The 52,000-square-foot space brings together RIT’s academic strengths in game design and development, film and animation, new media design and more.
Aiming to arm its students with the finest technologies, Magic Spell Studios is a high-end center of excellence that rivals any Hollywood studio facility. The new building — the only one of its kind in the Northeast — boasts the latest in technology and design equipment, and uses a host of Christie technology, including projectors, flat panel displays and audio.
New York systems integrator Audio-Video Corporation, which was founded in 1946, carried out the installation.
“Prior to Magic Spell Studios, we lacked access to a proper digital cinema infrastructure,” says David Long, director, RIT Magic Center. “The academic programs needed proper research environments for working on advanced cinema applications. Further, RIT is heavily investing in convergent technologies across all digital media in general – from film and digital graphics to game design and development. We’ve opened up a facility that’s on the leading edge of both audio and visual quality. Our students are designing stuff that is pushing the boundaries, and it’s exciting to have that gear here in our production and exhibition spaces.”
The new building houses a 7,000-square-foot sound stage and the 180-seat Wegmans Theater, featuring a Christie CP4325-RGB pure laser projector - a DCI-compliant cinema projector using Christie RealLaser technology. Also in use is Christie Vive Audio and Dolby Atmos sound.
Sound-mixing and digital color correction rooms, game and media development labs, 2D and 3D animation labs, and an AR/VR room, as well as conference, office and other academic spaces round out the new environment.
“We have a digital media suite for color correction and for training colorists who want to work in the cinema industry,” said Long. “What we’ve built here is equivalent to what you’d find in Hollywood, Toronto, or New York City. This is a completely professional production center.
“All of the spaces – inclusive of the Christie technology – are living laboratories, not just for creatives who want content to look good, but for technologists and engineers who want to design the next wave of that technology,” said Long. “This is great for those that want to be able to operate within a professional ecosystem at a university where you might not typically expect that.”
RIT has also outfitted five classrooms with Christie HS Series 4K projectors, so that every visual presentation throughout the building is in 4K resolution. These rooms are for everyday teaching, from film and game design classes to new media design and graphic design. Additionally, RIT showcases creative content generated by students throughout the building using the Christie Access Series flat panels in a range of sizes located in the lobby, huddle spaces, and other prominent locations. These business-grade 4K UHD panels are perfect for meeting rooms and digital signage.
“What impresses me is the seamless integration of the 4K equipment in our everyday operation,” Long said. “What I see with this is as good as anything out of Hollywood.”
Christie Digital Systems USA www.christiedigital.com