Eircom install JBL/Crown/BSS in €750m HQ
Meritec are proud to announce Panasonic Displays, AMX control products and JBL, BSS and Crown audio products have been installed in the new state-of-the-art international headquarters of Eircom, Ireland’s largest telecommunications company.
In constructing the €750m Heuston South Quarter (HSQ) development in South Central Dublin, eircom turned to Ascough Consulting Engineers (working with architects Anthony Reddy Associates) to act as the project’s building services consultants, and the consultants, in turn, hired Meritec to meet the complex AV routing, interactivity and control systems.
The 1HSQ development is an eco-friendly environment designed to the highest level of energy efficiency, and an advanced multimedia infrastructure assumed top priority.
The audio visual sub-contract was worth around €1 million, and incorporated a wide range of multi-room and multi-purpose A/V systems.
Meritec, who were chosen from the six companies tendering, sourced most of their audio requirements from the Harman Pro catalogue.
Sound Technology’s Irish sub-distributor, Reynolds of Raphoe, provided Meritec with a range of BSS Soundweb London BLU digital signal processors, Crown amplification and JBL Control Contractor series loudspeakers.
Ronan McLaughlin’s integration company was tasked with designing, specifying, and installing comprehensive audio-visual and subsystems under two separate contracts. The more challenging of these was to deliver the futuristic NGX (Next Generation Experience) Customer Demonstration Area, while they were also tasked with equipping 26 meeting and conference rooms, a main boardroom on the top floor and an auditorium.
The NGX was the brainchild of Mike Davidson, Marketing Director, eircom Corporate Markets. Explaining the concept, he stated “eircom has long-established relationships with ICT executives. Working together, we jointly define and implement complex ICT solutions to meet technical requirements. However, ICT is also a fundamental enabler for operational managers to enhance customer service, drive revenue growth, maximise cost efficiency and manage business risk. It’s therefore vital that both ICT and business executives understand what ICT delivers in terms of business outcomes, by clearing away the jargon and focusing on the experience.
“NGX was therefore created as a cross-functional workshop environment, to present ICT in context by enabling business and ICT execs to work together to address strategic business issues.”
The latest interactive audio-visual platforms have been deployed to support these strategic workshops, while the centre also allows customers to immerse themselves in a simulated home or business environment, and visualise best practice solutions via easy-to-use pre-programmed computerized controllers.
Here visitors are greeted by two 103-inch flat screen display panels which broadcast a wide variety of content, and an interactive multi-touch screen table. Also included are HD videoconferencing which provides a real-time link to strategic partners and industry experts located around the world.
Meritec’s advanced digital screen solutions have been matched in the audio domain.
Reynolds of Rathoe has been supplying Meritec with Harman Pro components for a number of years.
Ronan McLaughlin states, “We were keen to source high-quality audio product throughout. Harman staged a roadshow in Ireland which a couple of us attended, and it was clear they had product which would be ideal for this project At the same time we talked to Reynolds and between them everyone was very helpful and moved things forward tremendously.”
Meritec were attracted to specifying a BSS Audio’s new generation Soundweb London BLU-160 in the NGX as an audio routing matrix over the five zones, configuring it 8-in/8-out. Knowing they would be placing the entire installation under two AMX touch screen controllers, they were impressed with the signal quality and the fact that it would communicate with AMX via RS232.
“This was a big deal,” says Ronan McLaughlin. “You can make your settings, call up presets and adjust the volume accordingly for local zonal control. We have used advanced programming to control the level of access.”
The BLU-160 takes five inputs from an Extron CrossPoint matrix switcher, which handles the video routing and is in turn fed by various computer video, IPTV and content management signals. Further Soundweb inputs are provided by two mic inputs and video conferencing. A second BLU-160 (and BLU-120 I/O expander) is located in the Boardroom where there is a requirement to mix ten boundary mics, podium mic and radio mic — as well as separate video conferencing.
In both the NGX and Boardroom, JBL loudspeakers are driven by CDi 1000 amplifiers. In the former 17 Control 26CT and three rebated Control 25T’s provide discreet, crystal-clear directional audio.
Says Ronan McLaughlin, “We opted for the Control 26 for the SPL, distribution and tonal quality — and I have to say it’s top quality. JBL is always our default brand for high quality audio.”
Multiples of the smaller JBL 24CT recessed ceiling speakers are used in the boardroom, alongside projection and video conferencing cameras on a ceiling lift.
Summing up, Mike Davidson is satisfied that the business objectives have been met, and Ronan McLaughlin added, “We are delighted to have been involved in such a significant development at eircom’s new corporate office, enabling them to make best use of next generation technology.”