Equipment News Headlines
Dynacord's MXE5 matrix mix engine gets new functionality for IP-based media and building control systems
Allen & Heath's acclaimed Dante I/O expanders can now be used within any Dante audio network, thanks to the release of the DT Preamp Control app
Robe Launches New T2 ProfileM Luminaire
Moving light manufacturer Robe Lighting s.r.o. Has launched its new T2 Profile luminaire which offers an array of innovative technologies and the sought-after colour finesse of Robe’s hugely successful Multi-Spectral LED (MSL) light engines.
Crafted for multiple applications: theatre, television, auditoriums, stages, concert environments, etc., the T2 Profile produces over 17,500 lumens (measured at the front lens) via its 850W MSL source, to throw beautiful high-quality light over long distances.
The fixture’s exceptional quietness is perfect for scenarios where noise is crucial including classical concerts or recitals and dramas where you could still hear the proverbial pin drop with a full rig of T2s!
It will also be an ideal long throw partner used in conjunction with Robe’s smaller T1 series fixtures, as both feature the MSL LED engines and therefore produce an identical multi-spectral colour mixing consistency.
The T2 Profile incorporates many unique technologies like adjustable CCT from 2,700K to 8,000K, together with DataSwatch for the quick selection of 237 authentic pre-programmed colours and tones including the most frequently used whites.
A high CRI of 95+ gives gorgeous skin tones, while Robe’s L3 – Low Light Linearity – and very smooth 18-bit dimming enable fabulous fades-to-black. EMS stabilisation keeps the fixture steady whatever is happening around it, and the Cpulse flicker-free management is essential when working with cameras and vision systems.
Other features include the RCCTM (Robe Colour Calibration) system which allows self-calibration of the LED engine without using any external tools.
AirLOC (Less Optical Cleaning) greatly reduces the levels of airborne particles across the optical elements, boosting the overall performance and light quality of the fixture, and it also reduces the time needed for routine cleaning and maintenance.
The T2 Profile has been engineered by Robe to include all the functionality that lighting designers and professionals are demanding with features like fast, easy CMY colour control, a separate +/- green hue control channel, an impressive 5°– 55° zoom, variable 1° and 5° interchangeable frosts with full zoom range capability, two gobo wheels (one static and one rotating), an animation wheel,; two rotating prisms and precise four individual plane framing shutter system.
21st April 2021
Audinate announces new Dante AVIO USB-C adapter is now shipping
Audinate, developer of the industry-leading Dante AV networking technology, has announced the immediate availability of the Dante AVIO USB-C adapter, the next evolution in the popular Dante AVIO family. The Dante AVIO USB-C adapter allows the latest mobile devices and computers to connect to any Dante audio network for playout or recording.
Cost effective, compact and rugged, the Dante AVIO family of adapters allow users to easily use non-Dante analogue, USB, AES3/EBU or Bluetooth audio equipment with a Dante audio network.
The Dante AVIO USB-C adapter connects to devices with USB-C or A ports (cables included) to deliver and receive two channels of audio over a Dante audio network. It requires no additional drivers and works with any application, making it ideal for rapid setup of conference rooms, background music and more.
The Dante AVIO USB-C adapter may be powered via USB or PoE. When connected to a PoE Ethernet switch, 7.5 Watts of power is available to USB-C compatible mobile devices, enabling smartphones and tablets to remain charged while connected to a Dante network.
“The new Dante AVIO USB-C is the logical evolution of our immensely popular USB model,” says Mark Gerrard, senior product manager at Audinate. “With native support for the ports on the latest tablets, phones and computers, Dante AVIO USB-C adds pass-through power to make it the indispensable tool for connecting devices to Dante audio networks.”
The Dante AVIO USB-C adapter is now available from authorised Audinate resellers.
16th April 2021
Astera Launches New AX2 PixelBar
Wireless LED lighting specialist Astera has launched its new AX2 PixelBar product, a quality linear wash fixture with wireless control, on-board battery, individually addressable LEDs, ultra-high colour rendering, fabulous digital colour calibration and a 21-degree beam.
As with all Astera products, the AX2 is fully wirelessly controlled, robustly engineered, stylish and comes complete with a range of ingenious rigging tools to provide solutions for multiple lighting applications and sectors, from concert touring to live events to TV productions and architectural and installations.
The AX2 PixelBar is a perfect extension of the Astera AX range which includes LightDrops and LED PARs. It is currently available in two versions, a one-metre fixture with 16 x 10W LEDs and 50cm fixture with eight 10W LEDs.
It was developed to meet demand for wall, backdrop or surface washing luminaires offering the same highly practical and quality lighting options as other Astera products and is compatible with the AX and Titan ranges.
Premium optics focus the light sources and superior colour mixing, and homogeneity ensure a super-smooth even wash of light across its entire path.
Utilising Astera’s acclaimed Titan LED light engine, the AX2 features a high CRI and TCLI and can produce a beautifully refined range of perfect colour temperatures from 1750 to 20000 Kelvin. The digital calibration allows it to precisely reproduce any colour or gel filter.
Other neat Astera innovations include a package of smart feet, hangers, connectable endcaps and, via the integrated airline track, units can quickly be assembled in numerous ways.
The quick connect system for attaching two or more units is designed to maintain a consistent pixel pitch between conjoined fixtures, and the feet can be loosened to assist in angling a row of AX2s uniformly along its entire length. Great for illuminating larger surfaces like walls and set pieces.
With the press of a button on one AX2, all the fixtures in a string of connected units will conveniently auto DMX address via their integrated IR modules. They communicate with each other and each fixture knows its position in a ‘flow set’.
They can be controlled via the AsteraApp and inbuilt Lumen Radio wireless CRMX, in addition to a physical 5-pin XLR socket and Powercon in / out connectors for running a wired option, making it extremely straightforward to daisy-chain AX2s.
The AX2s are also super-easy to hang in a truss or to a roof beam or other structural component.
In this product, Astera has addressed the needs of multiple production disciplines and scenarios to produce a product as flexible and attractive as possible, including making the fixture IP65 rated for exterior use.
