From opposite corners of the globe, two well-known companies have joined together to meet the growing needs of the entertainment industry. GE Lighting, headquartered in Cleveland, Ohio and Koto Electric Co Ltd, based in Tokyo, Japan, will collaborate to distribute and develop new products in entertainment metal halide discharge lamps. Under the terms of the agreement, GE will distribute metal halide discharge lamps manufactured by Koto Electric. The lamps - built to GE Lighting’s specifications and branded with the GE name - will be distributed by GE Lighting worldwide, except in Japan and the People’s Republic of China. In addition, both companies have committed to expand their discharge product offerings in the future. "We are constantly looking for ways to improve not only our distribution capabilities, but also our commitment to our customers," said Gerry Schuh, product manager for GE Lighting. "Our collaboration with Koto Electric will provide new outlets to sell and service GE Lighting and Koto Electric customers, and allow us to expand our presence in the entertainment lighting industry."
L-Acoustics and CATT-Acoustic have been working in close collaboration to develop a DLL Directivity Interface (DDI) for modelling V-DOSC and dV-DOSC. This WST DDI allows for directivity modeling of L-Acoustics’ Wavefront Sculpture Technology (WST-based) line source arrays and represents a significant advancement in addressing the needs of acoustic consultants and sound designers. Generally, acoustical prediction software programs describe the directivity of a sound reinforcement system with a balloon representing the magnitude of the sound pressure as a function of site and azimuth radiation angles. This type of balloon works for a single source, but is not sufficient to simulate the behaviour of large line source arrays that have both an extended near-field and distance-dependent directivity. Developed using proprietary theoretical modeling, the WST DDI allows the user to make accurate SPL predictions of L-Acoustics’ WST-based line source arrays in either a venue (including the effects of room acoustics) or in open air situations. CATT-Acoustic also allows for SPL mapping, calculation of room acoustics parameters (such as STI) and auralization in order to evaluate system performance prior to actual installation. L-Acoustics is currently working with EASE to develop the same type of modelling capability for this industry-standard program in order to make modeling of WST-based line source arrays even more accessible.
Philips Lighting’s investment in new technology promises users of halogen lamps a better lighting product for entertainment application. The lamps now incorporate a new technology called P3, which involves coating the pinch leads with a protective coating which results in greater reliability, by reducing early lamp failure caused by overheating. In addition it allows for more freedom and flexibility of the lamp burning position. All lamps with this new technology are now clearly identified with a distinctive P3 logo. To mark its launch, new packaging has also been designed and rebranded ‘Broadway’.
Stagetec held a product day at the Centre in Slough earlier this month. Primary focus was on the Compulite and LSC product ranges, with several new products previewed by both companies. Compulite showed the new CompuDIM 2000 touring version of their high-specification modular digital dimming system. This compact 24 x 2.5kW or 12 x 5kW system includes many advanced features including two DMX and Ethernet inputs, full status reporting both on the built in LCD screen and back to any Compulite desk, RCD protection per module and option of hard wire bypass switches for powering moving lights. New software was previewed for the 4D range with many new features geared to the architectural control market, including an event Scheduler and facility to operate the consoles from macro panels. These new features have already been utilised for lighting control at the BBC Concert Hall in Maida Vale and St Johns Beacon in Liverpool.
LSC previewed the new maXim control desk, due to be launched later this year. This is a powerful, easy to use range of control desks which combine the right mix of functions, large memory capacity, reliability and elegant design. The maXim is destined to lead the industry as the choice of control desk for theatre, events, touring shows and rental companies. A wide range of products was also on show from other suppliers including the Martin MAC2000, High End Studio Beam, Coemar CF7, TMB 575W MSR Source 4 PAR and the new Compucall telephone to DMX interface. Representatives were on hand from both Compulite and LSC to discuss the new products and any other requir
A company based in the Channel Islands has announced the launch of a product which it claims will "change forever the way sound systems will be built and used." The Linearizer total sound optimiser, from Linearizer Inc, is the result of 15 years of scientific research. Its capabilities include total feedback elimination at all sound levels, live background noise elimination, reduced power amplification requirements, acoustical taming of the most difficult halls, elimination of the need for equalizers and many other commonly-used signal processors, elimination of stage monitoring troubles, simplification of microphone placement, true real-time operation - no delays, notches, or phase shifting, true high-fidelity sound at all times and plug-and play ease of use. Furthermore, the company claims there is no frequency or spectrum shifting, no time shifting, no phase looping, no digital or analogue compression, no digital signal processing, no signal insertion or rejection, no delay and no frequency band splitting. Sounds too good to be true? Find out more at the following web address . . .
