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Written by inavate APAC Magazine

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Located within Vinhomes Ocean Park in Hanoi, Brighton College Vietnam is a newly established international school campus affiliated with UK-based coeducational institution, Brighton College. As a reflection of its status as a prestigious educational institution, Brighton College Vietnam strived to create a comprehensive AV system that upholds this title. Today, the campus features a performing arts theatre, function rooms, and smart classrooms that are all equipped with advanced AV capabilities — placing the institution at the forefront of educational excellence.


For this project, PAVE System was appointed as the distributor while Hoang Minh Investment Technology JSC served as the systems integrator.


Bui Duc Son, director at Hoang Minh Investment Technology JSC, details how the two parties got onboard the project: “For this project, we submitted a bid to the client. Given that the solutions had to be designed and executed within a short span of three months, the client was seeking a consultant who could adhere to the strict timeframe. We were successfully appointed to execute this project and decided to go with a design-and-build approach that allowed us to take charge of both the AV designing and the installation process.”


From the outset, the end user stressed the importance of the college's prestige and insisted that it should be reflected in the AV design. Bui says: "As our client is based in the UK, they uphold standards and requirements that priorities premium audio, sound, and control systems across all spaces. Collaborating with our partners, we crafted solutions that would align with the client’s specifications while also making sure that these solutions could be supplied and deployed before the stipulated deadline.”

The end user envisioned smart infrastructure that was intuitive, user-friendly and simple to maintain and control. Bui elaborates the thought process behind the selection of technology across the different spaces: "The client was flexible and did not specify particular brands or standards to be met as they wanted to keep things relatively simple. Instead, they focused on creating solutions and outcomes that would genuinely meet their unique requirements. For instance, the specifications for classrooms were straightforward as they simply wanted an interactive screen and an audio system that would be able to complement a variety of teaching methodologies. Hence, we drew upon our expertise to explore the market and identify the best solutions within their budget, as well as solutions that could align with the project’s strict timeframe."


Given Hoang Minh Investment Technology JSC’s wealth of experience in delivering projects for clients in the education sector in Vietnam, designing an AV system that fit the bill was easy going. Bui comments: “We previously collaborated with Brighton College, so we were familiar with their preferences and requirements. Because of this, we could pinpoint niche solutions that were suitable and feasible for the project. From there, we shortlisted two to three options of technology in each category to ensure that the clients had a range of solutions they could choose from.”

Classrooms as smart hubs


The classrooms at Brighton College Vietnam needed to uphold a premium quality, as the end user intended for these spaces to serve as hubs for smart learning and collaboration between students and teachers. Furthermore, ensuring that content could be taught in an immersive and engaging manner was of paramount importance to the end user.


In line with these requirements, Promethean interactive displays were selected as the flat panel display of choice across all classrooms while an ATEM HDMI HDBaseT receiver was installed to complete the video transmission system. Bui notes: “We went with Promethean solutions due to fiscal considerations, and because the interactive displays were of impressive quality at the price point offered. As for ATEM, we are familiar with the way the solutions work so it was simple to programme the driver and connect it to third-party applications when needed. Most importantly, the delivery for ATEM’s products was much quicker than other manufacturers which helped us immensely with our tight deadlines.”


On the audio side, Biamp speakers were deployed to deliver audio of high fidelity while ensuring that sound could reach all corners of the classrooms. To complete the audio system, Kramer DSP was installed, complemented by Biamp amplifiers and Sennheiser handheld wireless microphones.

Premium projection


As the central hub of the institution where professional art and music performances come to life, the 500-seat theatre at Brighton College Vietnam stands as a crown jewel for all who enter the space. At its heart lies the centrepiece: a projector screen positioned prominently on the theatre stage, powered by Epson’s EB-PU2213B.


The projection system installed at Brighton College is a testament to the fact that projection can create life-like, captivating visuals. Bui expounds the practical reasons behind using projection in the theatre as opposed to LED: “The quality of the Epson projectors is phenomenal. There is always the option of using LED, especially in artistic spaces. Sometimes though, certain LED solutions may not be of high quality if priced at a budget-friendly cost. If we were to compare the costs of LED versus projectors, you could get much better quality with projectors for the same price.”


Bui adds: “Beyond fiscal considerations, these specific Epson projectors create visuals with vibrant colours that added a layer of dimension to the content projected on the screen. Considering that these space would be used for performances, the noise emitted from the projector mattered as well, and the Epson projectors barely make noise. Hence, it would not distract the audience. We paired these projectors with projection screens from Grandview.”


As the exclusive distributor of Epson solutions in Vietnam, PAVE System played a pivotal role in securing the supply of projectors in a timely manner. Nguyen Tien Phong, technical sales executive, from PAVE System notes: “Thankfully, none of the Epson products were impacted by shortages, so it was easy to get all the supply we needed for the project.”


Given that musical performances and live events were to be held in the theatre, ensuring top-tier audio solutions was imperative as well. To build a cohesive audio system, RCF line arrays were strategically deployed alongside Midas mixing consoles. The same solutions were also installed in function rooms scattered throughout the campus.

Challenges faced


Although the integration of tech into the existing infrastructure was executed in a successful manner, all projects come with their fair share of challenges. Bui sheds light on some of the obstacles that his team faced: “I keep stressing on this because it was a real challenge that we had to face, but we were given a short time to execute this project. As a result, we had to work full hectic days from eight in the morning to 10 at night just so we could meet the schedule. We also had to work together with the mechanical contractors to ensure that the conduits were perfectly engineered to manage our output, so there was a lot of communication and cross-collaboration involved.”


Moreover, due to the structural limitations of the theatre, the team had to forego certain ambitions. Bui says: “Initially we had wanted to install three PTZ cameras to track speakers on stage so that performances or lectures could be recorded or broadcasted online. However, the lighting fixtures in the theatre posed a physical challenge to the installation process and we were not able to go ahead with the PTZ cameras. Nevertheless, the client was still beyond satisfied with the end result.”


The project concluded on a successful note, with Phang providing a clear testimony on the value of the work delivered: “Hoang Minh Investment Technology JSC is a renowned systems integrator in Vietnam and they have delivered wonderful projects across the region. We look forward to working hand in hand on more projects in the future.”


Bui concluded: “As an AV integration company, we have good working relationships with almost all the big OEMs. Ultimately, each project is unique and thus, we draw on our relationships with manufacturers to find the most suitable solutions under budget and time considerations.”

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