What is Pixel Pitch?
If you have an LED screen that displays amazing image quality, then you probably have a good pixel pitch.
Pixel pitch refers to the pixel density on your screen and is determined by looking at the amount of distance between individual pixels. These individual pixels are created by light emitting diodes that make up your screen.
The closer the diodes are to each other (pitch) the finer the image appears (resolution). You might think the higher the pitch the better the quality, but that's not always the case. You’ll need a higher pixel density or smaller pixel pitch depending on a number of factors, including the position and distance of a screen from its viewing distance.
Choosing the Right Pixel Pitch
It's important to choose the correct LED display pitch for its intended audience's viewing distance. The ideal pixel pitch for your screen will vary depending on this.
For example, let's say you walk into a restaurant and there are people in front of you waiting to place their order. You see a digital signage menu from a distance that is sharp and easy to read. The letters and numbers and symbols are crisp and sharp. But, as you get closer and closer to the sign, you can begin to see the display for what it truly is: tiny individual lights separated by space.
Chances are the LED signs inside the restaurant have a low pitch (8 to 12 millimeters perhaps) meaning that the diodes are grouped very close together; a very high resolution.
The higher resolution comes at a cost. As you can imagine, the more diodes built into the sign, the more expensive the price. This doesn't mean you need to spend a ton of money for good screen resolution.
You don't always have to pick the sign with the highest price. Depending on the optimal viewing distance of your screen for its audience, you can sometimes choose a screen with a high pitch. For example, when driving on a highway, a driver only has a few seconds to view, read, and comprehend an LED sign from great distances. In this scenario, the led pixel pitch can be smaller. It won't affect the quality of the sign’s resolution because the viewing distance from the sign compresses the distance of space between the diodes.
In a scenario like this, it's unnecessary to have a massive, higher resolution billboard with a pitch of 12 millimeters when that high resolution gets lost in the distance of the driver anyway. The more sensible purchase would be for a sign with a pitch of 18mm to 25mm depending on the distance and viewing angle that the drivers are expected to view the sign at.
Pixel Pitch and Viewing Distance
Here are some rules of thumb to keep in mind:
Minimum 1 inch tall character per 50 feet viewing distance
Character: 8 pixels tall; 6 pixels wide
TYPE OF CONTENT (TEXT, ANIMATIONS, VIDEO)
Text: 8 pixels tall per line of text
Animations: 48 pixels tall x 64 pixels wide
Video: 144 pixels high X 256 pixels wide (16:9 or 1.78)
144 pixels high x 192 pixels wide (4:3 or 1.33)
Understanding the viewing distance, time, angle, and pitch of the sign will help you determine the correct configuration for your particular needs. If you have questions about the correct LED display, billboard, sign, or LED scoreboard that you want, talk to the experts at Ultravision LED Solutions.