USAV Partners Help Modernize PSA Meeting Space

A good office renovation starts with input from individuals within every department to understand their needs and wants. In early 2019 Katie Blough, project manager for PSA Network, did just that for the 50- person PSA Network (PSA) office, headquartered in Westminster, CO. Through interviews, surveys, site visits and careful planning, the office was designed to optimize space and enable growth while increasing each team’s collaboration efforts to increase performance. The office renovation included upgraded equipment installations to the technology within the conference room and new huddle space. Enlisting the expertise of Patrick Whipkey, director of USAV and a former ProAV integration project manager, he knew exactly what to do.  They say “a plumber’s house is the one with the leaky pipes” and that was the case for the PSA conference room. An old 3500 lumen 4:3 Panasonic projector with a VGA and wireless input, 80-inch drop-down projector screen and Polycom conference phone were the only technology in the conference room. It was frustrating for employees and guests to give presentations especially when the adapters for HDMI outputs failed to connect. Patrick enlisted the help of the USAV Preferred Manufacturing Partners (PMPs) and USAV integrator, LINX Multimedia to scope a nice unified communications (UC) presentation system.

Leaning on the USAV PMPs, a system that met today’s UC standards and provided room for growth was designed with the assistance of LINX Multimedia. The capabilities to host a web conference meeting, locally present and make audio calls were identified as the main requirements. These were simple tasks by themselves, but when you start to combine those tasks, it can get complicated quickly. Starting with the conference room technology, an NEC 2×2 video wall was selected to hang on a Chief LVS1U video wall mount for the room display.  This provides a 96” wide by 54” tall image.  NEC’s partnership made this an ideal vendor to transition from a projection system to a video wall. Below the NEC display, a Vaddio Conference Shot 10 for web conferencing was added, connected directly to the room computer via USB. The pan-tilt and zoom functions for the Vaddio system are controlled on a Kramer KT-107. For the conference audio, two Vaddio ceiling mics were mounted above the conference table for balanced audio coverage. Also mounted in the ceiling for sound reinforcement were two Electro-Voice 8” speakers. These speakers are used for both presentation audio and far-end audio during a video call. The backbone of the system is a Kramer VS-84T presentation switcher which handles all the switching and routing of the input/output sources. The switcher was housed within a new credenza located under the NEC display. The first source is a table HDMI/VGA connection which operates through a Kramer DIP-20 transmitter ran back to the switcher via Cat-6 cables in a Wiremold OFR series cable raceway. The next source is a room PC that was placed inside a Middle Atlantic CFR equipment rack-mounted in the credenza. The wireless collaboration was addressed with technology from USAV PMP Barco. A Barco CSE-200 Clickshare was placed inside the equipment rack and two Clickshare button-devices were placed on the conference room table. The ability to display multiple images on the main NEC video wall is a feature that has been positively received by employees and guest presenters. To round out the conference room upgrade technology design, a way to control everything with a simple user interface was needed. Kramer provided an easy-to-use user interface (UI) on a 7” touch screen located in the center of the conference room table. Kramer’s control will provide great analytics on the back end of the system which will provide room and device usage information. The entire system was installed by a USAV partner, LINX Multimedia located in Denver, CO. They did a great job working with the original “napkin” CAD design through to implementation.

The goal was to have an easy-to-use system that allowed for today’s newer digital technology. “We wanted the ability to host and attend web conferencing meetings and the new system does just that,”  said Bill Bozeman, CEO of PSA Network. “The new system connects us in a way we didn’t think was possible and we could not be happier. We are excited and now fully prepared for guests to come to our office and have an elevated presentation experience using this new technology provided by our USAV partners.” Gone are the day of plugging in a VGA cable or just spinning our laptops to show what is on the screen. This wireless collaboration has really blown the minds of the PSA employees. Allowing first-hand involvement with this technology has expanded the exposure of employees to AV technology and has made them advocates for the USAV partnerships. As technology improves and UC standards change, PSA is committed to improving its design. A complete case-study for the PSA Network office renovation will be available in 2020.