AT A GLANCE
SAN JOAQUIN COUNTY OFFICE OF EDUCATION—EXCEL ACADEMY
WHERE: Stockton, CA
WHEN: March 2013
WHAT: FSR FLEX-LT Control System
WHO: Bill Minch, Quality sound
• The San Joaquin County Office Of Education (SJCOE)—Excel Academy wanted to be able to monitor and control the equipment in its two gyms so that each gym could work independently of one other or, should the need arise, work together.
• An installed and programmed FSR FLEX-LT Control System with a FLEX-LT150 control panel in each gym, with each system sending IP commands to a rack mounted FSR FLEX-LT300, rather than to a local device.
• A user-friendly system designed to control a range of equipment, such as projectors, audio gear, and LCD monitors, within two rooms separately and/or together.
• Classrooms are outfitted with FSR FLEX-LT systems, controlling a short throw projector, audio (on/off/ volume) and input switches.
Hallways are outfitted with three FLEX touch screens and corresponding TVs in the hallways throughout the building. Under each FLEX 3.5” LCD screen, there are cables for teachers to hook up their laptops or tablets for quick small group sessions. The FLEX switches input, turns TV on and offers TV volume control.
The gym configuration includes control for audio (on/off/volume).
SJCOE is also using the FLEX control manager I-Pad ™ app to remotely monitor and control equipment. They currently have more than 30 FLEX systems installed in multiple facilities (not just the Excel Academy) which it is able to monitor from the FLEX manager.
SJCOE provides educational leadership, resources, and services to support schools throughout San Joaquin County within Stockton, CA. In 2012, SJCOE opened up its Excel Academy specifically designed for sports education, to encourage a spirit of achievement and promote the academic, athletic, social, and leadership development of students. As a facility that features two gymnasiums and nine classrooms, with a host of professional AV gear that includes projectors, audio equipment and LCD screens, SJCOE wanted a control system for each of its two gyms that would allow users to operate the AV gear within each gym independently of one other, yet also offer the option of being able to operate the two gyms together, should the need arise. For example, if there is an event taking place in gym number one, gym number two becomes the overflow room for excess guests to hear the event in real time.
With a clear mandate in mind, SJCOE went to Quality Sound, an integrator for all low voltage systems in healthcare, education and government, with whom they have a long-established and ongoing relationship. The company’s expertise lies in fire alarms, security, data, cabling networks, AV, PA, theater sound, nurse call and life safety applications, and Bill Minch, the company’s senior project manager who runs and over sees all government and education jobs, led the project.
To address the needs of SJCOE, Quality Sound installed and programmed one FLEX-LT150 in each of the two gyms. Each of the systems send IP commands to the rack mounted FLEX-LT300, rather than to a local device. The gyms work off the same system but can independently send commands. There is also the capability of utilizing up to eight microphones, shared between the gyms in any configuration. According to Mr. Minch, “We chose the FLEX for San Joaquin County because of its flexibility. San Joaquin County was looking for a solution it could standardize on that would be cost effective for small classrooms, yet also be versatile enough to handle larger systems such as the dual gym at its Excel Academy. FSR’s FLEX series control system was the perfect fit. Even though the FLEX controllers are customized for each unique installation, the interface is still familiar to the staff, so as they move around to different facilities they have a much easier time adjusting.”
Mr. Minch says that the FLEX system keeps training to a minimum, and the flexible yet simple programming keeps costs down. In fact, SJCOE has standardized on the FLEX control systems throughout all of its buildings campus wide.
• The capabilities of the two gyms will be expanded with the installation of projectors. The FLEX will then be re-programmed to include control for the projector, motorized screen and possibly a projector lift. There are other SJCOE facilities, both new construction and renovations, that are currently being designed with installation scheduled to begin within a year. These installations will all include FLEX control systems and FSR wall boxes, both of which have been adopted as the standard for SJCOE.
ABOUT THE FLEX-LT CONTROL SYSTEM
The FLEX-LT is a self-contained control system that has a vast number of features and a price point that everyone can afford. The FLEX-LT mounts in a wall or sits on a desk and presents an easy-to-use and understand color touch screen. Through the touch screen the user can choose what source is being displayed, change the volume, control the various sources, turn lights on and off, raise or lower the shades or screen and much more.
Using the built-in scheduler, the FLEX-LT can automatically shut off displays that have been accidentally left on and also alert the support staff if there is an issue such as the lamp life getting too high in order to reduce the down time of the room.
The FLEX-Able configuration utility features an easy-to-use method to get the most out of the system. The contractor is presented with an easy to follow drag ‘n drop programming methodology; no need to learn another programming language. FLEX-Able eases device control by offering IR libraries or if a library is not available, the FLEX-IR learner is a snap to use.
Also, the FLEX-LT control system can be controlled remotely via mobile devices such as an iPad, through a downloadable app.
SAN JOAQUIN COUNTY OFFICE OF EDUCATION- EXCEL ACADEMY
The San Joaquin County Office of Education (SJCOE) (www.sjcoe.org) provides educational leadership, resources, and services to support schools throughout the San Joaquin County within Stockton, CA. In 2012, SJCOE opened up its Excel Academy (www.excel.sjcoe.net) specifically designed for sports education, to encourage a spirit of achievement and promote the academic, athletic, social, and leadership development of students.
FSR, established in 1981, manufactures a wide variety of signal management and infrastructure solutions for the audio / video, datacom, education, hospitality, government, and religious markets, including floor, wall, table, and ceiling connectivity boxes, as well as a full line of interfaces, distribution amplifiers, matrix switchers, seamless switchers and HDBaseT & CAT-X signal delivery solutions.
The company is an Energy Star Partner and complies with the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 to demonstrate its deep commitment to preserving the planet. FSR offers live 24/7 technical and sales support throughout the country from expertly trained technicians and sales representatives. For more information: www.fsrinc.com.
ABOUT QUALITY SOUND
Quality Sound (www.qualitysound.net) is an integrator for all low-voltage systems in healthcare, education and government. The company’s expertise lies in fire alarms, security, data, cabling networks, AV, PA, theater sound, nurse call and life safety applications. Quality Sound is also experienced in sensitive build-outs such as courtrooms and courthouses. The company has been in business since 1948, and under current ownership since 1980.