Sunlight and Your Outdoor Screen

Outdoor digital signage has many challenges. Protection is an obvious example, ensuring proper defence of the screen, against the weather and temperature of the external environment. Impact protection too, is a must, protecting against accidents and vandalism otherwise the screen may have to constantly be replaced.

One aspect not much talked about when it comes to outdoor digital signage, however, is the sun, and the many effects it has on a screen, but if you fail to take proper precautions from the sun and sunlight, the screen may become next to useless:

Sun Glare and Brightness

Sun glare can be a common problem with outdoor screen and is something most people will be familiar with due to experiences at home. Often in sunny weather, the glare on our TVs at home can force us to partially close the curtains, and the same problem can happen to an outdoor screen.

Of course, there are no curtains outside to reduce the glare but alleviating the problem in other ways is possible. Facing the screen away from the direct path of the sun is one method, but this is not always practical or possible. Anti glare glass/screens are another solution often taken, but these can dim the image of the screen, which will exaggerate problems with brightness.

Brightness of the screen can be an issue too with the screen’s contrast having to out-illuminate the power of the sun. A dim screen can look completely washed out making it impossible to see.

High Brightness Screens

High brightness screens are essential for outdoor digital signage. Most indoor LCD TVs have a brightness of about 500-700 nits (unit of luminance), but for outdoors, a screen with a luminance of 1200-1500 is needed. This will ensure the screen is bright enough to be visible even in exceptionally bright days and will allow the use of anti-glare measures.

Sunlight and Heat

Direct sunlight on a screen can have other affects too. If the sun’s rays are continually hitting the face of the screen, hotspots can develop, burning permanent marks on the screen face. This heat build-up needs to be transferred away to prevent screen burn and overheating and various different solutions are used to provide this.

This post was written by Richard N Williams

Richard N Williams

Richard N Williams is a writer and journalist based in Birmingham, UK. He has many years of experience writing about all aspects of the internet and digital technology. He is the author of several technology related books and his articles have appeared in various publications, trade magazines and online journals.

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