Scholastically Minded

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NEW YORK, NY—Sometimes all it takes is a little water to get a renovation going.

Such was the case for a recent revamping of the venerable 4,000- square foot Scholastic Auditorium in New York’s SoHo neighborhood. After sustaining water damage from a pipe leak above the control room, the 271-seat Auditorium underwent a systems revamping by Lloyd Kozel, senior designer, AVTEG Consulting Engineers, East Northport, NY, with installation by ACE Communications, a Tritech Company, Garden City, NY.

The $313,000 system features a Di-VentiX and RKD8022T by Analog Way, dealing with sources including computer, DigiBeta/BetaSP, DVD, Blu-ray, 16:9 video cameras, mini DV/DVCAM/HDV, and VHS projecting on a choice of screens, a downstage projection screen, for use as a backdrop for a presenter, or an upstage screen for cinema events. A stacked pair of Panasonic projectors accommodates either scenario

“There was an extensive architectural renovation that resulted in a beautiful tiered auditorium,” Kozel said. “It’s the only venue with those properties in the vicinity.”

The client, Scholastic Corporation, wanted a multi-use system that could serve live performance

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(Above) Scholastic wanted a multi-use system that serves live performance and presentations. (Below) An Analog Way switching unit is at the heart of the presentation system, and is versatile in pulling up, combining, and fading images from one to another. and presentations, surround sound screenings, videoconferencing, and myriad other events, he said. “It is now available for corporate and commercial rental, reaching out beyond the original user-operated system to one that can also be outsourced.”

Meeting these requirements for inhouse functionality with needed versatility for guest users was a large undertaking, Kozel added. “The main Auditorium operator, Colin Poellet, gave us direction on how the system should be laid out. As consultants, we tend to

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be especially sensitive to situations where there is an actual operator.”

The main Analog Way switching unit was selected for its high quality, he said. “It’s the heart of the presentation system and versatile in pulling up, combining, and fading images from one to another.”

Finally, the system comes down to the operator being comfortable with the process. “We spent a lot of time reviewing signal flow and ergonomics,” Kozel said. “Our AV drawings are point to point specific, showing all connectivity, every nut and bolt. That serves as a check for us and allows the contractor to bid on something completely- designed, without gaps.”

“We had to work in a finished space but we knew the cable paths and exactly where to go to run the additional cabling for the camera updates, so it was an efficient project for everybody,” said ACE director of technical operations, Stefanos Stefanidis. “The cameras were upgraded from 4.3 non-hi-def models to 16 x 9 hi-def cameras. We also had to change one of the two projection screens.”

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