AV Control Systems
Feb 25, 2013 4:08 PM, By Bennett Liles
The growing market in AV control systems reflects both the rapid deployment of various AV components, A/D, in the corporate world, academia, and industry. With the trend toward unified IP control and monitoring, more devices than ever are being manufactured or adapted for IR, serial, and Ethernet-control interfaces. Our survey includes the whole range for these devices and illustrates the growing sophistication of AV control systems’ design and application.
Drawing its power from Alcorn McBride's WinScript Live operating system with Timeline and Redundant Mode, the V16 Pro frame accurate show controller can run complex synchronized presentations, theme park setups, and museum exhibits through 16 serial ports, 16 opto-isolated inputs and 16 relay outputs with RS-485 and MIDI I/O. The unit’s dual network ports allow control and monitoring from anywhere and multiple video players can be frame-locked to NTSC video sync. Its I/Os are protected against voltage surges and short circuits while the 80-character LCD on the front panel provides control and programming information. Front-panel LEDs show the signal condition of serial ports, outputs, and inputs.
For a compact solution for controlling projectors, display panels and motorized gear, Altinex has equipped the Neutron CP500-110 open architecture AV device mini controller with two bi-directional RS-232 ports, two IR connections, two contact closure terminals, two sensor inputs, and an Ethernet port for programming, monitoring and control. LEDs on the front panel show power, Ethernet link activity, and port activation. The unit can be operated through multiple Altinex MultiTouch color touchpanels and it can be set up to react to a wide variety of sensor triggers and activate one or more AV devices including signal switchers, Blu-ray players, receivers, screens, and window blinds.
The NI-700 NetLinx integrated controller from AMX is designed to handle the AV control requirements of a single room with its 304 MIPS processor, two configurable RS-232/422/485 serial ports, IR/serial port, IR receiver port, and four digital I/O channels. It can also communicate on AxLink, ICSNet, and Ethernet networks. The unit’s front-panel LEDs show communication activity, connection status, speeds along with mode information and it features AMX device discovery to facilitate installation. There is also a front-panel programming port that has parameters that are set with a configuration DIP switch. The matte black case is metal and stands a single rack unit high.
Housing a 32-bit engine and a 32-bit pipeline memory, the Aurora Multimedia WACI NX-22 supports HTML, DHTML, JAVA, FLASH, ASP, and Visual Basic for control applications and it includes an Event Manager for running server side functions from a web-based interface. With optional hardware, two WACI NX-22 controllers can be mounted in a single rack space. Each unit features two RJ-45 network ports, one of which supports PoE. It includes USB, two serial ports, two IR outputs, one IR input, and two digital I/Os. There is a micro SD slot for expansion, IR learner, and a 32-bit clock/calendar, along with Web and FTP network access. The front panel has an LCD for setup and diagnostics, LED indicators for power, IR I/O, serial, relay closures, digital I/O, menu navigation buttons, and the USB port.
For digital signage control applications, ClearOne designed the compact VL9300-IP AV decoder with the ability to control a large array of displays over the network with its HDMI 1.3 compatible DVI video output, PoE capability, IR receiver/GPIO terminal, and its IR emitter/RS-232 output. Equipped with StreamNet technology, deployed units can keep all zones synced to within 500 microseconds. Equipped with a VESA 100mm bolt pattern, the VL9300 has a range of mounting options on its own or using an included surface mount bracket. Features include an on-screen user interface, HDCP diagnostics, and SD/HD video decoding.
The new Pro3 next generation control system from Crestron employs the powerful Core3 OS to allow control and monitoring of everything from boardroom AV systems up to total building management. The unit’s onboard 1GB RAM and 4GB flash memory can be expanded to 1TB and it houses an e-Control web server. Wireless links include Crestron Mobile control apps for iPhone, iPad, and Android. It provides control connections on multiple RS-232 ports, IR/serial, relay and Versiport I/O ports. For growing applications, there are three built-in 3-Series control card expansion slots while the front panel offers a color LCD display along with a USB computer console port and the PRO3 is IPv6 ready.
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