1st in Africa – Barco RGB Laser videowall @ MTN SA

Barco ODL series RGB Laser videowall @ MTN SA

Our biggest Barco control room project to date, a complete Barco rear projection 40 cube videowall, Barco videowall controllers and Barco Control Room Management Suite software package was installed at the premises of Mobile Telephone Networks (MTN) in Randburg, South Africa.

We were fortunate to obtain permission from MTN to share the entire installation process, from dismantling the previous videowall to powering up their new Barco system.

The installation process start to finish

MTN is one of South Africa’s leading telecoms service providers with branches across South Africa and Africa, and is the 1st corporate in Africa to obtain this latest technology.

This latest Barco ODL series videowall is designed to operate 24/7, 365, for 11 years without a significant reduction in brightness and incorporates Barco’s unique SenseX technology helping to maintain image uniformity across the entire display.

A special thank you to Peripheral Vision, the South African distributor of Barco control rooms, Mr T S Zwane an external Barco specialist, Mr A Mahomed of Al-Kausar HSE services, and the Control Room and AV Solutions team for all the effort and long hours which was instrumental in making this massive undertaking a phenomenal success.

Barco videowall upgrade at the CSIR

The Barco OL series videowall post LED replacement

Disclaimer: No actual content from the CSIR was displayed during photography. Permission was sought prior to publication of images.

Control Room and AV Solutions recently performed some recommended routine maintenance to the large 15 cube Barco videowall at the CSIR in Pretoria, South Africa.

The replacement of the LED light source and cooling units is recommended after five years of operation on the OL series Barco videowalls.

New generation-3 LED chains and cooling units

The new generation-3 LED chains which were installed represents the latest in LED chain technology, and is considered to be an upgrade from the original generation-2 devices originally supplied with the videowall.

In addition, all fifteen cubes had their liquid cooling units replaced to allow for optimum cooling of the redundant LEDs and internal electronics.

  • Initial alignment check
Image alignment and colour balance

Once all the LED chains and cooling units were replaced, an image alignment and colour balance was performed to ensure that any content displayed over the entire 15 screens appeared uniform.

The entire operation was completed within three days.


Barco laser videowall at Utilities Africa expo

Barco RGB laser videowall on display at CTICC

Control Room and AV Solutions, in collaboration with Barco’s control room distributor in SA, Peripheral Vision unveiled the latest ODL series laser videowall at the Utilities Africa expo held at the CTICC in May 2017.

Benefits of laser over LED

• 2 x more brightness than mainstream LED-lit rear projection video walls
• 25% less power consumption at higher brightness levels
• More than 11 years of uninterrupted operation in 24/7 mode
• Unmatched colors, focus, and contrast levels
• Silent like never before (‘library’ noise level)
• Redundancy of critical components for ultimate peace of mind
• 50% setup-time reduction (motorized 7-axis alignment)

This 2×2 configuration videowall took our team less than two days to set up, from scratch, including the cladding, alignment and color balance.

See for yourself:

  • Barco ODL-721 construction 1

This product is available through Control Room and AV Solutions. Talk to us about your new Barco control room or contact us regarding the support of your existing installation. We are a Barco certified service provider with customer service at the forefront of all that we do.

Display resolution explained

What is meant by screen resolution?

Very simply stated, an image or picture on a display screen is made up of a number of dots called pixels. These pixels run left to right (horizontal) and top to bottom (vertical). The more pixels on a screen, the higher the definition of the image. For example, where a TV screen with a resolution of 640 pixels by 480 pixels (640 x 480) displays a picture of a flower, that picture would look a little pixelated or “fuzzy” when compared to another screen of the same physical size but having a resolution of 1920 x 1080 displaying the same flower. The second screen, even though it is of the same physical size, has more dots making up its image, and thus, the image looks much better or is said to be of a better definition.

The chart below shows the relationship between screen resolution and aspect ratio in a simple to understand manner.

Screen resolution and aspect ratio chart
A chart showing screen resolution & aspect ratio

But what do all the fancy terms and numbers mean?

Aspect ratio – This describes the shape of the image. It is the ratio between the width and the height of the image. The two common aspect ratios are 4:3 commonly referred to as “letterbox” and 16:9 referred to as “wide-screen”. The 4:3 image looks more square when compared to the 16:9 image which is rectangular.

Full HD – Full high-definition refers to a HDTV (high-definition TV) mode characterised by 1920 x 1080 pixels. This is different from 720p HD which is characterised by 1280 x 720 pixels.

VGA – Or video graphics array was a popular display standard introduced in 1987 by IBM. It had a resolution of 640 x 480 pixels. VGA was later replaced by SVGA which stood for super graphics array and was characterised by a resolution of 800 x 600 pixels and later extended to the very popular 1024 x 768 resolution while keeping the same D-sub connector.

DVI – Or digital visual interface is an interface, characterised by a rectangular connector, designed to transmit uncompressed digital video information between a source and display. DVI supports multiple modes – DVI-A (analog), DVI-D (digital) and DVI-I (integrated) which is a combination of digital and analog. The DVI specification is compatible with the VGA interface. Although DVI is primarily associated with computers, it is also used in consumer displays and DVD players.

HDMI – Or high-definition multimedia interface is an interface used to transmit both uncompressed digital video and audio over a single interface, from a source to a display device.

VGA, DVI & HDMI connectors
VGA, DVI and HDMI connectors

The table below is a quick reference guide to the different resolutions and terminology:

resolution chart
A quick reference display resolution chart

Contact Control Room and AV Solutions for all your visualisation  solutions, from single display digital signage to mission critical video wall and CMS solutions.

Authored by Yusuf R Shaik – Control Room and AV Solutions