From classic wall-washing during events, AX2s are also ideal for being rigged in flown trusses and used for cool individual pixel effects. They can be used on stage to light up bands / artists from a footlights or side position, or for light curtains, and are versatile flicker-free light sources for TV studios, livestream set-ups and other recording and camera environments, as well as a great ‘special’ for film shoots.
Astera sales director Sebastian Bückle commented: “Ten years ago, we offered a battery-powered LED bar which was one of our most popular products at the time, and some people are still using it while others have asked us for years when we will offer another wash fixture.
“I am happy to announce that we now have a worthy successor, packed with the latest technology such as the Titan LED engine and auto-addressing which detects all the connected lights and assigns individual DMX addresses. The AX2 was well worth the wait!
“We believe AX2 will appeal to lighting professionals working across a broad range of sectors and will also be appreciated by those currently using other Astera products in their lighting designs and schemes.”
As you would expect from Astera, several cool accessories are also available for AX2.
These include barndoors to further focus and control the light source as needed. One additional use is that these can act as a 'glare shield' so the LEDs can't be seen, only the effect on the wall.
SuperClamps and a TrackHangar facilitates hanging the fixtures and enables the attachment of safety bonds, while the FlyBar suspends up to four-metre lengths of connected AX2 PixelBars. There is a quick-release clamp for demounting; TrackPins for ‘gobo heads’ and multifunctional feet.
Jump Cable is a hybrid solution to link two AX2s with power and DMX data, and Astera’s famous integrated charging flightcases are available in four and eight-way versions for combining charging with safe and secure transportation of the fixtures.
16th April 2021
Solid State Logic Expands 500 Series Module Range with New Processing Favourites
Solid State Logic (SSL) has introduced two new modular processors as part of revitalising its renowned and often emulated SSL 500 Series module range. The classic G-Comp bus compressor, E-EQ and E-Dynamics processing modules have been given a fresh, sleek brushed steel facelift, while a feature enhanced VHD+ module, brand new stereo Ultraviolet stereo equaliser (UV-EQ) and Six Channel (SiX CH) modules, complete the new-look range.
Niall Feldman, SSL director of new products comments: “For nearly 20 years we have made many of our classic console and processor-based innovations available to more producers, engineers and musicians via the 500 module series. The opportunity with our more recent product to continue this work and bring a new range of modern classic 500 modules to a broader market, was too good to resist.”
Ultraviolet takes the acclaimed minimum phase-shift Violet stereo EQ section from the new studio-favourite analogue processor Fusion, and puts it into the 500 series format. Over and above Fusion’s Violet EQ, Ultraviolet takes features one step further, adding two dedicated mid-bands, with precision focus mode for ultimate EQ control. Ultraviolet draws on the SSL legacy of selecting key frequencies and response curves to create a musical and intuitive EQ, designed to quickly dial in the sound of your mix, sub groups and individual instruments.
SiX Channel is a single-width 500 Series channel strip using the SuperAnalogue processing features from SSL’s incredibly successful compact Six console, including mic-pre, low and high frequency EQ, as well as the single knob compressor. Six Channel is a simple way to add additional mic/line inputs to the line level inputs of any professional audio device, including the stereo channels of the Six console. It is also a flexible way to create a professional modular mixer from a ‘summing’ 500 Series rack unit.
The immensely versatile VHD+ pre now features front and rear inputs with four different impedance selections making it an extremely versatile mic pre and DI box for a wide range of microphones and instruments. Delivering an ultra-clean SSL SuperAnalogue grade recording path, the switchable patented Variable Harmonic Drive (VHD) system uses a 100% analogue signal path to generate rich harmonic distortion.
All SSL 500 modules are shipping and available worldwide.
9th April 2021
Nimble solutions for vloggers and creators
Rounding off the launch of its MKE 400 compact shotgun microphone for cameras and the XS Lav clip-on microphones for mobile phones and computers, audio specialist Sennheiser has also announced the launch of various Mobile Kits. These include a Manfrotto PIXI Mini Tripod and Sennheiser Smartphone Clamp, making them ideal for vloggers and content creators for whom the smartphone is the tool of choice during some or for all of their creation processes. To complement existing microphones, the Mobile Kit is also available on its own as an accessory.
“The Mobile Kits are designed to satisfy all your audio needs in ready-to-go packages,” says Nicole Fresen, product manager at Sennheiser. “Whether you prefer an on-camera mic or a wireless lavalier, there is the right mic for every requirement, plus a few clever accessories to cater to your needs.”
As video recording often happens on various devices, both the MKE 200 and MKE 400 include 3.5mm TRS and TRRS cables for use with DSLR/M cameras and mobile devices, respectively. With the Smartphone Clamp and Manfrotto PIXI, the Mobile Kit versions have vloggers and creators prepared for all recording situations.
XS Lav USB-C Mobile Kit adds the Smartphone Clamp and PIXI to Sennheiser’s wired USB-C lavalier microphone to create an ideal vlogging and podcasting bundle.
Sennheiser’s wireless lavalier solution is not only supplied with the Smartphone Clamp and Mini Tripod but also includes an additional TRS-TRRS cable for connection to smart devices (also available separately as XSW-D Mobile cable). This special cable features an attenuator to ensure optimum levels for mobile devices.
The CL 35-USB-C cable (TRS to USB-C) is for you. Available separately as an accessory, it’s ideal if you want to use the MKE 200 Mobile Kit, MKE 400 Mobile Kit and XSW-D Portable Lav Mobile Kit with a USB-C device.
9th April 2021
ETC debuts two new theatrical fixtures
ETC launched two new theatrical fixtures as part of a two-day-long international online event. The Source Four LED Series 3 and Desire Fresnel are the perfect pairing for any theatre looking to successfully launch themselves into the modern day with incredible brightness, impressive colour mixing, and wireless DMX/RDM features.
Source Four LED Series 3 is the third generation of the colour mixing LED fixture. When incandescent Source Four fixtures hit the market in 1992, they quickly became an industry favourite. As technology advanced, so did the fixtures. Now boasting an eight-colour mixing system that includes deep red LEDs, users will be amazed at the nuanced colours they can create with this fixture. “With Series 3, you finally get your swatch book back,” says Broadway lighting designer Justin Townsend.
