a personal computer sends it and translates it into information the LED display can understand. The controller is made up of some electronic boards and a power supply. All of these components are enclosed in a locked water resistant aluminum case. The cables extending out of the controller are for power in and out to the display and for sending content (data) to the display. Each cables function is clearly marked on the outside of the controller box.
Content Creation There are two different types of content creation software packages. One type is for a monochrome display (red or amber on black) and the other for full color. Both are MS Windows-compliant applications and should run on any MS Windows-compliant personal computer.
Uploading Content To upload content from a personal computer, theres an Ethernet port on the controller marked Data in. For stand-mounted LED displays, one end of an Ethernet cable would go into that marked port. The other end into a personal computers Ethernet port. For higher pole installations, an optional wireless antenna can be mounted on the display that would communicate with ground antenna. Data in
Permanent Installation A mounting frame is needed to hold the desired number of display panels together. Frames can be fashioned from aluminum or tubular steel. Displays can be mounted from the front or the back. In the photo to the right, youll notice that the installation team mounted the frame first then populated it with the display modules avoiding the need for, and the cost of, a crane.
Stand Installations If a customer needs to rent an LED display for short period of time and/or needs more of a roadside solution, these display frames can be mounted on a stand. Some of the stand types are shown below. trailer hitch receptacleLarge roadsideSmall roadside Trailer mounted
Summary The market introduction of self-contained LED display modules and the unbundling of display components have drastically lowered a LED display customers total cost of ownership (TCO). Whether the customer wants a billboard-size full-color LED display or a single- sided monochrome display on a stand, now our customers can get just what they need and can afford. This is also a plus for sign companies because now more of our prospects can afford to benefit from the highly-attractive just-in-time advertising that only an LED display can deliver. Randy Rogers, President Main Street LED Signs, LLC Minden, LA