To watch the game on TV or get tickets and go to the stadium: that is the question for dedicated football fans.
TV coverage is so good – camera angles, not necessarily the announcing – that many fans prefer the comfort of their home to the first-hand experience.
Two Dallas Cowboy fan gets the best of both worlds with their uber-high-tech private suite in Cowboys Stadium.
In fact, with nine TVs and Crestron automation that allows them to zoom onto the field for custom-close-ups and control a waterfall and fireplace, this renovated suite is actually better than the best of both worlds, according to Steve Elliston of Dallas-based Elliston Systems & Design.
The owners of the Hall of Fame level suite – actually a 20-year license to occupy the suite – decided to make it their own. They hired a general contractor to gut and renovate the already impressive space.
The general contractor put Elliston in touch with the suite owners, who also own Traxxas, a remote control car company. While talking to the owners about electronics possibilities, Elliston noted that they are very “techy” and have an open mind.
That combination resulted in a very ambitious installation.
Camera Feature: Installed in a smoked glass ball, “sort of like a casino camera,” near the partition between the inside of the suite and its outdoor seating is a 30x zoom controllable camera, explains Elliston.
The owners can pan, tilt and zoom the camera using his Crestron control system. “It’s like binoculars. They can zoom in on the field and view it on any of the nine TVs,” he says.
That, of course, allows the owners to go beyond the network TV coverage and create their own close-ups – handy for checking out ball placement or zooming in on fans.
Security: The 30x zoom camera isn’t just for watching the field. The owners can check up on their suite online. If, for instance, they can’t attend a game and allow others to use the suite, they can make sure the suite is being treated right.
9 TVs: Most suites in the new Cowboys Stadium feature three flat-panel TVs. Not bad, but Elliston’s clients opted to multiply that by three.
The suite features five Samsung LED TVs and four Samsung LCD TVs. There is one in each of the two bathrooms, plus two are largely dedicated to two wireless computer stations – a fantasy football player’s dream.
Full video switching via Crestron Digital Media allows online content to be viewed on any of the TVs, Elliston says. He adds that the following content sources up to 1080p can be viewed on any TV at any time:
- Network content
- Three stadium feeds
- DVD via the computers
- USB device with owners’ personal photos and content
Audio: The owners chose Sonance Visual Performance Series speakers. “They like the thin trim,” Elliston explains.