Air Canada Center Flies High With New $7.8 Million Scoreboard, Control Room

By Andrew Lippe

Air Canada Centre in Toronto, Canada, home of the Toronto Maple Leafs and Raptors, has added a Mitsubishi high-definition scoreboard and a state-of-the-art control room as part of a $7.8 million deal that enhances the fan experience. It is also the first arena to install Mitsubishi black package LED technology.

Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment (MLSE) selected a Mitsubishi scoreboard system with 17 screens, including a Diamond Vision high-definition display system, after visiting arenas during the past year. “Mitsubishi boards consistently never had a service call,” says Dwayne Brown, technical producer for Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment. “Technologically speaking the uniformity in [Mitsubishi] scoreboards was second to none.”

Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment designed a custom layout for the center-hung scoreboard based around two halo rings that support the scoreboards. The top ring has eight individual Mitsubishi 10mm screens that are used for stats and marketing. Below those boards is a second halo with four 6mm LED boards that are about 18-feet across. Beneath those screens are 10mm banner boards that display scores. “The new board is essentially keeping up with the Joneses,” says Brown.

The control room features a Sony MVS-8000G production switcher, an Avid Interplay system, a Chyron HyperX2 graphics system and a six-channel EVS system. Three Sony HDC-1400 cameras and a Grass Valley LDK 4000 wireless HD camera were also installed to deliver HD images to the scoreboard.

Prior to the upgrade Air Canada Centre relied on slo-mo controllers and tape. The hurdles were getting producers to move forward into the digital world. “Our control room is 800 feet away from the equipment room,” says Brown. An Evertz fiber system connects the rooms.