>In addition to its new LED lighting systems, James Thomas Engineering also had on stand a new Minitower ground support system. Designed to work with JTE's Superlite and Squarelite truss, its 2 mm wall thickness is strengthened with robust diagonal plates whilst the tower features the same, reliable fork connecting system as Squarelite and Superlite. The external dimensions are only 19cm, making it extremely expedient in size and ideal for trade shows, conferences and retail applications.
>The UK arm of Penton, the manufacturer of loudspeakers and microphones for the public address, background sound and voice evacuation markets, reports that 2003 has been a bumper year and that business continues to thrive - not something you hear every day in the current economic climate, but perhaps other aspects of today's climate are driving the demand for life safety and emergency systems installations.
>It's been a busy year for Adam Hall as it has taken on the UK distribution of SKB products. General sales manager Rob Fricker said demand for the cases and 19" racks has been high since selling began in April through a network of UK dealers.
>HK Audio's Cohedra is a so-called 'small' line array system, but with aspirations to large venues, having debuted at Hull stadium just days before PLASA. A mid/high and floor-only sub, the system uses a pair of 8" and a single 1.5" compression driver in each high pack, utilizing an acoustic lens to form the necessary coherent wave for the highs. To optimize the acoustic gap between the stacked enclosures, two different housings are required to produce the classic J-shaped hang and hence even coverage across a stadium.
>From Celco came the DMX512-A Buffer: a bi-directional communicator for the new protocol, it protects both sides against mains failure. Also new from Celco was the the MkII version of the DMX recorder, which can manage up to 32 linked DMX devices for install show playback - no batteries or external cards are required for holding programme data.
>Appointed as the UK distributor for the innovative XP10 MP3 audio pad from Finnish company EKS, Lightfactor launched the device that offers DJs the possibility of carrying all their playing equipment - including music - around in the average-sized briefcase! Also featured on the stand was SGM's growing Giotto 400 family of moving head fixtures and its Regia range of high-end lighting control consoles.
>PLASA was a great success for Allen & Heath, attracting interest in the eight new products launched across its portfolio of ML, GL, Xone, iDR and PA series, impressively displayed on a new two-tier stand. The company's 48-channel version of the ML3000 completed the ML series. The 'B option' enhancement allows for extra stereo channels to be added to any desk in the range. The existing iDR range of installation systems has been expanded with the iDR4 - a 4-input, 4-output digital processor - while for the DJ market the Xone:V6 club mixer now has two new modules giving cross-fade and an EQ Isolator option.
>California-based manufacturer Apogee Sound showed the AFI-8, a new addition to the company's Contractor series of loudspeakers. Designed with theatre and churches in mind, the passively crossed over AFI-8 is available with 60° x 40° or 90° x 40° horn, with a 15" providing the low end, a 2" exit (3" voice coil) compression driver providing the muscle. The AFI-8B is an active, bi-amp version of the above. Apogee also introduced the ADAM (or Apogee Digital Audio Management) system for full remote digital monitoring and configuration of powered, processor-based Apogee speaker systems. With the simple addition of DSP processing modules to existing Apogee APL speakers, the system allows for quick and inexpensive installation using either RS485 or Cat 5 cable. Users can digitally reconfigure their system using a simple drag-and-drop interface.
>Appearing at PLASA last year as Pearl River, the China based manufacturer has re-branded to PR Lighting, the initials standing for 'pure reliability'. Distributed by MilTec, two new products graced the stand this year - the Pilot 575 and the Pilot 1200. Small and neat, the 575 boasts two CMY wheels; seven interchangeable fixed gobos plus five rotating; blade shutters for smooth linear dimming, and many other features. The more powerful 1200 has all the above features and more, the 1200W HMI producing great output but little in the way of excessive heat from the lamp body. Expect a Wash model next year.
>The RT Series is a range of three 3-way speakers from Dare Pro Audio. The main actively crossed over mid/high pack uses a 15", 6.5" and a 1" compression driver. A remarkable Wafer version just 220mm deep exists for installation applications. Two sub bass units, both handling 700W, were also on stand - the Vortex218 is a twin 18", whilst the C1400 uses a single 15" into a cabinet designed for room corner installations. Dare also showed a range of attractive metallic and laminate coatings for any cabinet in its range.
>Jointly exhibiting at PLASA with Projected Image UK was Beacon AB. On display was the Beacon Gobo Catalogue with over 350 new gobo designs. The company now has Gobo Group members in 18 countries and uses its own patented gobo manufacturing process to create ultra-thin gobos. The recently launched Beacon Blackline range uses a special coating that eliminates ghost reflections in the projector.