Christie Digital Systems has announced the first in a series of new ‘Vivid’ projectors, designed for conference rooms, boardrooms, churches, training rooms and other applications. The Vivid line of multimedia projectors complements the existing high-performance three-chip DLP products - the Vista Series. The first projector available in the series is the Vivid Green - producing up to 3600 ANSI lumens, true XGA resolution with the latest in high aperture LCD technology and optical design, all in a 17.2lb (7.8kg) package - a ratio of 210 lumens per pound of weight. Vivid Green can be used in high ambient light conditions, and is aimed at applications in larger rooms. The projector employs the 250W NSH lamp from Ushio (the parent company of Christie Digital Systems), with a typical lamp life of 1500 hours.
The ML5000, Allen & Heath's flagship live sound VCA console, has been to the dark side of the moon and back. An ML5000, owned by Yorkshire Audio, recently went on tour with Australian Pink Floyd and proved itself to be more than equal to the demands of large scale live performance. The console was designed to compete with much larger desks on a more cost-effective basis, without compromising on quality or function. Indeed, many features are sophisticated enough to be associated with more expensive consoles. These include eight assigned VCA groups as an alternative to using the audio subgroups - each with an AFP/PFL button; full three-speaker balance through the LCRPlus panning system; 128 mute/VCA snapshot memories and a group routing which allows the desk to transform into a spacious eight-group, 16-aux configuration.
It is this kind of flexibility of architecture, combined with a compact size and clean lines, that makes the ML5000 ideal for the touring market. Sound engineer Kevin Charnley, who took the ML5000 on tour, said: "I became quite used to the GL4, but this is a big step up. I can really hear the difference in the dynamics and sound separation. The EQ section is better and the ground structure is just right."
Designed as a cost-effective solution specifically for sound contractors, the new ISA Series from QSC Audio features six models, including three low impedance models (ISA 280, ISA 450, ISA 750) rated for 2-ohm operation, and three ‘T’ versions with 25, 70 and 100 volt outputs for distributed audio systems (ISA 300T, ISA 500T, ISA 800T). Versatile loading options and a comprehensive feature set make the ISA Series a suitable power solution for a wide range of permanently installed sound systems. The ‘T’ versions will drive 8- or 4-ohm loads and a distributed system on the same channel simultaneously. This enables a contractor to reduce the number of required amplifier channels by allowing a limited number of distributed speakers to be attached to the same amp as is powering the main sound system.
Housed in rugged 3U chassis, all six models feature rear panel gain controls for tamper resistant operation with 2dB detents for quick and repeatable settings. Inputs include both XLR and detachable Euro-style connectors. Outputs feature covered barrier strip connectors for safety agency compliance, and for added versatility, a DataPort V2 (Version 2) terminated with an HD-15 connector is provided for use with DPV2-compatible signal processing accessories such as the XC-3 Crossover, SF-3 Subwoofer Filter, and the LF-3 Low Frequency Filter. Selectable high-pass filters are included to protect speakers and prevent speaker transformer saturation with minimal effect on program material. The ISA Series provide additional protection circuitry including DC, infras
Wembley Loudspeaker has launched a new 15 - 400 Pro Cabinet to coincide with this year’s Frankfurt Music Exhibition. These two-way speaker enclosures have been developed for the professional audio user, and are suitable for mobile applications or installations, as parts of larger sound systems or as stand-alone units. The cabinets are rated at 400W RMS continuous and their performance has hugely impressed listeners, surpassing the output and quality of many more expensive makes. The 15 - 400 Pro contains a PTP 15-190 15" driver and a TP 300 flare, along with a proprietary European compression driver and adjustable crossover, with all the necessary protection built in. The cabinet is rigidly constructed covered in black carpet as standard and weighing in a 30kg they are easily portable. Fittings include protecting corners, top hats, metal grab handles and a full metal grill. Connection is via twin speakons.
