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United Visual AV Insider - November 2008

Table of Contents:
1. Grab Their Attention With Tightrope Digital Signage!
2. Wait Until The Kids See This!  School Just Got Better!
3. Unlimited Possibilities For The Artist In You!
4. Mitsubishi Expands Public Display Monitor Line
5. These Screens Travel Everywhere!
6. AMX Adds 72 Fixed Matrix Switchers To Autopatch Product Line
7. TOA Releases Six New Paging Speakers
8. Is Your Color Critical? Then We Have The Monitor For you!
9. Da-Lite Revolutionary Fabric Improves Image for Portable Screens
10. Extron Decora Mount Distribution Amplifier is Now Shipping.


1.  Grab Their Attention With Carousel From Tightrope Digital Signage!

How do you reach students in an emergency?  How do you inform the public of community events?  What about keeping your customers up to date?  How do you control printing costs and keep your messages fresh without wasting staff time? With Carousel, that's how!

What is Carousel?

Carousel is hardware and software package that was designed from the ground up to provide organizations with a very easy and reliable way to communicate essential information using dynamic digital signage.  You can display high definition images, video, text, import different image and video files, configure it to accept data from meeting management systems such as Dean Evans, Ad Astra and many others.

This intelligent digital signage system is designed with simplicity, security, scalability and economy in mind.  Start with a single display and expand to nearly limitless channels of signage in multiple buildings.  Use existing flash, video and graphics or enter messages directly.  Everything is browser based, so there's no software to deploy.  It's power and simplicity for digital signage.

Making bulletins in Carousel is as easy as 1, 2, 3!  To get started, simply choose from a wide variety of templates, type in your message, and schedule it.  In seconds, your message will be displayed for everyone to see.

Carousel has a multi-zone display, allowing you to display multitudes of information in an effortless and professional looking way.  Just configure a channel, add your zones, and you're on your way!  With Carousel, you can split your screen into zones, giving you extreme flexibility in designing your look. Carousel supports many resolutions and aspect ratios, including 4x3, 16x9, and 9x16.

All this and more, with the power of Carousel.  We can't wait to tell you, but more importantly, show you more! Next time you speak with your United Visual representative ask about digital signage and ask for Tightrope demonstration.


2.  Wait Until The Kids See This! School Just Got A Whole Lot Better!

SMART Technologies announces the SMART Table interactive learning center, a ground-breaking learning display designed specifically for preschool to sixth grade students (ages 4 to 11).  The new product is a brightly colored table with a touch-sensitive surface where groups of students can simultaneously interact with digital content.  Working together to complete interactive lessons, play educational games and solve problems, students think the interactive learning center is fun and easy to use, and their teachers find it educational.  The SMART Table provides a learner-centric experience for small groups that allows students to select or move objects, draw or write on the screen simultaneously, and work together to find answers to preset questions.  The interactive learning center is an ideal complement to the whole-class learning opportunities provided by SMART Board interactive whiteboards.  For example, a teacher can introduce a concept on an interactive whiteboard and then ask students in small groups to explore it further on a SMART Table.  The SMART Table's touch technology builds on SMART's DViT (Digital Vision Touch) technology, which enables multiuser and multitouch functionality.

The product reflects the company's leading role in touch interaction technology, particularly as it relates to interactive whiteboards and interactive displays.  The SMART Table (patent pending) is ready to use right out of the box, containing a customized PC and a projection system that are turned on with a single button.  It has a built-in 27" screen (on the diagonal) that can read simultaneous input from virtually unlimited number of fingers or pen tools.  At 29" wide and 25" high, the SMART Table is ideal for small groups to work around without crowding.  It ships with a standard set of interactive learning applications, interactive lesson activities and educational games, and also supports SMART Notebook software through the SMART Table toolkit.  A toolkit is included with every unit and allows teachers using a PC or Mac to create their own customized lesson activities and content, which can then be easily loaded onto the table with a USB key.  Independent software and content developers have already recognized the potential of the SMART Table and are creating additional content for it, which will be available with the product in spring 2009.  Technological innovation in education over the past two decades has enriched student learning and made it a more effective, learner-centered experience andThe SMART Table interactive learning center builds on that success by giving students a 21st-century tool they will understand and use to further their own sense of collaboration, discovery and excitement.  We're excited about this too!  Call your United Visual representative to learn more.