Uncover a depth and richness to fabrics, scenery and, most importantly, skin tones with the Lustr X8 array. If you’re looking for a tunable white-light, you also have the option with the Daylight HDR array.
Add the newly designed XDLT lens tubes for ultimate brightness from every location in your theatre. Hang these in a box boom, on a catwalk, or from the farthest back of house position and know that with up to 13,000 lumens, their brightness will out-perform expectations time and time again. Designers will also appreciate the reduced light leak and near-zero chromatic aberration.
ETC also adds a redesigned classic to its portfolio with Desire Fresnel. This Fresnel takes the best of the incandescent theatrical favourite and pairs it with the latest technology has to offer. A full eight-colour array, wireless DMX/RDM, an intuitive user interface, and NFC configuration from your mobile device using ETC’s Set Light app are only a few of the features that come standard with Desire Fresnel.
Everything users love from incandescent Fresnels (smooth, beautiful light, impressive barn dooring, and adjustable zoom) has been incorporated into Desire Fresnel. ETC has reworked how the lamp and lens work together so you get more light through the entire zoom range.
Source Four LED Series 3 and Desire Fresnel are the perfect pairing for any theatre. Smooth wash, ultimate brightness, and impressive colour mixing for every stage. ETC is once again setting standards that are anything but standard.
31st March 2021
Dynacord's MXE5 matrix mix engine gets new functionality for IP-based media and building control systems
Dynacord's MXE5 was introduced to the market last summer as the first member of the new MXE matrix mix engine series. The performance audio matrix with 24 x 24 crosspoints provides comprehensive routing and mixing capabilities, while also serving as a communications hub for IP-based peripherals with extensive control and monitoring functions. The entire network infrastructure including Dante audio transport and AES70-compliant control, is already onboard. MXE5 is ideally suited for fixed installations in stadiums and sports venues, convention, conference and event centers, modern churches and larger educational facilities.
As of now, the MXE5 matrix mix engine can also be easily integrated with media control systems from Crestron and Q-SYS using plug-ins. MXE5's DSP configuration is accomplished in SONICUE sound system software, one of the most powerful software solutions in the industry, offering complete control and easy, intuitive operation. In addition, MXE5 also features an HTTP or HTTPS server application programming interface (API) for integration with IP-based media and building control systems.
Additionally, MXE5 also works as an OCA (AES70) controller for integrating other OCA-based devices, such as Dynacord IPX series amplifiers, and provides a powerful interface from the audio system to all other controls within an installation.
"The best audio quality has always been a top priority for all Dynacord products,” says Christian Glück, senior product manager, Dynacord. “But integration capabilities with media control and building management software are becoming increasingly important to the market. With our new third-party plug-ins and programming interface, MXE5 now possesses an enhanced feature set that makes it even better suited for such requirements. We will continuously expand these features in future. We've also created a whole new set of SONICUE training videos and web-based training specifically for MXE5 and the TPC-1 Touch Panel Controller to help users design their solutions as efficiently as possible."
The plug-ins, which contain all major control functions, and SONICUE sound system software can be downloaded free of charge from the Dynacord website. The new training and web-based training can be found on Dynacord's YouTube channel and on the Bosch Communications Systems Academy platform.
30th March 2021
Chauvet Professional Puts Fine Point on Force
Power defies size. Chauvet Professional demonstrated that earlier this year with the introduction of the Maverick Force 2 Profile and Force 1 Spot. Although compact and lightweight, the two fixtures easily matched or exceeded much larger products in terms of output, brightness and performance features.
Now the company has taken the power-size ratio to an even finer point with the introduction of the Maverick Force S Profile and Maverick Force S Spot. Complementing their two larger Force series stable mates, the new ultra-compact fixtures are intended for smaller scale projects that, despite their size, call for CMY colour consistency, advanced optics and other high-performance features.
“We have expanded our Force series so we can continue to address the needs of an evolving market as our industry emerges from the pandemic,” said Albert Chauvet, CEO of Chauvet. “With their limited footprint, the new Force S fixtures are ideally suited for smaller projects with limited crew sizes. Yet, at the same time, they deliver outstanding, very professional-level performance in terms of output, colour rendering, focus, and effects.”
Given their compact design, Maverick Force S fixtures will improve efficiencies by taking up less space in warehouses and on trucks. Once on stage, however, the 14,000 Watt spot and 14,669 Watt profile will create an unforgettably powerful impression thanks to their intense output and vividly realistic colours.
Their array of features includes CTO colour mixing, a 4.5 to 41.6 degree zoom for the profile (4.1 to 43.4 degree for the spot), 16-bit dimming, a five facet prism and two gobo wheels (one rotating and one static). A variety of advanced control options are also available, including DMX, WDMX, sACN, Art-Net, pre-set synch, and RDM capability for remote accessing.
Like their larger counterparts, the Maverick Force S units operate discretely making them well-suited for smaller installations that place a premium on quietness, such as the livestream studios that have emerged during the pandemic. For an industry developing new opportunities like these, the Maverick Force S Profile and Maverick Force S Spot are little fixtures that can make a big difference.
25th March 2021
Obsidian Control Systems marks a year of NETRON
Obsidian Control Systems marks a successful year of shipping its comprehensive NETRON data distribution line of RDM splitters and EtherDMX nodes and announces a new Version 2.6 firmware release. Prompted by the increasing fixture counts and continuous growth in the number of Universes used on a show, NETRON supports applications from live production and venue installations to architectural environments and has enjoyed strong market adaptation globally since its release.
“The introduction of the NETRON line has been a real success story despite the difficult circumstances of 2020,” states Obsidian Control Systems product manager Matthias Hinrichs. “The feature set, plug-and-play design and competitive pricing have really hit the sweet spot and the feedback from our users has been phenomenal. It is a perfect complement to our ONYX console range and a well-designed package for anyone requiring rugged, reliable and affordable data distribution systems.”
