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Digital Signage Hardware

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A digital signage system can be broken down into three parts:

- Hardware
- Software
- Content

Rise Vision makes the software and content part easy being that Rise Vision digital signage content management software is trusted by over 9,000 organizations and 3,000 schools worldwide. As experts in digital signage, we’d like to help guide you through, specifically, the hardware part of procuring a digital signage system.

When we’re talking about hardware, we mean:

- Digital signage media players
- Digital signage displays
- Cables, mounts and support structure

In this guide, we’re going to navigate you through how to choose the right hardware options so that your digital signage setup process is as painless and trouble-free as can be. So, let’s get started!

How To Design Your Digital Signage System

Choosing the right hardware for your digital signage system requires research and consideration before purchase. The steps below will help you think through the hardware procurement process so that you save time, money, and headaches.

Step 1

Figure out how many displays you need.

The first step to creating a digital signage system is determining how many displays you will need. For example, if you’re designing a digital signage system for an elementary school you may need a display for the following locations:

- Main Entrance
- Faculty / Front Office
- Cafeteria
- Gymnasium
- Main Hallway

For each display that’s going to be installed, one media player will be required.

Figure Out How Many Displays You Need



Step 2

Choose a media player operating system technology.

Digital signage media players come in many options:

- Rise Vision
- Chrome OS
- Fire Stick and TV
- Linux
- Microsoft Windows
- Raspberry Pi
- Android
- Airtame
- Zoom Rooms
- ScreenBeam
- Mersive
- Vivi
- And more!

Generally speaking, the technology your organization is the most comfortable with should be the technology used for your digital signage system. This will avoid time being spent on learning how to use new operating systems. It can also save money being spent on outside contractors for help.

Choose a media player operating system technology
Step 3


Before you purchase any digital signage hardware, you’ll want to measure the walls and spaces where the displays will go. It’s a good idea to get to know your space limitations, distances between the ceiling and floor, and where you’d like to center your displays on walls. It will also help mitigate instances where haphazardly installing displays would end up being a poor experience for your audience.

Another important design note is that you should be aware of the weight of your display and hardware. Your IT department or professional installation company will need to know the weight of your displays, media player, and support hardware so they can install your signage without it ripping out of the wall.

Step 4

Choose reliable digital signage hardware.

A common mistake is that schools and organizations will use cheaply made digital signage equipment that can't reliably play content for extended periods of time. Commercial digital signage products and well-manufactured consumer devices like Fire Sticks are designed to operate for years. 

Beware of used products.
There is a used market for digital signage displays and media players. It’s important to remember that these products may have been running for weeks on end and have burned through a good amount of their product lifespan. Additionally, newer displays required more advanced media players to produce crystal clear signage. It’s rarely a good idea to buy used or outdated digital signage equipment.

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Important Notice

Amazon’s new Fire OS 8 for Fire TVs and Sticks has system-level changes, which make it difficult to use Rise Vision or any digital signage software with Fire OS. Rise Vision no longer recommends using Fire Sticks or Fire TVs for use with digital signage.

For alternative media player recommendations, please check out our hardware list here.

You can still use a Fire OS 8 Amazon device however it requires additional steps to set up Rise Vision and could stop working depending on the changes Amazon makes.

Choosing A Media Player

A digital signage media player is a computer that’s intended to operate digital signage. All the components used within the media player have been chosen for being high-quality and specifically for their endurance characteristics.

Raspberry Pi, Chromebits, or consumer computers can be used as digital signage media players. They are best used for less demanding digital signage, such as running for a limited number of hours per day, or if you're showing basic content such as images and text.

We recommend purchasing a digital signage media player that has been pre-configured with your desired operating system. The following OS-ready media players will operate your digital signage system out of the box:

Rise Vision Media Player Hardware as a Service.
Avocor R Series Hardware as a Service
Chrome OS Media Player: AOPEN Chromebox Commercial 2
Linux Media Player: NUC I3 Media Player
Windows Media Player: NUC I3 Media Player
Raspberry Pi Media Player.
Android Media Player.
Amazon Fire Stick 4K Max.
Apple TV.

And more!

Rise Vision also works on wireless presentation and meeting room systems like: Airtame, Zoom Rooms, ScreenBeam, Mersive, Vivi, and more.

Learn more about digital signage media players.

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Choosing Displays

It's possible to set up a digital signage system using a TV, but it's best to choose a commercial-grade display.

The next thing is to determine the size of the display you will need. Earlier in this guide we discussed measuring the wall or location of where your displays will be installed. This will give you a good idea of how large of a display you can procure.

When searching for a digital signage display, be sure to locate the actual height and width dimensions of the display to see if it will fit within your measurement envelope. Most displays are marketed with a single diagonal dimension which can’t be used for any useful dimensional purposes.

Learn more about digital signage displays.

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“Compared to many other digital signage platforms on the market, Rise Vision was an easy choice for us to make due to the cloud-based architecture, flexibility in being able to deploy on Windows, Linux, or Raspberry Pi, and a very low cost per display.”

— Iain Brew, Macquarie University
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How do you get started with digital signage?

Step 1

Pick a template

To easily create a social media wall, you’ll need to first pick a template from our website or from this page and then sign up for a free Rise Vision trial account.

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Step 2

Activate your display

After picking a template and then creating a Rise Vision trial account, it's time to activate your display.

To share Rise Vision to digital signage you need a digital signage display or TV and a digital signage media player if it isn't built into the TV.

Share Digital Signage Anywhere Rise Vision
Step 3

Keep it interesting

Remember to continue communicating better by subscribing to our free weekly template recommendations and be sure to attend one of our free weekly training sessions. Also, we’re standing by if there’s any problem, feel free to contact us anytime.

Keep it Interesting Digital Signage

Trusted By Thousands Of Organizations, Including:

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Why Rise Vision?

Digital signage doesn’t have to be difficult. We make it easy or your money back.

Easy To Use

Our customers made 1028 eye-catching Display updates last week.

Fast Support

We’re here to help! Our customer satisfaction rating is 100%.


Never worry about content not showing! Our uptime is 95.20% .

Simple Pricing

Save hundreds with our simple, no-nonsense flexible pricing.

“We have used Rise Vision for over 5 years, running on Chromeboxes and large TV monitors. It has greatly improved our communication with our students on a daily basis. It has also allowed us to provide a great first impression to our visitors, and provide them with helpful information about special events taking place in our school building.”

— Todd Grundman, Lakeside Lutheran High School
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