Wembley Loudspeaker MD Paul MacCallum has built a reputation for producing high performance audio products, and he is delighted with the new enclosure: "We have looked at the design and components very carefully and tested various connotations to create the optimum performance for this niche of loudspeaker cabinet," said MacCallum.
Level Control Systems (LCS) has showcased the newest component of their dynamic mixing/processing platform - CueConsole. In the past, sound designs for live productions used a standard large format console as the front end - with group outputs feeding the LCS system for matrixing and cue control. Technically, all of it could be done in LCS - just not with real faders and knobs. CueConsole is LCS's proprietary control interface that allows the LCS system to replace the traditional front-of-house mixer. CueConsole's new approach to digital control surfaces is its uniquely adaptable modularity. Four types of control modules interface with the core of the system: the SuperNova audio engine or the new Matrix3 audio engine. The modules are flexible in that they can be configured in whatever way is most convenient for the sound designer/engineer. Because CueConsole is just a control surface without any audio passing through, the interface back to the audio engine is standard network interface cable. As a result, the modules can be set up in the conventional front-of-house position or different modules can be located in different locations. In addition, the modules can be in use at the same time, ultimately optimizing rehearsal time. If sound quality needs to be improved in the balcony, one can move an editor module to the balcony and solve the problem there. If close communication between the director and sound designer is a priority, the rehearsal mix position can be set up right next to the director and the lighting programmer. There is no down time waiting for someone to comple
Reacting on input from industry lighting designers and architectural lighting specialists, Martin has incorporated a 150W source into its new, smaller exterior housing. The Exterior 200 is a conveniently compact and powerful 150W, short-throw, CMY colour-changer in the same design of weatherproof (IP65-rated) aluminium housing as the award-winning Exterior 300. Its asymmetrical wide-throw flood beam makes it suitable for applications where projection distance is limited. Extremely versatile and housing a long life 6000-hour lamp, the Exterior 200 can be tucked discreetly into architectural design details of buildings or other structures. A built-in light sensor, memory presets and DMX controllability add to its independent functionality.
X-Line the brand new line array system from Electro-Voice made its UK debut with Richard Ashcroft at the Brixton Academy recently. Robbie McGrath was engineered the nine-piece band on his console of choice a Midas XL4, accompanied by his custom-built front-of-house and effects racks courtesy of ML Executives. The system comprised a J-hang of five XVLS and three XVLT cabinets at a trim height of 25ft, plus five ground-stacked sub units per side. Infills for close audience coverage were provided by EV X-Array Xi-1152 cabinets, and the whole system was driven by EV P3000 amps. Processing was handled by three Klark Teknik DN9848s, while mic splitting was dealt with by five DN1248s.
This was the first time Robbie McGrath had used the new system. He commented: " . . . as with every first show, there were a couple of adjustments to make before it really started to purr the way I knew it would. But the beauty of these systems is the learning curve is so fast . . . For the second night we made a few adjustments to the angle of some of the speakers, ran the house EQ virtually flat and approached the desk EQ from more of a ‘studio’ aspect, and immediately started hearing dimensions with the reverbs that hadn’t been apparent before."
In conclusion, Robbie said: "I have no hesitation in saying that I think the X-Line will be in the top three contenders in the world for at least the next decade. It brings so much to the table that is lacking in other rigs. . . But above all, it’s a truly musical system."
Macclesfield-based Federal Signal, the leading supplier of public address and voice alarm systems, has won a £30,000 contract to provide an emergency alert system at the new offices of the UK Passport Agency in London. The contract has been won in conjunction with Hull-based systems integrator Galloway Electronics, which was recommended to Federal by Millbank master distributor RW Salt. The system will be based on Federal’s new multi-zone alert system, VeriFire, and will enable the Passport Office staff to quickly and safely coordinate the evacuation of the building from two incident rooms, situated on the first and fifth floors. VeriFire was specififed because of its diagnostic and fault-finding capabilities - a pre-requisite of the contract. The systems also features a digital messaging unit for office-wide public address announcements, and single- and multi-zone paging capability.
