Holophonix for Archeopteryx: huge 3D Amadeus sound system for Dinosaur show in Beijing

Immersive audio for the masses, with a (french) touch of sheer creativity and reliable innovation: Amadeus has been involved in the installation of over 180 of their speakers in the 10,000-square meter space of the Beijing National Indoor Stadium used for ‘The Long Gone Dinosaur’ project to be opened in 2019, and featuring state of the art technologies.

Rows of Amadeus speakers hung for immersive sound.

The gigantic show – which plans to be open to the public for the next 15 years – has been designed for and constructed within the Beijing stadium, part of the Olympic Park constructed for the 2008 Summer Olympics.

The ‘The Long Gone Dinosaur’ show was created as an educational event for children and adults to tell the story of the rise and fall of the dinosaurs 65-million years ago. It is one of the most technically advanced and largest shows ever created and includes forests, a lake, a mountain, rain, immersive sound, and life-size robot dinosaurs that move around the stadium space on a hidden rail system.
In addition to the three-dimensional ‘realistic’ indoor landscape, a massive, curved 150-meter wide by 30-meter high screen running at 12K resolution adds to the sense of being in the time of the dinosaurs and their environment.

Prestigious French technical and musical team

Hot party going on in 3D with Amadeus system.

Amadeus worked closely with sound engineers, sound designers, and artists connected with prestigious French musical, theatrical and research institutions including Théâtre National de Chaillot, La Gaîté Lyrique, and STMS Lab (Sciences et Technologies de la Musique et du Son), located in Paris, and supported by CNRS (National Center for Scientific Research), Sorbonne University, French Ministry of Culture, and IRCAM (Institut de Recherche et de Coordination Acoustique/Musique).

“The success of this project cannot be separated from the teams who designed, imagined, implemented, created, and composed using the products and technologies that we installed. This project is a great joint and global success, a shining example of the rare ‘savoir-faire’ and technical skills that we have in France,” said Gaetan Byk, Marketing Manager at Amadeus.

“From the beginning of the project, we decided to create a strong team, including people with complementary talents, sensibilities, experiences, and careers.
Most of them coming from prestigious French institutions, including Marc Piera (Théâtre National de Chaillot), Jean-Marc Harel (La Gaîté Lyrique), Guillaume Jacquemin (Buzzing Light), Johan Lescure, Clément Vallon, and Thierry Coduys – who has acted as the sound engineer for some of the most acclaimed modern composers including Pascal Dusapin, Karlheinz Stockhausen, Philip Glass, Steve Reich, and Luciano Berio among many others,” added Byk.

Clear, audible and intelligible sound

One of the many Amadeus hidden – and aligned! – stacks.

Jean-Marc Harel from Paris-based Theater La Gaîté Lyrique was in charge of managing the on-site installation of the Amadeus speaker systems, in terms of rigging, safety rules, audio simulations, and calculations. Marc Piera from Paris-based Théâtre National de Chaillot was in charge of aligning the whole speaker system, using EQ and other techniques.

“Offering the audience a clear, audible and intelligible sound has been our biggest challenge, considering the high reverberation time of the venue (which is about 4.0 seconds without an audience), the large quantity of reflective surfaces, and the different types of speaker technology; including point source speakers, line array speakers, horn-loaded subwoofers.
We mainly worked with the dispersion properties of the speakers, rather than the EQs. Optimizing the positions in the X, Y and Z axis, as well as aiming the speakers in order to minimize the reflections have been a major part of the whole system alignment,” stated Marc Piera.

Amadeus also worked closely with its Chinese distributor, Guangzhou SignKing ET Co., Ltd. “Besides the history of dinosaurs, the experience of seeing the show is also designed to help the public find their love of nature and the world itself, ” said Wymen Wong, Executive Director of the Guangzhou SignKing ET Co., Ltd.

More than 180 Amadeus speakers

Here’s woofing at you, kids.

The speaker system is based on two main frontal ‘speaker antennas’ working on the WFS (Wave Field Synthesis) principles. The upper one features 8 clusters, each including 4 DIVA XL line array systems paired with 1 DIVA XL SUB.

The bottom antenna features 13 clusters, each one including five DIVA XS line array systems paired with one DIVA XS SUB. The left and right side surround zones are covered by four arrays (2 per side) each one including four DIVA XL line array systems paired with one DIVA XL SUB. In addition, 32 ‘UDX 15’ point source speakers are used as top surround loudspeakers.

A quantity of 12 MAESTRO II horn-loaded subwoofers is used for low-frequency effects (LFE). The Amadeus MAESTRO II subwoofer takes a revolutionary step forward in subwoofer technology and design with a unique combination of both low-power handling capacity and ultra-high-efficiency with dual high-linear excursion 15-inch horn-loaded speakers mounted in a push-pull mode.
At the Beijing Stadium, only 12 subwoofers are paired with 2 Lab Gruppen C88:4 amplifiers offering a maximum SPL 155 dB at 25 Hz. The MAESTRO is the brainchild of Amadeus working with entertainment technology providers to minimize overall costs while maximizing the sonic quality and the tonal balance homogeneity for long throw and sound pressure level less than 50 Hz.

Eight Guinness World Records

No teething problem for the Amadeus installation. Colorful indeed!

The nine life-size dinosaurs represented include two each of Brachiosaurus, Tyrannosaurus Rex, Triceratops, Quetzalcoatlus, and one Deinosuchus.
The dinosaur robots were built over a 3-year period in a shipyard equipped to handle the size of the mechanical beasts, the Brachiosaurus is 13-meters – over 40 feet – tall. The design team included engineers from Germany, Greece, and China.

