A Matchup: Consumer vs Commercial Flat Panel Displays

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When pondering the benefits of Consumer vs Commercial Flat Panel Displays for digital signage projects, there are various factors to consider. While both varieties of Flat Panel Displays can produce results with outstanding picture quality, the engineering is significantly different. Regardless of screen type, such as LED, LCD or plasma, customers should consider that professional displays are upwards of 50% more expensive than comparable consumer models. Below are several compelling reasons to choose Professional AV Design and Engineering products.

Hours in Use

Commercial audiovisual products are built to withstand extended operating hours, and they have the right thermal characteristics for sufficient heat dissipation in any display mode. Commercial displays often include additional fans to further the dissipation of heat, while consumer models do not. A consumer TV is built to be used for six to eight hours a day, but a professional display can be used at all hours because it’s less likely to fail at the wrong time.

Tamper-Proof Controls

Because flat panels are often used as digital signage in public areas, it is important for users to secure them to prevent disruptions and modifications of volume, power and other controls. A professional display is built to prevent unauthorized access, whether it is installed in a standalone or monitored public location.

Horizontal or Vertical Mounting

A consumer-grade television is not designed for vertical mounting. When a non-commercial display is mounted vertically, it can experience dark spots on the screen. The discoloration is caused by lower-screen pressure, which distorts the polarizing film’s alignment. With professional displays, improved production methods keep bottom-of-the-screen pressure at a consistent level regardless of mounting position.

Longer and Better Warranty

Consumer TVs typically come with one-year warranties, which may be voided or reduced if the display is commercially used. However, a professional display usually comes standard with a two-year warranty, and users have the option to purchase extended warranties in most cases.

No Burn-In or Image Retention

The PI and liquid crystal films present in LCD TVs have a range of impurities, which can interrupt the liquid crystals’ reversion to their original placement. This can cause defects such as boundary lines on the screen, which can greatly diminish image quality. Professional displays have fewer impurities, which limits the chances of burn-in or image retention.


Consumer TVs are not intended for use in the most demanding environments. With a professional display, users have a variety of options. For instance, professional displays often have fanless designs for use in high-pollution environments. Other displays are IP66-ready, which makes them perfect for outdoor use in a variety of settings.

Integration Options

Unlike consumer televisions, many professional displays can accommodate optional boards, which can greatly expand their application possibilities. These displays have flexible designs for removal and reinstallation of media PCs, simplified field support and reduced operational expenses. Most models are compatible with all resolutions, formats and refresh rates, including those on PCs and TVs. For help and advice on setting up a Commercial Audiovisual system, consult the pros at CCS Presentation Systems.

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