Differences Between Indoor and Outdoor LED Displays

Outdoor LED Screen Display

Digital LED displays are one of the current digital strategies for product marketing and brand awareness campaigns. This post compares indoor vs outdoor LED displays by detailing their differences, advantages, disadvantages, installation areas, how to distinguish them, and factors you need to consider before making a purchase decision.

Indoor LED Screen Displays

Indoor digital LED Screen - sports arena

Indoor LED displays are designed to be strictly set up within buildings or in closed areas. 

They have a wide range of applications such as advertising, display of information, menus, and display of safety or brand name signs among others.

They have no IP ratings, and therefore,  are not resistant to outdoor elements such as water or sunlight.

Outdoor LED Screen Displays

Outdoor LED Screen Displays

Outdoor LED displays are designed for outdoor installation.  They have waterproof IP ratings that suit different locations. 

They also come with cooling systems for stable operation even in hot weather conditions.

Indoor vs Outdoor LED Displays – Application Areas

While there are several differences between indoor and outdoor LED displays, the primary difference lies in their application or installation areas.

Indoor LED Displays – Installation Locations

Because indoor LED displays operate in closed areas, they come in different types to suit different indoor spaces. 

Here are a few examples of locations or areas where indoor LED displays are used:

Shopping Malls and Specialty Stores

Outdoor Led Screens in Shopping Mall
Outdoor Led Screens in Shopping Mall

You will find Indoor LED displays installed in shopping malls for promotion campaigns or other customer-focused announcements. 

There is a wide range of Shopping Mall  LED display options you can choose from based on your requirements.

Indoor LED screen displays can also be found in specialty stores to captivate customers and enhance the store’s foot traffic.

Restaurants, Hotels,  & Bars

Restaurant LED Digital Display

 Another location where indoor LED screen displays can be installed is in restaurants, hotels, and bars where they are mostly used to relay information and for promotions.

 LED displays in restaurants come in different forms to suit your advertising or promotion requirements.

Drug Stores 

Drug stores are as well great locations to set up indoor LED screen displays such as pharmacy store LED displays 

Entertainment and Recreation Areas

Some indoor LED displays are designed for entertainment and recreation places such as presentation stages, concerts, TV stations, and sports arenas among others.

Indoor LED displays for entertainment and recreation come in different forms based on your specific needs.

Cooperate and  Institutions

LED display in Banking Hall

Banks, hotels, churches, and security rooms provide perfect locations for indoor LED screen displays.


You can have indoor LED displays installed in your company’s offices to keep employees informed. The displays can be used to announce upcoming events.  

Outdoor LED Display – Installation Spaces

In comparing the difference between Indoor LED displays and Outdoor Displays, it is also important you have a better understanding of where outdoor LED displays are to be installed for out-of-home-advertising 

You will find different outdoor LED screen displays along the streets, on highways, outside shopping malls, or on mobile vans.

Indoor vs Outdoor LED Displays – 20  Key Differences 

Apart from location differences, below are the key differences between Indoor and Outdoor LED Displays.


Comparison Feature Indoor LED Display Outdoor LED Displays
1. The Angle of View The angle of view is limited to one direction, and the viewing is at close range. Can be viewed by the target audience from different angles or locations from a far distance
2. Brightness Less bright because they are to be viewed at close range. Much brighter to allow for viewing from far away even during bright sunny days.
3. Connectivity Designed to allow for connection to different devices. Connectivity to other devices is limited as they come with fewer wired or wireless connection capabilities
4. Content Capacity is Used to display more detailed content because they are viewed at close range. The displays are simple with few details. This is because they are to be viewed from longer distances.
5. Content Refresh Rate High content refresh rate Low content refresh rate
6. Cooling System Do not come with a cooling system because they are not exposed to hot external environments Often come with a cooling system to ensure stable performance in hot environments or regions
7. Cost and Set-up Ease Lower initial cost with fewer requirements on installation materials.

This makes them much easier to set up. Maintenance costs will also be higher

You incur more initial costs because you will require additional installation materials and more labor.

This makes them more demanding to set up.

However, maintenance costs will be much lower.

8. Durability Generally has a shorter lifespan Have a longer lifespan because they are made of protective materials.
9. Flexibility More flexible as they allow for easier relocation and configuration Less flexible in terms of relocation because they are often installed in one location
10. Installation Requirements Require fewer installation resources Requires more installation time with additional installation resources.
11. Interconnectivity Can be connected to other devices to allow for desired networking or interconnectivity Have limited interconnectivity
12. Interactivity Can be designed to be interactive by allowing for user input Less interactive in design. Displays can either be static or with limited viewer interaction.
13. Operation Temperature Tolerance Components have limited temperature tolerance because of their indoor location They have high-temperature tolerance as they are exposed to a wide range of outdoor temperatures.
14.  Display Resolution Have higher resolutions for excellent image quality Come with low resolutions and, therefore,  image quality is low as they are to be viewed from farther distances.
15. Security They are not vulnerable to theft or cases of vandalism as they are secured within closed areas or buildings with security measures in place. Are vulnerable to vandalism and theft as they are installed in public places that often lack security measures.
16. Set up Time and Ease Requires less setup time or installation time They require more time and skills to set up
17. Size They are often smaller in size because they target fewer viewers.  Internal spaces may also be limited  Have larger luminous size because they target large audiences 
18. Vibration and Shock Resistance Not designed to resist vibrations or shock Designed to be resistant to outdoor vibration and shock  
19. Visibility Can only be viewed at close range and targets a limited audience Visible from long distances and so, are used to target a larger audience
20. Weatherproofing Materials used are not resistant to harsh weather conditions such as water and Ultraviolet ( UV) rays. So, they are restricted to indoor installation. Materials used are resistant to harsh weather conditions

Resistance to harsh Weather Conditions like rainfall or sunlight’s Ultraviolet (UV) rays


2. Indoor vs Outdoor LED  Screen Displays – Pros & Cons

Another perspective of telling the difference between Indoor LED displays and outdoor LED displays is by comparing their pros and cons.

