Town of Gilbert

Town of Gilbert, AZ
Government access channel goes from basic bulletin board to broadcasting live with all-in-one NEXUS video server
Looking for multiple features to fit a municipal budget, the Town of Gilbert, AZ chose a LEIGHTRONIX video server
Audio Video Specialist, Todd Hamilton
The Town of Gilbert’s audio video specialist, Todd Hamilton, was initially impressed with the features of the NEXUS video server. Almost five years later, he continues to be impressed by the product’s reliability.

When Audio Video Specialist Todd Hamilton first started working with the Town of Gilbert’s government access channel six years ago, the channel was mainly used to provide citizens with access to a community bulletin board. Now, having updated the station’s four VHS decks to a NEXUS® video server, the city offers citizens a wide variety of community specific programming, including weekly live broadcasts.

“As soon as we upgraded to the NEXUS we were able to broadcast a lot more information,” Hamilton said. “Having that kind of access to information is something that the community has really embraced. The feedback that we’ve gotten has shown that people have become more and more dependent on our programming.”

The station’s small staff currently offers residents a monthly magazine show highlighting upcoming events in the community, a talk show hosted by the mayor who interviews important people throughout the town, and a news show that provides a condensed version of what has happened within the different meetings throughout the week. This programming is in addition to the town’s weekly live broadcasts.

“The most popular things that we broadcast are the council meetings, planning meetings, and study sessions,” Hamilton said. “We broadcast all of that live and then each event is also recorded to the NEXUS so that we can rebroadcast it throughout the weeks after.”

Broadcasting content live for viewers has been a vital part of keeping the community involved in decisions that affect the area, according to Hamilton.

“There’s something to be said about watching live TV even in the age of the DVR,” he said. “Allowing viewers to watch the meetings as they happen allows for a feeling of involvement. You feel like you are there, or feel like you’re a part of the community in learning about what’s happening at the same time those within the meeting room are learning about it. That is the element that people don’t want to miss and a lot of people tune in to our live meetings for that reason.”

The NEXUS provides the Town of Gilbert a solution that can be managed by one person during a live meeting and also programmed and handled by multiple users.
The Town of Gilbert found the all-in-one NEXUS video server provided the best value when comparing features and price with other video server solutions.

The NEXUS makes broadcasting live easy, offering simultaneous operation of all playback and recording channels.

Hamilton was first introduced to the NEXUS video server during the National Association of Broadcasters Exposition in Las Vegas, when the town was considering upgrading to a digital broadcast device amongst other video production equipment.

“When we stopped by the LEIGHTRONIX booth, we immediately realized they had exactly what we needed,” Hamilton said. “I remember the software itself was very user friendly and we could quickly get in and do exactly what we wanted to do. We came back and made a presentation to our boss of priorities and what we wanted to upgrade to and very quickly. Even above the cameras, LEIGHTRONIX rose to the top, making the NEXUS the first major purchase since I started working here.”

When looking to upgrade to a digital video server that year, it was extremely important that the solution be one that was dynamic in its functionality but still manageable for a small staff.

“The Town of Gilbert has over 200,000 citizens and our entire production is run by three people, so it was very important to us to find a product that could be run by one person during a live meeting and could be programmed and handled by three people individually without any problems,” Hamilton said.

The three person staff utilizes the server’s included scheduling software for 24/7 unattended video system operation. The software includes an easy-to-use drag and drop scheduling interface, error checking with conflict reporting, and control from remote locations using the server’s WebNEXUS™ brower-based interface.

Beyond the server’s ease-of-use, having used the product for over four years, Hamilton feels one of the product’s best features is its reliability.

“We’ve had the NEXUS for going on five years now and we haven’t had a single issue with it,” Hamilton said. “The NEXUS has been a really good workhorse for us. This is a product we can rely on to get our community information out to the people who want to watch it.”

Hamilton also appreciates the company’s dedication to staying on top of new evolving technology and updating the town’s NEXUS through free firmware upgrades as advancements are made.

“LEIGHTRONIX is very serious about keeping on the edge of what’s coming up and what’s important to communities,” Hamilton said.

When considering all of the features of the product, it was the overall value that convinced the Town of Gilbert to purchase the NEXUS. When comparing the product’s price and features with the price and features of other server solutions, the NEXUS quickly rose to the top.

“When we were considering our digital upgrade, we really did our research,” Hamilton said. “We don’t have the budget to say let’s try this and see if it works out and if it doesn’t we’ll try something new. We considered every company that handled video broadcast and streaming solutions. We chose LEIGHTRONIX for simply being the best bang for the buck. The NEXUS was really good at doing what we wanted to get done at a price we were willing to pay. For that reason, I highly recommend the NEXUS.”

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