>In the realms of larger pro moving lights, Amptown presented its new Washlight, with a 2kW tungsten lamp aimed squarely at the TV studio. (In actual fact, the Washlight is powered by an 82V lamp giving comparable output to 2kW at 240V from this shorter filament lamp). Complete with four-leaf barndoor, this Fresnel lamp sports motorized focus between 10° and 45°.
>Le Mark Group
GAF-Fire is a consumable product that has been designed and engineered to reflect the needs of an industry that has become fully aware of its responsibilities concerning safety and the environment.
GAF-Fire is the world's first ever matt black self-adhesive tape which is both self-extinguishing and flame retardant to the rigorous standards of BS5867 part 2 1980 type B. Designed for use in a range of situations, it provides the 'missing link' in the industry's flame retardant armoury. GAF-Fire can be used for many types of applications within the entertainment industry since it provides a non-burn surface for stage, film, TV and concert productions.
It also provides a discreet, yet safe, non-burn cover or surround for pyrotechnic applications; reinforces joins in fabrics or effects the temporary repair of drapes and seating; offers extra protection for clothing worn during explosive stunts; can be laminated directly to timber or stages to provide a slip-resistant non-burn surface; has no solvent retention in the manufacture, dramatically reducing 'adhesive migration' and providing a safe, clean closure for vinyl stage floors and will not burn or drip molten material from overhead in the case of fire. It is available in widths from 12mm up to 1000m from roll lengths of 25m.
Although self-extinguishing, it does this without adding halogens and uses a 'solvent-free' coating system. The fabric of the tape is 100% cotton and the adhesive system is based on natural rubber.
>Show Laser & Audiolight showed a new 150W diode laser mounted in a moving light head, the Matrix. Essentially, this is putting their existing scanning head technology into a simple 'plug and play', device with pre-programmed fixed effects. Off-line new effects and graphics such as logos can be programmed in using PC and ILDA files (Pangolin software, for example). The Matrix requires 11 channels of DMX to control all parameters of the moving head and the laser.
The PLASA Awards for Product Excellence were presented yesterday evening after the close of day three of the PLASA Show. With a record number of new technological innovations nominated this year, the judging panel had a tough challenge on their hands.
This year there were five awards categories and 79 nominations, generating £12,000 for PLASA'S nominated charities - Light Relief, PSA Welfare and Benevolent Fund and the Golden Lions Children's Trust. This system has been running for five years now and every penny of the entry fees is donated. To date this scheme has raised almost £45,000 for charitable causes.
The five product categories this year were Lighting, Sound, Stage Engineering, Software (a new category introduced this year), Audio-Visual, and finally an Award for the product with the most environmental considerations. The PLASA awards were presented by PLASA's Chairman, David Hopkins OBE, and were split into two categories, recognizing both Design Excellence and Technical Innovation.
So, to the winners . . .
Lighting: the winner of the Award for Design Excellence is Element Labs for their Versa Tile - the judges felt that this was a well thought out and engineered concept. The Award for Technical Innovation went to Powergems for their HF575P ballast - which was felt to be a well-engineered, no-nonsense approach to ballast technology.
Sound: the Award for Innovation went to Clearcom for its CellCom system. This was noted for being the first truly integrated wireless intercom system. The Award for Design Excellence went to AKG for their WMS
Sunday, 7 September, 10.00am and the 26th PLASA Show has opened its doors to crowds of visitors at London's Earls Court. The new-look PLASA Show, with its stunning central bar and networking area at its heart, offers a wealth of new product innovations from the leading manufacturers and suppliers of professional lighting, audio, staging, audio-visual, communications and display technology. The Show has once again proved its reputation as the international launchpad for new product innovations, with 79 new products nominated for the PLASA Awards for Product Excellence and many, many more new product launches everywhere on the show floor.
We'll be keeping visitors to this website up to date with some of the highlights from London over the next four days, including the announcement of the winners of this year's Awards for Product Excellence on Tuesday evening, and a complete review of the Show will appear in the October issue of PLASA Media's Lighting&Sound International magazine.
Singapore - Two events aimed at theatre lighting professionals are taking place at Esplanade - Theatres on the Bay, Singapore, this October. The first Asia Light 2003, a three-day theatre lighting seminar for lighting designers around Asia, will begin on 13 October 2003. The Esplanade Technical Theatre Specialists Programme, an initiative to develop the local theatre industry, also returns on 8 October with a series of theatre lighting workshops.
Professionals from the theatre lighting industry in Asia will now have a platform from which to share information and ideas on their craft, and foster closer networks with other lighting designers when Esplanade presents the first Asia Light 2003, a theatre lighting seminar, from 13 to 15 October.
