Win, Place, Or Show

Win, Place, Or Show
  • WILMINGTON, DE-Delaware Park Racetrack, Slots & Golf in Wilmington, DE is the first out of the gate with an 82-cube videowall, the largest on the East Coast. The videowall system was designed and engineered by Electrosonic Systems to help realize the vision of Christer Farr, senior vice president at Delaware Park.

The videowall installed by Electrosonic at the Delaware Park Racetrack consists of 82 50-inch Hitachi VideoCubes which are active seven days a week from early morning to late night.
The giant videowall, for general admission patrons, is located on the Race Book level of the Racing Club House where it displays simulcasts of the track's live racing, satellite feeds from other U.S. race courses, and feeds from ESPN. It can also be used to promote the track and its offerings and to show special non-racing sporting events. It is active seven days a week from 9:30 a.m. to 1 a.m.

"We have plasma screens and TVs here at Delaware Park, at our Ocean Downs racetrack in Ocean City, MD and at our Cambridge, MD OTB," said Fran McLaughlin, Delaware Park's manager of AV services. "But we wanted to create a new racing experience for our patrons. Now, when they walk in they say, 'Wow! It looks beautiful!' We're planning future renovations so we can add more of the same technology throughout the building."

The videowall consists of 82 50-inch Hitachi VideoCubes (ES50-116CMW); two 4 x 9 configurations flank a 2 x 5 configuration above a mutuel tellers' station. Typically, the large wings display eight 2 x 2 cubes with four single cubes down the middle; the narrow strip of cubes above the tellers' station may display two 2 x 2 cubes and two single cubes or 10 single cubes.

"The Delaware Park display is a very large videowall," noted Jim Landy, Electrosonic's northeast regional sales and business development manager. "We're committed to supporting our network of dealers, through which we secured this job. After a complete renovation of the space was done, we completed the videowall installation in two weeks, in time for the first day of the racing season. Our design expertise and consultative recommendations ensured a dynamic result from the beginning. Electrosonic is capable of completing large, complex projects such as this in very short time frames. This is not the first time we have completed a project of this scale in a very short installation period."

Electrosonic, one of Hitachi's largest distributors and service partners, recommended Hitachi VisionCubes for their bright, lifelike image quality and consistent and uniform color; their unprecedented stability has meant little or no adjustment has been required after the install. Hitachi's ES50 VisionCubes are the world's first high-definition LCoS (liquid crystal on silicon) rear-projection display cubes. With a leading edge, 3-chip optical engine, the LCoS VisionCube boasts the narrowest pixel line available in rear-projection display cubes. The pixel structure is not visible to the viewer, even at close viewing distances.

"Hitachi's LCoS technology makes its VisionCubes by far the brightest and most reliable 50-inch display cubes," noted Landy. "The VisionCubes' unique 3-chip design ensures color uniformity is maintained at all brightness levels. And while the videowall is now receiving satellite feeds from other tracks in standard definition, it will be able to display HD telecasts in the future."

"About five years ago we had CRT monitors at Delaware Park but CRT technology can't compete with current cube technology," said McLaughlin. "The Hitachi VisionCubes have much brighter pictures and afford better viewing from every angle: people can almost see them from 180 degrees. Delaware Park's owner William Rickman, Jr., really loves this videowall."
Hitachi's commitment to Electrosonic and the project further contributed to the project's success, as they dispatched a factory team from the U.S. and Japan to support Electrosonic's installation efforts.

"We wanted to offer our racing patrons the best viewing medium in the U.S. By working with Hitachi and Electrosonic we achieved that," stated Delaware Park's Christer Farr.

The AVNetwork staff are storytellers focused on the professional audiovisual and technology industry. Their mission is to keep readers up-to-date on the latest AV/IT industry and product news, emerging trends, and inspiring installations.