The show was produced by Mr. HE LiDe and his wife Mrs. HE Qin Xiaomei, who are renowned in China for creating the landscape spectacle ‘Impression Liu Sanjie’ as well as the ‘Shaolin Temple Kung Fu’ show which has toured the world for over 10 years.
“The Long Gone Dinosaur is a very important project in China, the Chinese government is boosting the cultural industry by supporting exhibits and shows like The Long Gone Dinosaur,” said Mr. HE LiDe.

“So many companies are making huge investments in the cultural industry. Just a few decades ago it was difficult to even see a movie in China, but now it is easy, and there are many entertainment choices everywhere.
The Long Gone Dinosaur show brings us a focus on creation and innovation, using high technology–all while selecting companies from around the world to work with such as Amadeus from France. We accomplish so much working together,” adds Mr. HE LiDe.

One of the many Amadeus hidden stacks.

“The project broke eight Guinness World Records with the technology we installed and the scene settings themselves, the huge projection screen, life-size robot dinosaurs, and several landscape features,” adds Wymen Wong.

Thierry Coduys along with Guillaume Jacquemin, Johan Lescure, and Clément Vallon visited China several times to create the sound design in accordance with the scenographer and producer’s demands, as well as for mixing and spatializing the whole audio content. The team combined classical music with hundreds of sound effects including rain, thunder, wind, storms, meteor strikes, waves, and many other sounds.

“We decided from the beginning to work with our own sound materials, which are based on our own original recordings, and then we enhanced them using different modular synthesis systems. A few parts of the sound material was recorded using Ambisonics recording techniques,” said Thierry Coduys.

Amadeus’ 3D spatial sound processor HOLOPHONIX mix

Amadeus Holophonix processor.

“We have been using Amadeus’ spatial sound processor HOLOPHONIX to mix and reverberate sound material, played from a Pro Tool HD sequencer, using highly advanced 2D and 3D sound algorithms designed at IRCAM-based STMS Lab.

The HOLOPHONIX setup featured a combination of six spatialization buses, each one running one of the different sound algorithms available, including Higher-Order Ambisonics (2D, 3D), Vector-Base Amplitude Panning (2D), and Wave Field Synthesis,” added Coduys.

The input/output matrix of the HOLOPHONIX processor allows the user to choose the rendering mode for each of the incoming channels. It natively handles 128 inputs and 128 outputs in 24-bit/96kHz resolution, but can be extended to 256 or 384 inputs and outputs.
The processor is structured around a powerful multichannel algorithmic reverberation engine. It allows users to combine several different artificial reverberations, homogeneously combining sound materials and fine-tuning the perceived sound depth. Reflection calculators allow the user to create several virtual sound spaces.

“The HOLOPHONIX processor creates an extremely advanced platform which is able to mix, reverberate and spatialize sound contents played from various devices using several different spatialization techniques in two or three dimensions,” concludes Thierry Coduys, Chief Technology Officer who was intimately involved in the creation of the HOLOPHONIX processor.
The graphical open-source sequencer IanniX was used to design and write spatial trajectories in a 3D space with direct manipulation of the sound and music score. The audio creation was encoded using HOLOPHONIX and then recorded on a 64-channel digital multitrack recorder/player from Tascam.

Selected audio equipment installed for ‘The Long Gone Dinosaur’ show:

Speakers:
Amadeus DIVA XL: 48pcs
Amadeus DIVA SUB: 12pcs

Amadeus DIVA XS: 65pcs
Amadeus DIVA XS SUB: 13pcs

Amadeus UDX 15: 32pcs
Amadeus MAESTRO II: 12pcs

Amplifiers :
Lab Gruppen FP10000Q: 18pcs
Lab Gruppen C68:4: 8pcs
Lab Gruppen FP14000: 12pcs

Speaker Management:
Sonic Emotion WAVE II: 1-unit

Spatialization:
Amadeus’ HOLOPHONIX Spatial Sound Processor with built-in sound algorithms designed at IRCAM-based STMS Lab
IanniX graphical open-source sequencer


More information about ‘The Long Gone Dinosaur’ and on Amadeus products.

 

Oxo Colorbeam 150 BFX, cute little wonder

About a year ago, Oxo introduced a unique little LED fixture that has been discovered by some lighting designers who have found this small and unusual luminaire to be a real champion for creating very nice effects at a very little cost.

I personally was completely captivated when I discovered it and I have been looking forward to introducing it to you. We can still consider it a novelty, because it still has some great accomplishments ahead of it.
First of all, and although we usually do not start by presenting a product from this point of view, it is essential to set the scene: the Colorbeam 150 BFX costs €189 (list price) excluding VAT, in other words it is beyond economical.

It owes its low price to a simple design (we would almost say “simplistic” if we weren’t afraid that it would be interpreted as pejorative). It is nonetheless well designed, with components that meet the standards for a lightweight but professional-level product. It is also – and above all – a luminaire designed to be used in large numbers.

What’s it for?

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Is it a “PARLED”? Not really. Is it an LED strobe? No, not really, it’s not that either. Well, only the lighting designer will know what he wants to do with it and the possibilities are fairly wide-ranging. It is essentially a small effect fixture.

A 40° RGB beam.