XFL, the new spring football league from the creators of the WWF (World Wrestling Federation) celebrated a successful launch on February 3rd that saw a Lighthouse Technologies LVP502 LED SuperScreen begin a unique tour of US stadiums. XFL, a combination of Football and live entertainment, is co-owned by broadcaster NBC and the WWF in a joint venture. For the benefit of watching fans, video screen specialists Screenworks were hired to supply giant LED video screens for the ten-week season, with one game a week, followed by two weekends of play-off games. The screen measures 25 feet high by 50 feet wide, using a total of 96 modules - the largest LED video screen ever to be toured in the United States. This creates an aspect ratio of 2:1, reflecting the WWF’s standard wrestling broadcast format, and the screen is colour corrected for television, with the signal source provided by NBC. A Screenworks crew tours with the screen, rigging it from a staging structure at each venue using chain motors. Screenworks, a division of Live Media Group, has been in the daylight video screen business for 12 years, and this recent purchase of Lighthouse LVP502 modules makes it the largest owner of 20mm screen modules in the US.
Show Presentation Services (SPS), the audio-visual equipment rental and technical staging specialist, is to install a Barco ‘DLite-7’ LED Daylight Display in the heart of London’s Oxford Street. The venture comes hot on the heels of a further major investment by SPS in 30sq.m of leading LED manufacturer Barco’s DLite-7 daylight display. The venture also heralds the first of a number of scheduled outdoor advertising pilot sites between SPS and London-based Trash Media Plc, the ambient media and outdoor advertising specialist, with whom SPS have formed a strategic alliance. The site, re-booked for a further 12 months, is located at the Cromwell Road/North End Road junction, on the main commuter route into London, and is live 24 hours a day.
Spectators at the recent Norwich Union Indoor Trials/AAA Championships and Grand Prix athletics meetings at Birmingham’s National Indoor Arena were treated to a unique spectacle. Held three weeks apart, the infrastructure for both events was rigged with Unitek’s latest and lightest high-impact LED Megascreen, offering 17mm pixel pitch resolution, designed for indoor and outdoor use. The 6 x 5 (6.7m x 4.2m) modular screen took a feed from six BBC cameras via the mixer in the OB truck, and the magnified action shots not only brought track and field into sharp focus, but formed a vital part of the BBC’s transmission.
Crestron’s Isys touch panel control system is breaking new ground in converging audio-visual and information technologies, thanks to its ability to operate any number of devices, and link to multiple control systems around the world via the internet. Building on this platform, Crestron has now introduced the TPS-4500 Advanced Touchpanel Control system. The TPS-4500 offers a 12" diagonal touch-sensitive active matrix SVGA display (800 x 600 pixels) with an ergonomic Soft-Touch adjustable screen tilt (30°-80°) design. Colour control graphics, including 2D and 3D icons, photos and animations, are easy to read, even at extreme viewing angles. In common with other Isys products, users can upgrade its capabilities simply by installing optional expansion cards. For example, by installing the optional TPS-VID expansion card, the TPS-4500 can display full-motion NTSC or PAL video on the touchpanel with 256,000 colours.
Bose has been appointed an approved supplier of sound systems to Le Meridien Hotels and Resorts following a two-day Techno Forum in Dubai. The Forum was part of a company conference for Le Meridien’s general managers and aimed at introducing the latest technologies to the Group. Bose were among nine companies invited to make a presentation, and as a result, the company’s Wave Radio/CDs and Acoustic Wave Music Systems are now both featured on Le Meridien’s approved product list.
Z-Systems has appointed HHB as exclusive UK distributor of its full range of professional audio products. In recent years, Z-Systems has established an enviable reputation for its ‘Detangler’ digital audio patchbays which it manufactures, alongside a comprehensive range of sample rate convertors and multi-channel mastering processors.
