Alcorn McBride equipment is running music, video and lighting on the Las Vegas High Roller. Recently opened, this is the world’s tallest observation wheel, and serves as the focal point of The LINQ, an innovative shopping, dining and entertainment district on the Las Vegas Strip. The 550ft tall wheel has 28 glass-enclosed cabins that hold up to 40 passengers each. The 30-minute ride, scheduled day and night, offers unparalleled views of the Strip and surrounding valley. The experience includes a dynamic video and music show that fades away as the wheel ascends, along with a colorful night-time light show.
“It was a challenge to work with a system spread over a 550ft tall wheel and a 30-minute ride,” said Kevin M Ruud, a consultant with Design Horizons who served as the design engineer and programmer for the High Roller, the pre-ride building and The LINQ. “It took a lot of rides for us to get all the cues and programming worked out. The programming was especially complex with 28 different timelines for the cabins running simultaneously. We knew the only gear that could handle this accurately and reliably was Alcorn McBride.”
When visitors arrive at the wheel’s pre-ride building they meet Lucas, the narrator of the High Roller experience. Two Alcorn McBride A/V Binloop HD units feed monitors throughout the facility. In the security area, visitors see five consecutive portrait-mode monitors where Lucas’s image is locked together and interacts with five different feeds of himself. In the reception and bar areas sets of monitors feature graphics and pricing for the ride. A photo area allows visitors to get their pictures taken with the wheel.
The departure concourse houses a 270º curved screen measuring 121ft x 13ft. Six video projectors display a giant edge-blended image across the screen, offering a glimpse of the adventure to come. Moving lights enhance the space and a 12.1-channel sound system delivers the audio. An additional screen is over the ride entrance that leads out to the platform. All of the imagery and audio are run from Alcorn McBride V16 Pro and LightCue Pro systems.
Each cabin on the High Roller has a dedicated V16 Pro and A/V Binloop HD, which feed eight monitors wrapped above the windows of the cabin. They display content relevant to the position of the wheel at that moment, such as what sights visitors are seeing and how high in the air the wheel is; a celebratory piece displays when they reach the zenith of the ride. Dedicated AM4 units in each cabin play background music and announcements. All 28 cabins talk back to another V16 Pro on the platform that sends information to each cabin when the wheel is rotating.
When visitors finish riding the High Roller they can stroll along the quarter-mile LINQ, which features a sound system along its entire length. A V16 Pro runs the time-of-day routines, sets levels and adjusts music types. Announcements are run through an AM4, controlled by the V16 Pro.
“I’ve had experience with Alcorn McBride products and have found them to be reliable and cost effective – just what we needed for the High Roller and the LINQ,” said Ruud. “The people at Alcorn are always great to work with, too. They’re always available and more than willing to help.”
The LINQ was developed by Caesars Entertainment. Content for the High Roller attraction was created by the Hettema Group, which was also responsible for the design of the wheel, cabins and the building entry. The installation was performed by National Technology Associates.