With a diameter of 20 cm, it is equipped with two different light sources. The first of these is a 150 W RGB COB LED surrounded by a large reflector (almost 14 cm in diameter), occupying the entire center face of the fixture.
This source produces a beam with a divergence of about 40 degrees and generates red, green and blue. It is surrounded by a ring of 120 white 200 mW LEDs operated in sectors to create static or animated effects. Each sector consists of a group of five LEDs arranged side by side and three levels “deep” concentrically.

Ring Effects and Color Effects.

How is it done?

The fixture’s housing is built to be very lightweight. Its sides are made of black extruded aluminum, and the assembly is held together by two plastic shells. One of these forms the back, through which is cut the air passage for the internal ventilation of the sources. The other one incorporates the LED assembly at the front and is fitted at its center with a plexiglass cover that protects the COB RGB reflector placed at the back. The aluminum yoke has two moving parts, allowing the fixture to be deployed on the floor and also allowing its orientation to be easily adjusted.

Menu display.

On the back, a small and very simple display lets you select the fixture mode, its DMX address, and configure some functions – such as the stand-alone operating modes with some built-in programs – with the help of four keys.

On the sides of the display is the connection system, with a PowerCON IN socket to power the projector, a 5-pin DMX input/output to connect the DMX signal, and a PowerCON OUT to connect several units to a single power supply.

The connectors and rear of the fixture.

Each unit consumes a mere 200 W, so it is possible to consider powering around fifteen units on a single 16 A line, if all your wiring is in 3G2.5, or from eight to ten units if you use 3G1.5 lines.

There’s not much more to say about the construction of the fixture. It is very simple, basic and cost-effective, but well made. The essentials are all there and it’s also very light.
You will nevertheless have to use caution when handling and transporting them, since they are obviously more fragile than indestructible cast aluminum, but the whole point of this fixture is to be very light (2.3 kg) and to slip into any spot – in other words, you have to be careful, otherwise…

Handling the beast

The BFX can be controlled via DMX in three modes: using 7, 11 or 35 channels.

– The first one, is a 7-channel mode provides RGB control of the color source with a dimmer channel, and offers control of the ring of white LEDs on three channels: a dimmer, a selection of macros and the speed of the macros.
– The second mode, which has 11 channels, offers about the same thing, but with strobe control on both sources: the RGB and the white ring.
The effect macros available allow you to light the different sectors in a wide range of static patterns, from the smallest 5-LED sector to the entire circumference of the fixture, in three radial tiers. The effects are available both in rotating and concentric patterns, sometimes providing unexpected “depth” effects, a perception of light moving around this ring.
– The third mode, en 35 canaux, with 35 channels, works like the 11-channel mode for the RGB source, but the ring is divided into 24 sectors of five LEDs (the ring is multiplied over three concentric tiers) allowing you to animate these various zones in a number of ways.
Now we’ve done the tour. Nevertheless…


Rarely have I been so impressed by a small fixture like this and I can think of an incredible number of possibilities for it. The average technician will probably see just one more gadget, while the lighting designer will see a fun and expressive tool to give free rein to his creativity.
We can perfectly imagine this kind of fixture, arranged in large numbers on a stage backdrop, pointing straight towards the room to create a multitude of colorful or graphic animations. That is the most obvious use… but every lighting designer will find a new use for it every day, in applications as numerous as they are varied. It would be worth it to devise a social network challenge “What did you do today with your BFXs?”, a sort of contest…
The white light ring really does have some nice effects capabilities. In addition to the obvious concentric rotations and effects that we can immediately imagine, we can make this source appear in different shapes, including fixed patterns with which it can take on a graphic aspect that is sometimes very surprising, and whose limits will be further pushed back depending on the way in which the BFXs are positioned in the scenography.

The 40° RGB beam and its projection capabilities.

The light emitted by the central beam is far from weak, and we can consider real illumination applications with this unique little fixture. Even just as a blinder, the effect is surprisingly powerful. As a strobe, it can even be formidable. The color mixing is more than satisfactory, even for very pastel and colors that are sometimes very “complicated” to obtain. The dimmer is clean.

We even tried to color a cyc with it… With three or four little toys like this, you can cover a very large area with a significant amount of light.

Colors on a cyclorama.

Jomo, the author of this article, with its new cutie tiny friend (not counting the doggie)..

While the edges of the beam are sharp and it would probably be necessary to place the units a little further away with a small frost to get a result that would satisfy a theater technical director, it is nonetheless amazing….

In any case, there is no doubt that for events, the BFX can be used to color decor, such as curtains, because it has excellent possibilities in this application. I could also see it being hidden in decorative elements to give them hues in transparency. In short, it can do a lot of things.

I admit that, at the end of this test, I bought some of these and they are already being included in several lighting projects that I am working on. Who’s next? Try it, it’s awesome.

More infos on this product page and on the Oxo Website.

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Significant Adamson inventory expansion for Poland’s Technika Kubacki

Technika Kubacki is a full-service live event and production firm based in Krzepice in the northwestern corner of Lesser Poland. Earlier this year, the company expanded its Adamson Systems Engineering inventory to better serve its wide and diverse customer base, which includes many of Poland’s best-known live acts and music events.

Technika Kubacki’s Damian Kubacki & ProAUDIO-AVT’s Tomasz Kwiecień

Technika Kubacki initially joined the Adamson Network in August 2017, sourcing a sizeable S-Series system from ProAUDIO-AVT, the manufacturer’s exclusive Polish distributor. That initial package included 24 S10 two-way, full-range line array cabinets and 12 complementary S119 subwoofers.

