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Archive for December 9th, 2013

Tightrope Media Systems ZEPLAY Enhances Fan Experience For Ottawa Senators NHL Games

Arena’s production team credits durability, ease of use, and archiving capabilities as key features of instant replay system

ST. PAUL, MINNESOTA, December 9, 2013 – The Ottawa Senators recently upgraded the production capabilities of its multipurpose home arena, Canadian Tire Centre, focusing on a new LED score board, cameras, fiber infrastructure and a complete control room overhaul. The control room project included replacing its older SD gear with new, all-digital HD switchers, routers and replay system that would meet the production crew’s specific requirements.

The production team selected two ZEPLAY slo-mo instant replay systems for sports from Tightrope Media Systems, citing ease of use, durability, and quick and easy access to game action as benefits – all while offering exceptional value for its price.

Stan Kertesz, audio and video production manager for the Ottawa Senators, explained that his crew needed a reliable and easy to use replay system for its new LED score board and monitors located throughout the arena. This is because ZEPLAY would be integral to capturing fast-paced game action and generating fan excitement during home games.

“It has always been important that we have the ability to produce our own replays,” explains Kertesz. “We realize that when you’re a fan watching a game at home, you get these great angles and replays, but that’s not always the case when you’re in the arena watching the games live. With that in mind, I wanted two replay machines from the start. We had one SD system from another vendor but the front end control wasn’t very good, and it had some bugs. It also only gave us four angles, and I wanted many more.”

Kertesz took a serious look at the price-to-performance ratio of available replay systems. “The consultant we were working with recommended Tightrope,” he says. “We checked it out and the price point was very good. I looked through the specs and the functionality and realized this system was exactly what we needed. We’re basically getting two machines for the price of one.”

Each ZEPLAY system allows operators eight channels of live replay (four in, four out) and a built-in multiviewer for studying angles. The unit’s controller and jog/shuttle wheel with magnetic stops gives operators the accuracy and speed needed when working under pressure. “They are good, solid controllers,” says Kertesz. “That’s something we didn’t have before with our old unit; that ease of use and control is something my operators appreciated right off the bat.”

ZEPLAY’s extensive tagging options to assist with storage, recall and lightning-fast highlight package creation was another essential feature for Kertesz. His operators archive game-day footage for highlights, promo packages, posting videos online or even as complementary footage after a game during player interviews.

“The archiving capability and full HD quality is very important to us, and overall it is the biggest way that ZEPLAY enhanced our game and workflow,” says Kertesz. “It’s great that we can show replays during the game, but with the tagging features, we also have that ability to create these HD highlight melts after the games. We can digitally transfer those to our edit suites and build databases. It makes the workflow really simple.”

Up and running on ZEPLAY after training for only two games, Kertesz stresses that it was not only quick and easy to learn, but the rewards were immediate.

“You can hear the reaction from the fans when you get a good replay, like the puck just barely stopping on the goal line,” says Kertesz. “So, we get recognition that it enhances the fan experience. Overall, ZEPLAY was a great choice and has become a big part of our show.”

About Tightrope Media Systems

Founded in 1997, Tightrope Media Systems is the pioneer of web-centric digital signage and broadcast automation systems. It provides station automation, video servers, internet video on demand, live streaming, the Carousel Digital Signage system, and ZEPLAY, a multi-channel instant replay machine for stadiums, arenas and Outside Broadcast vehicles. Tightrope’s award winning systems are used throughout the world. You can reach Tightrope Media Systems at (866) 866-4118 or visit them on the web at http://www.trms.com.

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Electrosonic Supports Integrated Environmental Media System in New Tom Bradley International Terminal at LAX

Photo: Moment Factory

The new Tom Bradley International Terminal at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) offers passengers a unique travel experience with its Integrated Environmental Media System (IEMS), a series of seven digital media features integrated into the interior architecture that provides entertainment and information to passengers. Electrosonic was tasked by Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA) with the detailed engineering and system integration of the IEMS components, and the build out of the IEMS control room that keeps everything humming around the clock.

Electrosonic was also responsible for the integration and installation of the complex digital playback system that supports the multi-channel synchronization necessary for display on the media features. Electrosonic was involved with the mammoth project for close to two years, providing the client with specialized management expertise throughout.

“This is one of the largest international terminals in the U.S., and its first priority is as an airport, a hub to the rest of the world,” says Electrosonic account executive Bryan Hinckley. “Our experience coordinating with different trades and vendors, and our expertise in integrating complex systems and new playback technology, helped make the IEMS system a success.”

Electrosonic project manager Janne Hammel notes, “Because of the type and scale of work Electrosonic does for multiple industries around the world, we were uniquely qualified to act as conduit between LAWA and the design and content producers, serving as a translator and helping to facilitate communications and manage expectations on all sides. It was extremely challenging and incredibly rewarding.”

