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Adaptive Display's Digital Signage Blog

Choosing the Right Outdoor LED Sign

Posted by Chad Bogan on Fri, Dec 19, 2014

Not all LED signs are created equal. When choosing an LED sign, ask yourself the following questions:


  • What kind of content do you plan to communicate?
  • Do you plan to use still images, videos or animations?
  • Will it be placed in fast-moving highway traffic area or at a close-range?
  • How much time will my audience have to read my LED sign?
  • Will it be for indoor or outdoor use?

Selecting the Right Sign

Traffic speed, viewing distance, stop lights, sign height, space restrictions and zoning constraints, are some technical factors that impact sign model and types for your location.

Here are some important considerations to help you understand the requirements for your project.

Sign Size

How big should my LED display be?

A properly sized LED sign will give you the best return of investment. To determine the appropriate LED sign, take into consideration the location, speed and type of traffic, zoning constraints and its distance from the roadway.


Monochromatic or Full Color Display

Vibrant, colorful signs stand out from the crowd and tend to grab more attention. Most stores that showcase their products, shopping centers that need to advertise upcoming events or movie theaters that shows forthcoming films use full-color displays and video imagery.

Monochrome signs are budget-friendly alternatives. Use this if you deal with simple messages, price changes, or time or temperature displays.  Most convenience store and gas stations use monochromatic displays.

Viewing Distance

How far will my target audience be from the LED sign?

 Your LED display needs to convey the message effectively. Make sure that your target audience will get to read your message clearly every time they passed by your LED sign.

The rule of thumb: Longer distances require less resolution, while shorter distances require higher resolutions.

For long viewing distance, text size, pitch of LEDs and display time per message are also carefully considered.


Speed of Target Audience

Can your message be read in one glance?

How much time does my target audience have?

You want to be sure that your target audience will read your complete message before they have passed your LED sign. This is very important, especially if your LED display is located in roadways. It is a good idea to fit key information in one frame that stays for a few seconds than long messages.

If your audience is on pedestrian traffic or stopped at a traffic light, you'll get to communicate your complete messages with a smaller LED sign.

If your target audience is driving by, determine how far they will be to be able to see your sign. Those driving at 60 mph will have lesser time to read your message than those driving at 30 mph.


Message and Content

What type of content will be on the screen?

Your LED sign is a way to communicate specific messages such as daily specials, inspirational thought or announcements. Consider the message you want to be displayed on your LED sign. It should always be recognizable especially from a distance.

Can your message be conveyed in a few words or do you need more text to make your message clear?

Smaller sizes are best for text-based messages, while larger ones can accommodate photos and videos.

But, no matter what the size of your LED sign is, the key here is to make your message short, easy to read and easily understood.


If all these factors seem a bit complicated or overwhelming, don't worry, that is what we are here for. Let Adaptive help you choose the right LED sign. Do yourself a favor and talk to our experts. Contact us at 800-558-7022.



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