Danish rental operation Live Company made a massive investment in Robe Esprite and LEDWash 300X moving lights, together with a RoboSpot remote follow spot system, in March 2020 just before the pandemic hit effectively closing the live concert and event industry worldwide.
From left to right Peter Clausen with Mikkel Bedsted.
“We felt it was a bit like some ironic sort of April Fool’s joke,” commented Live Company’s Peter Clausen, one of the owners together with Mikkel Bedsted and two other business partners. However, they are extremely pleased with their kit, and the Esprites have been busy despite a challenging year working at a fraction of the normal pace as Live Company is lucky enough to have had a steady flow of work throughout the pandemic.
Live Company purchased the 22 x Esprites – with Robe’s Transferable Led Engine light source a great asset for any rental house – for Cirkusrevyen, Denmark’s premier revue show which is staged at a big top venue in Dyrehavsbakken, a northern suburb of Copenhagen. Live Company was appointed lighting vendor for the first time in 2020 having supplied the season’s chief LX and lighting console operator since 2017.
‘My Name is Greta’ photos are by Mikkel Bedsted
In 2020, due to a couple of important anniversaries, Cirkusrevyen lighting designer Malthe Haugaard, who likes working with Robe products very much, wanted to change up the rig, and was keen to try out the Esprites. Over the past four years, a variety of Robe fixtures – including Pointes, MegaPointes, DL4S and DL7S Profiles – have been used in the Cirkusrevyen show, and for the 2019 season, LEDBeam 150s and MegaPointes were utilized in numerous imaginative ways.
“This time we wanted a fixture with a wide zoom that could also produce punchy beams for the big dance production numbers,” explained Malthe, recalling how he, Peter and Mikkel had visited Robe at the Prolight+Sound expos in Frankfurt and Plasa London that year (2019), assessed the new products on offer and decided to go with Epsrites.
While the 2020 season was cancelled due to the pandemic – it has currently been rescheduled to run May to August 2021 with a slightly different cast, so the fixtures will still get their chance to shine! “We often use these trade shows as meeting places and melting pots for discussion and for assessing products being brought to the market,” comments Peter, adding that Robe’s Danish distributor Light Partner is also extremely proactive at demonstrating any new technologies.
‘My Name is Greta’ photos are by Mikkel Bedsted
“Robe makes very reliable and stable products that have a decent amount of longevity,” stated Peter, “the ESPRITE is a good example of a luminaire designed to be relevant for a long lifespan and deliver great value”. Live company’s Robe investments started in 2012 with LEDWash 300s to cover their work in all sectors and particularly for theatre and musical productions, as well as for their value as solid dry hire assets. Initially, they had three different Robe products in stock – LEDWash 300s, DL4S Profiles and LEDBeam 150s, to which 36 x LEDWash 300Xs were added plus the 22 x Esprites and the two RoboSpot systems for Cirkusrevyen.
‘My Name is Greta’ photos are by Mikkel Bedsted
The Epsrites had some work during 2020, including in performances of “Mit navn er Greta” (My Name Is Greta) a new work scheduled to play at the Aveny-T theatre in Copenhagen directed by Emil Rostrup, starring Karla Løkke and based on the work and achievements of climate activist Greta Thunberg.
Lighting was designed by Jim Falk who used seven Robe Esprites controlled by one RoboSpot BaseStation running in conjunction with a grandMA2 ultra light console. He needed a fixture that was powerful and flexible as the show design concept is based on digital scenery and a setup whereby one person could control several lights, so RoboSpot was a great solution, positioned in the wings by the fly bar control.
‘My Name is Greta’ photos are by Mikkel Bedsted
“Epsrites are a great fixture,” stated Jim, a freelance LD who is using them for the first time together with a single Robe SilverScan which is rigged mid-stage-centre above the main performance area. He wanted this particular fixture for the wide-angled reach of the mirror movement as the venue’s over-stage trim height is relatively low and observes that he can also see SilverScans being used similarly in much larger spaces.
Working alongside Jim on the production’s creative team is playwright William Lippert, sound designer Viktor Dahl, video designer Adam Ryde Ankarfeldt, set designer Jon Stephensen and costume designer Michael Nøhr. After a run at Aveny-T, the show is currently scheduled to play for three months and then tour around Jutland, although this might change as everything stays fluid during the continuing pandemic.
Italian audio manufacturer Powersoft has announced a further 12-month warranty on their renowned rack amplifiers for all customers who register their product for free to MyPowersoft, Powersoft’s online portal. This free extension brings the total warranty length, including the four years standard warranty, to five years.
As of the Monday 22nd of February 2021, all customers buying Powersoft amplifiers on or after this date will need to register their product on MyPowersoft within 30 days of purchase to benefit from the extended extra year warranty. All customers who have previously purchased a rack amplifier prior to this date, that is still covered by the standard four years warranty, can extend their warranty by a year by registering their product into MyPowersoft by the 23rd of April 2021.
Iacopo Vannucchi, Powersoft’s customer care and service centre manager, commented, “In the last year, we’ve all seen and experienced unprecedented struggle within our industry. This is our way of offering a helping hand during these trying times.” MyPowersoft is Powersoft’s online portal, in which users create profiles which enable them to take full advantage of their products and the exclusive benefits that come with the account.
By registering a product to MyPowersoft, users can check their product’s history and current warranty status. Users also benefit from direct technical and commercial support from the team, as they can request and track their product repairs.
Other benefits include access to the Power-Sharing and Comparison tools, examples of Powersoft designs, and webinar session access with Powersoft’s audio experts.
“We want to provide our customers peace of mind that we have their products covered for years from the first day of purchase, and we’re going to continue to do so long term,” Vannucchi said. “This extra year brings our product warranty for our rack amplifiers to half a decade, free of charge. This warranty is a testament to the reliability of our amplifiers and the trust we place in them.”
So Midwest, Inc. provided turnkey creative and technical services for Self Destructor, the new music video for rock band Chevelle. Executive producer and production designer, Robb Jibson, selected Ayrton Perseo fixtures for the video, which So Midwest concepted, designed, directed, produced and edited.
Focusing on science deniers and written before the coronavirus pandemic, Self Destructor is the lead single from the band’s upcoming, space-themed ninth studio album, Niratis (an acronym for Nothing is Real And This Is a Simulation).
