Martin Professional is to hire Stig Poulsen as its R&D director. Poulsen takes up his new position in August replacing Finn Kallestrup who leaves Martin at the end of July. Poulsen was previously technical manager at Danfoss Building Control Divisions in Denmark, and prior to that was engaged in development at Infocom Systems, Purup Electronics and ABB Scandia - all Danish firms.
Cambridge-based Adda Super Cases has signed an agreement for the exclusive UK distribution of the Con'dome and Flightdome products with French manufacturer Impact Evenement. These innovative protective products, which have become common sights at trade shows around the world in recent months, are ideal for protecting a wide range of lighting instruments in applications from club opening nights, movie premieres, son et lumieres and other outdoor promtions.
Pioneer has released the CMX-5000, an automatic-beat mixing twin-CD player for DJs. The CMX-5000 is similar to existing rack-mount CD player, but includes a number of developments. The CMX-5000 uses a sophisticated computer chip which analyses the beat of the music playing, adjusts the next track to match the beats per minute (BPM) and smoothly mixes one track into another. It also gives you a choice of four different blends and mix effects (standard cross-fade, cut, echo and zip). It can also auto beat mix seamlessly from any two tracks on the same CD. The CMX-5000 includes the features of the CDJ- 500 series, such as Master Tempo, Fader Start/Back Cue Play, seamless looping, re-looping, digital outs, super fast track search / track scan and a large jog dial. Another new feature is the transparent jog dial, which allows for a comprehensive data display behind each dial.
High End Systems and its lead equity investor, Generation Partners, have hired an investment banking firm to represent High End as it seeks to find a new partner to fund the company's further growth. Although Generation Partners made a substantial investment in High End two years ago, the company's existing management holds a major stake in the company and plans to remain actively involved. The company's expansion plans include a broadening of the product range and a higher profile worldwide, underlined by the new sales offices in New York and London.
Avenger has released two new items for its Conductor and miniConductor show control systems. The first is a new driver designed for the BSS Soundweb which is being heavily used in conjunction with Avenger's Conductor at the Hannover Expo. The driver allows the Soundweb to perform fades when switching to another setting without the need for control from a PC running Soundweb software. Secondly, a new, slim eight-channel RS232-card has been added to the range of Conductor interface cards.
It seems that the replica of the Rose Theatre - built for the award-winning film Shakespeare In Love - is to find a new home on the site of the former Collins Music Hall in Islington Green, North London. Like most film props, the set was to have been scrapped after the completion of filming, but Dame Judi Dench, who starred in the film, felt it too good to demolish and wanted to find it a permanent home so that others could act on it. If all goes to plan, the theatre will be reassembled and ready to open by Midsummer's Eve 2002.
QSC will introduce a new Digital Signal Processing accessory module at the NSCA Expo 2000 in Las Vegas, April 27-May 1. The compact module offers two channels of independent DSP and attaches to the back of most DataPort-equipped QSC amplifiers, without taking up additional rack space. Each channel handles a wide variety of DSP functions, including high- and low-pass crossover filters, high- and low-pass shelf filters, signal delay, compression, peak limiting, six parametric filters, two-to-one mixer, signal splitter and more. Other features include 24-bit, 48kHz converters, contact closures to trigger configuration presets, post-DSP output signal for daisy-chaining signal to other amplifier inputs, memory backup, and power and signal presence LED.
Tannoy Professional has appointed a new distributor for the Republic of Ireland. The Entertainment Company (ETC) based in Swords, County Dublin, is now distributing Tannoy's entire range of pro audio sound reinforcement loudspeakers and electronic system controllers, including the new i5 AW ICT compact moulded speakers and the CMS110 BCE Active corner-mounted subwoofers.
Supplied via its German dealer Amptown SC, Avenger's show control systems - Conductor and miniConductor - will be used in the corporate pavilions of Bertelsmann and Siemens, as well as the 'Planet of Visions' theme pavilion at the forthcoming World Expo in Hannover. These pavilions require a large amount of flexibility for their show control, as the shows include video-servers, lighting equipment and customised AV applications. In addition, the country pavilions of Lithuania, Austria and the UK will also employ Conductor systems.
2000 marked the first full year of trading for Amptown Cases UK, and a debut appearance at the Frankfurt trade show, where the new SiP case inserts and flying RigRax cases generated an enormous amount of interest. The company's Steve Kane told PLASA: "We have been inundated with enquiries and orders from existing and new customers. In fact, the response has been so much better than we anticipated that we have been taking on new staff to cope with the extra workload."
