Applied Electronics Wins the Race for Woodbine Entertainment with Control Room Upgrade to HD

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Located in Rexdale, Ontario and owned and operated by the Woodbine Entertainment Group, Woodbine Racetrack is Canada’s showplace for thoroughbred racing. In 1997, Horseplayer Interactive (HPI) was introduced, which brought together the best of Internet, telephone and television distribution systems to offer customers the convenience of telephone account wagering (TAB) service allowing customers to wager on racetracks across Canada, North America and around the world. An extensive infrastructure of Television and internet services have been built within the Woodbine facility to produce and distribute content to in-house television sets, large viewing screens in the in-field and spectator areas, production companies, television stations, and a network of racing tracks throughout the world.

Having worked extensively with Applied Electronics in past years on system builds including Production and Master Control rooms, technical infrastructure, and HD upgrades, Woodbine again turned to Applied Electronics to facilitate the upgrade of another broadcast control room to HD.

Working alongside Woodbine’s staff, Applied Electronics provided consultation, design, drawing, testing , and commissioning services. Woodbine’s goal was to utilize Applied Electronics’ expertise to help their staff in a ‘learn by doing’ approach.

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As such, both teams worked in concert to determine the best equipment mix, installation schedule, and resources in order to meet project goals.

The project involved upgrading the entire control room suite of equipment and infrastructure to HD which included new monitors, intercom system, routing system, terminal gear, and an Evertz DreamCatcher which is an advanced recording/replay systems.

Logistics proved to be an interesting challenge in this project, as both new HD and existing SD systems had to run in tandem during the change-over period. And of course, timeline was always a concern. The project needed to be completed, tested and proven well before their annual premier event, Queen’s Plate, on July 6, and it was accomplished two weeks prior to the deadline.

“We are very pleased with the final product,” says Bill Haist, Director of Technical Services, Broadcast Department at Woodbine Entertainment. “Applied Electronics was an integral part of our success and provided excellent service and support for our team throughout the development and build of the new systems. Their expertise and extensive knowledge base is impressive and, with each project that we’ve utilized them for, they have never disappointed us in any way.”

“It is always enjoyable working with great customers, such as Woodbine, that have a passion for the business,” says Peter Gillespie, Manager of the Broadcast Systems Group at Applied Electronics. “While this was another successful project, it certainly couldn’t have been accomplished without great cooperation, communication and understanding. We are proud to have partnered with Woodbine, again, to build another amazing facility.”

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