Adamson S10 stack of 4.

“After a long and detailed analysis of what was available, we chose to invest in Adamson. They have excellent products and the brand is respected all over the world,” begins Damian Kubacki, Owner.
“We’ve had our system out on all kinds of applications in all kinds of conditions with great results every time. The sub-compact S10 fits our needs perfectly.”

In early 2019, the company significantly boosted its inventory in order to deploy larger and more versatile systems for a myriad of applications.
Now, Technika Kubacki boasts 40 S10 and 16 narrow-dispersion S10n cabinets in addition to 16 S119 and 8 E219 subwoofers, plus a complement of Adamson E-Racks with Lab.gruppen PLM 12K44 and PLM 20000Q amplifiers with onboard Lake processing.

Adamson Blueprint AV software.

Kubacki cites Adamson’s Blueprint AV design and simulation software solution as another major selling point. “Blueprint is just so intuitive and easy to use, making system design and deployment very straightforward. The results are always crystal clear and translate seamlessly to the real world,” he says.

Headquartered in Krzepice, Poland, Technika Kubacki has been providing turnkey live event solutions for nearly 20 years both at home and abroad. Their experienced team prides itself on approaching each and every project with the utmost professionalism, from design to implementation.

“Working with our Adamson system is a pure pleasure, which is important because it’s been in such high demand,” says Kubacki in closing.
“We get pristine and impactful sound and even coverage from a lightweight cabinet that’s incredibly easy to rig. It looks great in the air and we get all kinds of compliments from satisfied customers, artists, and the general public.”

“We’re delighted to count Technika Kabucki as a great partner and strong ambassador for the Adamson brand,” concludes ProAUDIO-AVT CEO Tomasz Kwiecień. “We look forward to supporting them as they continue to grow their business with their newly-expanded Adamson inventory.”

More products information on Adamson Website.

 

Sixty82: many steps to success

On the Sixty82 booth at Prolight+Sound, you didn’t know where to start from. This young brand – created in march 2018 by Dutch ol’timers professional trussmakers and aluminium afficionados – was presenting a bunch of new and various gizmos, alu-luyah !


Dynamism and inventiveness from Sixty82 for its second year of presence at Prolight+Sound in Frankfurt.

For once, and as we can remain very close to the ground sometimes, let’s raise the debate and step into this review with… a modular staircase! I know this ain’t that “sexy” a product, but this new model will show you the “staircase wit” (easy joke) of the handful of Mad Professors gathered in Sixty82.

Good enough, we meet Alain-René Lantelme from Axente, their french distributor, with his PhD-style resplendent beard 😉

Overall view of the Sixty82 Modular Staircase once assembled. Notice – top of the photo – the essential and typical Dutch accessory posed on the riser and bringing you full rewarding refreshness once you’ve finished bolting the stairs together.

SLU : Hi Alain, what’s up… the stairs? (laughs or consternation, tick the comment you prefer here)

Alain-René Lantelme : That’s exactly what we’re looking at here, we’re unveiling a totally modular staircase here, obviously called Stairs-Modular, where every stair is exactly the same, and allowing, once assembled, a total maximum height of 1.40 m.

SLU : What is the trick, then?

Alain-René Lantelme : Simply enough, the shape of each stair, with clever flat sides with a patented angle, allow stocking only one type of mounting piece, and not making mistakes forgetting this or that “start” or “end” element. All the stairs can fit anywhere into the global assembly. More, the load capacity is superior to the one of a standard staircase.

Stairs-Modular from Sixty82, a (stair)case that works! Once tightly bolted, rigidity and load capacity are increased.

SLU : How is it manufactured?

Alain-René Lantelme : It is made of birch plywood, with a non-slip layer (with embossed print) of phenolic resin. You can also have the same finish onto the risers, and more, you can ask for black embossed finish, instead of dark brown.

SLU : And is it more expensive than the standard staircase?

Alain-René Lantelme : No, because as a manufacturer, we’re making economies of scale (litterally), as we only have to produce the same element over and over. As we’re referring to risers, we also present here a clever new accessory, it’s the Multi-clamp, used to hold together tight risers from different heights.

SLU : As we’re celebrating in 2019 the very famous Neil Armstrong moon sentence, can we say, too, that “this is a small step for Sixty82, but a giant leap for the rental companies?” (embarrassed laughs)

Alain-René Lantelme : Great joke, hmm, let’s move to something different… As you’ve seen on our booth, we’ve had a very active year with many new products, so let’s turn to the new 39R truss, a bit like the 40 Series, but reduced in size, as the section is rectangular. So you gain 25 % in lorry volume, for the same (very efficient) load capacity.

The truly versatile wallmount Hang-On support from Sixty82

SLU : Can you say a word on accessories?

Alain-René Lantelme : The Hang-On is an universal support for any kind of transversal straight elements, but it can also rotate if needed! It is available in two types of finish, smooth satin or granite satin which is longer lasting and resists better to occasional bumps or shocks.
The two finish are priced the same, it is only a matter of choice and aesthetics. The Hang-On can support up to 900 kg, it is an interesting alternative to the T-Joint, and you can insert it anywhere in a whole truss construction.

The Wall Adapter can be fixed in two positions, either like figured here like a “chair”, or with the tubes positioned upwards. Its design is quite unique, for instance the width is the same that the truss it can support, the clamps position is adjustable. It can be connected to ladder, triangle or square truss, in M29S-T as well as in M39R. Its load capacity can go up to 500 kg.

