One of the critical aspects of surveillance is seeing the images captured in a control room, on a laptop, tablet or a mobile device. While what can be done on a mobile is amazing compared to a few years ago and helps in many scenarios, the real value of surveillance lies in the displays that control room operators view during their daily work.
Therefore, despite the new work-from-home trend and all the talk about mobility, when it comes to control rooms (or control centres, command centres, nerve centres, whatever one chooses to call them), monitors and video walls are critical aspects of successful surveillance operations and this extends beyond security to any organisation that is required to monitor operations on a large scale.
Hi-Tech Security Solutions spoke to four companies that offer display solutions to find out whether display technology is still advancing, or if it has become a commodity, another ‘thing’ one must have to make your control room work. We also asked them to highlight the features of some of the latest display solutions on offer.
We had four basic questions for each company:
1.) What are the benefits of getting the latest display technologies for use in a control room, either as screens for individual operators or for video walls?
2.) Are control room designers focused on purchasing the best display technology they can, or are they happy to opt for the cheapest?
3.) In terms of monitors, what are the latest technologies on offer?
4.) Moving to video walls (because they are amazing), we look at the solutions to create ‘seamless’ video walls that look as if they are one large screen without gaps between the screens?
The answers we received are collated below.
Vaughn Tempelhoff, Forbatt SA
The heart of any control room is to deliver your video in a functional way. Video walls are probably one of the best, purpose-built ways to bring your video across to you in a functional way for control room operators’ attention. Should any event arise, operators can then take control from workstations and client PCs in order to investigate further.
Your display requirements will, in most cases, depend on budget. Some just don’t have the funds available for a purpose-built display. In this case, the inevitable happens as normal TVs, not built for 24/7 display are deployed in these applications. This results in colour burns and will lead to them being replaced more frequently and could, in the long run, cost you more. Hence it is always suggested to make use of purpose-built displays in order to bring your video across in a functional manner.
Forbatt SA offers Kedacom video walls. Our offering will depend on the partner’s custom requirements, including size, resolution, amount of inputs required and more. (Kedacom also replied with more information on that brand’s display technology, see below).
Kedacom video walls are seamless in display. One video wall, currently on display at Forbatt SA is 4,8 m wide and 2,7 m high (see image). It consists of 64 LED panels, seamless connecting to four signal processors and they in turn connect to a multiviewer. Fobatt has the functionality to support up to 12 HDMI displays on various customisable display options and can assist with any requirement for these units.
Bruian Chan, Kedacom
In terms of the evolutionary history of display technologies, control rooms in all industries are following these basic development rules: smaller pixel pitch, proportional spacing conformity, convenient maintenance, more stable performance and optimised image processing.
Kedacom’s latest display units are designed according to the 16:9 ratio size, in line with the pupil ratio of the human eye. In terms of brightness Kedacom offers lower brightness and higher grayscale, adapted to indoor application viewing scenarios, as well as a large viewing angle to ensure consistency (160° for both horizontal and vertical viewing angles).
Kedacom also includes a redundant backup feature in terms of data ports that support self-adaptation. This means that in the event of a port failure, the system can automatically switch to the backup port. Kedacom has also developed professional image processing technology to address issues such as brightness, chroma, colour temperature, colour gamut and saturation to achieve a ‘best balance’ mode.
When it comes to video walls, Kedacom provides ultra-small pixel pitch to a minimum of 1,2 mm, which is invisible to the eye and makes the entire image seem seamless to control room staff. Additionally, apart from the front of the video wall which everyone sees, Kedacom also provides a controller that can manage the configuration of every unit in the wall as well as the following:
• Condition monitoring: sender and unit cabinet status monitoring.
• Image control: brightness, saturation, hue, contrast, sharpness adjustment.
• System maintenance: account management, light box layout, video port configuration, network configuration, operation and maintenance and screen self-check.
The Kedacom display and control system is further equipped with the following:
• LDR2HDR technology.
• Noise reduction technology.
• Image scaling technology.
• Image saturation and hue harmony technology.
• De-blocking noise technology.
• Image sharpness adjustment technology.
• Anti-mosquito noise technology.
Erick Qin, Dahua Technology
The advantages of Dahua displays include high-resolution screens that present a clearer picture and can enhance the display effect. This leads to improved work efficiency and end-user satisfaction (due to a bigger screen and high resolutions, which is more conducive to capturing and collecting information on the screen).
Dahua has a range of solutions catering to every budget. For low budget monitoring, Dahua SA can offer various options with sizes ranging from 18,5 inches to 65 inches. For medium-sized budgets Dahua recommends the LCD Video Wall. The seam between two screens can be reduced to 0,88 mm, the minimum seam standard in the world and the resolution can reach 4K.
High-budget projects could make use of the seamless small-spacing LED display. This offers better display effects than LCD, excellent colour contrast, more power savings and its service life is up to 100 000 hours. Dahua can customise screens of any size for customers.
The company’s LED display is composed of lots of small LED module panels. So any size video wall (seamless) can be customised. Dahua can also provide one-stop solution for customisation, sales, delivery and after-sales service.
Alex Penhaligon, Hikvision SA
People want to see further and see with more clarity, thus pursuing ever higher image resolution has been a key driving force in the development of security industry technology. Imaging technology keeps evolving, resulting in footage with higher resolution and frame rates, wider dynamic range and much richer detail. Displays with limited resolution in control rooms often hindered the accuracy of video analytics, mainly due to missing image details. With latest display technologies, high-definition or ultra-high definition imaging technologies can be used to their full potential for more accurate analytics.
It is hard to say whether control room designers opt to buy the best display technology or the cheapest. It all depends on the needs in specific scenarios and they will choose suitable products or technologies to meet the requirements and needs of the control room operators.
Hikvision offers LCD video walls, LED displays, digital signage, transparent screens and interactive displays to suit different security needs. With outstanding image rendering technologies, such as dynamic self-adapting noise reduction, edge processing and cross-colour suppression, customers can rest assured that Hikvision’s commercial displays bring them seamless, true-to-life images and videos.
Hikvision LED displays can be put together to create a seamless video wall with colourful images at flexible sizes. Hikvision LED displays simplify splicing several screens together due to its standardised structure, which enables easy installation and maintenance and it supports common 1080p and 4K resolutions. The company’s solutions of indoor fine pitch LED, indoor fixed LED, outdoor LED and transparent LED technologies can cover a wide range of customisation needs from clients.
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