Located in the heart of Hollywood, California, The Ricardo MontalbA¡n Foundation Theatre is a venue for diverse cultural events. A well-equipped 1,000-seat facility, its security system includes several 1.3-megapixel IP security cameras from Canon U.S.A., Inc., a leader in digital imaging solutions. The cameras are mounted on exterior and interior locations of the theatre, which is named after the late actor and performing-arts patron Ricardo MontalbA¡n.
“Security is a concern in any busy urban area, and when you’re moving large groups of people in and out, it’s paramount for maintaining the confidence of both patrons and staff,” noted Gil Smith, chairman of the MontalbA¡n Foundation Theatre. “We have an iconic 1926 Broadway-style theatre building, and graffiti and vandalism are continuing challenges. We want to maintain a positive environment here, and video surveillance provides documentation after the fact. If there’s an indication of some incident, you can go back and review the footage. This video information provides for better communication with both the community and the police.”
Veteran Los Angeles area security equipment specialists Post Alarm Systems handled installation and integration of the Canon megapixel IP security cameras, which include: VB-M600VE fixed vandal resistant dome cameras for the exterior of the building, VB-M600D indoor dome cameras, and VB-M700F “box-style” cameras. Plans call for a VB-M40 PTZ (pan-tilt-zoom) camera to also be mounted to the outside of the building for wide-angle street views captured with its built-in Genuine Canon 20x zoom lens. All Canon megapixel IP security cameras are ONVIF conformant to ensure network interoperability.
“My first concern in choosing security cameras was picture quality, and I knew of Canon’s reputation for digital technology in its consumer and professional products,” Smith recalled. “Canon is a world leader in optics and image-making, so my instinct was to look very seriously at their IP security cameras. I think it was a very good decision to go in that direction.”
From Dark to Bright
The VB-M600VE, VB-M600D, and VB-M700F feature Genuine Canon optical zoom lenses, a 1.3-megapixel high-sensitivity CMOS image sensor, and a sophisticated Canon DIGIC NET image processor for excellent low-light performance. A Smart Shade Control feature automatically adjusts the contrast between bright and dark areas of the image to enhance the detail display. A special Night Mode provides increased low-light sensitivity over the standard recording mode.
“The theatre presents a lot of challenges for maintaining good picture levels,” Smith informed. “Conditions range from the darkest dark on our theater stage, to the hottest hot in bright outdoor sunlight. Our entry court has deep, dark corners that turn into bright sunlit areas as the day progresses. The dynamic range that I’m seeing from these Canon IP cameras, from highlights to shadows, is amazing. The edge control from the sharpness of the Canon lens, and the way the images are processed, is much better than what I’ve seen from other security camera systems.”
Remote Adjustment Function
In addition to their exceptional 1.3 megapixel imaging, the networked Canon IP security cameras at the MontalbA¡n Theatre also feature Canon’s Remote Adjustment Function, which enables integrators and installers to remotely change the viewpoint, zoom, and focus of these fixed cameras after installation remotely from any Internet-connected PC, without removing the camera’s dome cover. Viewpoint adjustments to the image-capture area of these stationary cameras include their pan, tilt, and rotation angles. Access to the camera with a ladder or bucket truck becomes unnecessary, which eliminates the time and expense of on-site adjustments involving labor, transportation, and equipment. This feature is especially handy for large installations of multiple Canon IP security cameras.
“Using Canon megapixel IP security cameras with the Remote Adjustment Feature saved us a good several hours per camera,” noted Rich Buchanan, account executive at Post Alarm Systems, which installed the cameras at the MontalbA¡n Theatre. “I can go down in front of a web page and make some tweaks in five seconds that would have taken me at least an hour to do if I was already on-site. That’s a huge savings that adds up over and over again. The Remote Adjustment Function is definitely going to equate to happier customers, and having a happy customer is definitely going to equate to more referrals and recommendations of Canon products.”
Yet another built-in feature of all Canon megapixel IP security cameras that the MontalbA¡n Foundation Theatre is also taking full advantage of is video analytics, which assists in detecting abandoned, moving, and removed objects. User-adjustable in terms of detection area, sensitivity, and duration, these analytics can trigger alarms. In addition, camera analytics can alert for abnormal sound levels and tampering that may indicate a camera is being vandalized.
“The Canon megapixel IP security cameras at the MontalbA¡n Foundation Theatre are indispensable,” Smith concluded. “The image quality detail, color accuracy, corner-to-corner focus, and low-light performance they deliver are amazing. The system gives us the confidence that we can close the doors, walk away, and know that at any moment we can access our servers and the images that we are capturing 24/7. Canon is at the center of the digital revolution, and it has made high-quality imaging far more accessible.”