Video and AV News

Chinese New Year Brought to Life
Tuesday, 22 April 2003

Hong Kong - The tourism industry is one of the major pillars of Hong Kong’s economy, which is why its Government has initiated plans to upgrade the major tourism clusters of Hong Kong.

Sydney-based Laservision Macro-Media was commissioned by the Hong Kong Tourism Commission last August to draw up a harbour lighting report. The report was wide-ranging, and covered the architectural lighting of Hong Kong’s landmark buildings (as well as opportunities for regular lighting shows in Victoria Harbour), the inclusion of a night-time attraction, and an assessment of current lighting pollution. As a result of the report, the Hong Kong Tourism Commission promptly decided to showcase some of the lighting techniques to be employed under Laservision’s plan during the Chinese New Year holidays. China Light and Power agreed to offer sponsorship to ensure the trial became a reality.

During the one-week celebration, the Laservision crew (led by executive producer Simon McCartney and technical director Peter Milne) transformed Hong Kong’s Cultural Centre building into a canvas for a 14-minute show incorporating scenic projection, intelligent lighting (designed by LD John Rayment) and laser animation - synchronized to a sound score, also produced by LMM.

Martin Professional MAC 2000s and Exterior 600s provided the core elements of the lighting system, bolstered by searchlights, dataflashes and a Laservision laser system, whilst seven E/T/C PIGI projectors handled the artwork and a Turbosound speaker system provided sound reinforcement. Laservision’s

Barco displays for Quiksilver, Times SquareBarco displays for Quiksilver, Times Square
Thursday, 17 April 2003

USA - Barco Media is pleased to announce that it has provided state-of-the-art display technology to the new Quiksilver Boardriders Club store in Times Square, located on the corner of 42nd Street and 7th Avenue in New York City. Quiksilver designs and manufactures a diverse line of products for young men and women catering to the surf, skate and snowboard riding lifestyle. Quiksilver brands offer a range of products including clothing, swimwear, accessories, eyewear and wetsuits.

Barco installed three of its DLite 10 LED displays above the entrance to the store. Each display measures 5' 11" high by 13' 3" wide and are used to show surf, skate, and snow video. All three displays are controlled by Barco's Signam!cs content management system, which allows Quiksilver to schedule the right message at the right time.

"The installation of our total display solution in this highly visible Times Square location is of paramount importance to Barco," says Dave Belding, market business manager for Barco Media. "We are very pleased to be working with a company whose brand is recognized worldwide as cutting-edge."

(Lee Baldock)

 
 
Christie projection for Cheltenham Ladies
Thursday, 17 April 2003

UK - Cheltenham Ladies College has had its presentation infrastructure boosted with the installation of a new state-of-the-art projection system. Designed and installed by AVPS - who have serviced the college’s requirements in the past - the larger contract to fit out the multi-purpose assembly hall was put out to three companies. AVPS tendered successfully and their Christie-based proposal was accepted on the strength of the product specification, obviating the need for an on-site demonstration.

AVPS’ Jules Deakin believes that it was his preference for the Christie Roadrunner L6 LCD projector which won them the contract. He recommended the L6, offering 1024 x 768 true XGA resolution, as the best solution in view of its superior brightness and its dual lamp facility. "It allows the college to run both lamps to achieve 5200 ANSI lumens during the day when the ambient light is bright, and use the single lamp option during the evening," he says.

Deakin knew that installing a digital cabling infrastructure into a Grade II-listed building brings its own problems, but he was undeterred. He was also confronted with the dimensions of the auditorium, requiring a 90ft throw distance from the projection room to the pre-existing conventional 16ft x 20ft matte screen. Deakin therefore opted for Christie’s long-throw 4.6-6.0:1 zoom - one of nine lens attachments designed for the L6. But he knew that by using the Roadrunner he could apply the high degree of lens shift required to correct the 30° off-axis differential between the ceiling-mounted pro

 
Blink TV supplies new theatre sized video package for Liberty XBlink TV supplies new theatre sized video package for Liberty X
Tuesday, 15 April 2003

UK - Blink TV launched a new theatre-sized visual package on the recent six-week Liberty X UK tour, along with the supply of video project management, specification and hardware. The package is a new, highly flexible Blink format designed to bring high production values to tours playing theatres, town halls and other smaller-sized venues.

