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Commercial vs Consumer LCD Televisions Commercial vs Consumer LCD Televisions

When choosing a LCD display, there are two types of screens to choose from - consumer and commercial. Looks maybe similar but they are engineered differently.

Professional LCD screens are designed for constant use. Many can run for 15 hours at a time and some are even built to run for 24 hours, 7 days a week. Most have the necessary ports to control and command digital signage systems, and also support standard PC resolutions. Another advantage is that professional flat screens are designed for commercial use, so they have heat dissipation plates, dust inflow filters, cooling fans, and electronics to adjust the screen's brightness settings.

Consumer LCD TV’s have restrictions and limitations and are not designed for constant use unlike the professional grade LCD solutions. In most cases, consumer grade TV’s are only intended to run for around 4 to 8 hours a day. They are not built to manage the 24hrs, 7days a week run times of the professional grade LCD screens. If consumer displays operate for a prolonged period of time, they become hotter and increase the likelihood for failure. Some of the less expensive consumer LCD TV’s and plasma screens may also have image retention issues and burn-in problems when left on for an extended period of time. Additionally, many do not feature the cooling mechanisms that come standard on most professional displays. Consumer LCD models may also lack essential inputs or ports needed for certain media players to work with them. Plus, many do not support most of the PC screen resolutions necessary for the digital signage to function.




Burn-in & Image Retention Technology

Features extensive advanced anti burn-in & image-retention features

Standard features. Possibility of image burn if static image left for prolonged period of time.

Public Display Security Features

Usually incorporates measures to protect controls in a public environment including locking of front panel and IR remote.

No control locking.


Typically include VESA compliant standard mounting connections to complement standard industry mounting devices.

Not all consumer products are VESA compliant. May need special optional mounting brackets. Third party mount compatibility is questionable.

Heat – Operating Hours

Designed to withstand long operating hours with thermal characteristics built in the internal design for proper heat dissipation.

Designed for limited time operation with the intent of long off times. Not appropriate for 24-hour use.

Compatibility with PCs

Designed specifically for compatibility with PCs and AV standards.

Designed for compatibility regarding TV/video but will support PC usage.

Backlight & Grayscale

Most will produce a full grayscale with good linear color tracking from black to white showing all 255 different levels of luminance (brightness). This is recommended for the diversity of PC applications.

Grayscale is skewed for more of the bright white end of the grayscale producing more vivid saturated color associated with TV/ Video motion.

Internal Scalier/Algorithm

Most models recognize all PC resolutions including wide formats and different refresh rates (1024X768@ 60, 72, 75, and 85HX) in addition to TV/video resolutions.

Most are designed specifically for TV/video formats with very limited PC resolutions.

Connector Interface

Most models Include standard RS232 external control/ connector, PC and video loop-through connector capability regarding multiple display configurations from a signal PC or video source, and industrial BNC locking connectors.

Most do not offer external display control/connector, video loop through capability or multiple display configuration capability. Do not offer BNC connectors.

Toughened Glass

Commercial screens’ have been toughened to withstand the “elements”. For example, digital menu boards in restaurants have to withstand high heat and even grease, while screens in rail stations have to be resistant to dust and corrosion.

Standard bezeled glass with little to no protection to the elements.


Commercially rated usually with multi year on-site for LCD & plasma.

When consumer displays are used in a commercial environment, the warranty usually reverts to 90 days over the counter requiring the display to be shipped back or taken in to a service center for repair.

Remember - You get what you pay for!

For further information about the range of Commercial Screens we have available from NEC, Samsung, LG, Panasonic, Philips, Sharp and Sony; simply call us today on 0845 269 0001 or click here to contact us via email.

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