3.  Unlimited Possibilities For The Artist In You!

360 Degrees of Screen Orientation Possibilities with Peerless' New Rotational Mount Interface.  For the first time ever a mount interface removes display orientation obstacles with 360 degrees of rotation in 15-degree increments.  Peerless Industries, Inc. introduces its new Rotational Mount Interface (RMI1), the interface that goes beyond simple landscape to portrait orientation, opening unlimited possibilities for artistic screen placement for flat panel screens up to 71 inches.  Unprecedented Rotation Functionality For Screens Up To 71 Inches Changing the screen orientation due to a change of screen content is no longer an issue with Peerless' Rotational Mount Interface (RMI1).  This interface provides content flexibility for any digital signage application.  Go from landscape to portrait with a simple pull of the spring-loaded lever, eliminating the need to remove the screen from the mount whenever the content orientation changes.  In addition, the new RMI1 enables a mounted screen to be easily rotated and set at 15-degree increments within 360 degrees.  Ideal for standard or creative digital signage displays --- landscape, portrait, waves, zigzag and 45-degree angle patterns - the possibilities are endless.  The RMI1 is compatible with Peerless' selection of wall mounts, ceiling mounts, carts and stands.  So, tap into the artist in you!

Peerless' Rotational Mount Interface (RMI1) model is now available.


4.  Mitsubishi Expands Public Display Monitor Line With 52- And 65-Inch LCD Monitors.

In October Mitsubishi introduced three new LCD monitors - LDT521V, LDT651P and LDT651L - designed for high-impact visual displays used in conference rooms, digital signage environments, broadcast booths, utility control, security monitoring and other industrial and commercial display venues.

These new LCD monitors are built to withstand demanding commercial use while displaying rich color and deep details.  They offer a wide range of features for maximum application and installation flexibility at very competitive prices.

Mitsubishi's LDT521V is a 52-inch diagonal display that can be used in both landscape and portrait modes, and the LDT651L has a 65-inch diagonal display which can be displayed in landscape mode only.  The LDT651P can be special-ordered for applications requiring a taller, portrait mode display.  All three models offer 1080p resolution (1920 x 1080 pixels) for clean, crisp details in text or high-definition video.  With contrast ratios of up to 2000:1, each monitor shows vibrant colors with explicit details even in dark images.

The LDT521V and LDT651P monitors blast 450 cd/m2 of brightness and the LDT651L 420 cd/m2 of brightness for maximum visibility and image quality even in high ambient light environments like store windows.  By minimizing power consumption, these monitors reduce the total overall cost of ownership.

Using robust LCD display technology, Mitsubishi's new monitors produce clean text with virtually no burn-in for clearer images and no visual disturbance.  Digital zoom is offered on each monitor allowing users access to greater details by enlarging image elements.

United Visual's Mike Maturo comments on the full range of professional AV connectivity for high-resolution analog RGB, digital RBG, HDMI and other HD video source inputs for multiple computers, as well as Blu-Ray players and security cameras for maximum integration flexibility.  Mike also likes the fact that users can also efficiently layer sources for a picture-in-picture mode and see multiple inputs on one screen.

Each Mitsubishi display offers its own scheduling controls for easy planning of on/off operation, presentation timing, image changeovers and more.  Accessing features and control information through the display's menu is easy and efficient, and the monitors can also be networked using third-party solutions.

Our customers have been asking for larger screen sizes in portrait and landscape formats, and we're able to meet their requests with this line expansion from Mitsubishi.  We can now offer our customers more size and specification options in industrial and commercial digital signage venues.

Availability, Warranty
The LDT521V, LDT651P and LDT651L are currently available from United Visual.  These monitors are covered by Mitsubishi's Extensive Warranty Program, a limited warranty that includes extended service hours, longer LCD panel warranty coverage and onsite services and repairs.


5.  On Safari with Draper Portable Projection Screens. These Screens Travel Everywhere!

Wildlife photographer David Cardinal uses the Draper Traveller for an evening critique session during a digital photo safari to Botswana.

Imagine.  It's night time in the African bush.  All around you are the sounds of unknown animals stalking their evening meals.  A fire blazes nearby-the only light other than that provided by the moon, and a deep sky full of stars.  After a day of tracking and shooting wildlife, the moment has come.  You open and reach into the long, slender case at your side, and lift the contents.  A few feet away someone switches on a projector, and images of wildlife flash onto the portable video projection screen you've just opened.

The Republic of Botswana's Okavango Delta is one of the last places one might expect to find a video projector and Draper portable screen, but these are important tools for wildlife photographer David Cardinal.  Every year, Cardinal leads clients on digital photo safaris in this southern African nation.

"Having a projector and screen is invaluable for instruction and for sharing images," according to Cardinal.  "Each day features at least one instructional session for those interested in learning new techniques, and then at the end of the day we share some of the images we captured that day and discuss them.  Having a projector and a Draper screen also allows all of us to share slideshows from other trips as time permits."

