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Dataton’s Watchout central to ISE tour museum exhibit

The National Maritime Museum in Amsterdam was the site of a successful Technical Tour at ISE recently. Highly interactive, it relies heavily on Dataton's Watchout multiscreen software.

Het Scheepvaartmuseum, the National Maritime Museum in Amsterdam. was the site of a highly successful Technical Tour during the recent ISE 2012 show,

Newly reopened following refurbishment, Het Scheepvaartmuseum now consists of a series of themed and interactive exhibits, all of them featuring AV, lighting and network design by local integration firm Rapenburg Plaza. “Het Scheepvaartmuseum is a stunning example of how the integration of audio, video and control AV technology is used in an engaging and immersive way,” said visiting integrator Vaikalp Gharawala, manager – audio visuals at Graphic International Centre LLC, Dubai. “The tour, presented by Rapenburg Plaza, described the integration of technology across the museum as well as in various exhibits areas such as the Voyage at Sea and an interactive e-Xpo where visitors were able to create their very own projection show,”

Most impressive among these exhibits is the ‘Voyage at Sea’, which features Dataton’s Watchout multi-screen software. The exhibit is a five-room, 20-minute immersive walk-through cinematic experience in which museum visitors are taken on a journey through five centuries of Dutch maritime history.

The centrepiece of ‘Voyage at Sea’ is a 360-degree, oval-shaped projection which uses ten edge-blended projectors with wide-angle lenses, along with ‘snap-on’ cartridges custom-designed by Rapenburg Plaza for additional image filtering.

“Because of the way they had to be mounted and distributed in the room, it was impossible to create an equal physical overlap between each of the ten projectors,” said Jorinde Wiegel of Rapenburg Plaza. “So the edge-blending required a great deal of tweaking, including some adaptation of the actual content itself.”

That content was provided by Amsterdam-based Tungsten to an original design concept by Tinker Imagineers of Utrecht. The movie is played back through QuickTime ProRes software and is run through five dual-motherboard PCs, each running two licenses of Watchout. The Watchout machines, which are located in the museum’s central server room alongside the content servers, lighting controllers and network switches, also provide eight tracks of audio; these are routed through a Richmond SoundMan server to create the soundtrack for the room’s 12.2-channel surround-sound system.

“The whole show is controlled by a Medialon show controller, with Watchout controlled as a cluster within the Medialon system,” explains Wiegel. “We made extensive use of the edge-blending and geometric-correction tools within Watchout, and the system performed faultlessly, proving both technically extremely accurate and also very easy to use.”

“The ‘Voyage at Sea’ is a great example of how our Watchout technology can be used not only to create a wonderful immersive visitor experience, but also to tame a less-than-ideal projection and display setup when such an arrangement is necessitated by the nature of the original space,” said Fredrik Svahnberg, marketing and communications manager, Dataton.

You can read more about the other AV technology at Het Scheepvaartsmuseum on the IE website.