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Custom Lift Rescues Video Conferencing Space

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Custom Lift Rescues Video Conferencing Space
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When BANCO DO BRASIL decided to undertake a major renovation of its offices in Santiago, Chile, nothing was left out. Especially not technology.

“The client is fully technology oriented and wanted a meeting room with many connection capabilities, including HD video, videoconference and local presentations features,” according to Juan Carlos Herrera. Herrera is the owner and project manager for Control Central, an AV contractor and automation company located in Santiago. “The original room had been set up for videoconferencing, but with a single TV monitor installed on the wall. There were cables everywhere, poor light, and no automation.”

Control Central proposed some big changes to the space, which is the main meeting room for the Banco do Brasil’s Santiago operation, and the main videoconferencing hub with the bank’s main office in Brazil and regional offices throughout South America.

“The room has two big windows at both sides. In one side there is the projection screen that descends when it is needed,” according to Herrera. “On the other side, the client told us that they wanted two big monitors hanging from the ceiling with the codec/camera below one of them. That was the easiest solution, but the result would be horrible. The window and the natural light would be obscured by those big TVs, forever!”

Control Central’s proposal called for a significant technology upgrade, including HD projection and a big projection screen, as well as a new videoconferencing system. It also offered a different vision for the two TV monitors. Herrera proposed hiding the monitors when not in use, and lifting them out of a cabinet for videoconferencing.

“The main thing is that when you enter the room, nothing comes to the eye,” Herrera explains. “It would seem a norma meeting room with no technology at all because all the devices are hidden: projection screen, projector, videoconferencing monitors, camera and codec.”

To come up with a way to bring his vision to life, Herrera turned to Draper, Inc. Although mostly know for its projection screens and window shades, Draper also designs and provides custom motorized solutions for lifting and moving AV equipment such as flat panels.

“What I remember most about this job is the fact that, as it was very custom, it involved a number of redraws to get it just right,” according to Nate LaMar, Draper’s Regional Sales Manager for Latin America, as well as the Middle East, Africa, and Central and South Asia. “Banco do Brasil was a very discerning customer but in the end our custom capabilities delivered a solution that everyone was very happy with.”

“When we proposed a lift, the client thought that it could be a terrible solution with a mechanism moving and making noise,” according to Herrera, “so our goal was to find a very reliable mechanism that would be silent and able to do the job for many years.”

Herrera worked with the architect on the project to have a piece of custom furniture designed to hide the lift and allow it to fit in with the room design. He says the end result leaves the window view clean when the monitors are not in use, just as he had hoped.

Project a Big Success

“That is a big success. The room has two windows with natural light entering the room during the day. They lower the motorized blinds when using the videoconferencing equipment,” he says. “It is working perfectly and is very quiet. The noise was a big concern before the lift arrived but the client is very happy with the result, and so are we.”