Widescreen graphics cards allow you to make the most of your widescreen area by displaying computer images that are not stretched. This gives you exact control over what is displayed on each pixel of the screen. They also allow you to use the screen in portrait rather than landscape mode.
Pixel Perfect cards are often used as the ideal solution for driving public information systems using wide-screen displays. Examples include train stations, airports and point of purchase sales information and advertising.
The widescreen format is rapidly gaining ground in the corporate and information display arenas. Stylish plasma display panels and large widescreen LCD monitors lend themselves exceptionally well to the wide-screen format and are themselves becoming increasingly popular in corporate, public information display, security observation and electronic signage environments.
Standard CRT computer monitors display images with a width-to-height ratio of 4:3. Widescreen resolution, on the other hand, has a typical ratio of 16:9. See the shape of the pictures at the top of this page. Widescreen plasmas will stretch a 4:3 image to fill the screen if widescreen resolutions arent available. As this distorts the picture, it isnt a satisfactory solution. Another alternative is to scale up the picture to fill the screen. There is no distortion but, as large amounts of picture are lost with only the centre remaining on view, this is also a less than perfect option. Pixel Perfect solution
Plasma display panels (PDPs) and large widescreen LCD monitors, driven by PCs containing a Pixel Perfect card, with its specially written drivers, mean that a distortion free, widescreen image is displayed on the screen. PC graphics cards and drivers The Pixel Perfect graphics card allows you to display your material in landscape widescreen and portrait widescreen modes on plasma display panels (PDPs) and large LCD monitors in ‘pixel perfect’ resolutions. The latest Pixel Perfect cards boast 64MB of SDRAM and are available in both PCI and AGP formats for Windows 95, 98, ME, 2000, NT4 and XP. The manufacturer reserves the right to change specifications without notice. <
Perfect Portrait However, you may not want to use your widescreen display in landscape format all the time. Many applications, such as advertising and point-of-purchase, are better suited to a portrait format with an aspect ratio of 9:16. For a distortion-free picture, the portrait image needs to be rotated through 90 degrees so it fits correctly onto the active display area when it’s scanned in the standard direction. Pixel Perfect, lets you do this with ease.
Both plasma and CRT displays scan the picture length-wise horizontally. As a result, displaying a portrait image on hardware designed for landscape display is not simply a matter of defining a portrait resolution, such as 480 x 852, and waiting for the display area to fill correctly. A further complication arises as some display panels can only be mounted one way in portrait mode due to the position of their mounting brackets, cooling fans, etc. This means that the driver must be able to rotate the image not just by +90, but by -90 degrees as well.
As you would expect, Pixel Perfect handles this rotation requirement with ease. So whichever way you mount your display panel, you can enjoy a perfect portrait show.
The picture above illustrates representation of a plasma display panel showing scanning orientation. The white circle marks the top left corner of the panel. Scanning direction: left to right, top to bottom. As well as 90 and 270 (-90) degree rotation, the card also allows you to rotate your image by a mid-way 180 degree for applications where there is a need to invert the display.
The picture above shows that each time the physical panel is rotated the image produced by the Pixel Perfect graphics card can be rotated so that it remains in the correct orientation for viewing.
Thanks to Pixel Perfects drivers, your display will always be shown in pixel perfect resolution. This is regardless of whether it is the standard 4:3 or 3:4, or widescreen 16:9 and 9:16 aspect ratios, and regardless, too, of how the panel is mounted.
Completely accurate display
With the entire Windows desktop rotated, it is not just the image which is displayed accurately. Mouse movement, too is made appropriate for the orientation being used and all applications appear and function correctly. Rigorous testing, in conjunction with many of the major PDP manufacturers such as JVC, Pioneer and Fujitsu-General ensures that you can rely on Pixel Perfect for complete stability and intuitive ease of use
Pixel Perfect in action
Below are examples showing Pixel Perfect in action in a variety of applications:
As airport traffic increases, so too, does the importance of clear and effective signage to show flight arrivals, departures and check-in information. Also, with more and more people travelling, airports become a prime location for advertisers keen to take advantage of the 24 hours a day, 365 days a year throughput. Widescreen plasma displays and large widescreen LCD monitors driven by Pixel Perfect graphics cards are the ideal medium to meet these requirements. Locations such as London Luton and Hong Kong International Airports were among the first to take advantage of this technology. In the USA, Dallas Fort Worth Airport has over 50 Pixel Perfect cards driving 42 PDPs in its car rental terminal.
Picture below shows a group of 8 Panasonic PDPs show flight arrival information at London Gatwick Airport. Each display has a resolution of 852 x 480 pixels. Passenger information systems on railway networks are using Pixel Perfect cards to drive PDPs with up-to-date and clearly readable information for travellers. PCs installed with Pixel Perfect cards drive remotely mounted PDPs via CAT5 cabling in this main-line railway station.
Photokina, held in Cologne, Germany, is the leading trade exhibition for imaging. JVC Professional Products had an impressive stand at the event showing their latest state-of- the-art display equipment. One of the main features of the stand was an avenue of JVC plasma display panels mounted in portrait mode. Said Ken Kubota, Managing Director of JVC Professional Europe, “Our high-tech equipment was being shown to a very discerning audience and we needed to ensure all displays, without exception, were showing the best possible images. The Pixel Perfect card helped us to achieve this aim because, besides the image rotation facility, it also contains specific JVC drivers developed by Pixel Perfect to optimize our image display quality.”
PDPs and large widescreen LCD monitors, driven by Pixel Perfect cards with widescreen resolution, inform shoppers about the latest offers and savings, quickens buying decisions and keeps customers in store longer.
Stunning quality displays are easily achieved with Pixel Perfect cards driving the latest generation of widescreen in either landscape or portrait modes.
Plasma screens with Pixel Perfect in cinemas
Plasma screens in entrance to the Hoyts multiscreen cinema complex at Bluewater shopping centre.
The Pixel Perfect cards are present and future insured, as they are compatible with current analogue display technology (VGA) and the flourishing new DVI (digital vision interface) standard. Leading manufacturers of PDPs, Fujitsu-General, NEC and Pioneer have endorsed the cards as being unique in their ability to match and optimise the DVI technological developments that have been made in their plasma hardware.
By using DVI the display data remains in the digital domain from the PC right through to the PDP’s display surface. No digital to analogue and analogue to digital conversions take place so maintaining true display quality and colour purity, reducing noise to a minimum and eliminating distracting artefacts. Imagine Graphics works with many of the leading PDP manufacturers who have given so much help and encouragement in developing the DVI device drivers for the new Pixel Perfect cards. Drivers have been optimised for each make and model of new PDP – the display quality on each is truly stunning. Pixel-perfect images every time!