Scoreboards

Aerial's 'boards will add interest and keep your audiences informed.  For example, gymnasts can be introduced prior to her/his event. Start values can be flashed. High scores can trigger a short fireworks or cherry bomb graphic. You can also display a concessions menu, make announcements, do warm-up timing and more.
 
Scoreboards are connected to the Event Station laptops, one scoreboard per event.  Scoreboards can be individually located near the judges' table (i.e., replacing the old hand flashers), or all can be located together in a central area.
 
Boards are connected with a signal cable to the computer's serial port.  Most laptops no longer have serial ports, and require "USB-to-Serial" adaptors, which are easily obtained at most electronics stores.  There are two type of adaptors: The "RS232" which allows a maximum cable length of 50', and the "RS485" with a maximum cable length of 4000'. 
 
The best RS485 adaptor is the EasySync ES-U-2001. Find them at  http://www.easysync-ltd.com/category/119/rs422-rs485.html .  EasySync has a US office at:7235 NW Evergreen Pkwy, Ste 600, Hillsboro, OR 97124 PH 503-547-0909.

Obtaining Scoreboards

 Aerial uses high-quality displays from Adaptive Microsystems.  These are the best and brightest you can buy.  You can purchase displays from a local signboard distributor, or find them on eBay, or visit Tek Solutions (offices in Maryland, Wisconsin and Oregon). Displays can be rented from Tek Solutions.
 
There are a number of different shapes and sizes.
 
 Beta Brite 
Dimensions: 28.9" x 4.5". Visible to 100'. Two-inch letters, 15 characters wide; scrollable, multi-color, multi-size character set. Numerous display modes.  NOTE: If you purchase a Beta Brite, be sure it uses a "serial port" and is not a USB-only display.
 
Alpha 220
Dimensions: 37.9" x 3.8". Visible to 100'. Two-inch letters, 20 characters wide; scrollable, multi-color, multi-size character set. Numerous display modes.
 
Alpha 320
Dimensions: 57.9" x 5.5". Visible to 150'. Three-inch letters, 20 characters wide; scrollable, multi-color, multi-size character set. Numerous display modes.
 
Big Dot 
Dimensions: 49" x 6.25". Visible to 200'. Four-inch letters, 16 characters wide; scrollable, multi-color, multi-size character set. Numerous display modes. Obtaining Displays Sam's Club has the best price around for Beta Brite and, if available, Big Dot displays. When we last checked, the Beta Brite was $167 and the Big Dot was $523. (June 2006)
 
Window Display
 
The same size as the Big Dot, but much brighter that other boards, having oversized LED's.  It it available only in red.  Audiences generally perfer this display, as it is highly visible.   (Text is simulated)
 
 Alpha 4120
 
Size 40.2 x 7.7
 
Alpha 4160
 
Size 52.2 x 7.7  The Alpha 4120 and Alpha 4160 are fairly common on eBay.