Your browser is out-of-date!

Update your browser to view this website correctly. Update my browser now


AVoIP Case Study: Engineering School over IP

Hundreds of learning spaces and more than 2,000 meeting and social spaces were enabled by a robust AV over IP system at University of Manchester Engineering Department

The University of Manchester Engineering Campus Development (MECD) in England provides expansive research, learning, and meeting spaces for more than 8,000 engineering and science students.

Recently, the university required flexible AV switching systems with robust sound and intuitive control for hundreds of flexible teaching and learning spaces. All rooms in the MECD needed to be linked together, and the AV systems would also need to integrate with the university’s resource management system, Extron’s GlobalViewer Enterprise (GVE).

Pure Audio Visual (Pure AV) worked closely with the university IT/AV team to design the AV systems. Then, they spearheaded the integration of the full selection of products from Extron, including professional-grade AV matrix switchers, DSP audio and control systems, and a NAV Pro AV-over-IP system. The project added approximately 2,200 learning, meeting, and social spaces over a combined floor area of 861,113 square feet (80,000 square meters).

When deciding on the best space for a particular lesson, instructors can look up rooms by size and AV capabilities on the Room Catalog website. It includes photographs of each room and any space configuration options, as well as details about the provided and auxiliary AV equipment and connectivity capabilities by room.

Meet and Teach
Large meet and teach rooms include a Panasonic 10,000-lumen projector and a Sapphire screen, one or more Kaptivo Capture Boards, interactive whiteboards, and LG video walls. Panasonic displays on walls and carts augment visibility in the medium and large spaces, with the portable displays connected over HDMI. Room sources can incorporate combinations of one or more computers, a document camera, PTZ and network cameras, multiple microphones, and AV connectivity for wired and wireless devices. These and the mid-sized rooms provide an XTP system or a fixed-configuration AV switching system from Extron, with a right-sized switcher or matrix switcher, depending on room size and available resources. The in-room sound systems are based on Extron ProDSP processors such as the DMP 128 Plus audio processor with AEC, VoIP, and Dante to manage mixing of program audio and microphone feeds.

For AV system control, each room is outfitted with an Extron IP Link Pro control processor that works in conjunction with NBP 106 D Network Button Panels and TouchLink Pro touchpanels to provide intuitive control for all system functions.

To link each MECD room to the rest of the spaces on campus, Pure AV integrated an Extron NAV Pro AV-over-IP system. The system includes 186 endpoints, enabling content to be shared among any number of destinations. This is true even when one or more of the divisible spaces are reconfigured. Trevor Byrne, head of Media Services at the University of Manchester said, “We can send a source from any room to any other room in the complex; the NAV system turns the entire MECD complex into one enormous, flexible learning space.”

The NAVigator System Manager enabled quick, intuitive configuration and control of the NAV encoders and scaling decoders over the MECD data network. It integrated with GVE, tying together the campus spaces. GVE and the NAV Pro AVoIP system combined to provide a secure platform that enables device connectivity, status, and control from the intuitive web pages within this resource management software. Also, alerts were set up within GVE to notify the support team of device connection status changes.

The Extron AV switching, distribution, and control systems—linked by the NAV Pro AVoIP system—offered the flexibility, performance, and scalability that the university required for reliable delivery to and from each connected room on campus. Designed in partnership between Pure AV and the university’s technical and academic teams, MECD continues to meet and even exceed student, staff, and administrative expectations.

“MECD affords an exciting new environment for the delivery of interdisciplinary research, teaching, and impact across engineering,” said Professor Martin Schröder, vice president and dean of the Faculty of Science and Engineering at the University of Manchester. “We have created an inspiring, highly flexible first-class teaching and research environment that transforms the way in which the University educates engineers and material scientists for the future.”

Featured Articles