Kicking the Bucket of Remotes
The Albion Park RSL Memorial Club in New South Wales features 50 televisions across its bar, bistro, and function spaces. Until recently, employees carried a bucket of remotes around to all TVs, turning each one on and changing channels as needed — a process that took at least an hour a day. It was time for an overhaul, with the top priority being ease of use. Integrator Cabling & Wireless turned to RTI.
1 x XP-6s Advanced Control Processor
1 x AD-16x Audio Matrix Switch
14 x PCM-4 Ethernet Multi-Purpose I/O Control Modules
60 x Virsa IR Emitters
1 x KX10 10-Inch In-Wall Touchpanel
3 x RSP-1 Remote Source Wallplates
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The Returned and Services League (RSL) of Australia is a support organization for men and women who have served or are serving in the Australian Defence Force. RSL-licensed clubs exist throughout the country and serve in part as social hubs and recreation centers for their communities.
The Albion Park RSL Memorial Club in New South Wales is a place where locals can go for dining, drinks, concerts, golf, bingo, raffles and casino games, and so much more. There are also rental spaces available for functions of every size, from family gatherings to corporate and charity events.
Before: Underperforming and Overly Complicated
Albion Park RSL’s TV and audio setup was underperforming and overly complicated. Cabling was unreliable and very sparse. All audio was being played over the fire alarm system, which sounded awful and was either all on or all off. And throughout the club’s bar, bistro, and function spaces are 50 televisions encompassing about 10 different brands — all different models, some with discrete IR and others without.
It was common practice for an employee to carry a bucket of remotes around to all 50 TVs, turning each one on and changing channels as needed. It’s estimated that this process would take an employee at least an hour a day, considering the various on/off times required.
It was time for an overhaul. Top priority was that the system had to be easy to use.
After: Automated, Hands-Off Control
In its first hospitality installation of this size using RTI, integrator Cabling & Wireless gave Albion Park RSL’s TV system an upgrade, and RTI played a starring role.
“Because of the number of different brands of screens already installed, IR was the only viable option, and only RTI offers the modularity to expand this much IR effectively,” said Andrew Watt, AV BDM of Cabling & Wireless.
At the heart of the RTI control system are an AD-16x audio matrix switch, 14 PCM-4 Ethernet multi-purpose I/O control modules, 60 Virsa IR emitters, and a KX10 10-inch in-wall touchpanel.
Cabling & Wireless started by replacing the club’s cabling with dedicated RG-6 and Cat 6 to every screen. In an innovative design, rather than using two-core cabling or putting equipment in the field, the integrator used Cat 6 cabling and RJ45 to 3.5mm jack adapters to extend IR out to each TV. This setup provided a more reliable connection, was quicker and neater, and allows for an upgrade path to IP video/control in the future. Sliding shelves house the PCM-4 modules, which made it possible to stack 50 televisions’ worth of IR control into just 4 rack units (RU).
Albion Park RSL also wanted audio to be separated by zones, so Cabling & Wireless installed new speakers into seven zones around the club, which allows independent source selection and volume control.
Cabling & Wireless also installed three RSP-1 remote source wallplates, which make is possible for outside organizations to provide their own audio into a hired space.
The system is programmed for maximum flexibility and ease of use. Schedules are set to turn on TVs and audio in each area at different times of day on different days of the week. For example, an ode plays at 6pm every night out of respect for fallen soldiers. The RTI system automatically mutes all audio in the club at 6pm and switches back afterward.
Through the touch screen, employees can control every TV individually or in groups, but only if they choose to do so. Most of the time, there’s no need for staff to interact with the system at all. And because of all the TV brands and models involved, Cabling & Wireless created a user-settable sync page to correct any errors with power toggling.
‘It Just Works’
Thanks to RTI’s sophisticated, user-friendly control solution, Albion Park RSL Memorial Club’s TV and audio control has been transformed. The ability to schedule all control functions means employees save at least 365 hours per year, and staff responsibility is reduced because there’s no need for them to learn which channel is on which modulators or figure out which TV can view what. And the club sees power savings because TVs aren’t left on overnight.
“When talking to my contact at Albion Park about the system, he said, ‘It just works.’ — which is probably the best feedback we can get,” Watt said.
Perhaps best of all? Albion Park RSL can hide that bucket of remotes.
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