Blink’s project manager for the Liberty X tour, Adam Walton, worked in close consultation with lighting designer Jvan Morandi. Morandi is extremely specific about the look and style of all the shows on which he works and used a High End Catalyst video system as an integral part of the show’s visual aspect. Morandi and Walton chose an innovative format for Blink TV, with two Fast-fold video screens onstage for the opening and support band slots, onto which the Blink programmes could also be projected. Aesthetically, this has resulted in the screens taking on a far more ‘involved’ and integrated role than if they had occupied the traditional side-stage positions.

Having the screens mid-stage has also enabled the Blink package to offer the four opening acts the facility of utilizing them for their own video material and logos during their performances. The main show sources are all stored in Morandi’s Mac G4 and projected via two Barco G5s onto three inflatable rear screens. The projections produce spectacular liquid effects, texturing and undulating colour swirls when combined with Morandi’s dynamic lighting cues.

All video equipment was supplied to Blink by rental house PSL. Blink’s tec

 
 
Multi-site Standard Bank event with Gearhouse SA
Monday, 14 April 2003

South Africa - South Africa’s Standard Bank Stars event on 29 March was an incentive awards evening held to honour employees throughout the country who are part of Standard Bank’s retail arm. Gearhouse South Africa was contracted by Jenny Lenahan Productions to provide the technical equipment and skills for the event, which took its theme from three decades of television and featured music, celebrities and television personalities from each of those eras.

Heading up the Gearhouse SA team was Ian Watts, who is operation’s manager of the Johannesburg branch’s audio-visual department. Ian was project manager of the Standard Bank Stars and comes with 15 years’ experience in the broadcast industry - at the SABC, and M-Net as well as Gearhouse Broadcast on an international basis. What made the Standard Bank Stars so unique was that the event took place simultaneously at 11 venues throughout South Africa, with its main ‘hub’ being the Pavilion at the Sandton Convention Centre (SCC) in Gauteng.

Activities at the SCC were broadcast live to other areas of South Africa (including Cape Town, Durban, Port Elizabeth and another four venues in Johannesburg itself) while live audio feeds from each of the other 10 venues were broadcast back to the SCC. Gearhouse SA provided technical input for each venue, with the Pavilion at the SCC requiring a great deal more equipment and technicians including three large cube walls and a very big stage, which featured speeches, awards, live performances from the bands and backing dancers.

Structure

 
Mike Walker heads up CT/Screenco’s sales team
Monday, 14 April 2003

UK - Avesco plc have announced a major sales and marketing restructure following the integration of Creative Technology and Screenco into a single resource. As sales director, Mike Walker will head up the consolidated team which has relocated to Chessington, and which sees the return of Adrian Offord who, prior to his last position with General Location, previously worked at Screenco.

The team also includes Alex Davenport, who joined MCL two years ago, and sales and marketing coordinator, Emma Houlden, from CT’s Wandsworth office. Also joining the team from CT is Charlie Whittock, who has recently returned from the US where he has been working in event and production management, having worked closely with Creative Technology since the company was founded in 1985.

Said Walker: "In centralizing the sales team at Chessington on the Silverglade Business Park, we will be able to offer the most comprehensive AV staging service in Europe, to each of the brands’ respective clients. This includes Screenco’s specialist outdoor video screens, CT’s indoor LED screens, and the AV inventory of MCL, which includes lighting, staging and sound. Underpin this with CT’s vast inventory of high end video and you have a truly complete solution to offer clients. It’s all about extending the service and meeting clients’ needs in a changing market."

The new role considerably broadens the remit of Mike Walker, who spent six years with Creative Technology before moving to Screenco four years ago. "We have a strong, motivated team h

 
 
Video and audio signals over CAT5
Thursday, 10 April 2003

UK - AutoPatch Europe is offering transmitter/receiver modules to provide point-to-point transmission of signals including Y/C with stereo audio (up to 300m), composite video (NTSC, PAL, SECAM) with stereo audio (up to 300m), RGBHV (up to 100m), for cost-effective routing and distribution of video and stereo audio throughout a facility. In addition, there is a modular CAT5 Matrix System, up to 32 inputs x 32 outputs, providing true flexibility in a CAT5 installation.

