Hitting a Home Run!

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Fifth Third Ballpark is the home of the West Michigan Whitecaps, a Class A minor league baseball team affiliated with the Detroit Tigers. Our relationship with the Whitecaps stadium began in the fall of 2013 when Sam Ramos from Mediatrex contacted Oncore AV to consult with upgrading their video system.

The system that was originally created for the stadium was great for meeting their needs of multi-camera shoot, play back abilities and patch locations for local TV stations. As Oncore AV began to design and build a new system for the Whitecaps, they had an unfortunate fire in the winter that reached the multi-media suite. Thankfully, with the support from the community, the Whitecaps were able to successfully rebuild and continue their 2014 season uninterrupted.

The fire allowed Oncore AV to take a deeper look on what could be beneficial to their production. The accident forced the replacement of all cabling, including audio, video and any other interconnection going in and out of the video suite. This offered an opportunity to upgrade standard coax to 3 GB HD-SDI cable to interconnect their high-end Sony production equipment, as well as running interconnect to the TV truck location on the lower level. Upgrading the cabling gave Oncore AV technicians the ability to rebuild, re-wire and troubleshoot minor issues with the video system that the production staff dealt with in prior seasons. Having a ground approach as opposed to a full rework approach helped to give them a new highly functional system.

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During a live game the production staff wanted camera shots of the players, coaches and dugouts; however, they did not have the available space for a camera fixture without being disruptive to staff and spectators. After collaboration and research, Audio Foundry installed pan, tilt, zoom, (PTZ) robotic cameras in each dugout. As an addition to the robotic cameras, technicians ran a full fiber optic link from the video suite to the center field camera location.

Since the 2015 season kicked off, both the Whitecaps Production Team and Sam Ramos from Mediatrex are satisfied with their full working video system that has created a long lasting relationship with Oncore AV. Their upgraded system now gives them access to new marketing materials such as streaming live social media feed along with the availability to have a full HD broadcast.

For more information about our services, please visit audiofoundry.com.

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Our simplified solution for large church productions

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With their large theatrical performances, Blythefield Hills Baptist Church in Rockford, Mich. began to experience difficulties with their analogue patch bay and their limited 72-input console. Oncore AV was approached by the Worship Arts Technical Director Don Hamblin with a vision of simplicity for their audio needs. Together, we focused on creating and installing a new system that no longer needed an analogue patch bay and increased their available inputs, while allowing for two board operators. We also hoped to achieve a versatility of work surfaces for the vocals, worship team and wireless microphones.

Oncore AV began the project by considering several manufacturers, but for the church we decided the Allen and Heath iLive products were ideal because it was the most cost effective, while still meeting all the ministry’s needs. We used an iLive-144 connected to two IDR-64 stage boxes that allowed 128 inputs to accommodate their 96 available input points in the sanctuary. The Allen and Heath ACE Network connected the surface and stage boxes on each side of the stage with a single Cat-5e cable. When the symphony is on-site, the stage right IDR has the option of being moved up to a separate location, which consists of all the inputs for the instrumentation.

During a large performance for Christmas or Easter, the church uses up to 48 wireless microphones. Facing this, we did not want to take away from the 128 inputs we currently set up for instrumentation. So we used the Allen and Heath IDR-48 connected to an iLive-T112 through the ACE Network and then connecting the outputs via Audinate Dante technology off port B of the IDR-48 and IDR-64 Slave. This gave them a full digital system with up to 176 inputs between the two systems. For personal monitoring they use a mixture of wedges and Aviom A-16II personal monitor systems. Having the D800-Dante from Aviom allows use of 16 outputs from either console while not using any of our 32 analogue outputs.

Between Hamblin’s vision of simplicity and versatility and our trained professional opinion, we believe this system will work smoothly for their large upcoming productions. Blythefield Hills Baptist Church will now have an easier understanding of how to incorporate numerous elements that engage well throughout the entire performance, making it less confusing by incorporating two separate surface boards.