The facilitator for Asia Light 2003 is Francis Reid, a theatre lighting specialist with over 40 years of experience and author of the indispensable guide to theatre lighting, The Stage Lighting Handbook. Reid is also an established teacher of lighting design. He was Head of Theatre Design at London's Central School of Art and Design (now known as Central St. Martin's), Dean of the Hong Kong Academy of Performing Arts and is now its Honorary Fellow and has also taught at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art.
Esplande's production manager, Kenny Wong says: "We are thrilled to have Francis Reid to be the facilitator for this seminar. It is a real honour for us to welcome Mr Reid, who is a pioneer in the field and one of the best-known theatre lighting person today. The participants can look forward to gain first-hand knowledge
UK - Martin Professional comes to this year's PLASA exhibition with the Magnum and Jem brand smoke machines encompassing everything from compact DJ foggers to heavy fog generators. Magnum is a range of high quality, high value fog effect generators for today's DJ and late night venue operator while Jem is a professional range of high quality haze, smoke and heavy fog machines designed for the stage, studio and event markets. Both ranges offer users the latest in high quality fog generation.
Martin Magnum 550 is a portable yet powerful smoke machine providing the DJ with a light-enhancing atmosphere. It houses a 600W ECO-Mass Vaporizing System for economical and even distribution of haze. It has a fast heat-up time and extended operation and comes supplied with remote control and a high quality overheat protection.
The Magnum 2000 delivers high smoke output, advanced microprocessor-based technology, variable smoke and pressure control, overheat protection, large on-board fluid capacity, DMX interface, remote controllability and overall reliability.
Martin Magnum Hazer uses state-of-the-art digital technology and a high velocity centrifugal blower to produce very small, highly refractive airborne particles - providing an optically translucent canvas of haze. Based on proven Jem technology and built from rugged components, the Magnum Hazer is designed for years of reliable service. It offers a variety of control options - built-in DMX or on-board control with timer function and output control.
The Jem ZR 24/7 is rugged in construction and features digital tech
UK - Lightfactor Sales launches its distributorship of EKS' revolutionary XP10 audio pad at PLASA 2003. The XP10 is one of the first real 'plug and play' system for playing digital audio streams - making it a reality for DJs to carry all their playing equipment - including music - around in the average sized briefcase.
When connected to a PC, the XP10 provides direct control over file playback and has the ability to 'scratch' the digital audio stream via its 4.5" touch-sensitive vinyl emulation wheel. Just like vinyl and the very latest CD players, tracks can be stopped with the fingers and the wheel can be used for cueing.
The XP10's device controller is near-pocket sized and weights under 400g, but boasts features found in larger, heavier DJ equipment. Audio quality is 'hi-fi' in texture, with a signal-to-noise ratio of 105 dB or more, say EKS.
XP10 connects to a PC via the USB port, and as it's connected via the bus, needs no external power supply. Audio outputs (RCA) are next to the USB connector and the PC needs no additional hardware. XP10 is designed to work with EKS' Bison software, but can be adapted to work with supported third party software products through future MIDI compatibility and software development. Software can be downloaded free of charge for evaluation from the EKS website.
Lightfactor can be found on Stand G40 at PLASA.
UK - This year's PLASA show at Earls Court will see the introduction of a number of new and improved products from Strand Lighting - including additions to the company's dimmer range, a new tool for lighting designers and updates to its operating software.
The LD24 is a new version of the company's popular LD90 family of dimmers: its new design is aimed at cost-conscious facilities that need basic DMX control combined with a high quality digital dimmer. Strand's new SLD Sinewave dimmer will also be presented for the first time and on stand will be a working demonstration unit with a range of loads that will allow users to see the features of the new dimmer first-hand. These include true sinewave output for quiet lamps and accurate control; SST dimmer modules which can dim a wide range of loads including incandescent, inductive and capacitive devices from a fraction of a watt to full capacity; built-in micro-controller based short circuit and overload protection; SLD status reporting and advanced waveform compensation as standard; Single Pole, Double Pole and RCD circuit breakers; SST Solid State Transformer dimmers which produce less than 1% harmonic distortion.
A new USB Key drive with built-in Designer Remote software will also be introduced. Lighting designers can plug the new drive into the USB port on a PC or Mac notebook with a wired or wireless Ethernet connection and within minutes will be able to access displays and controls on any Strand 300 or 500 series console. This new low-cost product will provide designers with a better and more convenient way to
UK - PLASA is emphasizing the importance of training development via the PLASA Professional Development Programme (PDP).The format for this year's education programme at the PLASA Show has changed to offer a wider choice with sessions ranging from technical workshops for technicians through to business seminars for freelancers and company start-ups.
