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Digital Signage at Candlestick Park, Part 1

May 8, 2012 11:46 AM, With Bennett Liles

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And I think that was the AT-HD-V12 distribution amps?


And those are 1x2, right?

That’s correct.

And the HDSync, what were those EDID emulators?

Yes we did those as well and a combination of long HDMI cables running up to 50ft. [Timestamp: 5:23]

HDMI obviously doesn’t like to normally go a long way without some sort of extenders in the line or cascaded DA’s or something so were there any special tricks or gear you had to use for long cable runs?

No, but we have in the past had a few problems obviously the distance of 50 ft. on HDMI is fine. We’ve not had any issues with that but when you run these cables through some really small nooks and crannies that you have to fish through we’ve found that where we’ve tried cheaper HDMI cables in the past they usually get damaged when over bent and they become unusable so if you can imagine all those little wires in the cable if you bend it too far it can break inside and the cable’s useless. [Timestamp: 6:08]

And you don’t know that until after you’ve done a lot of work and tried to put a signal through it and then find you’ve got to do something over.

That’s right, sure have.

Now with the stadium situation, that must have been kind of interesting at times at trying to get to some places where you’ve got to pull HDMI cable through it’s not exactly like pulling a piece of rope through—I think we’re hung on something so you just pull harder.

That’s right.

It can take more people along the line to substitute for being able to use any brute force.

It certainly can be a time consuming exercise that’s for sure. [Timestamp: 6:37]

Now what was the most frequent problem in dealing with HDMI signals to that many simultaneous monitors? I know you had to be able to keep all the monitors and the displays awake since with menus there’s not much video activity going on.

That’s right, a common problem there is where the slate screens just can’t detect the signal and it obviously keeps putting it into standby mode so obviously Hot Plug five volts is a definitely an issue there but with the Atlona equipment we can maintain that five volts which prevents that issue. [Timestamp: 7:07]

And these I take it are strictly read by the crowd there’s no touch screen interactivity going on.

No, this is a complete passive based network. Obviously through the content we can incorporate interaction with social networking like Twitter. We can also generate QR codes as well but also through SMS marketing campaigns and so on we can put content out there that enables the fans to participate in competitions and so on through sending an answer or a key word through a five digit SMS code. [Timestamp: 7:40]

That’s a very big place and there was a lot of ground to cover. What was the timeframe on the job? They have a lot of events going on at Candlestick. Did you have to squeeze this in between other things?

Well it was quite lucky really and mostly one thing I’ve noticed about doing stadium installations is you certainly keep fit because walking throughout the concourses from one concession to another concession can be long way but the installation itself, we did that in July 2011 and it took just the one week and luckily it was kind of before football season there were no other events like concerts and so on so we had the luxury of getting that done without the need to work around anything. So basically from when we got a signed contract to go ahead and get the solution implemented the project was delivered within about an eight week period. So we moved fairly quickly on that. [Timestamp: 8:26]

Well, that’s not too bad. I guess when you get into a big stadium like that and it’s just you and your guys around and nobody else it would seem to be sort of a lonely looking place.

It sure can and a bit cold as well with the breeze blowing in off the bay. [Timestamp: 8:40]

That’s right, the stadium is known for strange wind and air currents coming off the bay and doing funny things with flying footballs during the games. I really appreciate your being here Kevin for part one, Kevin Goldsmith from Ping HD in Denver and we’ll be getting together for programming and testing the Candlestick signage system. Thanks for being with us.

You’re welcome. Thank you.

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