We have two products available to the market. Both products use the same trans media and an LED array. The first is what we call our consumer grade product. This product has a thick lexan laminate applied to the surface to protect the image, and it comes with a “wall wart” transformer power supply. These are available with a hanging wire (for sizes above 12×12) and your choice of power cord connector location. The price on this grade is very affordable ranging from $90 for an 8” square up to $265 for a 20×30. This is the maximum size available for our consumer grade product.
Our professional grade product has the image face mounted behind a non-glare acrylic sheet which provides a smooth surface, and has an enhanced look and a very solid feel. The professional grade image has a remote mountable transformer that can be hard wired into the building and is designed to be mounted with the power wires routed behind the sheetrock for a clean, permanent looking display. Larger sizes are available in our professional grade product. Please visit the professional grade product page for more information and pricing (Under construction: In the meantime, visit www.illuminartus.com for examples of professional grade pieces we have done).
Turn your Photo into a Remarkable Image with a Backlitbox Frame
Thank you for taking the time to read about our product. We think that you will find that this product will provide the most eye-catching, unique presentation for your art. Back lit images are certainly not a new concept, but no other previous product has made the image the star of the show. Other attempts have always had large frames or distracting spaces around the image which draw a viewer’s attention from the image on display. With our products your image becomes the entire focal point and the product itself nearly vanishes.
From Digital Photo to Backlitbox
Your digital image is printed on a special photographic film that has traditionally been referred to as a duratrans (“Duratrans” was originally trademarked by Kodak) material. We use a ”Duratrans” (specifically Fujitrans or Ilfotrans) print media which was developed specifically to use in a back lit application. Other products use inkjet prints that were made to have light bounce off the front. Inkjet inks get their color from extremely fine granules of colored materials (pigments). Visualized up close these granules can be described as colored grains of sand. These grains of sand reflect color very well but transmit none since they are opaque. This is part of the reason that backlit inkjet prints have a muted color gamut. Inkjet pigmented inks have their strengths when printing reflective photo images but the backlit medias are simply an afterthought, a limited imitation. Since backlit inkjet images are printed by spraying ink onto a very absorbent coated media, dark areas will receive more ink than lighter highlight areas. This makes it difficult to maintain fine detail in these shadowed areas. Duratrans material has a silver halide coating adhered to a tough polyester diffusion film which is exposed with light and developed using a traditional photographic process. Shadows and highlights will be exposed to their respective amounts of light but there is no chance for inks to bleed due to excessive buildup. Inkjet media can absorb only so much ink. This limitation helps explain why the shadow areas (Dmax) of an inkjet image will always appear dark grayish when viewed backlit. Add the grayish shadows with the muted color gamut and anyone could easily see a marked difference between a Duratrans and a backlit inkjet image. The dyes which color the light traveling through a Duratrans have been engineered for viewing in front of a light source. Duratrans material can provide unmatched crispness and detail to your images because it is a continuous tone process. This does not really translate to dots per inch, but a rough estimate would be around 4000 dpi where most inkjet processes allow only 1440 at best. We prefer images from our customers at 300 dpi at full print size or better for the best possible print.
Our products use an array of LEDs to provide optimum light dispersion over the entire viewing surface. Other products use edge lighting to cut the number of LEDs for cost concerns. This greatly sacrifices the quality of the image due to the uneven distribution of light. Most edge lit products are instantly recognizable by the bright halo around the dark center. These LEDs are rated for 50,000 to 100,000 hours. That means if you run them constantly they should last between 5.7 and 11.4 years!
The cord for your backlit box can be placed almost anywhere on the back or on the sides. We have options for left side low while looking at the image, right side low, centered on the bottom, or low and centered on the back. If the picture is going to be displayed on a shelf either side or on the back is best as the cord will not interfere with the box standing on the bottom. If it is going to be hung on a wall the sides or centered on the bottom is best, wherever you can hide the cord best. You can even hide the cord through your walls, we made a short youtube video to show that process: Hide the Cord