With such an abundant catalog, it would be tempting for Robe to rest quietly on its back-catalog. But it is bad knowing Josef Valchar, its leader and founder, who has elevated engineering up to the rank of religion.
By revisiting some of its flagship products, it has corrected or evolved part of its 2017-2018 offering, with in particular an almost waterproof version of its bestseller MegaPointe. The prototypes were presented at Prolight + Sound.
Optical treatment and variable white
Projector lenses have always been a headache for maintenance. These plastic round plates naturally tend to pick up dust or Glycerol deposits from the smoke machines, or even get scratched during daily handling. So Robe invested a million euros in a specific treatment center designed by a French company, and placed in the heart of its factories.
This 8 meter machine is inspired by opticians’ processes by depositing two specific layers before cooking at high temperature. The first tank covers the lenses of an antistatic coating and the second of a protective supplement.
This new patented Robe solution is now at work on the Spiider, Tarrantula, LedBeam and ParFect 150 lenses. Studies have shown a real barrier against dust and scratches, a decrease in cleaning needs and a gain in brightness between 1 and 2%.
A new version of the Spiider and Tarrantula will soon be available in white LEDs, to meet certain needs in exhibitions, architectural lighting and events. On this TW (tunable white) model, the four RGBW leds are replaced by two warm white leds and two cold white leds. This results in a CRI greater than 93 and a controlled color temperature between 3200K and 6500K.
Following closely the T1 Profile, this series of projectors dedicated to theaters and TV sets, the T1 Wash also highlights its multicolored LED module developed exclusively by Robe. This MSL LED source (MSL stands for Multi Spectral Light LED) is by itself rich in colors and hues and is made of RGBAL diodes. All of its red, green, blue, amber and lime components provide a 10,000 lumens light output for 550 W of electrical consumption, with an impressive color accuracy and a CRI greater than 90.
The color mixing management is proposed in three modes, adjustable at will: either in CMY or RGB, or with all the individual RGBAL channels, or by choosing out of the 237 pre-programmed colors of the DataSwatch filter, obtained thanks to the RCC algorithms, the Robe Colour Calibration.
The addition of a plus / minus green channel is intended for cinema applications, as is its new PWM manager (Cpulse Flicker-Free), particularly suitable for HD and UHD cameras.
Capable of working from 2700K to 8000K, the T1 Wash can simulate a Tungsten source at 2700K and 3200K. Its ultra-thin 18-bit L3 dimmer, its EMS motion stabilizer and its light or standard Frost diffusers make its beam fade in in an almost imperceptible way.
The neat optics comprise a 7° – 50° zoom with sealed internal elements to avoid deposits of dust or fog fluid residues on the lenses. A framing system with four +/- 90 ° motorized orientation blades and an oval “banana” indexable effect (graduated scrim) make it possible to modify the size of its projection zone. Available with Fresnel lens or clear lens (PC type), this silent 22 kg moving head will be used as a Washlight or main light on all shows where total mastery of color and beam are a priority.
This Robe new models’ overview ends up, once again, with a remix. Not yet of the cult Denominator, but with a waterproof version of the MegaPointe, the iPointe.
Faced with the many troubles of service/rental companies providers when dealing with outdoor conditions, especially with Beam projectors whose beams may burn holes into inflatable protection domes (!), several manufacturers have developed IP65 versions of their moving heads. Figures 6 and 5 respectively indicate total protection against dust and splashing water in all directions.
These devices are not immersible (otherwise they would be IP68), but they can withstand – whatever their position – water falls or dust tornadoes without damaging their internal components. The absence of dust on lenses or effects wheels is a huge side benefit, reducing maintenance operations to external cleaning alone.
To create its own IP65 recipe, the Robe R & D Department has designed in two years time an internal multi-layer system where specific filters and air pressure chambers are placed to repel fluids. If its appearance looks a bit like a prehistoric shell, the iPointe is almost similar to a MegaPointe, except its lamp power limited to 310 W, against 470 W for the original.
Changes also, and for good reason, in the menu of the device. The touchscreen is abandoned because impractical once wet, in favor of a panel of settings and the integration of an NFC chip. This allows you to configure the projector from any Android device.
Usage information or data from internal sensors are also available, in particular the hygrometry sensor to detect any traces of residual moisture that thwart the tightness of the iPointe. Despite its nested construction, lamp change or maintenance and replacement of gobos remain easy and fast. These details pointed out (pun intended), the iPointe remains an extraordinary machine, equipped with an impressive zoom of 1.8° to 42°, a HotSpot setting of 7:1 to 2.5:1 and two modes: Beam and Spot.
In addition to mixing CMY mixing, 13 color filters, a wheel of 9 rotating gobos and another of 10 fixed, the beast has a wide range of effects. Framing system emulator to make the beam looks like a rectangle, beam reducers, variable frosts 1° (light) and 5° (medium), animation wheel and, last but not least, 6 prisms on 2 wheels combining into 12 “Flower” effects. The iPointe also has waterproof connections to access the DMX, RDM, ArtNet, MA Net, sACN protocols, and can also be controlled via a Web server or a Lumen Radio CRMX DMX512 wireless solution.
More information on the Robe Lighting Website.
Text & photos: Tristan Szylobryt. Translation: Bruno P. Souchaud.