Escapism: Alien Zoo

Escapism is a group of escape rooms located around Portland. If you haven’t experienced what they have to offer, I highly recommend giving it a shot! The Ohm crew got to experience the Alien Zoo room first hand as we looked for clues and solved puzzles that would help us "escape". It was a lot of fun and was nice to see some of the systems we design and install in action.
The Alien Zoo is an escape room currently at the NE Wielder location. During the hour long escape, hosts monitor puzzlers progress over a video feed and provide clues, trigger sound effects, and help guide the experience. We installed QSC recessed ceiling speakers in each room that connect to a remote volume control. A DBX room combiner and an audio input for the host connection is located in a secret room with a wall mounted rack to hold all the audio system equipment.
Working with the Escapism team was a lot of fun. They had a good idea of their needs and were able to express them in detail. That kind of communication makes projects run smoothly and ultimately successful. We’re very excited to try their next escape room. You can finds details about their escape rooms at escapismportland.com.
- James Jacobsen, Sales & Design Consultant

 

Riverbend Residence

It would be hard to find a more beautiful setting for a home than this one perched above the Willamette River in West Linn, OR. When our client purchased this property, there were existing Whole Home Audio, Lighting Control and Home Automation Systems in place, but after surveying what was there, we decided together to update all of those systems in addition to adding some others.
Simplicity of the user interface was of utmost importance on this project (as it is on all of our automation projects). The client wanted a system that would be extremely powerful, automating Whole Home Audio Video, Home Theater, Lighting Control, Shade Control (motorized roller blinds throughout), thermostat or HVAC Control in addition to control of the gate system and a few IP Cameras located around the perimeter of the house. They also wanted to have the ability to control those systems from any iOS device, tablet or smartphone. The final request was that the system be user friendly enough that any guest would be able to operate the system with little or no training. We happily accepted the challenge, and we’re glad we did!
While this project was a fun technical challenge (which is always satisfying), there was another big positive on this one. The clients turned out to be some of the kindest, warmest people we’ve met! It’s always nice when we can do what we excel at on a project, and at the same time, grow our Ohm Systems family with new friends, clients and partners!
- Chad Baldwin, President

 

Tanner Creek Tavern

We’re proud to highlight our recent project at Tanner Creek Tavern, David Machado’s new restaurant located in the Pearl at the Hampton Inn. It was clear from our initial discussions regarding the design that David and Daren both have high standards for A/V systems in their restaurants, especially high quality audio. We spent a good amount of time talking about music, establishing that common ground made it easy to work with them and ultimately helped create a successful project.
Meeting expectations by achieving high quality audio can be a challenge in a lot of commercial applications. Speaker placement, room reflections, visual aesthetics, and competing sound from guests can prohibit traditional speaker installations from sounding the way we’d like them to. The approach we took with the audio system design at Tanner Creek relied on high quality pendant speakers and subwoofers distributed throughout the restaurant. The subwoofers accent the low frequency range of music but don’t overpower the speakers like you might experience in a club or live sound setting. The system is controlled by independent volume knobs at the host stand allowing volume to be changed per zone. For example, the music in the dining area may be lower than in the bar area to allow a more intimate experience for guests sitting down to a meal. The bar has great sound as well and still allows you to have a conversation with the person next to you, come have a drink and see for yourself. It’s worth it!
We also designed and installed A/V systems for two conference rooms that can be combined into one large space or divided to create smaller huddle rooms depending on the customer’s needs. The rooms include 65” flat screen displays, access to streaming music, auxiliary audio and video inputs, video distribution, as well as wired and wireless network connectivity. As we are a turn-key low voltage company, we also installed data cabling and a surveillance system in the restaurant. These systems can be overlooked in the initial design off a commercial space but are extremely important in the day to day operation of any business. It’s our job to make sure our customers have reliable systems to allow them to focus on what they do best. Let us help you with your new project!
- James Jacobsen, Sales & Design Consultant

