Axis and Genetec enhance casino security in California

Axis and Genetec enhance casino security in California

Mission
Opened in 2014, Stones Gambling Hall is a card house in Citrus Heights, California offering poker, blackjack, baccarat, Pai Gow and other card games. The casino prides itself on its commitment to customer experience and its saloon-style atmosphere. So when it was planning its video surveillance system, it needed an option that could blend with the design while still providing the highest degree of protection.

Solution
Stones hired Los Angeles, CA-based systems integrator and Axis partner CCS to design a system that would maintain the casino's aesthetics. CCS assigned Ryan Gleason as the Project Manager, and he was immediately tasked to working with the architect on systems selection and planning. Gleason and the design team selected Axis network cameras for the job, as the deep product portfolio would allow them flexibility with a variety of options for each part of the casino. CCS installed a range of cameras offering high definition resolution, discrete installation and options for remote maintenance and control. The system is managed through Genetec Security Center, the unified security platform which includes the Omnicast IP video management system (VMS), and runs on Dell PowerEdge servers.

Result
The Axis cameras provide critical support for the Stones security team. The high definition video provides full detail of card games and money-counting areas. Because the cameras can be adjusted remotely, the casino can quickly change views to monitor specific areas, such as a popular game. CCS was also able to integrate a custom application they developed to take snapshots with a touch of a button in order to help the casino streamline tax reporting on transactions over $10,000.

A wealth of options for security
A casino is an environment where the details matter: dealers and players trade palm-sized chips and cards during fast-moving, high stakes games. When the owners of Stones Gambling Hall began constructing their card house, they needed a responsive surveillance solution that could capture the action in high definition video. Furthermore, the casino distinguishes itself in the emphasis it places on customer experience. It is a non-smoking facility with a gourmet restaurant and is designed to evoke a frontier-era California saloon. As such, the owners wanted cameras that could blend in with the aesthetics and maintain the casino's trademark atmosphere. To accomplish this, Stones asked Los Angeles, CA based systems integrator and Axis partner CCS to get creative and build a robust, yet unobtrusive, system.

The breadth and flexibility of Axis' portfolio let Gleason's team use an assortment of models and mounting options. For example, the card tavern section has a 30-foot vaulted ceiling with exposed trusses. Originally, Gleason planned to install cameras at the top of the ceiling to keep them hidden and out of plain view. Because of the height, CCS originally selected a model with interchangeable lens options. However, due to the 24/7 environment, Gleason decided a camera with remote focus and zoom was ultimately the best choice. After testing, the CCS team found a way to mount the camera eight feet lower than originally planned. This allowed them to upgrade to an HDTV 1080p AXIS P3346-V Dome Network Camera despite the fact it had a narrower focal length. Because it was a lower height, they were able to capture the same area with greater resolution and avoid dropping the cameras from a truss using conduit.

AXIS P3384 Dome Network Cameras with Wide Dynamic Range-Dynamic Capture were used near the entrances and exits to balance out the contrast between indoor and outdoor lighting. CCS installed discrete AXIS P12 Series Network Cameras at facility choke points and certain high limit tables. Various customized mounting methods conceal the cameras, including inside the games' displays to provide a “dealer's eye view” of the table.

“One of the benefits of using Axis is that it offers a product portfolio with dozens of different types of cameras, attachments, mounting assemblies, etc.,” Gleason said. “We could choose the best model number to use in a particular instance given the aesthetics, the location and what we were trying to see.”

Fast adjustments for the perfect view
The cameras are monitored at all times through a Genetec Omnicast VMS, and the extra eyes provide critical support for security personnel on the card room floor. Using AXIS Q6045 pan/tilt/zoom PTZ Network Cameras, the IT team can quickly change views if one game draws a large crowd or an incident occurs somewhere in the facility. Furthermore, if the casino adds a new game, they can make remote adjustments to the focus and digital PTZ of existing cameras to ensure all views comply with local, state and federal regulations.

“I work closely with all the managers to get the views that they need on a daily basis to make sure that they can do their jobs,” said David Gray, IT manager, Stones Gambling Hall.

Easy, inventive regulatory compliance
The open nature of Axis and Genetec products let Gleason find unique solutions to help the casino comply with regulations while maintaining its commitment to customer experience. By law, every casino and gambling facility must provide the IRS with detailed information on all transactions over $10,000.00. Often, this is accomplished by having the customer fill out a form. However, CCS integrated a button-activated trigger into the I/O port of the AXIS P3364 Network Camera, which tells the camera to snap a series of photos and create an event in Genetec Security Center. Security personnel can then use the images to record the required information while minimizing inconvenience to the customer.

“Everything we do is based around customer service here, and it really reflects in our casino's integrity and our day-to-day operations,” Gray said. “As long as the customers are happy, we know that they'll come back.”

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