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ProAVLMEA May–June 2021 MICA (P) 010/05/2021

LIVE SOUND

LIGHTING

RECORDING

INSTALLATION

AV

BROADCAST

POSTPRODUCTION

May–June 2021

INFINITE POSSIBILITIES Inside the largest digital art gallery in the Middle East

CONTROLLING QUSEC DUT SETS UP FOR SUCCESS

OPTIMAL AUDIO

The ins and outs of Focusrite’s newest brand

www.proavl-mea.com

Singapore: MICA (P) 010/05/2021

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Contents Volume 18 Issue Three May–June 2021

Editor’s note

NEWS NEWS Vitec acquires Exterity, CTME illuminates Al Wasl Dome with Christie

4

APPOINTMENTS Paul Hadfield joins A4IME, Steven Simpson moves to Datapath

26

SPECIAL REPORT The changing relationship between Crestron and TIG

28

SPECIAL REPORT Shure discusses how businesses can prepare for virtual conferencing 30

Email: sluckhurst@proavl-mea.com

FEATURES

Such is still the changing nature of pandemic-inflicted business that new dates for CABSAT 2021 have only just appeared in my inbox as I sit down to write this introduction – less than a month before the show was due to open! The struggle is still so very real. CABSAT’s last-minute date change exemplifies the challenge of future planning. Even the World Economic Forum’s report on global risks published back in January 2020 concluded the likelihood of an infectious disease outbreak or instability in the global energy market to being “relatively unlikely”. Both ended up wreaking havoc on our lives within weeks of the report’s publication. But as Ramadan concludes, a new and brighter period beckons for the Middle East. There’s much to look forward to over the next few years and the events industry is already starting to see some light at the end of the tunnel. Focus has shifted away from niche virtual opportunities to rekindling that live magic, and big names are starting to line back up. The cover feature in this edition of Pro AVL MEA is Infinity de Lumières, and I’d encourage local residents to head down to Dubai Mall and visit when the opportunity arises. Explored on page 36, the venue is the largest digital art gallery in the Middle East, and truly offers a brand-new perspective and appreciation of the genre. The experience is akin to trading your smartphone screen for the full cinema experience. Elsewhere in this issue, we find out more about the Focusrite’s Group new commercial audio brand, Optimal Audio, discuss future changes at Sennheiser with the brothers behind the German audio brand, and explore Riedel’s pioneering work in decentralised remote production for live events.

CONTROLLING THE OUTCOME Techno Q champions versatility with Yamaha’s AFC 32 LESS IS MORE FBT powers Istanbul’s Goose No 25

34

COVER: The biggest digital arts gallery in the Middle East gets ready to open

36

SET FOR SUCCESS DUT brings its video technology department into the real world 38 ART OF NOISE South Africa’s first Genelec 8351Bs head to Good Noise Productions 40

BUSINESS LETTER FROM AMERICA Dan Daley ponders the music industry’s “new normal”

42

LETTER FROM EUROPE Phil Ward looks at Brexit’s effect on touring and haulage

42

COMPANY PROFILE The Focusrite Group launches its seventh brand – Optimal Audio

44

COMPANY PROFILE Creativity is key for South African special events company Derwalt 46 TECHNOLOGY Riedel and RRN embark on fully decentralised remote production

48

NEW PRODUCTS The industry’s most comprehensive product news

51

ANALYSIS A year of change for Sennheiser prompts a new future focus

74

inside 4

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Contacts PRODUCTION MANAGER Adrian Baker T: +44 1892 676280

GENERAL MANAGER Richard Lawn T: +44 1892 676280

ADVERTISING DIRECTOR Sue Gould T: +44 1892 676280

CONTRIBUTING EDITOR Caroline Moss T: +44 1892 676280

EDITORIAL COORDINATOR Karen Wallace T: +44 1892 676280

rlawn@proavl-mea.com

sgould@proavl-mea.com

cmoss@proavl-mea.com

kwallace@proavl-mea.com

abaker@proavl-mea.com

DIGITAL MEDIA MANAGER Nick Smith T: +44 1892 676280

VIDEO EDITOR Chris Yardley T: +44 1892 676280

SOCIAL MEDIA COORDINATOR

SALES ASSOCIATE Carolyn Valliere T: +1 562 746 1790

CIRCULATION Marne Mittelmann F: +65 6491 6588

cvalliere@proavl-mea.com

circulation@proavl-mea.com

nsmith@proavl-mea.com

cyardley@proavl-mea.com

Jessica Ubhi T: +44 1892 676280 jubhi@proavl-mea.com

COVER: Infinity des Lumières PRINTER: Times Printers Singapore LICENCES: Singapore: MCI (P) 010/05/2021 All rights reserved. No part of this magazine may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording or by any information storage and retrieval system, without prior permission in writing from the copyright owners.

www.proavl-mea.com

@ProAVLCentral

PUBLISHED BY: 17 Upper Grosvenor Road, Tunbridge Wells, Kent TN1 2DU, UK

@ProAVLMEAMagazine May–June 2021 PRO AVL MEA 3

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NEWS

Vitec creates global IPTV and digital signage powerhouse in Exterity acquisition WORLD

Vitec has announced the strategic acquisition of Exterity Ltd, signalling the French developer’s intention to accelerate growth and strengthen its leadership position, with natural technology and customer synergies between the two companies. As a global leader in IP video streaming solutions for broadcast, military and government, corporate, sports and entertainment venues, Vitec can now extend its reach into new geographies, market verticals and partners. “Exterity is a respected IPTV and digital signage leader around the globe,” commented Vitec CEO, Philippe Wetzel. “As a market leader, they

have developed a robust IP video platform for both hardware and software that has been very successful, particularly in the enterprise and accommodation markets across Europe, the Middle East and Asia Pacific. Exterity’s engineering excellence, global geographic distribution and complementary business focus was the primary motivation for Vitec to make this acquisition. The combined entity will be the leading IPTV and digital signage

Colin Farquhar, Exterity CEO

provider for corporate, government, military, venues, hospitality and broadcast customers.” Founded 20 years ago in Scotland, Exterity has experienced phenomenal growth during the past five years, extending its global reach with offices in London, New York, Paris, Johannesburg, Dubai, Riyadh, Singapore and Sydney. CEO Colin Farquhar will remain a central part of the leadership team of the combined company. “In bringing together Vitec and Exterity, we will be able to offer a wider range of best-in-class products, solutions and services to our customers,” commented Farquhar on the acquisition. “Vitec’s product portfolio, market strength and company culture are the perfect fit for this next chapter in our IPTV growth and I have complete confidence that we will be able to grow stronger together as more and more businesses deploy IP video streaming solutions across their enterprises. Exterity has established a large and loyal customer and partner base, with a number of organisations specifying solutions for

global projects. Bringing together Vitec and Exterity enables us to take advantage of our combined technologies so that our customers will have a broader choice of market-leading IP video solutions to suit their needs.” The combined engineering teams will develop a strategy to migrate the existing IPTV and digital signage portfolio into a converged platform to offer a wider range of solutions to customers. Now numbering almost 200 engineers across their global development centres, Vitec and Exterity will immediately begin working together to fully realise the software and hardware expertise of the embedded teams. Vitec is also connecting with Exterity’s broad network of integrators and partners to provide more information about the combined capabilities of the companies and to ensure their continuity of business strategy and deployments. Vitec will continue to support Exterity customers without interruption. www.exterity.com www.vitec.com

CTME deploys over 250 projectors at Al Wasl Dome UAE

Christie has announced that more than 250 of its projectors have been deployed by Creative Technology Middle East (CTME) at the Expo 2020 Al Wasl Dome. Standing at 67.5m tall and 130m in diameter, Al Wasl Dome is the heart of the Expo site, hosting major ceremonies and celebrations throughout the event. By deploying specially made projection screen material stretched tightly between each section of the dome’s trellis design, CTME was able to create a 360°, 25,380m2 projection surface. Visible from both inside and outside, the dome’s projection surface is one of the largest 360° projection surfaces in the world. Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture (AS+GG), the firm responsible for the design of Al Wasl Plaza, approached the project with the goal of creating an immersive platform that could be used for events of all sizes. Taking into consideration Dubai’s hot climate, the grand trellis design diffuses the sunlight during the day, while supporting a lush garden within the dome. AS+GG identified an opportunity to repurpose the shade structure at dusk, transforming it into an immersive experience. Delivering this experience is no small feat, and AV is at the forefront. “The AV was always a key part of the dome, it was always going to be an immersive experience,” explained Andy

The project called on 250 of Christie’s new 40,000-lumen 4K projectors Reardon, MD of CTME, the AV integrator for the dome. Given the dome’s vast surface area, selecting the right projectors was essential. The original design called for a laser phosphorbased system, but was changed based on emerging Christie technology. “We were made

aware of the development and pending release to market of the D4K40-RGB projectors from Christie,” recalled Simon Pritchard, director – projects, Jacobs Mace. “The brightness that these units deliver, together with the colour gamut associated with the RGB pure laser solution, was very appealing to the team.”

Andrew Nu, business development, CTME, noted: “At that time, it wasn’t common to get a 40,000-lumen projector with 4K resolution in laser. We’re very lucky that the laser technology lined up with this project. With lamp-based projectors, because of servicing the lamps, it would have been an impossible project.” A total of 252 Christie D4K40-RGB projectors were installed in 42 projector pods located around the inside perimeter of the dome. The pods, which are large enough to hold a compact car, have glass fronts, are airconditioned and rear accessible, and protect the projectors from the elements. Each pod can hold six projectors in two stacks of three. Al Wasl Plaza will host a slate of immersive content and experiences across the event’s six-month run. The dome will “wake up” twice daily, once in the morning and again after Maghrib, the sunset prayer. With content tailored to the time of day, projections will begin in the evening. The AV integration inside the dome is almost complete, with the CTME team commissioning projectors and providing onsite training. www.christiedigital.com www.ctme.co

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MEETINGS. MASTERED. Crestron Flex video conferencing.

Whether you’re home or in the office, video conferencing is the way business is done today. With Crestron Flex, you can start or join Microsoft Teams® meetings with one tap. You get an experience uniquely designed to ensure everyone is seen, heard, and engaged. Crestron Flex and Microsoft Teams – the perfect pairing to ensure work gets done, anywhere. Learn more at crestron.com/flex

All brand names, product names, and trademarks are the property of their respective owners. Certain trademarks, registered trademarks, and trade names may be used in this document to refer to either the entities claiming the marks and names or their products. Crestron disclaims any proprietary interest in the marks and names of others. Crestron is not responsible for errors in typography or photography. ©2021 Crestron Electronics, Inc.

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NEWS

d&b offers “pay what you consume” subscription WORLD

d&b audiotechnik has unveiled a new subscription service for its premium sound solutions. Addressing the global trend of “pay what you consume” as an alternative to ownership, the d&b Subscription-Series makes the manufacturer’s install audio systems more commercially accessible to a wider range of venues by removing the need for a large, upfront capital investment. “We’ve been working closely with our customers to understand their changing needs and it’s clear that technical flexibility and commercial accessibility are highly valued,” comments Amnon Harman, CEO d&b audiotechnik Group. “Our new Subscription-Series gives any venue owner or manager who aspires to offer the best

sound experience access to d&b solutions. The world has changed, buying behaviour has changed, and it’s critical that we address these new needs.” The standard Subscription-Series plan offers customers the combination of a low monthly payment and commitment periods as short as 24 months. The

subscription fee covers all audio system solution hardware, including accessories, system commissioning, post-install services, maintenance and decommissioning. At the end of the subscription period, customers can choose to continue their subscription, upgrade or adjust the system requirements, or cancel the service. Alongside the standard

plan, the manufacturer is also offering a pay-per-use option to enable customers to install additional d&b equipment for use at occasional special events. Venues are charged when the enhanced system components are actually used. “At d&b we have the mission to accurately transfer passions,” added Harman. “We know that extraordinary sound enhances and shapes extraordinary experiences and that’s what our systems deliver. Subscription-Series will make our premium solutions even more accessible for all kinds of installation projects, no matter the size, budget or application.” www.dbaudio.com

Telestream acquires Masstech WORLD

Telestream has announced the acquisition of Masstech. Telestream, a portfolio company of Genstar Capital, is a vertical market software business focused on the video space and a leader in media workflow orchestration, media streaming and delivery technologies. The deal to acquire Masstech has been completed. The latest acquisition, Telestream’s 10th, comes shortly after its purchase of EcoDigital – another leader in content management system technology. Masstech creates intelligent, hybrid cloudbased storage and asset lifecycle management solutions for the M&E industry and the combination of these two entities within Telestream will reportedly make it a leading supplier to the content storage/ management segment of the M&E market, with over 1,000 active customer systems in operation worldwide. “Telestream has effectively rolled up the archive management sector in less than six months through the acquisitions of DIVA and Masstech. The real winners are the customers since a company of Telestream’s scale is likely to bring stability to the archive management sector through greater investments in both R&D and enhanced service and support,” commented Joe Zaller, founder of Devoncroft Partners. “Devoncroft’s 2020 Big Broadcast Survey (BBS) shows that Telestream is ranked in the top 5 globally for Net Promoter Score and ‘great customer service’ among media technology software brands. Further,

buyers of archive management solutions ranked Telestream among the most trustworthy brands in the broadcast technology sector.” All the resources of Masstech will be transferred to Telestream. The company’s engineering and product management functions will be integrated within Telestream’s Content Management Business Unit, led by Geoff Tognetti, who joined the company with the EcoDigital acquisition. The priority for this team will be to combine the best intellectual property from Masstech and EcoDigital DIVA in one product. Masstech’s support sales and pre-sales teams will join Telestream’s global customer sales and support network. “Following the EcoDigital acquisition, this investment decision made natural sense and it is strategic in its very nature,” commented Dan Castles, CEO and cofounder of Telestream. “The knowledge base gained through the Masstech acquisition is complementary to what we have been doing and want to do in this area. This transaction brings together nearly two Exabytes of M&E content under the management of Telestream products in over 1,000 operational systems. With this market leadership comes a critical responsibility to work with our customers as they navigate a hybrid operating environment with assets on premise and in the cloud.” www.telestream.net

Akratek CEO, Selahattin Acaroglu

Cinergy AŞ joins forces with Akratek TURKEY

Broadcast playout solutions manufacturer Cinegy has further expanded its network of business partners in Turkey with the addition of Akratek. The manufacturer opened a local office, Cinegy AŞ, in Istanbul at the beginning of 2020 and since then the regional office has been busy expanding its business relationships with local service integrators and representatives. “We are delighted to strengthen our existing business by welcoming Akratek to our partner infrastructure,” confirmed Murat Küçüksaraç, COO of Cinegy AŞ. “Their knowledge and experience perfectly complement the other partners, as well as our focus, and we are looking forward to working with them more closely in the future.” Akratek is currently celebrating its 10th anniversary and has been serving the media industry both as a systems integrator and as a provider of a wide range of locally produced equipment. “Throughout our 10 years of business, we have worked with dozens of local, satellite and national TV channels, have helped set up most of the university radio

and television studios located in Turkey and have had the opportunity to work closely with foreign TV channels of Middle Eastern origin,” commented Akratek CEO, Selahattin Acaroglu. “We are delighted that we can now offer the whole suite of their integrated and modular solutions to our customers. Cinegy AŞ has been quickly established with strong staff who know both the products and the broadcast industry very well.” Soon after the partnership agreement was signed, training was conducted by Cinegy to the Akratek project team, enabling them to quickly get to know the products and solution opportunities. “Technology brands and products are very close in terms of functionality and quality,” Acaroglu continued. “In the field of automation, it is not easy to find companies who can provide a wide range of integrated solutions. Cinegy, as a brand, can satisfy customers easily with an efficient workflow, ease of installation and local support.” www.akratek.com www.cinegy.com

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NEWS

ISE Live & Online to replace four-day tradeshow

Qvest Group acquires tarent AG WORLD

WORLD

Following months of uncertainty, Integrated Systems Events (ISE) and its co-owners AVIXA and CEDIA have jointly announced ISE Live & Online, a series of local events in Barcelona, Munich, Amsterdam and London, supported by a digital offering powered by CISCO. The announcement follows recent withdrawals by major exhibitors, including Samsung, Sharp/NEC, Harman and PPDS from the scheduled four-day June tradeshow in Barcelona.

“We have reached this decision following extensive discussions with our exhibitors over the last few months,” explained ISE managing director, Mike Blackman. “All along there has been a clear demand for a four-day ISE show in Barcelona in June. However, uncertainty surrounding the pandemic and international travel remains, which means we are unable to run ISE 2021 in its traditional format. Our exhibitors have made it clear that there is a desire to get the industry together, but on a local level. In response, we are targeting Europe’s key markets across the AV sector and aim to deliver a quality audience who want to meet potential suppliers, existing customers and network with their peers.” More information will be released on the digital and the local events, with an initial schedule of 1–2 June: Fira Barcelona, 8–9 June: MAC

Forum, Munich, 15–16 June: RAI, Amsterdam and 23–24 June: Evolution, London. “We will be bringing ISE to four cities in June and continuing with our popular RISE Spotlight programme throughout the year,” continued Blackman. “We will be providing meaningful opportunities for sales teams to meet their customers, for people to experience product innovations and for networking. We have been humbled by the many messages of support that

we have received from our customers and partners who have appreciated the steps we have taken. We cannot wait to come back together in Barcelona, delivering the ISE show in February 2022.” “Covid has taught us all to listen more attentively,” added David Labuskes, AVIXA CEO. “Listen to our neighbours, our family, our co-workers, our customers and our market. I believe this approach reflects what we’ve heard, a strong desire for prudent and safe face-to-face gatherings that can reinforce business connections and initiate growth. We are honoured to be in a position to offer these to our community.” www.avixa.org www.cedia.net

The Qvest Group has acquired the majority stake of tarent AG to build a strategic partnership. tarent AG is a technology partner

and the public sector need strong partners in innovation, change and organisational management who advise on technology-driven

specialising in digital consulting and software development and supports companies in the realisation of digital and technology solutions. By acquiring the majority of tarent, the Qvest Group is taking the next step in expanding its role as a systems architect and as a technology and digital partner in the media sector. It also reportedly enables the group to position itself more strongly in target markets such as the corporate and the public sector. With more than 300 employees based in Germany and Romania, tarent has expertise in the design of scalable and flexible IT solutions such as platforms and is specialised in individual software development. “We are currently looking at an increasingly accelerated paradigm shift in the media world. Streaming and cloud platforms, artificial intelligence and the growing replacement of proprietary hardware with standard IT and software components are just a few indications of the change in the technology design of media infrastructures and the associated adjustments in work processes towards more digitality and automation,” said Peter Nöthen, Qvest Group CEO. “In the course of their digitisation strategy, companies

transformation processes and specialise in implementing customised digital solutions. This is exactly where tarent strengthens us with their dynamic teams, which stand for high innovative power, agility and software expertise. Boris Esser, one of the four board members of tarent AG, is convinced that “by gaining Qvest as a partner, we can strengthen our positive development and further expand it in the course of our growth strategy beyond the existing industries and customers. The combination of our joint innovative portfolios in the fields of technology and digitalisation creates an extremely appealing partner for the media sector. Companies will benefit from the fact that we know the challenges of the industry and cover solutions from consulting to implementation and support.” The management of tarent AG will continue to run the business. Together with the Qvest management, they will leverage their activities in the media, corporate and public sector and roll out tarent services across the Qvest Group’s worldwide locations. www.qvestmedia.com www.tarent.de

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8 PRO AVL MEA May–June 2021

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NEWS

3Monkeys bridges the comms gap with Agent-IC UAE

Clear-Com’s Agent-IC solution has proved invaluable to Dubai-based 3Monkeys Creative Consulting in allowing production to continue throughout the pandemic. Working with e2k Events x Entertainment, 3Monkeys has recently supported a number of high-profile virtual summits, with the Agent-IC app allowing for socially distanced communications between disparate studio locations spread across the globe. “Initially, the topic of using Agent-IC was introduced to us by e2k,” recalled 3Monkeys chief information officer, Rudi Buchner. “They have been running a huge Agent-IC infrastructure via their servers, with a couple of hundred people all using Agent-IC. We decided it was expedient to utilise our control room in Dubai as part of an event series for the Wall Street Journal, which was on air 24 hours for three days.” In addition to the main Wall Street Journal Tech Live production, which took place at e2k’s studio in Mountain View, California, an overnight Asia broadcast was moderated by WSJ’s bureau chiefs in Seoul and Beijing. This element was produced by e2k International in London and 3Monkeys Creative Consulting in Dubai. “We covered one half of the globe and our US partners covered the other half,” added Buchner. “The question obviously came up of how we can get all of the different studios

working together in a meaningful way.” Agent-IC was e2k’s preferred solution. “We found it provided all the necessary components for these kinds of globally organised and distributed events,” Buchner furthered. “Before Covid, we would fly to the US and do the show with everyone sitting in the ballroom. This is where Agent-IC is a really great product, because it no longer matters. You don’t need a hardware box to be in the loop.” The use of Agent-IC allowed all of the spread-out production teams to remain in constant contact throughout the event via their mobile devices, with little physical infrastructure aside from a Clear-Com LQ Unit located at the 3Monkeys studio in Dubai and an Eclipse EHX Frame with E-IPA Card situated in Mountain View, California. This setup also meant that the production group could remain socially distanced. “We had the producer sitting at home, but fully linked into the communication,” recalled Buchner. “Even the client and on-air host were using the Agent-IC app, which is a highly unusual structure when you look at how events typically take place.” Having proved successful throughout the course of the WSJ Tech Live Summit, a similar Agent-IC setup was created to support the National Geographic Storytellers Summit in January

2021, which was again produced by e2k. “The first WSJ production was a proof-of-concept that we can organise the structure between our two sister studios. We adopted the same approach for the National Geographic summit. Here, everything was fully controlled from Dubai, but the host studio and greenscreen were again in California. Once

again, everything worked flawlessly. It allowed us to produce this event in the same way we would produce a physical event. We plan to do it again.” www.3monkeys.net www.e2k.com www.nmkelectronics.com

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l May–June 2021 PRO AVL MEA 9

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NEWS

Pixel Artworks opens new immersive showroom in Dubai UAE

Lighting specialist Pixel Artworks has announced the official opening of its new Middle East office and state-of-the-art immersive showroom located in Dubai’s Design District (d3). While the Pixel Artworks ME team has been based in Dubai for the last two years, the launch of this new facility is said to

underline the company’s commitment to the local market. “With 15 years of innovation, creativity and technical expertise behind us, we’ve been able to deliver some of the Middle East’s most ambitious AV installations over the past two years,” commented Dan Alldis, global

development director, Pixel Artworks. “When you see some of the incredible work we have produced, it is easy to forget that it starts with a single pixel – so we are excited to be able to welcome visitors to our new regional office and immersive showroom and demonstrate just how we push the boundaries in light technology.” Pixel Artworks projects typically employ a combination of experiential design and technical expertise, together with sophisticated animation, immersive audio and interactive elements, to create virtually limitless concepts from giant airport activations to choreographed live shows to 360° immersive environments. Recent installations in the Middle East have included: Essence of Expo – an AV installation featuring 10m x 10m tall LED sculptures that transformed Dubai International Airport’s Terminal 3 Arrivals Hall into a giant LED and

Stage Audio Works launches end-to-end streaming solution SOUTH AFRICA

As a direct response to the new pressures faced by businesses in the wake of the pandemic, Stage Audio Works (SAW) has launched what it describes as South Africa’s first end-to-end streaming platform, StreamWorks. StreamWorks will deliver a combination of high-quality hardware, software and infrastructure enabling “secure, reliable and predictable” internet video delivery across the world. “Covid-19 has changed the way we work forever,” says SAW’s group CTO, Nathan Ihlenfeldt. “Participation in virtual events and remote meetings via the internet has become the norm for most of us and, even when the world finally starts to open up again, will remain an important part of our everyday lives. However, public streaming platforms and the internet in general has come under increasing pressure, with embarrassing consequences to the host organisations. With vast experience in delivering video reliably to internet users, especially in Africa, we decided to take things a step further and launched StreamWorks with the aim of providing a modern, end-to-end system that adds a layer of reliability and security to livestreams and ensures viewers can access content whenever and wherever they need to.” StreamWorks’ core offering is its web streaming service hosted on a stateof-the-art infrastructure with multiple

audio installation; a pop-up travelling LED and OLED cube which toured various districts of Dubai including Downtown Dubai Mall, highlighting aspects of Expo 2020; Tamawuj – live and interactive LG OLED Mirrorbox installations at Dubai International Airport’s Terminal 3 Departures Hall and Abu Dhabi International Airport’s Departures Terminal 3, allowing passengers to interact with the display and “paint with light”; and one of the world’s tallest projection mapping shows ever displayed onto the Four Seasons Hotel in Bahrain for the launch of Gulf Air’s new 787 Dreamliner. The showroom experience at Pixel Artworks’ new facility will give visitors a taste of how some of its projects have been designed and created, in a completely immersive environment. www.pixelartworks.com

NMK to distribute BrightSign in GCC GCC

CDN providers delivering content to end users, and multiple origin servers located in geo- and network-divers hosting environments. The StreamWorks player can be embedded in any website, offering full viewer engagement and geo analytics for each event. Events may also be simulcast to social media networks like YouTube, Facebook, Twitch, Periscope and others. Additional services include a customisable webinar platform that provides delegate registration, attendance tracking, chat and Q&A, coupled with reliable, low-latency video delivery technology; a customised event landing page with a custom URL slug which can include an embedded video stream player, chat, Q&A and other useful content; and an IP camera restreaming service, enabling customers to embed live feeds from RTSP or ONVIF cameras on their website for viewing across the world. Additionally, the StreamWorks platform offers an SRT Contribution network that allows remote contributors around the world to send high-quality, low-latency video and audio from their location to

the production site over the Amazon Web Services network. This is particularly useful for bringing in remote studios with greenscreens into one virtual production. “Our new platform has enabled companies and organisations to successfully stream their events, services, training or whatever it is they would like to share with audiences around the world,” furthered Ihlenfeldt. “We’ve had an amazing response from the corporate world as well as live venues, churches and religious organisations all looking for safe and reliable ways to reach and communicate with their audiences. It’s even provided a new revenue stream for many of our customers, which is excellent news. We’re delighted to have been able to leverage our expertise in reliable video delivery with the development of a new platform that enables our customers to react positively to the pandemic and continue to develop their businesses both locally and worldwide.”

Midwich Group company NMK Electronics has announced a new GCC distribution agreement with BrightSign. BrightSign designs media players and provides free software and cloud networking solutions for the commercial digital signage market worldwide, serving all vertical segments. The new partnership is an advancement towards strengthening NMK’s video portfolio, in line with offering complete solutions distributed from top-tier brands. “We are excited to add another best-inclass brand into our portfolio,” commented Dino Drimakis – director of BDM at NMK Electronics. “We see a huge upside for BrightSign with the digital media transformation across the Middle East and North Africa. BrightSign will be a key steppingstone in expanding our exciting video portfolio.” Pierre Gillet, vice president of international sales at BrightSign, said: “We are enthusiastic about this new partnership with a great value-added distributor of AV products and look forward to working with NMK’s team in the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Oman, Kuwait, Qatar, Lebanon and Egypt.”

www.streamworks.co.za

www.brightsign.biz www.nmkelectronics.com

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SPEECHLINE DIGITAL WIRELESS

IT-optimized wireless microphone system for speech and lecture Now with the new Multi Channel Receiver

www.sennheiser.com

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NEWS

Pixcom highlights AI, AR and IoT as emerging digital signage trends MIDDLE EAST

Digital signage and media technology solutions provider Pixcom Technologies LLC has highlighted a number of emerging trends to affect the Middle East market in upcoming years, predicting that the Middle East and Africa digital signage market is also expected to register a compound annual growth rate of over 6% by 2025. The next two years in particular are critical for the Middle East region, the company says, with big ticket events like Expo 2020–21 and FIFA World Cup 2022. The expected influx of tourists and visitors will mean an explosive period for the digital signage industry. According to Pixcom industry experts, digital signage will be one of the fastestgrowing AV solutions, with expected growth of over 20% by 2022 in the UAE. “The digital signage space is growing rapidly, driven by both the private and the public sectors,” said Shihas Kizhisseri, CEO at Pixcom. “This is a result of the prevailing circumstances as well as the shifting consumer preferences.

For 2021 and beyond, more businesses will adopt and deploy disruptive trends such as the heightened use of artificial intelligence, automation and IOT which is already impacting the industry and region.”