 

Opal Bar

We were happy to partner again with the Chefstable Group on Opal, the bar located inside the Dossier hotel in downtown Portland. For this project, Ohm was asked to design and install an audio system that blends into complex and ornate ceilings in both the bar and dining areas. Opal is another great examples of Chefstable's ability to create an amazing dining and entertainment experience.
  Designing the audio system was certainly a challenge as the bar ceiling didn’t allow a lot of room for speaker mounting. It took coordinated communication with the carpenters and contractor to get the speakers in the right location. The painted thin bezel speaker grills in the bar highlight the attention to detail throughout the establishment. In the end, we installed a system that includes 3 audio sources (2 Sonos connects and 1 aux input), local volume control for 4 zones, subwoofers in both dining and bar zones, and hidden speakers above the dining area.
- James Jacobsen, Sales & Design Consultant

Photo: Dina Avila Photography

Photo: Dina Avila Photography

 

Uncorked Studios

Uncorked Studios is a product design firm with a very creative vibe. The open concept floor plan of their office allows designers to easily collaborate on projects for first time startups and fortune 100 companies alike. The centerpiece of the space is a large staircase with benched seating. It's primary use is for all hands meetings and special events. We worked closely with John and Miguel to design an A/V presentation system to fit their unique space and needs.
The backbone of the audio system is a Symetrix DSP and Lab Gruppen amplifiers. JBL commercial speakers are installed at the front of the room and provide true stereo imaging for audio playback from the video switcher, Sonos Connect, aux audio input, and a phono input for a record player. Audio Technica wireless microphones and a wired microphone input at the front of the room allow presenters a variety of sound reinforcement options. Speakers are installed in the restrooms to allow attendees to listen to the presenters at all times.
The video system is composed of a 7500 lumen Epson projector and 12’ Dalite screen. HDMI inputs are located at the front of the stage and at the rack, which is located at the top of the stairs and serves as the primary A/V control position.
The control system provides complete control of both the audio and video systems. Wall mounted push button controls located at both the front of the room and the rack allow users to make fine adjustment of all sound levels and video switching from either position.
Working with the team at Uncorked was a pleasure and the communication of their needs was ideal. We look forward to using all the innovative products they help bring to the world.
- James Jacobsen, Sales & Design Consultant

 

Finger Bang Division

We had the pleasure of working again with Finger Bang at their new Division location, which is a must see for anyone who is familiar with the local nail salon. We installed a killer audio system to match the vibe of the Sandy location. It’s a two zone system composed of pendant speakers backed by a discreet wall mounted subwoofer. The reception and salon zones are independently controlled by Sonos on an installed flush mount iPad located at reception. The iPad provides easy access to volume controls and music selection for both zones, while the amplifier, Sonos Connect, and other equipment are housed out of sight in a rack in a storage room.
We also installed a professional surveillance system that Finger Bang employees can access easily from their smartphone. All of the equipment is mounted out of the way and connected by wire that matches the ceiling color. We strive to meet a high standard of quality in all of our work and aim to blend in with the room as much as possible because it matters to us. Glynis was great to work with, as always and we all love how the final product came together!
- James Jacobsen, Sales & Design Consultant

 

NTEN Conference room

Recently we worked on a project for a huddle space at NTEN, a membership organization of nonprofit technology professionals. They communicate with numerous members remotely on the Google Hangouts platform. Standing meetings in the huddle space are designed to help members work together on projects and intelligible audio on both sides of the meeting is critical. Without a dedicated audio codec and beam forming microphones, audio was distant, hollow, and hard for their remote counterparts to understand. To make things worse, people locally had to ask their remote partners to speak up because the TV audio wasn’t loud enough to cover the huddle space.
Ohm Systems created a solution for these issues with a simple and clean install of two ceiling microphones and four ceiling speakers positioned to cover all areas of the huddle space. The robust sound reinforcement and high audio quality makes it easy to understand what people are saying in the Hangout. The remote participants enjoy exceptional audio from the huddle space as well, beam forming microphones do an amazing job of covering the space evenly.
It was a pleasure working with James and the team at NTEN. They were very easy to communicate with and we enjoyed the whole process. It’s nice to see them use their new A/V conferencing system!
- James Jacobsen, Sales & Design Consultant

