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Brightsign Cityscape Abu Dhabi

20 synchronised BrightSign HD media players at Cityscape Exhibition in Abu Dhabi
October 2010
The most prominent exhibit at the recent Cityscape exhibition in Abu Dhabi was a vast model of the government Urban Planning Council’s vision for the capital of the United Arab Emirates in the year 2030.

Although it measured a huge 22m x 18m, its size was not its only remarkable feature.  The model formed the centre piece of a multimedia presentation, launching the master plan for the city as it expands over the next two decades.

An 11 metre screen carried a short movie running on three edge-blended projectors, with sound tracks in English and Arabic.  Simultaneously a grid of 16 ceiling-mounted projectors brought the model to life.  The synchronised show highlighted areas featured in the movie, animated the transport links, and used moving graphics to create an absorbing and exciting multimedia experience.

The technology, designed and installed by London visual communication specialists GHA Group, was the culmination of more than two years development work and the installation of a number of smaller model animation projects in London, Abu Dhabi and Jeddah. 

The challenges were daunting.  At this scale, standard resolution images spread over such a large area would have looked extremely pixellated, so the decision was made at an early stage to create ultra high resolution movie masters and to subdivide the footage into sixteen 1024 x 768 pixel rectangles.  To run that sort of resolution in real time would have required considerable computing power, so GHA decided to use 16 separate high definition media players running in sync.  Three more players provided the video images for the projection screen, and one further player carried the sound track and acted as the master to which the others were synchronised. 

GHA chose to use a BightSign HD1010 as the master player and 19 HD210s as slaves, supplied by UK distributor Pixels UK Ltd; they were easy to synchronise together and performed faultlessly throughout the exhibition.  Pixels also wrote and supplied network synchronisation and control program scripts for the BrightSign players. 

At the same exhibition GHA engineered multimedia systems for three other models.  The Sorouh stand featured a horizontal twelve screen video wall which acted as the base for a perspex model of the new Lulu Island resort.  Twelve synchronised BrightSign media players ran a series of ultra-high resolution programs, each triggered by innovative invisible touch buttons built in to the model surround.  The TDIC stand included two models also incorporating video walls, a total of nine borderless monitors each running from a BrightSign media player, again supplied by Pixels UK.

The image shows the huge architectural model of Abu Dhabi illustrated and illuminated from above by 16 vertically ceiling mounted projectors, each driven by synchronised BrightSign HD1010 HD media players. A further three projectors, again driven by synchronised BrightSign players, illuminate the ultra-wide projection screen.  Several touch-screen terminals around the perimeter of the model allow visitors to access and display points of interest.


About Pixels UK Ltd

Pixels specialises in supplying HD and standard definition digital media players, decoders, encoders and visual display technology for the professional AV, digital signage, presentation, broadcast and information display markets.

Staffed by industry professionals with vast experience in digital video and computer display technologies, the company supplies and supports products from manufacturers including Adtec Digital, BrightSign, Databay, MedeaWiz, and Visual Circuits / Focus Enhancements.

Editors’ contact:
Sarah James
Gasoline Media Ltd
Tel: 01372 471472

Roddy Gye, Managing Director of GHA, said: “Projected animations onto architectural models are a relatively recent development, and GHA have been at the forefront.  It is far-from-straightforward technology, as we have discovered whilst developing a number of different projects on varying scales.  We are now the UK’s most experienced provider of this type of technology.”