Gail Chiasson, North American Editor
Scarlet Knights basketball fans of Rutgers University are enjoying a whole new game-day experience this season inside the Rutgers Athletic Center (The RAC) in Piscataway, N.J., thanks to the updated center-hung video display and custom audio systems installed by Brookings, South Dakota-based Daktronics.
“Our new Daktronics video boards and sound system have greatly enhanced the game-day experience for our fans and corporate sponsors, as well as the teams,” says Geoff Brown, senior associate athletic director/chief marketing officer. “The RAC has a tremendous collegial quality. It has a great new energy. Thanks to Daktronics, we were able to supplement those attributes with the latest technologies. The result is a game-day experience that appeals to a variety of consumers.”
Inside The RAC, the center-hung features a four-sided video display with two ring displays, one on top and one on bottom. The four main video displays each measure approximately 7’ high x 12’ wide and feature 6mm line spacing. They are capable of showing one large image to highlight live video and instant replays. They can also be divided into separate windows to show a variety of vivid graphics, colorful animations, up-to-the-minute statistics, scoring information and sponsor advertisements.
Installed above the court, these displays incorporate excellent image clarity and contrast with wide angle visibility providing optimal viewing for all fans.
The top ring display measures approximately 2’ high x 62’ in circumference, and the lower ring display measures approximately 2’ high by 43 feet in circumference. Both feature 15mm line spacing.
The RAC center-hung is raised and lowered using two remote Daktronics hoists. The 6,000 pound capacity dual hoist system can lift a total of 12,000 pounds and features 6’ per minute lifting speed. This system, which incorporates the latest in hoisting technology and safety, will be used to support the display at varying elevations depending on the arena’s needs.
Daktronics also installed two auxiliary displays located in two of the four corners of The RAC. These displays each measure approximately 29’ high x 6’ wide, again with 15mm line spacing. The ring and auxiliary displays provide the opportunity to highlight sponsor advertisements and show real-time statistics.
The Scarlet Knights now take to the floor under a new sound system comprised of nearly 60 new speakers. Design engineers from the audio division used the Electro-Voice EVA 2082 series of speakers to build line arrays precisely matched to the needs of the arena. Subwoofers were installed to add ‘feel’ to the sound experience. The custom speaker system is powered by 12 amplifiers from Electro-Voice ‘Tour Grade’ series.
“The new audio and video system at The RAC will have a huge impact on the game-day experience for Rutgers fans, sponsors and student athletes,” says Scott Willson, Daktronics sales representative. “We worked closely with Rutgers to fully understand the unique atmosphere at The RAC and the needs of the athletic department in producing a high-end design that met all of their requirements. Our audio group, as well as our front end video production team and video design team came together to provide a single source, fully integrated system that provides Rutgers with a truly state-of-the-art system and equally important, ensures the same level of customer support that they have been receiving from Daktronics for the last 20 years.”
The Rutgers Athletic Center (The RAC) is home to the Scarlet Knights men’s and women’s basketball programs. The facility, which opened in 1977 and can seat 8,000 fans, is known for being one of the most challenging college basketball arenas for visiting opponents to play in.