Key Digital and Site on Sound Partner to Deliver Flexible Multi-purpose System


Eight years after Boy Scouts of America Northern Lights Council opened the doors to its brand new 15,000-square-foot headquarters in Fargo, North Dakota, the organization had a problem. The massive training center within the new Jon L. Wanzek Center for Scouting was plagued by a dated AV system that was beginning to fail and could not support the current resolutions offered by today’s new technology standards.

The Northern Lights Council was incorporated in 1974 following a merger of four Boy Scout Councils in North Dakota and northwestern Minnesota. The purpose of the Northern Lights Council is to help shape and mold the development of the community’s youth. Their goal is to promote and administer Scouting to all young parties throughout the council and to develop these young people through programs which stress citizenship training, character development, and physical and mental fitness. One important element of the new facility is the Shelly Ellig Training Center which acts as a hub for leadership training for the Scouts youth and adults and is also offered as a rental space to the general public, but without the ability to accommodate a variety of AV connection types from laptops, the training center was in trouble.

“I was approached by the Director of Support Services to design a solution to solve a myriad of issues in their Ellig Training Center. During my initial visit to the Scout office, we discussed three main points of concern: reliability, ease of use, and cost,” said Paul Hagen of Site on Sound. “They needed the audio split into two separate zones for dual room use, and they needed to update the video delivery system for newer devices that customers may bring. The Ellig rooms A and B are rented to the public who come in with Apple products but no access to HDMI and VGA. Of the Ellig center’s two projectors only one had HDMI access, but that HDMI balun was failing.”

Hagen knew that meeting the expectations of the Northern Lights Council was guaranteed with the solid and trustworthy hardware and software ecosystem offered by the industry-leader, Key Digital. Site On Sound and Key Digital have a long-running relationship of collaboration with countless success stories, and the installation at Jon L. Wanzek Center for Scouting would be no different.

Site On Sound in Fargo, ND is committed to providing the latest in high-quality electronics, expert custom installation, and exceptional service that’s second to none. Since 1980 they have worked closely with suppliers and top manufacturers like Key Digital to hone in on the best solutions available in the industry.

Celebrating its 21st year, Key Digital designs and engineers intuitive digital AV connectivity technology for audio, video, and control solutions that embody excellence in both commercial and residential AV. The company delivers reliable, high-quality, easy to set up and control products. From design conception to mass production, the company places its emphasis on providing quality performance, reliability, and support. The superior engineering, ease-of-installation, and versatility of Key Digital’s products showcases the company’s extensive technical knowledge and expertise in the world of digital AV connectivity, integration and automation.

“The Northern Lights Council is a non-profit organization and had a limited budget for these updates. I designed a system that contained two HDMI wall plate inputs, two projector outputs, audio de-embedding to a two-zone amplifier and the ability to matrix the system. And because Key Digital offers such a cost-effective solution set for these products, I was also able to suggest the addition of the new wireless KD-BYOD4K to complete the integration. Once the Scouts understood the benefits of adding the KD-BYOD4K to the matrix as a third input option, they were sold on its necessity and we were off and running. As the install got near completion it became clear to me that adding the BYOD device was the right decision. They really liked that technology option because the school district, various community nonprofits, and many of their other rental customers are iOS users who use iPads and such to run their meetings and may present using AirPlay.”

To solve the existing issues in the training center, Site On Sound installed the following: two KD-X2x1WDTx HDBaseT wall-plate transmitter and presentation switchers, two KD-X40MRx black box HDBaseT receivers for point-to-point extension with the wall plates, two KD-X222PO HDBaseT extender sets featuring Power over HDBaseT and professional diagnostics tools for the projector outputs, KD-BYOD4K multi-platform wireless presentation gateway, KD-Pro3 and KD-Pro6 4K/18G HDMI cables, and KD-MS4x4G 4K/18G HDMI matrix switcher with independent audio switching and de-embedding to the JBL® CSMA 2120 AMP commercial series mixer/amplifier with eight mixer-channel inputs and two output channels. The room received new Libert Plenum Shielded Cat6 cabling.

Maximizing the end-user ease of use in the Ellig Training Center proved to be effortless once KD-BYOD4K was introduced. With Key Digital’s BYOD presentation gateway, any end-user on the network may instantly and easily share content from their laptops, tablets, and smartphones without the hassle of wires. KD-BYOD4K offers full and multi-presenter modes, 4K/UHD output resolution, annotation and white board, extended monitor, content preview, mouse forwarding, moderator management and more. Its unassuming small-form factor design makes it perfect for installation behind displays, at the projector, or in the AV equipment rack.

Thanks to the versatility of the KD-BYOD4K, Hagen was even able to get the installation back on track immediately after running into issues due to the building’s guest wireless which prevented a standard plug and play operation on the device. By simply changing the connectivity to WIFI direct, the KD-BYOD4K works flawlessly and continues to offer every impressive feature promised by Key Digital.

“As mentioned, one of our biggest challenges was budget. I had to make this work within set cost parameters so we were unable to update the projectors at this time. When we did the initial bootup no video displayed on the projectors. That ended up being a simple fix, as I logged into the 4k matrix switch and adjusted the handshaking to 1080P resolution.”

Hagen and his team at Site On Sound have proven that no matter what limitation or complication may arise during the design and installation processes, nothing can stop the powerful combination of their dedicated professional integrators and Key Digital’s best-in-industry solutions.

Now when the Northern Lights Council needs to set up the room for a rental, they easily set the matrix in the locked AV room to the proper output in advance and instruct the room’s moderator to simply connect to the wall plate or wirelessly cast to immediately start presenting. The Scouts are more than happy with their operational training center and are enthused with their new BYOD options.