CAT5 cabling with RJ-45 connectors provides a convenient and cost effective alternative to coaxial cable: CAT5 is lighter, more flexible, and a fraction of the cost of coaxial video cable. The result is an all-in-one solution for routing and distributing professional quality video and audio that reduces installation and cable costs in less rack space, say AutoPatch.

(Lee Baldock)

 
E//T//C UK are Totally London
Tuesday, 8 April 2003

UK - Large format projection specialists E//T//C UK were called in by the London Tourist Board to help launch their high-visibility ‘Totally Lond On’ advertising campaign. E//T//C’s Paul Highfield supplied a single 6kW PIGI projector, slide artwork and his technical expertise for the event, staged in the fabulous new glass roofed Great Court of the British Museum.

Keystone correction was by Wyatt Enever at DHA, and the projection was beamed onto the new limestone arch in the Great Court. It consisted of a simple slide, pastiched in the style of a London Street sign, emblazoned with the words ‘Totally LondON’ and ‘www.visitlondon.com’.

White Light supplied architectural lighting and LD Simon Jones for the event. Both E//T//C UK and White Light were approached for the project after their highly successful illumination of the Tower of London last year for the UK:OK campaign.

(Lee Baldock)

 
 
Stardraw attributes support URL linkage
Friday, 4 April 2003

UK - Stardraw.com has added powerful new functionality to its suite of software design and documentation packages in the form of URL links within attributes. Each symbol within Stardraw can contain an unlimited number of ‘attributes’ which are data fields representing numbers, text or database links. Attributes are used to describe a real-world product and can indicate, for example, the manufacturer name, product model number, price, etc. These attributes now support URL (Uniform Resource Locator) links which will be familiar to most people in their simplest form: as website addresses.

All of the products in Stardraw applications now have at least one link, to the manufacturer's homepage, while other product ranges within Stardraw - BSS for example - already have links to dynamic pages on the manufacturer’s website that use a script to give users instant and specific access to all available online product data through a single mouse click. Similarly, many ranges are now linked to the InfoCOMM IQ database - an online source of standardized technical data.

Only last month Stardraw announced Online Libraries that enable users to retrieve symbols directly from a web database as and when they are required. This new functionality means that symbol attributes can themselves derive data from any provider, any manufacturer, any data source. Furthermore, it is planned that manufacturers should themselves be enabled to add value to their symbols by adding their own URL links directly.

According to Stardraw marketing director Rob Robinson: "The addit

 
Scene Change brings lighting into the video ageScene Change brings lighting into the video age
Thursday, 3 April 2003

UK - Leading lights and newcomers to the entertainment industry turned up to see what the future holds for lighting at the launch of Scene Change on March 25. The new company, sister to DHA Lighting, is taking DHA’s 30 years of experience in gobo creation and large-format projection for the performing arts forward into the video age. It offers a huge range of video effects, from abstract animations to bespoke footage. It also provides royalty-free video clips from its own libraries and those of Artbeats, Digital Juice, The Digital Vision Motion Clip Library and others.

The Open Day at the MacOwan Theatre, Earls Court, was staged in conjunction with High End Systems, whose Catalyst system has proved ideal for replaying Scene Change’s video footage, and Flying Pig Systems, who provided control of the lighting and projection through the new Wholehog III. It took place on and around the set of LAMDA’s The Fix, for which Scene Change provided custom video footage. The day provided an introduction to the firm’s capabilities and products - as well as giving the many visitors familiar with lighting, but unused to video, the chance to explore the new tools that Scene Change’s technical director Nigel Sadler predicts will herald a new age for lighting.

Visitors were able to see the system at its best thanks to a performance by Tina Turner - aka DHA and Scene Change receptionist Carmel Omalabi, who has appeared on TV’s Stars In Their Eyes.

