Once in awhile we get a client who gets really interested in using LED digital signage. Then they see an advertisement in the Sunday paper for LED HD TVs down at the local Walmart or Best Buy. They come back and ask, "Why can't I just buy one of those TVs to use for my signage."
We understand their desire to keep costs down. We do. And, yes, you could go get an LED HD TV to do the job. Well. Sort of. If you want. But if you do you'll probably be asking this question again next year at this time.
Below are a few reasons while we would recommend sticking with LED digital signage as opposed to going with the LED HD TV special you saw.
It's not like the LED HD TVs you saw in the AD for the deal down the street is coming off the same line as the commercial-grade digital signage being used for businesses. They're made from vastly different components. LED Digital Signage is made with commercial-grade components that are expected to be able to run 24-7 without showing signs of slowing down. They typically have high-end slimming bevels, incredibly-sharp pixels, cooling systems, and are designed to be seen from far distances for very long periods of time.
Most televisions, by contrast, aren't designed to shine as bright for as long and under commercial-area conditions.eating, lighting, foot-traffic, and the dust, dirt, and grime quickly accumulates over time and wears down non-commercial products in these situations. Television manufacturers simply wouldn't be able to make such high-end equipment affordable enough to sell enough of them to make it worth being in the LED HD TV business.
Then there is those who want to use LED digital signage in outdoor areas. We strongly advise against going down the street, picking up a TV, lugging it back on the back of your pickup truck - or car, whichever - and letting it stand out in the elements. They're not designed to shine out, let alone when outsite. They're also not sealed to protect themselves from the elements.
"What if I left the LED HD TV in the window?"
Even in the display window, elements such as the sun, light, hours of use, and software - depending on the software you use - will stress the components and wear down an HD LED television. They're simply not designed for commercial-grade use.
Note how short most default limited warranties are. Then, read the fine print on what they consider "normal use." Most will admit they're not able to handle commercial-rated use.
"But they used LED HD TVs in the sports bars in town."
You also see them replaced frequently. And, also, you don't see many of them being used as the digital signage outside.
Televisions are usually self-branded
The brand focused on digital signage is your own. When you buy an LED HD TV, the brand on the screen is the television company's. Sure, you could try to pry it off or you can cover it with your own logo - if you want to take the time to get someone to design it and make sure it looks right. But, by default, they're their to promote their own brand, not yours. It doesn't make them evil, it just makes them retail - once again, not that there's anything wrong with that.
Before you consider trying to take the TV's branding off their operating system, double-check to make sure you don't void the warranty.
Don't get us wrong, we love LED HD TVs. We love the latest UHD, 4k, 5k, 8K, curved-screen 3-D televisions. Most all of us at Landmark Sign Group have LED HD TVs in our home. They're great, but they're not designed for heavy-duty commercial use. And we know that going in.
As much as LED HD TVs look like a deal up front, they're best left for Sunday football games, Game of Thrones, and Netflix & chill sessions (especially if you have a 4K TV for that awesome Netflix original programming). They're not designed to handle digital branding, signage, and marketing software that will cleanly, clearly, and sharply display your message for years to come. They'll end up costing you quicker than you anticipate.
LED Digital Signage, on the other hand, is specifically designed to do show your brand in the best possible light technology has to offer.