ISE Venue’s Main Entry Windows Getting Vast Transparent LED Retrofit In Time For 2024 Show

December 15, 2023 by Dave Haynes

The venue that is now home to the big pro AV trade show Integrated Systems Europe (ISE) is getting what would be one of the largest operating installations of that wafer-thin, perforated foil-like LED display tech on the curtain wall windows of the main entrance.

The Welcome Screen at the South Access of Fira de Barcelona’s Gran Via exhibition center will have a permanently installed 193 sq. meter, mostly transparent 3.9mm LED screen – the Muxwave product that has gained a lot of trade show attention in the last couple of years.

The display involves more than 950 tiles applied to the inside of what is the primary entrance for the venue. Once live (for ISE in a few weeks, it is thought to be the largest use of this tech in Europe).

There is a broad project team involved in this job:

Both Venuz and Realtime are also from Germany. Muxwave is a Chinese manufacturer, but has distributors/resellers all over the place.

“The installation of this transparent screen on the façade of our venue is a clear example of how hosting leading events in numerous industries has a major impact on the city and on our institution,” says Marc Serra, Venue Services Infrastructure Director of Fira de Barcelona. “It also illustrates Fira’s ongoing quest for innovation, the use of new technologies, and excellence. With the new infrastructure, Fira once again sets itself apart as a leading institution that hosts the best events and has the best venues.”

It’s also a hell of  a marketing vehicle for the manufacturer and these supporting companies – with the display seen by integrators and consultants from all over the world during the show, not to mention the brands who attend huge shows in Barcelona like Mobile World Congress. I’d be very surprised if this is not going at a highly favorable cost to the venue operators.

I like this mostly transparent stuff, though it is marketed as invisible (it’s not) and holographic (it’s not). It is reminiscent of the perforated vinyl graphics that get applied to the bodies and windows of rail cars when they get fully wrapped and branded for ad campaigns. You can see out, through all the little holes. This is a metallic or fiberglass substrate for the teeny, connected light emitters.

Looking forward to seeing this, though it is not my preferred entrance. The digital signage hall is at the other end from this entry, and there are two other ways into the venue. While I have seen this stuff at a few trade shows now, and competitive versions at DSE (ClearLED had an alternative and i5LED is developing one), the only installed and operating version I have seen was at the Under Armour store in the repurposed retail space of London’s huge Battersea Power Station.

It looked good, though the point of it was somewhat lost on me, as it was at the back side of the store, facing a secondary corridor.

The ISE one makes a bunch of sense, as it can brand the shows but also, presumably, be sold advertising for exhibitors who want to remind people of their presence and booth location, JUST as they’re arriving and getting their trade show game-faces on.

I’m assuming the content will be somewhat more compelling than what’s provided in the concept image, though wayfinding is always helpful.


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