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Portable LCD holds up to tough conditions at Amoco

"On a good day everything falls into place," says Larry Prohaska, AV Specialist for Amoco Corporation in downtown Chicago, "but on a bad day you have to be in two places at once. It can be anything from adjusting the heat to figuring out why the image is not showing on a video projector, or why the image is on the projector and not on the laptop."

Prohaska has a tough job. With just three associates, he supports 55 meeting rooms in four meeting centers in two buildings downtown. "We support the senior executives in their boardroom and the crisis management group. But our bread and butter is the Employee Development Center in the Prudential and the Meeting and Dining Center in the Amoco Building." In addition, Prohaska handles the purchasing of a/v and computer display equipment for the two buildings.

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Reliability becomes a big issue when support is spread thin, as does the satisfaction of the group’s internal customers. The last thing the a/v staff needs is a projector that’s gone down, but even requests for minor image adjustments can be painful, with this many meetings starting at once.

"We started buying LCD panels," says Prohaska, "as computer presentations became popular in 1989. But we didn’t like them. We preferred 37" monitors, because they were easier to set up and produced a better image. A couple of years ago I saw the first portable LCD projector I liked. I called Doug Carnell and bought one, and it was a big hit. Since that time I’ve been looking for something similar, but better and brighter. Then the Sony came along."

"One thing we found we needed was a unit portable enough to go between 2 buildings, but bright enough to work in sunlit rooms. The Sony is the best we’ve found. It’s brighter than the other portables, and the image is more uniform." Better still, the projector keeps working with minimal care. "It really seems to be working very well."

Prohaska has also been pleased with the service from United Visual. "Doug has been a real find for us. He’s a good source for information, as well as for product. One thing I appreciate is that he thinks of little things we’d like to know about and sends them our way."