The IEMS media features are located in the 150,000-square-foot Antonio Villaraigosa Pavilion (Great Hall) beyond TSA screening and consist of the Welcome Wall, the Bon Voyage Wall, the four-sided Time Tower, the Destination Board and Story Board and two portals that usher travelers to their departure gates. Integrated into the terminal’s architecture, they are more than digital signage or multimedia eye candy. Each media feature serves a specific purpose for the passengers, offers sponsorship opportunities for marketers, and dazzles with its ability to merge the latest technology with soaring architectural elements.

“All of the media features were custom designed to support individual creative visions,” says Hammel. “The ability to roll out large-scale custom projects is all about attention to detail and time management. It takes a certain amount of imagination to go from design to fabrication to hardware integration, where the smallest thing can have a big impact as the project evolves. That’s our business.”

What set the job apart from other large projects was that it was essentially “a series of big multimedia features included in a large public works venue,” she explains. “We had to balance how to integrate the systems into airport operations and security. We spent a lot of time working with the airport IT representative to deliver a system that maintains absolute security.”

The Welcome Wall, which displays joyful scenes of greeting for arriving international passengers, is a high-resolution 6mm LED Daktronics wall measuring approximately 26 by 84 feet, divided into two screens and surrounded by a decorative glass frame. The adjacent Bon Voyage Wall, with content inspired by photographer Philippe Halsman’s Jumpology photographs, is a similar configuration with dimensions of 13 by 23 feet.

The Destination Board is a different take on flight departure information. The 80-foot wide screen displays flight details from LAX’s Flight Information Display System database. The high-resolution 6mm LED screen is partitioned into a central flight info display flanked by informational side panels and framed by a low-resolution crown of LEDs. Content on the side panels is linked in real time to destination flights displayed on the board to provide travelers with fun facts, weather briefs and images of destination cities, while a graceful arched crest features international flag graphics or subtle arrays of colors.

The four-sided Time Tower is built around the Villaraigosa Pavilion’s elevator tower and is designed to not only tell time, but also explore time as part of the travel experience. It is 72 feet high with a base of diffused glass panels and an interior layer of 10mm LEDs. Sensors sensitive to passenger gestures create constantly changing patterns in the content generated through customized programming and the capabilities of the system. The upper surface features high-resolution 6mm LEDs and integrates a functional clock face with entertaining content incorporating a time theme.

“The display is very large and has a number of video content sources which have to synchronize seamlessly on the four sides of the tower,” Hinckley says. “Electrosonic and Smart Monkeys spent a lot of time with the content creators and Daktronics on pixel-for-pixel consistency from media creation through playback, processing and display. There’s no video scaling involved.”

Electrosonic also coordinated with the LAX audio system, which uses very complex zoning, and delivers safety and emergency messages to ensure proper audio playback for the Time Tower clock strike at the top of every hour.

Along the west side of the Villaraigosa Pavilion, poised above retail shops, is the 120-foot-long Story Board feature. Its high-resolution 6mm LED tiles form five display walls of varying size and shape across a structural frame. Once again, Electrosonic worked closely with all the vendors to achieve pixel-for-pixel consistency in a huge palette of pixels comprising custom content that tells ambient narratives about travel.

As passengers move from the Villaraigosa Pavilion toward either the north or south concourse, a series of ten 28-foot-tall columns form a visual portal to their destination. Each column, consisting of six vertically stacked 55-inch Planar LCD monitors, displays content themed around the art traditions of various destination cities. Speakers and motion sensors are embedded in the base units of each portal to enhance the experience.

“It was an integration challenge to make sure the sensor and playback gear could co-exist in the limited space within the portals,” Hinckley points out.

Electrosonic also designed the layout and installed the Main Equipment Room (MER), which is comprised of a control and rack room. Miles of optical fiber from all over the terminal feed into the MER, where over a 1,000 individual connections provide the capability to display and control the content displayed on each feature. Cameras in the terminal that show the content-display status of each feature allows a single operator to monitor all features simultaneously. Additionally, a 65-inch display was installed in the control room where new media content from prospective partners can be reviewed prior to public display.

“We have people on site for 24/7 operation and maintenance of the system,” Hinckley notes. “Since this is a working international airport, the only time we have access to the field equipment is between 2 and 6 am, so we not only need a quick response team on site to remedy any potential problems, but we also need to staff the graveyard shift to make any necessary repairs.”

Janne Hammel believes that once travelers experience the new terminal and its standout media features, they’ll have a greater appreciation for the work of all the vendors involved. “You can talk about physical dimensions and number of pixels, but until you’re standing in that space experiencing the media and how it integrates with the terminal’s passenger activity and flow, you don’t realize how it exceeds your expectations.

“L.A. is a world destination and that’s reflected in the content of the media features and their integration into the physical structure of the new international terminal,” she says.

