Located in the northwestern municipality of Taoyuan, Xpark is touted as Taiwan’s first world-class “super Xtra-sensory” aquarium. It occupies a total area of 15,000 square metres, houses some 30,000 fishes from more than 300 species and consists of 13 exhibition areas. Modelled after the famous Yokohama Hakkeijima Sea Paradise in Japan, it leverages visual technology solutions extensively to create the ‘wow’ factor and enhance the overall visitor experience.
Recognising that projection technology is highly effective in transporting visitors of all ages into the depths of the deep blue sea, Xpark Aquarium appointed Christie’s longstanding Taiwanese partner, Dacoms Technology, which has over 30 years of experience in ProAV installations, to install and commission the projection and image processing systems across the facility. Dacoms accomplished the digital projections using 35 Christie DWU850-GS 1DLP laser projectors, 25 Christie Captiva DHD410S 1DLP ultra short throw laser projectors, as well as an array of Christie Pandoras Box Compact Players, Pandoras Box Media Players and Pandoras Box Widget Designer.
“Xpark Aquarium is arguably one of the most complex and demanding installs that we have partaken in recent years, but it is also very rewarding and satisfying,” says Terence Lee, Product Manager, Dacoms Technology. “We have deployed a total of 60 Christie 1DLP laser projectors to illuminate four major exhibition zones with dazzling floor and wall projections that perfectly complement the fascinating marine life on display. The projected contents are driven by the versatile Christie Pandoras Box Compact and Media Players.”
Lee noted that various factors including long-lasting laser illumination, performance, colour accuracy and dependability are considered when deploying projection equipment in this modern aquatic museum. “Not only do the projectors have to display life-like images and natural colour reproduction, they also need to be rugged enough to withstand high-usage conditions, and yet operate silently without impacting the visitor experience.”
Christie’s GS and Captiva Series laser projectors, with their powerful performance, small form factor and ultra-quiet operation, met all the stringent requirements and emerged as the ideal systems for this installation. The projectors are paired with Christie Pandoras Box Compact and Media Players, which are designed for 24/7 use and is built using server-grade hardware, for maximum performance and reliability.
“We have also created a customised program using the Widget Designer that enables the Pandoras Box Compact and Media Players to automatically switch on or shut down all the projectors, audio equipment, playback systems, as well as display and lighting systems in the aquarium according to the opening and closing times. This powerful feature has helped to automate these daily tasks and allows the aquarium’s employees to focus on other areas of their work,” Lee adds.
Officially opened on August 7, Xpark Aquarium has become the most popular attraction in Taiwan and tickets to the facility are in high demand. Exhibition zones that feature Christie projections, such as “Diving in Coral Sea”, “Rainforest Adventure” and “Healing Jellyfish” are a hit with visitors as the displayed visuals create a heightened sense of immersion and illusion that they are exploring a mysterious and exciting underwater world.
The end results of the projections across various exhibition zones have exceeded expectations, with visitors and the aquarium’s management lauding the images as a “stunning display of art and visual technology” that transforms the look and feel of each zone, which in turn increases the overall appeal of Xpark Aquarium.
Michael Bosworth, Executive Vice President, Enterprise, Christie, comments, “We are delighted that Dacoms has accomplished a wonderful installation at Xpark Aquarium, where visitors can enjoy amazing digital projections that complement the aquarium’s themes. Christie’s GS and Captiva laser projectors, combined with the powerful and robust Christie Pandoras Box family of image processing solutions, open a world of creative possibilities and enable users in every application imaginable to deliver amazing visual experiences.”