[AG-TECH] New equipment recommendations

Jason Bell j.bell at cqu.edu.au
Fri Apr 2 05:15:42 CDT 2010

G'day Cindy

For your interest, I have been working on "turn key" Access Grid solutions.  You might want to check out http://www.arcs.org.au/products-services/collaboration-services/video/turnkey-solutions, especially http://www.arcs.org.au/products-services/collaboration-services/video/turnkey/room-based-system, as it lists some hardware that we use.

The following answers some of your questions:

1. I am still a big fan on using multiple machines, not because of required resources, but because the capture machine is separate, therefore the display machine only needs on "vic" to view all streams and thereby makes it more user friendly.  Easier for new users to find all video streams on the one applications, rather than having 4 vic's.

2. I'm using 512MB PCIe x16 nVidia Quadro FX580 video cards.

3. Cable length is an issue and I highly recommend buying high quality cables.  (Cheaper cables have issues over long lengths).  I use and tested Premium Gold DVI-D to HDMI Cable, 15m abd can be seen at https://www.lindy.com.au/online/arrshop.exe?af=570&as=37087&az=0&ai=1947726 with great success.

4. In regards to speakers, I find that most good speakers do the trick.

5. I don't have much experience with wireless mic's, cannot comment much sorry.

6. Cannot comment much sorry.

7. I highly suggest the Converge Pro 880.  Not only is it easier to confirm that the XAP's, but has a network interface which allows easier remote configuration I find very nice.

8. HD displays are fine, I recently built a new AG using Large LCD's, works very well.  The only issue is using Full HD quality, is that the displaying of Text might be too small and hard to read.

Anyway, hope the feedback is useful.


-----Original Message-----
From: ag-tech-bounces at lists.mcs.anl.gov [mailto:ag-tech-bounces at lists.mcs.anl.gov] On Behalf Of Cindy Sievers
Sent: Friday, 2 April 2010 7:04 AM
To: ag-tech at mcs.anl.gov
Subject: [AG-TECH] New equipment recommendations

Hi all,

We are in the process of upgrading our equipment and would like some 
input.  We currently have a room based AG node with 4 cameras, 4 
projectors, wired desktop mics, XAP800, all on one Dell dual 
processor running windows XP.  We are going to upgrade to a beefier 
machine, 3 analog cameras, one high def camera, 3 HDTV digital video 
displays, 1 flat panel digital display, possibly wireless mics, 
possibly same audio mixer.

So my questions are:
1. Is a single machine the best option or should I consider a 
separate machine for display?
2. Since the displays have only HDMI input, what kind of cards are folks using?
3. Is there a cable length limit for HDMI cables I need to take into 
4. We would also like to upgrade our speakers - any suggestions?
5. Wireless mics - what is working for folks? How about ceiling 
mics?  Has anyone had good luck with any particular brands?
6. I have a sony EVI-HD1 HD camera and Blackmagic Decklink HD Extreme 
card, and I'm currently using a Winov Videum for the analog 
cameras......can those two exist in the same machine?
7.  Should I upgrade the audio mixer?
8. What kind of issues do you see with HD displays and AG compatibility?

Any other suggestions are welcome!


Cindy Sievers           Los Alamos National Laboratory
sievers at lanl.gov        Group CCS-1 MS B287
tel:505.665.6602        Advanced Computing
fax:505.665.4939        Los Alamos, NM 87544

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