Electrosonic is proud to be a part of the LAX Integrated Environmental Media Systems (IEMS) Team, which includes: MRA International, IEMS Project Director; Marcela Sardi of Sardi Design, designer of the media features and Creative Director; Smart Monkeys Inc., System Designer and technical consultant for the content delivery system; Daktronics, display supplier; Moment Factory, Executive Content Producer; and Digital Kitchen, Supportive Content Producer.

About Electrosonic
Electrosonic is an international audio-visual company that creates tailored, state-of-the-art solutions for a wide range of markets including theme parks, museums, control rooms, and corporate meeting rooms. Since its founding in 1964, Electrosonic has built a strong reputation for working on complex projects, both large and small, and has developed lasting partnerships with customers and suppliers. Beyond complete integrated systems, Electrosonic provides a comprehensive scope of services including technical design, projector lamp sales, maintenance and operational support.

Learn more about Electrosonic. Visit http://www.electrosonic.com

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Tecom Electronics Signs a Distribution Agreement with Modul IT in Europe

Introducing a new, easier and faster way to have a smart classroom


Dec 4, 2013 – Tecom Electronics, a worldwide provider of TecPodium Interactive Lecterns, has signed a distribution agreement with ModulIT Solutions in Europe.

Tecom manufactures a wide range of smart lecterns and podiums (TecPodium) that provides fully integrated multimedia solution to manage AV equipment in training and educational facilities at all levels. The TecPodium product line is an important addition to Modul IT Solutions.

Modul IT will supply designated resources to market the TecPodium line of products throughout its marketing channels in Europe. Utilizing its vast local contacts, the distribution agreement between the companies will allow faster supply with even better customer service and support throughout the continent.

“This agreement is of great benefit to both companies and to our customers” says Aviv Brosilovski, CEO of Tecom Electronics. “TecPodium products will now be more easily accessible to our European customers via Modul IT distribution and logistics capabilities in Europe”.

Haim Elallouf, Modul IT Director of Sales said “We are very excited on the new addition to our product line. We will launch and exhibit Tecom products at the coming Integrated Systems Europe 2014 allowing customers hands-on demos of the TecPodiums and its’ capabilities, for a more realistic experience, thus enabling better decision making when looking for classroom and training rooms turnkey solutions”.

Tecom will be displaying the TecPodium Lecterns and its latest technology at ISE 2014, on February 4-6 at the RAI, Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Tecom will be in Booth # 2-E60.

About Tecom
Tecom Electronics is a dynamic company continuously developing and evolving their products to provide the simplest yet most technologically advanced solution to managing Audio Visual equipment in training and educational facilities. Tecom replaces generic podiums in the classroom and boardroom with a more interactive and easy to use technological experience.
www.tecpodium.com

About Modul ITModul IT Solutions is a Pro AV import, distribution and logistics service provider with operations throughout Europe and beyond. With many years of experience, Modul IT offers its partners a unique gateway into the market at the same time as offering customers a broad range of both innovative and established solutions.
www.modulit.eu

Renkus-Heinz Powers Top French TV Station’s Presentations

Paris, France – December 2013…State-owned French radio and television broadcaster France Télévisions Publicité is one of the of the largest journalistic organizations in France, and as a member of the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) since 1950, one of the longest-standing. The station’s Paris studio recently installed a Renkus-Heinz loudspeaker system for its screening and presentation room.

Created by sound designer Terry Nelson of Switzerland-based Studio Equipment company, the new loudspeakers were installed by the studio’s technical director Christophe Scherrer and head of technology Toni Livaudais as a dedicated speech system, replacing the studio’s previous arrangement of running podium presentation microphones through the room’s surround loudspeaker system.

“It was always a problematic arrangement,” says Nelson. “There were constant problems with feedback, and the podium itself has a strong acoustic resonance. But the aesthetics of a new system were also very important. They wanted a discrete but very clear-sounding audio system that would also deal with the room’s acoustical issues.”

A nice pair copy 2Nelson initially specified two compact Renkus-Heinz TRX61 complex conic systems to be mounted on the opposing surfaces of a pillar at the entrance to the room: one to the side of the screen and facing into the room and another for an ‘overspill’ seating area to stage right. The team also upgraded the existing loudspeaker processor to a Klark Teknik DN9848 to serve both the screen system and the new speech system.

“The TRX61s are ideally suited for this installation,” says Nelson. “Their coverage is nicely focused, and they blend in well with the room. People have commented on their very natural sound, especially with voices. This was especially important, as the station has to deal with all kinds of presenters and interviewees, both professional and inexperienced.”

Nelson reports the client was quite happy with just two TRX61s but later requested an additional two speakers to broaden the coverage. “It’s a small project but we think of it as quite a success story, especially as Toni is a total sound fanatic.”

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Headquartered in Foothill Ranch, California, Renkus-Heinz, Inc. is the worldwide leader in the design and manufacture of audio operations networks, digitally steerable arrays, powered and non-powered loudspeakers, system specific electronics and fully integrated Reference Point Array systems.

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