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Lynyrd Skynyrd BBQ and Beer

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Lynyrd Skynyrd BBQ and Beer
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Clarity Matrix LCD Video Walls create the Ultimate entertainment restaurant experience

For Lynyrd Skynyrd, the band, one would think that the group's new restaurant in Las Vegas would be all about the sound and the food. But it's Lynyrd Skynyrd, the brand, too, and that called for a unique venue that would please all the senses and create a memorable dining and entertainment experience for patrons.

That experience comes through in both the bar and the main stage area, where ultra-large video walls from Planar deliver some of the brightest and clearest images to be found on the Las Vegas Strip. "We've found that once customers see either video wall and experience the full effect, all they can say is wow," says Craig Gilbert of Drive This! Entertainment, which selected the Planar technology for the new restaurant.

Planar Clarity Matrix: Technology with proven reliability

When Gilbert turned to FBP Systems, Inc. in planning for the video walls, he stressed that in the competitive hospitality environment, technology reliability is of prime importance. "We knew video was essential for this space and that it had to work flawlessly 24/7," says Brad Jones of FBP. "Having done a number of projects where we specified Planar technology, we knew it would be a rock-solid performer for this restaurant. It is a commercial-grade solution with a 50,000-hour life cycle, and is engineered with unique features that make service a snap if it's ever required."

Both video walls in the restaurant are comprised of Planar's Clarity™ Matrix LCD Video Wall System displays , which install on the Planar's EasyAxis™ Mounting System. "This is a great system because it makes for fast installation, and gives us quick access to any panel when necessary. We showed how a panel pivots up and away allowing a technician to get right to an adjacent panel that needs attention, and the panels can then quickly be put back in place. This made a big impression on the restaurant owners who could easily see the labor-saving and system uptime benefits," said Jones.

Content flexibility and superior image quality

Jones and Gilbert both say that Clarity Matrix's ability to display a variety of content at once also led to its selection. The back-bar wall consists of a three-wide-by-two-high (3x2) display configuration and the main stage wall is a four-wide-by-three-high (4x3) array. The content shown on each video wall has to serve the interests of different customers at the same time. "Clarity Matrix handles multiple input sources, so we could program a mix of sports broadcasting, feeds from the restaurant's live HD cameras, live video of a band on stage, and advertisements for current or upcoming performances—whatever the customers want at any given time," said Jones.

Also, the Clarity Matrix LCD display panels are large – 46" each – and tile together well. So one image on the entire video wall is dramatic. But screen partitioning is easily accommodated too. On Karaoke nights, for example, the top part of the main stage wall might typically depict a live shot of the person singing – along with the lyrics – while the bottom portion runs a banner advertising upcoming band performances. "This really gets everyone involved with what's happening at that moment, and lets them know what we have coming up," Gilbert says.

Clarity Matrix's image quality was also a major factor. "Customers watching the Super Bowl or a baseball playoff game wouldn't stand for anything less than a clear, bright picture that is true-to-life," Gilbert adds. Clarity Matrix met this challenge in a number of ways. Its tiled panels have edge-to-edge gaps of no more than 7.3mm, which creates a virtually seamless viewing surface. Panel brightness is 700 nits, resolution is 1920x1080, the contrast ratio is as high as 4500:1, and the video walls can be easily viewed from nearly 180 degree viewing angles. "In a large 8,000 square foot space like we have, these features all combine to deliver the exceptional visual experience we want our customers to have," Gilbert says.

For customers and integrators, Planar is an ideal partner

Both Gilbert and Jones give kudos to Planar for its customer commitment. According to Gilbert, "Most vendors ship you the product, take your money and that's the last you hear from them. Planar is different. They made the effort to understand what we were trying to accomplish here and then they followed up afterwards to make sure we were satisfied, which we definitely are."

Jones adds, "They're a great partner for an integrator because they understand our needs. We want consistency and repeatability in video wall technology, a well-engineered solution that is easy to install, one that keeps our labor costs down, and leads to repeat business. Planar gets all of that which is why we like working with them and why we specify their products."