 

Couch 9 Apartments

Couch9 is a modern 11-story luxury apartment building in the heart of Portland’s Pearl District. For this project, Ohm Systems, LLC. worked closely with local developer Urban Asset Advisors and Vallaster Corl Architects. Ohm worked hard to seamlessly incorporate advanced audio/video technology into the refined design found throughout the amenities spaces at Couch9 including the leasing office, wine room, fitness studio, club room, and roof deck. On the ground floor you'll find recessed ceiling speakers from Sonance with square grilles to complement the sleek recessed lighting. Background music content and volume is easily controlled using a wifi-enabled tablet or smart phone. Sound is integrated seamlessly with a Sony 65” 4K television for a clean appearance. Touchscreens were used throughout Couch9 to ensure a simple, trouble-free user interface.
The crown jewel of Couch9 is the 11th floor Club Room and roof top deck, featuring a stunning view. The 75” television is mated to a custom-width James sound bar speaker for a clean, integrated appearance. All equipment is securely mounted in a wall-mounted rack located in the adjacent electrical closet to prevent unauthorized access.
- Josh Seitz, VP Sales & Design

 

Dry Hollow Elementary School

Recently we worked with Dry Hollow elementary in The Dalles, OR to design and install an audio system for a small gymnasium that is used as a multi purpose room. These types of A/V systems can be a challenge to design as they need to be versatile as well as very easy to use for daily operation. The rack needed to be a lockable, ergonomic, and have a rugged design to withstand impact from PE activities. In addition, it needed the capacity and flexibility to be used in sound reinforcement for plays and school presentations. The system is composed of 4 wireless microphones with external antennas for robust connectivity, a media player that includes CD, USB, Bluetooth, and aux sources, a rack mount mixer, a rack drawer to store microphones, a Crown XTI amplifier with DSP, 2 JBL CBT column array speakers and a 18” powered JBL subwoofer. The system is powerful and covers the space very well. It may be the best sounding audio system in town! Working with Dry Hollow Elementary was a great experience. Their team had everything in place and ready to go when we arrived, so we were able to complete the job in one day. It was also nice to meet a PTA member during the install as they were instrumental in raising the funds to pay for the system.
- James Jacobsen, Sales & Design

 

Reedwood Friends Church

Reedwood Friends is a very warm and inviting community, it was an honor to be a part of their A/V project. It’s easy to see that their staff really care about their congregation and building, which made working with them a breeze. As in many church sanctuaries, speech intelligibility is a real challenge. The ceilings are high and most surfaces are hard and flat, making it difficult for people in the room to understand what others are saying. The existing audio system was old and didn’t have the advantages of modern technology creating massive audio feedback zones and low quality sound reinforcement. This was a clear use for a JBL column array speaker pair, which you can see in the photos. They have a very wide horizontal dispersion that covers most of the room. Adding the 2 side fills ensured that sound reaches every seat in the room! We also upgraded their system to include Crown CDI amplifiers with built in digital signal processing and an Allen and Heath QU24 live mixing console. Reedwood now has the ability to send audio to and from their stage over CAT6 cable, greatly reducing the need for copper in the project. Finally we installed a fixed position projector to fit their old existing projection room at the rear of the sanctuary. They were used to bringing a projector out to the stage every time they needed to put something on the screen. Now, with the push of a button they can have a large, bright image up in no time. I can easily say that this was one of my favorite jobs I’ve done in the house of worship community. We look forward to being a part of many more!
- James Jacobsen, Sales & Design

 

