02.04.18

Case Study: Pure Fitness, Singapore

Pure Fitness Main Image
Spinning room at Pure Fitness, Singapore with curved projection

Hurrairah bin Sohail visits the Pure Fitness gym where a carefully calibrated projection system helps provide members with an extra dose of immersion while they exercise.

Pure Fitness at Ngee Ann City is a gym located in the bustling heart of Orchard Road, Singapore. The premises the gym now occupies previously served as a nightclub. A significant remodelling project was undertaken to have the space serve the needs of its latest occupant.

AV Land was brought in as the AV integrator for the project. Alvin Chong, business manager for AV Land, says: “We were engaged directly by the owner for the specifi c room in question. The project was almost like a design and build. Our past track record and experience with extensive, non-traditional projection project made AV Land a great fit for the job.”

The brief from the client was simple. Pure Fitness required a curved, custom display and audio systems for a dedicated cycling room, popularly know as ‘spinning’ in gym parlance. The most important consideration for the AV system deployed was quality performance while also being easy to use for the trainers and instructors.

For visuals AV Land deployed four Panasonic PT-RZ660 WUXGA projectors. Chong says: “With a curved display surface, projection with blended edges was the only way to go to provide a seamless viewing experience.”

He continues: “Laser projection was a key requirement as well. They are lamp-free and require little to no maintenance. This means that interaction with the projector is kept to a minimum which means we don’t have to align and realign the projectors all the time.”

The content is stored on a Mac Pro which outputs over four projectors. The projector’s inbuilt blending feature forms a seamless single image on the 25m by 3m wall. An Extron switcher and Aten splitter is employed to split the video out which is carried over to four projectors.

Interestingly, video signals to the projectors are transmitted over DVI. Chong justifi es the selection: “We employed some of our hard earned expertise gathered over the years for the video transmission. The distance between the AV rack and the projectors is short so we were able to have a direct cable run and, from experience, DVI generally has slightly less latency when compared with the latency of HDBaseT. So we decided to not overcomplicate matters and go with DVI. We also chose Optis optical cables to safeguard against failure.”

With the projection being a core component of the project, AV Land spent time ensuring that the visuals were perfect.

Chong narrates: “Projector alignment was the most challenging aspect of this project. As it is a non-uniform, curved wall, auto camera setup and alignment wasn’t deployed. To meet the high expectations of the client, we decided to go for manual alignment and blending of the projectors even though it is a difficult and time consuming process. But we were able to achieve a perfect blending of the image. We generated custom test patterns with circles, lines and squares to check for any misalignment or incorrect video format. A final test was conducted by a close up inspection of video alignment and laser; and for checking of correct video format on this unique curved wall.”

The curved screen for projection has been painted with Goo paint. Chong says: “We chose Screen Goo Basic White because their white coatings work best in darkness. With its gain of 1.05, it brings out the colours superbly in the dark. It is non-intrusive, maintenance-free and sits well with the gym’s aesthetic.”

Content for the room at Pure Fitness is provided by Les Mills which runs on the Mac and has cyclists pedalling their way through digitally inspired cityscapes and country roads. Audio in the space is provided by eight JBL PRX series speakers. Two speakers can be found at the front, two at the back and one each at the sides of the room. Two sub-woofers are also employed for handling the lower frequencies.

Chong says: “Background music at the gym is provided by different Bose speakers. But the client wanted a different sound for this room and wanted a lot of power, but economically. We provided two sub-woofers because this, after all, is a dedicated exercise space. More bass and more impact in these cases is always good.

“The JBL speakers were specifically chosen because they are self-powered. This allowed us to do away with amplifiers and actually saved us a lot of rack space.”

A Yamaha MTX series audio DSP was deployed for multi-zone audio control. It is equipped with flexible processing functions, that were essential for audio tuning. AKG 470 series headset microphones are also provided for trainers and instructors to use during their sessions.

Ease of operation was also a requirement. AV Land has configured an intuitive control system for Pure Fitness which can be controlled through an app on an iPad.

Chong explains: “We don’t need a traditional control processor for such a small space and there is no controller to be found in the rack. We decided to go down the route of control via software. The control app has been configured on the iPad for the client to use.”

Ease of operation was also a requirement. AV Land has configured an intuitive control system for Pure Fitness which can be controlled through an app on an iPad. As technologies evolve, the iPad touch panel was chosen as the brain for the control of all various equipment such as projectors, audio DSP and Mac Pro via IP, whereas a traditional system requires a central control system which would have incurred additional cost.

Looking back, Chong says: “This project stands out because for once we had ample time to complete and deliver. In fact, we had the other contractors crunched for time for us. We needed the air-conditioning in the room to be functional before we began the alignment for the projector, because changes in temperature can expand and contract the equipment. So HVAC had to make sure that the air-conditioning for the space was up and running by the time our work started.”

Tech Spec

Audio

AKG headset microphones
Bose speakers
JBL PRX speakers
Yamaha MTX DSP

Control

Apple iPad

Video

Aten HDMI splitter
Extron switcher
Optis cables
Panasonic PT-RZ660 WUXGA projectors