Pixcom also predicts that Internet of Things (IoT), Augmented Reality (AR) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) are among the trends likely to influence the industry. The company highlights the fact that as AI, AR and IoT further develop

and merge with technology like digital signage, the level of personalisation will grow to a great extent and productivity will increase as a result of AI. Furthermore, AI and AR are rapidly becoming household names as companies ranging from big retailers to small restaurants embrace these technologies. With digital signage already making customer experience in retail more comfortable for the customer, AI, AR and IoT will push this further. “Advertisers will also be in a better position to effectively monitor consumer behaviour and further gain meaningful insights, enabling them to reach their target consumers and, in turn, grow their respective bottom lines,” added Kizhisseri. “For companies who are conscious of their carbon footprint, advances in digital signage also offers them a greener option while making the next two years the most interactive and engaging from a brandconsumer perspective.” www.pixcom.ae

Broadcast Solutions supplies VAR for CHAN

VARVOR in operation CAMEROON

Broadcast Solutions has announced that it will be delivering two additional Video Assistant Referee (VAR) systems for the Cameroon Football Federation following the 2020 African Nations Championship. Also known as the Championnat d’Afrique des Nations or CHAN, the sixth edition of the biennial football tournament was organised by the Confederation of African Football (CAF) and hosted by Cameroon from 16 January to 7 February. Morocco may have successfully defended its title, but the Cameroon Football Federation wrote a new page in the video assistant referee playbook. The new VAR systems are an extension to the existing platforms that were deployed last year. For the first time, an African football federation developed and deployed its own VAR video operations room (or VARVOR)

Feeds are replayed back to the pitch for referees infrastructure. Local systems integrator Optimum was mandated in 2019 by the State of Cameroon to design, deploy and operate VAR infrastructure for the competition. In line with

CAF recommendations, Optimum selected EVS’ Xeebra as its core VAR platform. They then contracted Broadcast Solutions to design and integrate the video operations rooms that could meet the requirements of an international event such as the CHAN. Talking about the rollout of the project, Gaéthan Donlap, chief operating officer of Optimum, commented: “We faced three challenges. Firstly, current IFAB and FIFA regulations require up to six operators – one video assistant referee, two assistant video assistant referees, two replay operators and one technical guarantor – to share the same space during major games, which is a real challenge in Covid times. Secondly, we needed best-of-breed intercom integration between the VARVOR and the referees on the pitch. Finally, we had to build a platform that

could meet the tropical climate that we enjoy here in Cameroon.” As a FIFA-certified VAR technology provider and with EVS as a key technology partner, Broadcast Solutions was keen to support Optimum, the Cameroon Federation and CAF. “Our expertise in mobile production platforms was essential to successfully addressing Optimum requirements,” explained Stefan Breder, CEO and co-founder of Broadcast Solutions. “Beyond system integration of AV infrastructure, we had to ensure that ergonomics, air conditioning and power management met the requirements that a mission-critical service like VAR requires.” The resulting four VARVOR platforms were integrated into ISO-compliant 6m containers. These shelters provide the operating room needed by the referees and VAR operators, as well as the power distribution and AC required for systems to run. “We are impressed with the VAR platforms that Optimum deployed for the CHAN,” said Wael Elsebaie, VAR project manager from CAF. “Now certified, these platforms can be moved from one stadium to another without the need for renewed certifications. The EVS Xeebra video assistance system only requires some simple configuration data from a surveyor to update the virtual offside line detection system.” Moving forward, two additional VARVOR platforms are being built by Broadcast Solutions for the coverage of the African Cup of Nations (CAN) that will be hosted by Cameroon in February 2022. These will be commissioned in partnership with CAF authorities in Germany. www.broadcast-solutions.de

12 PRO AVL MEA May–June 2021

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The EVOLVE 50M is the perfect choice for bands/musicians, AV rental companies, DJs and any application where true professional audio performance is required in a supercompact and portable package. Connect two EVOLVE 50Ms via a network cable – double your mic/line inputs and mix the whole band via the QuickSmart Mobile app.

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NEWS

StreamStudio makes magic in Cape Town

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SOUTH AFRICA

With lockdowns still in place and restrictions on public gatherings, businesses have had to adjust their thinking and develop new products and services for their clients. Based in the Observatory suburb of Cape Town, ULTRA event technical solutions has launched StreamStudio, a creative space for clients to produce content amidst the new Covid regulations. The studio is equipped with a variety of new equipment, including a JBL Vertec line array sound system, JBL SRX, PRX and VRX sound solutions, JBL LSR studio monitors, Shure microphones and Soundcraft mixing consoles. The new space provides clients with the opportunity to create conference greenscreen shoots, live DJ productions, band video recordings, fashion shoots, live band streams and educational sessions.

The studio comprises four spaces equipped with Soundcraft Vi1, BSS DI, JBL and Crown amplification which can be adapted to suit a variety of streaming

applications. The main studio is popular among per formers for its greenscreen, allowing artists to be creative with their backgrounds and overall per formance

effects. The smaller studios are designed to present a professional corporate setting for panel interviews and presentations. “In the years gone by, a greenscreen was only used to make films. Now, visual effects or computer-generated images can be executed to create the per fect background and take the viewers on a journey,” pointed out Costa Champanis, owner of StreamStudio. “We are proud of the work we have done thus far, and we are looking forward to putting together additional high-quality productions for our customers. Our space is open for creatives to make magic.” www.jblpro.com

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DYNAMIC MUSIC DISTRIBUTION

High-quality music distribution in multi-zone / source applications

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DSP

InfoLine picks DAS for Martial Arts Palace

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A new DAS Audio loudspeaker system has been installed at the Martial Arts Palace in Nur-Sultan city to provide reinforcement through the complex’s 5,000-seat main hall. InfoLine LLP designed and integrated the new system alongside the inclusion of cutting-edge security, data storage and video technology. The sports palace is located in Nur-Sultan city, one of the most modern capitals in North Asia and one the fastest-growing cities in Kazakhstan in the business, health, academic and cultural sectors. The new Martial Arts Palace is said to be a clear example of the innovation that the capital city is carrying out in all its new construction projects. Totalling 32,000m2, the palace is designed to host a wide variety of martial events, both national and international. The main hall accommodates 5,000 seats and the primary

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challenge for InfoLine was to get the right sound levels in each and every area, especially in the main arena, where it was vital to guarantee that music and voice could be heard without any distortion in such an acoustically large space. The distribution of the system was strategically designed to achieve uniform SPL and tonal balance throughout the audience area. InfoLine LLP opted for 84 Event Series line arrays, predominantly the three-way, powered Event210A cabinet, which reportedly provided high output and intelligibility for both voice and music reproduction. Ease of use and simple installation was also credited with reducing the need for further maintenance and adjustment. Completing the rest of the installation, the Factor-8-T system was presented as the ideal choice. This full-range loudspeaker houses an 8-inch low-frequency transducer with a 1.5-inch

voice coil, while its high-frequency unit is a 1-inch soft dome ferrofluid cooled tweeter that offers wide dispersion characteristics to cover large areas. InfoLine was contracted on behalf of BI Group, one of the largest construction companies in Kazakhstan, which was in charge of all the building work. Following the project, it expressed satisfaction and enthusiasm regarding the results achieved by InfoLine, as well as the quality of the sound and customer service offered by DAS. “Despite our years of experience in this type of construction work and stadium installations, we had never witnessed audio with the quality and exceptional intelligibility offered by the DAS Audio systems,” commented a spokesperson from InfoLine. www.dasaudio.com InfoLine-kz.com

14 PRO AVL MEA May–June 2021

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SSL joins forces with ALGAM in Maghreb AFRICA

Solid State Logic has announced ALGAM as its new exclusive distribution partner covering the Maghreb region. The company will provide sales and support across all four of SSL’s vertical markets – broadcast, live, studio and audio creation. Headed by Didier Perez, ALGAM Entreprises has extensive experience in supporting professional audio products. Under the new agreement it will present customers with integrated solutions utilising SSL’s AoIP technologies and unique interoperability between live and broadcast platforms. For more than three decades, the manufacturer has provided sales and support via its French subsidiary, SSL France, under the leadership of director of international

explained.“We had to find a solution where new and existing customers would get the best support possible, for all our verticals. Partnering with ALGAM, who has both the AUDIA and ALGAM Entreprises arms of the business, is a fantastic opportunity.” “We are delighted to take SSL on board,” commented Perez. “This fits ideally with our strategy to further establish ALGAM in the sale and support of complex projects, as well as providing high-end solutions for music studios. SSL’s network solutions based around Dante, AES67 and ST 2110 offer innovative solutions which address new challenges in broadcast and live sound.” sales, Philippe Guerinet. “We were looking for a new structure capable of supporting

www.solidstatelogic.com

POWERSOFT.COM

SCAN FOR MORE

CyBC turns to MOG for OB upgrade

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MOG recently deployed a new custom solution based on P2 structures to meet the Cyprus Broadcasting Corporation’s requirements for an upgraded OB

Van production ecosystem. Cyprus Broadcasting Corporation (CyBC) is Cyprus’ public broadcaster. It star ted its operation in 1953 and transmits

island-wide on four radio stations, two television channels and one satellite channel. CyBC reached out to MOG to carr y out the upgrade with its main goal being to have a P2 structure as an output, and get P2 structures rewrapped from mxf Op1A, 2 to record AVC-I 100 and DVCPRO50 from OB Vans productions, for compatibility issues with existing infrastructure. While it’s standard to have P2 structures as an input, it’s not as an output meaning customisation was required. The list of requirements also included automatic jobs – an automated process that allows for the network watch folder to rewrap for Op1A to P2 structures, and automatic deletion of the output

15/04/21 12:43

file when the job is complete. Lastly, different P2 structures should be created equal to the number of input files dropped. MOG’s chosen solution was the compact mDECK Densu A-2, which is capable of capture, file-based ingest and playback. The mDECK Densu A-2 provides the ability for quality control and feed monitoring, while offering a total of four media operations, which in this case was defined to be three file-based operations and one playback operation, working simultaneously. “It’s a ver y flexible and power ful machine,” commented Savvas Antoniou, TV and radio engineer at CyBC. www.cybc.com.cy www.mog-technologies.com

May–June 2021 PRO AVL MEA 15

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NEWS

G

Procom take DAS for a RIDE

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UAE

RIDE, the first boutique indoor spinning studio in Ras Al Khaimah, has recently opened its doors to offer high energy fitness classes. The new venue’s management was looking to create an immersive, club-like fitness experience that would encourage people to go beyond their limits while experiencing fun in their movements. Procom Middle East was tasked with the supply, technical installation and commissioning of the audiovisual system. DAS Audio was selected as the ideal sound system for the project as it could deliver the quality, power and intensity needed. The system at RIDE includes six DAS Q-43-T passive speakers and three Q-10 compact passive subwoofers, powered by two PA-900 and two PA-1500 stereo

amplifiers which incorporate rear located switches, permitting operational mode selection and input sensitivity selection. An additional DAS Action-8A monitor was installed boasting extended bandwidth, improved dynamic range and low distortion. For the entrance and changing rooms areas, 10 CL-8-T two-way passive coaxial speakers were integrated into the ceiling. In order to create dynamic colour mixing and pixel effects, 100m of PixiStrip 60-I RGB LED pixel strips from Cyclops Lighting were integrated into the walls and step recesses throughout, while 150m of PixiNeon LED neon flex were incorporated into the walls and ceiling. For the front

Images courtesy of Yael Ilan

Robe follows the science in Israel ISRAEL

wall, 800 PixiDots were installed for screen mapping, while above the stage, four Razor RGB6300 rotating laser bars were placed forming a cage around the instructor, working along with a HZ-500 haze machine for enhanced effects. The DJ booth and instructor zone were illuminated with two PR 20W mini LED profiles and two XL 18 RGBW LED PARs. Lighting was controlled using a pair of Madrix Luna 16 DMX port network nodes in tandem with Madrix 5 software, allowing for the creation of variety of effects with pixel mapping. Lighting and audio control was kept simple for instructors as Procom built a fully customised, all-in-one Symetrix control interface on an iPad. Symetrix’s Prism 8x8 digital signal processor, a control server and xControl were connected to the app, allowing for the AV control of the studio via click of a button. “RIDE Spinning Studio is the first of its kind in RAK and incorporates a sleek design with full technical integration,” commented Procom’s Anro Schroeder. “All the systems across video, lighting and sound work seamlessly together to create a high-end experience.” www.procom-me.com

An all-Robe lighting rig has been deployed at an annual event honouring the work of Israeli scientists at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Rehovot. The university, which offers graduate and post-graduate degrees in natural and exact sciences, moved to a digital format this year but with as much live content as possible, such as lecturers, seminars, Q&A sessions and awards. Lighting designer Eran Klein of Cochavi&Klein was asked to create lighting for the event which was co-ordinated by communications agency FaZa. As well as being broadcast, recorded and streamed from the Weizmann Institute’s Sela Auditorium, presenters joined in

Spiider LED wash beams were on the overhead trusses with the MegaPointes. “Basically, I needed to know that I could quickly and easily get key lighting onto the guests,” explained Klein. “In this environment, colour harmony is extremely important, and Robe fixtures all have nice, refined and organic colour systems that produce such a great range of high-quality colours.” Lighting rental company Simul had to cross-rent the BMFL Blades from Danor Theatre and Studio Systems for this event for which they also supplied audio and LED screens. All the scenic elements were delivered by Gideon Rokach. Klein

live by Zoom, Teams and other remote conferencing platforms. Set designer Izaq Ronen Wasserstein created a diagonally orientated stage with a lightning flashshaped walkway with a plexi top which was lit from below. Klein used six Robe BMFL Blades, two of which were positioned out in the audience area on flightcases and the other four were rigged on two V-shaped trusses that mimicked the shape of the lightning flash on the stage. Klein also deployed 10 out of 15 Robe MegaPointes on the trusses with the other five on the floor – for effects – and 10 LEDBeam100s were also on the floor along the front of stage as footlights and to enlarge the overall picture. Seven Robe

programmed and ran the lights on a grandMA2 system with full redundancy. With no live audience, lighting and video effects were used to help create an atmosphere, a task that is “easier said than done”. Klein worked very closely with the OB truck team to ensure that the process went smoothly. “The Weizmann Institute has a great reputation for high-end science and that needed to be reflected in the presentation which had to look official but be cool, sharp and on-point. It was a demanding task, but we all love challenges and being imaginative. Everyone was delighted with the results.” www.robe.cz

16 PRO AVL MEA May–June 2021

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NEWS

GESAB celebrates continued success in ME MIDDLE EAST

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It’s been seven years since GESAB started working together with Martin Professional Middle East to gain traction in the Middle East control centre market, jointly executing their first project in Saudi Arabia in December 2013. The successful partnership between the two companies has since seen them engaged in a number of prestigious projects around the region, with more due on the horizon later this year. GESAB had previously executed projects sporadically in this part of the world thanks to existing relationships with a number of Spanish consultants and integrators; however, working with Martin Pro ME has allowed it to make a permanent and continued niche in the market. “The support, availability and professionalism of Martin Pro, as well as their unlimited portfolio of integrators, have been crucial elements so far in our business plan in the Middle East,” affirmed GESAB international sales director, Fernando Cajal. “The narrow relationship of trust with their powerful team is proof that the projects carried out so far have been a success.” The relationship between the two companies ramped up further in 2020, with the execution of a substantial number of projects carried out jointly. GESAB credits Martin Pro ME’s support and knowledge of the market to being fundamental to the development of all those projects during their seven-year relationship,

L–R: GESAB international sales director Fernando Cajal with Martin Pro ME’s Bilal Assidi included among which are the Al Ula 911 Control Center and the 911 Command and Control Centre in Meca, both in Saudi

Arabia. The implementation of a modern VIP conference room with custom technical furniture throughout and high-end audiovisual

equipment at the Prince Mohammad Bin Fahd University in Saudi Arabia and the Control Center with KVM DeskWall system in Nedaa for the Professional Corporation of Telecommunications in Dubai was also completed jointly by the teams. In order to increase its local GESAB presence, Martin Pro recently decided to establish a showroom and experience centre at its facilities in Dubai and Riyadh, providing a way for interested clients to see different models of technical furniture for their control centre first-hand, in addition to the various complementary audiovisual solutions offered by the distributor, including demos of the KVM DeskWall system. “The future that awaits the GESAB/Martin Pro Middle East partnership looks very positive and exciting,” commented Martin Pro ME’s Bilal Assidi. “As audiovisual solutions providers, this relationship gives us an amazing opportunity to work on the most luxurious projects in the Middle East alongside a professional technical furniture provider. Since there are many projects that we are already carrying out together, and those that are still to come, we look forward to building and reaching new market segments with GESAB.” www.gesab.com www.martinpro-me.com

Enhanced customer experience : Priority paging with excellent Background Music audio quality. Sounds good.

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Ensure important paging announcements are intelligible whilst providing high quality background music in order to enhance your customer’s comfort and shopping experience. The A-3600D series digital mixer amplifier is equipped with seven audio inputs, a two zone selector, broadcasting priority with chime, and emergency paging via a control input, as well as high and low impedance outputs. As there are four power models available, 60w, 120w, 240w and 480w, the A-3600D is suitable for small, medium and large applications. www.toa.eu

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TOAEurope

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TOA Electronics Europe

We supply sound, not equipment. May–June 2021 PRO AVL MEA 17

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NEWS

MBC Group reimagines its playout solution with Versio UAE

Imagine Communications has gone live with the first phase of a new playout infrastructure for MBC GROUP, the largest media company in the MENA region. Imagine and MBC collaborated over an extended period to create an efficient playout automation environment that protects revenue streams through multiple, interlocking redundancies, while providing opportunities for future expansion. To deliver both the cost-effectiveness and operational flexibility that MBC sought, the entire solution at the broadcaster’s headquarters in Dubai Media City has been implemented in software running on COTS hardware. Pivotal to the installation is Imagine’s Versio modular playout solution, which allows MBC to quickly add new channels to meet its changing business needs, while enabling the addition of new functionalities without disruption to daily operations. The first phase of the playout centre is equipped to deliver 11 premium HD channels, with full N+N redundancy and seamless failover. Centralised control of the Versio

EMEA

EMEA sales agency Technological Innovations Group (TIG) has been named the 2020 top global distributor for Salamander Designs. This award is in recognition of the growth in demand that TIG has driven for Salamander Designs’ cabinets, carts, mounts and tables for workplaces throughout the EMEA region.

playout channels, graphics and master control, as well as all third-party devices, is handled by Imagine’s ADC automation. Versio IOX delivers large-scale shared storage for all content and playback and provides an environment in which third-party software tools can be incorporated. Nexio+ AMP video servers manage content ingest with content workflows controlled using

the Nexio Motion workflow orchestrator in conjunction with Versio IOX shared storage. The software-defined architecture provides interfaces to a number of external networks, including traffic and scheduling, as well as data sources for the on-air graphics. www.imaginecommunications.com

THE Technology overcomes restrictions for Amr Diab’s return to Dubai

UAE

For four consecutive years, Egyptian superstar Amr Diab performed to capacity crowds as part of the popular Dubai Shopping Festival. Despite current Covid safety restrictions in place at the time, this year’s show was no different. Organiser SIA was quick to adapt by moving this year’s concert to the 25,000-capacity Dubai Sports City Stadium for a socially distanced audience of 6,000. To retain the same energy level and give fans the best experience, regional AV supplier THE Technology delivered a substantial L-Acoustics K Series system. “SIA had a big challenge,” recalled THE Technology sound designer and system engineer, Walid Antar, who worked alongside FOH engineer Tamer Zouaiby, monitor engineer Andrew Esbergen and network engineer Sbobo. “The spectators were seated in an area five times larger than previous years. Achieving full coverage with the same great sound as before in such a big open space, presented us with many challenges. We knew the only choice of system was L-Acoustics, and we needed to be very detailed in the

SALAMANDER DESIGNS NAMES TIG TOP GLOBAL DISTRIBUTOR IN 2020

design process, ensuring precision in every loudspeaker angle to avoid reflections and to account for the smaller number of people absorbing the energy of the system.” The design also changed almost daily to accommodate new health and safety measures and modifications in the audience seating plan. “Because of the restrictions, we weren’t able to bring in external help from L-Acoustics as we would normally do but, by using the Soundvision software, we

were still able to achieve great results,” noted Antar. The final setup comprised main hangs of 12 L-Acoustics K2 atop six Kara per-side, with 12 stacks of two Kara atop two SB28 subs, evenly spaced in front of the stage lip. A further 60 Kara, 12 SB28 and eight SB18 handled delays, while stage monitoring comprised two stacks of six Kara atop four SB28 for sidefill, plus 24 X15 HiQ along the stage lip. Control was via a total of eight LA12X and 27 LA8 amplified controllers. Despite the challenges faced, SIA was said to be very impressed by the L-Acoustics system’s clarity and the support from THE Technology. “Indeed, without the efforts of everyone involved, this concert would not have been able to go ahead,” said Antar. “We believe that this new audience/area ratio will be the norm during the coming year, which means that adopting these practices will be a stepping stone to bringing live events back to fans.

TIG’s EMEA sales director, Steven Dullaert The annual awards honour an elite group of the manufacturer’s partners for their sales growth achievements. Despite the challenging environment of 2020, members of this elite group were acknowledged for their ability to overcome difficulties and adapt to succeed. “Bringing TIG into the family of Salamander channel partners has been a true pleasure,” said Paul Sabbah, international sales and business development for Salamander. “The entire team is well organised and efficient and are a delight to work with thanks to their great enthusiasm for building our brand presence and our sales in the EMEA region. We continue to look for big things in the future with TIG, especially as they are able to enhance and promote their new Experience Spaces that include Salamander solutions.” TIG’s EMEA sales director, Steven Dullaert, who received the award on behalf of the company, commented: “We’re grateful to Salamander Designs for recognising the hard work of our dedicated sales team across the entire EMEA region. It’s an honour and a pleasure to work with such an esteemed brand, well-known for its stylish, sophisticated and scalable solutions, custom-made for the end user and designed to help integrators deploy fully integrated, futureproof smart workspaces. This fits in perfectly with the TIG ethos and it is an absolute joy to be able to bring Salamander as part of our AV/IT ecosystem to all our customers.” www.salamanderdesigns.com

www.l-acoustics.com

www.tig.eu

www.thetechnology.me

18 PRO AVL MEA May–June 2021

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NEWS

Electrovision selects Vissonic for Qeshm Oil

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Electrovision has recently completed a project to outfit a conference hall at the Qeshm Oil Investment Company office located in Tehran. In order to meet Qeshm Oil’s demands for a high-quality and reasonable priced system, Electrovision selected a solution from Vissonic, comprising a VIS-DCC-T chairman unit and 20 VIS-DCD-T delegate units. These are controlled and connected via a VIS-DCP2000 main control unit using Cat5e cabling. According to the systems integrator, the Vissonic units benefit from a high-quality internal loudspeaker, which removed the need for any external sound system in the room. They also feature an OLED display in order to show the information related to the meeting and a 3.5mm headphone jack. In order to record meetings taking place inside the hall, Electrovision deployed a VIS-CDS-S Full-HD robotic PTZ camera, a Datavideo SE-650 video

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switcher and a Datavideo HDR-1 video recorder. The room’s image distribution system is based around 11 motorised Vissonic monitor lifts, which are able to provide high image

quality while occupying a minimum of space to bring the required information and images to the audience. Four VSP panels are installed on the conference table to allow users to send

required data to the image playback system. Equipping the Qeshm Oil conference hall has been another example of successful cooperation between Electrovision and Iran’s oil and petrochemical industry, which has resulted in the systems integrator designing and equipping numerous conference halls and auditoriums throughout the country. “This was one of our first projects using Vissonic products,” commented Electrovision’s Arash Sadri. “Both our team and the client are completely satisfied with the result. In our view, Vissonic products will have a bright future internationally considering the company’s innovative mindset – a way of thinking that has led to the production of diverse and high-quality products”. www.electrovision.ir www.vissonic.com

Cubic Media deploys FOR-A for latest OB UAE

FOR-A Middle-East Africa has announced that Cubic Media Production, a broadcast and production company based in Abu Dhabi, has anchored its newest production vehicle with a FOR-A HVS-490 digital video switcher. The truck has already been booked for a variety of high-profile projects, from multicamera production of professional football matches to last month’s coverage of the historic UAE Mars probe for Abu Dhabi TV. Built last summer on a MercedesBenz Sprinter van chassis, UNIT2 4K is a compact mobile unit that typically supports eight-camera HD or six-camera 4K productions. Feras Hamdan, managing partner and director of operations for Cubic Media Production, said the HVS-490 was perfect for the new truck, because it included features and options usually found in larger mixers. UNIT2 4K also uses all three of the switcher’s multi-viewer outputs.

Beyond the HVS-490, UNIT2 4K also includes two FA-505 and three FA-9600 multichannel signal processors, which are primarily used to conver t external sources to 4K during productions. However, the processors can also be used to synchronise inputs, embed and de-embed audio, provide colour correction and down conver t footage from 4K to HD or HD to SD. Other installed FOR-A equipment includes MFR-3000 and MFR-3232 routing switchers. This is not Cubic Production’s first FOR-A purchase; the company features the manufacturer’s equipment in several of its mobile production units. “We trust their products for our live broadcasts as well as their support here in UAE,” Hamdan said. “The outstanding technical and operational support we receive before and after purchasing

makes us confident about having FOR-A in most of our broadcast chains. It gives us a feeling that FOR-A is a team member, rather than a product.” “You don’t get selected to produce live coverage of prime projects like the Mars probe unless your company is reliable and delivers high-quality work,” furthered

Mohammed Abu Ziyadeh, FOR-A systems engineering manager. “Cubic Production continues to put its trust in FOR-A products because they are dependable, affordable, and packed with features for HD and 4K workflows.” www.for-a.com

20 PRO AVL MEA May–June 2021

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NEWS

ATEIS Middle East covers Festival Plaza Mall UAE

ATEIS Middle East has recently added another prestigious project to its portfolio of references with the completion of Festival Plaza Mall in Dubai. The company has been involved in the some of the UAE’s largest shopping mall projects over the last 15 years, proving its credentials once more with the supply of a highperformance PAVA (Public Address Voice Alarm) and background music system at Festival Plaza. The project revolves around the use of the ATEIS NET audio network with fibre optic backbone, which broadcasts 48 audio channels with a latency of less than 1ms to nine rack locations across the mall. The fibre optic cables used are fire-rated, multi-mode 62.5um type with a transmission capability of 2km between each node. Being a ring of fibre, the ATEIS NET is said to be 100% fault tolerant for any kind of network cable failure and compliant to EN54-16 and DCD (Dubai Civil Defence) regulations.

ATEIS design engineers proposed and implemented the system of nine DAU (Distributed Amplification Units) with a peer-peer network. Each DAU rack is powered by 230V mains with back-up by 12V battery banks and chargers onhand for operation during power failure. According to the manufacturer, all the products used in this project were approved to EN54-26, EN54-24, DCD and UL standards and comply with all local and international regulations of life safety. The ATEIS Middle East team studied the challenging acoustic environment of the mall before placing ATEIS SmartVox-60-II speakers on the ceiling. The speaker design enabled the sound to be focused, “showering” in a narrow beam of audio from ceiling to floor. This helped in reducing the wall reflections, achieving high SPL levels of more than 90dB across the mall corridors. The corridor design was simulated in EASE 4.3 3D acoustic simulation software before implementation. In total, the project features 28,000W RMS of Class-D amplification, a high-speed fibre network of more than 3.5km of cables, nine Distributed Amplification Units, more than 700 EN54-24 approved loudspeakers, multichannel music sources and four

PAME Pg4-31 News.indd 21

ATEIS PSS Linux based 5-inch control call paging stations. This significant amount of equipment can be completely monitored from a single control room location. In all, the system delivers audio over fire-rated cables with 100V audio signals to more than 75 zones. “The ATEIS team is proud to include such a significant and prestigious project as a reference and we are delighted that our innovative solutions have delivered another happy client,” commented an ATEIS Middle East spokesperson. www.ateis.ae

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23/04/2021 15:34


NEWS

Stage Audio Works returns to Arts Centre MAURITIUS

The Caudan Arts Centre (CAC) is a landmark arts and conference centre in the East African region. Designed by Arup UK with systems integration services from Stage Audio Works (SAW) in South Africa, CAC is the first truly international-standard venue in Mauritius. It was inaugurated in December 2018 and incorporates a 431-seat theatre, a rehearsal space, three bars, a restaurant and four well-equipped, modular conference spaces. Having successfully designed (in conjunction with Arup), supplied and installed state-of-

sounding amplified at all, and I think it does that very well,” remarked Dwarka. “T-Series offers a very comfortable powerto-size ratio, perfect for our 431-seat auditorium; it is capable of handling any type of music, from classical to rock and has enough headroom to handle powerful music without blasting the ears of the listeners, whilst the ArrayProcessing technology delivers even sound dispersion and consistent tonal balance throughout the auditorium for a really natural listening experience.”