The industry seminars have been expanded to cover a wide range of topics on current debates including 'Theatrical Fog - Knowing when Enough is Enough' and 'White Lighting versus Colour in Architectural Application'. Conversely the masterclasses will provide a forum for industry experts to share their knowledge. Speakers will include Brough Skingley from English Heritage on 'Lighting Up The Past - the Conflict Between Historical Accuracy and Modern Technology' and Bruce Jackson of Lake Technology on 'Sydney Olympics' Audio Design.'
If you book for any seminar before Saturday 6 September, the show is offering all PLASA members a special advance booking price of £6 off the normal seminar price (excluding the WYSIWYG sessions). Log onto the website below for more information, or call Marisa Beckman on +44 (0)20 7351 7147 to book, quoting PLASA web pages.
UK - Adlib Audio supplied sound systems for all five stages at Liverpool's famous Mathew Street Festival, now the UK's largest free annual outdoor music festival and celebrating its 10th anniversary this year. 300,000 people crowded into Liverpool city centre for the August Bank Holiday Monday.
The festival also merged with the conclusion of the week-long International Beatles Convention, which saw presentations, talks, seminars and markets dedicated to every possible aspect of Liverpool's best known export. Adlib were also responsible for servicing all the sound needs of the Adelphi Hotel, the Royal Court Theatre and the Barcelona Club where hundreds of the Best of Beatles bands from all over the world performed. Adlib employed over 40 crew, working around-the-clock in shifts at the various sites used by the two events.
Run by Liverpool City Council's Cultural Events Department in partnership with Cavern City Tours, the Mathew Street Festival started modestly with one stage at Chevasse Park on the Friday, and built through the Saturday to Monday, when four more major stages appeared at Water, Dale, Castle and Victoria Streets. Monday saw over 50 local bands perform including Elevation the U2 Experience, Rocks Off and the Stereotonics.
At Chevasse Park, Adlib supplied a JBL VerTec system, stacked to ensure even coverage whilst still containing the sound within the given area. Monitors were Adlib AP15s, and the consoles were; a Soundcraft Series 5, run by Dave Kay and Graham Smith FOH and a Midas XL3 onstage run by Kenny Perrin on monitors. Two of the city cent
UK - Rola-Trac laid 15,200sq.m of ground protection - the largest single system the company has ever laid in the UK - for Massive Attack's 'home town' concert in Bristol's Queen's Square. To mark the 100th date of their current world tour, Massive Attack returned to their home city of Bristol on Bank Holiday Monday, to play to a sell out crowd of 19,000 people in Queen's Square.
Promoters Metropolis Music brought in Nine Yards to manage the production located in one of Bristol's best-known landmarks. The site was obviously not designed for hosting concerts, so the production team liased with Bristol City Council and had to be especially considerate of their environment. Hence it was decided to cover the whole area with Rola-Trac to achieve effective protection.
Guy Wightham, Rola-Trac's project manager, had to plan and execute installation of the system. Site visits two weeks ahead and immediately prior to the production build, ensured that it could be installed within the tight schedule. Wightham explained: "Queens Square was relatively inaccessible and left us a small area to work within. I carefully scheduled our build around the rest of the production as the two days allowed for installation and extraction left very little leeway."
Guy managed a crew of 20 and it took around 400 man-hours to complete the task, starting from Thursday morning with 6 artic lorries of flooring being delivered. The topography of the square presented various challenges, with obstacles including architectural lights, benches, raised manhole covers and trees to work aroun
UK - The PLASA exhibition has traditionally been the launching pad for the latest in innovative lighting products from Martin Professional and this year's show will be no exception. Martin heads to Earl's Court with an array of new products including three new MAC luminaires, new club effects, and the first light in Martin's new Mania series of DJ products. Also on hand will be Version 1.0 of the new Maxxyz controller and other new control products.
New luminaires include the MAC 550, fully loaded with features to redefine standards for a mid-range, 400W moving head. The 550 features; multiple graphical options including a gobo animation system, two eight-slot colour wheels, motorized 14-30° zoom and a multitude of other features all wrapped within the award-winning design of the MAC 2000. Also on show will be the Entour, Martin's 250W automated profile spot. This unit includes a number of important advancements including a superior optical system and new achromatic lens system, all new gobo designs, an additional gobo wheel and a specially designed dimming system. The fixture is ideal for stage, studio and event applications.
Another new version of the MAC 250 Profile is the Krypton, featuring a number of significant changes including a new glass reflector for brighter output and improved image quality, new gobo patterns and improved movement. Suitable uses would be in the club and installation market, retail, leisure applications and special events.
Control systems include the Maxxyz Version 1.0, which is already specified for a number of touring, TV and spe