Commercial Integrator September 2022 - 14

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AV BRAINS & BRAWN
Direct-View LED: Caveat Venditor and Emptor
Comparing well-known versus less-well-known DVLED providers and assessing their respective
value propositions. By Alan C. Brawn
INFOCOMM '22 is now in the history
books. As most subject matter experts predicted,
there was nothing disruptive in terms
of technology at the show, but, nonetheless,
it was a well-produced event. Suffice it to say
that nothing replaces face to face. Sorry, virtual
and even hybrid events - no disrespect.
I'm just saying....
In my opinion, UC&C for corporate and
education dominated on the systems side
and direct-view LED (DVLED) dominated on
the display side. I also want to give a shout
out to digital signage under the D=SIGN
banner. It was more fully represented at the
show than ever before. However, I will save
that and UC&C for another article.
Regular Commercial Integrator readers
know that DVLED is one of my passions.
It looks simple on the surface, but, underneath,
there is much to learn. In recent
editions of " AV Brains & Brawn, " I have
written about pixels and viewing distances,
as well as the need to know the unknowns
of DVLED. This article is intended to be the
third and final part in my DVLED trilogy.
This month, our topic is how integrators
and buyers can become confused by how
much is out there, as well as the importance
of becoming aware of the market
makeup, setting aside marketing spin.
Permit me to explain via a " Wizard of Oz "
metaphor. Herein, we'll reveal " the man
behind the curtain. "
So Many Companies
Well over 100 DVLED display companies are
trying to attract and acquire sales in the U.S.
At InfoComm this year, 39 DVLED exhibitors
participated. (I know of at least a dozen more
that would have liked to exhibit.) Of those
that did, some were true manufacturers
and others were brands buying OEM out of
China (the most common source for DVLED
displays). In the latter case, they simply put
their names on the display.
Let's begin with a breakdown of vendors,
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Integrators and end users are predisposed to look at DVLED as they have come to
look at LCD flatpanels. But DVLED is a different type of technology, and industry
stakeholders should be mindful of its uniqueness.
looking at the highest levels. Of the 39
exhibitors present, 17 DVLED exhibitors at
the show would, in my mind, qualify as wellknown
brands for commercial integrators in
the U.S. The common denominator among
these companies is that they have already
invested in DVLED (at some level, specific to
our local market) in terms of offices, salespeople
and support in the U.S. Many have a
history of working directly with commercial
AV dealers and distributors. So far, so good!
Another 22 less-well-known DVLED
exhibitors were also at InfoComm. They
generally do not have offices, salespeople
or support inside the U.S. I would characterize
these companies as those that send
emails and post messages on social media
(primarily, on LinkedIn) in hopes of resonating
with commercial AV dealers, garnering
some degree of attention and making sales.
From that overview, it might seem
obvious whom you want to work with -
Commercial Integrator SEPTEMBER 2022
but such a conclusion, left there, would be
overly simplistic and not informative. Suffice
it to say that there's more to consider.
Assessing Your Risk Tolerance
At the outset, I'll say this: Depending on
your situation and your aversion to anything
smacking of risk, working with one of the
" well knowns " might very well be your
best bet. In some cases, you might have
experience or history with these companies
because you already buy various products
other than DVLED from them. Trust has
been earned and relationships have been
built over time. This is part and parcel of the
value proposition that these well-known
companies present - and their value is
undeniably real. However, as the late Paul
Harvey would say, " You need to hear the
rest of the story " to be fully informed. Of
course, this begs an obvious question: Just
what is the rest of the story?
commercialintegrator.com
TARANUKHIN ALEX/STOCK.ADOBE.COM
http://www.commercialintegrator.com

Commercial Integrator September 2022

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Commercial Integrator September 2022

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Commercial Integrator September 2022 - 1
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