“Coming up with a theme of a visitor from space carrying a glowing energy orb that would ultimately suck the band inside its energy, we back-tracked the story to come up with the script and the shot list,” says Jibson of the concept, which combines performance footage with clips of Chevelle on a night hunt for the spaceman.
Jibson chose a complement of Perseo-S fixtures for the project, the first compact multi-function luminaire with an IP65 enclosure rating developed by Ayrton for intensive outdoor use. He was impressed by Perseo’s output per watt and IP rating since So Midwest was shooting in late November in Chicago.
“We were able to run them off a really small and quiet generator,” Jibson recalls. “The Perseos could sit in the mud and get rained and snowed on; we could have many per circuit and deliver a ton of output with really crisp optics!”
The Perseos were used to create otherworldly lighting effects for the nighttime pursuit of the spaceman. “We wanted the forest scene to have this really volumetric vibe, smoke and light with the naked foliage creating these sweet breakups,” Jibson notes. “We wanted to follow the visitor as he hid the energy orb. Having this thicket of trees allowed us to place the Perseos roughly 125 feet apart, six to a side, and really illuminate the scene in a fun way.”
He reports that the fixtures performed “flawlessly and looked really great on the Sony FS7 camera with no shutter or frequency refresh issues like fixtures with crappy PSUs. I’m happy that Ayrton has a fixture like this in the market. Perseo enables you to do things that just a few years ago you couldn’t do without more pain, much more power and after-rental cleaning charges to the dismay of the production houses. “We had fun on the video and were excited that our touring client Chevelle enlisted and trusted us to handle this vital part of their image. We like to think we put a live production design spin on it,” Jibson says.
Josh Stone directed and edited Self Destructor with Rudy Schieder the director of photography. Floyd Dillman was the unit producer, Tyler Roach the gaffer and lighting programmer, Nick Maty the lighting tech and Josh Gordon the production assistant who was also conned into being astronaut #1. Matt Barker handled the post VFX and colour grading. “Matt Brotz of LEC – Live Events Chicago, the production company called upon to support this project, has been an earlier adaptor of quite a few products from us, and the Ayrton Perseo fixtures were no exception,” adds Aaron Hubbard, regional sales manager at ACT Lighting.
Deux T1215 ouvrant verticalement à 15° et en bas de l’array, un module T1230 qui offre le double, une façon très simple de couvrir verticalement 60° tout en gagnant un contour appréciable dans le grave. Naturellement 2 dB séparent les deux modèles avec 128 dB de SPL Max pour T1215.
It took three years of work for engineers at Martin Audio to imagine, calculate, model and finalize Torus, the company’s first constant curvature array.
For applications that typically require a throw between 15-30m (50-100ft), a full-blown line array is not always practical, optimal or affordable. Conversely, a point source solution may not be sufficient in coverage and SPL. Torus is a constant curvature array designed to fill that gap, combining optimised coverage, SPL profile and cost efficiency.
However, Dom Harter, managing director, said, “It is much more than just another constant curvature array. Torus was in development for three years in an exhaustive bid to further the acoustic concept and performance achievable.
Dom Harter le directeur général de Martin Audio lors du lancement virtuel mais pour autant officiel de Torus et Display 3.
“Typically, constant curvature arrays have adjustable horizontal dispersion but their performance can vary considerably in terms of tonality and effectiveness of coverage when different dispersions are selected.
Equally, many lack sufficient sensitivity in the mid-band frequency, critically important for voice projection and clarity. They also can suffer from comb filtering. Torus fundamentally addresses these areas and more.”
Each Torus cabinet is designed for a flexible horizontal dispersion pattern and this can be manually adjusted between 90°, 60° or 75° (asymmetrical) via the unique Dynamic Horn Flare™.
Une vue en détail du Dynamic Horn Flare alimenté par trois moteurs de 1,4” à dôme en polymère HT, un guide pouvant être réglé manuellement entre une ouverture symétrique de 90 et 60° ou bien asymétrique de 75°.
This not only moves and locks the waveguide but also adjusts the horn mouth, including the low diffraction termination into the baffle, to ensure correct geometry and optimal performance in each of those settings.
The Dynamic Horn Flare™ is moved by a rotating mechanism accessible from the front grille so is easy and intuitive, while leaving the grille design to be both smart and fully protective of the drivers within.
Un des quatre mécanismes permettant de modifier la dispersion et accessible sans besoin d’outil depuis la face avant de l’enceinte.
A vertical pattern of either 15° or 30° is achieved via two separate cabinet types: T1215 and T1230, respectively. These cabinets can also be combined to fit venue and coverage requirements.
Torus features a phase plug mounted in front of the 12” neodymium driver to increase mid-band sensitivity and allowing the crossover point to be pushed slightly higher before three 1.4” HF polymer dome neodymium compression drivers takes over.
Le 12” partiellement recouvert par une pièce de mise en phase, une solution intelligente pour obtenir du gain dans le médium et ainsi profiter de petits moteurs dans leur zone de confort pour générer un haut sans aucune coloration.
The sonic performance is not compromised even when driven at higher SPL, and a lot of very clean and undistorted high frequencies are generated.
Pour découvrir Torus avec un film :
Torus is also the first product to take full advantage of Display 3, Martin Audio’s all new prediction and optimisation software, and the second big announcement from the event.
Display 3 is set to be a powerful tool for both live and installation projects. It works seamlessly with Sketchup for sophisticated venue modelling, or allows for more simple venue and shape creation.
Martin Audio Une version bêta déjà bien aboutie de Display 3 !
Initially, Display 3 will natively support prediction and optimisation of Torus, with line arrays being imported from Display 2. Over time, however, Display 3 will incorporate all Martin Audio line array, point source, ceiling and subwoofer solutions for a complete self-contained system design, prediction and optimisation platform.
Et pour avoir un aperçu des fonctions de Display 3 en…3 minutes, cliquez ci-dessous :
Summing up, Harter said, “These two major announcements show both the resilience and the ambition of the company. Through the pandemic we had a proactive approach with the continuation of R&D investment and the belief that companies that consistently add value to their customers will have a brighter future. The introduction of Torus enables Martin Audio to compete in more applications and Display 3 will develop further to be a leading 3D design and prediction software that enhances the working lives of installation and live event professionals.”
Torus will start shipping worldwide from April and similarly, Display 3, still beta, will have a public release at that time.
