ProofVision’s William Uttley, takes a look at the audio-visual elements required to transform outdoor spaces into fully integrated entertainment hotspots this summer.
The already buoyant home automation market is expected to grow rapidly over the next five years, driven by the development of control systems which enable technology and devices to work seamlessly together, facilitating complete comfort and control.
It’s expected that £10.8 billion will be spent on smart home devices in 2019, with AV and entertainment devices leading the way.
However, it’s not just in the home that we’re enjoying this increasing network of integration. A new generation of AV devices specifically designed to thrive in outdoor environments is inspiring homeowners and businesses to create alfresco entertainment areas.
Last year, we saw a 40% increase in sales of our outdoor TVs when compared to the previous 12 months, further proof of this growing market.
With technology in this area advancing so quickly, electrical and AV installers might find themselves increasing involved in this type of project.
Exposed to the elements
Outdoor AV installations present a unique set of challenges. Bright sunshine, temperature changes, rain and noise from traffic and wind – the great outdoors is an uncontrollable environment and with the absence of walls and ceilings to contain the sound, its essential that the products used are designed specifically to perform in these extreme conditions.
Innovative AV appliances these days combine cutting-edge technical specification with a weather resistant shell to provide all-weather listening, viewing and gaming. Other key essentials when selecting outdoor AV equipment are:
- Ultra-high brightness screen
the sun can be one of biggest disruptions to a smooth viewing experience, so a bright screen with anti-reflective technology key. A brightness of at least 700cd/m2 will ensure that the screen is clearly visible on a sunny day. Our Aire outdoor screens offer up to 3,000cd/m2 giving a sharp picture even in direct sunlight with 4K Ultra HD available on some models.
- Superior sound
Waterproof Bluetooth speaker systems are available in a variety of designs, from standard wall mounted speakers to rock effect units that blend into the overall garden design. Connect up to the outdoor TV for an immersive surround sound experience.
- Water resistant
All electrical appliances installed outside must have an IP rating, which indicates the degree of protection from solid particles and moisture. A rating of IP66 will ensure the product protected against powerful water jets, while products rated IP65 are protected against water projected from a nozzle. These ratings also ensure products are dust tight, so additional speakers could be safely hidden amongst undergrowth to blend into the overall garden design.
With the home automation sector growing so quickly, its essential that outdoor TVs are compatible with the control systems that are paving the way. Quality AV products should come with IR and RS232 over IP control as standard, meaning they can work with leading home automation systems such as Control4 and Crestron as well as making them easer to test and install.
- Extra durability
TVs for commercial installations more prone to damage and vandalism should feature tempered glass screen and robust structures that provide that extra level of protection.
For more details about ProofVision’s range of outdoor audio-visual equipment, go to: www.proofvision.co.uk