L-ISA demo sets scene for future of live events in South Africa SOUTH AFRICA

the-art audio, video and communications systems throughout the venue upon its construction, CAC recently called on SAW to return and design and install the systems for its newest conference facility, a fifth conference room capable of accommodating up to 150 people seated. “We have been incredibly successful with our theatre and really pleased with all of SAW’s work to date, so there was no question of not calling them back when we wanted to integrate our new conference space,” recalled CAC sound manager, Kooshal Dwarka. “We have a d&b T-Series system with ArrayProcessing in the main auditorium integrated with Yamaha FOH and monitoring consoles across a Dante network. A Q-SYS Ecosystem handles control and management and integrates with our video show relay system based on Blackmagic Design video technology with SDI distribution. It’s all very sophisticated.” SAW also provided digital signage and BGM/paging solutions for the foyer and public areas along with touchscreen controllers to manage simple functions like audio source selection, music player control and volume. Finally, there are a number of facility panels outside the auditorium and in the lobby and foyers. “The theatre is quite often used as a conference venue for large corporate events, so it was important that the sound system is able to handle speech reinforcement as well as it does music reinforcement – ideally without really

A very different approach was adopted for the modular conference facilities which are all based around Christie projectors, Da-Lite screens, QSC loudspeakers and amplifiers, Sennheiser wireless microphones and Atlona switchers. “We wanted as interoperable and flexible a system as possible for the conference spaces as they can be used in such a variety of combinations and formats depending on the size and type of event,” Dwarka furthered. “Whilst the new conference space called La Scala – which can seat up to 150 people – is physically separate from the other conference area, it made sense to have it based on the same equipment and on the same network, so SAW extended the theatre’s Q-SYS network to incorporate the AV system in the new room. As usual, the results are impeccable.” Dwarka underlined both the quality and the fully integrated nature of the installation. “It’s the first of its kind in Mauritius and it’s right up there with the best in the world. We have unmatched sound locally which really makes the reputation of the Caudan Arts Centre. From an operational perspective it’s reliable, stable and offers control and monitoring from a single computer with the appropriate software for each application. Stage Audio Works have done a fantastic job for us at every level. We couldn’t have asked for more.” www.stageaudioworks.com

A recent demonstration of L-Acoustic’s L-ISA Immersive Hyperreal Technology and Klang:technologies was held at the MGG studios in Johannesburg. Presented jointly by Immersive Show Technology, MGG and DWR Distribution, the extensive four-day session was intended to kickstart a discussion of how events in South Africa can be taken to a level “never seen or heard before”. While Immersive Show Technology (IST) is a newly formed company, it is represented by industry players, director and team leader Chris de Lancey, audio engineer Adriaan van der Walt and audiovisual mastermind Adrian du Preez. IST owns a pair of L-ISA processors as well as a full Modulo Pi media server solution for live tracking of objects, resulting in both sound and visuals moving as the object moves around onstage. This creates a more natural and immersive experience, encompassing the listener with the perception of sound from all directions. “Hybrid events with a small audience is the new cliché, but we are all in agreement that when the industry opens and we are once again able to work on large, live events, streaming will not fall away but, instead, form part of the production to make shows accessible to a greater audience,” commented van der Walt. “With that, we’ve realised that for the time being, we can offer the L-ISA experience to the smaller group of people watching live from a studio or venue, which makes for a well-produced show with a nice look and feel for camera. The audience in the venue will hear L-ISA, while a second engineer can mix the same show via Klang for the broadcast, enabling the two systems to work in tandem.”

MGG in turn is one of the largest technical suppliers in South Africa, which very early during the lockdown period in 2020, extended its services to develop studios on its premises to cater for online events. It hosted the demos at its studios in Johannesburg. As suppliers of both L-Acoustics and Klang in South Africa, DWR Distribution was also involved in the demonstration. DWR’s Kyle Robson was invited to showcase Klang’s immersive capabilities for both virtual productions and in-ear monitors while working in conjunction with a DiGiCo SD10 audio console. For the L-ISA demo, van der Walt worked closely with DWR’s Chris Pugh, a certified L-ISA system engineer, to design and implement the audio system. ‘One of the barriers often experienced with competitive rental technical suppliers is, understandably, a professional protectiveness towards their client and a reluctance to sub-contract,” added de Lancey. “But when we start collaborating and complement each other to jointly deliver a solution that will literally blow clients away, we’ll be able to work in a very exciting creative space. The demonstrations at MGG were exceptionally well received, with clients realising how solutions could change the way they do events.” “I think we all realise that our current position in the pandemic is temporary,” concluded van der Walt. “But it is good to talk and plan so that when we get the go-ahead to work again, we can be prepared and not fumble in the dark. Once people see the value of an experience, they will start paying for it.” www.dwrdistribution.co.za www.mgg.co.za

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07.04.2021 10:26:33 27/04/2021 16:15


NEWS: EDUCATION

DWR talks rigging at Cape Audio College

Mark Brunner Professional Audio Scholarship WORLD

SOUTH AFRICA

Having made a return to in-person training at its recent Basic Rigging Training Course in Cape Town, DWR Distribution first needed a venue capable of hosting the event. Luckily, the Cape Audio College in Observatory quickly raised its hand and offered the use of its lecture hall for the event. The Basic Rigging Training Course was presented by Robert Izzett and delved into the rigging laws applicable to South Africa while covering the basic rigging hardware and calculations according to SANS 10366. Practical training included the handling and use of rigging hardware, shackles, steel wire ropes, trussing, endless rounds and chains. The course was attended by three staff members from the college, namely Brandon Basson, Marvin Lombard and Ian Watson, and four delegates from the live events industry in Cape Town, including Nimesh Parmar from NXS Technologies, Shaun Brown and Jarred Venter from Gearworx, and Chris Knoetze from Audiopimps. The feedback received was positive all round. “I have been in the industry since 1994, in various guises, and I can say that I wish Robert

Izzett and DWR were offering their rigging course back then,” commented Watson, head of live sound at Cape Audio College. “I found it super informative and useful, and I will think twice before I set up any piece of gear. I now know that there is a limit to my knowledge, and that limit could be the difference between a successful show and an epic fail.” www.dwrdistribution.co.za

In partnership with Shure, the Professional Audio Manufacturers Alliance (PAMA) has announced the establishment of the Mark Brunner Professional Audio Scholarship, offered annually to students worldwide pursuing an education in professional audio. Brunner, who tragically passed away in October 2020, was a long-time Shure executive, PAMA founding member and leading voice in the audio community, had an unwavering passion for education and mentorship throughout his career. The US$2,000 scholarship will go to a recipient in an accredited audio programme, with PAMA and Shure interested in learning how the applicant plans to share their knowledge with others in a manner consistent with Brunner’s legacy. A former president of PAMA from 2011– 2013, Brunner was also a key member of PAMA’s Marketing and Retreat Planning Committees, providing an important and consistent voice to the strategic planning and implementation of various PAMA activities. On behalf of PAMA, chair of the board of directors Chris Regan stated: “We established the Mark Brunner Pro Audio Scholarship as our way of paying tribute to one of the leading voices of our industry. One of Mark’s tenets was his unwavering pursuit to educate. It’s with that same passion that we wish to award an annual scholarship in his name.” Brunner held several key positions during his three decades at Shure, which he joined in 1989, including director of advertising and managing director of the musical instrument and touring sound business unit. Most recently, he was VP of global corporate and government relations, working on industry issues including the FCC rules for wireless device operation/frequency and the spectrum allocation, which he lobbied to protect the wireless microphone market sector. Additionally, he was a prominent member of the Recording Academy Producers and Engineers Wing Manufacturers Council,

Mark Brunner sharing his views on legislative wireless white space and broadband issues and other industry matters. “Because of Mark’s passion, expertise, diligence and resolve, Shure’s voice was heard,” commented Shure president and CEO, Chris Schyvinck. “He effectively educated key individuals about the importance of spectrum protection, created important partnerships with user communities and helped us retain the trust and loyalty of our customers. Mark was a steadfast ambassador for Shure, helping us preserve our legendary reputation with associates, customers, influencers and the public. I knew Mark for more than three decades, and I dearly miss his presence every day. I know that this scholarship would mean so much to my friend, as it does to our company.” www.pamalliance.org/scholarship

Sennheiser launches assistive listening over Wi-Fi e-book ONLINE

Sennheiser has published a new education e-book to aid the university experience with assistive listening over Wi-Fi. As the digital transformation of post-secondary education rapidly advances, assistive listening systems that use Wi-Fi are growing ever more relevant. While not yet mainstream, the technology offers a number of advantages compared to traditional solutions in the field. In the new e-book, Sennheiser explores the advantages that Wi-Fi-based systems can offer to students, faculty and staff. Worldwide, tens of thousands of students with a hearing impairment attend university, often with legislation that mandates that technical equipment is provided to ensure their full inclusion. With easy access to Wi-Fi

having become students’ most important tech resource for studying, the move towards Wi-Fi-based assistive listening systems such as MobileConnect from Sennheiser is a logical next step.

According to the German manufacturer, Wi-Fi-based assistive listening systems offer substantial advantages over traditional systems, notably in installation. In contrast, assistive listening over Wi-Fi works simply: the lecturer

speaks into a microphone, the audio signal travels to an AV station and is broadcast via the existing local Wi-Fi network. Students can use their own smartphone with confidence to listen via an app, freeing them to sit anywhere they like. Using their own smartphones with an app, students listen to the audio via headphones, hearing aids or cochlear implants. Besides low cost of installation and maintenance, Wi-Fibased systems are also easily scalable and can integrate readily with existing AV equipment. You can download the Transforming the University Experience with Assistive Listening over Wi-Fi e-book from the manufacturer’s website. www.sennheiser.com

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23/04/2021 14:56


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NEWS: APPOINTMENTS

CTME expands Venue Services department with dual appointments

N V

MIDDLE EAST

Dailos Rodriguez Creative Technology Middle East (CTME) has announced two new additions to its newly formed Venue Services department. Dailos

Rodriguez has recently joined the company as the venue operations manager for the Venue Services department, while Mark Johnson joins in the role of business development manager for the new department. Rodriguez possesses 24 years’ experience in the hospitality and audiovisual industry and has worked across multiple venues. He has secured various high-profile contracts during his time and implemented in-house audiovisual services for some of the Middle East’s biggest hotel chains. Having already built up two successful AV venue services companies in the past, Rodriguez’s knowledge and skillset make him a great addition to the team, says CTME. “It is a great honour joining the CT team, and I look forward to getting started on the variety of fantastic projects we already have lined up,” he commented.

Mark Johnson With 19 years’ experience in the audiovisual hospitality industry, Johnson also brings a wealth of knowledge and

experience to his role as business development manager. During his time, he has secured several large-scale contracts across various venues and has been a key factor in the growth and development of many different audiovisual venue services throughout the region. His ability to provide clients with the right technology to suit their needs and understanding of venue requirements across the Middle East is said to make him per fect for the role. “It’s very endearing to be a part of Creative Technology’s new Venue Services department from conception,” commented Johnson. “I look forward to accomplishing many new firsts with CTME.”

RO fou role on and inv pro ma

www.ctme.co

Paul Hadfield joins Area Four Industries Middle East MIDDLE EAST

Industry veteran Paul Hadfield has joined Area Four Industries Middle East (A4IME) as its new sales manager. Hadfield is well known in the region having worked as distributor manager for the Prolyte Group for the last decade, extensively travelling the region while looking after the company’s UK, African and Middle East sales networks. “With Paul joining our young enthusiastic team, we benefit from many years of industry experience and technical knowhow,” commented A4IME general manager, Kevin Boujikian. “We are extremely pleased to have him as part of the Area Four Industries Middle East family and look forward to developing the business further together and supporting our customers across the Middle East region.” Working in the industry for the past 20 years, Hadfield has held a number of previous technical sales roles with trussing and rigging manufacturers throughout his career, including TOMCAT, PCM (now Lift Turn Move), AC Entertainment Technologies

and Litestructures, which then became part of the Prolyte Group. “During my time looking after the Middle East, I developed a very good friendship with Kevin Boujikian of Provision AVL, Prolyte’s regional distributor,” commented Hadfield. “Then the pandemic overtook our world and devastated our beloved industry. Kevin and I kept in touch during those early days of the Covid era and, when I departed Prolyte at the end of summer, I discussed joining him and the team at a newly formed company, A4IME.” With Prolyte having been acquired by Area Four Industries and incorporated into its group of brands in late 2019, Hadfield’s extensive prior experience with the Dutch trussing brand made him the ideal addition to the A4IME team. “Being part of A4IME feels like a very natural progression for my career and life and I have relocated to Dubai to help the team and to support the regional industry growth,” added Hadfield. “There’s plenty to be excited about being here in the

Jas

“I lea and ma as sai ach tha cur fut In Ra now L–R: Kevin Boujikian and Paul Hadfield region at the moment – Dubai EXPO, which is just around the corner, Qatar World Cup 2022 and KSA 2030 Vision, as well as all the new venue installations that we are involved in at present. And all of this is not even taking in account live events when

they can restart again. I’m relishing the challenges ahead and delighted to be here as part of an exciting future for Area Four Industries Middle East.” www.areafourindustries.me

Steven Simpson to manage ME market for Datapath MIDDLE EAST

Former Mitsubishi Middle East BDM and projects manager Steven Simpson has moved to Datapath and will take charge of managing the Middle East market as the company’s new Middle East sales and account manager. Having lived and worked in the region for over 17 years, Simpson brings extensive experience to the position. His remit includes UAE, KSA, Qatar, Oman, Kuwait, Bahrain, Jordan, Lebanon and Egypt, where he will manage Datapath’s key accounts while expanding its customer base with new oppor tunities. With successful spells both in sales and project management, his CV includes

Steven Simpson

previous tenures with Crestron and, more recently, Mitsubishi. “Datapath have worked closely with Mitsubishi over the past eight years and, from both a people and product perspective, I know the Datapath team ver y well,” he commented. “Throughout this time, I have been impressed with their reliability and suppor t in general and so I’m ver y happy to come and work for a company that, as well as making great products, places such impor tance on customer ser vice.” Datapath’s VP global sales, David Griffiths, added his satisfaction on bringing Simpson to the team: “I have

known Steve for several years from his time at Mitsubishi and I’m delighted to have his extensive experience with us here at Datapath. His knowledge of AV markets in the Middle East is second to none and we are thrilled to have him join our global team. “Projects in the Middle East continue to receive investment and the market shows steady growth despite the challenges of Covid-19,” Griffiths added. “We are wholly confident we have the right person in place to drive the Datapath brand throughout the region.” www.datapath.co.uk

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d

NEWS: APPOINTMENTS

New role for ROE Visual founder WORLD

ROE Visual has announced that its founder Jason Lu is stepping up to a new role within the wider Unilumin group, taking on a role as president for ROE Visual and member of the board. He remains involved in rolling out strategic plans and product development for the LED product manufacturer.

he didn’t have a specific vision for the company, but understood the need to offer something different to what was available. “Working with our customers and partners over the years, I appreciate their continued trust and loyalty, establishing friendships out of business relations,”

Jason Lu

Chen Zhu

“It’s with pride and confidence that I can leave the day-to-day business to a solid and experienced team and can focus on matters that are close to my heart, such as product development and strategy,” said Lu. “I’m proud of the company’s achievements over the years, and am thankful to have laid out the basis for its current success and foundation for a bright future.” In 2006, just out of college, Lu started Radiant Opto Electronic Technology – now ROE Visual – in Shenzhen. Initially,

said Lu. “It’s with great assurance and trust in our globally located teams that I retreat from daily business and leave them to conduct business, maintain our clients and partner relationships, and drive the company’s success forward.” Chen Zhu, previously COO of ROE Visual China, has now been given the role of CEO, while Frank Montero and Roelof Bouwman continue to lead the US and EU sales offices.

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Alain Boone joins Arbane Groupe as international sales manager WORLD

Arbane Groupe has hired industry veteran Alain Boone as its new international sales manager. Boone, formerly of loudspeaker manufacturer Nexo, will oversee the development of an exclusive distribution network for Arbane Groupe and its brands – APG and Active Audio – as well as maintaining existing relationships with the company’s historical partners worldwide. Boone has been active in the pro audio industry for more than 30 years, making the shift from concert touring and system engineering to work as a product/sales manager in the Benelux region for audio distributor EML/AudioXL, before going on to

serve as Nexo’s EMEA sales manager for six years. “I’ve spent many years maintaining and optimising relationships between distributors and manufacturers, all the while integrating products into customers’ projects to ensure that they are carried out as efficiently as possible,” said Boone. “My engineering experience has also given me the ability to provide customers with technical as well as commercial guidance, all the way from the inception of a project to its final deliver y.” Boone will be repor ting to Arbane Groupe CEO Régis Cazin and will work ver y closely with the entire Arbane Groupe team, par ticularly the R&D and suppor t/ marketing depar tments. One of his primar y tasks will be identifying par tners which might benefit from the introduction of both the APG and Active Audio brands into their projects. “We are ver y proud to have Alain on board,” commented Cazin. “His experience, his knowledge of technologies and markets, as well as a ver y large international network of customers who trust him will be great assets for our brands. The company is continuing its international transformation to ensure strong and regular growth, which will be achieved by the contribution of people with exper tise in our businesses. This is the case for Alain, and we are thrilled to welcome him to the Arbane Groupe to become par t of our adventure.”

Alain Boone

www.arbane-groupe.com

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23/04/2021 15:39


NEWS: SPECIAL REPORT

to the one o comin the U comin range ability with o short

Virtu

The suppo throu very f end u adds The Exper

Innovating the sales experience

Crestron’s direct relationship with the EMEA market has evolved in recent years leading to the emergence of a dedicated sales agency with big plans for the Middle East AT THE START OF 2019, CRESTRON remodelled its way of working in EMEA whereby it began direct distribution of its products in the region through its new subsidiary, Crestron Europe. With Crestron Europe directly responsible for the supply, support and training of its products, Technological Innovations Group was quickly born as the exclusive EMEA sales agency for Crestron, focusing entirely on Crestron customer sales needs and seeking to provide them with the best possible customer experience. Over the past two years, TIG has expanded its sales teams throughout EMEA and is in the process of opening Experience Spaces in London, Frankfurt, Paris, Johannesburg, Dubai, Oslo and Moscow to welcome end users and integrators, and allow them to experience the best Crestron has to offer in both the residential and commercial worlds. Better known as TIG, Technological Innovations Group is a relatively new kid on the block; however, the company’s roots in the AV industry date back much further. Many will already be familiar with the name Robin van Meeuwen, who for more than 25 years was essentially the face of Crestron in EMEA. Headed by van Meeuwen, the fledgling TIG remains closely tied with the American manufacturer as its sales arm. “This new relationship works very well as TIG does what it has always done best: sales!” comments van Meeuwen. “The industry-leading products, supply, support and training services are what Crestron is best known for, so to keep these in-house with Crestron Europe was the most logical decision,” recalls Annelies Kampert, general manager of Crestron Europe. “Meanwhile,

Robin van Meeuwen

The company’s flasgship experience centre in Frankfurt which will be replicated in Dubai and Johannesburg later this year

Renaat de Wilde

there was no one better to take on the sales responsibilities than Robin and his team, who have a wealth of experience selling Crestron products and a superb track record over nearly three decades. The passions of each individual for what we provide is truly second-to-none and it’s a pleasure to work with such an enthusiastic and successful group of professionals.” Combined with a team of 140 staff spread across 12 offices in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, TIG is able to combine its extensive market experience built up over many years working with Crestron with the fresh perspective more akin to that of

a start-up company. Key to its transition has been the collection of a number of complementary brands targeting the Smart Spaces arena that support Crestron projects. As Middle East sales director, Renaat de Wilde has his finger on the pulse locally and has witnessed strong demand for Crestron in most sectors TIG is active in since the pandemic. “The current demand is widespread and growing right across the Middle East,” he explains. “We’ve seen strong growth in demand in the government and education sectors, and hospitality is finally picking up again after a soft year due

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NEWS: SPECIAL REPORT to the pandemic. We expect hospitality to be one of the main drivers for growth over the coming years, especially in Saudi Arabia and the UAE. This is the result of many things coming together: Crestron’s ever-widening range of high-quality products and our ability to fulfil in time despite challenges with obtaining components due to global shortages.”

throughout EMEA has been somewhat delayed by the events of 2020. Inviting people to explore and experience TIG’s portfolio first-hand hasn’t been possible in recent months and the company was forced to get creative and instead take the experience to customers directly, with the launch of a Virtual Experience Space on TIG’s website back in June.

The TIG portfolio of brands

Virtual Experience Space The focus for TIG in 2021 is to improve support of its vendors and integrators throughout the region. “Our regional team is very focused on working closely with all our end users, consultants and partners alike,” adds de Wilde. The initial plan to open a series of Experience Spaces in select locations

“Last year, in the middle of lockdown, we launched TIG’s London Experience Space. Because we couldn’t physically open, we instead developed a Virtual Experience Space, which was very quirky and lovely, and really helped us to introduce people to what we are doing. We also opened a store in Frankfurt, our flagship store – which is

absolutely huge – and just recently opened another in Paris,” says van Meeuwen. “We are very aware that, as a sales agency, we’ve got to make sure people can see our products, they can touch, feel and play around with them. We wanted to make exploring the Crestron portfolio in this way accessible to our customers in all regions.” The pandemic has affected individuals and businesses in a variety of different ways. For TIG, the affect has not only been a disruption to the way its business conversations take place, but also a change in the way the products it markets are deployed and operated. “The new workplace will never be as it was before,” says the Middle East sales director. “We expect that companies will downsize their regular workspaces – emails can be managed from home – whereas the demand for smart meeting rooms will be driven by the need to come together to collaborate. Most of our new projects will come from Saudi, the UAE and Egypt, largely driven by ambitious

government plans to bring these countries to the next level over the next 15–20 years.” TIG places great emphasis on the Middle East and Africa markets to its future success and the new Experience Spaces in South Africa and the UAE will play a major role. “We are launching a number of new initiatives,” explains de Wilde. “Our Dubai Experience Space will be completely revamped by July, we are now also providing discounted (and, depending on the order size, free) freight to the Middle East and we are hiring additional market experts to support our current growth. We invite our dealers and end users, and anybody really, to come and have a look at the Crestron portfolio.” The restructured relationship is clearly working out to both parties’ advantages. “It’s fair to say that Crestron is now the number one brand for professional AV solutions for the meeting and collaboration room market in the region,” surmises de Wilde. “I’m pleased to say that we are doing extremely well, but I personally believe we can still improve. To realise our goals, we need to focus on the right end users, the relevant consultants and we need to continue building our network of trusted partners. As I always say: our partners are part of our extended sales team and they are like family to us. Without them, we can’t be as successful as we are. Our team will continue to grow to support these ambitions.” www.tig.eu

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NEWS: SPECIAL REPORT

Are businesses prepared for virtual conferencing?

SPONSORED BY

rooms to perform tasks, such as: connecting or disconnecting personal computers, adjusting in-room device volume and power cycling or repositioning tabletop audio devices – essential in current “socially distanced” workspaces. Furthermore, users will not need to call an administrator to perform these functions.

EVEN BEFORE THE BUSINESS CLIMATE WE ARE ALL IN TODAY, companies have been eager to adopt virtual meetings as a way to increase collaboration internally or conduct global meetings more efficiently. In a recent survey Shure conducted with Illuminas, two-thirds of business professionals believe their employers lack the right conferencing technology. One-third of enterprise meetings have technical issues and users are often challenged working with conferencing technology. Over one-third of users are spending valuable time escalating these issues to technical experts weekly or even daily. Four out of five main frustrations with virtual meetings relate to audio – background noise, echo, sound cutting out and not being able to hear the other meeting participants. As a result of these technical issues, 82% said they have experienced negative consequences, including rescheduled calls, damage to brand reputation or loss of customer trust. So, because of these factors, Shure believes more focus will be placed on improving the technology involved with virtual meetings. A new white paper by leading consulting and research firm Frost & Sullivan (F&S) explores interesting new data in this space. In “7 Steps to Improve Virtual Meetings in the New Era of Work”, F&S assess the impact of new workplace demands and cloud adoption on audio equipment and services. It points out that a range of events, from the Covid-19 pandemic and civil unrest, to extreme weather conditions, have created a huge demand for virtual collaboration capabilities.

AV conferencing: anywhere, anytime The objective of this rethink will be to power “anywhere connectivity and anytime collaboration that enables agile teams and processes”. More and more organisations are beginning with cloudenabled technologies and pairing these with modern audiovisual (AV) solutions.

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For administrators: Remote management of correctly configured meeting room audio solutions empowers support staff with full control from anywhere, while eliminating the need to physically visit rooms for: audio settings adjustments (microphone pickup and speaker output range), repositioning tabletop devices, running diagnostics checks, performing software updates and MACDs, and remotely power cycling devices. With the ability to proactively perform these tasks from anywhere at any time, administrators will receive fewer help desk tickets. It’s also important that whatever audio system and solution choices you make, the tech is easily upgradable for compatibility with new technology and different brands.

What else can business leaders do?

High-quality audio is essential in this respect. There are a number of important audio design considerations when rethinking your meeting rooms to achieve flawless audio. These include: the room acoustics, number of in-room participants, attendance of remote participants, visual display placement, collaboration tools (audio, web/video conferencing, content sharing), potential noise pollution sources (such as thin walls, busy hallways, etc.) and ease of installation, use and management.

Audio systems driving efficiency Flawless audio is a key contributor to meeting efficiency, the lack of which is a cause for concern in many organisations. More than 70% of senior managers agree that meetings are unproductive and inefficient. So, what difference does flawless audio make: For users: Appropriately configured room audio devices allow users to focus on the information and discussion at hand and limit the need to touch audio equipment in shared meeting

There are several tips businesses can follow to improve ease of use and secure collaboration for their conferencing capabilities: Get organised: with the need for the workforce to reduce commuting and travelling, virtual meetings are essential. Make sure that you and your employees have the tools to plan and conduct remote meetings at a moment’s notice. Schedules and restrictions are changing very quickly but face-to-face meetings can become virtual meetings instantly, if you have the technology and training. Use the right equipment: use the technology available to you to make sure those talking around a table or in a conference room can be seen and heard by those participating remotely. Make sure employees have all the right equipment at home – laptop, earphones or headphones with good communication capabilities, and a quiet room to work in. Don’t accept “good enough” – old-fashioned gear isn’t up to virtual conferencing needs and expectations today. Aspire to broadcast-quality sound so that users can actually optimise the experience and their productivity. Give everyone a voice: can your remote workers participate in a meeting? If they can’t, they will feel disconnected and productivity may be impacted. Make sure people joining the meeting from home have a good experience. Help them to engage by asking them questions, ensuring that they don’t feel left out. Also, consider scheduling more frequent checkin meetings with your teams. Regular meetings can help employees feel a stronger sense of collaboration when they can’t be in the office.

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FEATURES: INSTALLATION

Controlling the outcome

Techno Q delivers the biggest Active Field Control solution to date as it puts the client in full control at QUSEC QATAR UNIVERSITY SPORT AND EVENTS COMPLEX (QUSEC) is the biggest venue of its kind in the Middle East. Not only has its cutting-edge audio technology won awards for systems integrator and installer Techno Q, the venue is also home to the largest fixed installation ever supplied by NEXO with its sound reinforcement products. QUSEC further exemplifies the technical synergy between Yamaha’s Active Field Control (AFC) system and NEXO loudspeaker technology. The QUSEC facility on Qatar University’s campus in Doha is celebrated as a ground-breaking project of space versatility. Its design philosophy set about creating a multifunctional building which serves as a sports venue for curriculum activities at the same time as being a multipurpose hall accommodating presentation ceremonies, major sports and other events, such as functions and exhibitions. The complex is comprised of multiple adaptable rooms surrounding the pivotal Multipurpose Hall, which can host ceremonial and staged events for an audience of 5,000; multiple sporting events for 3,200 (with variable field-ofplay layouts to accommodate multiple court spaces using suspended curtains); or banquets for 900 – all by means of retractable seating, lighting, rigging, ceiling, suspended curtains and 30m x 9m of portable staging. Including the adjacent 36m x 67m Training Hall, the QUSEC complex can accommodate more than 30 fixed and portable sport courts for volleyball, basketball, indoor tennis, futsal, badminton, squash and handball. In this 25,500m2 ensemble, a multitude of architectural, acoustical lighting and audiovisual technologies come together to create facilities with exceptional spatial flexibility. Techno Q was brought in from the outset to provide complete integration of the AV and public address systems, broadcast system, scoreboards, IPTV and digital signage, stage lighting, interpretation system and a sophisticated adjustable-height

The Multipurpose Hall scenic lighting solution covering the main hall’s ceiling. A Yamaha/NEXO audio system design with multiple sources has been implemented in both the Multipurpose Hall and the Training Hall, switchable between big sporting competitions or intimate staged events, either focusing on the group or the individual to create different ambiences from the solemn to the dramatic. The huge multifunctional hall is characterised by its 70m x 40m retractable ceiling comprised of 80 5m2 scenic lighting panels. These were designed and customised by Techno Q to fit the complicated ceiling alongside a number of other services, including the HVAC and fire system. The panels are grouped and connected to motors and shafts allowing the end user to position them at different

A Yam

Techno Q senior project manager Mohanad Is-Hak heights – 10m from the floor in events mode and 12.5m in sports mode, as per FIBA requirements. Techno Q’s senior project manager Mohanad Is-Hak was involved in the project from the first day, charged with delivering the scalable audiovisual system that could keep up with the building’s physical flexibility. Aside from the adjustable ceiling, the extensive multifunctional Yamaha AFC acoustic conditioning system, using NEXO loudspeakers, is a highlight of the design. “At first, we only had basic plans and artistic renderings for the building, so the first priority was a deep study of every element of the project,” explains Is-Hak. “Motorising more than 70 tons of ceiling panels that included a sophisticated lighting system, acoustic materials and the

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FEATURES: INSTALLATION

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AFC system – and ensuring complete sound harmonisation at all ceiling levels – was beyond any difficulties we’d imagined. We had to do a lot of acoustic studies, audio modelling and simulations to make sure that we would achieve what we are aiming for. In addition, we had only nine months to design and build everything.” The various configurations each have their own options for audio ambience, and Techno Q worked closely with Yamaha to implement the AFC system, which facilitates natural reverb time for every audience seat to deliver an exciting crowd experience. QUSEC is the largest AFC system of its kind in the world. For the primary FOH system, used for ceremonies and banquets, Techno Q chose NEXO’s STM Series modular line array. The dual 8-inch STM M28s are flown in L-R positions with seven modules with two S118 sub-bass cabinets in each line. The ability to lower or retract the nine-element pairs of line arrays greatly enhances various ambiences. The clusters can also be moved to match various seating plans or lifted into a “parking position” above the ceiling grid when they are not needed.