Following months of speculation, has come the news that the distribution of BST pro audio products into the UK marketplace has been changed. Acoustic Solutions Ltd has been awarded the exclusive distribution of the BST line for the UK and Ireland. To coincide with the move, the company has also appointed Simon Parslow, formerly the UK sales manager for Ultrak, the parent company of BST products. His role will see him developing the sales of all Acoustic Solutions products alongside BST to the independent retail sector.
TOA Corporation launched the H-Series of loudspeakers at the Frankfurt MusikMesse this month, aimed at any application requiring unobtrusive units to deliver targeted quality audio. The H-3 and H-3WP have been designed for easy installation at above head-height, directly onto a wall, from where they can deliver quality audio in a 180 degree coverage pattern, eliminating audio dead spaces. Unlike bracket-mounted box-type speakers, the H-3 and H-3WP feature audio with minimum out-of-phase reflection from walls. The grille surface of both units is paintable, and weatherproof H3WP models are available for exterior installations.
In late 1998, Stageline Inc launched legal proceedings against Five Corners (The Mobile Stage Co) seeking a number of injunctions to prevent Five Corners from trading. On March 9, 2000, Stageline's claim for injunctions against Five Corners Distribution was rejected by Quebec Superior Court Judge, Diane Marcelin. She also ordered Stageline to pay $22,500 to Five Corners, partly to cover costs and partly as exemplary damages. Roger Barrett of Star Hire, agents for Five Corners in the UK, told PLASA Publishing: "We are pleased the case has been resolved. Resorting to legal action at every twist and turn has never been our way of doing business - all four Five Corners supplied mobile stages currently in the UK will be working on the BBC Music Live series in May."
DJ Technology giant Numark has secured the distribution in the UK of Behringer's entire range of pro-audio studio equipment. Behringer will benefit from Numark's national dealer network, making the brand easily available across the country, as well as from an established technical back-up and sales support team, based at Numark's UK headquarters. The deal allows Numark to cater to the growing demands from DJs for advanced studio equipment ranging from digital signal processors, compressors and limiters through to parametric EQs and live mixing and studio consoles. Numark UK MD, Damon Crisp spoke to PLASA Publishing: "We are looking to develop into high specification installations, ranging from pre and post production suites, recording studios and late night venues to stadia."
Show production company CJ Spencer Associates has rebranded, and is now trading under the name of Hotcakes UK Ltd. The decision to rebrand comes at a time of expansion within the company in terms of key personnel, office space and substantial IT development at the company's headquarters in Skipton. Hotcakes, whose current clients include Marks & Spencer, Cosmopolitan Show, BBC Good Home Show and Prima, will be promoted as a 'brand experience consultancy', with the ability to understand a client's marketing needs as well as providing the technological skill to produce a cutting-edge show.
As we reported on April 7, Peter Johansen - founder and former owner of Martin Professional - has been sentenced to three months in jail by the local court of justice in Aarhus, Denmark. Johansen, through an intermediary, has now contacted us to offer his version of events. He says that the ruling followed his attempt in the spring of 1999 to block the possibility of a hostile take-over of Martin Professional, 15 months after he left the company as CEO. "Martin was under threat after a long period of unrest, which had driven down the value of the Martin stocks. I tried to top up my 25 percent stock-share to 33.33 percent to be able to block the board from selling to hostile bidders. To avoid further unrest, I decided not to publish my intentions. I did not want the market to get the false impression that I was trying to pave my way back as CEO of my old company."Shortly after the attempt, which did not succeed, Johansen sold a major part of his stocks to Schouw & Co - the present owner of Martin Professional. The sale gave Johansen a marginal profit and whilst the court of justice acknowledged that there had been no motive for profit in his actions, the ruling states that he should have informed the Copenhagen Stock Exchange about his acquisitions. Johansen has decided to appeal against the sentence.
Bob Long has left Macclesfield-based Federal Signal Ltd, where he held the position of managing director. Before joining Federal Signal, Long was managing director of Akusta, a specialist in the provision of high-specification sound and communication systems to offshore drilling platforms. Following Federal’s acquisition of Akusta, Long took on the role of managing director of Federal Signal’s UK operation, which also incorporated Federal’s other UK acquisitions - Millbank and Delta Sound PA. Federal Signal has declined to comment on Long’s departure.
