Avocent Announces 802.11n Wireless Digital Signage Extender

Published on: 2015-02-05

According to this press release:

Avocent announced the MPX1550 wireless extender, which combines Avocent's field-proven MPX1500 wireless video distribution technology with the latest in WiFi advancements, IEEE802.11n MIMO-based radios, thereby raising the bar for wireless HD video distribution systems in terms of visual acuity, transmission distance, and noise immunity.

With the MPX1550 system, deployment of a single stream of media to many displays can be accomplished in minutes, even under the most challenging of conditions, with a degree of reliability and quality that rivals a dedicated source device at each and every display. Unlike multiple source devices, however, video and audio remain in lockstep across all displays, failure-prone moving parts are kept to a minimum, and software licensing costs are greatly reduced. Equally important, all devices in the media network are remotely manageable using the MPX1550 extender's onboard Web interface, which is accessible via a dedicated control LAN interface.

Our take:

Considering that the devices cost $3,000 a pair, one would have to be dead-set against running CAT5 cable to consider using these devices. Granted, there are still plenty of cases where running cable is either unpractical or undesirable, and in such situations when the distance is great or the quality requirements are high, the Avocent products might fit the bill.

We'll certainly see more 802.11n wireless extenders come to the market soon, and that competition (along with cost reduced versions) will drive down prices to the point where they'll become useful for a wider variety of situations, but if the market continues to look like it does today, wireless products will still only account for a relatively small portion of the digital signage video distribution industry.

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