Technical production and LED screen hire company, iMAG, has recently pioneered a state-of-the-art mobile Virtual Production facility, offering a 360-degree workflow, from in-house drawing team and rigging, to full LED set up controlled by Brompton Technology Tessera processing. iMAG has joined forces with film production company Treehouse Digital, which works with major episodic streaming companies such as Netflix and Amazon, as well as on films and commercials, for the project, combining their extensive experience in filmmaking with iMAG’s hardware, knowledge and expertise gained through years of working in high pressure live environments.
“The true-to-life colour accuracy and image bit depth of High Dynamic Range (HDR) is becoming extremely popular, particularly within virtual production,” says iMAG MD and Technical Director, Alex Strachan. “We had already invested in ROE Visual LED panels and Brompton Technology processing for our live work. Now, having purchased a Brompton Hydra measurement system, our entire fleet of LED panels is Brompton HDR-ready, which means we can offer our clients the absolute best in terms of image quality.”
iMAG’s system is ‘tour ready’, allowing it to be transported either in full, or to specific dimensions, to any desired filming location. The largest set up has been deployed at the Bournemouth International Centre (BIC), and comprises a 20m by 5m curved LED backdrop using ROE Black Onyx 2.8mm with a ROE MC7 ceiling for ambient lighting, all controlled with Brompton SX40 processors.
“Our aim is to be a one stop shop. In virtual production, every single element matters,” concludes Strachan. “There is a clear appetite for high-quality, lifelike visual content for the world’s major productions and now for smaller-sized projects, too. Our top of the range LED equipment combined with Brompton processing, and our flexible virtual production set up, means that we are ready to support any project, big or small.”
Martin Audio is pleased to confirm that the previously announced SXCF118 and SXC115 compact, high performance cardioid subwoofers are now shipping.
28 dB de réjection arrière à 75Hz et 140 dB de SPL Max pour le SXCF118.
The SXCF118 combines maximum low frequency output with exceptional pattern control. It features an 18” (460mm) forward facing driver and a 14” (356mm) rear facing driver, each driven independently by separate amplifier channels and DSP. Each driver has its own chamber with optimised bass reflex porting. This arrangement produces a cardioid dispersion pattern which maximises the front radiation, while reducing unwanted radiation behind the subwoofer.
The SXC115 follows similar principles and contains a 15” (380mm) front facing driver and 12” (300mm) rear facing driver, each driven, again, independently by separate amplifier channels and DSP.
Même réjection arrière pour le SCX115, 28 dB at 75Hz, et avec une réponse en fréquence quasi identique, le 115 rend juste 3 dB de SPL Max au 118.
Each driver, similarly, has its own chamber with optimised bass reflex porting. It is the perfect accompaniment to WPM or alternatively can be used with a pole mount for Martin Audio point source loudspeakers.
Dom Harter, le Directeur Général de Martin Audio.
Stated Martin Audio MD, Dom Harter, “We are delighted to actually start shipping these innovative cardioid subwoofers to customers.
Demand has been strong and our initial production run has all been allocated, but fresh order demand will start to ship from our UK factory from late February.”
Following the postponement of Showlight 2021, Showlight announces that a one-day Virtual Showlight will be held in its place as a temporary interlude on Tuesday 25 May 2021 from 15.00 to 23.00 BST.
The date coincides with the final day of the original event and the time has been chosen to best accommodate USA and European delegates, the night owls further east, and (with apologies!) the sleepless in Australia and New Zealand!
Virtual Showlight will host an online presentation of papers, each up to 30 minutes in length, from international keynote speakers, plus a live Panel Discussion. Q&A sessions will follow each paper with delegates able to message their questions via the chairperson.
The remainder of the time will stay true to the spirit of Showlight with scheduled breaks between sessions providing opportunities for delegates, speakers and sponsors to network in ‘breakout rooms’ where they can spend the time mixing and mingling with others, both socially and within interest groups, in a virtual way.
Virtual Speakers Wanted!
Showlight is therefore issuing a fresh call for papers to anyone involved in lighting – be they lighting designers, lighting directors, directors of photography, architectural lighting designers or associated crafts like programmers and manufacturers to submit papers ideas suitable for presentation in the virtual conference on 25 May 2021. Full technical support will be given in advance, so don’t be daunted by the virtual platform!
Showlight aims for variety, across topics relevant to all aspects of the lighting industry today. The Committee wants to hear about your experiences, your ambitions, your inspirations, your concerns, your successes and your failures. They are not looking for simple product promotion.
Typical subjects might include:
– Innovative and interesting designs – Unusual projects large or small – Solving the impossible – Your unique corner of the lighting world – The future and the past – where should we be going and what should we have learnt – Issues that are affecting our industry and how we work
Showlight is always on the look out for new speakers, so if you prefer to submit your ideas for the full Showlight event as soon as it returns, they are also happy to hear these – just specify on your submission if you are applying for Virtual Showlight or Full Showlight.
If you would like to become part of Virtual Showlight 2021 by presenting a paper, please send us the following firstname.lastname@example.org with:
– Name(s) – Company – Mobile number – Email address – A brief summary of the paper you are proposing – Is your proposal for Virtual Showlight or Full Showlight?
Please note: all papers will be considered by the Showlight Papers Committee, and if selected you will be contacted for further details, and with technical requirements and accommodation information. We look forward to receiving your exciting ideas.
Virtual Sponsors Wanted!
Sponsorship opportunities are available to facilitate this unique online event with the chance to host your own breakout room between papers sessions. Please email email@example.com for more details. Showlight was grateful to those sponsors who have already signed up early in support of Virtual event: Robert Juliat as headline sponsor, ACT Lighting, Inc., Altman, Ayrton, ETC and Robe.
Tickets by voluntary donation
Tickets for Virtual Showlight will be issued on a first come, first served basis. Announcements will appear in the press and via the Showlight mailing list as soon as the ticket desk opens. In the current climate, Showlight has chosen not to charge for tickets but to leave it to the discretion of the delegates to add voluntary donations, with all proceeds going directly to selected industry charities, including Backup and Behind the Scenes.
Full Showlight will return!
Virtual Showlight has been planned as an enjoyable day to touch base with colleagues and celebrate the lighting industry. However, Showlight also confirms, Virtual Showlight is a temporary solution only, and the full Showlight event will return as soon as possible.