According to Sadler, the event opened people’s eyes to what is possible. &qu

 
 
RADlite on StarfinderRADlite on Starfinder
Wednesday, 2 April 2003

UK - Projected Image Digital showcased a RADlite visual manipulation system with television lighting director Will Charles, who utilized it in a new and innovative way on the Carlton TV series ‘Starfinder’. The show, shot at Black Island Studios, Park Royal, north London for transmission as a series this autumn, is produced by Justin Scroggie and features a spectacular set designed by Richard Drew.

‘Starfinder’ is a children’s games programme, set on a space station, with elements from both Crystal Maze and Big Brother. Each episode sees four ‘astronauts’, aged 12 - 14, who won their places via the internet, engage in a series of games, and battle for popularity with the viewers who vote them on or off the space station. The simulator part of the programme - where the contestants whiz through space, playing games, in their special vehicles - is recorded in a ‘green screen’ environment, with ‘virtual’ backgrounds and foregrounds (front and rear views of the inside/outside of the simulator) dropped in later for final transmission.

Whilst piloting the simulator, the astronauts view outside space through a monitor screen, and also play the games on the screen. To make this shot as realistic as possible, Charles wanted to have a screen reflection and a feeling of movement running across their faces - which is where the RADlite came in.

He chose RADlite over conventional video because he wanted this element to be under the control of a lighting desk, and to be able to use it in similar fashion to a key

 
Creative Technology showcases OscarsCreative Technology showcases Oscars
Tuesday, 1 April 2003

USA - Creative Technology North America provided high performance display technology for the recent 75th Annual Academy Awards ceremony, which aired on ABC and was seen in 150 countries around the world. The celebration, thought somewhat subdued, took place at the Kodak Theatre in the Hollywood and Highland Complex and was hosted by comedian and actor, Steve Martin. Presenters included John Travolta, Susan Sarandon, Richard Gere, Julia Roberts, Ben Affleck and Halle Berry, to name a few.

Creative Technology provided 17 Digital Projection Lightning 28sx projectors to project video images onto a variety of projection surfaces throughout the venue. The most interesting surface was a 30ft tall ‘flute’ that sat centre-stage and also served as a scenic element. The flute, approximately 40ft in diameter at the top, narrowing down to 7ft at the bottom, was created out of white laser cloth, which is slightly transparent but still opaque enough to use as a projection device. Throughout the evening, images were projected onto the flute from eight 28sx projectors. The projectors were housed in custom-built hydraulic projection wagons enabling the projectors to tilt up and down, shooting video onto different positions of the flute. The main screen, also referred to as the ‘best picture screen’, was a 22ft x 30ft, 4:3 aspect ratio, Stewart, front projection screen, supported by three Lightning 28sx projectors. For added versatility, window framing was used as an overlay to give the screen the appearance of a 16:9 aspect ratio projection device.

Two cu

 
 
Barco strengthens LED market position with acquisitions
Tuesday, 1 April 2003

USA / China - Barco’s Media & Entertainment division has acquired the assets of US-based Trans-Lux West and China-based Beijing Leyard Electronics Technology Co Ltd, in order to further strengthen its position in the full-colour LED (Light Emitting Diode) display market.

Trans-Lux West Corporation, based in Logan, Utah, is a manufacturer of full colour and monochrome displays, message centres and scoring systems for sports applications; Leyard Electronics Technology Co Ltd is a privately-owned company that designs, manufactures and installs LED displays for the Asian market, with strong focus on China. The two investments confirm Barco’s strategy for continued growth in the full colour LED display market by consolidating and expanding its presence in the key North American market and entering the fast growing Chinese market. The two investments are expected to deliver additional sales of more than 25 million Euro in the first full year of operation, thereby making Barco the worldwide leader in the full color LED application market.

"The acquisition of Trans-Lux West and Beijing Leyard Electronics Technology forms part of Barco Media & Entertainment’s long term strategy to become the worldwide leader in various LED display application markets," says Stephan Paridaen, vice-president of BarcoProjection. He adds: "While we have already realized many high-profile installations both in Europe and North America, we can now consolidate our position in North America and also gain entry to China, one of the world’s strongest growing e

 
Total Production launches in US
Wednesday, 26 March 2003

USA - Mondiale, the publisher of Total Production magazine, have announced a licensing agreement with new American publishing company, Austin Burbank Media Productions LLC. The agreement will see the launch of a new magazine - Total Production US - in March 2003 serving the lighting, audio and staging industries in the USA. The magazine will reflect the values of its European sister but be dedicated to US events and news.