Canford Audio has appointed Mike Reay as key account manager. In this role, Reay will have special responsibility for several Canford product lines, including the Totalsystems range of meters and amplifiers. He will also be taking over front-line responsibilities for Canford`s exclusive UK distributorships of the Intelix range of audio and video matrixing units and DK-Audio’s master stereo displays and matrixes. Formerly sales manager of EMO, Reay spent 10 years establishing the company as one of the UK’s leading pro audio manufacturers.
Saffron Walden-based Tannoy-Audix Systems has secured the contract to supply and commission the public address system on P&O's new Grand Class cruise ships - Grand Princess III and Grand Princess IV. The US$1.25m contract is the latest stage in a long-standing relationship between the two companies, and follows Tannoy-Audix's recent success in winning the PA and general alarm systems contracts for two luxury cruise liners being built in Mississippi for Classic Voyages. These ships, the largest ever built in the US, will each accommodate 1,900 passengers, and will begin service in 2003 and 2004.
Fostex has announced the launch of several new products. The VM88 is the company's first eight-channel digital mixer. Aimed at both live sound and recording applications, the VM88 offers 24-bit A/D and 20-bit D/A conversion, a 44.1 sampling rate and Fostex ASP (Advance Signal Processing). All channels have full three-band EQ, phantom power and individual inserts. The VF-16 is a new 16-track digital combined recorder/mixer with two built-in Fostex ASP digital effects. The unit has eight additional 'ghost tracks' for multiple takes. No compression is used in recording, and data is stored on its own internal E-IDE hard disk in Fostex's FDMS-3 format. Another first for the company is an active monitor - the NF-1A system. Bi-amped with two 60W amplifiers, the system incorporates a range of adjustable filters for different room characteristics. The system also includes an innovative woofer design – made from a combination of wood and banana pulp fibres which provide a clear sound down to 50Hz. Other features include full magnetic shielding.
Following a successful first year of trading, Nexo USA Inc has announced significant expansion plans and a corporate restructuring. David Solari, a well-respected figure in pro audio circles on both sides of the Atlantic, has been brought in to expand the management team in the new role of chief operating officer. Known for his success in building up the Meyer Sound brand, and for the subsequent development of amplifier manufacturer Cyberlogic, Solari also joins the main board of Nexo in the capacity of international marketing director. Jim Sides, Nexo's first corporate officer in the USA, has taken the position of executive vice-president of sales and marketing. As part of the restructuring, the company’s North American sales operations will relocate to premises in San Rafael, California.
SCV London has taken on the distribution of Universal Audio. A familiar brand in the 1960s, Universal's UREI 1176LN limiter was a feature of many major recording studios across Europe. Bill Putnam's classic designs are continued and improved by his sons, and the latest versions of the 1176LN and the Teletronix levelling amplifier LA-2A are now available from SCV.
Jonny Ringo's, Ultimate Leisure's newest venue in Newcastle combines a two-storey café/bar/restaurant with cutting-edge Internet and satellite TV technology. Total Audio Solutions provided a zoned sound system for the venue, to complement the unique video and computer system being installed by Tyneside's Sound & Vision Network. The system is based around Sony's SRP-S900 full-range loudspeakers, SRP-B1000P subs and SRP-P26 power amps, and controlled by the new SRP-F300 digital audio processor, used to provide multiple audio zones, crossover functions, delay, EQ and limiting. S&VN's Brian Howells said: "We saw the F300 as a great advance for this type of installation, where there are no technical people around. We can just set the whole system up, program as many memories as the staff need, and lock it off."
London-based Rossula Limited, the company behind the Lightfactor Sales and LightProcessor operations, has entered into a joint venture with German company Zeck Audio to form Zeck Audio UK Ltd, which will market the entire range of Zeck pro audio products throughout the British Isles, from its base in Greenford, West London. Rossula MD Mick Hannaford, comments: "This is an exciting opportunity to bring a unique and competitive range of innovative audio products to the UK. Our aim is to deliver the brand across the country through a small number of strategic distribution partners."Zeck products suit a broad range of professional applications from background and foreground sound reinforcement to touring and installation systems of all sizes. The range includes microphones, wireless systems, cables, connectors, mixing consoles, signal processors, amplifiers and a range of passive and active loudspeaker enclosures.