“While a virtual event cannot match the magic of the original gathering planned for Fontainebleau, we are determined to maintain the spirit of this unique colloquium until that happy time when we can gather together safely in person,” says Showlight Chairman, John Allen. “Virtual Showlight is a temporary, yet ingenious and enjoyable, solution to the restrictions caused by the COVID pandemic which also gives us the opportunity to raise money for our industry charities. Be assured Showlight will return as a live event in its full and wonderful form once it is safe and practical to do so. Until then, we look forward to seeing you online on 25 May 2021.”
Don’t forget to sign up to the Showlight Mailing List (www.showlight.org), Facebook and Twitter pages to keep up to date with developments and be the first to hear when speakers are announced and tickets become available.
The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) is the world’s leading gardening charity and for more than two centuries, has been the passionate force at the heart of horticulture. The RHS inspires millions of people to get involved in gardening, whether that’s through visits to one of the four UK gardens, inspirational flower shows, or seasonal events.
One very popular event in recent years has been the Glow illuminations over the festive period. Illuminate Design, the AV integrator from Witham in Essex, is currently responsible for the lighting of the gardens in Wisley, Hyde Hall and Harlow Carr. In selecting the proper lighting products to illuminate areas up to 150 ha in size, the Illuminate Design team procured more than 500 spotlights from Cameo.
The Cameo QSpot 40i.
The main lighting component for the extensive gardens, with their countless tree and plant species, as well as various buildings, are the 280 Q-Spot 40i outdoor spots with 40 W RGBA LED. The team led by Illuminate Design Managing Director, Robin Shephard-Blandy, uses the spots to precisely illuminate objects and, when required, highlight them in radiant colors.
The Flat Pro Flood 600 outdoor floods with RGBWA LEDs act as the wide background brush strokes. More than a hundred Zenit wash lights 30 of Type W600 and 75 of Type W300 deliver even more power and flexibility. Illuminate Designs also found the perfect placement in the gardens for Flat Pro 7 and Flat Pro 12 RGBWA outdoor spotlights.
The Cameo Flat Pro Flood 600.
The Cameo Wash Zenit W600.
“A few years ago, we became aware of Cameo when we were looking for spotlights for fixed installation projects,” explains Robin Shephard-Blandy. “Cameo has always offered us something more than the conventional options. That’s why it was obvious for us to shortlist Cameo when we were again looking for a range of spotlights for temporary installations.
The Cameo range is very extensive and offers us almost everything we need, from the small Qspot 40i to the powerful W600 floods. We are particularly satisfied with the high light output and uniform color mixing. Spots, floodlights and wash lights are all used both separately and in the DMX network.
The Zenit W300 and W600 also come with the integrated W-DMX transceiver to illuminate small shrubs, art installations and even the huge redwood trees spread over the entire site.“ As a result of its past achievements, the Royal Horticultural Society has now extended the successful collaboration with Illuminate Design by a further three years.
The following products are used in the gardens of the Royal Horticultural Society :
– 280x Cameo Q-Spot 40i RGBA LED outdoor spotlights – 91x Cameo Flat Pro Flood 600 IP65 outdoor floodlights – 75x Cameo Zenit W300 LED outdoor wash lights – 30x Cameo Zenit W600 LED outdoor wash lights – 24x Cameo Flat Pro 12 RGBWA LED outdoor spotlights – 24x Cameo Flat Pro 7 RGBWA LED outdoor spotlights
Further information about the RHS and Cameo range of products :
Sensitive to the hiatus in the large-scale, live touring market, DiGiCo has designed the Quantum225 to be agile and flexible allowing the system to adapt to the demands of our changing world.
Specified with the new DQ-Rack with integrated Dante and you have a perfect system for AV installation and the demands of an AoIP networking environment. Alternatively specify with the MQ-Rack and get the familiar MADI connectivity for your touring infrastructure allowing Quantum225 to integrate with your existing infrastructure.
The Quantum225 includes 72 inputs channels with 36 busses + Master Buss and a 12×12 Matrix. There are four MADI ports and dual DMI ports for added connectivity, 8 x 8 analogue and 4 AES channels for local I/O, built-in UB MADI, optional optics and Waves SoundGrid, plus dual PSU.
Le DQ rack, D c’est pour Dante.
The Quantum225 also incorporates now familiar features from the existing Quantum Range including Mustard Processing channel strips, Spice Rack plugin style native FPGA processing options, Nodal Processing and True Solo. There is a 17-inch, full colour, daylight bright, TFT multitouch screen with the Quantum Dark application, seen before on the Quantum338, combined with 41 mini TFT’s located across the surface to provide unrivalled user feedback and interaction.
What is unique to Quantum225 is a custom designed, multi-purpose mounting bracket that attaches quickly and easily to the left-hand panel of the console. This can accommodate an additional channel or overview screen, a KLANG:controller, or be further expanded to fit either a laptop or a script particularly useful for theatre applications. The bracket can be installed at two angles with quick release to cater for all preferences or applications.
Le MQ rack, le M c’est pour…MADI !
The new compact, 6U DQ and MQ racks have been designed from the ground up specifically for modern application demands. They feature 48 mic/line inputs, up to 24 analogue outputs or up to 8x AES outputs.
Clever audio design allows the user to reconfigure 4 of the analogue line outputs to be either analogue outputs or dual AES outputs. This I/O flexibility and other configuration changes are managed from the racks very own TFT Configuration screen. Standard features included Dual PSU and 48k or 96k operation.
This framing spot fixture, equipped with an 800 W white LED source, is a practical, complete and cost-effective solution for the profile market. It has already established itself in the inventories of large international rental companies. Letʼs take a look at it!
The ERA of the high-power LED spot…
Martin Era 800 Performance
The ERA 800 carries the “Performance” moniker, which has always been Martinʼs trademark designation for fixtures with motorized framing shutters. This unit is aesthetically pleasing to the eye. Slim and sleek, its long head, terminating in a 160 mm diameter lens, is supported by a relatively small base that provides the Era with all the stability it needs.
There are two sturdy handles at the top of each yoke arm that work in conjunction with the handles on the base to provide a secure grip. It is so practical that we would like to find them on every fixture. On the other hand, as on all Martin fixtures, only the tilt is lockable. The unit weighs 41 kg, which is quite reasonable for a fixture of this power and size.
The connection panel.
On the base, the panel with the connections features XLR5 DMX input and output, as well as PowerCON True1 input and throughput link. As each ERA 800 unit can draw about 1200 W, we could consider using the power link connector for a second unit on a 16 A circuit.
