AV in the Gymnatorium

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Large multiple-use spaces, such as gymnatoriums, pose special challenges for projection and audio. But with a bit of thought and planning, you can find the right solutions. Kevin Burlinson, an AV associate at Shen Milsom & Wilke, recently wrote a piece for AVNetwork called “Gymnatorium Audio System Costs and Expectations.”

A “gymnatorium” is a multiple-use facility that serves as gymnasium, auditorium, and, sometimes, cafeteria.

In his piece, Burlinson shares four questions to ask about providing AV for such a space:

What are the primary functions of this multi-use space?
What are considered “nice to have” functions?
Do I need a high performing sound system or simply one that’s adaptable?
Should I defer some of the equipment costs and incorporate infrastructure that’ll support the system we need later?

Although Burlinson’s post focuses on audio, you must also consider ambient light. Since gymnatorium facilities are multi-use, the lights may need to remain on while the screen is in use. If there are windows are they shaded? If ambient light can’t be controlled, a screen with ambient light rejecting properties may be required.

Consider how many projection screens will be needed. Gymnatoriums often contain one large screen, but many of these facilities can be split into two or more smaller spaces using divider curtains or folding walls. In such instances, think about placing smaller screens so they can be used in those smaller areas. If you do go with one large screen, pay attention to screen placement and viewing angles.

You also need to think about what to do with the projector(s). Ceiling or wall mounts might be the answer. For the high ceilings typically found in a gymnatorium, a motorized lift that can be suspended from the ceiling and lower the projector down is a good option.

Draper’s tools and solutions help you tackle gymnatoriums—or any other space.

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