AV control is achievable from any location in the field via tielines in distributed broadcast boxes

also works for general public address and BGM. A further 30 PS15-R2s are mounted inside the side and end walls, spaced 8m apart, adding important sound information to the “dry room”. Such a high density of wall speakers prepares the AFC system for possible use in concert mode. The Training Hall is also equipped with temporary event rigging points in the ceiling in order to handle a variety of stage locations and events requirements, as well as large LED scoreboards synchronised to the broadcast and in-house cameras. In sports mode, all speakers are activated and receive varying gain and delay according to source proximity, with the signal processed to create additional reflected energy through wall and ceiling speakers. General reverb provides both extra loudness and spaciousness to the entire room to enhance the live atmosphere. Additional dedicated supporter microphones amplify crowd energy to maximise the experience and stimulate the players. To further aid flexibility of operations in the highly configurable spaces, Techno Q provided 38 broadcast boxes distributed throughout the building to connect the different locations together, as well as to OB vans for outside broadcasting. These tie back to the OBTC room, which is reachable by media trucks. Furthermore, these boxes also provide internal audio and video transmission through portable racks as per an event’s requirements, allowing control of the AVL systems from any location in the field. Portable media convertors facilitate the transport of AV and broadcast signals between locations using dual LC Opticon tieline connections that can support 3G HD-SDI, HDMI, Ethernet and audio. “All sound system modules and I/O devices are integrated into a networked system to minimise the complexities of routing and maximise flexibility,” notes Is-Hak.

A Yamaha CL5 and MA Lighting MA2 onPC control the audio and lighting respectively

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There is a sport competition mode, which uses a separate arena FOH sound system comprising a central cluster of NEXO GEO S1210-ST long-throw line array modules located high above the field of play, with coverage aimed at the main seating areas in the retractable stands. Two arrays of six cabinets are located in this position using specially developed Stadium Sound versions of the GEO S12 module. A dedicated system is provided to cover the balcony areas using 29 GEO M6 modules. The AFC system is implemented throughout the Multipurpose Hall using more than 60 high-power NEXO 10-inch and 15-inch PS Series cabinets in the side walls of the venue and the back wall behind the main audience seating. It can be used as the Exhibition PA or when there is an event with a large, seated audience, such as a sports competition, combined with the distributed NEXO RS15 subwoofer system to simulate reverberant low-frequency energy and create additional excitement by emphasising crowd noise. This aspect of the main hall’s audio system is described as “luxurious”, as there is a dedicated AFC Supporter Enhancement System, using six flown arrays of four GEO M10 cabinets, combined with highpower 15-inch point source cabinets on the floor to provide a fully immersive audience experience for live sport. In a tennis match, for example, the sound of the ball hitting the racquet is localised by microphones and reproduced by the loudspeaker matrix. Flown clusters and floor speakers provide early reflections, ceiling speakers provide general loudness and sound locations clearly pan from side to side through the flown and floor speakers on each side of the court. Further accentuating the action are large LED high-brightness 6mm videowalls flown at opposite corners of the hall serving as scoreboards during games or as an integrated video solution capable of displaying video, show replays and presentations. Furthermore, the LED displays are

synchronised to the broadcast and in-house camera systems for live viewing. The Multipurpose Hall also features a fully portable stage module with adjustable height. A mix of wash and profile stage lights from Martin Professional cover the 30m x 9m stage area, suspended from lighting trusses on the catwalk that can be lowered as per event needs and raised to the parking position during sports use. Situated at the centre of the mezzanine floor, the hall’s control room has bi-fold windows allowing it to occupy the same acoustic space for engineers as well as an unrestricted view of spectator areas and the field of play. The control room provides full AV for the Multipurpose Hall via a Yamaha CL5 mixing console and MA Lighting MA2 onPC, with the control achievable from any location in the field via tielines in broadcast boxes distributed throughout the building. The Training Hall can be completely sealed off from the main hall and can be presented in several different modes to cater for sport, ceremonies and theatre, or a seated banquet for 600. To facilitate this, there are two separate FOH systems that can also be used together, and a Yamaha AFC system of ceiling-mounted and wall-mounted NEXO loudspeakers. When the room is used in its “long room” layouts, the main FOH PA consists of a NEXO STM Series line array with L-R clusters of eight M28s and two S118 subs each, plus six PS15-R2 front-fill monitors. A second line array system using GEO S1210 cabinets is designated as the “wide room FOH” and used for banquets, assemblies and presentations, providing high intelligibility sound coverage to go with the large LED scoreboard. The AFC ceiling-based system creates a general diffused energy field throughout the venue, using 60 NEXO PS15-R2 loudspeaker sources mounted in the ceiling to provide even coverage across the entire floor. Primarily deployed as a direct coverage PA when the hall is hosting an exhibition, the system

Nestled among the complicated ceiling architecture are flown arrays of GEO M10 cabinets for the dedicated AFC Supporter Enhancement System Further maximising the building’s appeal, Techno Q has integrated Williams Sound Hearing HotSpot assistive listening and translations systems throughout the building, allowing hard-of-hearing users to receive floor audio through the building’s Wi-Fi system by connecting their smartphones to the network or via neck loop headsets. The Clear-Com intercom system allows the event management team and broadcasters to communicate while moving around the building freely. In summary, QUSEC sees 320 NEXO loudspeakers from eight different product families combine to make up its FOH systems, nine early reflection systems and two reverberation systems. It is described as an impressive example of Yamaha AFC technology working with NEXO loudspeaker and power amplifier systems, with Yamaha Gulf and NEXO’s Engineering Support Division heavily involved in the design and tuning/ commissioning stages. “We chose Yamaha and NEXO because they are the best combination for this project,” concludes Is-Hak. “The combination of the best system ‘brain’ with the best speakers delivers exceptional clarity and smoothness. Without their support, we would never have delivered a solution that the university summed up in simply one word: ‘Wow’.” www.nexo-sa.com www.technoq.com www.yamaha.com

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More from less The main draw at Goose is its cosy bar and extensive cocktail selection

A project doesn’t have to be the biggest and best to strike the right chord. At Istanbul’s Goose No 25, consideration is key, and less is more AS BARS AND RESTAURANTS IN PARTICULAR SEEK TO fully open back up in the coming months, owners can’t simply be content with the same-old standard offerings. Instead, a strong brand identity combined with niche and unusual touches, such as those that can be found inside Istanbul’s newly launched Goose No 25 bar and restaurant, is far more likely to grab patrons’ attentions. Particularly when the clients you’re courting will settle for nothing but the best. Located in Kuruçeşme, a beautiful neighbourhood on the European side of the Bosporus, Goose No 25’s special draw is an impeccably designed interior environment created by design studio Laxmi Interiors. The agency has played a hand in the success of several of Turkey’s most popular venues in the hospitality and commercial sectors. “Laxmi Interiors creates places of peace and joy, offering holistic designs,” explains the company. “And the right accessories and furniture are the key elements for such a creation.” Such notions, of course, extend to the venue’s loudspeaker system as a vital element in creating the right atmosphere for clients. Responsible for many of the best nightclub audio systems in Turkey and neighbouring territories, HEC Professional was approached by the Goose owners at the end of 2020, during

the midst of a thorough overhaul of its cosy and compact space in order to specify a new audio solution that was not only highly functional, but also offered a superior aesthetic design matching Laxmi’s vision. “It was our first time working with the head of Laxmi Interiors, Pınar Hacıarifoğlu, though we had heard a lot about the company,” recalls Berk Ozan, HEC Professional project manager. “They have done many successful projects over the last years. Denizhan Katagan, Laxmi Interiors’ manager, worked closely with us on this project and they’ve done incredible work. It was very exciting to be involved at this amazing location.” While the new establishment sports a top-class kitchen and great food, Goose’s main focus is its impressive selection of cocktails, and the action inside typically centres around the bar. But from 10pm onwards, a DJ steps thing up another notch. The atmosphere can quickly elevate as the night draws on and the venue speaker system needs to keep pace. “We have supplied audio, visual and lighting systems to a large number of restaurant and bar projects throughout Istanbul,” furthers Ozan. “Because of our reputation in this regard, Serhan Akinci, who is one of the top entertainment managers of Istanbul, contacted us to support his newest

project – Goose No 25. We quickly shook hands for this project following a couple of meetings onsite and in our showroom.” Upon entering the establishment, the interior works in tandem with the lighting and sound to teleport patrons back to a more nostalgic period. Customers can while away the hours enjoying a selection of 80s and 90s music while lighting dances across a stained-glass Renaissance-style ceiling installation reinterpreted by Sedef Gali dominating the space overhead. Outside in the garden, terracotta walls, patterned ceramics, straw armchairs and white iron lightings recreate the feelings of relaxing in Marrakesh. “The beautiful music coming from the impeccable sound system matches perfectly with the dreamy ambience,” notes Ozan. Given the immaculate interior created by Hacıarifoğlu, when it came time to specify a sound reinforcement system capable of not only delivering refined background music throughout the compact space, but also handling the high SPLs the venue is expecting to reach later into the night, HEC had no hesitation in pitching an Archon solution from Italian manufacturer FBT. As the exclusive distributor for FBT in Turkey, Ozan and his team have completed a number of past projects successfully with the

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FEATURES: INSTALLATION products and have also been busy creating fully showable mock recreations of the various brands and technologies it supports. For FBT, the distributor really pulled out the stops by designing and constructing a complete mock bar/nightclub scenario inside its Istanbul HQ. Typically, at fancy restaurants and high-level outlets such as Goose, the owners can be quite particular in their requirements, which can either be a good or bad scenario depending on circumstances. Following HEC’s impressive demos and having worked with Akinci on multiple hospitality projects in the past, Ozan was given free reign to create an audio system of his choosing. “They completely believed in us, maybe too much,” he jokes. “We brought them to our showroom and did a complete demonstration of the various FBT configurations that would be suitable for the restaurant. They loved the Archon system, and we instantly did a deal.” With just 90m2 of total floorspace, it isn’t the solution’s vast coverage of the venue that is turning heads, but rather its holistic integration within the design. “Everything from the style of the cabinets to the quality of their output blends perfectly with what Laxmi had in mind for Goose,” describes Ozan. Covering the diminutive 50m2 interior restaurant are six Archon 106 full-range passive loudspeakers capable of outputting up to 191dB SPL, paired with QSA 112A Active Constant Curvature array sub-bass cabinets. Power is from FBT AX series amplifiers and audio processing from a Marani DPA 260A processor. The remaining outside garden area receives milder reinforcement from IP55-rated weatherresistant FBT Shadow 105 speakers. The renovation was completed in late 2020, leaving the venue ready to open its doors as soon as lockdown rules were relaxed. With restaurants still limited to a 7pm curfew with adequate social distancing, Goose’s owners have still as yet been able to witness the system’s full potential, but Ozan is confident in its capabilities. “We still can’t really go out at the moment here, so although the project is completely ModuloPi-ProAVLMEA-MJ2021-REVISED.pdf 1 20/04/2021 15:30:22 finished, it may be some time before the owners are able to

The Morrocan-style outside garden see how well everything functions at full capacity. Regardless, our experience in deploying Archon loudspeakers at many of Istanbul’s top nightclub makes us fully confident in the system’s capabilities.” The result is that since its limited opening, Goose No 25 has quickly gained popularity with Istanbul’s wealthiest residents. “These people want quality,” says Ozan. “Before we became involved in the project, there was a competing tender from a very popular, but much more expensive, brand. As soon as they got a chance to hear the FBT equipment first-hand in our nightclub, they immediately chose us.”

Naturally, given the thorough preview of FBT’s catalogue, the owner’s limited real-life experience of the new system so far has already dutifully met his high expectations. “They were completely satisfied with the end result,” says the project manager. “It was a total success and has already led to future work with Laxmi Interiors. We’re looking for ward to many more successful installations with them in the future.” www.fbt.it www.hecpro.net

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Infinity des Lumières, Dubai | Culturespaces Digital®

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FEATURES: INSTALLATION

Infinity des Lumières

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The GCC’s largest digital arts venue is set to open its doors in Dubai imminently. Pro AVL MEA takes a tour of the technology powering its immersive exhibits

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The colour accuracy and vibrancy of the projected images was vital to the exhibit’s success BLENDING ONE OF THE WORLD’S OLDEST AND MOST refined pastimes with a refreshingly modern twist, a new digital art centre under construction inside Dubai Mall is the perfect addition to the city’s selection of futuristic exhibits. Digital art has become a popular attraction in recent years, providing an inclusive, immersive and one-of-a-kind cultural experience that employs the latest in technology to transform the way we perceive and understand art. A collaboration between InfinityArt and Culturespaces Digital, Infinity des Lumières will showcase a variety of contemporary and classic art across 2,700m2 of exhibition space. Bringing the exhibits to life is an impressive collection of audiovisual technology that includes 130 video projectors, 58 loudspeakers, 47 media servers and approximately 3,000 HD digital moving images. When it finally opens its doors, Infinity des Lumières will become the largest and most advanced digital arts venue in the GCC.

A total of 3,000 HD moving images are projected across the venue

The new Dubai venue is heavily inspired by Culturespaces’ existing digital galleries and echoes a similar layout and experience as the Atelier des Lumières in Paris, which opened its doors in Spring 2018. Culturespaces has been producing digital immersive exhibitions since 2012 at a number of locations that also include the Bassins de Lumières in Bordeaux and the Bunker des Lumières in South Korea. “We worked with Culturespaces on the content creation, so there are certain elements here that are identical to Paris and there are certain elements that we have changed and adapted because we think they will work better for the market here,” explains Infinity des Lumières’ head of AV, Steve Critchley, who joined the team in October 2020 and has since spearheaded the technical aspects of the project. French systems integrator Cadmos was heavily involved in the Atelier des Lumières installation, and its experience was called on once again for the Dubai project. The Atelier project set the framework in terms of technology requirements but,

with several years having passed since its completion, a number of new products and technologies have since entered the market. Construction inside the mall started in earnest in July 2020 before the second lockdown in Dubai brought everything to a halt. “There was a three-month period where construction had to stop,” recalls Critchley. “Since then, we’ve had about six more weeks of planning, changing quite a few elements around, and a further six weeks for the installation. We’re at a point now where everything is installed and tested, we’ve run the shows and found the problems with the content. There’s just little tweaks left before we open the doors in the summer.” Infinity des Lumières is divided up into two separate exhibitions: the main gallery displaying a series of Van Gogh exhibits comprising 163 digital artworks of the popular Dutch impressionist, including Dreamed Japan, an immersive exhibit that transforms as you move about the space; and a

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FEATURES: INSTALLATION contemporary room displaying Verse, a journey of the senses created by Thomas Vanz which combines images of the cosmos amplified with the harmonies of an orchestral piece. Projectors beam the curated and customised multimedia content across the gallery’s walls and floors to immerse visitors fully, and historic artworks take on a new lease of life as they morph their way across the 3,300m2 digital “canvas”. “We started by looking at what they’d done in Paris and trying to slot that design into our space,” notes the head of AV. “The gallery in Paris is 2.5m taller, so there were a lot of changes that needed to take place. The projectors are lower and closer to the walls, which meant new lens calculations and things like that. Paris is also a dedicated space rather than inside a mall, so we needed an entirely new sound design that was appropriate for the location.” In order to mitigate this factor, all the exterior walls of Infinity des Lumières have been acoustically treated with the subwoofers placed on suspension springs to dampen vibrations through the floor. “The mall is actually really well built; it’s surprising how little leakage we have,” adds Critchley. “The very first thing we did was turn everything up to 11 and thankfully didn’t disturb any of the neighbouring stores whatsoever.”

A 20-point NEXO speaker system delivers the accompanying soundscape

130 Barco projectors bathe the space in digital artwork

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An immersive audio setup provides moving soundscapes in each gallery to accompany the visuals. “We’re running 20 channels of audio through 60 speakers throughout the main exhibition space,” explains Critchley. “Because of the way we’ve built it, we have the option of configuring everything as a 20-point system or we could just run it as a simple left-right stereo output if we wanted to, or anything in between.” This is made possible by a dedicated Yamaha MRX7-D signal processer for each separate area that can be controlled directly via MCP1 on-wall touchpanels. Audio reinforcement through the galleries is via 43 NEXO ID24T distributed loudspeakers and 15 ID S110 subwoofers placed on suspension springs, while audio paging can be accomplished via the Yamaha PGM1 paging microphone. Central to the project on the visual side has been the choice of projector and media server capable of delivering the rich content. With an extensive number of Barco projectors powering the Paris exhibition, the Belgian manufacturer remained the company of choice at Infinity des Lumières, but has been able to roll out its latest and greatest models. “Everything here makes use of laser-based projection, whereas Paris is in the process of converting over at the minute,” says Critchley. “While they’re running 5,000-lumen

Steve Critchley, head of AV, Infinity des Lumières

models in general, our exhibit is powered by Barco’s 10,000-lumen projectors, which means we can achieve much greater contrast and overall a much more vibrant image.” The Infinity des Lumières team tested a number of different models with image quality ultimately being the deciding factor. “The French team originally spec’d 6K models for Dubai, but we were adamant that we wanted the best brightness and clarity achievable, which led us to the Barco G60,” he furthers. “They’re a great unit; I am really quite impressed.” The G60s are hung from the ceiling using custom plates and mounted with a Chief mounting system to pillars throughout the venue to project onto the walls. The digital content is stored on three Modulo Kinetic Designer media servers from Modulo Pi – a main Designer Unit, a backup Designer and a dedicated server for privatisation purposes. A total of 44 Modulo Kinetic V-Node servers then output the content to the projectors. The manufacturer was selected once again because of its successful involvement at Atelier des Lumières. “I’ve been in the industry for 15 years and I’d never heard of Modulo Pi before, so you can imagine that I was quite terrified at the prospect of working with it,” recalls Critchley. “But I’ve been astonished at how good the platform is; it’s rock solid. In the three months that we’ve been using it here, we haven’t had a single issue. And that’s without switching the system off. When we’re open, we’ll be doing 10- to 14-hour operations, 7 days a week, which has required some serious stress testing to make sure everything works. The Modulo Pi system has got a very similar workflow to Adobe products, which most people are quite familiar with. So, everything is very intuitive which is especially useful for training techs.”

Augmenting the visuals inside is a large immersive display on the exterior walls of the centre showcasing dynamic digital pieces from various digital motion artists around the world. “We thought a digital façade made completely from LED videowall panels would be quite a cool idea; however, it’s a 40m x 5m space and we wanted it to be pixel perfect. The next question then became who to use for the media server?” explains Critchley. “I initially had my heart on another system that I’m very familiar with but, having used the Modulo Kinetic system inside the galleries, I actually surprised myself slightly by spec’ing it for the façade. It’s the perfect platform for what we needed.” Three Modulo Kinetic media servers delivering seven 4K outputs power the 338 Samsung IER020R and 64 IER020R-F LED panels that comprise the digital façade. An additional 16 NEXO ID14T loudspeakers driven by four NXAmplifiers and a single Yamaha MRX-7D deliver the accompanying soundtrack. Completing the AVL setup is a general house lighting system comprised of 30 Chauvet Professional Colorado 2-Quad Zoom fixtures and five Colorado Batten 72x strip-wash lights. Back inside the gallery, the shear immersion level created by the synergy of immersive audio and moving imagery has the potential to create problems of its own for health and safety. “That side all falls to me as well,” notes the head of AV, “and a big part of what we do and how I’ve been working in immersive environments for six years now is understanding the ways people engage with the various elements of the show. It’s easy to get lost inside your own world. There are a couple of elements in the show that are very difficult to ‘walk’ on, so you end up stopping. But these aspects are all by design and we’re constantly doing studies and tests to better understand how visitors engage with the space.” Critchley’s years of experience have been vital to navigating the unique challenges presented by Infinity des Lumières. “I’ve worked on big projects like this before such as the impressive show at La Perle, but here there are lots of little interesting challenges to tackle that you don’t get on any other project. Thankfully, I’ve got a great team to work with here, all from the UAE. There were a lot of people out here struggling because of the pandemic, so I’ve been very fortunate in being able to support some really great local talent.” With its progressive approach to art, Infinity des Lumières is set to attract new and diverse audiences, expecting to exceed half a million visitors per year and positioning Dubai as the regional epicentre of pioneering cultural expression. “Dubai in general is starting to approach some sense of normality and people here are smart in their behaviour. I can’t wait to finally show off to everyone what we’ve created.” www.barco.com www.infinitylumieres.com

May–June 2021 PRO AVL MEA 37

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FEATURES: BROADCAST

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Setting up for success The studio floor

The DUT’s Department of Video Technology has been seeking to replicate more faithful working production environments through consistent technology upgrades. Simon Luckhurst explores the result for the university’s students WHEN PREPARING STUDENTS FOR THE REAL WORLD, replicating the proper working environments they will ultimately find themselves is essential. When it comes to television production, a big part of that experience comes from learning on and interacting with the same equipment in the classroom that they will be confronted with once they graduate. Furthermore, having trained many students throughout its programme that have gone on to enjoy careers at some on South Africa’s biggest broadcasting houses, Durban’s University of Technology’s Television School has a reputation to uphold. Having joined the faculty in 2000, Louis de Waal, technical supervisor and broadcast engineer at DUT’s Department of Video Technology, has been spearheading the university’s technical offering, steadily upgrading and modernising its infrastructure with new intercom systems, HD cameras, audio mixing consoles and digital intercom solutions in order to more closely match the setups regularly used by South Africa’s biggest broadcasters. “I used to be an engineer with SABC [South African Broadcasting Association],” recalls de Waal, “and I was basically the first proper engineer to join the school’s department – so moved up and quickly started running the technical side of things. These days, I also co-lecture some of my subjects, such as Television Media Technology and Outside Broadcast for first- and second-year students.” The DUT Television School’s new Bachelor of Applied Arts in Screen Arts and Technology degree covers all aspects of production, including researching, script writing, production management, camera operations, lighting, editing, sound recording, mixing and directing. It’s not a traditional engineering

course though, rather one intended to allow students to take charge of the operational aspects of television productions. Students create a variety of programmes as part of their course, from magazine programmes to inserts, public service announcements, music videos, outside broadcasts, dramas, documentaries, reality shows and webisodes. “The course has been running since 1994,” notes de Waal. “It’s quite established and is well-recognised by most of our major broadcasters in South Africa. We push out into the industry around 35 students each year. Furthermore, we are the only school in South Africa whose graduates have won four Emmy awards, the only school to train in outside broadcasting and the only school to train marine videographers.” To serve the students’ needs, the equipment in use has to be modern and able to faithfully replicate real-world

KP-3016 panels inside the OB

A student operates the new RTS DKP-3016 desktop panel broadcast working environments, yet also simple enough to use without extensive expertise. DUT’s facilities include two TV studios, a variety of digital editing suites, an outside broadcast vehicle, professional portable digital camera kits, a Jimmy Jib, specialist underwater housings and additional laboratories. de Waal has been dedicated to providing the students this technical platform. “When I joined the school almost 20 years ago, all we had was a very old PESA comms system and some outdated cameras. Moving from a big broadcaster with a lot of knowledge, I was keen to bring this into the institution. At the time, the setup was quite basic with one studio, some small edit facilities and an OB van that was not operational. My first priority was to get the OB van up and running with at least four cameras. “With the sort of budget that we get, upgrading those facilities is a difficult proposition,” he adds. “However, over the last 2–3 years we’ve saved money from our student levy and that’s allowed us to upgrade both our OB van and two studios.” A little over two years ago, de Waal began the process of replacing the old SDI cameras with newer Sony HSC100R

38 PRO AVL MEA May–June 2021

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high-definition models that pair with a Blackmagic Design Atem Production Studio Switcher and Control Panel and Smart Videohub 40x40 router. “It’s a digital, Triax-based camera with fluid control and monitoring facilities for vision control,” he explains. This combines with a Streamstar X4 Replay/ISO for outside streaming, with audio mixing handled via a Dante-equipped Allen & Heath SQ-5 digital mixing console. The existing communication infrastructure was similarly long overdue for a replacement. “I couldn’t program the system properly as it was so old,” the technical supervisor recalls. “But because intercoms are so expensive, we had to budget for that upgrade over several years.”

The new studio comms design sees five KP3016 panels and one DKP3016 paired with the German manufacturer’s 4000 Series IFB beltpack system to create director, vision control, VT, sound and engineering stations shared between both studios via Dante. “The reason why I selected ODIN here is that I’m currently running both studios off a single unit, but my future plan is to partition them and have another ODIN running the other space,” notes de Waal. “RTS has managed to get it just right. You can keep your costs low and then just add more panels as you want to expand, which makes it particularly acceptable for us. The interface is also great and it’s very easy to program and control.”

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Next on the list of upgrades is replacing the school’s ageing Strand lighting system Having now collected the funds necessary to complete the OB upgrade, de Waal has recently added a pair of RTS ODIN KP3016 intercom panels with BP-4000 universal beltpacks to the setup, chosen chiefly for the OMNEO capabilities and Dante interface. “I was looking for an intercom system that was small, compact and expandable while easily integrating with our other equipment,” he explains. “Furthermore, it’s quite a new technology that I can train the students on. When they go into the industry, this is what is currently being used right now, especially with our sports broadcasters in South Africa. It’s a similar scenario with Dante and I’ve also recently ordered a CTP Systems SCD1010 Dante-enabled single commentator commentary system that also interfaces with the mixing desk or the comms. Everything becomes so much easier as soon as you’ve got that Dante interface to drag and drop stuff around. It just works perfectly. “And by having the Sony cameras with the full intercom system on the cameras, I’ll now be able to partition my comms,” he adds. “All these things are so much easier now thanks to the RTS system, to the point that I handled the installation and planning myself.” As a result of its success and with the primary task of rejuvenating the OB van well on its way, attention turned to the studio comms. ODIN was again the preferred choice. “We were also using an old PESA comms system in our studios that was originally donated to us in 2002 by SABC. Even at that time, it was already about 10 years old and very out of date.”

But while the DUT’s latest upgrades allow students to familiarise themselves with the ideal working situations, there’s a double-edged sword when completely shifting over to a digital infrastructure. “We tr y to teach our students to have ‘protocol sense’ in broadcasting,” he says. “It’s still good to train the students on, for example, analogue cabling systems and how to per form analogue routing on a mixing console. You still have to star t with the basics, but our goal is to take them far beyond that level. In this respect, the ODIN system is not just a communications tool to talk on, it’s really ver y easy for students to delve into deeper and learn.” To fully realise the depar tment’s vision of a modern production environment for its students, attention is now turning to the last missing link in the chain: lighting. de Waal is currently in the process of overseeing the studio’s lighting upgrade to Quar tzcolor LED fixtures in tandem with DWR Distribution. “While our old lights still per form well, they produce a lot of heat and use lots of power. This will now be our main focus for the next 3–5 years. All in all, I’m really happy with our latest upgrade,” concludes the technical super visor. “The Dante integration between the sound desk and the commentar y system is ideal and we can easily expand to bigger requirements by adding more ODIN panels in the future.”

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www.dut.ac.za

May–June 2021 PRO AVL MEA 39

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23/04/2021 15:54


FEATURES: RECORDING

The art of noise

Good Noise Productions becomes South Africa’s first studio to trial Genelec 8351s GOOD NOISE PRODUCTIONS IS NO STRANGER TO ACCOLADES. Owned and run by Crighton Goodwill, a SAMA award-winning producer and engineer with more than 20 years’ experience in the music industry, the studio has played host to a number of productions that have themselves gone on to earn awards of their own. Now, the Gauteng, Johannesburg-based venue has become the first in South Africa to adopt Genelec’s 8351B Smart Active Monitors as a result of a recent upgrade carried out by local distributor Tru-Fi Electronics. Like many modern studios, Good Noise offers its clientele a comprehensive mix of analogue and digital recording equipment able to cater to not only music recording, mixing and mastering but also TV production and digital media platforms. However, Goodwill’s services extend well beyond the norm. The studio serves as much more than just a recording space, providing a deeper role in the planning and management of a project than is traditionally offered. Over the years, it’s managed and produced various successful projects within the television/content and events arena, such as SA Idols, Celebrity MasterChef and X Factor, and helped a number of musicians realise their dreams with record-selling albums. “Most studios are offered merely as facilities for recording,” shares Goodwill. “We offer a way more in-depth and custom service by developing the right production approach and strategy for an artist. This involves an A&R process of assessing the artists’ strengths and honing in on the right ‘sound’ that will make sense to their talents and personality. These aspects make a massive difference to the final outcome. “The quality of our productions has influenced the success of many South African artists,” he adds. “While making use of quality studio equipment is fundamental in the creation of great music, the skill of the person wielding these tools makes all the difference in obtaining the best result.” But the equipment does have a big part to play, and Goodwill also understands the benefits of consistently upgrading the studio’s offering as technology develops and evolves. Good Noise originally contacted Tru-Fi Electronics at the end of 2020 with regards to upgrading its existing and tired Genelec 1032A

Crighton Goodwill speakers for newer 1032C monitors and its accompanying 7370 Subwoofer. “A deal was negotiated and the order placed,” recalls Tru-Fi’s Richard Fulton. “These speakers needed to be installed urgently as Crighton had work to finish off before the annual close down in December. Unfortunately, we didn’t have a pair of 1032Cs on the shelf and so 8351s were installed temporarily until the new order arrived and we set them up using the Genelec GLM software.” Goodwill loved the temporary replacements so much that he immediately cancelled his 1032C order in favour of the 8351s, which now serve as the studio’s primary monitoring setup – a big but logical next-step upgrade from its existing 1032As. They retain many of the same characteristics that the owner has come to appreciate from the 1032As with a host of new possibilities afforded by the digital interface and Smart Active Monitoring functionality.