The absence of an RJ45 socket rules out direct Ethernet control, so the fixture can only be controlled via DMX. Nevertheless, this is how it would be used 99% of the time…
Martin offers only one DMX mode. Thank you! Thank you Martin! With the ERA, we donʼt have to wonder what mode the fixture up in the rig is in… One fixture, One mode… Zen! Our ERA occupies 42 DMX channels. Channels that require precision are doubled for 16-bit control, and thatʼs it: this is a positive feature of the Era!
Accessing the menu.
On the opposite side of the base is the display with its large backlit screen and navigation keys, and a USB connector for software updates. DMX addressing, manual test functions, dimmer curve selection, component status information… everything is there except the possibility to toggle the display orientation by simultaneously pressing the two arrow keys. Here, instead, you will have to scroll through the menu, head upside down, until you find in the options the one that inverts the display. What a pain!
Underneath the base, the omega brackets and safety cable attachments.
The rigging system is a classic pair of omega brackets that are fixed under the unit with classic camlock systems. An important detail: Martin has maintained the same center distances on EVERY fixture of this type since the last century… If you lose an omega bracket and you still have an old Mac 600 or a Mac 250+ in a corner somewhere, you can recycle its omega bracket. It works! Thatʼs cool!
As the two brackets are quite close to each other, it would be preferable (if not indispensable) for Martin to supply brackets that allow an offset (they were one of the first manufacturers to have thought of this!). There are four dedicated slots to allow you to attach the safety cable wherever you want.
The derating does not exceed 4%, which is excellent.
With the fixture running at full power, we start by tracing the derating curve, to check the efficiency of the cooling system of the LED engine. The attenuation reaches only 4% after 5 minutes of heating and then stabilizes. This is an excellent result.
With the light output thus stabilized, and the fixture placed at 5 m from the target, we can start our illuminance measurements at the three usual angles: the tightest sharp-focus beam angle, at 20°, and at the widest sharp beam angle.
At the tightest zoom setting that provides sharp focus, we measure a field diameter of 1 m, which gives us a beam divergence angle of 11.5°. The angle of the beam can be reduced down to the 7° declared by the manufacturer (6.64° to be precise), but the projection is not sharp. So at 11.5°, we measure a center illuminance of 45,100 lux after derating (47,050 lx cold) which corresponds to a flux of 32,870 lumens (34,280 lm when cold). The intensity curve is smooth.
At our reference value of a 20° beam divergence, the center illuminance at 5 meters is 14,900 lux (15,540 lx when cold) and the flux reaches 35,420 lm (36,950 lm when cold). We observe a nice flat intensity curve, without hot spots, particularly favorable for beautiful and uniform projections.
At the widest zoom setting that provides a sharp focus, the field diameter reaches 5.1 meters, corresponding to an angle of 54°. At this beam angle, we measure a center illuminance at 5 meters of 2,160 lux after derating (2,250 lx cold) which corresponds to a luminous flux of 33,660 lm (35,100 lm cold). The flux remains almost constant (±1,000 lm) over the entire zoom range, even in a tight beam with the tested angle of 11.5° avoiding large light losses.
The dimming curve from 0 to 100%.
The dimming curve from 0 to 10%.
The light of the ERA
Our ERA 800 Performance offers a consistent and uniform beam. The distribution of the light is among the best of its kind. The flux is absolutely right. It is a unit that delivers a beautiful white light at 6500 K, with a CRI of 70, which is perfectly suited to most applications.
The zoom from the tightest (not sharp) to the widest.
The 35,000 lumens of flux at 20° allow it to handle some very serious applications. The optical system is particularly efficient, and we measure a zoom range from 11.5° to 54°.
The color mixing is really nice and any hue can be obtained without difficulty. Here, there is no particular bias or exaggeration, this is classic and effective. The blues can be deep or vivid, the reds are quite satisfactory, and the pastels are clean. The only precaution you need to take for an absolutely perfect color mix in the beam is to use a beam that is focused close to sharpness.
The CMY mixing and the concerns when using hues in an unfocused beam.
On a unfocused beam, we can rapidly notice the phenomenon of color flags entering a good part of the beam. This is not a fundamental problem, far from it. You just have to be careful with your beam choices if you donʼt want to be caught off guard. The linear CTO, which is rather yellow and very soft, is very nice.
The color wheel offers six saturated and dense filters (red, green, blue, orange, congo, and a very nice sort of lavender) that pleasantly complement the CMY.
The filters of the color wheel.
Gobos and effects
The ERA 800 Performance features two gobo wheels and one animation wheel. The first wheel has six indexable rotating gobos, and the second wheel has seven static gobos. They are really very cool, and diverse. Several types of “colanders”, a true “cone”, a “window” which could prove to be very impressive in the theater, the “Sonar” gobo – with its well-known off-center cones that delighted the many fans of the Viper – are also included. In short, itʼs a delight for texturing the beams or for projecting effects.
The gobos. The rotating gobos above and the static ones below.
The animation wheel adds a little something extra with its unlimited rotation of more or less parallel striations. As on other machines, the stripes only move up and down (forward and reverse) through the beam.
To supplement and enhance the effects of the gobos or simply to animate the beam, two different prisms can be applied. They provide either a beam split into four sectors or a linear array of six sectors. They are effective and can be indexed, but cannot be superimposed one over the other.
The two prisms.
Two frost filters – here again, either one or the other – allow for a fairly significant softening of the beam, with two different levels. They are progressively inserted and the final effect is quite pronounced. Personally I like them very much.
The two frosts.
The framing module meets all the current expectations for this type of feature. The insertion of the shutter blades can come as a surprise because the second (blade angle) parameter of each shutter starts with the blade diagonal to the direction of insertion, but thatʼs just because the parameter starts from an absolute zero DMX value that sets a maximum “negative” angle to the blade itself. In reality, once you get past this surprise, any positioning is possible, just like on any other module.
The motorized framing module.
High precision, an amplitude of movement that allows the entire beam window to be moved, rotation through ±60° for positioning in all orientations – and even a bit more – all of this is enough to create attractive shapes, beautiful framing and even striking beam effects. With a little frost, itʼs perfect. The sharpness is rough for two blades out of the four, but this is the case with all shutter blades that provide total closure. Nothing extra, nothing less. Overall it is an excellent profiling module.
Disassembly. Letʼs strip it all down!
The fixture laid bare.
