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HIVE Media Players chosen for Frameless, UK’s first permanent immersive arts experience

HIVE Media Players chosen for Frameless, UK’s first permanent immersive arts experience

UK – A deployment of HIVE Player_3 4K and 8K media players have been selected for Frameless, London’s first permanent digital immersive arts experience.

Situated in the new Marble Arch Place Complex venue, Frameless blends digitalised art, phenomenal creative vision and cutting edge entertainment technology to present a cultural attraction like no other.

The project has been brought to critically acclaimed fruition by figureheads from the worlds of tech, art, architecture and experiential events to showcase iconic works of art as they’ve never been seen before, via immersive, state-of-the-art video projection.

Creative Technology (CT) delivered the video solution sitewide including projection, digital signage, LED and media servers. HIVE media players, a new generation of carbon-footprint-friendly computers use ten times less power than many market equivalents. This sustainable product choice effortlessly powers the artistic displays that not only cover the walls, but the ceilings and the floors across a staggering 30,000 sq. ft space.

Digital interpretations of 40 masterpieces from 28 artists including Klimt, Monet, Rembrandt and van Gogh lead visitors through the carefully curated spaces; Beyond Reality, Colour in Motion, The World Around Us and the Art of Abstraction.

Working closely alongside CT UK’s systems integration department, Dave Green, Mark Calvert and the team at HIVE Media Players advised on technical solutions, and as video playback vendor, helped to steer the design of the video system for the audiences’ bright and colourful journey.

Deploying a total of 19 Player_3 systems, the right result hinged on highly accurate synchronisation. HIVE technical director, Dave Green, elaborates: “Synchronisation is the key element that holds everything together in an installation like this. The HIVE Player_3 system offers SDI outputs with GenLock from a reference signal and this ensures from device to device, everything is perfectly in sync.

“The video mapping at Frameless is very much at the cutting edge of what’s possible right now. This was achieved in part by CT using Front Pictures Screenberry software for automated camera-based calibration.”

The 8K 25fps equirectangular video playback used in Frameless’s largest space is at the top end of what the HIVE Player_3 device is capable of. Green continues: “The output resolution from the HIVE players is running at 50Hz, but the content was provided in 8K 25fps, so we needed to use the AiM codec interframe interpolation feature to ensure we achieved a smooth video playback on the larger surfaces, and in 8K, that's fairly challenging.”

CT UK’s head of integration, Graham Bunyan, explains how Green added technical expertise to the nuances of this unique project: “It wasn't just understanding the final playback, which is ultimately the result of all this hard work, but the relationship that CT built with HIVE was essential for success; we understood at every stage what the technical challenges were going to be.”

Utilising the latest embedded GPUs developed by NVIDIA, HIVE was able to offer Frameless outstanding performance in a small package at an enviable price point, which in HIVE’s case, doesn’t mean a compromise on quality.

Simon Kentish, Frameless CTO, says: “HIVE’s value for money is amazing in terms of its delivery, its form factor, and its integration with products like Screenberry. It’s right for us, and we’ll be using it moving forward.”

The technical design ingenuity of Frameless also augmented 50 3-Chip DLP of Panasonic laser projectors, which helped to deliver 479 million pixels and one million lumens.

Head of Panasonic UK, Gareth Day, comments: “Although HIVE is a relatively new company; we worked with Dave Green and Mark Calvert on the National Museum of Qatar, and subsequently on the UAE Pavilion and Expo 2020, we’ve found them a great team to work with. It was absolutely fantastic to deal with them again on Frameless.”

After 12 months of preparation before its Autumn opening, Green reflects on Frameless’s hugely successful reception: “It's not until the venue opens, and you see the public immersed in the experience, that you really understand what was being created. HIVE is so proud to have worked alongside such experts on a project assembled by a world-class team; the results speak for themselves.”

photos: Antonio Pagano

HIVE Media Players chosen for Frameless, UK’s first permanent immersive arts experienceHIVE Media Players chosen for Frameless, UK’s first permanent immersive arts experience

29th November 2022

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