Parade College is a Catholic Boys’ School with a reputation for excellence. The college has been serving the community for over a hundred years with the focus of its educational program having always been the development of young boys into valuable members of society through intellectual and physical education.
They have a large multi-purpose basketball stadium that they use for large school meetings including assemblies. The school uses a sizeable double basketball court area and brings together all of its students on a regular basis for assemblies. The space is beautiful with plenty of skylights for natural light to fill it in a warm and welcoming manner. One of the key design requirements of their project was that they needed projection facilities which could be used in an environment filled with that bright natural light.
The nature of the room also meant that they needed projection facilities in several parts of the court as well as being able to move these screens so that they wouldn’t impair physical activities in the space. It also needed to be a very simple setup that the school could use easily without dedicating a full-time audio-video specialist to monitoring the equipment when it was in use. Of course, there was also a focus on value for money and keeping the costs within the school’s budget.
The initial focus was on finding projectors to do the job but it quickly became apparent that projectors weren’t going to be the right solution for the budget and the space. Projection equipment would struggle to remain visible in the brightness of the basketball court and would be greatly more expensive than a better alternative – the video wall.
The video wall meant that by breaking down the image into separate parts we could create a very large image at a much lower outlay than using a single screen. The video wall would break down into component parts (rather like a lego set) to be used to construct smaller screens if necessary (the 4 x 4 wall will break down into 3 sets of 2 x 2 to be used in different locations in the basketball court). In the end the screen offers a 184” diagonal space with more than 5,000 pixels of horizontal resolution – offering unbelievably good picture quality that can be seen from anywhere within the room.
The equipment was a mixture of Samsung Matrix ID video wall panels (including some clever use of dummy panels and floor stands to ensure that it is kept at the right height) and an integrated Kramer VP-728 presentation scaler to allow for a single input device and to keep image transitions crystal clear.
The school is amazed at the quality of the picture; they feel that the size of the final image is so good that any one of their 2,000 students and staff can clearly see what’s going on – no matter where they are sitting in the assembly.