Let’s keep going with Sybren Dijkhoff, who is going to show us bigger and taller metal animals.

SLU : Hello Sybren, what is this proud cross between an elephant and a giraffe thats occupies a good part of the back of your stand?

Sybren Dijkhoff : This is the Multibase Tower, a much appraised concept dedicated to a lot of applications. First of all, it can hang nice and easy a Line Array cluster, but not only that. It can wind up by itself with a hoist, it can also be part of Roof Systems. The base requires only a 3.80 m x 2.55 m space. It is designed to withstand the rough seaside conditions, qualified as WS4 certified by the German authorities.

Two views of the Multibase Tower standing in full pride on one side of the Sixty82 stand.

SLU : OMG, what a flock of newbies! Can we mention some other ones?

Sybren Dijkhoff : In view of sporting events or concerts, as we just saw we can easily hang Line Arrays to the Multibase Tower, we also became very interested in LED screens hanging, and we designed the LED Screen Support (with some space on the sides to hang sound systems, if needed at the same time).
Last but not least, we can also quote the Roof Systems: Booth82, one man alone can set it up, for small stages, and of course the big Arc Roof, that way we end this up with an impressive new product! (laughs)

More information on the Sixty82 Website.

 

Sporting team for L-Acoustics: Gino Pellicano and Dan Palmer as Sports Facilities and Consultant Outreach

With increasing demand for concert-level audio in sports arenas to elevate the live sports experience, L-Acoustics products have evolved to incorporate greater levels of control and integration as well as weatherization to match outdoor installation requirements.
In tandem with these product developments, the L-Acoustics team supporting this thriving market sector has also evolved, as recently evidenced by the appointment of Gino Pellicano to the new post of Application Manager for Sports Facilities and Consultant Outreach.

Newly-hired L-Acoustics Application Manager for Sports Facilities and Consultant Outreach Gino Pellicano (left) with newly-promoted L-Acoustics Business Development Manager, Sports Facilities – USA and Canada Dan Palmer (right).

To create the L-Acoustics Sports team, Dan Palmer has been promoted to Business Development Manager, Sports Facilities – USA and Canada, after 10 years with the L-Acoustics Application team. He will be working in tandem with Pellicano, who is also based in the manufacturer’s Westlake Village, California office and now oversees all technical support for L-Acoustics’ sports facility vertical market and its client base.

Gino’s background suited to fit the L-Acoustics install application team

Gino Pellicano, Application Manager for Sports Facilities and Consultant Outreach, L-Acoustics.

Pellicano is also tasked with leading the company’s outreach to major sound design consulting and integration firms across North America, both to educate and learn from this key community of sound design experts.
Pellicano joins L-Acoustics from Powersoft, where he served as the amplifier manufacturer’s market development and applications manager for North America.

Prior to that, he worked as a project engineer for Burbank-based Electrosonic, following several years spent as an applications engineer for Eastern Acoustic Works (EAW). Pellicano has also previously held design/consultant positions at both Technomedia Solutions and SIA Acoustics.

“Having worked for manufacturers of both loudspeakers and electronics as well as several leading systems integration and consulting firms, Gino’s background is uniquely suited to fit the L-Acoustics install application team,” explains Laurent Vaissié, L-Acoustics CEO – USA and Canada, who announced Pellicano’s appointment. “His technical acumen combined with organization and communication skills as well as his strong dedication are the perfect match to manage our technical support for the booming sports entertainment market.”

New role for Palmer

Dan Palmer, Development Manager, Sports Facilities – USA and Canada, L-Acoustics.

“Dan Palmer, in his new role, will be running in stride with Gino to manage all aspects of this vertical market for L-Acoustics moving forward,” Vaissié adds. “Dan has been instrumental in supporting system integrators, end users, and consulting firms over the past decade.
As a direct result of Dan’s work, L-Acoustics is now recognized as a major provider of audio solutions for sports entertainment. Dan and Gino will lead the way towards an even greater outreach and support for major sports facilities in the US and Canada.”

L-Acoustics Director of Application, Installations Cédric Montrezor shares Vaissié’s enthusiasm for this new “sports team” of Pellicano and Palmer. “Dan has been with L-Acoustics for over ten years as a respected colleague and leader in opening new markets for the company,” notes Montrezor.
“As his technical counterpart, Gino is well positioned to serve the needs of our current sports facilities clients, and to reach out to the broader consultant community.
With the widespread adoption of AVB for audio and the popularity of our P1 AVB processor, Gino’s electronics expertise constitutes a valuable asset to helping our end users and clients optimize networking and interoperability for their projects.”

InfoComm Seminar

At InfoComm 2019 in Orlando, Pellicano and Palmer will both be involved on a vendor-neutral seminar titled “Players and Perspectives in Sports Venue Sound System Integration,” which will be held in Orange County Convention Center room W414C starting at 9:00 a.m. on Wednesday, June 12.
This panel session will present the perspectives of various designers, integrators, manufacturers, and end users involved in major sports stadia worldwide and allow attendees to learn about the opportunities and challenges for sound system integration driven by rising expectations for immersive, AV-rich experiences.

For more details, click on this “Browse Education Session” link.

 

Vari-Lite VL6500, retro-style and brand new

Do you remember good ol’VL5 or even VL500, both proudly boasting a turbine engine look? This very recognisable design is a cross-mix with the look of the brand new VL6500, to create the future creature from the brains of Vari-Lite.
Why say “future creature”? Coz’ this newbie is not yet included into the manufacturer regular portfolio, and is still under development. As we were longing to come back from Frankfurt with actual news about it, we questioned our deep throat contact Jean-Martin Fallas, Product Manager for French distributor Freevox.