Cardinal adds that instant feedback and accelerated learning are both strong points of digital photography, and having a projector, screen and laptops makes those two things possible on safari.

Because his mode of transport varies on these trips, Cardinal makes use of two different models of portable screen-Draper's Traveller and Piper.  The Traveller is self-contained in an extruded aluminum case.  At approximately 14 lbs., it is easy to carry but durable.  A built-in carrying handle and shoulder carrying strap are also included.  The Piper is also self-contained in a powder coated aluminum case with a built-in handle, but is smaller and lighter in weight, coming in at about 10 lbs.

"For trips where I have to travel extensively with the screen on commercial airlines the Piper is awesome.  Its lightweight and somewhat compact size make it the most convenient screen for travel.  But for our Botswana wildlife safaris we're often coping with a fair amount of wind so we use the slightly beefier Traveler model."

Cardinal adds that airplane travel and wind are his two main obstacles to using a projection screen, so extruded aluminum cases and sturdy matt white viewing surfaces of the Traveller and Piper are just the ticket.  "We had a less well built screen from another company on our first African safari and it literally fell apart.  The Draper screens are built with a simple yet sturdy design that allows them to hold up even in our outdoor locations-although we do need to tie off the tops of the screens so they don't blow over."

Cardinal says commercial airlines are a problem because the screens are over-sized luggage and perhaps subject to rougher handling than normal."  Once on safari we're able to personally load the screen into the charter planes in its padded case, so that works pretty well.

You may not be traveling to Botswana, but it's still a jungle out there!  Get your Draper screens from United Visual and you will be king of the jungle.


6.  AMX Adds 72 Fixed Matrix Switchers To Autopatch Product Line .

AMX expanded its popular AutoPatch Matrix Switcher family this past summer with Octaire - a new line of 72 fixed matrix switchers.  With configurations ranging from 32 to 64 inputs and outputs, Octaire is engineered specifically to meet the needs of organizations wanting to distribute high-performance analog video throughout large facilities.  Over time, the Octaire line will replace the current AutoPatch 8Y series. Since its launch more than 10 years ago, the 8Y Series has been one of the best-selling products in the AutoPatch line.  Given how quickly technology changes and evolves, this speaks volumes about the product's high-quality engineering and overall innovation.  Octaire builds upon this legacy of success by providing an even higher level of video performance in a solution that is 38% smaller on average, while simultaneously providing new tools that will reduce installation time and configuration.  The Octaire switching platform is built with proven BNC connectivity for composite, S-Video (Y/c), component, and RGBHV signal styles in 4 rack unit (RU) enclosure combinations.  It is an ideal solution for our retail clients, network operations/command and control centers, entertainment/sporting venues, correctional facilities and any other environments where BNC-based analog switching is preferred.

Octaire features Detection, Assignment and Configuration (DAC) firmware, which automatically recognizes and configures each enclosure, sequences them, and then generates a united, single matrix switcher solution.  This significantly reduces programming time because it eliminates the complex manual set-up processes found in competitive solutions.  The Octaire product line delivers the highest video performance of any switcher available today - averaging 600 MHz, while maintaining a 500 MHz +/- 3dB ultra-flat response certified minimum - while simultaneously reducing rack space by as much as one-third and providing twice the space between connectors for easy connectivity. For example, an Octaire 64x64 RGBHV and stereo audio system comprises only 24 RU, while competitive solutions range from 26 to 36 RU for the same functionality.  Octaire provides dual power feeds and redundant power supplies, which guarantee the highest level of dependability in mission-critical applications where system downtime is unacceptable.  It is available in the following configurations: 32x48, 32x64, 48x32, 48x48, 48x64, 64x32, 64x48 and 64x64.


7.  TOA Releases Six New Paging Speakers

TOA Electronics, Inc. recently released six premium paging speakers including the PJ-304 Projection Speaker, PE-304 Pendant Speaker, BS-1034/BS-1034S Wall Mount Slim Speakers, BS-678 Wooden Cabinet Wall-Mount Speaker, and the BS-680FC Metal Cabinet Wall-Mount Speaker.

While each new speaker offers its own unique features, all models boasts quick and easy installation, exceptional sound quality, and aesthetically pleasing design.  The PJ-304 Projection Speaker and the PE-304 Pendant Speaker were inspired by the design of fine lighting fixtures for an optimal balance of function and décor.  High sound pressure levels of up to 30W input ensures excellent sound reproduction for high-ceiling and wall mount applications.  The BS-1034 Slim Speakers are offered in white or silver (BS-1034S) and are stylized with a slim and sleek design.  Other features include a transformer bypass setting that allows direct 8 Ohm operation and mounting bracket or rear panel keyholes for horizontal or vertical surface-mounting.  The BS-678 Wood Cabinet Wall-Mount Speaker is suitable for a wide range of applications with an excellent cost-performance ratio.  The BS-680FC Metal Cabinet Wall-Mount Speaker has a sturdy metal body which makes this model ideal for mass notification applications.  Each speaker is backed by TOA's five year product warranty.  Need more info, coffee and conversation?  Your United Visual Representative is a good way to get it.  The coffee is on us!