“My main motivation was to move from the analogue monitors to the newer digital 1032C SAMs, opening up the opportunity for GLM calibration,” Goodwill explains. “But having worked over the last 25 years with various Genelec products as well as other popular brands, I have found Genelec exceedingly better in many respects. I’ve heard it said that it doesn’t really matter what monitors one uses, as long as you know your monitor you can mix well. Those people haven’t heard The Ones yet.” Aside from the digital benefits, the Good Noise owner has also been won over by the upgraded sound quality afforded by the new models. “The word breath-taking comes to mind,” he says. “The stereo image literally envelopes the room. In some ways it was initially quite overwhelming and a challenge to comprehend what I was actually hearing. The uncoloured precision and representation of frequencies is absolutely authoritative and the transients are also pronounced and punchy, which is something I have not heard on any other monitor to date. The most impressive aspect for me though is the tight and controlled accuracy of the low end, even in the subharmonic range.” The new monitors take pride of place among Good Noise’s collection of equipment that includes a 12-Core Mac Pro at its heart running a large collection of popular plugins and paired with an Apogee Thunderbolt Ensemble audio interface, as well as Great River ME-1NV and Focusrite Red 7mic pre-amps. Yamaha NS-10s offer a contrasting flavour to the Genelec 8351Bs, when required. Good Noise Production’s latest equipment purchase might not be the largest in terms of quantity, but the effect on future business for Goodwill has been immediately obvious. “The GLM is probably the most important step to getting control over your studio environment. Bringing the phase into alignment makes a massive difference to the overall mixing experience. I no longer get ear fatigue and have confidence that what I’m getting from the monitors is accurate. I can now rest easy at night knowing that when I’m done mixing a track, it really is ‘in the bag’.” www.genelec.com www.goodnoise.co.za

40 PRO AVL MEA May–June 2021

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23/04/2021 15:04


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23/04/2021 17:24


BUSINESS: COMMENT

A letter from America

Dan Daley considers the arrival of the new “normal” and how the music industry has adapted EVERYONE KEEPS TALKING ABOUT WHEN WE ALL GET back to “normal” after the pandemic. What’s becoming clearer by the week is there might be no going back, at least not in the sense that everyone hopes and expects. The reality is that the “temporary” workarounds developed during the Covid times have been in place long enough to have gone through several iterations of refinements, to the point that the workarounds have surprisingly good chances of becoming the new normals. Take concerts. This was the sector of music that was hit the hardest, kicking artists, musicians, their crews and staff off the road, which since the beginning of the century has been their best source of revenue. Once it became clear that live shows of all kinds were now kaput, alternatives began to sprout. At first, they were little more than conference call FaceTime events from artists’ basements with the barest instrumentation, lighting and sonic quality. But once it became clear that stages would remain dark for the foreseeable future, the alternatives blossomed. Early on it was drive-in concerts, with audiences sitting on the bonnets of their cars listening to PA systems that had sprouted lots of delay speakers, or else they stayed inside and listened to the show over the car’s FM radio. Then the online offerings became better and better. Livestreamed shows over apps like

Veeps, Vivid and Twitch offered better audio via more ability to let professional FOH, monitor and A1 mixers get between the microphones and the codecs. The picture went to 4K pretty quickly. Most importantly, the tickets were not only digital – the entire “venue” was virtual: capacity was no longer a concern. K-Pop band BTS grossed US$18 million for a single show – as much as some B-list touring acts collect in an entire season on the road. While few can hope to come close to that kind of an outcome, dependent as it is on the K-Pop audience’s combination of youth, disposable income, broadband access and manic intensity, just about everyone has taken notice. Live Nation, the world’s largest concert producer, jumped in early last March but was quickly joined by others like StageIt and Concert Window, even as shows on Instagram, Facebook and other social media sites burgeoned. Now that artists, promoters and other above-the-line entities have seen how much money can be made without the expense and hassle of travel and other exigencies of touring, and how much better the technology and quality of online shows have become, they are certain to become an integral part of their business strategies. That’s not as good an outcome for the below-the-line part of the equation – the mixers, the system techs and the rest of

the crews that make touring possible. That’s going to be a reality of the future. Of course, many of them have found their own ways to ride out the pandemic, from building DIY concert production venues in their basements and barns to teaching what they know to a still-hopeful next generation. In fact, education is another sector that’s been trounced by Covid, and is more deeply embracing its online alternatives. Remote learning had already been widely used throughout the education industr y before the pandemic, and pro audio academies like Berklee and Full Sail University have long had online degree offerings, but the pandemic has made them the primar y mode of instruction now. Some teachers and students will adapt well to that format, some will not. But it will let instructors teach larger classes than before, just as vir tual venues will allow audio mixers to work remotely – and thus more often – just as broadcast spor ts A1s have been doing for much of the last year. More work for fewer workers. Sound familiar? A shot of reality to go along with your shot of Moderna or Pfizer: the genie is not going back in the bottle, nor the toothpaste into the tube. Online alternatives to things like education and live music aren’t coming – they’re already here.

A letter from Europe

Phil Ward looks at the border chaos Brexit has unleashed upon the UK’s touring and events haulage industry YOU MAY HAVE WONDERED JUST HOW BIG A BACKWARD step Brexit represents. Everything about it is reactionary, isolationist and sentimental. Well one yardstick that provides us with a cast iron measurement reveals that Brexit is, in fact, a 68-year backward step. Now that it’s “done”, following the last-gasp deal finalised between the EU and the UK at the end of 2020, several arrangements that had evolved in a constructive spirit of post-war recovery have gone up in smoke. Not least of these is one that bears directly upon our cherished industry of arts and entertainment touring, and the heroic troops of truckers, riggers, logistics experts and technical wizards who strive to deliver concerts night after night; a crucial cultural cargo that the Brexiteers would be quite happy to sink as they pull up the drawbridge across the English Channel. It was 68 years ago, even as the European Common Market was a few scribbled lines in a memo passed between a small handful of coal and steel mandarins, that the European Conference of Ministers of Transport (ECMT) became one of the first breakthroughs in the development of a peacetime, business-building union. Given the need for some regulation of goods traffic so that national interests could be preserved in a balance of trade, taxation and

tariffs, the ECMT immediately recognised that certain types of haulage would need exemption from the more rigorous checks to do their job properly. Chief among these were those engaged in “events”: concert parties, theatre troupes, temporary exhibitions, outside broadcasting and so on. Remember, this is before the first Vox AC-30 had been loaded in anger onto a small van. The most likely dispensations would be preserved for costumes and wigs, cellos and tympani, Frank Sinatra’s supply of Brylcreem. Without an ECMT permit, default restrictions would have forced any haulier registered in one country to return its vehicles after only three stops in a seven-day sojourn, clearly a measure to put the brakes on any travelling production. Over time, the ECMT permit was joined by some customs streamlining too, leading to the Admission Temporaire/ Temporary Admission (ATA) carnet for the importation and exportation of goods and equipment that wasn’t going to stay in the country but would, in due course, return home. Valid for a year, in truth, their usage does not change with Brexit: it’s a global system and would still apply today, were it needed, for Frank Sinatra’s Brylcreem. However, EU member countries don’t need them at all. So, up until recently, neither did the UK.

“So what?” cries Jacob Rees-Mogg. “There was paperwork before, and now there’s paperwork again.” Two things: one, the sheer size of modern productions multiplies the carnets needed many times over, at £2,000plus each; two, even if you stomach the customs red tape, the Brexit deal at Christmas obliterated the ECMT dispensations for event trucking, making UK-registered vehicles and drivers virtually redundant on the scale of international touring today. The immediate and long-term effects of this change are almost unthinkable. Thanks partly to its “special relationship” with the US, and thanks largely to decades of market-leading achievement in the field, highly specialist UK transportation for events has come to dominate something like 80% of European touring, continental festivals and everything else that might need a few wigs. It also contributes hugely to economies from Scotland to Gibraltar. It is ironic to consider the aims of the Brexiteers in the light of this brutal diminution of Britain’s place, quite literally, on the international stage. Since 2007, the ECMT has been known as the International Transport Forum, based in Paris. It has 68 years of catching up to do.

42 PRO AVL MEA May–June 2021

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23/04/2021 17:27


BUSINESS: COMPANY PROFILE

Unrivalled progress

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L–R: The Focusrite Group’s Phil Dudderidge, Dom Harter and Tim Carroll

The Focusrite Group has launched its seventh brand, Optimal Audio, which aims at simplifying the commercial audio installation market. Caroline Moss finds out what was behind the move, and the group’s plans going forward PHIL DUDDERIDGE, EXECUTIVE CHAIRMAN AND FOUNDER of Focusrite plc, has consistently demonstrated great foresight in his business moves. Having recognised the need for good, flightcased live mixing consoles from his days on the road with Led Zepplin, he started Soundcraft Electronics in 1983 with Graham Blyth. On its sale to Harman in 1988, Dudderidge acquired the assets of Focusrite, the company started by Rupert Neve, shrewdly broadening out the range of high-quality recording and production equipment to serve a wider customer base of professional, commercial and hobbyist musicians. The original company had gone into liquidation in an era when large-format consoles took a nosedive, and its new incarnation under Dudderidge focused squarely on Rupert Neve’s standalone module business. Today, it’s unusual to enter a recording studio of any level without spotting a piece of Focusrite gear in the racks or on the desktop. The group now encompasses the Focusrite and Focusrite Pro brands and has grown to include Novation, Ampify, ADAM Audio, Martin Audio and now, Optimal Audio. At the helm of the Focusrite Group today is CEO Tim Carroll, who joined from Avid in 2017. The group has a global distribution network covering approximately 160 territories. Focusrite and Martin Audio are headquartered in close proximity to each other, in High Wycombe, UK, and Focusrite also has marketing offices in Los Angeles and Hong Kong. ADAM Audio has offices in Berlin, Nashville and Dongguan, while Martin Audio has a US subsidiary, based in Los Angeles. In total, the group employs around 350 people. In the early days, Dudderidge and his engineers got to work expanding the Focusrite range of outboard equipment, transferring manufacturing from Scotland to China as output increased. By the mid-90s, as the era of computerbased recording dawned, so did a 10-year partnership with Digidesign to design and manufacture plugins and, ultimately, the inexpensive MBox ProTools inter face.

L–R:

Martin Audio’s HQ lit red as part of the #WeMakeEvents campaign Dudderidge didn’t rest on his laurels by simply growing the Focusrite brand, however. In 2004, the company acquired Novation Electronic Music Systems, a British producer of keyboards, synthesisers and controllers; another shrewd move that extended the group’s reach into the fast-growing electronic dance music market segment. This spawned the Ampify Music brand, which develops music-making apps and software, as well as providing a sample library. Meanwhile, Focusrite has continued to develop its range of products, which today come under the Focusrite and Focusrite Pro marques. Notable milestones have been the introduction of Launchpad in 2009; its range of YouTube videos generating millions of views; and the Scarlett USB in 2010, one of the topselling product lines for home studio recording. In 2014, the company was floated on the London Stock Exchange AIM market as Focusrite plc. Five years later, in 2019,

another milestone was accomplished as the group moved into new territory – loudspeakers – with the acquisition of German monitor brand ADAM Audio. So far so studio-orientated: the move made sense in broadening the studio ecosystem the group was able to offer. More unexpected, however, was its takeover of fellow British brand Martin Audio in the same year. Legendary in rock and roll and touring circles since it was founded by the pioneering Dave Martin in 1971, the company had also gone on to make substantial inroads into installed sound, starting with the introduction of the EM Series in the 90s. “The acquisition of Martin Audio was a strong demonstration of our strategic aim to expand into new markets,” explains Carroll of the move. “Martin Audio is also an established brand that instantly added value. More importantly though, they are culturally aligned and have a clear part to play in our unfolding narrative. The Focusrite Group is, first and foremost,

44 PRO AVL MEA May–June 2021

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23/04/2021 15:07

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BUSINESS: TECHNOLOGY a professional music technology company, focused on enriching lives through music by removing barriers to creativity, from that first spark of musical inspiration to delivering an emotionally charged performance onstage. Martin Audio completes that journey, uniting the audience by creating the ultimate live sound experience. The Martin Audio family shares our hunger to innovate and our passion as music and sound enthusiasts. That we’re just a stone’s throw away from them, physically, will only further help unite us in achieving our common goal.” Another attractive element was the nascent brand that Martin Audio was developing, Optimal Audio, which the company claims will “enliven the rather traditional and unnecessarily complex world of commercial audio”. The company is quick to point out that Optimal Audio isn’t a reaction to the pandemic but a “longterm strategy to win in the commercial market”; a journey that started three years ago, before the Martin Audio acquisition. “It started inside Martin Audio as a project to investigate how to win market share of the commercial audio sector,” explains Martin Audio director of marketing, James King. “We quickly realised that the products required to win were not a suitable subset of the Martin Audio brand and so about two years ago we invested in a separate R&D team to develop the products under

Optimal Audio Up ceiling speakers

Martin Audio’s director of marketing, James King

to coexist within the group with little overlap. For this reason, it is not a given that sales and distribution channels will be the same. “Optimal Audio distributors will be based on what is right for that brand as the ambition is very much for it in the long run to be a completely standalone setup with a dedicated team,” says King. Initially, Generation AV has it sales agent for APAC to build distribution and sales in the region. A number of Optimal staff are in place, including an engineering team led by Matt Rowe, who has previously worked at Soundcraft and BSS and whose main focus has been the controller and web app. Gavin Eldridge, a production manager who the Martin Audio directors encountered through their work with the #WeMakeEvents campaign, has joined to project manage the brand launch. Existing Martin Audio staff, primarily MD Dom Harter, international sales director Brad Watson and King, also make up the team which, when the UK is able to fully return to the workplace, will be based at the High Wycombe HQ.

L–R: Optimal Audio team Dom Harter, Tim Carroll and Matt Rowe at the company’s online launch the banner of Optimal Audio. When Martin Audio was purchased by Focusrite plc, the Optimal Audio brand concept – at that stage around 15 months into development – took on additional life with investment by Focusrite as well as support from the wider group to help bring us to this moment.” Optimal Audio’s approach is based around simplification, making product selection, installation and end usage all easier to achieve. More than 20 products made a debut at the April launch, offering a one-stop solution of control, amplification and loudspeakers for small- to medium-sized commercial installations, with a focus on supporting multi-zone venues. Central are the four- and eight-zone, powered and non-powered DSP zone controllers with three-band EQ, bandpass filtering on every output, limiters and delay. There is also an app for system setup, allowing installers to configure EQs and presets and structure time-of-day routines. Venue staff can be given a simple user interface to operate the system, while wall-mounted ZonePad controllers are available in one- or four-zone formats. The range also comprises three SmartAmp amplifiers with DSP, multichannel direct drive constant voltage and optimised presets, available in half-rack and full-rack options. The Up range consisting of five ceiling speakers, a series of four Cuboid on-wall wooden speakers and two compact Sub subwoofers complete the launch products. King cites the zone controllers and app as being the brand’s true differentiators. “At this price point there is nothing on the market that offers the flexibility, capability and ease of use,” he says. “In support of the amps and loudspeakers, these offer an ecosystem that works seamlessly together, ensuring sound quality and which can be easily operated by venue staff, not just engineers.” Not only will the seventh Focusrite Group brand entity offer differentiated product, software and pricing, it will also target a largely different market to Martin Audio, allowing the two brands

Optimal Audio Cuboid on-wall speakers

Optimal Audio’s SmartAmp amplifier series

Optimal Audio DSP zone controllers

As has been the case for all companies involved in live entertainment, the past year has been tough for the touring side of Martin Audio’s business, and the company has immersed itself in the #WeMakeEvents initiative aimed at highlighting the plight of the pandemic-ravaged live industry. At the same time, the company is well-placed to focus on other areas of sound reinforcement. “Martin Audio is absolutely committed to the live sound sector; it is our heritage,” says King. “Obviously, that part of the industry has been devasted during the pandemic and we have focused sales in the interim period on installation. Meanwhile, we’ve maintained close relationships with all of our rental partners, offering advice and support throughout the pandemic. We can’t wait for the return of live events and our roadmap of future product is already taking that into account. We have a positive outlook on the future given the world is slowly returning to some sort of normality.” Meanwhile, the entire Focusrite Group has gone from strength to strength in the past year, enjoying a lockdown boom resulting in part from a huge upswing in musicians recording at home, as well as studios wanting to upgrade their audio setups. Half-year sales figures from September 2020 to February 2021 doubled to a total of £90m as compared to the same period in the previous financial year. From acquiring the Focusrite brand 23 years ago, Dudderidge has steadily assembled an ecosystem that promises to push the future of audio and music ever upwards. www.optimal-audio.com

May–June 2021 PRO AVL MEA 45

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BUSINESS: COMPANY PROFILE

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The team aids Game with a unique brand activation for the launch of its newest store

Willem van der Walt and production coodinator Sophie Henderson at Monster Jam

The company is no stranger to unusual and novel projects, such as the Red Bull Shay’ iMoto held in 2020

Creativity unleashed The last 12 months has seen Johannesburg-based Derwalt transition from large-scale touring shows to smaller niche projects

JOHANNESBURG-BASED DERWALT HAS BEEN PUSHING THE creative boundaries of event production and digital activations in combination with many of South Africa’s largest production and media houses since its creation in 2017. Having worked in the industry over the last 15 years as a production manager and coordinator, managing director Willem van der Walt has witnessed an incredible amount of change in the way events are devised and managed throughout that period. But nothing quite on the scale of the last 12 months. Being engaged in the consultation of all stages of event operations – from initial concept creation right through to site management, technical drawings, financial forecasting and event production operations – affords van der Walt a unique insight into all the major facets of bringing an event to life. 2020 threw a number of curveballs to clients – curveballs for which he has become well accustomed to devising creative solutions. His experience in managing large-scale events was initially honed at Mushroom Productions, working on some of South Africa’s biggest touring and festival productions. “Traditionally, they did all the big concerts,” he recalls. “I worked for them on big stadium shows in particular as a site coordinator, stage manager, project manager or really whatever role falls into your lap on big projects like that.” It’s no surprise that since van der Walt split away from Mushroom to form Derwalt that the company has continued ongoing collaboration with many of the country’s biggest production houses and an impressive list of touring shows and festivals. “I love big shows, and there are number of

2021 has seen Derwalt focusing more on virtual and smallscale events really great shows such as Foo Fighters, One Direction, Eminem, Roxette and The Killers that we’ve been involved with recently. But activations and creative ideas, I just love executing those and thinking outside of the box.” Forced to adapt to the lack of live events throughout the pandemic, many local production companies diversified their offerings into less traditional areas in recent months, with virtual conferencing and music concerts being the most popular choices. Derwalt was already pioneering these types of experiential brand offerings long before others got in on the action. “I saw the brands as being the new promoters of the future and love the activation and

experiential side of things,” van der Walt explains. As such, the company has been engaged in a number of interesting and novel launches in recent years, for major international retailers like Game and Walmart. The managing director hasn’t completely traded the roll ‘n’ roll lifestyle for the corporate world, however. “Maybe 30–40% of our work now is festivals and the other 60–70% would be experiential stuff and custom brand activations,” he says. “My main passion is really in taking creative briefs and running with them. These were all things we were engaged with before the pandemic but, of course, have become much more prominent now.” Up until the start of 2020, business was blossoming and van der Walt had expected to end the year having amassed a 12-strong team of dedicated account managers. “Prior to Covid, the idea was that we’ve got a certain number of fixed events happening in a year and you put people on certain accounts to manage throughout the year. That’s how you can grow the business. We were just starting to implement those annual events and create those accounts.” With next-to-no support for the community of freelancers that keeps the industry cogs spinning, the pandemic has hit South Africa’s live events industry harder than most and Derwalt hasn’t been shielded from this reality, despite its diversified business. “We were fully booked for 2020,” says the MD. “We had Monster Jam on the cards, Rocking the Daisies festival and many more things lined up. Unfortunately, Bacardi holiday club back in March 2020 was one of the last gigs we did. This year, requests versus what we normally would get have been around 90% less.” As the vaccine rollout continues and people increasingly look to a post-pandemic world and the reopening of live events, conversations are increasingly shifting away from what can’t be done to finding solutions. Derwalt’s expertise as a consultant is increasingly coming into play, with van

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BUSINESS: COMPANY PROFILE der Walt working on a number of ways to get live events back up and running safely again. “We’ve always positioned ourselves as production services specialists, but one of our main income streams is consultancy. Everything now is around social distancing. I recently had a conversation with some festival directors who are trying to create everything around the idea of pods – an experience for about 500 people where you create these VIP experience pods. We’re doing this right now in Zambia, where the restrictions are a little looser than South Africa. You put a toilet inside each VIP pod and limit movement between the pods as much as possible. The downside is that it likely ends up being a premium activation package for a selected few people.” This is being augmented by a Covid ticketing system the company is developing that incorporates a system known as Covid Defender, designed to provide an unbiased test result without passing confidential medical information onto event organisers. “The Covid Defender is the contact tracing part,” explains van der Walt. “You embed all the purchasing data into a QR code that gets scanned by the health official doing the test, who is only given permission to see the positive or negative test results. So, there’s a whole new world of thinking. I mean, if somebody arrives, you test them and they’re positive, you can’t have that person at the event space.” van der Walt pulls out some technical drawings illustrating his idea having recently brushed up his skills on Vectorworks software at DWR’s in-person training. “I normally use Vectorworks in a less than traditional way,” he admits. “The technical companies use it for performing calculations, how many scaffold towers we need and how much this is going to weigh, etc. But particularly in today’s world, people are more concerned about things like where the Covid testing centre is and what the entrance mechanics are. I can illustrate this easily to them at scale in the software.”

Derwalt has traded festival arenas for greenscreens But as the company looks further into the future and ways to expand its experiential brand offering, it will be pooling its expertise and resources with creative agency RAPT.com in an upcoming merger. “They look at the whole portfolio of digital content creation – social media, analytics, the creative thinking part of the strategy and all of that stuff. Together with my expertise and skills in production and technical know-how and the ability to make things come to life, we’ll be

able to offer a full 360° solution to the industry. South Africa doesn’t have a lot of those companies.” In the spirit of never letting a good crisis go to waste, Derwalt now has an ever-greater number of boxes to think outside of. A task that van der Walt, thankfully, relishes. www.derwalt.com www.raptcreative.com

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FEATURES: TECHNOLOGY

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ROCing the world of remote production The Riedel ROC setup used to support Wacken World Wide

Collaborating with the RRN, Riedel’s Remote Operations Center in Wuppertal facilitated the first-ever fully decentralised live productions at the end of 2020. Simon Luckhurst investigates REMOTE PRODUCTION HAS BEEN THE TALK OF THE TOWN throughout the last 12 months as companies and end users have tried to cobble together new solutions, allowing outside access to their systems in order to keep activities running at a time when the pandemic was severely limiting movements. The broadcast industry in particular had already been trending towards fully remote production workflows for several years, but catering for this need undoubtedly took on a renewed importance more recently. Some companies were caught out by the overnight shift. Others, like German manufacturer Riedel, have been handed an opportunity to showcase its advanced capabilities. Riedel’s ROC (Remote Operations Center) has been in development by the company for several years and has recently supported a number of fully remote concert productions. The ROC is a communications and signal control centre located at the company’s headquarters in Wuppertal, through which all remote production connections converge. The ROC team is capable of centrally managing, programming and monitoring all intercom signals, data streams, audio feeds and CCTV feeds for a given project. “The topic of remote production at Riedel started around two to three years ago, just prior to coronavirus,” recalls Riedel project manager, Carsten Voßkühler. “We could see a lot of opportunities where we could support the productions we’re involved in through our rental business directly from our Remote Operations Center.”

Carsten Voßkühler

Peter Brandt Image courtesy of Jörg Grzenia

The accelerator was the German Football League. Having supported referee communications for the Bundesliga for the last two-and-a-half years on a weekly basis, the benefits of centralised control for Riedel quickly became obvious. “If we could support the match communications fully remotely, we wouldn’t need to send engineers out to all of the stadiums, removing all of the problems and costs associated with

travelling. In total, we have 36 stadiums connected to the ROC and every weekend, 18 stadiums are on air.” Prior to 2020, this approach had already brought Riedel and its clients a host of financial and logistical benefits. Artist Intercom matrixes, as well as Bolero beltpacks and antennas, are permanently installed at each of the stadiums and Riedel engineers are able to tap into the system remotely on match day with a minimal number of employees taking care of several sites simultaneously. “The benefit is that we can reduce the personal costs and the travel costs, which is good for customers, but we can also concentrate our technical experts and our knowledge in one place,” says Voßkühler. “However, we didn’t build this remote operations centre just for referee communications. From there, we started thinking about how it could benefit other projects, such as IT and CCTV, managing switch infrastructures from the ROC. From a very earlier stage, we also started talking with Peter Brandt at the Remote Recording Network (RRN). Peter came up with his own remote production idea and so we looked at how we could combine all these ideas together and start talking about the technologies required.” Founded by Brandt, the RRN has been exploring different methods of remote audio mixing for more than a decade. The technology is now finally starting to catch up to Brandt’s futuristic vision. “My core business is concert recording and live broadcast – everything that has to do with recording

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FEATURES: TECHNOLOGY

Wacken World Wide 2020 was mastered remotely from Valhalla Studios NY

Developments between the RRN and Riedel came to fruition at the end of 2020 with the production of several virtual live events that brought together teams working remotely across four countries and three continents. In November, a livestreamed Purple Schulz concert recorded at One2One Studio in Germany represented the first fully decentralised production of a live, global music event. The onsite production team operated with a minimal cast, the director working remotely and in real time from Vienna, the lighting designer from Munich and the lighting operator from Frankfurt. FOH and broadcast sound was mixed in Cologne, and the parallel sound recording was controlled in 5.1.4 from Valhalla Studios in New York. The TV Skyline Skycenter in Mainz acted as a hub for camera control, image mixing and stream delivery, while teams in Berlin managed quality control and remote audience aspects. The technological heart of the production was the Riedel ROC through which all remote production connections converged. The ROC team managed, programmed and monitored all intercom signals, data streams, audio feeds and CCTV feeds. Just prior to that, the RRN delivered audio for Wacken World Wide 2020 from the Live Nation stage in Hamburg to the Riedel ROC in Wuppertal, and then on to Valhalla Studios in New York for mastering by Ronald Prent. “It was the first virtual, mixed reality show that Live Nation had done and they used

elements of the Wacken festival site in northern Germany,” recalls Brandt. “There was no control room onsite, just the core machinery with the control room in New York. But it could have been anywhere. In theory, you can do it from your living room.” While this approach has proved hugely successful for the recent concerts – and in fact necessary in the midst of the pandemic – work on the remote mixing journey is ongoing. “We keep developing every day and working on bits and bytes to improve things like the audio quality, which is already amazing, and ways to reduce latency,” adds Brandt. “It’s a constant refinement process going on, but the basic system is working.” This new remote model developed jointly by Riedel and the RRN will surely set the bar for the future production of highquality remote productions. “We are redefining the possibilities for live productions,” says Voßkühler. “The ground-breaking remote workflow opens up exciting opportunities for a wide variety of distributed production applications. Creating the technical solution is one thing but the service aspect is also really important for us, so we’ll be continuing to explore ways we can further support customer productions with the ROC. Then, of course, the whole IT/IP conversation is very important for us as well, and we see a big benefit here for the ROC too.” Riedel also sees great potential for expanding support into other areas and the ROC workflow was once again called into action to provide a 360° coverage concept for the recent

Audio for Wacken World Wide 2020 was delivered from the Live Nation stage in Hamburg to the ROC in Wuppertal sound. In the past, we used to go out with big trucks, 40-ton/20-ton tractor/trailer combinations with a studio inside, all analogue machines and analogue consoles. Over the years this developed and, around 10 years ago, I started squeezing this setup into a typical London TX4 taxicab. This was the step in between, seeing how we can get the equipment smaller and smaller, but it was insufficient because you still couldn’t mix inside the taxi. We then started exploring how we could do the mixing remotely and use the TX4 as just a hub.” In 2018, Brandt pitched his vision to Thomas Riedel, who put a team together to help develop the idea using the ROC as the core centre for the entire enterprise. It started with audio and has since expanded to include controlling data and controlling mixing consoles. “Basically, everything that’s controllable goes through the ROC,” explains Brandt.

