St Fagans National Museum of History
Cutting Edge AV for Learning Spaces
St Fagans National Museum of History
Requirement: Cutting Edge AV Facilities
The museum at St Fagans is one of Europe’s leading open-air museums and is Wales’s most popular heritage attraction.
Since 1948 over forty original buildings from different historical periods have been re-erected in the 100-acre parkland, among them houses, a farm, a school, a chapel and a splendid Workmen’s Institute.
The museum is the largest learning provider outside of the classroom in Wales and they intend to increase learning visits at St Fagans by 40 per cent. It will serve the needs of a broader and more diverse public – schools, families, young people, students, adults, community groups and specialists conducting research from Wales and beyond.
Thanks to a £30 million redevelopment project to transform St Fagans, funded by the Heritage Lottery, the Welsh Government and many others the Main Building has been transformed and there is a completely new building, the Gweithdy where visitors of all ages will be encouraged to experience traditional skills first-hand.
In 2017 the new Main Building opened with the Weston Centre for Learning. This includes three new activity spaces and Lecture Theatre. The Gweithdy has another activity room and all of these rooms were equipped by Drake AV.
In 2018 the existing audio-visual facilities in the Oakdale Institute were also completely updated to the same standards as the lecture theatre by Drake AV.
The Lecture Theatre
The Lecture Theatre was specified with full high definition projection and a surround sound audio system. There are four Atlona connection points around the theatre for either VGA or HDMI inputs as well as microphone inputs.
There’s also a Denon BluRay player in the equipment rack. All the video signals are controlled through an Atlona matrix switcher. The microphones along with a pair of wireless mics are all connected through a patchbay to a Presonus StudioLive mixer.
The projector is a 6000 ANSI Canon with a wide angle lens to fit the required mounting location.
Surround sound audio uses an Extron processor with JBL speakers and Apart amplifiers. The lecture theatre has an installed induction loop as well as a Sennheiser infra red simultaneous translation system.
The whole AV system is controlled by an AMX Netlinx controller and a small wall-mounted touchpanel. The touchpanel control is also available on an iPad. As well as control of the projector, screen and BluRay the iPad also gives full control of the Presonus mixer.
Two of the three activity rooms are fitted with interactive whiteboards and simple AMX wall mounted button control panels. The third room has a Canon short throw projector mounted with a custom built Unicol bracket onto the (listed) concrete beams of the original main building. In this room the ceiling mounted speakers were inaccessible without visible cabling so the audio from this system is transmitted using a Denon wireless link.
NEC LCD displays are used for signage. There are two in the Weston reception area and another in the Wet Room in the Gweithdy. This screen in the Gweithdy is also linked to an input plate and button control panel.
As part of this new build contract Drake AV also installed a background audio system in the restaurant, shop and café areas using Cloud amplification and Monitor Audio ceiling speakers.
What we proposed:
The Oakdale Institute
In the Oakdale Institute there was an existing projection system which we removed and replaced with a full high definition system, we also installed a Presonus audio mixer and Atlona input plates and matrix switch to match the system in the lecture theatre. Again we used an AMX touch panel with a wireless iPad to control both the AV components and the Presonus mixer.
In the Oakdale Institute we had to take particular care to respect the structure of the building and agreed the positions of every component and the cable routes with museum staff.
What They Said...
“Drake Audio installed three state-of-the-art interactive touchscreens into our activities rooms, as well as equipment for our lecture theatre. Their staff were very supportive and the system is perfect for our requirements."
Here are a few more pics from the AV project
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