Rackmount LCD panels allow mounting computer displays and monitors into server racks and other professional IT infrastructure. With the right accessories and careful configuration, rackmount LCD panels can provide an efficient and ergonomic workstation for network administrators, broadcast operators, security personnel, and other tech professionals who need to monitor and manage systems from a centralized location.
When selecting and setting up rackmount LCD panels, there are a number of factors to consider in order to create an optimal setup tailored to your workspace, use cases, and preferences.
Choosing the Right Rackmount LCD Panel for Your Needs
When selecting a rackmount LCD monitor, you’ll want to evaluate the display size, resolution, brightness, contrast ratio, video connectivity, and any special features to ensure the display is suitable for your requirements in terms of screen real estate, image quality, compatibility with your video sources, and technologies that may suit your usage:
Display Size – Rackmount LCD panels come in a range of sizes from 10 inches up to 24 inches or even larger. In most cases, bigger is better in terms of providing more usable on-screen space for your applications and multitasking. But also consider desk space constraints when choosing a display size.
Resolution – Look for a high native resolution like 1920×1080 Full HD or 4K UHD 3840×2160 for ultra crisp, clear text and images. The higher the resolution, the more desktop real estate is available.
Brightness and Contrast – Ensure the LCD panel has adequate brightness in nits (cd/m2) and contrast ratio for your ambient lighting conditions. 500 nits or 1000 nits brightness is recommended for most well-lit office environments. High contrast improves distinguishability between light and dark screen elements.
Video Connectivity – Check that the rackmount LCD monitor has the type of video inputs your computers and video sources require, such as HDMI, DisplayPort, DVI, VGA, SDI, etc. Multi-input displays provide flexibility for connecting different devices.
Special Features – Consider rackmount LCDs with integrated KVM switches for controlling multiple computers, PiP/PbP for multiple views, touchscreens, ruggedized construction, protective front glass, programmable shortcuts keys, or other features that may be useful for your intended workstation applications.
Enhancing Your LCD Panel Setup with Rackmount Accessories
By strategically adding specialty rackmount accessories, you can greatly enhance the ergonomics, usability, convenience and productivity of your LCD panel workstation setup:
Rackmount Keyboard Drawers – Keyboard drawers designed specifically for rack enclosures allow you to position a keyboard and mouse directly underneath the rackmount LCD panel where you can access them comfortably without excessive reaching. Smooth ball-bearing slides provide adjustable positioning.
Articulating Monitor Arms – Articulating arms can be tremendously helpful for fine tuning the height, depth, viewing angle, and left/right swivel adjustments of the rackmount LCD panel to achieve the most ergonomic viewing position that avoids neck, back, and eye strain. Quick-release VESA mounting makes attachment and switching out monitors fast and simple.
Rack Shelves – Rack shelves and trays allow you to mount keyboards, mice, trackballs, and other peripherals directly within the server rack enclosure rather than taking up desk space. This keeps accessories secured and organized.
Rackmount KVM Switches – A KVM switch enables controlling multiple computers from a single keyboard, mouse, and monitor. Rackmount KVM models conveniently integrate into the rack enclosure for streamlined access and switching between systems.
Rackmount Uninterruptible Power Supplies (UPS) – Rackmount UPS systems provide battery backup power to prevent system crashes, data loss, and damage that can occur due to power outages. Having the UPS integrated into the server rack is convenient, compact, and out of the way.
Optimizing the Physical Setup for Comfort and Accessibility
Carefully installing and physically adjusting the placement of your LCD panel and rackmount accessories can go a long way towards improving viewing comfort, ergonomics, and workstation accessibility:
LCD Panel Placement Height – Mount the rackmount LCD panel at a height that positions the screen at or slightly below eye level while you are seated. Placing frequently accessed peripherals within comfortable reach also minimizes excessive strain and stretching.
Tilt, Swivel, and Articulation – Take full advantage of the tilt, swivel, and articulating arm capabilities of your rackmount hardware to independently adjust the LCD panel and devices to optimal angles that prevent glare and reflections while offering comfortable viewing and use with minimal neck, back, and eye strain.
Cable Management – Neatly routing, bundling, and securing the various cables from the LCD panel, KVM, power strips, and other rack devices improves reliability while also enhancing airflow and accessibility within the enclosure. Well organized cabling contributes to a clean, professional appearance.
Task Lighting – Provide sufficient task lighting for comfortable viewing while avoiding glare on the LCD panel screen. Add supplemental lighting as needed for specific work areas within the rack, such as keyboard drawers. Dimmer controlled lighting helps adjust brightness levels.
Ergonomic Seating – Using an ergonomic chair that fully supports proper back posture goes hand in hand with the adjustments to create a comfortable workstation that avoids fatigue over long work days. Consider complementary accessories like ergonomic footrests and wrist rests as needed.
Accessibility – Carefully plan the layout of your rack enclosure to allow easy access to the LCD panel as well as drives, racks, ports, cabling, KVM switches, shelves, and other hardware components to facilitate performing common administrative tasks.
Configuring the Software Settings for a More Comfortable Viewing Experience
The software settings of your operating system and display have a significant impact on viewing comfort and efficiency. Be sure to optimize:
Display Resolution – Running the LCD panel at its native resolution will provide the sharpest text and images. Higher resolutions allow more screen space for multitasking, but may require UI scaling.
Refresh Rate – Utilize the highest refresh rate supported by the LCD, ideally 60Hz or above, to prevent eye fatigue and headaches that can result from screen flicker.
Color Temperature, Gamma, and RGB – Calibrate the display’s color temperature, gamma curve, and RGB levels to achieve visually accurate color reproduction if color critical work is performed.
Contrast – Adjust monitor contrast to distinguish screen elements in your particular lighting environment. Lower contrast reduces eye strain in darker viewing conditions.
Desktop Organization – Extend your workspace across multiple displays or configure mirrored cloning based on application needs. Align displays cleanly for easy navigation between screens.
Display Rotation – Pivoting displays to portrait orientation is excellent for coding, long documents, reading, and web browsing by increasing useful vertical space.
Text Size – Enlarge OS and application text size for improved readability based on-screen distance. Larger widgets, icons, and UI elements also help usability.
Night/Dark Mode – Enable OS and app night modes or use warmer display color temperatures in low ambient light to reduce glare and eyestrain.
Customizations for Specific Applications and Workloads
Certain customizations to a rackmount LCD panel workstation cater to the needs of specialized use cases and workloads:
Software Development – Programmers can take advantage of expansive lines of code visible on ultra-high resolution 4K or 8K displays. Dual vertical monitor arrangements also help in this regard.
Graphic Design – Graphic artists appreciate the ample space for toolbars and design timelines provided by larger 27-32 inch displays. Color accuracy is also imperative for design work.
Financial Trading – Rapidly responding screens with high refresh rates and potentially curved widescreen formats can help traders more quickly interpret streaming market data.
IT Administration – IT professionals monitoring multiple system dashboards benefit greatly from multi-display setups to keep all critical info simultaneously visible.
Broadcast/Video Engineering – Flexible video input support and ruggedized construction serves video engineers well in mobile production trucks. Protective front window shielding is advised.
Physical Security – Security teams need maximum brightness LCD panels to maintain visibility under brightly lit conditions. Video wall controllers allow simultaneous multi-camera visibility.
By selecting the ideal LCD panel model for your needs and workspace, outfitting your rack with beneficial accessories, optimizing the physical setup, configuring software settings judiciously, and customizing for your particular applications, you can assemble a rackmount LCD panel workstation tailored for maximizing your productivity, comfort, and efficiency. Be sure to follow ergonomic best practices and continue refining your custom setup over time.