The unit is relatively easy to maintain and disassemble for maintenance purposes. The head is enclosed by two large cowls held in place by captive, quarter-turn, Phillips-head screws (which are secured by small wires that snap into place by means of a spring-loaded lug), the yoke arms are also fitted with a cover on each side, and the lower part of the yoke is closed with two half-covers. The base is more difficult to disassemble.
You will need a Torx T-25 screwdriver if you want to carry out a complete disassembly of the unit. But thatʼs really EVERYTHING. The choice of the Torx comes from the manufacturerʼs desire to prevent the user from troubleshooting certain issues on site with his Leatherman. Well, personally, Iʼm not a fan of this principle… We have to spend so much time on the road doing maintenance on our equipment that Iʼm not happy with any approach that is intended to put a restriction on the user… Weʼre talking about professional equipment, handled by professional technicians, so tinkering with the Leatherman is not recommended, but hey… at least for the whole fixture itʼs the same Torx 25…
Inside the head, the rear section is occupied by the LED engine, enclosed at the heart of the cooling system. We can only see it through the big lens that concentrates the flux to the optical path. Four big fans (two bringing in the air and two extracting it) organize the air flow through the heatpipe radiator. The front part of the head contains the effects, with ventilation and filtering to ensure a well regulated temperature and a minimal accumulation of dust.
The output lens of the LED source module.
The rear of the source module with the cooling system of the LED engine.
Next come the zoom carriage and the focus carriage, before the 160 mm diameter output lens. The frost filters and the two prisms are mounted on the focus carriage. They are inserted from the sides – where they are parked in a recessed position – into the beam when they are in use.
The zoom and focus carriages, with the prisms and frost filters.
The range of operation of these effects is quite limited in depth, which avoids having to make a big compromise between the amplitude of the zoom/focus and the use of prisms and frosts… On the other hand, the frosts and prisms cannot be superimposed upon each other. But is this a real problem? I donʼt think so.
The space between the source assembly and the optical system from which the beam is emitted is dedicated to two modules, one with the colors and effects and the other with the motorized framing system. Both can be removed relatively easily, after a bit of sometimes meticulous disassembly, but quite in line with the classic methods of routine maintenance.
The CMY+CTO side of the colors/effects module.
The gobo side of the colors/effects module.
The shutter side of the framing module.
The side of the framing module with the control electronics.
The modules are very densely packed, but well designed. The maintenance of this type of assembly is always delicate, but in this case, they seem to be well studied to allow the cleaning or replacement of some parts without losing too much sweat.
And the parts not in the head?
The yoke incorporates, along with some electronics, the pan and tilt drives with their big and powerful stepper motors, but the interesting thing is that the access to the belts is quite straightforward. Replacing the tilt drive belt, for example, does not require any disassembly. The access is not obstructed by any structure or wiring. All you have to do is release the system that keeps the belt tensioned to completely free it and replace it.
The bottom of the open yoke. Above is the access to the pan axle.
As for the pan drive, it is more tricky, but it is nevertheless more accessible than on many other fixtures. When you remove the covers from the base of the yoke, you have access to almost everything. This is a very positive point, if only for inspection in case of problems. The base contains the power supply, the display and the board that handles the software of the unit…
Even though it doesnʼt feature any significant unique innovations, the Era 800 Performance is nonetheless an excellent fixture, befitting the current high-end market. A simple and complete spotlight with rather interesting price positioning, which proudly meets any demand for a powerful, versatile and professional profile fixture on a technical rider. Its 35,000 lumens of flux and its beautiful uniform beam are enough to bring everyone into agreement. Welcome ERA!
La toute nouvelle salle de projection et de mixage de Netflix à Los Angeles équipée d’Ultra Reflex.
Meyer Sound has introduced Ultra Reflex, a patent-pending solution for optimum reproduction of discrete screen channel audio on large-scale direct view video displays. The complete system for each screen channel comprises a high frequency component reflecting off the screen that is coupled seamlessly with a direct radiating low frequency component.
Le bon vieux temps avec un vidéo projecteur pour l’image et un écran trans-sonore pour permettre la reproduction du son.
Le procédé Ultra Reflex avec le « composant haute fréquence » dont l’émission est réfléchie par la surface de l’écran (en bleu) et les plus classiques renforts de grave et subs infra en radiation directe (en vert).
The patent-pending solution encompasses proprietary acoustical designs, DSP technologies and optimization techniques. The result is full bandwidth reproduction together with extremely low distortion, pinpoint directionality, and extraordinarily flat amplitude and phase response for tonal accuracy.
Un gros plan du « composant haute fréquence », en clair, l’enceinte en charge de la localisation d’un des L, C ou R au sein de l’image.
With Ultra Reflex, audiences throughout the viewing space experience accurate and stable sound localization, crisp dialog, high-fidelity music scores and powerful effects audio quality that ideally complements the newest image technologies.
Audio challenges have inhibited wider acceptance of larger direct view displays because, unlike with acoustically transmissive projection screens, loudspeakers cannot be located directly behind the visual image. Placing screen channel loudspeakers around the display perimeter compromises uniformity of coverage, stability of image localization, and overall audio fidelity.
The innovative Ultra Reflex solution preserves the audio advantages of a behind-screen system while also improving breadth of coverage for a wider “sweet spot” in the viewing space.
“The introduction of direct view displays in the cinema industry created the need for a unique solution for LCR screen channels,” says Miles Rogers, Meyer Sound business development manager, cinema & content creation markets. “Ultra Reflex is the culmination of prediction software, loudspeaker technologies, and the lifelong vision of John Meyer to create solutions for the most demanding audio professionals.”
For the initial launch period, the new Meyer Sound Ultra Reflex solution is paired with Sony’s Crystal LED. This synergetic arrangement allows early adopters to experience the ultimate in high-contrast, high resolution video complemented by leading-edge audio technology. The displays are installed and in use by leading companies and professionals across the world.
La dalle LED Sony Crystal de 518 x 274 cm ciblée par les 3 nouvelles enceintes Meyer visibles en haut de l’image et tirant dans sa direction.
Les plates-formes d’optimisation DSP GALAXY ™ 816 et les alimentations intelligentes MPS-488HP délivrant le signal audio et 48 V sur des câbles composites.
