Flat-Panel TV Mounts, Lifts, Covers, and Hide-Aways Washington DC
Flat-Panel TV Mounts, Lifts, Covers, and Hide-Aways
July 3, 2008 By HE Staff
When you turn off your flat-panel TV, it becomes a black hole in the wall. Here’s how to hide it away when you’re not watching.
My friend Steve just bought a large flat-panel TV and mounted it to the wall. He assumed his wife would love the sleek look, but she’s not happy with the way the TV becomes a “piece of black glass that’s just hanging there” when it’s not in use. It seems like she wishes the TV would just go away when they’re not watching it. Luckily for Steve, it doesn’t take any magic at all to make that happen.
Trompe L’Oeil TV
Mounting a flat-panel display on the wall often means having to take down artwork or pictures. Why not follow in the footsteps of Optimus Prime and transform that TV into “more than meets the eye,” simply by disguising it as the art it’s replacing?
This idea emerged about five years ago. The first products in this category used a fairly simple frame with a built-in motor that rolls up the artwork to reveal the TV. Since its conception, though, the idea has evolved in many ways.
Most of these frames demand that the TV be recessed in the wall, which usually requires professional installation. There are versions that work with non-recessed TVs, but they protrude several inches from the wall and thus aren’t as stylish. Solar Shading Systems’ VisionArt frames can be custom-fitted to conceal recessed or non-recessed large-format displays.
More than 250 different prints and photographic works are offered for use, but customers can also use their own artwork or photography. You can choose from more than 40 frame styles. When it’s time to stop admiring the art, just hit the TV’s power button; a current sensor inside the frame commands the screen to roll up whenever it senses power. The process reverses when you turn off the TV. Similar products are available from Media Decor, Chief Manufacturing, and others.
Vutec expands on this idea with its ArtScreen line . ArtScreens work essentially the same way as other such products, but they come in a wider array of standard configurations. The CineScape covers front- or rear-projection video screens up to 45 inches high and 100 inches wide, and the SoundScape 360 is a roughly square-shaped frame that provides room below the TV to accommodate one of the new single-speaker soundbars.
Auton takes an entirely different track with its In-Vis-O-Trak and Shadow Trak. Instead of keeping the flat-panel TV inside a frame and rolling up the artwork, a concealed rack-and-pinion mechanism moves the entire picture out of the way. The In-Vis-O-Trak works with recess-mount TVs, while the Shadow Trak provides a wood-frame box that fits around a surface-mounted TV. These products obviously require more space than the VisionArt and ArtScreen, but there’s no denying that the In-Vis-O-Trak, in particular, exudes James Bond cool.
One might say that Tapestries, Ltd. is getting medieval on your TV’s butt. The company offers cloister-style tapestries ...