First close encounter with the Future Projector issued from the VL range.

The VL6500 is an evolution of the VL6000 Beam, this big searchlight lookalike fixture. This shows a strong will from Vari-Lite to propose, in addition to being an efficient machine, a nice look and feel allowing this unit to integrate nicely into a complet lighting set-up. From the roots of the VL5 and the VL500, it doesn’t use again their rotating fins system, except for the linear Frost, as the other features remain well hidden behind the big ellipsoïdal reflector, already part of the VL6000.

Let’s have a deep review of its functions, now… Without stepping into details, as these are not all unveiled nor definitive, we quickly learn that the color wheel used until now leaves way to a complete color mixing system. Ths module also includes a progressive CTO.
The already mentioned Frost, shown on the Prolight+Sound booth, will stay in the definitive version, and widens the powerful beam up to 32° angle. The rotating gobos wheel is also present, but utilised more for aerial patterns rather than perfectly focused images, as this is not a Spot. Same for the Iris and 1,500 W MSR Gold discharge lamp, these will stay.

The global very masculine look will remain unchanged, except for some tiny details on the head. Same goes for the weight (less than 30 kg). quite puzzling (in a positive meaning) considering the massive size/dimensions of the unit.
We won’t really learn much more at the time of this first contact with the two first ever manufactured units standing in front of us. More modifications of additions to the features? Date of actual release? Actual price? Wait and see, and stay tuned to SoundLightUp anyway…

More information should be available anytime soon on the Vari-Lite Website.

 

Powersoft Releases Comprehensive Training Video Series for ArmoníaPlus

Powersoft, the Italian manufacturer of professional power amplifiers, has just released a series of training videos on YouTube for their best-in-class audio design environment software ArmoníaPlus. The hour-long set of tutorials comprehensively covers the new features that Powersoft introduced with ArmoníaPlus when it was released last October.

Powersoft ArmoníaPlus extensively used at Coachella.

Aside from educating new users on the software, the goal of these tutorials is also to bring existing users who were familiar with its previous iteration, Armonía, up to speed.

Powersoft ArmoníaPlus: linking speakers to amps.

ArmoníaPlus’s redesign includes a single window interface with four main views and takes further advantage of intuitive hotkeys and simplistic icons to allow users to move between functions efficiently.

Users can move through four main steps: Design, Config, Tune, and Show, each offering a variety of functions and flexibility for different scenarios, as well as allowing users to audition different speaker presets easily. The YouTube tutorials cover all of these functions, as well as new features such as Shading, which allows the interface to reduce the gain of loudspeaker limiter thresholds coherently, keeping the balance between elements even if the system is limiting.

Powersoft US application engineer Rick Woida.

“When we were designing ArmoníaPlus, we wanted to make the system easier to use and employ,” said Powersoft US application engineer Rick Woida.
“We also wanted to make certain that we were still supporting our users who work with Armonía and allowing them to learn the new features over time.”

More information on ArmoníaPlus.

And here is the direct access to the ArmoníaPlus video tutorials.

 

French prestigious location for Showlight 2021 Lighting Quadrennial event

The next gathering for this quadrennial event, an unique lighting colloquium organised for lighting professionals by lighting professionals, will take place on 22-25 May 2021 in the beautiful French town of Fontainebleau. The main sponsor for Showlight this time will be the 100-year old French manufacturer of followspots and theatrical luminaires, Robert Juliat.

The Showlight committee searched long and hard for a setting worthy of Showlight’s reputation for fascinating locations, and settled on the historic town of Fontainebleau which lies 55.5km (34.5 miles) south east of Paris.

UNESCO World Heritage Site

A UNESCO World Heritage Site and famous for its medieval Château de Fontainebleau, a royal and imperial residence for more than 800 years, and surrounded by former royal hunting park, Fontainebleau Forest, Fontainebleau is a picturesque setting full of characterful bars and restaurants which will provide a popular and entertaining backdrop to the main activities of Showlight 2021.
The highly-anticipated conference will take place in the town’s Théâtre Municipal, directly opposite the Château de Fontainebleau, where delegates can enjoy the varied programme of conference papers delivered by professionals across many lighting disciplines. A small supporting exhibition will take place in the theatre’s foyer and courtyard between papers sessions offering superb opportunities to network and exchange ideas with other lighting professionals. The event will close with a Gala Dinner announced to take place in a stunning location.

Call for speakers

François Juliat, CEO of Robert Juliat.

Being so close to Paris, Fontainebleau is easy to reach, with good connections to airports and Eurostar terminals. You can already put the date in your diary now, and get planning your presentation papers as Showlight will be putting out a call for speakers in the coming months. Demand is always high so book your place early. Booking details will be released closer to the event.

“We are very excited to be selected as the main sponsor for Showlight 2021,” says François Juliat, CEO of Robert Juliat. “Robert Juliat is celebrating its centenary in 2019 so the fact that we can welcome Showlight and its delegates to our country at this time is very special. Showlight is such a unique event, and Fontainebleau is a perfect location – it is an unmissable opportunity for everyone in the lighting fraternity who is interested in light.”

“We are delighted to start the build-up to Showlight 2021 with the announcement of another lovely venue and a great sponsor,” says Showlight Chairman, John Allen. “It is always a much-anticipated event and I know people will be blocking out those dates in their diaries as soon as they see this announcement.

