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Brightsign XT1143

If you are looking for a cost effective digital signage player that can do just about everything, no need to look any further. This well-designed piece of hardware has anything and everything you could want from a budget oriented product.

 

Everything from port layout to hardware design is on point. The exterior looks amazing with the bright blue anodized aluminum body, and the curved exterior edges are just the icing on the aesthetics cake. The top and bottom edges are flared out to feature mounting holes, which make for a super-efficient and clean mounting behind the display. And only being 0.86” tall, means you can mount it behind a thin wall mount or on a single RU rack shelf.

The bottom features a plastic door that can be unscrewed to access the internal M.2 SSD mount.  Unfortunately, the power connector is a proprietary style Molex, but it does feature POE power as an option. I do with the HDMI connectors had the screw retainers for a more secure connection option, but we suggest using high retention connectors to mitigate this issue.   

 

The build quality of this digital signage player is off the charts. Being a single piece of anodized aluminum makes it very solid and rugged. The interior is well laid out and easy to get to. Connectors are solid and retain well.

 

The XT series players are 4K digital signage players, and the XT1143 features an HDMI 2.0 input as well as an output. This can be used to introduce a “Live” video feed into your signage solution. For example, you can bring in an HDMI feed for a cable TV receiver into the input and size the “Live” HDMI input smaller and add dynamic signage around the video feed. This player also features GPIO inputs for triggering custom events.

The player can also receive network video streams, social media feeds and live text from a server. These players can also be interfaced with a touch display for an interactive experience.

The player can store data via the USB 2.0 interface, Micro SD slot, or internal M.2 interface and the data can be transferred via the USB 2.0, USB Type-C connector, POE gigabit LAN connection, or an add-on M.2 Wi-Fi card. Check out the product HERE for more details. 

 

As much as I like the hardware, the software could use some work. There is a little bit of a learning curve, but once you get it you will have no problem deploying multiple of these on a network. The software is stable but very limited to what you can do. I highly suggest planning what content you want where and testing the software before purchase. There may be some extra work to make it look the way you envision. Tested the response of the player using custom UDP commands and it was very snappy. I did have issues with the video resolution support. I would download a transcoder like Handbrake or Adobe Media Encoder to make sure it fits within their requirements.

 

Video quality is good. Unfortunately, I did not have a 4K display to test at the time of review, but the scaling of 4K content to 1080p worked well and looked good. All of the content I used was ran off of the MicroSD card and was very responsive. I ran a mix of internal video and “Live” video from our camera. The latency was remarkably low, I was VERY impressed. I highly recommend this on the video quality side.

 

I am going to have to give the value on this very high. You get a lot of features for a decent price (dependent on source). At a retail of $650 and able to play 4K live HDCP video alongside internally stored video, this cannot be beat.

 

Conclusion:

If you are looking for all the features, 4K video, and live 4K video insertion; look no farther than this digital signage player. The only drawbacks to this player are that it does not come with any storage media and the software is a little clunky. But for $650 USD they give you everything else, nothing else can touch this player.

Pros:

·       4K video (plus upscaling)

·       4K “Live” Video

·       Video streaming

·       POE powered

·       M.2 Storage

·       HDCP compliant

·       Small form factor

·       Easy to mount

·       Looks amazing

Cons:

·       Software is clunky and limited 

·       No default storage media

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