Situated near the rivers of Rhine and Ruhr, the city of Duisburg in Germany has been enjoying the fruits of energetic investment in its urban development for quite some years now. One of the major projects now embellishing the city centre is the CityPalais. The project has seen the construction of Germany's most modern casino, owned by WestSpiel, which has an elaborate and sophisticated interior with a ‘Las Vegas' feel.

In addition to its unique environment, the casino offers an extensive range of games which in the casinos first year of operation helped to draw over 700, 00 customers to its tables alone. As is the rule in every casino, CCTV cameras are an essential feature to ensure fair gambling. Casino Duisburg needed to install cameras, which could carry the job out in full effect but without distracting attention away from the majestic interior.

To meet this requirement, it was decided that Panasonic Premier Integrator (PPi), ACC were called to carry out the installation for the project. Occupying a floor-space of 8,100 m2 (87,188 square feet) and featuring not only 35 tables but also 254 gaming machines, the area required for surveillance was vast. As a result, a comprehensive surveillance system was needed to accommodate not only the security of the game hall, but the offices and other staff areas located in the upper storeys of the building.

With such a large area to cover, ACC specified a requirement of 61 Panasonic digital video recorders to enable casino management to store surveillance recordings of the entire building for a period of seven days. The CCTV system would not only ensure the safety of staff and customers, but would also be able to record every minute of each game, which could also be used to clarify discrepancies at a table. More importantly, the system would also support the fair gambling environment. With quality surveillance recordings and the decision to work alongside the local police, the casino management have the best chance of prosecuting those who have acted unlawfully.

A total of 242 cameras were specified by ACC, with cabling vendor Barox installing the fibre optic signal transmission system. Each area within the casino required different uses for the CCTV cameras. For example, due to the law, which prohibits the use of biometric readers, the CCTV needed to provide an overview of the entrance as a tool for checking member access. The security staff can check for suspicious behaviour and compare with any notes on that particular persons membership. Due to German law, the CCTV cameras had to be positioned facing downwards and not at an angle so that irregular activity can be monitored effectively without recording customers faces and protecting their identity.

The CCTV system would not only ensure the safety of staff and customers, but would also be able to record every minute of each game
As is the rule in every casino, CCTV cameras are an essential feature to ensure fair gambling
Cameras were also required within the casino reception, and at the entrances to both slot machines and the live game tables. To meet this requirement, cameras were installed in and around the 354 slot machines with two cameras per live table. Additional dome cameras were also installed where needed.

Panasonic EV-CZ252 cameras were installed above each live game table to ensure a high level of security for each game. There are many different chip colours all ranging of various values. Due to this, the security of each table is extremely important as it enables the casino security staff to double check every chip by watching-back the surveillance recording in the event of a customer discrepancy.  Sharpness of the colour footage was seen as a key-contributing factor to the choice of the Panasonic cameras. Being able to see the colour of the chips clearly enables each chip to be identified with a specific value. This may be required, for instance, in the event that a player claims they bet a different amount to what the croupier has paid out, is to view the colour of the chips in the recordings. Panasonic cameras benefit from excellent colour variation and so were an obvious choice.

In addition to the main control room, Panasonic monitors were also installed in a hidden cupboard on the gaming floor so that casino management can quickly check for any irregular activity or suspected cheating on tables.

Featuring 18 American roulette tables, eight blackjack tables, four poker tables and 24 multi-roulette clients, the Duisburg casino is a real state-of-the-art gambling venue attracting visitors from far and wide. With its high specification Panasonic CCTV system controlled by WJ-SX650 matrix system, Casino Duisburg guarantees its guests not only a safe but also fair environment to enjoy the top-class surroundings, atmosphere and excitement of the unique venue.

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