Emphasis on sharing knowledge and enjoying the inspiration

John Allen, Showlight Chairman.

Showlight’s emphasis is on sharing knowledge and enjoying the inspiration and variety our industry offers in a networking event without parallel, and our delegates and speakers enter into the spirit of it from beginning to end.

Where else do you have the chance to become involved in so many ways, with opportunities open to everyone – delivering talks, networking, learning and meeting a wide variety of people from the most experienced professional to the newest students and innovative manufacturers?
It’s an opportunity for all to take a few days out from our busy lives to enjoy the company of like-minded individuals in a beautiful setting.”

Anyone interested should sign up to the new Showlight Mailing List via the ShowLight Website to receive all the latest news as it happens, including booking release dates, and keep your eyes on the press and the website for invitations to present papers and for student opportunities.

Those interested in exhibiting at Showlight 2021 and taking up one of the many other sponsorship opportunities can enquire at exhibit@showlight.org.

 

Buddhist star has a (singing) bowl with DPA Microphones

The clarity, detail and natural sound delivered by DPA’s d:vote™4099 Instrument Microphone has enabled producer and engineer Mr.Chan Pui Ching to record 30 Singing Bowls being played by Chinese artist and wellness guru Mr. Tsang Man Tung.

Singing bowls with DPA d:vote 4099 microphones.

Singing Bowls are ancient instruments that have long been used in Buddhist religious ceremonies to accompany periods of meditation and chanting. They have become popular with music therapists, sound healers and yoga practitioners who use their steady and harmonious sound to create a sense of calm and relaxation.

An impressive collection of Singing Bowls.

“To capture the sound and full frequency range of the bowls, it was crucial to choose the right microphone early on in the process, at conceptstage,” Mr.Chan says.
“We decided to go with d:vote 4099 Instrument Microphones because they could deliver the results we wanted. We mounted them in the correct location and they perfectly captured a balanced mix of the high and low frequencies.

”Tsang Man Tung’s new album, The Seed of Sound, draws on his years of experience with Singing Bowls, which he plays and also teaches others to play. For this project, Mr. Chanwas given an additional test because Mr Tsang wanted the album recorded live.

Mr. Tsang Man Tung, one of the greatest Bowl players.

“This is not the first time I have recorded with Singing Bowls, but it is the most challenging one because, unlike other albums, almost all of the music on it was recorded live and without adding any effects at the post production stage,” he explains.

“More than 30 bowls were used, each of which sounds very different to our ears. Each bowl has a complicated radiating pattern because the radiation comes from the different sizes of the bowls and the material it is made of.
”With the help of d:vote 4099 Instrument Microphones, the live performances given by Mr.Tsang were captured and 39 tracks were recorded over a period of three days.
The album has now been released and is relieving stress and assisting personal meditation among Mr. Tsang’s followers”, concludes Mr.Chan Pui Ching.

The Singing Bowls CD artwork.

More information on DPA microphones.

 

Luminex, the 3.0 Network

An exhibition like Prolight+Sound in Frankfurt keeps showing us major technological innovations in the field of intelligent lighting fixtures and controllers.
In the past few years the new moving heads have relegated the not so old Mac2000 models to light years. Literally, the functions of the projectors have increased tenfold and the astronomical quantities of parameters to be treated have cornered the manufacturers of lighting desks further into the ground.

The Luminex French-Belgian team chases the in-depth demos of their new Nodes.

The amount of information to be processed has been multiplied by 20 in 15 years, not counting all requests for mixing video, lights, backup system and remote console. If the management of these data flows between peripherals got organized after all, thanks to the genius of some major players such as Wayne Howell, inventor of the Art-Net, or by the sheer importance of some manufacturers whose own protocols finally prevailed (MA-Net, Kling-Net, sACN), the day-to-day reality is still terribly … obsolete.

The great inventor Wayne Howell. His legendary discretion does not prevent him from also being the author of three essential books: Rock Solid Ethernet, Control Freak and Light Bytes. He’s also a very active member of the organisation team and inspirator for PlugFest.

Put the blame on the DMX512 protocol, so robust and easy to use that it still represents the vast majority of projector connexions, almost thirty years after its release in 1990: actually the standard name in full is DMX512/1990. To understand the technological outdating of this system, it is enough to remember that the DMX was standardized and distributed at the same time as the old Videotex first machines, such as the French Minitel. Fortunately, the consoles have evolved.

For a manufacturer like Luminex, involved in finding solutions to improve and replace old standards, it is clear that the DMX is bound to disappear in the medium term. At the time of renewing their range of MK2 Nodes, the number of DMX outputs no longer appeared as an end in itself.

The difference now lies in the processing blocks, because it is obvious that the future of connections will be made more or less dematerialized via the Ethernet network.
LumiNodes are interfaces thought ten years in advance. Naturally, they’re able to work with current set-ups, but they are mainly designed to anticipate future protocols and adapt to the increasingly densified networks in type of venues.

The Luminex demo rack with, from top to bottom and left to right, a LumiNode 12, a Gigacore10 switch, a LumiNode 4 and the fixed installation Gigacore 26i switch.

LumiNode

Until now, wether it’s sending or receiving data, mixing multiple sources, converting to one way or the other, or triggering internal modes or programs, it all went through the DMX ports. And that was enough until now for those with limited interfacing needs.

The LumiNode 4 is the most versatile unit in this range. Despite its compact format, it comprises a display with multiple indications.