NETRON was fast out of the gate with large-scale networks utilising ONYX and NETRON in the TV and film market, special events, large holiday light shows and various venue installations. Clients have valued NETRON for its ease of use, flexible mounting solutions, smart display configuration concept and reliable 24/7 operation with some customers owning hundreds of units. Creative Technology Group / NEP Live Events of Henderson, Nevada, purchased a large number of NETRON nodes for use on the myriad of events they are involved in across corporate, exhibition, entertainment, broadcast and sporting events. Ian Dobson, project manager/lighting at Creative Technology, has been happy with the purchase and stated: “NETRON products are packaged and configured well, with vast amounts of configurations available. They were clearly designed with the user and ease of set up in mind.”
Justin Stancil of Stancil Entertainment used NETRON EN4 and EN12 nodes last December for a spectacular Christmas light show at The Mall at University Town Center in Sarasota, Florida. He adds: “During the entire time of our nighttime Christmas light show, where we were running a show every half an hour every single night for almost two months, we had zero downtime with any EN4 or EN12 unit. NETRON nodes offer us maximum flexibility at an amazing price. The web interface is super intuitive and helps make assigning ports easy, and you can seamlessly switch between ArtNet or sACN protocols. I also love the fact that you can make changes directly on the unit via its LCD screen in a pinch. This is all I will use in the future for nodes and absolutely recommend the entire NETRON line for anyone regardless of what console they are using.”
The NETRON range includes three RDM splitters: RDM 6XL, RDM 645 and the 'Swiss Army Knife' RDM 10, a unique combination of ten-port AB splitter and integrated two-port EtherDMX node. Three dedicated Ethernet to DMX converters: EP4, EN4 and the high-density EN12 round out the product line. Featuring outstanding build quality, an integrated Cue engine, contact closures and preset recall capabilities have proven very popular for installations and trade show applications.
Continuous firmware improvements and feature enhancements are made based on market input, including refinements to NETRON’s intuitive remote web configuration. The latest Version 2.6 firmware is now available for download on the NETRON product page at https://obsidiancontrol.com/netron
25th March 2021
Highlite International introduces Artecta Display fixtures
Highlite International BV introduces the new Display Series of indoor fixtures for professional architectural applications. Switchable between 3000K and 6000K, the dimmable LED sources offer a high CRI. This makes them highly suitable for lighting galleries, art, and other colour sensitive subjects and locations.
Artecta’s latest range of indoor lighting fixtures introduces the Artecta Display Series. It is intended for highlighting objects and locations where high appeal is paramount, such as museums and galleries, lighting art and paintings. The compact fixtures offer a high CRI (>92), which helps the original colour tones to come through. They are switchable between 3000K and 6000K colour temperatures and can be dimmed manually to adjust the output intensity to the desired ambiance.
The Display Series offers solutions for a gamut of applications with a range of Fresnel, profile and flood fixtures. Fresnel fixtures project a soft-edged output suitable for lighting objects at close range. Profile fixtures project an adjustable hard-edged output for projecting a delimited shape on a surface. Equipped with a wide beam angle, a flood fixture is intended to illuminate a full wall or decor. Apart from the Flood model, all models are available with a standard mounting bracket or with a 3-phase track adapter that can be mounted on most 3-phase track systems.
The implementation of Display fixtures is not limited to art-related areas, it is also very much at home in public places, such as clothing stores and theme parks. Each projector offers multiple control options, and a number of models include accessories to enhance their functionality. Several models come in different output power variations and every fixture is available in black or white.
19th March 2021
Robe Launches New LEDBeam 350 Moving Light
To those familiar with the massively successful little LEDBeam 150, this is a bigger, brighter (6,600 lumen) variant, delivering even more punch and presence for those wanting crystal clear beams and beautifully rich colour washes.
Robe has retained and built on all the features that made the LEDBeam 150 a winner, including a spectacular zoom range of 3.8 to 60 degrees and innovative lens coating technology which keeps the lenses clearer and scratch-free.
Anti-static properties further reduce dust collecting on the lens, and the latest coating treatment brings countless additional benefits like lengthening the intervals needed between cleaning and enhancing the light output.
More advanced technology includes CPulse, Robe’s acclaimed Pulse Width Modulation control system that removes any on-screen camera flicker, making the LEDBeam 350 a brilliant match for the most advanced HD and UHD camera systems.
All the most popular features of the smaller LEDBeam including fast movement, colour mixing, zoom and control can be maintained via a compatibility mode, allowing for the seamless combination of both 150 and 350 models together on the same rig for perfect continuity.
The 12 40W RGBW high powered LED multi-chips provide plenty of high-quality output and superior CMY colour mixing control. DataSwatch contains 66 premixed colours and tones including whites for fast reliable colour selection, and Robe’s L3 Low Light Linearity system delivers imperceptible fades to absolute blackouts.
Quietness is crucial in certain scenarios, and the LEDBeam 350’s advanced cooling system and new super smooth zoom stepper motors make it exceptionally quiet and ideal for television, theatre, performance and event applications where no noise is critical.
Also, with theatre and performance in mind, outstanding tungsten lamp emulation is possible via the ‘halogen lamp mode’ which perfectly mimics red fade and the thermal delay of lamps in several ranges from 750W to 2500W. Further finessing is possible utilising the variable CTO (virtual colour wheel channel) for perfect whites from 2,700K to 8,000K.
An optional Epass Ethernet switch will automatically maintain network connectivity in case the fixture experiences power loss.
With versatility in mind, Robe has designed the LEDBeam 350 FW version to offer a Fresnel wash type of beam for smoother edges and optimal colour homogenisation.
Weighing under 10kg, the unit is hugely powerful for its light weight, while the compact size makes it highly usable even in the most confined studios or spaces. Overall, it is a very sound and reliable investment with all the Robe guarantees for multiple applications from special events and live shows to installations.
LEDBeam 350 will additionally work seamlessly in combination with other industry-standard Robe luminaires like the LEDBeam 150, ESPRITE, MegaPointe, Spiider and many others.
production photos: Nathan Wan
18th March 2021
Director Takes Centre Stage in Avantis Firmware V1.1
Allen & Heath has announced the release of Avantis firmware V1.1, a major update bringing powerful new features to the recent TEC Award-winning 64-channel digital mixer. Headline items include Avantis Director software, new dPack processors and numerous enhancements and workflow improvements for engineers working in all environments, from houses of worship to live streaming.