Austin Burbank founder and editor is Bruce Jordahl, formerly the editor of the US-based Pro Lights & Staging News (PLSN) magazine. He commented: "Total Production has long had a great reputation over here for its editorial values and commitment to the industry. A US version will give us the time and space to fulfill those same aims specifically for the American market. By bringing the title over, the industry already knows the style and quality of magazine we are going to produce."

Head of Mondiale’s International Division, Justin Gawne, added: "This is a great opportunity for everyone. Austin Burbank has been set up by industry professionals that fundamentally care about the live and touring industries. That is mirrored by the approach of Total Production and Mondiale here in Europe. We have every confidence that Bruce and his team will make a success of the title in the States."

Austin Burbank Media will be operating the Editorial department from their Texas base under Jordahl, and advertising sales are located in Burbank, California where Vicki Stephenson, Gavin Allen and Erika Gray will be based.

(Lee Baldock)

 
 
Power Gems' new ballast
Wednesday, 26 March 2003

UK - Power Gems is currently previewing the latest product in its Xenon Ballast range, the XE200/2, suitable for leading brands of Xenon 2kW followspots. Electronic ballasts offer extended lamp life over magnetic ballasts and they are much, much lighter.

The CE-approved ballast is 35cm x 17cm wide x 24cm high and weighs 8kgs. Its supply Voltage range is 185– 265V a.c and its supply frequency is 47-63Hz. It has a power factor of 0.65 and lamp current up to 85A, with a lamp voltage range of 19.2-28.8Vdc.

(Ruth Rossington)

 
ROH Charity Gala
Wednesday, 26 March 2003

UK - A Charity Gala Concert at the Royal Opera House, London, drew together a glamorous line-up of acting and musical talent in support of the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund.

Among the stars helping to raise money for the cause were Alan Bates, Terence Stamp, Nicholas Grace, Dame Eileen Atkins, Michael Palin, Rula Lenska, Sinead Cusack and Jeremy Irons. Among the musical line-up were Bryan Adams, Brian May, Alessandro Saffina and the Operababes.

Production manager Robbie Williams brought in White Light Events to take care of lighting, a duty overseen by lighting designer Mikey Robertson, with Jason Larcombe as associate LD. Robertson says: "The stage was too big for our purposes, even with the number of performers who would be appearing on it, so we halved the depth by putting in a back projection screen. This freed up some of the side lighting fixtures which we used for back-projecting gobos and patterns onto the screen."

As well as working with the ROH’s "excellent" in-house rig (run from the ROH’s own ETC Obsession console), Robertson brought in additional moving light fixtures to cater for the rock and roll element of the show. For this, Martin Professional’s Philip Norfolk offered Roberts the use of some MAC 2000 washlights and MAC 2000 Performance fixtures - along with Martin’s new Maxxyz lighting control system.

Robertson explains: "With a show like this, we couldn’t prepare for everything that might come up, so we needed to have as much flexibility as possible. We used the house rig to create the basic

 
 
Barco LED screens for major European sports venues
Wednesday, 26 March 2003

Germany / Portugal - Barco announced today that it has won orders for Slite LED screens to two major European football stadiums - the brand new Estadio das Antas Stadium in Porto, Portugal, which has been chosen to host the European Football Championships in 2004, and the Stade de Genève in Switzerland, which will be used to host the Euro 2008 Football Championships, co-hosted by Switzerland and Austria.

96sq.m of Barco’s SLite 10 LED screen will be installed at the Estadio das Antas Stadium, which has a seating capacity of 50 00. The opening game of the championships will be played in the stadium on June 12, 2004.

Commenting on the project win, Marco Bruines, Division Manager, Barco Media said: "Barco’s LED display solutions have long been regarded as the reference in the rental & staging and major events industries. Reliant Park in Houston was our first major win in the sports market. Winning the installation of Stadia das Antas confirms the fact that we are fast becoming the preferred solution provider for LED displays at brand new stadiums on both sides of the Atlantic."

