Behind Every Great Venue are….

29 Nov

Today, when we think of Rogers Place in Edmonton we see this:

and think of this:

Oilers salute fans at first NHL game in Rogers Place

Oilers salute fans at first NHL game in Rogers Place


Yet, my visit this morning was about this:

A behind the sceneslook of the video production, tech equipment, server room, 1250 screens and Media Centre in the Hockey Hall of Fame.

  • The state-of-the-art video production facility was designed and installed by Matrix Video, simultaneously with the Digital Signage/IPTV system.
  • The central equipment room consists of 18 full-height racks including Sony HD cameras, Fujinon lenses, Imagine Communications routing, Ross switching and CG, Christie’s Pandora’s Box for the extraordinary on-ice projection and a Blackcam specially designed track-camera that is under-mounted on the huge centre-hung scoreboard. The camera is on an 11-metre track and is capable of traveling up to 4 metres per second!
  • There are six (6!) Ross Xpression systems to drive the Arena’s remarkable LED system. That includes the multiple exterior boards, the spectacular screen in Ford Hall, both LED ribbons and the centre-hung scoreboard.
  • Matrix had staff from every one of their offices assisting in installing the over 1250 screens located in Rogers Place! No subcontractors here.
  • The main and upper concourses have over 200 screens that are in a 1×3 videowall configuration that allows for two separate advertising opportunities and for the game in progress to be seen at all times. This unique model required significant configuration to ensure that synchronization happens seamlessly over the network throughout the entire arena.
  • The Media Centre in the Hockey Hall of Fame is home to two 4×4 videowalls that were calibrated to produce the most colour-calibrated perfect image for television.

So you can see how “geeky” and giddy I was to walk through a building of this magnitude and really get an idea for how all of the signage works, what it can do, how it can be configured, and so on. As a season ticket holder of both the Oilers and Oil Kings, I was familiar with the facility, now, with this behind the scenes tour, I can appreciate how the “fan’ experience is enhanced with all of this technology. I also take away some ideas as to how I can share this within the school division that I work in. What kind of experiences with digital signage should we be looking into for our current schools as well as School 2 in Spruce Grove? What kinds of skills and competencies should we be developing in our staff and students? Also important is the working relationship and open communication between your IT department and other departments and school sites. I liaise closely with IT so they can understand the educational point of view, but I also get to hear and see the amazing work to ensure that our staff and students have access to resources and global/local opportunities to connect with each other electronically.

Rogers Place - TVs under scoreboard for Coaches

Rogers Place – TVs under scoreboard for Coaches

Ice School classroom

Ice School classroom

Interview platform and digital screen background

Interview platform and digital screen background

A sincere thanks to Matrix Video Communications and Rogers Place for the tour. It was unforgettable.



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