The centrepiece of the update is the hotly anticipated release of Avantis Director software, a free Windows and Mac OS application enabling offline editing and online control capabilities. Offline mode can be used for the creation and editing of show files and system configuration, as well as serving as a training tool for new users. Online mode delivers full remote-control of the mixer, freeing the engineer from the mix position to make changes from anywhere in the venue.
More processors from the flagship dLive system have been added to the dPack add-on bundle, including OptTronik, Hypabass and the much requested Transient Controller (all free to existing dPack owners). The latest in the DEEP family of compressors, OptTronik brings the much-loved sound of a legendary electro-optical compressor to Avantis with zero-latency operation. In the FX Rack, Hypabass enables the engineer to add both infra-bass and sub-bass frequencies to a signal, whilst Transient Designer delivers endless sound shaping possibilities via the manipulation of the attack and sustain envelopes of the signal.
Additional features include the introduction of LCR+ mode for enhanced LCR mixing, Solo-In-Place functionality and a host of new routing and patching options for advanced processing and monitoring applications.
“In the face of a challenging year, Avantis has proven itself a huge success in houses of worship, theatres, venues and for live streaming, thanks in part to its extensive ecosystem of I/O, option cards and control apps,” says Jack Kenyon, Avantis Product Specialist at Allen & Heath. “Avantis Director completes the system with comprehensive offline editing and further extends the control possibilities. As we look forward to live events returning over the course of the year, Director ensures that Avantis is ready to rock in any application.”
Download Avantis V1.1 from: https://www.allen-heath.com/avantis/
17th March 2021
artLynx uno, a single universe Ethernet gateway
As the inventor of Art-Net, Artistic Licence is well known for the quality of its Ethernet gateway products (devices that convert Art-Net or sACN into DMX512/RDM). The artLynx range offers particular value for money, using the convenient DIN rail format and offering – until now – a choice of two or four universe conversion.
Now, with the launch of artLynx uno, customers requiring a basic Ethernet gateway can benefit from even greater savings. As the name suggests, artLynx uno is a slimmed down version of the product, providing just a single universe of data conversion. However, this is often adequate for customers without heavy data processing requirements.
artLynx uno is particularly targeted at users of DMX-Workshop, the free software package written and provided by Artistic Licence. DMX-Workshop is a powerful diagnostics tool for the management, analysis and configuration of lighting networks, but requires an Art-Net Ethernet gateway to link the PC to fixtures running DMX/RDM or DALI. artLynx uno provides an ideal solution in a compact and economical form.
11th March 2021
New video reference library of all Martin MAC Aura PXL's internal FX macros
The Martin MAC Aura PXL has a rich feature set of internal FX macros allowing maximum versatility even when time is of the essence. Created as a resource for lighting designers, Martin's UK distributor, Sound Technology Ltd, has published a complete video reference library of all of them.
There are six categories of Macros in the PXL: Beam Intensity FX, Beam Colour FX, Aura Intensity FX, Aura Colour FX, Beam and Aura Combined FX, and Full Fixture FX. Each category has its own video, time-stamped in the YouTube description with each individual effect.
Utilising the MAC Aura PXL's 141 Aura LEDs and 19 Main Beam LEDs, each effect can also have speed, colour, zoom range and output level manipulated simultaneously, and both the Aura and the Main Beam effects can be active at the same time.
11th March 2021
No Position Compromised Thanks to Chroma-Q’s New Hang Force Accessory
Chroma-Q has announced the launch of a new accessory – The Hang Force – designed for use with their Color Force II and Studio Force II (48” and 72” models).
Restrictions with where fixtures can be hung on the truss due to the crossbar-section is now a thing of the past, thanks to the Hang Force bracket which allows fixtures to be hung from trusses where the position of clamps might not align with the original fixture clamp position. A series of slots allow the clamps to be re-positioned to fit anywhere on the truss pipe.
For added flexibility and speedy mounting, the Hang Force uses rapid quarter-turn locks so it can quickly be installed and removed from the fixture. A centred carrying handle also means it can be moved easily.
The bracket also enables all the fixture sizes in the range (12”, 48” and 72”) to hang equally side-by-side when rigged on to the truss.
The Hang Force comes with the necessary hardware to upgrade existing fixtures for use with quarter-turn locks.
The Hang Force can also be used on the floor thanks to a set of plates to stabilise the whole assembly.
Chroma-Q’s Global brand manager, Paul Pelletier commented: “We are excited to release the new Hang Force. We are always looking to develop new accessories that add additional versatility and flexibility to our products to enabling them to exceed the high levels of creativity required by our customers.”
The new accessory is available now from local Chroma-Q dealers.
10th March 2021
Strand standardises on DIN rail for Vision.Net
Strand, the original name in theatrical lighting and a Signify entertainment lighting brand, has announced that it is standardising its portfolio of industry-leading Vision.Net architectural lighting components to use 35mm DIN rail for mounting.
Strand’s new, modular family of hardware devices consists of nine new products including control modules, rack trays, enclosures, power supplies and other components. This new solution can be customised to any size application, making it the perfect architectural lighting control solution for educational, theatrical and house of worship environments.
“Customers have relied on Strand’s custom lighting control enclosures for years,” says Fernand Pereira, global head of marketing and product management, entertainment lighting at Signify. “Customers received exactly the solution they needed in a factory certified, UL rated enclosure that could be easily installed in the field. However, this required each solution to be custom designed and assembled in Strand’s factory. By deploying standardised, DIN rail mountable modules, customers get the same flexibility in a solution that’s easier to order as boxed goods, can scale easier down the road and can be assembled at any dealership or in the field while still keeping the regulatory compliance.”
Using standard 35mm DIN rail ensures system integrators can easily retrofit the solution into any existing installation or incorporate it into any new build out. With modular components and a variety of trays and enclosures available, the solution can scale to address any application, with rack, flush, or surface mounting options available. Because components are individually listed, solutions can be ordered off-the-shelf and assembled at any location. However, customers desiring custom-built solutions can still leverage Strand’s manufacturing expertise and have systems assembled in the Strand factory. Vision.Net control modules are plenum rated so that they can be installed if required in plenum air spaces.
