THERE’S NOTHING OLD SCHOOL ABOUT THE AV SYSTEM AT THIS SENIOR LIVING FACILITY.
Apostolic Christian Restmor is a 128-bed skilled nursing and Sheltered Care services facility in Morton, IL. The Parkside of Morton, a 48-unit Christian retirement community is also located on the ACR campus and shares some facilities including the Morton Room, which is used for Church Services and group activities.
Thompson Electronics had been providing low voltage services to ACR for years. The integrator was responsible for everything from AV systems, re alarms, nurse call, paging and intercom systems to CCTV communications and electronic security.
It was no surprise then, for ACR to reached out to Carl Howell, Thompson Electronics’ lead AV design engineer, when the facility developed an interest in updating the Morton Room’s AV system. “Apostolic Christian Restmor wanted to provide church services to community members who were shut-in,” Carl explains. “It became quickly apparent that the easiest, least disruptive and most cost-effective way to distribute the service to resident rooms would be to modulate a CATV channel.”
Carl had known about ZeeVee for some time but had not yet found such a perfect opportunity for digital modulation. “We knew analog very well and had not yet transitioned to video distribution. Now that we know how easy it is, we’ve discovered another valuable service to offer our customers” Carl said.
The Morton room received a full-scale digital upgrade, compliments of Thompson Electronics. Carl’s team deployed a state-of-the-art AV system that includes a new HD projector, updated displays, Crestron system with iPad control, HD camera, wireless microphones, and recording system. The system is even pre-configured to be hands-off: recording begins automatically every Sunday at 8am, with camera movements pre-programmed to capture every part of the service.
Carl’s next step was modulation — turning the feed from the Church service into a digital TV channel and combining it with the existing analog CATV system. Apostolic Christian Restmor recognized that this was a good time to start upgrading their local TV channels to HD, so Thompson Electronics began replacing old analog modulators with HDbridge 2000 Series modulators. DIRECTV HD receivers now feed six channels. The remaining analog channels will be replaced in several phases over the next couple of years.
The trickiest part of this project, Carl explains, was balancing the analog and digital channels on one cable. “We needed to isolate analog and digital frequencies, and when we had a couple of questions ZeeVee was right there to support us.” Apostolic Christian Restmor was able to have their facility maintenance staff take care of re-scanning residents’ HDTVs (to pick up the new digital channels) demonstrating how simple it is to set up and use a digitally modulated HDTV system.
When asked why he chose digital modulation instead of alternatives, Carl told us “There is a lot of flexibility within the ZeeVee modulators. Picture quality is great. Channel cost is competitive. Product support was very good throughout the process. This was our first time using ZeeVee, and our technicians and customer were happy all the way around. You’ think there would be a lot of work to get from a horrible analog picture to a nice, clear HD picture, but the upgrade is really simple — There isn’t a lot of labor or interruption.”
Thanks to Thompson Electronics and ZeeVee, Church Services and HD quality television are now available to everyone at Apostolic Christian Restmor.