The Barco displays, which will be installed at the stadium during the summer of 2003, take on a unique configuration never before seen in Europe. The 96sq.m SLite 10 will be divided into two screens of 48sq.m each positioned on either side of the field. The screens will be installed on columns that enable them to be rotated to face either the field or the highway that bypasses the stadium. When not in use during matches, the column-mounted displays will be turned towa

 
Projection Company Launched
Wednesday, 26 March 2003

UK - Projectionist Pod Bluman has recently set up Pod Projects Ltd - a company specializing in large-format projection work.

Bluman is an experienced projection designer: he started his career with Labyrinth, a company which specialized in ‘Guerilla-style’ projections, probably the most famous of which was the image of a naked Gail Porter projected on to the Houses of Parliament in London. He went on to work on numerous projects, including projections onto Buckingham Palace, MI6 and the Tate Gallery, as well as being involved in the River of Light project for the Millennium celebrations in Liverpool.

In the last two years he has been the video crew chief for a number of large projects, including the Vodaphone Ball 2002, the New Year’s Eve celebrations at the Millennium Dome and the launch event for the Birmingham Bullring. More recently, he has taken on the production of some events, completing a number of high profile projects, including the anti-war images that were projected on to the Houses of Parliament, projections onto Sizewell B Nuclear power station for Greenpeace and the projection work outside Madame Tussauds for GMTV’s 10 year anniversary party.

Pod Projects Ltd, 65 Coppetts Road, London, N10 1JH. Tel: +44 (0)208 374 8400

 
 
Screenco/Unitek's world first for World Indoor GamesScreenco/Unitek's world first for World Indoor Games
Tuesday, 25 March 2003

UK - Screenco joined forces with screen manufacturer Unitek to provide a groundbreaking new graphics display which revolutionized the information scoreboard definition at this year’s IAAF World Indoor Championships in Athletics, at Birmingham’s NIA. Screenco had initially won the contract to supply sports presentation suppliers, Fast Track, with big screen reinforcement following their success at last summer’s Commonwealth Games in Manchester.

Fast Track had been contracted by the IAAF to stage manage the prestigious three-day event, and their production manager, Bob Capel, was soon in conversation with Avesco’s business development manager, Dave Crump, discussing ways in which the somewhat antiquated scoreboard technology might be improved. Crump called LED display manufacturers (and Screenco suppliers) Unitek. They debated the feasibility of a colour LED screen being developed to interface with sports information technology company, Deltatre (who provided the real-time results service), and event timing contractors, Seiko.

Unitek, in partnership with Technographic Displays, provided the hardware, software and personnel for the creation of the large central 32sq.m banner screen, which formed the core of the graphic display. This screen was driven by the Activ Processor, which provided the clarity and sharpness of text and graphics that enabled the messages and media to be viewed from all around the stadium. The Banner system also provided a hugely improved format for scoreboard applications, with combined text, graphics, animations, trans

 
ARB all set for move to new premisesARB all set for move to new premises
Monday, 24 March 2003

UK - ARB is preparing to move into new premises in Buckingham this April, consolidating its nationwide operation into one site. Pictured (right) taking tenancy of the empty 35,000sq.ft premises are directors (left to right) Adrian Jones, Paul Gardiner, Peter Boot, Steve Kilby and Nick Brooks-Ward.

The move is part of the company’s ongoing restructuring since it became part of the CSS Stellar Group PLC, and all its regional branches will be transferred to the new facility. The move coincides with the launch of a new corporate identity and significant restructuring of the procedures and team approach. Commercial director Steve Kilby commented: "The move is one of several significant changes that will improve our efficiency and the service we can offer clients. The events marketplace has changed a lot in the last decade and it is time to bring some long-established ARB practices into the 21st Century. This new building will be adapted to suit the specific needs of our specialist divisions, bringing significant improvements for staff and clients."

(Ruth Rossington)

 
 
AVC adds latest LED technology
Monday, 24 March 2003

UK - Award-winning event production company, AVC Productions, has just added to its already impressive portfolio of presentation solutions by investing in the very latest indoor LED screen technology.

