A Unanimous Verdict: DIS & QSC For Frankfurt Regional Court
Courtroom Upgrades AV System In Main Courtrooms With Shure DIS DCS 6000 & QSC Q-Sys
The Frankfurt Regional Law Courts, a complex containing local, regional and higher regional courts as well as facilities for public prosecutors, has upgraded its audio-visual discussion and conferencing system in its two main courtrooms to a new, entirely digital system based on a Shure DIS DCS 6000 conferencing system and the QSC Q-Sys audio processing and management platform.
The AV systems in the two main court chambers at the Frankfurt Regional Law Courts were decades old and in need of being brought up to date, particularly with respect to security. As part of the refurbishment, the authorities decided that the discussion and conferencing systems needed to be replaced, but it was important to find a solution that would fit into the existing furniture in the courtrooms, so as to cause the minimum of disruption.
The integrator who undertook the planning and installation of the replacement system on behalf of the Hessian State Authorities, Hellwig Sound Systems of Bensheim, chose a completely digital solution comprising a Shure DIS DCS 6000 discussion and conferencing system, while audio routing, processing and management throughout the courtrooms is now taken care of by a QSC Q-Sys platform.
Each seat in the courtroom was given its own DCS CU-6105 central processing unit, personal loudspeaker and control panel with on/off switch, fed by newly installed Cat 7 connections, to make each seat individually addressable. To this end, each courtroom now contains three RP-6004 network splitters to provide all the necessary network connections.
The team from Hellwig Sound Systems had to first dismantle the old discussion system and construct new custom-made panels that exactly fitted the cavities left in the furniture by the older system. Beneath these custom panels, a total of 86 MU-6040D DCS interfaces were built in, each with its own GM-6524 gooseneck cardioid microphone.
The courtroom desks used by the judge, legal assessors and court security officers were reconstructed slightly differently, with larger custom-made panels designed to incorporate the extra functions required by each of these important court personnel — including the ability to control the lighting and in-court projection screens, to call witnesses over the PA and to activate 'Court In Session/Not In Session' and 'Public/Closed Session' indicators outside. Judges also have the ability to override all other inputs and interrupt all discussion from their control panels when required.
In addition to the conference units permanently built in to the courtroom seating, 20 more DC-6120P portable conference units allow further participants to be added to the discussions in either courtroom if required.
Audio passes from the DCS 6000 system via QSC IO-22 interfaces into the Core 250i Q-Sys central processor, which manages the networked audio streams from both main courtrooms. Q-Sys controls various functions at the courts, including the sounding of court session chimes throughout the building, the red/green status LEDs on each GM-6524 microphone and the transmission of witness calls to the PA system. In the courtrooms, the sound reinforcement is now taken care of partly by the old ceiling speakers from the original system, and partly by new QSC AD-S52T installation speakers added by the team from Hellwig Sound Systems to the public viewing gallery. Further speakers in the halls of the building facilitate the calling of witnesses to the court. The loudspeakers are now all powered by three QSC ISA 300 Ti amplifiers, which allow differentiated control over up to five different loudspeaker zones.
The increased flexibility introduced by the DCS discussion system and the Q-Sys audio management platform means that small groups of seats, in different courtrooms if required, can now be patched together and into discussions of different sizes, without all of the seats needing to be active at once. Seating in the newly refurbished courtrooms can also be moved in and out of the courtrooms, depending on the size of the trials taking place; new benches can be added or removed by plugging them in or disconnecting them from the network. If participants change seats during the discussion, their new seating position can also be incorporated into the active discussion group without any difficulty, whether they are in the original courtroom or have moved to the other for any reason. Peter Willmann, from Hellwig Sound Systems, sums up the benefits thus: "The system is easy to use, and makes it very simple to change signal routing when individual seating arrangements in the courtrooms need to be reorganized. In addition, the whole system is extremely resistant to failure."
|DCS 6000||Digital conference system enables meetings of up to 3,800 users to be managed with complete control and reliability.|