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TOPIC: NOC = essential...or profit generator for salesman

NOC = essential...or profit generator for salesman 19 May 2013 16:43 #40004

  • Vroooom
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I have an ancient twin cinema, and I am converting to Digital.

We are installing Barco DP2k-10SX projectors and upgrading our CR-65 processors to CP-750

Among the things we are being “sold” is the necessity for a contract with a network operations center and a corresponding high-speed internet connection.

We are fiercely independent….and I mean that very passionately….and I mean that philosophically and financially.

We also strive to keep our operations as low-overhead as possible.

With that in mind…am I actually REQUIRED to have NOC and Broadband expenses?

Im not trying to pull off anything nefarious. Im proud of our reputation with the studios and have no plan to jeopardize that.

But I would like to save a few pennies here and there to help me pay for the ridiculously inflated equipment costs.

Thanks for your insight…my sales contact…well….no further comment.
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NOC = essential...or profit generator for salesman 19 May 2013 20:46 #40007

  • Ptwin
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Do you have a vpf that requires a NOC?

If not there is no need just extra expense
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NOC = essential...or profit generator for salesman 19 May 2013 20:49 #40008

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You might want the broadband internet though.

As long as you are confident that you have someone on staff to program your digital schedule, build shows, load keys, ingest content when they are suppose to then there's no need for the networked service to do it for you.
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NOC = essential...or profit generator for salesman 20 May 2013 02:28 #40016

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Thank you for the reply.

I have no VPF.

Seems I do have an excessively ambitious salesman, though.
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NOC = essential...or profit generator for salesman 20 May 2013 04:41 #40017

  • slapintheface
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Nope you dont need it ..
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NOC = essential...or profit generator for salesman 20 May 2013 15:28 #40018

  • rodeojack
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Agreed. If not VPF, you don't need it.

However...

There is a point to be made for a NOC... at least , in my opinion, one that's separated from the ones we usually think of.

Being a drive-in owner in a sea of cookie-cutter indoor houses, I would describe myself in the independent category. Frankly, even if it didn't really mean anything, it would have taken a pretty good VPF to get me to hook my stuff up to a NOC that kept track of everything I did with my own machines.

In my case, I signed up for a service that's run by the company I bought my equipment from. I don't know that you'd call it a "NOC", as much as an ability for them to log in, check on issues I might bring up, and load software upgrades into the server and projector. As the upgrades appear to be relatively frequent, the ability to do this by remote more than pays what it would cost me to have service calls to my theatre for the purpose.

I provide technical engineering services to a number of radio stations in my state. I use this same technology to allow me to monitor, adjust and get any alarms from most of the sites I service. Without it, the time required to drive around to these sites would make it impossible for me to service so many stations.

Again... not being VPF, you don't really have an imperative reason to go with anything big from the well-known integrators. If you bought the gear, it's yours and you can do anything you want with it. I would recommend the remote login service though.

As for what kind of internet to put in there... you don't have to have anything faster than entry-level 1.5 meg DSL, if that's the best you can get. The remote login service amounts to nothing more elegant than a desktop computer that's connected to the projector(s) network. It's the same place a service tech would plug in, if he was at your booth. The computer will use something like "VNC" or "Team Viewer" to allow the service to log in. As they are doing nothing more than looking at projector status & operational logs, and loading required software upgrades, a speedy-fast connection is good, but not required.

BTW... if you were to do some kind of remote access to your projector, so you could start and monitor the status of your machine from a remote office or smart phone, the interface would plug in at the same point described here.
Last Edit: 20 May 2013 15:29 by rodeojack.
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NOC = essential...or profit generator for salesman 22 May 2013 12:25 #40030

  • bobezra
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Rodeojack

This is a topic I have been wrestling with. Is there some way I can contact you to discuss it further?

Thanks
Bob Ezra
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NOC = essential...or profit generator for salesman 22 May 2013 17:17 #40031

  • BusyBee
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I just wanted to comment on how the NOC has functioned for us. We are receiving a VPF, so we are required to have a NOC. The NOC is helpful in that they do scheduled upgrades, and they are available 24/7 to help us with any issues that we experience. When you need something replaced (a board or something) they get the part ordered and shipped ASAP and coordinate with your service techs to come out ASAP to install. However, a few times that we have called in with issues, they haven't been very helpful at all. I get the feeling that the person answering the phone has never worked with a projector, but is just typing in keywords and regurgitating the responses that their computer puts out. Once, we lost a show because the person answering the phone got to the point where he just said "I don't know" but never offered to hand the call off to someone more knowledgeable. The NOC management apologized profusely for that, but we still lost the show.

Luckily, we have had very few issues since being digital, so our interaction with the NOC has been minimal.

What I wish is that we were being remotely monitored by our service provider. As it works now, we are not supposed to call our service provider, we are supposed to call the NOC when we have an issue, and then the NOC will contact the service provider if we still need help beyond what the NOC can do. It sucks because I know if I were just to call our regular techs, they would know what is going on and be able to help because they actually work with these machines on a daily basis.

So I guess what I'm saying is-- if you aren't required to have an actual NOC, you should definitely consider contacting whoever services your theater regularly (probably same folks who are installing your equipment) and see if they can remotely monitor you. If they can remotely monitor you, they can do a lot for you without requiring a costly trip to your theater. They can log into your projectors and servers just as if they are standing in your booth and tinker around with settings and such and pull reports, instead of trying to talk you through it over the phone.

On the internet side of things, we have DSL and a separate IP address and router for our booth for security purposes. If you already have internet for your theater for credit card processing (and for living in the modern world), you don't have to do anything, except maybe order up a second static IP. It's not complicated, and your tech will be able to set that up for you.
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NOC = essential...or profit generator for salesman 23 May 2013 00:11 #40032

  • rodeojack
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Well put.


Bob... I sent you a PM

-J
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NOC = essential...or profit generator for salesman 05 Jun 2013 13:09 #40055

  • Tom
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We have NOC monitoring because we were required to by Cinedigm for our VPF. This has been a complete waste of money. We have had issues with our all four of our digital projectors, and NOC has never "foreseen" any of the problems, nor answered any questions when we called them. They send us back to our equipment provider who sold us on their "2-hour deployment of a tech." Well, even in our major metro area, their closest tech is 4 hours away. Digital is easier to run, but I have had more missed shows with digital this year than I ever had with film.
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