Founded in 2015 by former Microsoft engineer Jason Asthon, Mad Moose Media is a sports and event photography company dedicated to quality, efficiency and “capturing the moment.” Mad Moose serves clients across the U.S. and has photographed everything from traditional youth sports programs to dirt bike racing to yacht tournaments. Drawing upon his skills as a professional photographer and graphic designer, Ashton runs the business with his extended family.
While working as a Microsoft engineer, Ashton decided to keep his competitive spark alive by working part-time at an event photography company. Despite his enthusiasm, Ashton was frustrated by the lack of professionalism he encountered. “I was not impressed by the way they went about things and I was constantly giving them ideas,” said Ashton. “They never listened, so my wife and I decided to do it ourselves.” At the time, he said, there was no major software solution for the event photography space, so they developed their own. Along with their software (which was faster and more efficient than anything else on the market), they needed monitors that could be used for up to 20 hours a day in environments that were often dirty, dusty and wet. These monitors would also need to withstand the constant bumping and jostling that came with constant transportation to and from events – initially throughout the Southwest, then across the country as Mad Moose Media expanded.
In the early days of Mad Moose, said Ashton, everything was about the bottom line. Their Mad Moose POS, Sort and Photo Grab software was developed entirely in-house. Cost, rather than function, was the priority when it came to purchasing monitors. “The first monitors we had were what we could get easily and inexpensively from Best Buy. As it turned out, some were from ViewSonic and others weren’t,” he said. During that first year, Mad Moose Media went to any event they could find near their home base of Nevada and Southern California. At a mountain bike race in Orange County, Ashton met someone who would change his life. A Mad Moose customer noticed the ViewSonic monitors then brought his friend by to meet the Mad Moose crew. That friend turned out to be President of ViewSonic Americas, Jeff Volpe. “He and I ended up having a lot of common interests,” said Ashton, “We had a great time talking, and of course he commented on how ViewSonic monitors could do a better job for us. I was thrilled to take his advice and try out the monitors he recommended as best for our different needs.” With a range of vehicles, trailers and tents that traveled to events, Mad Moose Media needed a wide range of monitors to meet their needs. The final solution consisted of:
ViewSonic® TD2730 Multi-Touch Displays
The 10 TD2730 multi-touch displays being used for customer point-of-sale were the most critical component of the business, said Ashton, as they served the interface where customers could see, customize and order photos. Using the VESA compatible mounts on the displays, Ashton connected standard folding wall mounts, flipped them 180-degrees and attached them to a table instead of a wall, creating a fast and easy set-up process.
ViewSonic VA2256-mhd Displays
10 displays are used by the sales team from inside the tent or trailer, mirroring what the customer sees on the outside.
This giant display, said Ashton, is ideal for circumstances that bring Mad Moose inside to showcase and sell their photography. Mounted on the ViewSonic LB-STND-003-S mobile stand, the 75” ViewBoard interactive display is quite literally a standout in conference rooms, convention centers and high-end award ceremonies.
ViewSonic PX701-4K Ultra HD Projectors
Two 4K projectors amp up the excitement during events by displaying content onto the ceiling of the tent. With nighttime images that reach up to 20 feet, Aston’s team can livestream races, showcase results and present highlights.
ViewSonic VP3881 38” ColorPro™ Monitor
This powerful color-accurate display is used for image editing in Ashton’s home office to produce pixel-perfect pictures every time.
ViewSonic VX4380-4K 43” Ultra HD Monitor
The Mad Moose team uses this 4K monitor for poster development and general in-office use.
Running a business is hard work. That’s why for Ashton, a gaming monitor was critical for self-care.
Equipped with the right technology for each job and driven by a passion for excellence, Mad Moose Media has grown exponentially over the past five years. Some of the credit goes to the durability and performance of the ViewSonic displays, said Ashton. “For one thing, without the touchscreen POS monitors we couldn’t do anything,” he said. “And these ViewSonic multi-touch models do everything we need. The images are great and the high nit count for brightness is very important because we’re outside. Even with the awning providing shade it’s still very bright.” Not only do the ViewSonic TD2730 touch displays deliver everything needed for point-of-sale customer interaction, they do so again and again, without fail, at nearly 100 events per year. “The durability of these monitors is mind-blowing,” said Ashton. “We’ve never had a failure in the field and we put them to work in the worst dust you can imagine. They’ve been through rain multiple times plus snow, 20-degree weather, 100-degree weather, you name it. They’ve had thousands of customers pushing on them and they’ve been driven across the country dozens of times.” This, he said, is beyond critical for the company’s five concessions: A tent with five ViewSonic TD2730 touchscreen displays; two vending trailers, each with four to six TD2730 displays; a golf cart with two TD2730 displays; and the indoor concession: a 75” ViewSonic ViewBoard IFP7550 interactive display. “We rely completely on our ViewSonic monitors. We can’t have low-quality monitors that break during an event,” said Ashton. “That would cost us thousands of dollars in a day.”