A Purple Schulz concert recorded in Germany represented the first fully decentralised production of a live, global music event

ROC Americas Cup in New Zealand. The company combined camera solutions, audio and sensor technology embedded in a comprehensive technical infrastructure. That was supported by an onsite team of just 30 members, managing all audio, video, communications, tracking and data transmission systems, including signals from onboard cameras, chase boats and helicopters. The ROC served as a monitoring and engineering hub through which operators could remotely access the entire system setup in Auckland. This enabled the team to monitor and control essential parameters of the equipment aboard the racing yachts, including camera control, audio setup, GPS data transmission and battery management, as well as to support the onsite crew in optimising system performance. “We’ve proven the concept that almost everything is controllable remotely – audio, lighting, vision and comms,” concludes Brandt. “The next thing we need to wait for is client demand. Even the best solutions are no good if there are no concerts. But one of the other great benefits of the approach is that we’re not taking away anyone’s jobs; in fact the opposite is the case. Furthermore, the quality we achieved with the Live Nation concerts was far better than anything we’d achieved before with a soundtrack.”

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The Riedel ROC was also the technological heart of the production for the Purple Schulz concert

www.riedel.net

May–June 2021 PRO AVL MEA 49

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BUSINESS MUSIC

COMPLETE AUDIO SOLUTIONS

RCF Business Music offers a complete range of products to design audio systems for background and foreground music in public spaces. High audio quality and a flexible architecture, allowing the distribution of different audio programs in multiple environments, each with specific acoustic requirements. From small to large systems, the RCF Business Music line provides the smartest solution, blending uncompromised sound quality, full processing features, exceptional power, easy configuration, and high scalability.

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23/04/2021 17:32


BUSINESS: SPONSORED SHOW PREVIEW

ISE 2021 Live & Online – The Future of AV

Embracing a hybrid approach to events, ISE Live & Online, 1–2 June 2021, will bring the industry together in a safe and richly rewarding way. Mike Blackman explained: “Whether joining online or in-person in Barcelona, attendees can access inspiring content from innovation leaders, networking opportunities and the latest technologies. This main ISE event, 1–2 June in Barcelona and online, acknowledges that we are at a stage where we can start to plan again for the future and these two days will assist the industry to build a new roadmap for a new era.”

ISE Live: ISE@ Barcelona: 1–2 June, Fira de Barcelona Gran Via In-person attendees can visit booths from exhibitors including Alfalite, Ampio, Barco, Control4, Equipson and WolfVision. Highlights from the exhibition will be broadcast from the Main Stage during the two days so digital attendees will not miss the live action. There will also be a Pavilion by ICEX to highlight Spanish brands and business opportunities, an AV Experience Zone and Catalan Innovation Zone as well as a host of other features.

the different phases of the pandemic. This story is set to inspire and help you reflect on your own leadership style.

• On the Sofa Keynote Interview: Sustainability accelerated Sustainability is at the top of the global agenda and modern society is increasingly concerned with sustainability initiatives and the protection of our shared environment, so ignoring it can only result in being left behind. We ask a thought-leader what corporates ought to be looking at, and why and what the perfect destination is in terms of a sustainable business. November 2020, ISE Digital will also feature On the Sofa Keynotes, Reporter Roundtables and of course Startup Nation, sponsored by ACCIÓ, highlighting start-ups that are shaking up the markets. Both AVIXA and CEDIA will be featured on the Main Stage with a range of sessions covering the latest market intelligence, global trends and taking a look at the smart technologies driving the residential and commercial marketplaces.

ISE Digital – The Future of AV: Live 1–2 June / On Demand for 2021

The full programme will be revealed on the ISE website over the coming weeks, but some highlights will include:

Powered by CISCO technology, ISE Digital will feature daily thought-leadership, roundtable discussions and market intelligence curated by TNW, AVIXA, CEDIA and ISE partners, with insights on how the latest technologies can futureproof business in 2022 and beyond. During this two-day festival of content, the Main Stage at the Fira de Barcelona, sponsored by KNX and Barco, will be at the heart of the ISE Digital content programme with livestreamed sessions throughout the day. Building on the RISE Spotlight programme which ISE has been running since

www.iseurope.org

ISE MEA.indd 3

On the Sofa Keynote with TNW: Shaking out the trends in next tech Key insights showcasing the tech trends all businesses need to have on their radar and why. This session explores which technology has accelerated and what’s been put on the backburner as a result of the pandemic. • Rising to the challenge: Finding opportunity through crisis An influential AV thought-leader takes us on a journey of how they innovated and led their team to achieve growth through

Roundtable: What’s your purpose? • How to position your brand and ser vice in a post-pandemic world. How important is brand purpose? Is it time to evaluate the values of your business? Focused “Tech Channels” with contributions from key technology sectors will inspire and spark lively conversations, with an opportunity for attendees to ask questions. Topic areas covered include Smart Buildings, XR in Today’s Reality, Digital Signage, Live Events & Audio, Workspace Evolution and Digital Learning. Mike Blackman added: “Whether it’s a global case study, expert presentation, roundtable, CEO interview or product demo, visitors to ISE Digital will learn about the latest innovations in a new and fascinating manner. We are excited to share this with the AV industry.” Attendees can access interviews, panel discussions, brand stories, product news, demos and more – either live or on demand.

Registration is quick and simple – www.iseurope.org/register.php?actioncode=W1KNX1DU

May–June 2021 PRO AVL MEA

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NEWPRODUCTS

INSTALLATION • AV • LIVE SOUND • BROADCAST • POSTPRODUCTION • RECORDING • LIGHTING A–ZCONTENTS

Martin Audio unveils Torus and Display 3 Two new products from British loudspeaker manufacturer Martin Audio have been unveiled in a special online launch event

MARTIN AUDIO has released its first constant curvature line array, Torus, and its new 3D prediction and optimisation software, Display 3. The new Torus system is intended to bridge the gap between a full-blown line array or a point source solution for applications that typically require a throw distance of 15–30m. The result of three years’ development in furthering the acoustic concept and performance achievable, the manufacturer states that Torus combines optimised coverage, SPL profile and cost efficiency. “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,” explained managing director, Dom Harter. “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 offers a horizontal dispersion pattern that can be manually adjusted between 90°, 60° or 75° (asymmetrical) via the Dynamic Horn Flare. 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 easily accessible from the front grille. A vertical pattern of either 15° or 30° is achieved via two separate cabinet types: the T1215 and T1230, respectively. These cabinets can also be combined to fit venue and coverage requirements. Torus cabinets feature a phase plug mounted in front of a 12-inch neodymium driver to increase mid-band sensitivity, along with three 1.4-inch HF polymer dome neodymium compression drivers. The sonic performance is said to be uncompromised even when driven at a higher SPL.

Torus is also the first product to take advantage of the Display 3 prediction and optimisation software. Intended for use in both live and installed applications, the software works with Sketchup in order to provide venue modelling, or allows for more simple venue and shape creation. Initially, the software will natively support prediction and optimisation of Torus, with line arrays being imported from Display 2. Over time, Display 3 will incorporate all of the manufacturer’s line array, point source, ceiling and subwoofer solutions for a complete self-contained system design and prediction platform.

ADJ Link/Element HEXIP Chrome 68 AJA OG-12GM/OG-FiDO-TR-12G 70 Alcons Audio CRMS-SRIW/9090 53 61 Allen & Heath AHM-64 update Amate Audio T-G7 52 62 Antelope Audio Zen Go Synergy Core Atlona AT-OPUS-RX41/AT-VTP-1000VL 72 Audac ALTI4/ALTI6/ALTI4M/ALTI6M 54 Audinate Dante Embedded Platform SDK 65 Audio-Technica ES945O/XLR and ES947C/XLR 58 B&C Speakers FB464 57 Barco G100 series 70 Biamp Devio SCX 59 58 Bosch Dicentis custom flush range Bose Videobar VB1 update 69 66 Brompton Technology Tessera V3.1 Cameo Flat Pro G2 series 67 CEDAR Audio/Sound Devices sdnx/Dante Virtual Soundcard 62 Celestion TFX0515 53 Chauvet Maverick Force 2 Profile and Force 1 Spot 67 Christie Pandoras Box V8 73 ClearOne Unite 10/Unite 50 AF/VESA mounting 70 d&b audiotechnik Soundscape update 65 72 Datapath Aligo Dejero LivePlus for Windows 73 52 DiGiCo Quantum225/DQ- and MQ-Rack DirectOut ViViD 62 Electro-Voice Evolve 50M 53 Eventide Pro Tools expansion card for H9000 62 Extron DTP3 T 202/DTP3 R 201 60 GLP Streamer 67 Grass Valley K-Frame on AMPP/AMX Express 73 KLANG:technologies KLANG:kontroller/KLANG:vokal 61 63 Klotz AIS D2 series Kramer KronoMeet/VP-551X 58 54 KV2 Audio CS Series LD Systems IMA 60/IPA 412 T/IPA 424 T 54 LEA Professional RCAF-2 63 Lectrosonics SMWB/SMDWB 61 LynTec Narrow Profile Panelboards 61 LYNX Technik RCT 1012 71 Mackie Onyx8/Onyx12/Onyx16/Onyx24 64 Magewell Ultra Encode 71 72 Magmatic Rocket Martin Audio Torus/Display 3 51 53 Meyer Sound Leopard-M80 NewTek Spark Plus IO 12G-SDI/ProTek 70 62 Palmer Grand Audition MKII Pliant Technologies CrewCom CB2 64 Powersoft M-Force 301P02/BIM 56 PR Lighting Aqua 380 Beam/Aqua 380 BWS 67 Precision Devices PD.185C003/PD.1885C0003 56 PreSonus ioStation 24c/Revelator/Sphere 58 QSC Q-Sys Reflect Enterprise Manager Professional Tier 60 RCF HVL Series/X MAX 10/X MAX 12 52 Renkus-Heinz CX/CA121M 54 Roland JUNO-60 software synthesiser/Zenbeats 2.1 66 Ross Video Ultrix Acuity/Tria Express Duet 71 57 Samson LMU1/DEU1/XPD2m Sennheiser TruVoicelift 65 61 Solid State Logic UF8 Sony Crystal C-series and B-series/DWR-S03D update 68 60 Sound Devices A-15PIN Studio Technologies macOS version of STcontroller 65 68 Symetrix T-10 Glass Tascam TM-70/TM-82 57 Tasker TSK401, TSK402 and TSK403 CPR Cca 63 Telestream Cloud Stream Monitor 72 Televic Conference Confidea Flex G4 wireless 60 Universal Audio Apollo Heritage Editions 66 Vaddio Ceiling Speaker/USB Audio Bundle 57 Visionary DuetE-WP-BT/DuetE-WP-H 71 66 Waves Nx Ocean Way Nashville/Vocal Blender Wohler Technologies Plugin option cards for iVAM1-1 64 73 Wolfvision Cynap Core Pro XTA Dynamic EQ added to XTA DPA and MC2 Delta amps 64

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SMPTE FIBER TRANSMISSION WITH

The DRAGONFLY series offers advanced lens technology for the Broadcast and AV markets to ensure robust, reliable connectivity that is easier to maintain than common hybrid camera signal transmission systems with the best of performance. Suitable for indoor (studio) and outdoor (OB-Truck) camera links according to SMPTE standard. Ruggedized and dirt protected hybrid connection system with 2 lensed single-mode ferrules and 4 copper pins. Waterproof according to IP68 safety standard in mated condition. Standard SMPTE Broadcast Cut-Outs to Simply Integrate with Existing Systems.

Tel: +971 4 266 5244 | Fax: +971 4 262 6682 | Email: info@nmkelectronics.com | Website: www.nmkelectronics.com

NMKelectronics

nmkelectronics

nmkelectronics

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PRODUCTS

RCF unveils stadium solutions

Quantum225

INITIALLY DESIGNED for American football stadiums as a high-power solution, the HVL Series from RCF offers a modular and scalable system for large venues and events. The weather-proof cabinets combine six RCF neodymium Precision Transducers in a symmetrical, horn-loaded configuration for maximum efficiency and sound quality over long distances. The series features point source and line source speakers

close distance listening on a per fectly tuned crossover to repor tedly ensure even coverage and detail of the vocal range. The rotatable 90° x 70° horn allows installation either ver tically or horizontally. The X MAX 10 and X MAX 12 models feature a 1-inch compression driver with electronic protection. X MAX 10 boasts a 10-inch woofer and delivers a maximum SPL of 128dB with a total power handling

DiGiCo launches Quantum225 DIGICO HAS staged an online launch to unveil its Quantum225 console. Designed to adapt to changing market requirements, the Quantum225 can be specified with the new DQ-Rack with integrated Dante for AV installation and the demands of an AoIP networking environment, or alternatively with the MQ-Rack for MADI connectivity to existing touring infrastructures. The Quantum225 includes 72 input channels with 36 busses plus a master bus and a 12x12 matrix. There are four MADI ports and dual DMI ports for added connectivity, 8x8 analogue and four AES channels for local I/O, built-in UB MADI, optional optics, plus dual PSU. The console also incorporates 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 TFTs located across the surface. The custom-designed, multipurpose mounting bracket attaches to the left-hand panel of the console. This can accommodate an additional channel or overview screen, a KLANG:kontroller 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. 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 eight AES outputs. Users can reconfigure four 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 rack’s TFT Configuration screen. Standard features included Dual PSU and 48k or 96k operation. The Quantum225 offers the option to add single or dual loops of Optocore. On each

DQ-Rack loop – which is 504 channels of audio – there can be up to 14 DiGiCo racks, or a combination of racks and tie-lines around the loop. With dual Optocore loops, that’s 1,008 Optocore channels of audio and 28 racks running. In addition, the engine has a 48-channel UB MADI, so users can connect any laptop via USB and get 48 channels of recording and playback. www.digico.biz

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HVL 15-S along with subwoofers. The transducers feature neodymium magnetic circuits and new voice coil ventilation systems and voice coil assemblies. The HVL units have also been designed to lower overall system costs by delivering full coverage with fewer modules. HVL 15 cabinets incorporate a pair of 15-inch drivers at the low end, a pair of 10-inch midrange drivers and two titanium dome compression drivers with 4-inch voice coils at the top. With a frequency response of 43Hz – 18kHz (–10dB), these three-way, long-throw boxes are driven in biamped mode and are capable of producing a maximum SPL of 133dB (LF) and 145dB (MHF). Two coverage options are available: 90° x 30° (L) and 60° x 30° (P) and one bass module (S). The full-range, passive, two-way X MAX series has been designed as a multipurpose speaker, to achieve the best nearfield quality, vocal coherence and stable tonal balance at full volume. The products build on the heritage of the manufacturer’s MAX series to create a complete range of solutions for highpowered applications in bars, par ty rooms, clubs and discos. The series features a custom-designed mid-freq shaping for

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X MAX 10 of 700W. The 12-inch X MAX 12 reaches a maximum SPL of 129dB with a total power handling of 800W. www.rcf.it

Amate transforms G7 DESIGNED TO enable conversion of the all-new G7 commercial speakers from low impedance to 100V line level operation in minutes, Amate Audio has announced the availability of the T-G7. The optional plate incorporates transformer circuitry and a faciamounted selector switch for 5W, 10W, 20W or 40W 100V line power settings or a switch back to “direct” 16Ω operation. In facilitating optional 100V line operation, this feature reduces potential waste, eliminating the need for redundant circuitry and added weight. Additionally, it offers contractors efficiencies

in providing all modes of installation from a single stock holding. Housed in a reinforced ABS plastic enclosure, the hexagonal, EN54-24 certifiable G7 is a dedicated commercial audio speaker. Continuous programme power handling and output capabilities of the 6.5-inch two-way cabinet are rated at 120W and 112dB SPL, respectively. Other features include integrated mounts for the U-bracket wall mount and a recessed connector panel with a protective cover. www.amateaudio.com

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PRODUCTS

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Leopard gains narrow coverage option A NEW variant of the Leopard line array loudspeaker designed to provide focused coverage and long-throw applications has joined Meyer Sound’s Leopard family. The Leopard-M80 sports an identical design as existing Leopard cabinets, but with a controlled 80° horizontal pattern instead of the original 110°. Because the vertical coverage and rigging hardware are both identical to the original Leopard, the M80 can be configured in mixed arrays of both variants. M80 loudspeakers in the upper array section will provide focused long-throw coverage, while Leopard loudspeakers below spread horizontal coverage for the closer seating sections. Arrays configured with only M80 loudspeakers can reportedly offer a long throw with reduced spill to the sides of the array, which can be advantageous in narrow venues with reflective side

walls as well as in outdoor applications where side spill into adjacent areas must be minimised to conform to noise regulations. In both variants, Leopard’s amplifier, driver and horn designs are said to ensure linear response over a wide dynamic range, as well as exceptional phase coherence, consistent coverage patterns, low distortion and high power-to-size and weight ratios. Basic Leopard arrays can be configured in Native Mode for optimum performance with minimal external processing; however, the system’s narrow profile and limited weight make Leopard arrays a good choice for mid-sized touring acts and fixed installations where portability, scalability and ease of rigging are essential. www.meyersound.com

Alcons spreads the wider word FEATURING PRO-RIBBON transducer technology, Alcons has developed the CRMS-SRIW/9090 as a wide dispersion reference screen or compact surround system for immersive sound-for-picture applications. The two-way design can also be used as a full-range enclosure within an inconspicuous in-wall setting or for on-wall mounting. Voice matching and tonal balance within the CRMS product family have been achieved by incorporating identical MHF components. The passive-filtered CRMS-SRIW system consists of a RBN401 pro-ribbon driver for HF and a vented 8-inch mid-bass for LF reproduction. The HF section has an 800W (peak) power input, enabling a 1:15 dynamic range with up to 90% less distortion from 1kHz to beyond 20kHz. The cabinet features 90° dispersion up to the highest frequencies that creates a very wide and coherent direct-field coverage throughout the listening space in addition to a consistent reflected diffuse-field response. The CRMS-SRIW system’s LF section is tuned for a usable frequency response down to 58Hz, enabling a smooth transition with additional LFE subwoofer systems. In addition to VHIR phase processing, Signal Integrity Sensing (SIS) significantly increases response accuracy. SIS pre-wiring ensures complete cable and connector

JOINING THE Evolve 50 and Evolve 30M, Electro-Voice has launched its Evolve 50M column loudspeaker system featuring the manufacturer’s new QuickSmart Link digital audio and control technology, an on-board mixer, DSP and effects. Available in black or white finishes, the full-range column array and its eight lightweight 3.5-inch neodymium drivers provide ultra-wide, full-bandwidth 120° coverage via proprietary waveguides. Array-formed 40° asymmetrical vertical coverage reportedly ensures acoustic output is directed towards both sitting and standing audience members.

The array enclosure is constructed from a durable composite material and incorporates an ergonomic aluminium handle. A 12-inch subwoofer is housed in a 15mm wood enclosure with a high-efficiency, laminarflow vent design. The array and sub are connected via a symmetrical aluminium pole with internal wiring and magnetically assisted latching. The speakers are protected by a black, powder-coated, 18-gauge steel grille. An array/pole carry

case is also included. An advanced Class-D amplifier provides up to 1,000W of power. The M classification refers to the integrated eight-channel digital mixer. Developed in collaboration with sibling brand Dynacord, the mixer has multiple inputs (four XLR/TRS combo mic/line inputs, one XLR/TRS combo stereo line input, one RCA, one 3.5mm stereo and one Hi-Z instrument input) with professional-grade preamps and mix functions. High-resolution, low-latency Bluetooth streaming is provided for music playback or accompaniment. Independent channel aux sends and a foot switch input are also included, and a range of effects (30 presets, including chorus, delay, flange and reverb, via two FX channels) are said to add a myriad of options for musicians to fine-tune their tone. QuickSmar t Link can be used to combine two Evolve 50Ms for use with larger bands or gigs needing more inputs. The systems can be linked together via an Ethernet cable or paired to a single mobile device via the QuickSmar t Mobile app. For applications requiring fewer inputs, but still requiring a mixer and stereo output, the Evolve 50M can be matched with an Evolve 50 via the Mix Out XLR connector. QuickSmar t DSP allows the navigation and adjustment of all audio, effects and mix functions via an LCD with single-knob control or via the QuickSmar t Mobile app, as well as multiple options for signal routing and inputs. Functions include four presets (Music, Live, Speech and Club), three-band system EQ (low, mid and high), sevenband graphic EQ (in Mixer mode), five user-programmable presets (Store and Recall settings), phantom power, visual monitoring of limiter status, input level control and meters, and a master volume control to optimise gain structure. www.electrovoice.com

Celestion remodels TFX coaxial

compensation between the CRMS-SRIW and the ALC amplified loudspeaker controller. In addition to boasting a 150mm depth, the CRMS-SRIW features an optional cloth grille and Architect Colour Option in 180+ RAL colour schemes. www.alconsaudio.com

DESIGNED FOR sound reinforcement applications that demand a full-range point source solution, Celestion has introduced an updated version of the TFX0515 5-inch ferrite magnet coaxial driver. With a rigid pressed steel chassis and 1.5-inch diameter polyimide voice coil, the redesigned TFX0515 incorporates larger LF and HF voice coils together with a larger ferrite motor for driving the LF element and improving power handling. For HF reproduction, the device features a high-sensitivity, 1-inch silk dome tweeter, driven by a highly compact neodymium

magnet motor. With neodymium having a stronger magnetic force than ferrite, this permits the HF element to be smaller in size. The resulting compact size of the HF unit enables it to be positioned inside the LF driver’s voice coil, at the exact point where the acoustic centres of both sources are “coincident”. The benefit of this is well-matched directivity and time alignment of the LF and HF signal, reportedly delivering maximum signal coherence for a more natural-sounding reproduction. www.celestion.com

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More from less with KV2’s CS Series FOLLOWING CUSTOMER demands, KV2 Audio has developed the new CS Series loudspeaker range. Specially designed to deliver ultra-high vocal intelligibility and music reproduction in a compact form factor, the series also combines a variety of flexible mounting options and simple connectivity, making the CS range suited to the corporate and rental markets. The range consists of three two-way passive loudspeakers: the compact CS6, medium-sized CS8 and larger CS12. Voiced for speech and utilising KV2’s analogue delay line first developed in the ESD Series, these discreet solutions are reportedly able to cover surprisingly large areas with relatively few boxes, providing results in even the most challenging acoustic environments. For rapid deployment, the focus has been placed on handling and quick connectivity. Accessories include a

KV2 pole mount for speaker stands, as well as vertical and horizontal brackets with a precise tilt angle setting. The M10 fixing points cater for other standard accessories, such as spiggots, clamps and couplers. The low-profile trapezoidal cabinet design offers 35° and 55° angles, which also makes the CS range suitable for use in a variety of personalised monitoring situations. The simple connectivity of the boxes, with a 1+/2+ speakON connection (switchable in the field), means less time is wasted during setup, allowing an additional speaker ring to be run independently down the same cable. The CS6 also features speakON connectivity in the top and bottom alongside the rear panel for neater cabling possibilities on a truss. www.kv2audio.com

LD Systems expands portfolio LD SYSTEMS has extended its range of installation solutions with additions to its IMA and IPA amplifier series. Joining the IMA 30 (30W @ 4Ω), the IMA 60 (60W @ 4Ω) mixing amplifier incorporates a wide range of input and output options, including Bluetooth wireless connection of music sources and a multi-stage priority circuit. Housed within a 9.5-inch chassis, both IMA models offer four priority levels for emergency calls, microphone/line inputs, connected music sources and an optional automatic standby mode. Incorporating transformers for each channel, a 70V/100V tap and a lowimpedance output up to 4Ω, a new series

IMA 30

of DSP-based power amplifiers is available in the form of the IPA 412 T (120W) and IPA 424 T (240W) four-channel models. An expansion card slot allows the IPA amplifiers and their DSP parameters to be controlled remotely via Dante (AoIP). Operating as a conventional installation amplifier, the DSP section includes a parametric EQ, compressor, matrix mixer and delay with an ability to select prioritised sources. The IPA series can be operated with LD Systems’ remote control units and paging microphones by using a controller area network-based remote bus (in/out). www.ld-systems.com

ALTI series

Audac adapts for rain and higher altitudes DESIGNED FOR foreground music and BGM applications with open architectures and high ceilings such as large retailers, Audac has added the ALTI4 and ALTI6 to the ALTI series of pendant-style loudspeakers. Both twoway models include an internal 70V/100V transformer with a 16Ω bypass. Housed in a polypropylene enclosure, the ALTI6 incorporates a 6.5-inch driver with a coaxially mounted 1-inch soft dome tweeter fitted with a phase plug. Connections are made through a terminal block connector behind the rear cover, accompanied with a power tap selector switch for the tapping of a 70V/100V line transformer with tappings for 60W, 30W, 15W and a 16Ω bypass connection. Mounting the speaker is performed with a connection cable, including two integrated steel cores for suspensions, two snap-hooks on one end and a dual Gripple

fixation on the other end. The 60W (RMS)-rated ALTI6 includes a 3.5m cable and a speaker rear cover can be added after installation to conceal the connection and suspension on the speaker end. Comprising a 4-inch driver with a coaxially mounted 1-inch tweeter, the ALTI4 is a smaller, 30W (RMS)-rated model. Connections are made through the terminal block connector, accompanied with a power tap selector switch for the tapping of a 70V/100V line transformer (24W, 12W, 6W) and a 16Ω bypass connection. In addition, the Belgian manufacturer has developed two wall-mounted versions of the same speakers in the form of the ALTI4M and ALTI6M. Equipped with a die-cast mounting bracket, the IP65-rated ABS enclosures feature a weatherproof AWX5 connector. www.audac.eu

Renkus-Heinz Cs beyond the stage RENKUS-HEINZ HAS extended the C Series stage monitor family with the introduction of the CA/CX121M. Available in both passive (CX121M) and powered (CA121M) models, the single 12-inch stage monitor comprises next-generation coaxial driver technology and doubles up as a multipurpose loudspeaker. With identical horizontal and vertical off-axis performance, users are provided with greater freedom of movement without changes in frequency response courtesy of acoustically time-aligned point source, phase coherent devices. Capable of delivering a 128dB peak output level, the two-way enclosure features a 1.75-inch voice coil HF compression driver with a 1-inch throat coupled to a complex conic horn. The 90° x 40° (HxV) rotatable Complex Conic horn reportedly eliminates high-frequency beaming and provides wide angle coverage out to 20kHz, while the 12-inch woofer extends the low frequencies down to 60Hz (±3dB). For portable and installed PA functions, the 20.4kg enclosure can be used as a polemounted side-fill or sound reinforcement system. The integration of 12 M10 universal mounting points and an optional mounting yoke extend fixed installation options. Finished in black or white and housed in an 11-ply birch plywood

cabinet, the CA/CX121 also includes discreet recessed handles. The optional SA625 power amplifier matches the power needs of the CA121M, providing optimised protection. Controlled via RHAON II, the SA625’s built-in DSP has eight fully parametric EQ filters, high- and low-shelf and high- and low-pass filters together with a delay of up to 358ms. Remote configuration can be managed via a Windows computer running RHAON II. In addition, a single CA121M can power one additional CX121M with biamplified, processed output via an NL4 output. The CA121M-RD adds Dante digital signal distribution capability, including AES67 compatibility and network redundancy. www.renkus-heinz.com

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Quantum 225 Now more than ever, DiGiCo’s dedicated focus on the creative demands of tomorrow’s productions gives instant confidence to professional engineers. The new Quantum 225 has been designed to work with you, supplying unprecedented power, performance and flexibility, delivered today for less than you imagine.

www.digico.biz

Scan to find out

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Can you afford to ? NOT look at DiGiCo UK Ltd, Unit 10 Silverglade Business Park, Leatherhead Road, Chessington, Surrey KT9 2QL. Tel: +44 (0) 1372 845 600

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PRODUCTS

Powersoft advances its M-Force technology

Precision Devices reveals fruits of 2020 labours

THE M-FORCE 301P02 is a new iteration of Powersoft’s M-Force linear transducer originally launched in 2013. It is described as a complete solution that enables all levels of speaker builders to incorporate the M-Force into any design, both in selfpowered and passive configurations. The motor is factory matched to a purposely built diaphragm, through a newly designed coupling and a lightweight chassis that helps improve thermal dissipation, while the addition of a front spider aims to further stabilise the design. The new

INCORPORATING NEWLY optimised features, Precision Devices has added nine new products, including three sub-bass drivers, to its portfolio. As a natural successor to the PD.1850, the PD.185C003 is suited towards bassreflex and horn-loaded enclosure systems on account of its high power handling, long excursion and optimum linearity. Offering an AES power rating of 1,000W, the PD.1885C0003 offers 99dB sensitivity across its working bandwidth. Features include 5-inch inside/outside winding, a copper voice coil and a “bumped” back plate for enhanced excursion. A vented aluminium chassis and motor system design effectively increases cooling while reducing power compression effects. A BL of 31 T/m and dual suspension system provide linearity with 50mm peak-to-peak travel. Building on the legacy of the PD.186, the PD.185C001 incorporates a traditional ferrite magnet motor system, 5-inch copper voice coil, vented chassis frame and a double spider suspension assembly. Weighing 13kg, the 18-inch sub-bass driver is rated at 1,200W (AES) power handling with a sensitivity of 97dB. Designed as an alternative to the PD.1550, the PD.154C001 is suitable for use in a variety of enclosure designs. With 900W (AES) power handling provided by a 4-inch copper clad aluminium voice coil, the PD.154C001 has a sensitivity of 98.5dB across a frequency range of 45Hz – 1kHz. The composite alloy and steel pole piece produces a uniform magnetic field giving the driver a high BL in excess of 25 T/m and providing linear control of the moving mass. The PD.153C002 succeeds the PD.153ER for two-way or multi-way systems. Operating within a frequency range of 45Hz – 5kHz with 101dB sensitivity across its working bandwidth, the 15-inch PD.153C002 incorporates a

301P02 reference designs have been created to help users increase the SPL capabilities of their systems. All of the designs are free and come along with a cut list and presets that can be managed using the company’s ArmoníaPlus software. The EDM SUB bandpass design features two M-Force 301P02 transducers, which can be built both as a self-powered or passive infra-sub, driven either by an M-Drive amplifier module coupled with a DSPL ETH or an X4L amplifier platform, respectively. When powered by an X4L, the sub can be connected to a Dante network. The design has been optimised for producing ultra-high SPLs down to 18Hz. The four available presets provide coverage for different music programs: Standard, Punch, Infra and a Cardioid version of the Standard preset. The DV SUB is a bandpass cabinet loaded with the M-Force 301P02 transducer for subwoofer applications. The design has been optimised for producing very high SPLs down to 28Hz in a compact package, reportedly making the DV SUB an ideal upgrade for an existing subwoofer,

EDM SUB

DV SUB eliminating non-linear distortions. Two presets are available – Standard and Punch – each of which is also available for cardioid configurations. The CINESUB is a hybrid transmission line cabinet loaded with the M-Force 301P02 transducer for infra and subwoofer applications. The design has been optimised for producing low distortion and high SPLs from 16–120Hz, as per Dolby and THX recommendations. As a result, one single unit can reportedly replace four double 18-inch speakers, making the CINESUB suitable for low-frequency systems in cinemas. The modular design can be used in both single and double cabinet configurations, and both presets are

CINESUB available for linear and minimum phase setups. The Italian manufacturer is also set to release Building Information Models (BIM) for each of its rackmount amplifier platforms, as well as Mover and Deva HD. The BIM files can be inserted into building information modelling software to inform other specialists involved in a project of each product’s particular characteristics. The new models have been created to help a prospective architect or consultant to specify Powersoft products in their BIM project and to keep all parties informed of their operational characteristics. The models will be available for use across a broad range of software platforms, including Revit, AutoCAD, Procore, BIM 360, InEight, Archibus, ISETIA BIM and ProjectWise.

