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Case Study: Shanghai New York University, China

Shanghai New York University (NYU) is China’s first Sino-U.S. research university. Founded in 2012 by NYU and East China Normal University with the support of the city of Shanghai and the district of Pudong, the University offers 19 majors and teaches entirely in English. One of three universities in the NYU Global Network, NYU Shanghai chose Audinate’s Dante audio network platform managed by Dante Domain Manager software to equip 57 lecture hall-style classrooms. Each of the classrooms had existing loudspeakers to reinforce the sound for in-person attendees, but it lacked the proper audio equipment to capture sound and broadcast to remote learners. The University tasked a project team consisting of members of the IT staff and instructed them to create an audio system capable of delivering high quality performance.

The project team had several key criteria when choosing its new audio network system. First, it needed to ensure the upgrade fit within a required budget. Second, they wanted to select products from reputable vendors and brands who would provide the support it needed. Finally, reliability was critical as the system needed to last 5-7 years.

Sunny Qi, senior IT helpdesk manager, was one member of the University’s project team tasked with evaluating Dante. Qi is responsible for communications services in the IT department, which includes classroom audio and technical IT support. When the team received proposals from different manufacturers, they were apprehensive about making a change given their comfort-level and experience with the existing, traditional point-to-point system. “Our team was not as familiar with Dante as we had experience mostly with analog connections,” said Qi. “When we determined our solutions required for hybrid teaching, it became clear Dante was the best choice for our campus.”

The University chose Dante-enabled equipment to improve the sound quality within the lecture rooms. Qi and her project team selected Dante-enabled Digital Signal Processors (DSP) from Extron for audio processing. The Extron DSPs also provide the ability to add high-quality effects including voice recognition, noise cancellation and surround sound capabilities. The team also selected Dante-enabled Shure ULXD4D Dual Channel Digital Wireless Receivers with lapel microphones, and later added Dante-enabled ceiling microphone arrays from Shure and Sennheiser to provide better audio coverage and consistent sound during lectures.

With numerous Dante products on the network, the University IT teams also use Dante Domain Manager. DDM allows the team to divide the system into groups to manage broadcast traffic more efficiently on the computer network and improve maintenance efficiency. Through a centralized view, the team receives alerts when issues arise in the system. Then, they can access the system from anywhere, determine the problem and solve it remotely.

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