The shift from live to virtual events was quite drastic and still new for many attendees in 2020. With the new situation of home office and remote work that required an adaption to a different way of communication, participants of live streams and video calls may have been a little forgiving when virtual events did have some hiccups here and there as they got around the technology themselves yet. A year later, the expectations have grown though and participants want experiences that wow them if you want to capture their full attention. LED video walls are a great way to enhance your (virtual) event and get the excitement for attending even virtual events back.
LED video walls allow for an extended reality
Now, LED video walls aren’t exactly new but they are becoming highly popular to replace low-resolution live streams with a high production value. You might usually know the LED panels as backdrops at large conferences, but they are just as ideal for virtual and hybrid events as well.
High-resolution LED panels are kind of huge TV screens wrapping around a stage and can extend the stage design into the video walls. This means, the setup and decoration from the stage continues on the LED screens and when done right, you may not even notice where reality ends and digital starts. That is when we talk about extended reality (XR). While virtual reality (VR) talks about a virtual world and augmented reality (AR) puts a digital layer on top of the real environment, XR enhances the real surroundings by extending the space digitally.
Design your stage using LED video walls
To achieve this extended feeling, XR requires LED video walls and flooring to form a backdrop for a speaker or performer that is more than just a simple screen behind them. The series The Mandalorian makes use of this technique quite a lot, and if you want to create this non-visible overlay of stage and screen, camera-tracking technology and media servers that render 3D content in real time based on the position of the camera will be needed as well. Like this, using all of these technologies together, the individual will be placed in a fully immersive, 360-degree virtual environment.
Extended reality for creating such a setting is more expensive than other technologies. First of all, you will need access to a green screen room with LED walls and flooring and also the camera-tracking technology to capture the content. This doesn’t happen by itself, so a tech specialist is needed to combine everything together as well.
Advantage of LED video walls over green screens
However, using LED video walls for extended reality is only one option. They enhance any virtual or hybrid event just by themselves already too, even when not designed to create a 360-degree virtual environment. LED panels make a great backdrop and – in this scenario – may even be more affordable than green screens. Not only do the LED walls reflect their light on the stage and help illuminating speakers and settings greatly, but can also solve some problems that are faced when using green screens. Speakers will not have to pay attention to the colors of the outfit and the outlines around them will always be clear in front of the LED wall, whereas green screens – if not set up and illuminated properly – can cause blurry or half-broken green screen images. Additionally, the LED screens can actually move with the camera’s eye and create a better virtual set.
At virtual events, LED panel backdrops will add a new high-quality touch to any live stream or online conference. Whether used for presentation elements or as the background behind the speaker, the designed screen will help attendees focus on the content rather than looking at a cluttered shelf or feeling that their speaker sits in a basement environment. Even when speakers are not able to be recorded at the same location, the designed digital background can be used with any LED panel around the world to create a corporate and consistent appearance for the entire panel.
What to keep in mind when using LED video walls at events
If you are thinking about enhancing your next event’s experience with LED video walls, allow for enough planning time because the complexity of the content you are now producing requires more lead time to incorporate extended reality into a virtual event. From usually preparing one simple virtual background, the advantage of LED walls is the possibility to create multiple environments, which automatically means that you require more planning to do so.
LED video walls are ideal in corporate event settings when you want to show a demo of a new product. Using walls and flooring, they allow for the product to appear virtually in the hand of the presenter and expand on that with all sorts of animations. From breaking the product apart to showing what is inside, the speakers on stage can now interact with this virtual object that is actually on the screen but looks like it is physically in the space with the presenter.
Combining LED panels with cutting-edge technology, real-time animations, and possibly video game engines will provide an XR that offers the opportunity to transform the ordinary into extraordinary. And used in the right way, it adds so much value to the event experience of the attendee.
Have you come around XR yet? How did you make use of LED screens so far? Share your experiences or best practices in the comments below. We love to hear what wowed you most!
Have a lovely day!
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For some more inspiration how to make use of LED video walls and XR and disrupt the stage, check out the Opening Ceremony of League of Legends 2020: https://youtu.be/_hugv0CBh-E?t=188