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copper shorting ring and copper CCAW wire. Designed as a high-power mid-bass driver in multi-way systems or as a dedicated woofer in bass-reflex and horn-loaded designs, the PD.124NR1 offers 99dB sensitivity across its working band. The dual spider configuration with siliconebased damping control includes neo-radial motor system technology, while forced air venting and other construction materials effectively manage heat dissipation. Capable of producing 126.5dB SPL in a 45l ported enclosure tuned to 60Hz, the 4-inch CCAW voice coil is capable of handling 1,100W (AES). Following on from the PD.121, the PD.123C001 exhibits 600W (AES) power handling and 99dB across its working frequency band of 45Hz – 4kHz. An optimised vented 3-inch copper voice coil provides enhanced cooling and reduces coil gap turbulence in combination with a vented chassis design. Optimised for midrange performance, the 700W (AES) rated PD.103NR1 features neoradial motor system PD-103NR1 technology that is capable of exhibiting 100dB sensitivity across its 100Hz – 5kHz frequency range. Replacing the PD.615WG and PD.615WG/2 drivers, the PD.615C002 is ideal for waveguide applications. Capable of producing a sensitivity of 105dB and operating within a frequency range of 600Hz – 10kHz, the unit includes a 1.5-inch copper voice coil capable of handling 140W (AES), while the sealed chassis also offers independence from the main enclosure.

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PRODUCTS

Tascam goes live DEVELOPED FOR live broadcasting, podcasting and audio streaming, the TM-70 dynamic microphone from Tascam combines supercardioid and dynamic elements and is

shock mount to reduce low-frequency rumble, a 1.8m cable and a tabletop mic stand. Featuring a unidirectional cardioid design, the TM-82 has been developed for recording and

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Samson signals latest USB designs DESIGNED FOR content creators, presenters, educators and virtual learning applications, Samson has launched the LMU1 lavalier and DEU1 headset broadcast microphone bundles. The UP1 3.5mm to USB Type-C audio adapter converts any headphone, microphone or headset with a 3.5mm plug into a USB-compatible device. Plugging directly into a computer via USB, the low-profile LMU1 omnidirectional lavalier is distinguished by a miniature condenser capsule that can be positioned either close to a subject’s mouth or on clothing. The UP1 3.5mm to USB Type-C audio adapter features a mute button, a 3.5mm headphone output and a 3.5mm mic input. Similarly, the DEU1 headset microphone also features a miniature capsule

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reportedly resistant to ambient noise. With a frequency response of 30Hz – 20kHz, the TM-70 was specifically engineered to capture what it is pointed at, isolating sound sources such as directional dialogue. The mic’s super-cardioid directivity is said to enable users to achieve a clean, clear audio signal that results in “first-class speech intelligibility”. Accessories include a

performance applications. It has a frequency response of 50Hz – 20kHz and is said to capture the character of performances without introducing room sound into the mix. Suitable for both vocals and instruments, the mic comes with a holder that is compatible with all standard microphone stands. www.tascam.com

Ceiling solutions from Vaddio

VADDIO HAS added its Ceiling Speaker and USB Audio Bundle to its collection of conferencing and collaboration products. The Ceiling Speaker has been developed for easy installation and accurate voice reproduction. The two-way speaker is built with a specially designed coaxially mounted cone tweeter and a high-performance 4-inch metalised cone woofer and rubber driver surround. It can be flush mounted in a wall or ceiling and comes with a lightweight ceiling tile brace. RoboFLIP 30 HDBT

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Ceiling Speaker The USB Audio Bundle is a refresh of the manufacturer’s EasyTalk Audio Bundle and includes a pair of the new Ceiling Speakers, two CeilingMIC ceiling microphones and an EasyUSB mixer/amp. Suitable for most conference room and classroom sizes, the bundle provides driverless, plug-andplay audio with popular video conferencing platforms such as Microsoft Teams, Zoom, Google Meet and GotoMeeting. The manufacturer has also released an in-ceiling “flipping” PTZ camera. The RoboFLIP 30 HDBT fully rotates into its enclosure when in standby mode, allowing room occupants full assurance that video

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feeds are not active. The camera provides 1080p60 resolution through its Exmor R CMOS sensor. It is equipped with 30x optical zoom and is suitable for a corporate boardroom, law office, courtroom, medical institution or any application where it’s critical to know the camera’s active status. Users can power the camera with a PoE++ network switch or mid-span power injector for an IP streaming configuration, or connect to an HDBT video switch or OneLINK extension system for a variety of video outputs. Depending on the OneLINK system, users can choose between HD-SDI, HDMI, USB and IP streaming. The camera comes with a presenter-friendly IR remote control, plus Telnet and Serial RS-232 for connection to an external third-party controller. RoboFLIP is also compatible with Vaddio’s recently released Device Controller for touchpanel control of the camera’s pan, tilt, zoom and presets. Integrators can adjust 16 stored PTZ presets, colour, white balance and focus, and access system diagnostic logs and streaming settings.

with an omnidirectional pickup pattern together with a UP1 USB adapter. Available in handheld or presentation microphone configurations, the XPD2m dual-channel digital wireless transmits uncompressed audio for multi-performer applications in the 2.4GHz frequency spectrum. The portable RXD2M tabletop receiver includes two balanced XLR outputs for each channel as well as ¼-inch and 3.5mm mix outputs for connection to a mixer, PA system or audio interface. One-touch pairing syncs the HXD1

handheld or PXD1 beltpack transmitters with the RXD2M receiver. Comprising two HXD1 handhelds with a Q6 dynamic microphone capsule, the XPD2m wireless transmitters offer 30m of wireless range with up to 20 hours of dual AA battery operation. The Presentation system comes with two LM7 unidirectional lavalier microphones, two DE5 low-profile omnidirectional headset microphones along with two PXD1 beltpack transmitters. www.samsontech.com

B&C adds FB464 passive crossover AVAILABLE an asymmetrical IN both 8Ω slope crossover and 16Ω at 3.6kHz versions, B&C without reducing Speakers has efficiency. The designed the Italian manufacturer FB464 passive claims that this crossover for the crossover frequency DCX464 coaxial best balances compression energy between the driver. two diaphragms for Specifically minimum distortion designed at all output levels. for use in Series protection conjunction is additionally with the ME464 provided by The DCX464 with the ME464 and the FB464 300Hz horn, the industrial filament accurate point bulbs which source solution promotes a flat, highprevent overpower or inconsistent tonal fidelity response. The FB464 crossover balance at very high output. phase aligns the mid- and high-frequency www.bcspeakers.com elements of the DCX464 and implements

www.legrandav.com

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PRODUCTS

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Audio-Technica sets new boundaries DESIGNED FOR surface flush-mount applications such as conferencing, Audio-Technica has unveiled several new variations of its ES945 omnidirectional condenser and ES947 cardioid condenser boundar y microphones. Enhancing shielding immunity from radio frequency inter ference, the six new models include UniGuard RFI. Available in black or white, the existing standard ES945 and ES947 models are being replaced and enhanced by the IPX4 water-resistant ES945O/XLR

(omnidirectional) and ES947C/XLR (cardioid) versions. The ES945O/TB3 and ES947C/TB3 miniature, spacesaving versions are ideally suited for inconspicuous tabletop, ceiling and wall mounting. Specifically intended for conferencing, the existing ES945/LED and ES947/LED models have been upgraded with the ES945O/FM3 and ES947C/ FM3 mics. Termed FM3 on account of the inherent three-pin XLR output connector, both mics feature a two-state RGB LED ring (seven selectable colours + OFF) to

indicate mute status and a touch-sensitive capacitive switch that enables local muting. New to the ES series, the ES945O/FM5 and ES947C/FM5 are similar to the FM3 models but incorporate a five-pin XLR output connector. With the FM5 models, the switch can be configured to toggle between mute and live audio. In addition, the microphone’s external contact closure allows it to be set up to trigger an external device such as a camera or lighting. www.audio-technica.com

New ES945 and ES947 models

PRESONUS HAS announced the launch of its ioStation 24c, a two-channel 192kHz audio interface combined with the functionality of the FaderPort USB production controller to provide a holistic production hub. A keyboard and mouse handle the tasks they are better suited to, while the ioStation 24c handles the mix. The ioStation 24c provides 100mm touchsensitive, motorised fader transport controls as well as the Session Navigator section, which provides access to eight missioncritical functions. The ioStation 24c audio interface features two of PreSonus’ XMAX Class-A analogue microphones. High-quality converters provide 115dB of dynamic range to capture complex musical harmonics naturally. The result, according to the manufacturer, is clear, consistent audio that makes mixing easier and creates a polished sound and a faster process.

Meeting the recent demand for microphones that can be used at home for webcasting, meetings, podcasting or general home studio use, PreSonus has also announced a new entry in the USB

outfitted with presets, loopback audio and selectable polar patterns. Revelator is equipped with the same EQ and compression algorithms found in the company’s StudioLive Series III mixers. Eight user presets are provided to customise sound using the StudioLive Fat Channel controls available in Universal Control. Up to four presets can be stored, quickly selectable via the Preset button. The mic also provides two stereo streams for loopback audio for applications such as video conferencing, recording gameplay or showcasing the audio in a YouTube video while adding commentar y. Two streams for loopback audio allow users to mix and record the audio from two different applications on a computer, along with their voice, at the

same time using the inter face in Universal Control. Built-in monitoring and an onboard headphone amplifier facilitate mixing in real time. Last but not least, PreSonus has launched Sphere, a new membership package that includes licences for the complete collection of PreSonus’ software solutions for recording, mixing, scoring and producing. It includes Studio One Professional, Notion, ever y single PreSonus add-on for both applications, plus additional sample and loop libraries. In addition to these tools, PreSonus Sphere members are also given cloud collaboration tools and storage, the ability to chat with Studio One exper ts from around the globe, access to exclusive livestreams, masterclass videos, promotions, sneak peeks and events.

Polished audio from PreSonus

ioStation 24c microphone category. Revelator is a new bus-powered, USB-C-compatible microphone

www.presonus.com

Dicentis flushes with pride REDESIGNED TO encourage constructive dialogues, Bosch has enhanced the Dicentis discussion system series by creating a custom flush-mounted version. Measuring 56mm x 100mm x 80mm, the flush-mounted device installs into a tabletop to ensure an uncluttered work area. The custom range offers bespoke

software modules. An integrated Near Field Communication (NFC) card reader enables quick par ticipant identification and voting for which par ticipants can use an existing authorised NFC registration card.

conference solutions that can be adapted to a customer’s needs. The Dicentis discussion unit comprises a 4.3-inch touchscreen display that can fold flat when not in use and a local language user inter face. Device functionality, such as voting or language selection, can be enhanced by adding additional Dicentis

www.boschbuildingtechnologies.com

Schedule meetings from the cloud KRAMER HAS unveiled KronoMeet, an enterprise-class, cloud-based room scheduling and management platform for KronoMeet touchpanels. The solution is said to streamline and automate the management side of room bookings in addition to providing live notifications to meeting participants. KronoMeet is designed to work seamlessly with the manufacturer’s management software and AV products, enabling users to sync room management with AV management and deployment. KronoMeet is fully integrated with widely used scheduling platforms such as Google Calendar, Microsoft Office 365 and Microsoft Exchange, and can be scaled to meet the needs of both small

businesses with a few meeting rooms up to a large corporation. Integration with VIA collaboration devices enables automatic

reminders on the main display when the meeting is nearly over and another meeting will be starting.

In addition to KronoMeet, Kramer has introduced a new scaler/switcher for 4K@60 (4:4:4) HDMI, VGA and composite video signals. The VP-551X scales the video and provides options to use the embedded HDMI audio or breakout audio from one of 10 analogue audio input signals. After processing and scaling, the embedded AV signal is sent to the HDMI and the HDBaseT outputs simultaneously, as well as to a balanced stereo audio output, S/PDIF digital output and a pair of loudspeaker outputs. The scaler/switcher also provides two independent microphone inputs (each with optional 48V phantom power) for mixing, switching or talk-over. www.kramerav.com

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PRODUCTS

Biamp extends appeal of Desono, Devio and TesiraFORTÉ platforms INITIALLY DESIGNED for huddle rooms and smaller conference spaces, Biamp’s Devio platform of conference room signal processors has been expanded with Devio SCX. Created for larger conference spaces, the one-touch automatic discovery, roomtuning and commissioning feature Biamp Launch is included. By tuning the audio, Biamp Launch simplifies BYOM (bring your own meeting) scenarios by measuring the acoustic characteristics of a room before automatically applying signal processing, AEC, speaker tuning and noise reduction. Biamp Launch supports Biamp Parlé microphones and a range of other Biamp network peripherals, including the AMP450 range of PoE+-powered amplifiers, the HD-1 dialer and the EX-UBT USB extender. Joining the existing Devio SCR-20 and SCR-25 models targeting smaller spaces, Devio SCX 400 and SCX 800 support up to four and eight Parlé microphones, respectively. As the first Devio product to feature VoIP, Devio SCX includes five

Devio SCX

family. Designed for high-fidelity music or speech reinforcement in indoor and outdoor applications, the surface-mount loudspeakers are available in 6.5-, 8- and 10-inch two-way coaxial versions in addition to a 10-inch subwoofer. All EN-54-24 certified full-range Desono EX Series

models include 70V/100V transformers and low-impedance inputs. Flexible mount and orientation options are available in the form of the ClickMount Pan-Tilt Bracket or the indexing ClickMount U-Bracket. www.biamp.com

BRAND NEW PTC-280 BY DATAVIDEO Datavideo is proud to present its first true UltraHD camera to the market, the PTC-280. This UltraHD camera shoots image in resolutions up to 3840x2160p60 with 20x optical zoom. Datavideo cameras are compatible with multiple camera controllers, such as the IP controlled RMC-300A, but also our Android and iOS app. A streaming output is seamlessly compatible with dvCloud and other streaming networks.

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(four PoE+-powered) network ports to connect other Biamp devices, together with a USB port to connect to UC host platforms. Devio SCX is fully supported by the SageVue AV device monitoring and management platform that provides full access to the status of Biamp devices while promoting other functions such as scheduling, firmware and system updates. Designed to simplify meeting room deployments such as UC-based or VoIP conferencing applications, Biamp has introduced TesiraFORTÉ X. The openarchitecture meeting room series combines the signal processing of the original TesiraFORTÉ system with streamlined TesiraCONNECT network connectivity in a new, smaller chassis. Supporting both Dante and AVB connectivity, the TesiraFORTÉ X Series currently includes three models with mounting hardware included. The X 400, X 800 and X 1600 offer four, eight and 16 channels of AEC respectively for up to 16 Biamp

supporting HID synchronisation between Tesira and soft codec applications. TesiraFORTÉ X also pairs with Biamp’s Modena wireless presentation systems for BYOD conferencing applications. With the launch of the EX Series, Biamp has extended the Desono loudspeaker

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More information on www.datavideo.com May–June 2021 PRO AVL MEA 59

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PRODUCTS

Televic shapes the future of meetings MEETING SOLUTIONS provider Televic has unveiled a new wireless conference product range. Confidea Flex G4 wireless has been designed for a quick and hassle-free setup. Able to fit in a compact and easily transportable case, the solution is based on WiFi5 technology, the system that uses a combination of advanced techniques to improve the quality and reliability of the signal reception. Each wireless unit comes with a compact Li-ion battery that offers 12 hours of autonomy on a two-hour charge. A second battery can be added in a dual compartment to double the meeting time to 24 hours. The device can also run on a standard USB-C charger. With Confidea Flex G4, Televic reports that wireless meetings stay

private and confidential. For added security, features include advanced WPA2 Enterprise encryption and individual unit authentication.

Sound Devices and Sony slot in together PROVIDING COMPATIBILITY with Sony’s proprietary slot for wireless receivers, Sound Devices has collaborated with the Japanese manufacturer to create the A-15PIN adapter for the A10-RX slot-in receiver. Many Sony camcorders feature Sony’s proprietary slot, which was exclusively compatible with Sony DWX/ UWP wireless slot-in receivers. With the A-15PIN, the non-Sony wireless system can natively slot into Sony cameras and pass two-channel digital audio with no extra cables. Supported by A10-RX v3.00 firmware, the A-15PIN D-type cradle extends compatibility to the A10 Digital Wireless System. An A10-RX is

affixed to the A-15PIN and then screwed to the wireless slot on the Sony camcorder or extension unit. The latest Mic2Wav 3.0 companion application connects the A10-RX in its A-15PIN via USB, allowing the transfer of user group files and updates to the A10-RX. www.sounddevices.com

www.televic-conference.com

Q-Sys adds Professional Tier NEW CLOUD management capabilities and processing options have been introduced to QSC’s Q-Sys platform with the availability of the Professional Tier feature set for Q-Sys Reflect Enterprise Manager, the manufacturer’s remote monitoring and management service. The new features allow both remote access to UCIs for helpdesk applications, as well as remote system and design file update capabilities. The Professional Tier joins the existing Basic and Standard Tiers for Enterprise Manager, offering end users and managed service providers a range of cloud-based service options for connected Q-Sys systems. The Professional Tier provides additional tools to truly centralise operations support for geographically disparate AV systems, as well as reduce the need for technicians to be onsite in order to perform system updates. The new Remote UCI feature provides the

Professional Tier

EXTRON HAS extended the 4K/60 HDMI product portfolio with the addition of the DTP3 T 202 transmitter and DTP3 R 201 receiver. Capable of providing up to 100m signal extension of HDMI and bidirectional RS-232 signals over XTP DTP 22 shielded twisted pair cable, the extenders support video resolutions without compression up to 4K/60 at 4:4:4 colour sampling and comply with HDCP 2.3. The low-profile transmitter features an HDMI loop-through input to support a local monitor and the receiver provides stereo audio de-embedding for streamlined integration. In addition to enabling uncompressed extension of video data rates up to 18Gbps, the DTP3 Series supports HDR, Deep Colour up to 12-bit,

3D and embedded HD lossless audio formats. The DTP3 T 202 transmitter is capable of simultaneously transmitting bidirectional RS-232 signals from a control system for AV device control. EDID Minder technology ensures power can be delivered from either the transmitter or receiver, allowing both devices to share one power supply. Designed to pair exclusively with the IPCP Pro xi Series of control processors, the IPL EXP I/O Series of IP Link Pro expansion interfaces are securely configured with Global Configurator Professional or programmed with Global Scripter. Housed in 1U, 1⁄4-rack enclosures, the PoE interfaces can be controlled and monitored over a network. They can additionally mount

Extron extends

DTP3 Series

ability to interact with a UCI for any Q-Sys Core connected to Enterprise Manager via a standard web browser, enabling a central support team to resolve operational user issues without sending technicians onsite. In addition, the Remote Q-Sys Designer feature enables users to troubleshoot, update and redeploy design files to systems from anywhere, without the need for complex network or remote desktop configurations. Features within the Professional Tier require a system upgrade to the newly released Q-Sys Designer Software v9.0 or higher. In addition to the inclusion of Professional Tier features, the latest Designer Software brings enhanced Microsoft Teams Rooms integration, new Core and loudspeaker options and support for software-based Dante updates.

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smartphone onto a display. Bypassing the need for software, the ShareLink Pro WFA 100 is a Wi-Fi Miracast adapter that promotes the sharing of content from a Windows 10 device to a ShareLink Pro device. By connecting to a USB port on a ShareLink Pro 1100 or ShareLink Pro 500, it can be discovered by Windows 10 PCs. Content is shared by selecting the desired ShareLink Pro device and mirroring the screen from within Windows. Content shared via Miracast can be presented on the ShareLink Pro display together with content shared via the ShareLink Pro app, Apple mirroring, WebShare browser sharing or the HDMI input.

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IPL EXP I/O Series on or under tables, lecterns, on projector poles and table legs using an optional Extron ZipClip 200 mounting kit. Using the Extron PURE3 codec, the NAV E 511 and NAV SD 511 fibre pro AV-overIP encoder and scaling decoder transmits ultra-low-latency, real-time, lossless video at resolutions up to 4K@60Hz with 4:4:4 chroma sampling, audio, USB and Ethernet signals over standard 1Gbps optical Ethernet. Fully compatible with NAV 1 and 10Gbps encoders and decoders, the NAV 511 encoders and decoders enable the secure deployment of AV signals from one to thousands of endpoints. Designed for collaborating, ShareLink Pro devices enable the presentation of wired or wireless content from a computer, tablet or

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A&H expands AHM control options ALLEN & HEATH has released new drivers for its AHM-64 matrix processor to facilitate control from Crestron and AMX. The drivers add existing control options, including IP hardware controllers and wall plates, GPIO interfaces and Allen & Heath’s BYODfriendly Custom Control App. Based on the TCP/IP control protocol for the AHM-64, the drivers enable integration with control systems. They also offer modules for all key routing parameters and represent a starting point for building user interfaces in various installations. Control elements include levels and mutes for input and output channels, crosspoint levels and mutes

together with preset recall. An AHM-64 driver for the Kramer control platform is also available. www.allen-heath.com

KLANG announces new hardware controller KLANG:TECHNOLOGIES HAS held an online launch to unveil its KLANG:kontroller hardware controller for KLANG immersive processors. It has been designed in response to requests for a standalone hardware controller that offers the same mixing functionality as the KLANG:app, combined with a studio-grade Dante headphone amp. The hardware reportedly delivers fast tactile user control of channels, groups and immersive mixing via an intuitive interface. Features include relative DCA group mixing and full single channel control via eight push rotary encoders. The

KLANG:kontroller

studio-grade headphone amplifier is said to deliver crystal-clear audio for in-ear monitors and high-impedance headphones, with both 3.5mm as well as 6.3mm stereo TRS connectors. Two XLR outputs can be connected to, for example, wireless in-ear transmitters. Installation-friendly features like PoE, remote setup via the KLANG:app and automatic Dante routing reportedly streamline any stage or orchestra pit. KLANG:kontroller gives musicians full control of all relevant functions, while the engineer can still overview and control all mixes via the KLANG:app or DiGiCo SD or Q series consoles. KLANG has also announced the launch of the 1U KLANG:vokal immersive mixing processor, which allows up to 12 musicians to select up to 24 mono or stereo channels out of 64 Dante and MADI inputs. Mixes can be sent out via MADI to a console or via Dante to KLANG:kontroller. Based on KLANG’s ultra-low-latency FPGA core, KLANG:vokal offers 12 mixes of 24 mono or stereo inputs at 48kHz and 96kHz, including the company’s Root-Intensity EQs. www.klang.com

LynTec keeps a narrow profile

MEASURING LESS than half the width of a standard panel, LynTec has unveiled its Narrow Profile Panelboards. The 9-inchwide, column-width panels can hold up to 42 controllable circuit breakers and can be mounted in a structural support column on the rigging. The boards have been designed for mega churches or other spaces with unique infrastructure requirements. Customers can mix and match the boards with the manufacturer’s power control panels, including the RPC Remote Control Breaker panels, RPCR Automated Relay panels and NPAC Multi-Circuit Rackmount units within the same network on a single interface. From a single IP address, customers can set up, control and monitor all their AVL sequences or controllable lighting zones across the facility.

Lectrosonics adds two transmitters to 941MHz frequency band LECTROSONICS HAS added the SMWB/ E07-941 (single AA battery) and SMDWB/ E07-941 (dual AA battery) to its Digital Hybrid Wireless SM Series to cover the Part-74 licence-only frequency range from 941.525–959.825MHz. The transmitters have the same dimensions and features as the earlier UHF SMWB and SMDWB units, including the ability to either act as a transmitter or as a body-worn recorder. RF power is selectable at 100mW, 50mW or 25mW. The models feature the standard TA5 connector with servo-bias mic input, as used on all previous SM Series units and

all current TA5 beltpack units, such as the LT and LMb. Any lavalier microphones wired for these other Lectrosonics transmitters will also work on the new models. Accessories

for the existing SMWB/SMDWB series – including pouches, belt clips and battery eliminators – are also compatible. The units can be configured either as a transmitter or a recorder, with files stored on Micro SD card memory, allowing use as body-worn recorders. Audio files are recorded in the industry-standard Broadcast Wave (.WAV) format at 24-bit/44.1kHz sample rate. The Micro SD memory card can also be used to update firmware in the field. The transmitters feature the same large, backlit LCD found on the latest Lectrosonics transmitters, including the LT, HHa, LMb and DBu. They also include an IR port to allow for quick setup when using any IR equipped receiver, such as the SRc-941 or Venue 2-941. This is said to allow for easy integration with a larger wireless system using Lectrosonics Wireless Designer software for frequency management and system monitoring. www.lectrosonics.com

SSL expands DAW control THE UF8 advanced studio DAW controller is expandable to a 32-channel control surface with integration for all major DAW platforms. It has been designed for music creation, production and mixing, postproduction and webcasting. The 360° control software manages multi-controller configurations, customised user keys and DAW switching across multiple layers, and reportedly allows for seamless switching between numerous sessions. Features include 100mm touch-sensitive faders, high-resolution colour displays, eight endless rotary encoders, custom workflows

(five banks of eight user keys and three quick keys totalling 43 assignable keys per UF8), a multipurpose channel encoder, mouse scroll emulation (providing control of any plugin parameter users hover the mouse over), and workflow-ready templates. Users can switch control between three simultaneously connected DAWs. The UF8 is powered by the SSL 360° Mac/PC application and includes SSL Native Vocalstrip 2 and Drumstrip plugins. Four UF8s can be chained together to create a 32-channel SSL control surface. www.solidstatelogic.com

www.lyntec.com

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Expansion on the cards for Eventide Palmer hosts Grand Audition PALMER HAS revealed the 24-channel Grand Audition MKII switching system. Designed for routing in showrooms, sales floors and multiroom applications, the 2U rack-mountable unit is equipped with 16 mono or eight stereo outputs and eight parallel subwoofer outputs. Channel selection and volume control can be managed individually or as a stereo pair directly from the front panel or via a browserbased web interface, including a tablet or laptop. Multiple mode selection enables several connected loudspeakers to be simultaneously selected, while loudspeaker channels can be defined and individually

named for fixed or recurring setups. The Grand Audition MKII’s output combinations can be freely configured, promoting it as a control centre for measurements. Alternatively, a signal source can be supplied to a maximum of 24 headphone amplifiers in conferencing applications. Playback sources including mixers, CD players or a digital audio workstation can be routed via two balanced XLR inputs. A built-in USB media player can also access WAV, AIF, FLAC, MP3 and OGG data formats. www.palmer-germany.com

Now and Zen WITH THE Zen Go Synergy Core, Antelope Audio has created its first bus-powered, portable 4x8 USB-C audio interface. Incorporating AD/DA converter technology together with the Synergy Core on-board effects processing platform and a 64-bit Acoustically Focused Clocking algorithm, the plug-and-play interface supports sample rates of up to 24-bit/192kHz.