The ultra slim 36-panel system allows screen sizes of up to 12sq.m and facilitates the relay of both video and data imaging. Patrick Hill, Group managing director told us: "We have always driven our business forward by looking for ways to improve the service we offer. By investing in this product, we can now provide clients with an innovative solution where more conventional projection alternatives just don’t work."

The LVP0630 purchased from Lighthouse, has a pixel pitch of 6mm and a very high brightness of 3000 Nits. It incorporates Lighthouses proprietary fourth generation M4 Technology that has been developed to ensure that the colour balance of every pixel, and the brightness of every LED, is identical. Lighthouse M4 Technology also incorporates 13-bit processing, the highest performance in the LED screen industry, allowing each panel to display 8192 grey scale levels per colour.

(Ruth Rossington)

 
Powerflo fluorescent ballastPowerflo fluorescent ballast
Friday, 21 March 2003

UK - Power Gems, best known for its design and manufacture of electronic HMI ballasts, has released the first in a series of high frequency ballasts for the remote control of fluorescent fixtures used in the motion picture and TV lighting businesses. This four-tube model, FB4/2P, automatically drives both 4ft and 2ft tubes without the need for manual selection. Additionally, a local dimmer and a DMX512 input, provides continuous dimming from full light output at 75W down to 1% light output. Individual tube cut switches are provided for greater flexibility and save the need to disconnect tubes at the fixture. True tube running indicator LEDs are provided for each tube.

The design team’s brief was to come up with a ‘rugged ballast’ with a reduced parts count. The result is a unique four-tube power circuit which employs just three FETs, including a ‘unity’ power factor corrected (alf) input, thus permitting its use worldwide on voltages from 90V -260V.

Power Gems’ tube ignition circuit has been demonstrated to strike tubes that other ballasts cannot, which may save the user money. The ballast is electronically protected against failure from live connection-disconnection of the fixture and reduces the risk of electric shock when re-connecting live end caps.

(Ruth Rossington)

 
 
New marketing service for the entertainment industry
Thursday, 20 March 2003

UK - This week has seen the launch of The Marketing Business, a company which offers SMEs in the entertainment technology industry, the full range of marketing expertise, from business development and export advice to corporate identity and public relations.

The Marketing Business is an informal association of three companies which together have over 60 years experience in the entertainment technology business and which individually are recognized as experts in their field: PE Consulting, Harmer PR and The Wells Partnership. PE Consulting was formed in 2002 by Peter Ed, previously marketing director for ETC Europe and business development manager for Strand Lighting. Peter’s experience will be of great benefit to companies wishing to expand their business by moving into exporting or into new market segments by combining tried and tested marketing techniques with in-depth knowledge of the entertainment technology industry. Harmer Public Relations, which provides the public relations and copy writing side of the operation, has enjoyed continuous links with the entertainment technology business ever since its formation by Lesley Harmer in 1980. Current agency clients include AVW Controls, ETC and Theatre Projects Consultants. The last of the trio is The Wells Partnership, whose graphic design skills have been used by many companies in the business, including Rosco, Wybron and MAVCO.

Marketing is all about communication but, as Peter Ed points out, what and how you communicate isn’t simply a case of the sales director working a few additional hours each w

 
Quentor launches the latest in transit case design
Tuesday, 18 March 2003

UK - As fast as digital technology within the broadcast industry develops, Quentor matches it with the design and development of its range of innovative transit case and storage products.

The company’s Q-Fix flight cases are constructed from high quality weight-saving aluminium honeycomb panels, giving a good strength to weight advantage. They also utilize a new, patented, construction system offering high strength and quality assembly.

The cases are ideal for applications within the broadcasting, entertainment and AV industries, including as they do flight-trunks and racks, together with more specialized cases for aerials, cameras, lighting and other broadcasting equipment. Q-Fix Cases are offered in a range of standard sizes or may be custom-built in almost any size, style and colour. Quentor also specializes in precision cut custom foam inserts tailored to suit any piece of equipment.

(Ruth Rossington)

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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