The large-scale project includes huddle spaces, training rooms and conference centers throughout 10,000 square feet of office space. The spaces would be used for vendors to easily train or present to customers. Business Interiors had a number of integrators offer solutions for the expansive project, sure in the capabilities that it needed the rooms to have but open to what type of technology could ultimately achieve the goals. Corona Integrated Systems took a different approach than most, favoring a certain amount of interactivity in the AV solution.
“They had several companies came in and make various pitches, but no one addressed what their real needs were,” says Keith Gibson, vice president of Corona Integrated Systems. “They wanted to throw up a simple ‘monitor connected to a computer’ type systems. We went in and started asking a lot of questions, and we finally got to what they wanted.”
Corona brought in representatives from Kramer to show the VIA, a wireless collaboration solution that offers presentation capabilities with the click of a button. Users can connect to VIA through a USB dongle and stream content from their devices up to monitors without downloading any type of software. The price point and simplicity of the VIA system ultimately led Business Insiders to choose Corona for the project.
“When they saw what it could do, they were in,” says Gibson.
Time was of the essence for the project, as Corona wasn’t able to start the project until late October, while Business Insiders planned to open the rooms for operation around Christmas time. To make matters more complicated, walls had already begun to be constructed, and were done so using a proprietary wall system from Dirtt, a sustainable construction company that makes modular whiles, fitting together like traditional millwork with wall elements that allow work surfaces, overheads, displays and any other object to be mounted seamlessly off the surface without damage.
“The televisions are actually built into the glass,” says Gibson of the LG, Samsung and Sharp displays installed at Business Interiors. “We couldn’t put commercial quality panels in there because of depth, so we did hang the TVs inside of there. It was new to us, and it was so new to the building inspector – he’d never seen anything like that, and everything has to be UL rated in Birmingham. So that was a nightmare proving that everything going into the wall was UL rated.”
Working in tandem with Dirtt, Corona Integrated Systems built a networked, custom audio-visual system with digital signage, whole-house control and end point audio. For that end point audio, Corona was tasked with finding a networked mixer and amplifier solution to integrate with facility-wide control systems. After extensive research, Corona turned to LineQ, a North American distributor specializing in IP-based end point systems for networked audio.
LineQ brought in compact CA200V digital mixing amplifiers from Ecler to deliver two output zones and six audio inputs with a full set of intelligent remote control options. The devices, networked with Media Sign Pro digital signage and control solutions from Savant Systems, powers corporate presentations from a simple setup with two microphones; and four separate inputs with ducking and paging features. Ecler also provided software for additional control options from computers as well as built-in touch panels. The digital signage adds a personal touch, with custom welcome messages and meeting information for audiences outside the meeting rooms awaiting the next presentation. The Ecler amplifiers bring additional flexibility through a 70-volt configuration that enables widespread distribution to multiple Tannoy loudspeakers. The flexibility of the Ecler amplifiers has been so valuable that Corona expects to replace other amplifiers installed as part of the original design with CA200V units moving forward.
“The credenzas that were originally specified were originally nineteen inches deep, and when we got there we found out they were thirteen,” says Gibson. “I just started looking for something that would give me 70-volt capability, some switching capabilities, and allow me to have microphone inputs for conferencing. The only thing I could find was the Ecler product.”
Business Insiders is now using the many spaces for training, presentation and conferencing.