 2.1 Advantages of Indoor LED Displays

  • Cost-effective: They cost less as fewer materials are required
  • Installation Ease and safety: Their setup is simple and easy.  They are also safe because they use less power.
  • Durability: Highly durable with low maintenance costs
  • Superior visual quality– Because of their high resolutions, their images are captivating and visually engaging.
  • Brightness – You can easily control their brightness to suit your indoor environment.
  • Presentation Flexibility – You can move them to new locations and configure them easily
  • Provides Perfect Viewing Angles:  They provide audiences with excellent angles of view for enhanced advertising impact.
  • Environmental Control: Being interactive, you can easily configure them to suit your environment.
  • They are safe: Because they use less power, they are safe to use

 2.2  Disadvantages of Indoor LED Displays

  • Restricted Visibility: They can only be viewed by audiences from one angle of view and at a closer distance.
  • Size Limitation: They are generally smaller in size and this limits the amount of content you can display.

 2.3 Advantages of Outdoor LED Displays

  • Durability: Designed with tough durable materials
  • Enhanced brightness and visibility: These are brighter for perfect visibility even when facing sunlight.
  • Installation Flexibility: Some outdoor LED displays can be easily relocated to different locations.
  • Harsh Weather Protection: Are protected from outdoor elements such as water and dust 

 2.4 Disadvantages of Outdoor LED Displays

  • High Initial expenditure with more installation resources:
  • Power Consumption is usually high
  • Require cooling system making its operation costly
  • The brightness level is fixed and cannot be adjusted at will to suit the external environment
  • Exposure to harsh weather can easily cause damage or sudden failures
  • Control is limited as they have no user-input options
  • Can be easily vandalized when installed in low-security locations
  • Risk of theft in less secure areas
  • They cause light  pollution in major cities or centers 

3. How To  Distinguish  Between  Indoor and Outdoor LED Displays

Below are some of the appearance features that can guide you in distinguishing between indoor and outdoor LED screen displays:

Size Appearance

When it comes to differences between indoor LED displays and Outdoor displays, size is a crucial comparison characteristic.

 Indoor LED displays are often smaller in size making them suitable for use in enclosed areas such as institutions, reaction centers, or restaurants among others.

However, outdoor LED displays are larger making them a perfect choice for advertising or promotion of products or brands in extended outdoor locations such as in city centers, highways, streets, or stadiums among others.

Brightness Appearance

Another way you can distinguish between indoor LED displays and outdoor displays is by assessing their brightness levels. 

Outdoor LED screen displays are much brighter compared to indoor LED screens.  This is because they have to remain visible even in sunny weather.  

Resolution Appearance

Resolution assessment is yet another appearance technique you can use to distinguish between internal and external LED screen displays. 

You will notice that indoor LED screens display high-quality images and graphics compared to outdoor LED screens. 

This is because they come with high resolutions for perfect close-range indoor viewing for maximum advertising or promotion impacts.

4. Choosing Indoor vs Outdoor LED Screens – Factors You Must Consider

Apart from the need for you to take note of the differences between internal and external  LED screen displays, here are some of the factors you should consider when shopping for a suitable LED display for your advertising or promotion project:

  •  Brightness: Your chosen indoor or outdoor LED screen display must have adequate brightness for desired visibility
  • Power Ratings: You must choose indoor or outdoor LED displays with efficient power consumption. This will ensure that you avoid incurring high costs in electricity.
  • Durability: It is important that you only select LED screens that are designed for outdoor environments. This is to ensure they serve you better and for longer
  • Suitable Viewing Angle: Ensure that the view angle of your selected LED display is wide enough for perfect viewing from different angles.
  • Display Resolution: The clarity of your image or graphic displays is critical for your advertisement to have a positive impact.  It is, therefore, important that your chosen LED display has a satisfactory and desired resolution level.
  •  Safety Considerations: Ensure that your selected LED displays do not pose any risks to your target viewers. 
    Therefore, you must assess their brightness levels, cooling systems, and design materials to ensure their safety.  It is recommended that you select LED screens that have safety certifications.
  • Maintenance Requirements:  Your indoor and outdoor LED displays will require maintenance to ensure they perform efficiently.   You should, therefore, only choose LED screens that are cost-effective to maintain.
  • Power Consumption: LED displays require power to operate, so you should consider the power consumption of the LED display to ensure that it will be efficient and cost-effective to run.
  • Installation Requirements: Consider all the installation costs including resources that are required before you make a purchase decision. 

5. Conclusion

When it comes to modern advertising and marketing campaigns, the role played by both indoor and outdoor LED  screen displays continues to be significant.

They provide an efficient way of captivating audiences for enhanced awareness and brand promotion.

When assessing indoor vs outdoor LED displays, it is important that you take note of their intended installation areas, sizes, and brightness levels among other key factors. 

Generally, internal  LED screen displays are smaller in size and lighter in weight compared to their external LED display counterparts.

 External  LED screen displays are larger and much brighter for enhanced visibility from long distances even in bright sunny weather. Unlike indoor LED screens, they are designed to resist harsh weather conditions and require extra resources for their installation.

And so, as you make your purchase decision on which LED screen displays to go, it is important that you also consider their pros and cons. 

Further, having a better understanding of what you should consider when buying an LED display is critical.

Your final purchase decision, however,  should be guided by your specific project requirements as well as your budget. 

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