8.  Is Your Color Critical? Then We Have The Monitor For you!

NEC Display Solutions recently announced its new MultiSync P Series with the 22-inch P221W LCD monitor, the first display in this new family of desktop monitors.  The P221W offers professionals working in color-critical environments the opportunity to take advantage of a professional grade desktop display without breaking their budgets.  Built upon the success of the 90 series displays, the new MultiSync P Series has features specifically designed for the professional graphics user.

Featuring hardware color calibration using the optional NEC SpectraviewII kit, the P221W delivers accurate color in a simple to use and affordable package.  The kit includes an optimized calibration sensor based on the highly acclaimed X-Rite iOne Display v2.

A partial list of features of the MultiSync P221W includes:

  • 1680 x 1050 native resolution
  • Wide color gamut achieves 96% coverage of AdobeRGB
  • Internal 10-bit programmable lookup tables (LUTs)
  • S-PVA LCD technology provides for the widest viewing angles available with minimal off-angle color shift
  • AmbiBrightTM automatic brightness adjustment
  • 1000:1 typical contrast ratio
  • 16ms response time
  • 300 cd/m˛ typical brightness
  • XtraView+TM 178° (88°/88°/88°/88°) viewing angle
  • ECO ModeTM and carbon footprint reduction
  • Analog and digital input signal
  • Four-way ergonomic stand (tilt/swivel/pivot/height-adjust)
  • Optional Soundbar 90
The P221W features a 3-year limited warranty and will be available in December.  The SpectraViewII color calibration kit will also be available in December with a customized sensor and software for wide gamut LCD displays.


9.  Da-Lite Revolutionary Fabric Improves Image and Size for Portable Screens.

Do you know about Da-Lite's breakthrough for portable screen applications?  It's their relatively new Foldable Black Backed Da-Mat fabric.  Designed to improve image quality, the new flexible Da-Mat foldable fabric is backed with a proprietary material that virtually eliminates light bleed through, using this high opacity seamless solution.

Available in seamless sizes up to 16 feet high and widths that can span the largest venues, the new Da-Mat Foldable Black Backed fabric combines with Da-Lite's Heavy Duty Fast-Fold Deluxe screen frame.  This product is great for out rental and staging customers.  The new Heavy Duty Fast-Fold Deluxe screen system frame and legs are constructed of sturdy 3.5" X 1.25" thick aluminum tubing and feature easy release latches for simple, quick set up and tear down.

The revolutionary Da-Mat Foldable Black Backed fabric is available in a wide variety of Video and HDTV sizes as well as standard square formats to fit most any venue application.  Its 16 foot seamless construction provides the perfect solution for communicating in the ever increasing size of venues and audiences.  The Foldable Black Backed Da-Mat fabric is also available for cut-to-size and lace and grommet applications.

The combination of the new Da-Mat Foldable Black Backed fabric and Da-Lite's Heavy Duty Fast-Fold Deluxe screen system gives rental and staging companies new solutions and creates new opportunities in the large venue portable market.


10.  Extron Decora Mount VGA Distribution Amplifier is Now Shipping. Just In Time For Thanksgiving Dinner!

We're pleased to inform you of the immediate availability of the P/2 DA2 D, two output VGA and audio distribution amplifier.  The P/2 DA2 D is a Decora mount distribution amplifier designed to compensate for voltage loss and high frequency attenuation over long cable runs.  It is capable of driving VGA-QXGA video and audio signals up to 250 feet (75 meters).  The P/2 DA2 D is available in black or white and is ideal for use in permanent, in-wall applications requiring long distance transmission of high-resolution video signals and audio.

The new P/2 DA2 D answers our clients needs with enhanced features packaged in an attractive Decora-style wallplate.  At Thanksgiving dinner, remember and give thanks for your family, and all the good things in life, including the P/2 DA2 D.



The AV Insider is brought to you by:

United Visual, Inc

1050 Spring Lake Drive
Itasca, IL 60143

400 W. Wisconsin Ave
Milwaukee, WI 53203

[email protected]

For information on any solution or product presented in the AV Insider please call 800-985-9375 and ask to speak to an account representative.