From small to large, outdoor to indoor, ViewSonic displays do not disappoint, said Ashton, who is particularly fond of the 75” ViewBoard interactive display. “It’s huge and vibrant and always catches peoples’ attention with its beautiful, massive screen,” he said. “We just push it into the meeting room or convention hall, put it in the corner, and people continually walk up and interact with it.” While most of the company’s business - from order placement to the final printed product placed in the customers’ hands - is conducted and completed onsite, Mad Moose Media also specializes in creating customized posters produced off-site.
“We take a lot of pride in our posters,” said Ashton. “We know they can stay up on walls for a long time and we work hard to make sure they’re perfect.” This is where the ViewSonic VP3881 Ultrawide ColorPro™ monitor shines, enabling Ashton and his team to edit, color-correct and personalize photos taken in the toughest of conditions. “None of our photographers get it easy. They have to work with odd lighting, dust and water reflections; we don’t get to set up a photoshoot,” Ashton said. “This is where the editing, color coding and color grading that we do on this monitor is critical. For example, an image may be a bit hazy due to dust but also the best image from the event. The functionality of the ViewSonic VP3881 enables us to edit out the haze and get the colors perfect, said Ashton, adding that this is another important cost-saver for the company. “When we generate the poster on our giant printer, we know that what we see on the monitor screen will be what we see on the final result. This is critical because we print thousands of posters per year. If it doesn’t look exactly right onscreen compared to what we print, we’d waste a lot of time and expensive paper.” The Mad Moose headquarters is also home to a ViewSonic VX4380-4K Ultra HD monitor, which supports basic business functions as well as some poster design. “To be honest, I just love this monitor, it’s so easy to read everything on it,” said Ashton. “It’s my general office workstation so I use it daily for emails, PowerPoint, Excel, that sort of thing. The 4K is a whole different feel and I notice way less eye strain.”
Beyond the ViewSonic monitors that support his business, Ashton has one more that’s near and dear to his heart: the ViewSonic XG350R-C 35” Ultrawide ELITE gaming monitor. Designed to deliver an immersive experience for esports and gaming enthusiasts, this elegant, curved display includes ViewSonic exclusive RGB ELITE lighting technology, a 100Hz refresh rate and ClearMotion™ technology to reduce blur.
“I grew up racing and I’m a racer at heart. These days I do a lot of iRacing and sim racing online for fun,” Ashton said. “I’m at races and competitions every weekend, running the Mad Moose show, but when I want to race myself, I can do it anytime online with other people from around the world.”
What started as a pastime became something bigger when the COVID pandemic put a stop to many live events in early 2020. Because of his background, Ashton has become what he calls “tech support” for 20 or so NASCAR drivers, advising them on everything from the software to the workstation setup. And he always recommends the ViewSonic XG350R-C 35” Ultrawide ELITE gaming monitor.
“I tell them that this incredible 35” curved ViewSonic gaming monitor is absolutely what they need. It’s pretty much perfect for sim racing,” he said. “You need the ultrawide because you need to be able to easily see who’s to your left and right, and it gives you a tremendous field of view. It’s an amazing monitor and for the price point it’s even more amazing.”
With a thriving and expanding business, Mad Moose Media captures thousands of athletes and racers in the heat of the action. As soon as those shots are captured, ViewSonic monitors play a vital role in getting those images into the hands of athletes and their fans. “These monitors – and the projectors – all do what they’re supposed to do, with outstanding quality and without fail,” said Ashton, summing up his experience with the many ViewSonic products he uses daily. “I think one of the most incredible things is their reliability. We’ve put them through the worst environments they could be through. I’m often shocked that they still work.” Despite the damp, dust and grime spanning five-plus years, none of the ViewSonic monitors have ever been dismantled or professionally cleaned. “We just blow them off and wipe the screens, simple things,” said Ashton. “I joke that we put these monitors through more durability testing than when they’re manufactured. With us they go through hell and back – and keep working.”