The new Strand Vision.Net DIN rail hardware components include:
Strand Vision.Net DIN Rail Enclosure – this flush or surface-mountable NEMA rated enclosure offers two DIN rails and an adjustable voltage barrier.
Strand Vision.Net DIN Rail Power Supplies – these 100-277 V AC DIN-rail mountable PSUs offer 60 or 150 W of power to all the Vision.Net components in your system.
Strand Vision.Net 4-Way Splitter Module – this DIN rail or surface-mountable Vision.Net control module provides 1x4 splitting of a Vision.Net hardwire control signal.
Strand Vision.Net 8-Port Digital Input Module – this DIN rail or surface mountable module offers eight discrete digital input-only ports for 3rd party device signaling to Vision.Net.
Strand Vision.Net 4-Port Digital I/O Module – a DIN rail or surface-mountable control module offering up four discrete digital control inputs, four open collector outputs, and four dry contact relay closures for signaling to/from Vision.Net or acting as an intermediary device.
The new Strand Vision.Net components are expected in the second quarter.
3rd March 2021
Hippotizer Nevis+ embraced as ‘vital solution’ for smaller productions
Hippotizer’s Nevis+ media server is proving to be an essential tool for smaller productions around the world, offering the features and power of its ‘bigger brother’ stablemates but in a more compact and affordable package.
Some of the world’s leading visual design companies have embraced the creative possibilities of the Nevis+ since it was launched in July 2020, using it as a simple-to-use training and demo option as well as specifying it for small to mid-size events.
Maggie Zhu at KUPO (Keep Ur Performance Outstanding) Shanghai was one of the first investors in a Nevis+.
“The main attraction of Nevis+ is its price, coupled with the fact we can use all of Hippotizer's comprehensive software features,” she says. “For us, the main market for Hippotizer is for performance and theatre. Nevis+ is the right solution for these events, as one machine includes the functions of playback, control, timeline and so on.
“We also purchased the Nevis+ for customer training, demonstration and promotion. In the past, we used the bigger Hippotizer media servers such as the Montane+ RTX or the Boreal+ when we needed to test. But now, it's very convenient to use the Nevis+.”
Over at Sofit-108 in Russia, Andrey Miroshnichenko invested in the Nevis+ towards the end of 2020. “Last year was obviously very difficult for everyone working in visual production,” he says, “but due to its attractive price the Nevis+ offered a good solution for our training purposes. It’s small, powerful, and not too expensive. It’s a dream!
“We are now preparing for projects for which the Nevis+ will be the perfect solution, and we’re looking forward to seeing the results in the near future.”
Pavel Lenoch at LightNeq in the Czech Republic invested in two Nevis+. “The price of the Nevis+ is so much closer to solely software-based solutions, but with Nevis+ we get hardware, too!" he says. "Moving forward, I think it will be much harder for its ‘bigger brother’ versions to win for projects with a smaller budget as our customers can now access a real server with complete set of features for lower price.
“Another good thing for LightNeq, as a Hippotizer distributor, is that we can use the Nevis+ as a demo unit. It always gets more attention from our clients when a demo is done on real unit than on a PC with Hippotizer Play. It’s a very impressive server, and makes it easy to train users even in the most complicated of tasks.”
Over in Slovakia, City Light used its Nevis+ Media Servers as part of its visual solution for a nationwide COVID conference at the Nitra exhibition centre.
“As always, Green Hippo was our first choice for signal playback and processing, thanks to the product quality and features, but also our great experience with technical support and excellent communication from Green Hippo’s sales manager, Evzen Zomer,” says City Light’s Marek Plancar. “We decided to use Nevis+ for the first time for several reasons. Firstly, it has a great price-to-performance ratio, and compared to software-based solutions no additional computer is necessary.
“Secondly, its compact footprint allows us to install Nevis+ units close to the projectors and displays, reducing the need for complex video signal distribution, while still being able to control all the systems via ZooKeeper running on a remote PC.
“Two-projector blends from a single Nevis+ also makes the unit very versatile both for projections and LED screens.”
The company is inviting users to experience Nevis+ by requesting a demo via their website.
2nd March 2021
A&H Expand AHM Control Options with Crestron and Amx Drivers
Allen & Heath has released new drivers for its AHM-64 matrix processor to facilitate control from Crestron and AMX by Harman. The drivers add to an impressive array of existing control options, including IP hardware controllers and wallplates, GPIO interfaces, and Allen & Heath’s own multi-platform and BYOD-friendly Custom Control app.
Based on the TCP/IP control protocol for AHM-64, the drivers enable integration with industry-leading control systems. They offer modules for all key routing parameters, and are an invaluable starting point for building user interfaces in corporate, leisure, education and other installation environments. Control elements include levels and mutes for input and output channels, crosspoint levels and mutes, and preset recall.
“Since the release of control drivers for dLive, Qu and SQ we have seen an increase in projects selecting Allen & Heath equipment for ease of integration,” commented Martijn Verkerk, technical marketing manager at Allen & Heath, “but it’s the AHM-64 which will benefit the most from the integration, as it’s naturally finding its place at the heart of conference centres, museums, and university campuses around the globe.”
Additionally, an AHM-64 driver for the Kramer control platform is now also available directly from Kramer.
Links to the drivers and downloads are available now on the Allen & Heath website.
1st March 2021
Broadweigh introduces SensorSpace
SensorSpace, a new cloud-based platform, is set to revolutionise the way riggers can access and manage data from Broadweigh's wireless sensors. Launched this month, SensorSpace can be used to remotely monitor the status of any Broadweigh sensor – load or wind speed – and help site managers and rigging managers make decisions or take action before, and during a show.
Elliot Van Laere, product specialist at Broadweigh, explained: "SensorSpace is a game-changer. It not only provides a way to visualise load cell or wind speed data in the cloud, so anyone with access can log in on a desktop or mobile device, but can easily be set up to automatically send SMS, email or app-based alerts in the event of unexpected change. A whole team can stay connected to a dashboard keeping them on the ball and informed wherever they are located.”
