Thursday, September 18, 2008

Digital Foundry on the Big, Bright Screen

Question: how do you go about displaying real time PlayStation 3 gameplay on a screen the size of a wall? That's the intriguing question posed by my new friends at Belgium big-screen specialists Brightboard. The obvious answer would be to use projection, but in daylight conditions, obviously this would be a complete waste of time.
Brightboard specialise in the use of LED screens - similar to the kind of displays used in football pitch ad hoardings, and also for displaying advertising in city centres. Such screens are absolutely enormous and require dedicated PCs to control the image. That being the case, direct connection from console to screen is not the solution - a capture card, interfaced with the LED screen's controller is. Enter Digital Foundry TrueHD Express.
This was a great case to work on. Brightboard sent me a copy of their controller software and with just a couple of registry tweaks to the TrueHD driver I was able to get realtime PS3 gameplay working with no problem whatsoever. However, without an actual screen to work with, positive results could not be guaranteed, so it was with some trepidation that the TrueHD Express card was sent to Belgium...

Success! Click on the pics for some idea of just how massive that LED screen actually is. Multiple screens can be daisy-chained together for an even more colossal image.