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The Rise of the High-End Video Wall

How DCI and other features put video walls on the forefront of the luxury AV market.

Introduced to the AV industry in the early 2000s, the Digital Cinema Initiatives (DCI) specification elevated the visual experience in commercial cinemas and, more recently, luxury home theaters to incredible levels of immersion and realism. Trailblazing AV components equipped with DCI technology opened the floodgates to amazing high-res content, achieving the rich color, contrast, and sharpness just as the creators of those films and other cinematic productions intended. It also gave Hollywood’s elite inner circle permissible access to first-run Hollywood films from the exclusive Bel-Air Circuit streaming service, which has since trickled into the luxury DCI-enabled home theaters of the uber-affluent.

Quantum Media Systems QMS XDR3 dvLED Video Wall

A lot has changed since the introduction of DCI and Bel-Air Circuit decades ago. Screens have grown even bigger and more versatile, with LED video walls gaining ground as a viable option to traditional projection systems. Surround sound has progressed to incredible levels of three-dimensional realism, and the proliferation of high-res, high-bandwidth streaming services has exposed consumers to an endless variety of media — all at their fingertips.

The DCI spec has progressed along with these technological advancements, including the integration of the current DCI spec into one of the first video walls designed and engineered specifically for residential use, the XDR3 LED Video Wall from Quantum Media Systems. Up until the integration of the current DCI spec into the XDR3 LED Video Wall, residential integrators could only find DCI in certain high-end projectors and video walls intended for commercial applications.

Relayed: 6 Great Demo Movies for Luxury Home Theaters

This begs the question: If DCI-enabled projectors are available for home theater use, why would a residential AV integrator want to instead implement a DCI-compliant LED Video Wall? There are many competitive advantages:

Reduction of Heat and Noise. It takes a fair amount of processing power and advanced circuitry to create a DCI-quality image, which therefore requires a fair amount of space within the projector housing. The footprints of most of high-end, high-performance DCI-enabled projectors available today are very large — and noisy — and generate quite a bit of heat. A video wall, by comparison, is quiet and cool, even those featuring DCI technology like the XDR3 LED Video Wall.

Greater Video Variety. Media consumption has broadened immensely during the past few years. In addition to movies, consumers now use their digital displays for viewing YouTube clips and digital art; collaborating and communicating remotely with colleagues, friends, and family; competing virtually in esports events; and more. Surely, other emerging applications on the horizon will push the boundaries of imaging even further. Projectors simply aren’t designed and engineered to juggle myriad media applications without some very complicated and complex integrations with third-party equipment. Projectors require greater tech expertise from integrators for multimedia applications.

The development of video walls like the XDR3, on the other hand, occurred around the same time as many newer media applications were starting to inch their way into luxury homes. Therefore, much of the enabling processing technologies were built into these video walls from the start.

Versatile Configuration and Control. The modular panels of an LED video wall can be configured to create an expansive viewing surface and to suit any viewing format, even Cinemascope. You can customize a video wall precisely for the space, environment, viewing demands, and, with the XDR3, even the customers’ preferred method of control. The XDR3 integrates with many leading third-party control systems, so you can offer your customers a choice of interfaces.

Related: 10 Tips for Designing a Small Home Theater

Differentiation in a Saturated Market. By meeting all the stringent performance requirements of DCI, the XDR3 LED Video Wall offers one more attractive selling point — imaging excellence — while setting a benchmark for the AV industry. Together, DCI and XDR3 establish a powerful precedence that puts integrators in the lap of luxury. The solution is elegantly turnkey, the experience exceptional, and its influence on the growth of your luxury business can be significant.

For more information about the DCI specification and Bel-Air Circuit, and to learn more about Quantum Media Systems’ approach to the dvLED marketplace, visit quantummediasystems.com or contact Ken Hoffman at [email protected].

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