The first joint installation for the two technologies is at a reference-level screening room and lab on the Netflix campus in Los Angeles. Designed to replicate both critical viewing and audio mixing as well as accommodate VIP screenings, the room features a 17’ wide by 9’ high HDR-capable 4K Crystal LED from Sony. Proprietary DSP for optimization is supplied by a GALAXY™ 816 Network Platform.
The innovative screen channels are part of a complete Dolby Atmos® system that has quickly recallable snapshots for theatrical or 9.1.6 home entertainment playback modes. The balance of the system comprises a total of 37 self-powered Meyer Sound cinema loudspeakers, including HMS Series lateral and overhead surround loudspeakers bolstered by USW-210P™ subwoofers for surround bass management and X-400C™ cinema subwoofers with VLFC™ very low frequency control elements for bass management and LFE.
A short film to better understand how Ultra Reflex works:
Hosted by Ana Brenda Contreras, Victor Manuelle and Yalitza Aparicio, the 21st Latin Grammy Awards were celebrated in late November to honour the cream of the Latin music scene. This year saw a rather different format from the usual star-studded occasion due to the dictates of the COVID-19 pandemic: to ensure the safety of the artists and the production team, the nominees were showcased to the world in a remote, live broadcast by Univision from the American Airlines Arena in Miami, with breakout performances streamed from other cities throughout Latin America.
Despite the lack of a live audience, this year’s performances were no less glamorous, and the stellar line up – which included the likes of Bad Bunny, Camilo, Kany García, J Balvin, Jesse & Joy, Natalia Lafourcade, Ricky Martin, Fito Páez and Carlos Vives all competing for Album Of The Year – were presented in their best light, bringing some much-needed joy and warmth to its worldwide viewing audience. The Awards show’s lighting designer and director, Tom Kenny, operating from the Miami base, chose to enhance the appearance of the artists with the elegance and subtleties of a number of Robert Juliat Dalis 860 LED fixtures.
Nine of the 8-colour LED battens were arranged at ground level in a horseshoe configuration bordering the front of the performing area, from where they were used as footlights and for low level front lighting.
With ‘Music Makes Us Human’ as the evening’s theme, Kenny used the Dalis fixtures to bring a warmth and depth to the performers’ faces; Ricky Martin’s set included a duet with Carla Morrison with whom he performed Recuerdo, followed by his own solo performance of the award-nominated song, Tiburones. “The Latin Grammys draws a massive TV and online presence so every artist is on top form and really looking for the high standards the production brings every year,” says Kenny. “Ricky Martin has always been passionate about his performance and puts a lot of energy and rehearsal into his songs. We introduced the Robert Juliats Dalis 860 to him on previous shows, so I had them ready for him at this year’s mega show in Miami on November 19th.
“The warmth, shape and colour temperature that these units produce not only soften and gave him a beautiful glow, but the ‘old-world-meets-new’ look of each fixture added to the theatrics of the song. He loved them so much he didn’t want to stray too far from their beautiful aura!” The Robert Juliat Dalis 860 fixtures were supplied to the Latin Grammy Awards by PRG.
More information about the complete Dalis family of LED fixtures and all Robert Juliat luminaires can be found on the Robert Juliat website
Sennheiser plans to focus on its Professional business in future and aims to secure a partnership to strengthen its market position in Consumer Electronics. With this decision, Sennheiser is consistently continuing on its course to build greater independence for its business units.
Daniel and Andreas Sennheiser
“In our Professional and Consumer Divisions, we have four Business Units in total: Pro Audio, Business Communications, Neumann and Consumer Electronics. In all of these areas we see great potential for growth. At the same time, they are characterized by different customer groups, customer requirements, product life cycles and market dynamics,” says Andreas Sennheiser, Co-CEO of Sennheiser.
“To be best able to exploit the potential in each of these markets, we are concentrating our own resources on the three business areas in the Professional division and are looking for a strong partner to invest in our Consumer business,” adds Daniel Sennheiser, Co-CEO of Sennheiser. Talks with potential partners will start shortly.
The Evolution Wireless G4 series.
Strengthen the market position and increase visibility in the Consumer business
“Our products are known for the best sound and for delivering a unique sound experience. These crucial aspects are at the heart of the purchasing decision for our customers in the Premium Headphones, Enhanced Hearing, Audiophile and Soundbars segments,” explains Daniel Sennheiser, Co-CEO. “These are the strengths that we want to work with a partner to build upon.” In parallel, it is important to increase visibility in the market in order to be able to achieve sustainable growth.
Focus on development of Professional business
The Team Connect Ceiling 2 capture and audio management system.
A partnership for the Consumer business enables Sennheiser to place its focus and resources on strengthening its Pro Audio, Business Communications and Neumann business units. “Whether in the studio, concert hall, conference room or auditorium in the Pro world, Sennheiser stands for a superior audio experience, the highest reliability and the best customer understanding,” says Andreas Sennheiser.
Here, the audio specialist plans to independently invest in its sound competence as well as in its market presence and visibility. This will enable Sennheiser to continue to grow at an above-average rate and to expand its strong position in the global market. The business communications market in particular offers significant opportunities for growth that Sennheiser intends to capture.
Repositioning for a successful future
“All business units are to emerge strengthened from the planned repositioning. With a strong partner at our side to invest in our Consumer business, we will be even better equipped to play to our strengths and to continue to bring the benefit of these strengths to our customers,” says Daniel Sennheiser. Andreas Sennheiser adds: “For over 75 years, Sennheiser has stood for excellent technology and unique audio experiences. In doing so, we always focus on the needs of our customers. And we will continue to do so in the future.’
Conclusion by Andreas and Daniel Sennheiser
Dear customers, partners and friends,
A partnership for the Consumer business enables us to focus our own energy and resources on strengthening the Pro Audio, Business Communications and Neumann business units. This means that new possibilities, opportunities and ideas for the future are continuously emerging. For Sennheiser, this means that we must continue to develop and adapt. As a family business, we have to be agile and flexible and make decisions for the future.
This is part of our entrepreneurial responsibility.
Helsinki’s Visual Monkeys design agency ramped up the visuals for Finland’s popular The Masked Singer TV show using Hippotizer Montane+ RTX and Karst+ Media Servers in December.
Visual Monkeys’ founder Mikko ‘Bob’ Enäkoski, who says he’s on a mission to bring stadium looks to Finnish TV, designed the show’s set and visual set up and was looking for a solution to create what he likes to call ‘a kick ass show’. This passion led him to the Hippotizer Media Servers.