Rosco has added 24 new colours to its redesigned e-colour+ range, which has been considerably enhanced with a new design swatchbook, colour guide and poster. The swatchbook includes full SED curves, transmission values, and cross references to filters in other Rosco ranges.
City Theatrical, which won praise last year for its AutoYoke system, has released a number of new products. These include the AutoYoke for PARnel - an automated variable beam spread washlight for use with ETC’s Source Four PARnel. Users can control the width of the beam and drive colour scrollers using remote DMX. A second new product, the Event PAR, is aimed squarely at the trade show market. A 575W MSD or MSR cold restrike lamp is incorporated into a Source Four Par, the result being a bright, high output washlight with a colour temperature of around 5600 degrees K. The third key new product is the Image Multiplexer - a multiprism device that turns any ellipsoidal with a six inch colour frame slot into a multi-image projection device. Also new from the company is the range of SlipWay taping cables and other theatrical accessories.
Cerwin-Vega! has made two significant additions to its Pro series of installation speaker systems. Following the success of the V-152, the Californian-based company has now released the V-252 - a dual 15" two-way, full-range system. It has also revisited those two little digits - 36; drawing on the heritage of the renowned L-36PE and SL-36B, the company has now reinvented its legendary ‘earthquake’ sound in the form of a ‘compact tremor’ - an 18" folded horn known as the LR-36. The V-252’s twin 15" woofers share space with a bi-morph HF driver mounted on a proprietary spherical waveguide horn. Designed as a stand-alone, and producing tremendous bass response, the V-252 does not require bi-amping with a subwoofer. In order to attain a smooth response at high SPLs, Cerwin-Vega! has developed a proprietary spherical waveguide tweeter horn flare. The LR-36 utilises a newly-designed 18" woofer, with clean output at 35Hz, and a bias control system for improved linearity and accurate punch. Other innovative features include a newly-designed 18" high-excursion woofer, with die-cast aluminium frame and reverse loading of the woofer, to utilise inherent compression between the cone and the frame.
Lightfactor Sales, UK distributor for Apogee Sound products, hired Bovingdon Airfield in Hertfordshire for the UK debut of the Apogee Sound ALA-9 Line Array touring system.
Despite freezing temperatures and high winds, a steady stream of audio professionals made the trip to the once thriving World War II USAAF base. As well as offering the facility to crank the system up to high volumes, the Bovingdon site was also ideal to demonstrate the quick rigging and de-rigging capabilities of the ALA-9.
Judging by the number of line array launches at the recent Frankfurt MusikMesse, one could be forgiven for thinking that this is an emerging technology, but line array is nothing new. In fact, examples are common from as far back as the 1950s and The Grateful Dead were using the principles of line array in their ‘wall of sound’ in the seventies. However, advancements in electronics and transducer technology, coupled with the use of processors to effectively crossover, equalise and align various types of processor-based speaker systems, has allowed line array to exploit its full potential. Through its ALA-3 and ALA-5, Apogee was one of the first companies to develop processor-based line array systems. The ALA-9 is the natural successor to these and the largest line array system yet produced by the company. During the development of the system, Apogee’s R&D team focused on the needs and wish-lists of the touring industry.
As a result, the ALA-9 features a smooth, clear sound quality, immense power and a robust construction, which should guarantee it holding its
NXT flat panel loudspeakers were recently specified as part of the new speech reinforcement system installed in Eton College Chapel by Cambridge Architectural Research Ltd (CAR), in conjunction with Mission. Using panels from Mission's award-winning FS2-AV Home Theatre system, Tim Lewers, chief acoustician of CAR, worked with other suppliers to install a computer-controlled sound reinforcement system using Peavey Media Matrix software, complete with touch screen display controls. The Mission FS2 satellites are located along the pews and mounted into bronze housings to match the lights and music stands and maintain the existing decor. They are placed in a spaced array of five panels down either side of the chapel to provide complete coverage of all seated areas. Further panels are wall mounted in the ante-chapel and chancel. Each NXT satellite is driven by its own amplifier and time-aligned for distance to the selected microphone, of which there are ten, located throughout the chapel. Thus the direct sound of voices arrives at the listener at the same time as the sound from the Mission FS2 speakers.