However, whether in fixed installations or large tours, network operators are now faced with complex demands, such as providing multiple sources to mix, be it light control, video control, stage needs and emergency lighting for example.
The requests might also be to manage conversions between Art-Net and sACN data, more and more often outside the consoles that manage this aspect only by DMX512 universes, and whose parameters are rather succinct (for the advanced aspects of the network).

In practice, nodes are often inserted just to ensure a particular process, linking them to each other. This is why Luminex has built its new nodes, LumiNode, giving priority to processing blocks. These processing engines make it possible to ensure virtually all its complex operations without ever going through DMX ports.
The completely redesigned LumiNode interface, combined with the new network management software, Luminex Network Manager, provides unparalleled work and convenient organization for secure network management.

The LumiNodes come in 3 main models. The first one, the LumiNode 2, incorporates 4 processing blocks and 2 DMX outputs. The LumiNode 4 comprises 6 processing blocks and 4 DMX outputs. The LumiNode 12 has 16 processing blocks and 12 DMX outputs. Another peculiar LumiNode, the LumiNode 1, is designed as a Digital Siwss-Army knife for the Network technicians.

Each node includes RDM-compatible DMX ports with full optical and galvanic isolation, in the Luminex tradition and wealthy habits, with a RGB LED activity indicator. A 2-port EtherCon RJ45 switch is also included, with link, activity and use mode LED indicators. A contact closure also exists for fixed installations (in the event of an alert or an external command, it will be able to trigger a lighting data state internally, or any other action, in a future update of the firmware).

To give a didactic example, Luminex presented on its stand a case study of data flow transfer managed internally thanks to its Processing Engine.

The LumiNode settings are always accessible by any web browser, using their management web pages. A more advanced software, the Luminex Network Manager, will be unveiled in the forthcoming weeks, it will also configure and manage everything, individually or in batches.
This upheaval in the Luminex range, whose milestones will undoubtedly mark a crucial stage in the development of the networks associated with show technologies, will see the nodes and their softwares officially distributed in June. To face the first industry worries, each LumiNode can be switched on while choosing one of its two firmwares, the active firmware and an alternate-firmware, hence choosing to follow or not the latest updates.

With these processing blocks, new management modes have appeared: the forwarder function enables the conversion of one protocol to another among the following possibilities: DMX (from any DMX port of the node), ArtNet, sACN, BlackTrax, an instant data capture or another processing block.

The nodes interface, always available on the web page, is completely re-designed, based on the software Offline Editor Luminex. The identical DMX output assignments are now easily completed just by dragging and dropping.

It will also be possible, in the future, to capture a data stream in the LumiNode and play it in case of data failure, or from an external command.
Backup procedures are also made possible, with source by source back-up or by each universe in crossfade changeover.

Processing block cascades allow complex conversions or re-routing, for installations that have to meet particular constraints. Finally, in control rooms where several consoles coexist, HTP or LTP mixes are allowed up to 4 sources, by universes or by addresses’ batches.

LumiNode 1

This node with one DMX/RDM XLR5 output is, by far, the tool that many network technicians eagerly awaited. With its single USB port for computer connection, it will allow, via a future software update, direct RJ45 connection to the “trunk” of its light network, to be able to manage all the switches and VLANs, thanks to the LumiNet Monitor or Network Manager software.

But it can also be used, with the power of its 2 processing blocks, to test and set parameters “on the fly” to light ensembles in RDM, without console nor complex system. Its sturdy construction, its 1 Gb EtherCon port, PoE power supply and pocket size are all designed to support technicians in all situations.
In addition Luminex has decided to lower its price to the lowest possible level, below 200 €. This commercial promotion made it so popular with many people who discovered and enjoyed the LumiNode 1 during the Prolight show, that it is already out of stock.

LumiNode 2

Rather dedicated to light installations, the LumiNode 2 is the smallest node in the range. Its format is intended to be hooked on the truss in theater or fixed to the wall, thanks to its hanging support.

It is equipped with 2 EtherCon 1 Gb ports with integrated switch, 2 DMX / RDM outputs with activity RGB LED and 4 internal processors. It comes without a conventional power cable, as it runs thru PoE power supply.

LumiNode 4

The LumiNode 4 is the most versatile in the range. In the half-U rack format, it perfectly complements the Gigacore 10 switches for all touring and festival kits, but can also be hooked up thanks to its M10 screwing hole.

With 6 internal processors and 4 DMX / RDM ports, a 2-port EtherCon switch and one of the LED indications, it will meet the majority of needs. Its main advantage over the LumiNode 2 is the presence of a real front panel menu with adjustment dialing jog wheel and a color indication screen, as well as a PowerCON or PoE power supply via one of the Ethernet ports.

LumiNode 12

The LumiNode 12 is the most complete in the range, comprising, in a rack-mountable 1U format 12 DMX / RDM ports, 16 processors and 2 Ethernet ports, with color display and configuration jog wheel.

The software is also able to display all informations such as the power consumption of the PoE devices, the status of the ports for the RSTP protocol, the connected AVB devices and their status, and the multicast groups registered on the switch.

Less expensive than the Node8 from the previous range, it is likely to prevail in all important kits.
Like the LumiNode 4, it has an array of LED indicators, and a choice of PowerCON or PoE power supply.


Luminex has planned a two-year roadmap to develop its software. It will first allow the administration of switches, then will come in the future the settings of the nodes, and finally the RDM equipment connected to Luminex nodes.
The revolution is now launched.

More information on the Luminex Website.