“We are a team of around 20 people at Visual Monkeys and we like to deliver,” says Enäkoski. “For this season of Finland’s The Masked Singer, we went all-out, with pyrotechnics and scaled-up video content.
Some of the biggest challenges we face are getting the balance right with the lights and the video, and ensuring the focus stays on the performer, backed up by a brilliant visual setup. That’s where Hippotizer came in, controlled by our main video operator, Lassi ‘Brandon’ Seppä.”
During the live shows, Seppä controlled both the Montane+ RTX and the Karst+ via a grandMA2. He says using a lighting console for control of the Hippotizers is an “excellent combination to help adjust parameters like the colours, brightness and effects on the fly, and in an instant”.
“Hippotizer gives us a simple, customized, fast access to all parameters via a lighting console or ZooKeeper, making my life much easier on a demanding show like this,” says Seppä. “ZooKeeper really gives a good overview of all parameters at once, and using Hippotizer is great when I’m working on a cue-based show.”
Seppä took advantage of Hippotizer’s suite of tools, including VideoMapper, PixelMapper, and HippoSnapper. “VideoMapper on layers really helped me to map HD video content to the custom-sized video screens,” he says. “HippoSnapper is a helpful tool to combine layers and create instant stills content. Overall, Hippotizer gives me customisation, flexibility and control.”
Enäkoski adds: “We were the first visuals team to work on The Masked Singer Finland, so we had mostly free rein to create how we wanted – we looked at the show visuals in other countries and thought, ‘how can we do this better?’ We listened to the client, designed the show and I think it looked really great. Hippotizer is our go-to for visual control and we’re happy.” A host of Finnish celebrities donned masks to take part in Season Two of the show. The eventual winner was heavy metal singer, Marco Hietala, who sang the Backstreet Boys classic ‘Everybody (Backstreet’s Back)’ to scoop the prize.
The new chapel with the two hangs of 16-deep O-Line.
When the First Pentecostal Church in North Little Rock, Arkansas, decided to upgrade its sound system three years ago it became the world’s first adopter of Martin Audio’s then new Wavefront Precision Compact and Mini optimised arrays.
Fast forward to the present and the Church has added a new mid-size chapel on its campus for multipurpose use and brought in a new sound contractor. However, it has kept faith in the British brand that has served the community so well in the main church. This time the PA needed to reinforce events that were “too large for our rotunda space, too small for our sanctuary, and not quite casual enough to be held in our Great Hall,” according to the Church’s Director of Communications, Zachary Ward.
With aesthetics a prime consideration, the solution was found in the House of Worship favourite, the discreet O-Line column micro array, specified and installed by Nashville-based Spectrum Sound.
One O-Line without his grill. 16 box equals 102 db of sensitivity.
This provides balanced coverage for the 232 main floor seats and further 48 seats in the balcony. Ward confirms that brand continuity was based on the “exemplary” Wavefront Precision performance in the main space. However, the decision was not taken before carefully scanning the market to compare options. “We considered multiple brands and models but ultimately it was Spectrum Sound who, after seeing the space, recommended we take a look at O-Line, a product which none of us had even heard about at that point.”
16 O-Line hang with a 1 box resolution. In Red is close to the hang, Yellow the FOH and green is distant. In black the rejection behind the speakers.
He added, “The new room presents an auditory challenge as the floors are of tile and the ceiling is more than 40 feet high, creating quite a reverberant space. Added to that is the need to reliably produce clear, intelligible speech during a sermon or dinner involving a speaker while also being capable of producing rich, vibrant music and vocals during a time of worship. We feel that the Martin Audio system accomplishes these demands well.”
To achieve this, Spectrum has provided two hangs of 16-deep O-Line, run in 2-box resolution from a pair of Martin Audio iKON iK81 amplifiers, with a pair of white floor-mounted SX218 subs placed unobtrusively between a couple of large floor-to-ceiling columns, powered by an iK42.
The SX218 sub.
Spectrum Sound sales manager, Ken DeBelius, who had arranged the original presentation, gave his reasons for recommending O-Line. “Although there are a number of column-style small-format line-source arrays using 2” or 3” drivers, no other brands can match this, especially when considering the overall vertical coverage scalability required in this project. “O-Line is unique, because it allows the flexibility of a traditionally curved larger line source, but in a package that fits a space like this chapel much better aesthetically. And adding Martin Audio’s Wavefront Precision magic really optimises what is possible as to the acoustical radiation from such a compact solution.”
Operating in different live touring and installation sectors, the HoW market segment forms a major part of Spectrum Sound’s Systems Integration division. However, the FPCNLR project represented not only their first deployment of O-Line but their first Martin Audio installation experience. Prior to installation they pre-assembled the systems in their workshops and flew them at trim, to test performance. “We were happy with the sonic result right at the outset and adding the dual 18” subs made it a truly full range system,” DeBelius continued.
However, his team were mindful of the considerable acoustic challenges. “The mostly hard, reflective architectural surfaces provide an obvious challenge for any system for amplified speech or music. This system needed to have as precise polar radiation as possible, to keep the overall room reverberation managed and under control.”
The other challenge was presented by the separate upper balcony seating section. “I was loath to add a set of delay fill loudspeakers, once again with aesthetic considerations being a major concern. Thus, the main arrays needed to be capable of projecting up into the balcony, and this they did extremely well.”
Tuning and design were carried out via Martin Audio’s proprietary Display software, using construction drawings and on-site measurements. In addition to powering the main system, the spare channels on the 4-channel amplifier were wired with stage connectivity for use with passive floor monitors. “For now, the system is being driven analogue by a small mixing console, but later on with the upgrade to a larger console they can drive the system via Dante directly into the iKON amplifiers,” states Ken DeBelius.
The 8-channel Power Amplifier iK81.
In summary, the installer said that Spectrum had managed to meet not only the aesthetic requirement with O-Line but also delivered listeners with “good direct-to-reverberant ratios for their live amplified program content. The small size, combined with the controlled directivity of the compact Martin Audio O-Line, provided the perfect solution to solve both of these challenges for this room. That, plus the fidelity and overall sonic character of these arrays were an added bonus,” he exclaimed.
Zachary Ward was equally effusive. “We are extremely satisfied with the performance of O-Line. With such a unique room, including 42ft-high ceilings and several stained-glass windows reaching more than 28ft tall, O-Line provides even coverage and clarity while accomplishing our main goal, preserving the overall aesthetic of the room.”