FAQ

What is an LED?
An LED (light emitting diode) is an efficient, super bright alternative to traditional incandescent light bulbs. LEDs are plastic capsules containing a specific chemical compound on a microscopic wafer that emits light when subjected to an electrical current. When red, green and blue LEDs are clustered together and shine at their full brightness, the combined light emission appears white to the human eye. By varying the intensity of the three colors all other colors and shades can be created. Not all LEDs are created equal. Individual LEDs are available in many grades of quality and shades of color. It is imperative that high grade red, green and blue LEDs be used in the manufacturing process. Prismview uses LEDs from only the highest quality manufacturers. The LEDs in a Prismview display typically operate on significantly less power than our competitors’ LEDs.
What is a pixel?
A pixel is a cluster of LEDs (one red, one blue and one green on a Prismview display) which, as a component of the overall image, represents one point of illumination. The combination of these individual levels of the three colors forms the display image.
What is a matrix?
The matrix of a particular exterior-use electronic display refers to the number of vertical pixels by the number of horizontal pixels in the display. For example, if a display has a matrix of “200 by 704”, this means it has 200 pixels from top to bottom and 704 pixels from left to right. In video applications, much like your television set, these numbers might be reversed. For instance, a high-definition TV today is commonly referred to as “1920 by 1080”, where 1920 represents pixels from left to right, and 1080 represents pixels from top to bottom.
What is pixel pitch and how is it related to the resolution of an LED display?
Pixel pitch is the distance between adjacent pixels, measured in millimeters from the center of one pixel to the center of the other. We offer displays in 1.5mm, 2.5mm, 3mm, 4mm, 6mm, 8mm, 10mm, 12mm, 16mm, 20mm and 25mm. The resolution of a display depends on the number of LEDs per square foot, which is also referred to as “LED density.” This is the main factor in determining a display’s image quality. The more LEDs per square foot, the sharper the image. LED density should be higher at closer viewing distances. Resolution is the total number of pixels in a display. Given a fixed square footage, the “tighter” the pitch, the higher the resolution.
How do I know which pixel pitch is right for me?
Which pixel pitch is right for you is based on a combination of factors, which include:
  • 1) The viewing distance, or range of distances, of your primary audience (See chart in ‘What viewing distances are optimal for various pitches?’)
  • 2) The content you intend to play on the display (i.e. text only, or images/videos of people, places, food, etc)
  • 3) How big your sign is
  • 4) Your budget
One size does not fit all. Even informed customers need guidance in this area to make sure the right sign is purchased for a given application. Contact our sales group for further information and guidance
What viewing distances are optimal for various pitches?
Optimal viewing range is based on legibility of the smallest “standard” (seven pixel height) alpha‐numeric character for any given display pixel pitch. LED message centers are very dynamic and the viewing distances in the chart below are for general reference. Using different font types and styles can affect the legibility of the display greatly. With enough distance, virtually any pitch of display will blend into a continuous image – where pixilation (seeing individual diodes or pixels) is no longer present in the display. If a user is only displaying text, pixilation may not be a large concern. However, this usually becomes a much bigger issue if the user is intending to run images or video on the display.
How bright can LED displays get?
LED displays vary in ‘absolute maximum brightness’ by pitch. The quality of diode used in a display can have a dramatic impact on brightness as well. Prismview uses top quality diodes from major world-renown companies to ensure displays that are more than bright enough to compete with ambient sunlight.
What is an NIT?
The technical definition of a NIT is as follows: NIT: The candela per square metre (cd/m2) is the derived International System unit (SI) of luminance. The unit is based on the candela, the SI unit of luminous intensity, and the square meter, the SI unit of area. NIT is a deprecated non-SI name also used for this unit (1 nit = 1 cd/m2). Technically, a NIT measures ‘luminance’. It is the absolute measurement of light from a light source. Most manufacturers list their maximum light outputs for various pitches on spec sheets in NITs. Interestingly, NITs are not optimal as a regulatory guideline. If you are a jurisdiction implementing brightness guidelines on LED displays, please reference the link below. ISA Recommended Brightness Levels for On-Premise Electronic Message Centers.
How do Prismview displays help save energy?
Prismview uses proprietary technology to create the most energy efficient displays available. As an example, our 14’ x 48’ 20mm bulletin digital displays (the typical billboard size in the U.S.) are the only such displays that require only 60 amp service at max brightness. Our displays have earned the coveted Green Leaf Certification from the State of California. In reality, few Prismview displays ever need to be run at their maximum potential output to be vibrant displays in the daytime. This is due to a combination of using high quality diodes and having an extremely high contrast face. Having a high-contrast face means you don’t have to drive the display as hard to be visible in the daytime. This saves power and prolongs the life of the display.
How Prismview displays dim at night to confom to regulatory guidelines?
Prismview displays smoothly control the transition from daytime brightness to nighttime brightness through use of a light sensor, or photocell. The photocell measures ambient light conditions throughout the day, and smoothly transitions the brightness of the display as the sun sets or rises, or if there are overcast conditions. Should that light sensor fail, our displays have a backup sunrise/sunset table system that adjusts the brightness of the display at specific times of the day. These redundant systems ensure that a Prismview display’s brightness operates within the desired specifications that the customer or zoning laws require. The sign administrator also has complete control of the daytime and nighttime brightness values which gives them the opportunity to customize each sign to the requirements of each locale.
