When the owner of a private Tupolev 154 airliner wanted to make his jet more like home, he turned to Kramer and Sierra Video Systems for a luxury home theater system. With the goal of providing a versatile selection of high-quality video and audio reproduction for passengers, the airliner was equipped with electronics technology that would allow entertainment to be enjoyed in each of the airplane’s four passenger compartments.
Originally a “workhorse” plane for domestic Russian flights, the Tupolev 154 design is similar to a Boeing 727, but with lower ceilings and smaller passenger doors. This private jet’s interior had already been transformed to include comfortable leather seating for approximately 25 people, couches, wooden cabinetry and tasteful lighting. The team at company Aerostyl in Russia, brought Kramer and Sierra Video Systems products on board to create an audio/video system to match the luxurious design. Each passenger compartment was equipped with various-sized LCD panels that could display video programming selected from four DVD players, a VCR, a karaoke machine, a video camera and an Airshow server. Audio is also available from three CD changers in the system. Passengers can control the system using the individual remote controls available in each compartment. The flight attendant also has a remote control.
All of the composite video and stereo audio is distributed through the Sierra Video Systems Lassen 1208VS 12 x 8 matrix switcher, located in the control room behind the pilot’s cabin. Three Kramer PT-102A 1:2 distribution amplifiers are connected to the switcher for high-quality audio. The switcher can be controlled from its front panel, or via RS-232 or RS-485 interfaces, and the installation features use of all of these options. RS-232 interface connects the switcher to an Alpine computer processor that features its own 7-inch display. Each of the passenger remote controls are wired to the computer processor using the RS-485 interface. Video and audio can be switched independently, so passengers can select their favorite CDs or audio programming, or they can watch two separate video programs within the compartment. Each passenger compartment also features a Kramer VM-30AV 1:3 distribution amplifier for audio and video. The product’s high bandwidth ensures clear signal reproduction even in long cable runs. The Tupolev’s longest cable run is 20 meters from the switcher. The audio installation features power amplifiers linked to loudspeakers, subwoofers and personal headphone connectors in the passengers’ seats. It also required acoustic shielding to silence the engine noise, and sound isolation was added to each of the passenger compartments. While passengers are enjoying a seamless video and audio experience, Kramer and Sierra Video Systems are bringing home theater home, even on the road.