US Army Corps of Engineers

This was Ohm’s first project with the US Army Corps of Engineers, and it was a neat one! We designed and installed a conference room system that consists of 6 video wall displays in a unique orientation, input jacks for up to 6 separate video sources, and a complete sound and automation system. The screens can display either 6 unique images, or the 4 center screens can be combined to create one large video wall image when needed. We also designed and programmed a complete automation system to handle all of the behind the scenes switching of the video content, and screen assignment, power, etc. A well programmed automation system can make even somewhat complicated systems incredibly simple to use.
- Chad Baldwin, President

 

Century Bar

Century Bar features a stadium seating approach to watching live sporting events, movies, and customer provided content in their main viewing room. The video system includes a video matrix, projectors, screens and displays throughout the bar and is controlled through a touchscreen. This creates a flexible interface that permits video switching and one-touch control for projector and screen power. The room is also used for DJ nights and special events that require high quality audio at high volume, so it was important for us to design an audio system that was robust and intelligble enough to meet these needs. The visual aesthetics of the design were very important to the customer, and we were able to offer solutions that met these aesthetic expectations.
- James Jacobsen, Sales & Design Consultant

 

Urban Works Real Estate

Urban Works wanted a clean, modern look in their SE Portland conference room. We were able to install all of the necessary equipment behind the video screen, alleviating the need for a piece of furniture, cabinet or AV rack in the room. The entire system is controlled by an in-wall touchscreen and all of the source selection, video aspect adjustment and power sequencing have been automated to create a user friendly system that will allow the folks at Urban Works to effectively use the equipment instead of wasting valuable meeting time trying to figure out how to get an image on the screen.
- Chad Baldwin, President

 

Zupan's Burnside

Zupan’s markets take the overall appearance of their stores seriously. These are beautiful retail spaces with incredibly well curated selections of high quality products. Ohm was able to work closely with Zupan’s when it came time to implement digital signage displays into their West Burnside store. Take a look at our work with signage for menu boards in the coffee shop, specials and valuable info in the juice bar, and a full replacement of all of the deli area signage with crisp, clean and easy to edit digital displays throughout. With a properly designed and installed signage system, clients like Zupan’s Markets can make adjustments to displays either locally at the store, or send updates to displays at multiple locations from a remote location. The management of digital signage systems has never been easier or more powerful. Just think of what a properly implemented digital display can do for your business.
- Chad Baldwin, President

 

Pearl Tavern

What a fun collaboration between Joey Harrington and one of Ohm’s longtime clients, the Chefstable Group! It is often the details in these situations that end up making the difference. The screens behind the bar were installed to fit perfectly into the beautiful custom millwork. The speakers were selected and placed for the best possible audio experience, while still honoring the classy overall aesthetic of the space. Although the A/V in Pearl Tavern is an important part of the experience, the technology doesn’t jump out at you when you walk through the door. We pride ourselves on our system design here at Ohm, both for the high quality audio and video experiences we provide, but also in our ability to work with your space, and your designer, architect and/or builder.
- Chad Baldwin, President

 

StarCycle Vancouver

StarCycle is not your typical spin class - it’s a visceral, full-body experience, complete with low lighting, candles and (most importantly) a thunderous audio system. Featuring JBL Professional speakers and over 3000 watts of combined power, StarCycle’s system motivates class participants and instructors alike to push beyond their limits. Just as important as sound quality is ease of use. Aside from the resident Macbook Air, the sole audio component in the studio itself is an ultra-simple 3-knob remote mixer providing independent level adjustment of microphone and music levels. All amplifiers and audio processing reside in an enclosed equipment rack hidden-away in the back office. The finishing touch was the addition of ceiling-mounted acoustical panels in the studio. Acoustical treatments reduce unwanted room reflections, reduce microphone feedback and ensure that a higher powered system like this one is truly enjoyable to listen to. We really enjoyed working with the StarCycle team and look forward to their forthcoming location in Felida, Washington!
- Josh Seitz, VP Design & Sales

 
 

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