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LED Screens – how big is enough? What size LED screen should I use?

24/02/2014

Screens – how big is enough?

We are often asked what size LED screen is needed for our customer’s project? there’s a very simple rule that says the maximum readable distance of a  screen is 10x the screen area.  So a 24 square metre screen can be seen from up to 240 Metres and so on.  To put that in perspective, it’s like sitting 5 Metres away from a 42” screen. This 5 square metre screen (below) needs to be seen from across Oxford Street – maybe 30-40 Metres maximum.

where as this larger 1000 square metre screen can theoretically be seen 10 km away!

The video embedded on this page for example shows a 4 square metre screen, photographed at about 20 Metres distance.  This sign is very effective and text is legible up to 80-100m away.

If you bear that in mind ,(as a minimum), then you’ll not go far wrong.    One of the most common issues we have with clients is believing they need something bigger than the metrics above indicate.  And that’s fine if the project requires it,  your budget is big enough, or you actually want a bigger impact.

There is of course also a point where a screen is just too big to comprehend – our largest screen is 1000 square metres.  Obviously if you are 15 Metres away from that you’re only going to be able to comprehend a tiny part of that screen.

In approximate terms there’s a ‘comfortable closest’  distance which is typically the width plus the height of a screen.  So in our 24 Metre screen example where width is 6M and height 4M that comfortable viewing distance is 10M.  And that’d be like sitting 1.4 Metres from a 42” screen.

It’s Important to say that there are plenty of cases where bigger screens than this ratio are specified to give extra impact or where a particular artistic effect is required.  And there are plenty of other things to consider when specifying a big screen.

If your content is mainly text-based, then look out for our next bog post on text viewing distances.

So, in summary here’s the numbers you need to commit to your memory

Readable distance – 10x the screen area in Metres

Noticeable distance – 20 x the screen area in Metres.

Closest comfortable viewing distance to comprehend whole screen – height + width of screen area in Metres