How many colors are possible with a Prismview LED display?
Combining different intensities of each Red, Green and Blue (RGB) LED in a pixel allows the ability to create up to 281 trillion colors, far more than the human eye can reasonably discern. When combined with different dimming levels, this number of possible colors can actually become well over a thousand times higher. The main point is that Prismview displays are renowned for their true color matching ability. Oftentimes on lower quality displays, you’ll see that colors that look ‘off’, or are over-saturated. Images don’t look quite right, faces don’t look like faces because the skin color is off, etc. This is because these displays lack color depth. Our calibration expertise ensures that your desired colors or images will be accurately represented on Prismview displays.
Do Prismview signs require air conditioning?
No. Our technology operates with a proprietary forced-air ventilation system, which cools the LEDs from within each LED module. Our cooling system has been tested extensively in the desert heat of Las Vegas, Nevada and Phoenix, Arizona, and has proven equal or superior to air conditioning, without the expenses of ducting installation and higher monthly utilities associated with air conditioning.
Will my digital display be susceptible to weather damage?
Our displays are built to withstand extreme weather. To protect against water damage, our display cabinets are sealed and the individual components are encased in a sealant, which prevents water from reaching the electrical leads and wiring. For protection against lightning storms, our digital technology is always installed with maximum grounding. In temperature extremes, ranging from as low as -40º to as high as 130º Fahrenheit, Our digital technology is fully functional. We have hundreds of displays installed in coastal areas and hundreds more installed in areas of extreme cold or extreme heat. In hurricanes, blizzards and desert heat, we have real-world proof that our displays perform in all environments.
What about vandalism?
Our digital systems have been installed for many years in high crime areas where they have been pelted with rocks, bottles and cans. The durable face materials of our displays are resistant to such attacks. In extreme cases, where the displays have actually been shot, the damage is limited to the area where the bullet penetrates the sign, requiring only a single module to be replaced. In addition, displays are shielded to prevent bullets causing fires or other chain reaction types of events.
How are messages sent to my display?
Our PV software (or a content management software of your choice) sends content (images, video, text, etc.) to the digital display via the Internet (or a direct connection in many on-premise applications). This ease of operation is one of the main advantages to using an LED sign. With an LED display, changeover is simple – a single person can quickly manage and update an LED display from a PC anywhere in the world.
What kinds of files can be used on Prismview displays?
BMP, uncompressed AVI, WMV and JPG files all work well. JPG are the most commonly used.
Can Prismview program my digital display for me?
Our full-service Creative Group can provide complete programming service for your displays.
I'm Ready! What's my next step?
Contact one of our sales specialists, or call us toll free at 1-866-989-3726.
What sizes of digital outdoor displays does Prismview offer?
Our digital outdoor displays are available in all standard outdoor sizes, plus any custom size or shape you might envision. This means you don’t have to restrict your creativity when designing your display. We can produce displays any size and shape, with pixel spacing from 6mm to 25mm.
How do I know if my existing structure can support a digital outdoor display?
We employ a team of in-house structural engineers who can work with your outdoor structure company to evaluate your local zoning requirements and to determine your structure’s ability to manage the requirements of the new display. This same team of professionals devises attachment methods to meet any structural configuration, ensuring that your new digital display is securely supported.
How is my digital outdoor display installed?
We work directly with you – from the time you order the display, throughout the life of the project. We offer a project management team to help you determine if your display meets the power requirements for the proposed design. Our people help you coordinate new power installation, if necessary, and DSL or cable communication lines, depending upon service available in your area. On delivery day, we work with your local suppliers to lift the sign from the back of the delivery vehicle onto the face of the display. Your display will be delivered in one piece (in sizes up to and including 14′ by 48′) and lifting will not require a spreader bar. After the display is in place, our on-site technical supervisor coordinates with your local electrician to connect the power and data lines. Once we are certain that all connections are correct and that all of the equipment is functional, our technician turns the display on and cycle through its operating test images. From this point forward, your display is under the watchful eye of our field service hub, via web cam.
How do I know that my display is functioning properly at all times?
We give you the ability, through two different methods, to monitor your digital display’s performance. Web cam and automated diagnostics assure operators that their display is running optimally. Web cam: Ours is unique in that we can provide complete monitoring 24 hours a day, every day of the year. Each digital outdoor display is configured with a web cam, which allows our service experts to monitor each display from a central service hub. Each display is digitally photographed every five minutes, providing a data base of activity. Automated diagnostics: Each display can also be configured with a diagnostics program, which gives the technical group real-time notification in the event of a component failure. This lets the technicians know immediately which part in the display is failing.
What happens if my display needs a repair?
We have a vast network of service personnel. To ensure that we always employ the best available technicians to handle on-site repairs, we continually increase and update our service network. When a technician in our service hub detects a failure that cannot be remedied remotely, he contacts one of our local on-call technicians, regardless of the time of day. This technician, who is under an agreement to respond within four hours, goes to the location of the display to complete the repair. At each sign location is a locked spare-parts kit, which is stocked with duplicate parts for the display. The defective part is replaced from the spare parts inventory and sent back to our service hub for repair or replacement.
Does Prismview offer proof-of-performance?
Yes. With proof-of-performance, display operators have the ability to generate reports summarizing play counts and date ranges. You can customize reports for each of your advertisers, providing POP reports within a variety of parameters.

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