The excitement begins the moment you enter the World of Speed museum, located
near Portland, Oregon. As you explore the facility, you’re surrounded by classic race
cars, motorcycles, and boats, along with a wealth of educational exhibits and
hands-on activities. Inspired and informed by the racing tradition of the Pacific
Northwest, the non-profit museum offers automotive classes, race car simulators,
and impressive interactive exhibits, as well as event spaces. Throughout the
museum are audio and video systems managed with Symetrix Radius 12×8 EX
digital signal processors.
“Currently the museum has 11 spaces, and they are expanding,” relates Michael
Sanders of Portland-area systems integrator Delta AV, which designs and installs
the facility’s AV systems. “We initially looked at the museum’s system as a whole
and went through each system individually and broke it down into its components.
We then designed an AV system that could be controlled from a touch panel or iPad
app from pretty much anywhere in the facility. We made it as future-proof and
expandable as possible.”
Symetrix Radius 12×8 EX DSPs are at the heart of multiple systems in the museum.
For an exhibit about Utah’s famed Bonneville Salt Flats, where land speed records
are often broken, the museum staff wanted to show a car speeding across the salt
flats. It’s accomplished with an eight-projector video wall spanning 130 feet wide by
12 feet tall that displays a seamless image that scrolls across the entire width of
the screen. A Radius 12×8 EX DSP manages eight audio zones so that as the image
scrolls, audio signals “travel” along with the image, giving an aural, as well as
visual, representation of a car hurtling across the Salt Flats.
While impressive, the Bonneville exhibit is just one of many ways the facility uses
Symetrix Radius DSPs. A Radius 12×8 EX unit manages the audio for a drive-in
theatre with a 25-foot screen. An additional Radius 12×8 EX handles audio for the
museum’s large boardroom, which also is rented to corporations for
videoconferences. Included are four Dante-enabled paging zones within the
museum, all managed by Radius DSPs so the system can be controlled from
Another highlight is the interactive Wall of Sound. “The Wall of Sound is wonderful,”
enthuses Sanders. “It’s an exhibit about the relationship between cars and music.
The Wall of Sound uses a Brown Innovation directed-energy speaker with an NEC
32-inch monitor and a motion sensor. As you walk by the exhibit, the system starts
playing one of eight or nine songs and videos about cars. They range from the first
rock ‘n’ roll car song, Jackie Brenston and Ike Turner’s 1951 ‘Rocket 88,’ through ZZ
Top hits of the 1980s. The content is driven by a Brightsign interactive media
player, and of course the audio is managed with a Radius.”