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19" Panels

Rack Panels

Not the most exciting subject in the world, but a necessary part to any rack or flight case installation. 19" rack panels are a standard component when assembling any rack case and all the sizes are available in 1U increments up to 6U. Each panel is 483mm wide and each U or unit increment is 44mm. In imperial measurements this is 19 by 1 ¾ inches and the original form of measure for this kind of equipment.

The non-standard ½U size is also available and can be used to fill in gaps in the panel where non-standard equipment is being used. When assembling a series of panels and equipment you can often find that pieces of equipment are slightly over size, or screw heads protrude making it had to fit together, this is where the small half size panel comes in handy.

If you are filling up a rack with equipment that generates heat, such as; amplifiers, computer servers etc. it is essential that some gaps for vent panels are left in the stack. If there is the potential for a lot of heat to be produced or the ambient temperature is likely to rise, then allow extra space in the cabinet and use rack panels with fans attached. This will give you forced air circulation around the cabinet, which should take care of any environmental conditions.

Rack panels are not only blank of course and apart from vent panels any number of different connector combinations can be fitted. Most studio patch panels are rack mounted and as many as twelve sockets can be accommodated along the face of the panel.  It is also worth considering using this style of panel on the back face of a rack cabinet. Neat socket panels here can make the whole assembly more manageable.

Security panels also fall into the rack panel category of items, although they are generally as an addition to the rack assembly. These panels can be fitted over the front of a piece of rack equipment, stopping unwanted fiddling with controls and switches. You may need longer fixing bolts, since the panel is usually secured together with the item of equipment it is protecting, also consider using special screw heads if keeping hands out is very important.  Protection panels offer another variation of the security panel and have a clear front panel so the settings can be seen, but not interfered with.