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Network / IP - Case Studies

Dallmeier deploys the right cards for enhanced casino security at Grand West Casino

Dallmeier equips Grand West Casino in South Africa with state-of-the-art surveillance system
The security of the guests across the entire entertainment complex and surveillance in the casino has always been a top priority
Slot machines, roulette tables and entertainment premises - the offer at the Grand West Casino near Cape Town leaves nothing to be desired. The Grand West, which is part of the Sun International Group, is the largest casino in South Africa and now also relies on video security technology from Dallmeier. It thereby follows the Golden Valley Casino which is already operating with a solution by the German manufacturer.

Grand West is a huge entertainment hub close to Cape Town in South Africa operated by the Sun International Group. The heart of the Victorian style complex is the casino building. 2,500 glitzy slot machines and 68 gaming tables - Blackjack, Poker, American Roulette among others - provide for undiluted joy of gambling at the highest stage. As with the whole facility the casino itself is designed to reflect the history of Cape Town.

The casino is surrounded by a variety of bars, bistros and restaurants, which cater for all tastes. There is, for instance, a jazz venue which offers live music on a regular basis. A cinema, a spectacular Super Bowl facility and two Ice Rinks round off the offer.

Families with kids are also welcome at the Grand West, for kids have an entire park at their disposal, which is modelled on the Fort of Good Hope dating from the year 1652. Carousels, a miniature golf course, a rollercoaster as well as a huge ship that can be boarded by the kids prevent any boredom. Finally, two hotels, the Cape Dutch City Lodge hotel and the Grand Hotel, provide convenient overnight accommodation close to the casino.

Technology in the course of time
Dallmeier enables effective casino surveillance at Grand West Casino
The DIS-2/M is a one channel audio and video encoder

The security of the guests across the entire entertainment complex and surveillance in the casino has always been a top priority, which is why the casino has been operating a video surveillance system ever since its formal opening in 2000. Meanwhile though, the originally used system no longer met the high requirements of the security personnel. For a long time, analogue recorders which recorded on VHS cassettes were used. The system was a high-maintenance installation, wear and tear parts had to be exchanged regularly and the VHS cassettes needed to be changed by hand once the magnetic tape was full.

Whenever the casino wanted to retrieve relevant image sequences for research purposes, the search was usually very laborious and time-consuming. The individual video cassettes had to be looked at one by one until the required sequence was found. Through the frequent viewing the quality of the tapes became ever worse, which meant that they often had to be exchanged.

The management thus decided to switch to digital recording. Thereby, a digital matrix was to be used for playback, while the existing analogue matrix was to be further used for displaying the live images. In order to realise this, a hybrid solution had to be created. The requirements for the new system were also clearly defined for all other aspects of application: a reliable recording with highest possible availability and high-quality images which would provide detailed and clear evidence in a case of emergency.

When it came to choosing the suitable products, Regensburg based CCTV/IP expert Dallmeier came out on top. Sun International Group has already made positive experience with the German company during the installation work at the Golden Valley Casino.

Recording with 99.99994% availability

Jaco Coetzee, who is the Director for Gaming Compliance and Tables at Sun International, explains: "Particularly the high availability and reliability of the system were main reasons for our decision to choose Dallmeier."

Thanks to a sophisticated technology and intelligent structure (modular concept) the Dallmeier video system achieves an availability of 99.99994%. This is made possible by storing the data directly at the encoder, the DIS-2/M. Therefore, recording is network-independent, which means it remains intact even in the case of disturbances or a complete network failure.

The DIS-2/M is a one channel audio and video encoder, designed for the installation and operation in a 19" module rack. The system is highly service- and maintenance friendly. If a disruption occurs, the defective components can be replaced channel by channel. Owing to the HotPlug functionality of the modules the exchange can be carried out during operation, thus reducing downtime to a minimum. All in all, more than 900 channels with a total storage capacity of over 500TB are operated at the Grand West Casino.

Dallmeier's surveillance equipment bolsters casino security
To facilitate total control and administration of the CCTV system, 22 operator stations were installed
User-friendly management

In order to facilitate total control and administration of the CCTV system, a total of 22 operator stations were installed. Fifteen of these workplaces are equipped with a PView Station PVS IV Plus, a stand-alone evaluation and management station for Dallmeier recorders. Its high-performance CPU allows for a judder-free video display at high image quality in up to 14 independent splits.

The other seven workstations are equipped with the security management system SeMSy®, which facilitates an efficient control of the complete installation. For example it offers, among other things, an easy-to-use graphic user interface and the possibility to integrate site plans to allow for an intuitive camera selection.

Frank Oetjen, Dallmeier Sales Manager for Southern Africa, explains: "We designed the system together with Sun International. Based on the customer's special requirements the system has been customised in order to achieve highest efficiency for the casino's CCTV operation. With the Dallmeier SeMSy® management system Grand West Casino is very well prepared for the possible next step of migrating to a full-IP matrix solution."    

Custom-made casino solutions

With its new CCTV system, the Grand West Casino is in good company, as Dallmeier has long been successfully equipping casinos around the world with high-class video security technology. Frank Oetjen once again highlights the company's formula for success: "Like other projects before, the Grand West Casino has again demonstrated that the high requirements regarding video surveillance cannot be met by standard mass products. Only a tailor-made solution whose individual components are all specifically developed and manufactured with the conditions in casinos in mind can provide the quality and high availability which is partly required by law and is thus so important to casinos."

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