Dodger Stadium Video Upgrade, Part 2
May 16, 2013 11:38 AM, With Bennett Liles
And since they were using the VisionSoft graphics app from ANC Sports, I guess you were training people on all that.
Yeah, and what was nice was we knew that we were going to be facing some tight deadlines once we got to the tail end of the project leading into Opening Day with the various construction elements, the broadcast control room. So what we did on this project was we actually brought in the VisionSoft system as well as the Vista Spyder multi-image viewer that we used to parcel up and do the picture-in-picture and layout effects on the two main video screens. We had both of those pieces onsite months in advance and we set up a virtual control room in one of their office suites so that their staff could begin practicing with the software and the integration of the various pieces, and also start to play with their design looks and really get ahead of the curve there so that we weren’t waiting until the last second, you know, the last week leading up to Opening Day to get them some seat time. [Timestamp: 7:50]
Once you get everything working and all of the people trained, there’s a huge amount of preparation that goes into preparing for a game. They have to get all of the sponsors’ things lined up. So I guess that once they’re all set up, doing the game is really the easy part.
Actually it even breaks down into more of a modular piece than that. It’s really the lead up to a home stand or a series that has a lot of time to make sure the programming’s right. Once you get into game two, game three, game four of a given series or a home stand, a lot of the content remains the same. It’s the same visiting team and you’re almost doing a rinse-and-repeat type of game presentation at that point. But in the case of a new display package like this, plus a new control room everything’s new so every bit of video, graphic animation, still, sponsor, it is all new. So content creation began back in probably November or December and it takes a good four months to get everything built and ready for Opening Day. Once we’re into the season, the game day operations staff is at the ballpark a minimum of three hours before the game to do a run through and test out the system and make sure that everything that needs to be there is there and that the displays are running the way they should. [Timestamp: 9:05]
And LED displays generate heat. You’ve got a warm climate at Dodger Stadium, you’ve got direct sunlight. How’s the ventilation on those big displays? How do you make sure they don’t overheat?
Well, any outdoor display is going to be susceptible to the effects of the environment. The good news with L.A. is while it is generally warm throughout the year, Dodgers Stadium – Chavez Ravine – doesn’t get to the really taxing 110 degrees that we might find in places like Phoenix or sort of the double whammy that we had in Nashville with the Titans project where it was roughly 100 degrees for a lot of the summer and early fall with 80 to 90 percent humidity. So in the case of the Dodgers, it’s going to be a relatively low-humidity environment with a nice, seasonably warm temperature. What we do is we take a look at the screen size; we take a look at the power draw and the anticipated brightness of the screen in a day game or a night game. We do a thermal analysis, how many BTUs are going to be put out and how much heat is going to need to be vented from the scoreboard structure behind the video screen, and then we work with our HVAC subcontractors to put together an airflow plan. In the case of the Dodgers, all we needed was forced air. We just needed fans and ventilation. In the case of some warmer environments, Phoenix or Las Vegas, you actually need to create your scoreboard in one big air-conditioned space, which adds, as you can imagine, a whole other level of complexity and cost. But I think the Dodgers is actually a great environment for putting in a video screen. [Timestamp: 10:45]
And that’s not all you put in there. That’s a huge stadium and a complete renovation. What else is ANC Sports providing for the stadium?
We did the video screens, we did the VisionSoft system in the control room. We actually put in a new scoring system, so all of the play-by-play and pitch-by-pitch scoring for the team and the broadcasters is being done on an ANC system. We have a signage package. There’s going to be two new, Iconic 17ft. diameter circular signs at the top of each of the scoreboard structures as well as new home plate and first base and third base field-level rotational signage, which is totaling a little bit over 140 linear feet. It’s really a brand new stadium. When people walk in they are, a lot of folks aren’t going to recognize large aspects of it. It definitely is Dodger Stadium. It’s the same beautiful view from home plate out towards the hills, but everything is getting a really nice, brand new paint job and technology overhaul. [Timestamp: 11:46]
It’s great when it all comes together and you see how much the fans enjoy this when they come in and see it all for the first time. I know this was a biggie, but what other projects are coming up for ANC Sports?
Yeah, well at the same time we’re doing this Dodger project we’re also participating in the final stage of the display renovation for the Seattle Mariners at Safeco Field. We’re providing the integration of VisionSoft into their control room, and they’ve added a new video screen this year, which is going to be the largest video screen in all of baseball in terms of square footage. It’s over 200ft. wide by more than 55ft. tall. From a resolution standpoint, it’s actually two 1080p images side by side in one display. So you can look at it as two HD 1080p’s or you can look at it as the top half of a 4K image. So really going to do some interesting stuff with VisionSoft and the statistics on a pallette that’s that size. And then as we move on into the summer and fall we’ve got some large collegiate and professional arena projects that are going to start kicking off just as soon as baseball’s finished. [Timestamp: 13:02]
There’s a lot of competition and people from other stadiums are going to be somewhat envious when they see this whole display system in action and you’ll probably have some more work to do.
Chris Mascatello from ANC Sports it was great listening to how this whole new video system went into Dodger Stadium and thanks for telling us about how it all got done.
Thank you very much.
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