SensorSpace is fully customisable which means dashboards can be as simple or as complicated as they need to be, from numerical display of sensors, to in-depth overlays, charts and graphs showing live and historical data. With a SensorSpace plan, users can store up to three years data should post event analysis be required.
Elliot Van Laere, continues: "In the case of an outdoor festival, for example, where wind is a major concern for temporary outdoor structures, SensorSpace can give live data on the average speed and maximum detected gust. This can give a very good idea on site for when to go ahead with a build or not, coupled with weather forecast data. It can also allow for constant monitoring of ongoing wind conditions. Alternatively, at the same event, SensorSpace can alert managers if equipment is not added as detailed in the rig plot. Adding Broadweigh wireless load cells in the structure can monitor single trusses and/or the total load on each leg. This can be monitored locally, on a handheld or laptop or now with the addition of SensorSpace, from your hotel room, or back to head office!"
"Multiple events can be configured in SensorSpace. These can have different trigger levels and send messages to different people depending on the level of danger and time of day. These can take the form of emails, text messages, slack links, telegrams and more. After the festival, there may be a requirement to look back over the data to see if, in hindsight, different action could have been taken. Historic data can be downloaded for detailed analysis or displayed in many ways using dashboards. This does not negate the fact that there is a need to have an experienced rigger available to help make decisions onsite. However, it does make the sharing of data with stakeholders more efficient."
26th February 2021
Allen & Heath's acclaimed Dante I/O expanders can now be used within any Dante audio network, thanks to the release of the DT Preamp Control app
The free application, compatible with Windows and macOS, allows control of multiple DT168 and DT164-W expanders connected to Dante-equipped third-party digital mixers and sound management systems, bringing the acclaimed sound of Allen & Heath’s preamps and best-in-class 96kHz conversion to a host of new users in live, broadcast, install and studio applications.
The portable DT168 with carry handle and the wall-mount DT164-W are both unique in form factor and offer an ideal solution for distributed networks where high-channel-count Dante or AES67 I/O is required. The IEC armoured cable or DC power options for the DT164-W make it particularly suitable for in-wall mounting and stage pockets in permanent installations.
“Since the launch of these products we have received numerous requests for extending their use beyond Allen & Heath mixing systems,” says Martijn Verkerk, technical marketing manager at Allen & Heath. “Houses of worship, university campuses, and arenas have all showed an interest in deploying our Dante solutions alongside their existing audio system, and DT Preamp Control enables that.”
26th February 2021
GLP Streamer Duo Launched with Vastly Expanded Remote Functionality
Building on the instant success of the Streamer, GLP’s new LED light for video conferencing, live streaming and home office work, the company has announced a new packaging variant for those wanting multiple sources, called the Streamer Duo Kit. Simultaneously, the free-to-download app has been updated, offering significant expansion of the remote-control capabilities of all Streamer units.
The Streamer Duo Kit packages two of the GLP Streamer units together with a pair of extendable tripods, USB-C cables and USB-A to USB-C adapters for both units. This comprehensive accessory set also comes with a pair of soft drawstring bags to protect the units whilst in transit. The packaging insert has been cleverly designed to be placed directly into standard portable hard cases, reducing the products’ environmental impact.
The Duo package has been designed for applications specifically where two units would be beneficial to place more evenly spread light coverage on a presenter from multiple angles, thereby creating more professional studio-like situations.
With the launch of the Duo set, comes a new version of the control app. Free to download for both PC and Mac platforms, it allows the user to intuitively control up to 16 Streamer units, either locally or remotely from a single device and is compatible with both existing and new Streamer units.
GLP US president, Mark Ravenhill, said: “This expanded capability provides significant new functionality, especially to those making use of the remote facility for corporate streams as well as full broadcast situations.”
Summarising the overall design rationale, he added: “Streamer has been designed with easy, remote control accessibility in mind. With a standard internet connection, permission can be granted for a remote professional to control the output levels and colour of the Streamer units. This is ideal in situations such as TV broadcasts, webcasts, corporate presentations, investor meetings and much more.
“Having an AV, or lighting professional take full control of individual Streamer units at the presenter’s workspace, removes the pressure, allowing them to focus on what they are best at within a perfectly lit setting. And, of course, up to 16 Streamer units can be controlled remotely from a single device, whether that be a computer, tablet or smartphone.”
Streamer Duo is available for purchase from any GLP dealer or from Amazon worldwide. The control app can be downloaded from the GLP Streamer website at www.streamer.rocks
26th February 2021
Elation expands KL “Key Light” Series with full-colour KL Fresnel 8 FC
Elation Professional is expanding its KL “Key Light” Series of LED Fresnel luminaires with the full-colour spectrum KL Fresnel 8 FC. With creativity at its heart and quality as its fabric, the new KL Fresnel 8 FC meets the strict standards of performance venues that are light critical and noise sensitive.
Designed for TV and film, theatre, trade shows or any general AV application requiring high output soft light with precise colour reproduction and adjustable colour temperature, the KL Fresnel 8 FC excels at producing the soft field light that designers desire in order to masterfully highlight performers or scenery on stage. Offering a wide array of rich saturated colours, subtle pastels and dynamic white light, it is an ideal key and fill light source for situations requiring outstanding performance and colour quality.
The KL Fresnel 8 FC produces the finest quality of light with dynamic colour temperature adjustment and full colour control. It houses a highly efficient 500W RGBMA LED engine calibrated at 6500 Kelvin and emits a beautifully diffused wash of light. It produces over 18,000 field lumens with a motorized zoom range of 10° to 50° for easy adjustment of beam size. For illumination that is more precise with less light spill, adjustable and removable eight-leaf barndoors allow for customised shaping of the beam.
Colour rendering is of the highest quality with high CRI (92), TM30 (88) and TLCI (95) values, meaning that colour re-creation is extremely accurate both to the eye and to the camera. As a flexible complement to any professional lighting system with customisable effects to accommodate aesthetic design requirements, the KL Fresnel 8 FC has also been designed with respect for the whisper-quiet requirements of the professional stage and studio.
