Gefen Connectivity Enhances Surgical Lab at Macquarie University

Published: June 22, 2017

The best technology in the world is no good if no one knows how to use it. That’s a lesson officials at Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia, learned shortly after installing top-of-the-line tech tools in its surgical skill lab.

Macquarie’s Surgical Skills Lab is used by the medical community to explore human anatomy. Since collaboration is integral in the lab, university faculty set out to make its current research sharing system —complete with camera-equipped medical stations, displays, speakers, and a central LCD display and projector —much easier to use.

Iain Brew, clinical AV and IT coordinator at Macquarie’s faculty of medicine and health sciences, decided to enhance and expand the lab’s sharing capabilities by building an entirely new Gefen connectivity infrastructure.

As the main AV specialist at Macquarie’s faculty of medicine and health sciences, Brew “knew he was the right person to lead this project,” according to the Integration Awards application. The lab serves an important function to the Macquarie community as well as the Australian medical community as a whole, and Brew knew “it was crucial that the research sharing system operate at the highest level possible.”

The lab’s previous system was quite limited in its ability to route and control video signals. The teaching station could only send a video signal to the other student displays in the lab and they had to be manually adjusted for them to accept this signal. Macquarie officials wanted to keep their existing medical equipment while changing how those signals were transmitted and accepted.

Brew knew of Gefen, and upon further research,discovered that the AV signal distribution specialist’s solutions would allow them to adhere to their tight budget and meet their strict installation deadline. Additionally, it would allow them the flexibility to grow their system organically if necessary, as well as reuse most of the lab’s existing equipment.


Content Sharing at Macquarie Made Simple

Brew designed a new Gefen Connectivity Video-over-IP-based system that allows the entire lab to function with one cohesive matrix, thus enabling any video source to be routed to any video destination in full HD quality. Additionally, the new system allows any user to control video content sharing with an Apple 12.9-inch iPad Pro. Brew installed one Gefen EXT-CU-LAN matrix controller to serve as the basis of the new VoIP infrastructure to guarantee seamless video sharing among the lab’s 10 Stryker VisionElect 26-inch medical displays.

Brew also stalled 16 Gefen HDMI senders, 15 Gefen HDMI receivers, two Gefen KVM senders, one Gefen KVM receiver, three Gefen scalers, two Gefen HDMI scalers, 10 Gefen SDI-HDMI converters and one Gefen audio converter.

The system is also equipped with video conferencing and recording technology, such as a Panasonic AW-HE40 PTZ roof-mounted camera and an AJA RovoCam 4K block camera used for high-resolution display and recording above the surgical field. Additionally, a Matrox Monarch HD recorder allows students to record video of their findings so that content can be easily uploaded to their learning management system (LMS) or passed on to clients for review and assessment.

From Challenge to Impact

Brew and the surgical skills team worked on a strict budget within a six-week time frame. “With great customer service and easy installation software, he accomplished the faculty’s goals without issue,” according to the entry.

Macquarie University, Gefen, Gefen Connectivity

Macquarie University’s surgical skills lab received an easier-to-handle system from Gefen Connectivity.

Gefen’s Syner-G and auto-discovery tools made it easy for Brew and his team to quickly set up the video aspect of the installation. They also benefited from great technical support from the Gefen Connectivity team, as well as from Jackie Roosat JAMWare for iRidium Mobile.

The installation process also adhered to Macquarie University’s commitment to sustainability. Instead of buying all new components for the AV system, Brew reused most of the existing speakers, projectors, cabling and more. Additionally, they used the new Gefen system to keep potential future add-ons a possibility. They bought only what they needed to buy, as it is easy for them to upgrade with their Gefen Connectivity system.

Brew and his team can grow it organically by adding inexpensive network switches and Tx/Rx units as required rather than having to replace entire and expensive matrix frames with dedicated cabling should the lab exceed capacity.

“I am very impressed with the Gefen range of products and will definitely recommend anyone exploring an AV upgrade or new install to check out Gefen,” said Brew.


Gefen Connectivity Equipment Highlights

Apple iPad & Global Caché Control

iPort Surface Mount

Cisco Network

Behringer Audio Mixing Console

Sennheiser Mics

Gefen Matrix Controller, Video Routing and Conversion

Stryker Medical Displays

Matrox Capture and Recording

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