Optimised for the specific requirements of broadcast, the KL Fresnel 8 FC can adjust for light that shifts away from pure white towards green or magenta through a green-magenta shift adjustment and a virtual gel library. Capable of matching the white balance for camera, users can easily shift the colour temperature without the use of plus/minus green gels and filters. Additionally, the LED refresh rate can adjust up to 25 kHz so there is no flickering when used with high-speed cameras.
DMX controllable with full RDM support, it offers intuitive manual control for stand-alone operation when desired for instant control of zoom, intensity, colour temperature, green shift and other important settings. The display and dedicated dimming and control encoders are conveniently positioned at the bottom side of the fixture to ensure unobstructed access.
The KL Fresnel 8 FC is portable yet rugged enough to withstand rough handling on today’s fast-paced sets. It can be mounted on a stand or suspended using any standard clamp or the included Junior pin adapter. It is fully self-contained without the need for an external power supply and offers locking power pass through for easy linking of multiple units.
Exceptional colour rendering quality, precise CCT presets and remotely adjustable LED refresh frequency make the KL Fresnel 8 FC an excellent choice for today’s fast-paced production environments. The KL Series also encompasses warm-white and cold-white models, as well as a full-colour spectrum LED soft Panel light.
26th February 2021
Optocore announces flexible M-series MADI routing upgrade for DiGiCo consoles
Optocore has announced that it has upgraded its popular M-series MADI interfaces further, making it compatible with DiGiCo premium consoles, and providing additional functionality.
Furthermore, the new, advanced versions have all the advantages of Optocore’s popular DD-series, and much more, at exactly the same price point, making it super cost-effective. M-series devices are now the principal means of plugging MADI streams directly into the DiGiCo loop to enable MADI streams to be input and output (other than DD-series and DiGiCo’s own devices).
This includes the channel count recognised by the DiGiCo devices, which is identical to the channel count provided by the DD2FR-FX and DD4MR-FX.
This upgrade applies equally to the entire M-series, as all available channels can also be freely distributed through all MADI ports on any of the five M8 and M12 devices. For example, one show could use an M12-BNC/OPT, and provide one 64/64 MADI fibre port and two 32/32 MADI BNC ports, while for another show it could be two 64/64 fibre MADI.
States Optocore applications engineering manager, Maciek Janiszewski: “The compatibility of the M-series, along with the ability to control Optocore preamps from the console, makes DiGiCo/Optocore systems by far the most effective solutions for essentially all installations.
“Furthermore, when not incorporated within the DiGiCo loop, M-series functions as stand-alone, full-capacity MADI routers; for example the M12 allows for routing of 512/512 channels at 48K.”
The new routers are shipping with immediate effect.
23rd February 2021
KLOTZ – XLR mixing adapter AB-MM and XLR-BMP
With the KLOTZ AB-MM and XLR-BMP stereo-to-mono mixing adapters, it is possible to easily reproduce a stereo signal via a 3.5mm or 6.35mm stereo jack through an XLR mono input of a mixing console or an active loudspeaker as a mono signal without distortion.
The resistor matrix integrated in the connectors ensures that level addition is prevented when summing the stereo signal into mono, thus guaranteeing absolutely distortion-free reproduction of the stereo signal into mono.
This makes it possible, for example, to play back a stereo signal from an MP3 player or laptop via only one active loudspeaker or to use a mono channel in a mixing console for the stereo source.
The KLOTZ mono-to-stereo mixing adapters are available in 3 versions:
Build 1: AB-MM
Plugs: 3.5mm stereo jack – XLR 3 pin male
Cable lengths: 0.9m / 1.5m / 3m
Build 2: XLR-BMP3.5
Plugs: 3.5mm stereo jack – XLR 3 pin male
Cable length: 0.2m
Build 3: XLR-BMP6.3
Plugs: 6.35mm stereo jack – XLR 3 pin male
Cable length: 0.2m
18th February 2021
GLP launches market’s first Creative Light wireless, battery powered systems
GLP's Creative Light 1 (CL1) and Creative Light 1 Plus (CL1+) are the first battery-powered and completely wireless creative LED systems on the market. They are designed for maximum flexibility in an almost unlimited range of applications for professional and semi-professional users alike.
Both feature 24 RGB LEDs and offer countless design possibilities with features such as main colour control, colour patterns, a sound-to-light feature via an integrated mic and three dynamic pattern macros. Whether all pixels are used together, individually via pixel mapping or via the integrated double layer FX engine the system is capable of producing stunning lighting effects.
The Creative Light 1 (CL1), offers the same performance as the Creative Light 1 Plus, but is aimed more at the semi-professional user with its intuitive control options (Manual, IR Remote Control, and Android and iOS app).
The Creative Light 1 Plus (CL1+), also features an integrated LumenRadio CRMX module. This makes it ideal for use in professional event technology and wherever the CL1 system is to be integrated into an existing DMX network. The control options of the basic CL1 are of course also available in the Plus version.
The integrated 10,000mAh battery offers enormous power, and the selectable power modes ensure an enduring performance of up to 24 hours. Whether garden party, gala event, theatre, cabaret, TV studio or large festival stages the Creative Light 1 delivers enormous flexibility, at the same time requiring minimal space. Thanks to the extremely fast setup, the CL1 system is perfect for bands, event organisers, and venue owners.
When the CL1 system is controlled via the smartphone app, the CL1s generate a mesh network among each other without any additional gateway, the so-called GLP iQ.Mesh network. Within this GLP iQ.Mesh network, each CL1 receives and amplifies the signal, enabling the creation of a network over long distances.
The advantage of the smartphone app is that it provides an intuitive user interface and enables particularly fast system set-up, allowing multiple devices to be grouped for live control. This also facilitates control of intensity, strobe and pulse effects, background and foreground colours, a variety of dynamic patterns, sound-to-light and much more.
GLP Creative Light CL1 and Creative Light CL1 Plus are available as a single unit in a cardboard box, as a tour set in a ten-piece charging case, and as a set of six in a soft case.