I/O has been included on RCA connectors for expansion together with a dedicated In-Plane Switching display for signal monitoring. Direct monitoring mixers provide real-time, hardwarebased monitoring with on-board effects and a secondary USB-C connection has been included for external power supply and reverse charging. Some 80+ analogue-modelled, real-time effects can be selected during live tracking or

Synergy Core incorporates two linear and discreet transistor-based preamps in the form of two MIC-XLR and line/Hi-Z ¼-inch jack connections and two independent (HP1 and HP2) headphone outputs with dedicated DAC (digital-to-analogue converter). A stepped analogue rotary encoder provides precise gain adjustment and an alternative monitor line out on RCA connectors is directly fed from the main DAC. In addition, an S/PDIF digital

postproduction, while 37 emulations can be accessed, including Impressor (stereo knee compressor/limiter) and Opto-2A (tube optical compressor/limiter). The combination of DSP and FPGA processors provide real-time effects and direct monitoring, bypassing the need for a host computer CPU or an external DSP accelerator.

EVENTIDE HAS unveiled its Pro Tools expansion card for its multichannel effects platform, the H9000. The card allows Pro Tools HDX or HD Native users to connect the H9000 directly for up to 32 channels of I/O with ProTools via its Primary DigiLink

Launched alongside the expansion card is the release of 1.3 software for the H9000. Included in the release is enhanced MIDI functionality, Pro Tools support and two new effect algorithms and their associated presets from the

port or it can be daisy-chained with other Pro Tools interfaces via the Secondary DigiLink port via the included 12-foot mini-Digilink cable. The H9000 can be either slaved to an external master clock via loop sync/word clock or can be the master clock.

H9 stompbox: TriceraChorus is a three voice stereo chorus based on the classic DynoMyPiano and Harmadillo, a harmonic tremolo algorithm. www.eventide.com

Scorpio bitten by CEDAR’s sdnx HAVING SUPPLIED a small number of products to location sound recordists over 15 years, CEDAR Audio technology is available for the first time in a portable mixer/recorder. The development of sdnx noise suppression technology has been specifically created for Sound Devices’ Scorpio and other 8-Series mixer/recorders. Sound Devices believes the enhancement ensures the capture of dialogue in noisy environments. Available in 2-, 4- and 8-instance configurations, the sdnx can be run on any combination of channels and busses selected at sample rates up to and including 96kHz. The sdnx differs from hardware solutions such as the CEDAR DNS 2 and DNS 8D dialogue noise suppressors by offering a

modified algorithm optimised for Sound Devices systems and a simplified user interface with just a single attenuation control per instance. Together with its near-zero latency making it ideal for use in the field, clean audio can be recorded for dailies and confidence checking, in addition to providing viable alternatives to the mixes and isos supplied for postproduction. In brief, CEDAR Audio has also announced its approval of the Dante Virtual Soundcard for CEDAR Cambridge, with the hope of providing a cost-effective way to connect its flagship system to Dante networks. www.cedaraudio.com www.soundevices.com

www.antelopeaudio.com

DirectOut + Vivivaldy = ViViD A COLLABORATION between DirectOut and Vivivaldy has resulted in a customised service promoting easier remote production setups using standard internet connections. ViViD packages Vivivaldy VPN solutions in combination with DirectOut products that support Ravenna, including PRODIGY.MP and EXBOX.RAV. DirectOut’s Ravenna implementation allows uncompressed real-time audio-over-IP transmission with ultra-low latency with buffer times up to 500ms. The PRODIGY.MP components used in the ViViD packages include microphone pre-amplifier modules to collect analogue signals on location and headphone outputs

for monitoring purposes. The built-in DSP also allows local equalisation and mixing at zero latency. The Vivivaldy infrastructure ensures connection at distant locations communicating at ultra-low latency of less than 15ms to enable live cross-monitoring. DirectOut’s Ravenna to MADI converter, EXBOX.RAV, collects the broadcast feeds with the audio packets sent over the network at a higher latency to ensure reliable transmission. The globcon control software extends remote management functionality at any location on the network. www.directout.eu www.vivivaldy.com

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Klotz advances to D2 AVAILABLE IN standard lengths from 0.3–20m, Klotz AIS has added the D2 cables to its family of professional digital leads. Designed to transmit digital audio signals in compliance with AES/EBU, the D2 cables can also be used for analogue microphone signals or digital DMX lighting control. Within the 6.5mm diameter PVC outer jacket that provides mechanical stability without compromising flexibility, dense shielding and a spiral shield combine to

offer interference-free signal transmission over long distances. Closely twisted pairs of conductors boost resistance against external electromagnetic interference fields. Based on the OT2000 cable and featuring Klotz’s own (nickel) or Neutrik’s (black chrome) three-pin XLR connectors, the D2 has a characteristic impedance of 110Ω low capacitance and attenuation.

LEA’s CONNECTSERIES cable IN AN effort to reduce any points of friction for users of its CONNECTSERIES amplifiers, LEA Professional has created a dedicated custom cable to aid users that are attempting to input an

unbalanced RCA signal through the amp’s analogue inputs, saving them the need to wire their own. The new cable, named the LEA RCAF-2, is a female RCA to Amphenol Anytek balanced threepin connector specifically for CONNECTSERIES products. The cable is a 25.5mm-long, 22 AWG (0.33mm2) two-conductor plus ground-shielded audio cable with a nickel-plated female RCA connector. www.leaprofessional.com

www.klotz-ais.com

Tasker fights fire FOLLOWING NEW CPR legislation, Tasker has increased the standards of its medium-risk class (Cca) and high-risk class (B2ca) cables. In addition, the Italian manufacturer has launched a new range of products consisting of different sections (2x1.00, 2x1.50, 2x2.50mm²) in OFC red copper, stranded, with the following codes: TSK401, TSK402 and TSK403 CPR Cca. New microphone and DMX cables have also been added in the audio category, both with a

tinned copper braided shield covering 85% and with a section of 2x0.35mm². The C128 CPR Cca and the TSK1038 CPR Cca provide a clear signal up to 100m away. In the video sector, the manufacturer has been focusing its attention on 6G- and 12G-SDI and developed the TSK1078 CPR Cca (0.80/3.50/5.00mm) and the

TSK1079 CPR (1.13/4.80/6.80mm). They are suitable for applications up to 60m and 80m at 8K, respectively, according to the latest SMPTE 2082 transmission standard. Finally, the Tasker C722 B2ca is a LAN Cat6 SF/UTP, 4x2x0.25mm² section with multiple operative applications and is approved for the maximum risk class according to CPR legislation. www.tasker.it

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Mackie builds on a legacy MACKIE HAS released four new analogue mixers building on the legacy of the original Onyx 1620 mixer release back in 2004. In contrast to that model which sported a FireWire interface, the new Onyx8, Onyx12, Onyx16 and Onyx24 models have replaced this with USB connectivity. The models are named according to the number of tracks that each can record simultaneously. The Onyx mixers are capable of high-resolution 24-bit/92kHz recording with low-noise, highheadroom mic preamps offering up to 60dB of gain. The inputs comprise a combination of mono and stereo channels and sport a three-

band Perkins EQ based on British EQs found on mixing consoles from the 1960s and 1970s. The mono inputs feature semi-parametric midrange EQs and the stereo channels offer a fixed mid-band. USB connectivity allows all channels of multitrack audio to be sent to a DAW, while SD card compatibility enables users to record mixes without a computer. The mixers can also stream two stereo channels from a DAW, along with the option to hook up a Bluetooth device to stream audio into a channel. Moving across to loudspeakers, the manufacturer has also debuted the SRT series of powered speakers. There are three new

d& 1,600W speakers in the series – the 10-inch SRT210, 12-inch SRT212 and 15-inch SRT215 – intended for use by working musicians and DJs that are seeking an upgrade in sound quality without breaking the bank. In addition to being “built like a tank”, the cabinets boast maximum SPL – 133dB on the SRT215 – and feature Advanced Impulse DSP, input overload protection and wireless streaming and control. www.mackie.com

Pliant brings CrewCom into smaller applications SUITED FOR users that need an intercom with more capabilities than its MicroCom products, but without the requirement for roaming or the full feature set of its larger CrewCom systems, Pliant Technology has introduced the CrewCom CB2 professional wireless intercom system.

The CB2 is a full-duplex, install-friendly solution for small- and mid-level applications that require a reliable wireless intercom with superior RF coverage and range, such as theatres, houses of worship and other small events.

Available in both 900MHz and 2.4GHz frequency options, as well as 900MHz for Oceania and 2.4GHz CE-compliant models, the system includes the CrewCom CB2 base station and up to six CRP-12 two-channel radio packs. This provides customers with two intercom channels as well as interconnectivity to industry-standard, two- and four-wire intercom systems. An added feature of the CB2 is system expandability. Two CB2 base stations can be connected and the audio synced to create one system with up to 12 full-duplex users.

Two separate CB2 systems can also be synced to ensure RF performance if they need to be co-located in the same RF area. Furthermore, the CB2 can also sync and be co-located in the same coverage area as an existing CrewCom system. The solution’s CrewCom CRP-12 radio packs feature the same batteries as CrewCom, making the batteries compatible with its 6+6 Drop-In radio pack and battery charger. The system is also compatible with Pliant’s complete line of SmartBoom headsets. The out-of-the-box wireless system is said to boast simple setup and its IP65rated beltpacks are described as durable and easy to operate.

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Wohler upgrades its iVAM1-1 monitor WOHLER TECHNOLOGIES’ iVAM1-1 16-channel audio-video monitor has received an upgrade in the form of new AoIP and analogue plugin expansion cards. When upgrading the iVAM1-1 to monitor Dante, Ravenna or 2110-30 signals, the AoIP card is included. Customers can specify either Dante or Ravenna and both options are capable of monitoring 2110-30 signals. The card also includes primary and secondary RJ45 Ethernet ports and a 1GB network SFP cage capable of monitoring AoIP input streams via fibre input. A TOSLINK (SPDIF) input connector, often used to monitor the output of set-top boxes, is included for convenience. For users requiring additional analogue inputs, the new analogue option card offers a further eight balanced inputs and outputs on DB-25 connectors as well as a TOSLINK (SPDIF) connector.

iVAM1-1 A free firmware update has also been released by Wohler for its flagship iAM12G-SDI when purchased with the Dolby Atmos option. Two new screens have been added to the inter face to help users visualise the location of each audio bed or dynamic channel for both actual and dynamic channels. The first screen shows the listening room with a 3D front view, with a representation of the video

programme screen location shown in the centre as a white rectangle. The various objects are shown as named channels for the audio bed objects or as numbered channels for the dynamic objects. Dynamic objects move around through the 3D screen as they move in the programme material, with the objects appearing according to what is present in the Dolby Atmos bitstream. A maximum

Dynamic EQ for MC2 and XTA CELEBRATING 20 years since XTA launched what is arguably the first digital implementation of dynamic EQ in an SIDD processor, the manufacturer has released a firmware update that introduces dynamic EQ in the XTA DPA and MC2 Delta amplifiers. Up to two bands of dynamic EQ are available per input and, as well as managing the four quadrants of dynamic processing (boost below, boost above,

number of 16 objects can be displayed simultaneously. The second screen shows the listening room from a 3D top-down view. This display gives a representation of the video programme screen location, shown in the centre top (front wall) as a white rectangle. Also shown are audio bed objects, which are in fixed positions as speakers in the listening room. Either dynamic channel objects or audio bed objects can be shown in the Dolby Atmos 3D Room Visualiser. Furthermore, a Metadata screen is also included, providing three sets of data: traditional Dolby metadata, loudness data and presentation data, which provides X-Y-Z coordinates for the position of objects in the 3D Room Visualiser. www.wohler.com

cut below, cut above), they can be configured as a PEQ, lo shelf, hi shelf or full bandwidth dynamic control. OSC Control has also been implemented within XTA DPA and MC2 Delta DSP products with the latest update. This enables gain control from devices such as phones, tablets and mixing consoles – any OSC-enabled device can now control an XTA/ MC2 system over a standard Ethernet network.

XTA’s DPA 100

www.mc2-audio.co.uk www.xta.co.uk

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PRODUCTS

d&b evolves to revolve in the 360 Soundscape IN RESPONSE to customer feedback and ensuring preparedness for events postlockdown, d&b audiotechnik has made new advanced features available for its Soundscape immersive audio system. A DS100 Signal Engine lies at the heart of the Soundscape system to provide system configuration and matrix functionality in either standalone mode or combined with one or both of two software modules together. Operation is enabled with En-Scene objectbased positioning and En-Space room emulation software, with the latest feature update including significant developments for the En-Scene and En-Space tools. The En-Scene software module is an object-based positioning tool for the 64 audio inputs on the DS100 Signal Engine. The sound object routing control brings individual level adjustment and mute for each sound object within each section (Function Group) of a loudspeaker system. This control option offers flexibility for a wide range of acoustic settings and multiple audience areas. Sound

object routing ensures that a sound designer or mixer has ultimate control over the imaging and sound object performance as they relate to each Function Group in a distributed or immersive system. In addition to sound object

Sennheiser introduces TruVoicelift for TCC2 COMBINING THE convenience of Sennheiser’s ceiling mic array with voice amplification, the availability of TruVoicelift firmware marks a new chapter for the

DANTE AV networking technology developer, Audinate, has made a software development kit (SDK) available for manufacturers of Armbased audio products. Designed to reduce costs in addition to conserving space, the

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SDK allows manufacturers to deploy Dante audio networking as on-chip software in their products. The Dante Embedded Platform SDK provides the required tools to develop Dante-enabled products built upon 32- and 64-bit Arm Cortex-A processors using a Linux operating system, and supports online licence activation for OEMs. Ensuring reliability, the SDK allows manufacturers to validate their own designs for performance and capability. In addition to support for Arm Cortex-A processors, a Dante Embedded Platform SDK for x86-based audio products is currently in development. www.audinate.com

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TruVoicelift also includes a TCC2 feedback prevention mute function to stop any feedback should the levels become too loud. During pauses in speaking, if a pre-

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routing, the update delivers two new function group modes for En-Scene in the form of Delay line embedded and Outfill embedded that support advanced 360° loudspeaker configurations. This update addresses

those installations that use delay lines for the audience areas within a surround (360) Soundscape setup to distribute a higher number of small loudspeakers or to enable immersive sound for larger audience areas. En-Space room emulation software provides ease of setup and operation to access acoustic emulations. Suitable for a range of applications from orchestral room treatments to virtual acoustic environments, En-Space uses the sonic signatures of some of the most acoustically renowned performance spaces and provides individual adjustment parameters to make these a reality. En-Space now supports delay lines delivering room emulation on all loudspeaker function groups in a Soundscape loudspeaker system. The impulse response (IR) assignment has also been optimised for the simultaneous use of multiple instances of the same function group mode, such as a delay line, within one loudspeaker system.

TruVoicelift in an education setting TeamConnect Ceiling 2 (TCC2) microphone array. Designed for use in corporate and higher education institutions, TCC2 has become a leading microphone solution for conferencing audio in business and distance learning applications. Existing TCC2 users can add the TruVoicelift functionality by installing the free firmware update (1.6.4) via the new version of the Sennheiser Control Cockpit app (4.3.0). Depending on the size and configuration of the room, additional TCC2 microphones can be installed as audience mics to create a completely touchless microphone solution that reduces potential hygiene risks. Powered by an advanced frequency shift algorithm that delivers added dB gain,

defined audio threshold is not reached, a noise gate is activated, muting TCC2 to prevent any background noise from being amplified. All TruVoicelift settings can be conveniently controlled via the Sennheiser Control Cockpit app, allowing the creation of priority zones, from areas where audio is predominantly picked up. Advanced exclusion zones can also be identified for targeting and excluding noise sources, such as air conditioning or ventilation equipment with accuracy. The Sennheiser Control Cockpit software allows users to determine priority zones for voice amplification to focus on the speaker. www.sennheiser.com

STUDIO TECHNOLOGIES has released a macOS-compatible version of its STcontroller software application. First offered to support the Windows operating system, Mac users can now directly benefit from STcontroller’s support of many Studio Technologies’ Dantecompatible products. STcontroller allows personal computer users to access a product’s operating configuration, displaying existing settings and allowing rapid changes. Both the macOS and Windows versions of STcontroller are available for download, free of charge, from the manufacturer’s website. The new version is a “native” Mac application and is compatible with macOS X Sierra 10.12 and later. On starting STcontroller, the application scans an associated local area network and automatically identifies compatible Studio Technologies’ Dante devices. Users can then confirm and revise selected parameters. Some devices will have just two or three configurable choices, while others can have dozens. In all cases, users are presented with a concise GUI interface. STcontroller has been designed for time-sensitive on-air sports

and entertainment applications where “on the fly” changes are sometimes required. It allows complete device configurations to be created, saved and loaded, and enables technical personnel to implement their desired configurations for later deployment and duplication. In addition, Studio Technologies recently added real-time audio level display for some products in both its Windows and macOS versions. www.studio-tech.com

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Universal appeal

Roland adds to Legendary series

UNIVERSAL AUDIO’S Apollo Heritage Editions provide a software suite of five or 10 UAD plugin titles – including the full Collections from Teletronix, Fairchild, Pultec, Helios and UA – packaged with Apollo hardware. These core UAD plug‑ins include vintage compressors, EQs, mic preamps, tape processing and reverb to give users a library of classic analogue, straight out of the box. The suite includes the Helios Type 69 Preamp and EQ Collection; V76 Preamplifier; Oxide Tape Recorder; Teletronix LA-3A Audio Leveler; Fairchild Tube Limiter Collection; Teletronix LA-2A Classic Leveler Collection; Pultec Passive EQ Collection; 1176 Classic Limiter Collection; Pure Plate Reverb; and UA 610 Tube Preamp and EQ Collection. www.uaudio.com

JU-06A for one-to-one, hands-on control of the JUNO-60 plugin. Roland has also announced a free update to its Zenbeats music creation app. Zenbeats 2.1 includes plug-and-play functionality with the recently released Verselab MV-1 Song Production Studio hardware and Audio Editor improvements, including Reverse and Fade functions. With Zenbeats, users can connect Verselab to a computer, tablet or smartphone, while

The software captures the original’s character and enhances it with modern additions. Users have the ability to switch to the HPF circuit of the next-generation JUNO-106 and its characteristic bass bump. The oscillator range has also been extended, and there’s a second envelope for extra flexibility. Polyphony has been expanded to eight notes, with the option to limit it to the original’s six (or less) for an old-school vibe. The software version has two push-button chorus modes, plus a third “secret” mode accessed by pressing both buttons at once. An additional chorus option provides the sound of the vintage BOSS CE-1 pedal, along with a selection of reverb, delay, flanger and overdrive effects. It is compatible with VST3, AU and AAX and also supports Roland’s PLUG-OUT format for computer-free operation with the SYSTEM-8 hardware synth. For DAW-focused workflows, it’s possible to use the SYSTEM-8 or a Roland Boutique JU-06/

new audio output routing options reportedly enable fluid integration with outboard gear, such as mixers and effects.

Helios Type 69

Waves heads to the ocean WAVES IS now shipping its Nx Ocean Way Nashville plugin which brings the acoustic environment and monitoring system of the Ocean Way Nashville studio control rooms to any pair of studio headphones. Producers and engineers are reportedly able to create better mixes using their

AVAILABLE THROUGH Roland Cloud, the JUNO-60 software synthesiser is the latest addition to the manufacturer’s Legendary series of software-based instruments. The original Roland JUNO-60 hardware synth is still respected for its vintage vibe and unmistakable character. With the JUNO-60 software synthesiser, the authentic experience of the keyboard is now available as a modern software instrument for Mac and Windows DAWs.

Formant controls, users can manipulate vocals in real time for the most popular sounds in hip-hop, pop, R&B and electronic genres. In addition to the main Pitch and Formant controls, the plugin also has a Flatten feature to lock into a single pitch and sound robotic. Users can also access

www.roland.com

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Vocal Blender four extra modulators, including LFO and sequencing. The modulators are said to bring more musicality and movement to sound and help users differentiate their style. www.waves.com

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Nx Ocean Way Nashville favourite reference headphones. Mixes monitored on headphones through the plugin will translate to multiple audio systems and platforms, reportedly without the issues that often plague mixes created on headphones. According to the manufacturer, the plugin delivers faithful representations of the control room’s finely tuned acoustics, as experienced through the Ocean Way Audio HR1 and HR5 farfield and near-field monitors. Users are said to be able to better judge mix depth, panning, reverb placement and amount, and low-end response. Waves has also announced the availability of its Vocal Blender plugin. With zero latency and two simple Pitch and

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Chauvet unleashes a new force

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Cameo shines bright outdoors THE FLAT Pro G2 series has been designed to expand Cameo’s range of IP65-certified LED outdoor PAR spotlights. The units can be used to uplight a building façade, as a noiseless light source in a HOW or theatre, or an effect light for live shows. Benefits include improved convection cooling, a selectable PWM (650Hz – 25kHz) for flicker-free camera images and a revised housing design with integrated carrying handle. The new series incorporates the Flat Pro 7 G2 (seven 10W RGBWA, 2,400 lumens), Flat Pro 12 G2 (12 10W RGBWA, 4,300 lumens) and Flat Pro 18 G2 (18 10W RGBWA, 6,600 lumens). The lights cover the entire RGBWA colour spectrum and are said to enable even more flexible colour blends for warm, rich saturated and pastel colours. According to the manufacturer, the adjustable PWM frequency means that lighting technicians no longer have to worry about flickering LEDs during dimming. In addition, the integrated

LED calibration chip reportedly ensures that saturated and pastel colours from the RGBWA colour spectrum are implemented in combination with several Flat Pro G2s without deviations. The units also incorporate the manufacturer’s patented EZChase feature (DMX delay), which can be used to create running lights without external control. In terms of design, the handle has been integrated into the compact metal housing, and an OLED display with touch-sensitive buttons has been added for “quick and easy operation” on the device. Features also include revised convection cooling and professional connection options with Neutrik True-compatible inputs and outputs, as well as three-pin IP65 DMX sockets. The units can be optionally retrofitted with a fold-out 16mm TV spigot based on patented Cameo SPIN16 technology. www.cameolight.com

GLP adds streaming solution BROUGHT ABOUT as the result of the coronavirus pandemic and social lockdowns, GLP has designed Streamer, a small and versatile light source for hosts and interviewees that plugs directly into a standard USB-C socket on any computer. The light is UL-listed and includes a flickerfree, high-intensity output with a colour temperature range of 1,900–5,600K provided by three different colour sets of LEDs. A range of in-built colour temperature presets can be accessed directly from the on-board buttons. These presets can also be modified

by the user within the desktop app, available on both Mac and PC. Streamer has an aluminium outer shell and is easy to transport in its compact case and moulded foam interior. The control app provides full management over the output

software the release of Tessera V3.1 software. A host of features including HFR+ and Frame Remapping deliver key benefits for designers operating in virtual production and cinematography in addition to sports broadcast, simulation and virtual reality. Tessera’s High Frame Rate (HFR) function currently supplies sufficient power to display video content on an LED screen at up to 144fps. Designed to provide smoother visuals in esports and simulator applications using HFR content, HFR+ now extends this to 250fps in the latest update. HFR+ also makes it possible to shoot slow motion visual effects with overcranked cameras against LED screens and still retain synchronisation between screen and camera. The UK manufacturer testifies that the combination of 250fps and ultra-low-latency mode can deliver an end-to-end system latency of just 4ms.

Frame Rate Multiplication is another pre-existing feature within the Tessera software that allows each input frame to be output multiple times when creating a higher output frame rate on the LED screen. A new Frame Remapping feature is included with the V3.1 update for interleaving different areas of the video raster or solid colours in the output. At its most simple, this allows the output frame rate to be doubled so that a black frame can be inserted between every frame of actual content, which also decreases motion blur. Any 24-bit RGB colour may be specified for each output frame, including black (dark frame insertion), white (supplemental lighting) or solid colours (green for visual effects). www.bromptontech.com

ADDRESSING THE demand for compact but powerful fixtures, Chauvet has released its Maverick Force 2 Profile and Force 1 Spot. Weighing under 27.2kg, the Maverick Force 2 Profile is powered by a 580W LED engine that produces a 21,000-lumen output. Lighter than its companion, the Force 1 Spot weighs 22.7kg and features a 470W LED engine capable of producing 20,000 lumens of brightness. Both fixtures produce an array of hues from brilliant reds to soft pastels with CMY+CTO colour mixing and an added colour wheel with CTB and CRI filters for design flexibility. Chauvet believes that lightweight fixtures make load-in times faster and more efficient. They also translate directly into faster movement and speedier effects for designers and programmers. Maverick Force 2 Profile features a quick four-blade framing shutter system with 120° rotation for precise control, a 7–55° zoom to cover a wide range of areas and 16-bit dimming for smoother fades. Added versatility is provided by its five-facet prism with frost, motorised iris, two rotating gobo wheels and animation wheel. Maverick Force 1 Spot’s effects wheelhouse has one rotating and static gobo wheel instead. Both fixtures feature Pulse Width Modulation and several TV fan modes. A variety of advanced control options are offered with

level and colour, allowing the user to create “a perfect balance”. But it’s Streamer’s full remote-control capability that GLP believes provides the real bonus, according to product manager, William Irwin. “If Streamer needs

Maverick Force 2 Profile DMX, WDMX, sACN, Art-Net, preset synch and RDM capability for remote accessing. www.chauvetprofessional.com

to be operated from a remote location, full control can be achieved with instantaneous response. Thanks to the browser-based app, Streamer can be controlled from computers, smartphones and tablets, giving a lighting designer full control over the device.” Streamer has been designed for any video conferencing needs, along with vloggers, remote broadcast and also for still photography. The Streamer Deluxe Control Kit comes complete with mounting accessories, including an extendable tripod, a 12-inch gooseneck extension for hard-to-reach places, a suction cup and a USB-C to USB-C cable. www.glp.de

PR Lighting adds to Aqua family THE AQUA 380 Beam is a 380W moving beam 300S Flex lamp. It comes with a CMY linear that features a Philips Platinum 300S Flex colour mixing system with macros. The colour lamp, 7,800K, an advanced optical system, wheel provides 12 dichroic colour filters plus an IP66 rating and a tight 2° beam for outdoor CTO and the same rainbow effect as the Aqua searchlight and aerial effects. It 380 Beam. The fixed gobo wheel comes with comes with one colour wheel, 11 gobos and an animation effect, while 12 dichroic colour filters plus the rotating gobo wheel incorporates CTO and a rainbow effect 12 interchangeable gobos. The unit with bidirectional and variable also provides three prisms, speeds. The fixed gobo wheel frost and bidirectional rotation incorporates 16 gobos and with variable speeds, and the rotating gobo wheel is made comes with optional threeup of 12 interchangeable gobos. facet, 16-facet and gradient Other features include three prisms. prisms, frost, a motorised linear Both units include focus and 540° pan and 240° adjustable pan and tilt tilt head movement with auto speed, an LCD display position correction. screen, fixture and lamp The Aqua 380 BWS is a usage time display and a waterproof IP66 moving head DMX512 wireless receiver that integrates three features and transmitter. (beam, wash and spot) in a Aqua 380 Beam www.pr-lighting.com single unit and a Philips Platinum

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ADJ creates a Link buttons – together with a two-digit backlit LCD display – help users keep track of a large quantity of scenes. Dedicated buttons provide quick access to each of the app’s main screens and an additional set of buttons provide shortcut control of key app functions. The lighting manufacturer has also added a chrome version of its Element HEXIP outdoor-rated wireless up-lighting fixture. The model has been created for applications where, instead of blending into the background, lighting fixtures are required to make a bold statement. The Element HEXIP Chrome is powered by four 10W HEX (RGBWA+UV) LEDs, which generate a consistent colour wash with a 20° beam angle. The 6-in-1 LEDs allow for the creation of a large palette of colours ranging from vivid saturates to subtle pastels. For DMX control, the unit features a built-in WiFLY EXR receiver which allows wireless control from a distance of up to 760m. The fixture also features an internal rechargeable lithium ion battery which, according to the manufacturer, can be fully charged in just 4.5 hours and is capable of running continuously for up to 16 hours between charges. An IEC power inlet for charging, as well as an on/off switch, are positioned below the menu display and a USB port is included for future firmware updates.

DESIGNED TO fill the void between small, single universe DMX controllers and largeformat lighting consoles, the Link is a hardware/software system that combines the processing power, wireless connectivity and multitouch screen of an iPad with lighting-specific tactile controls and a fouruniverse DMX interface. It has been created to simplify control for lighting designers and is powered by the free Airstream Link iOS app for iPad. The platform includes an extensive fixture library and incorporates tools to allow the easy creation of complex movements and colour chase effects. It allows the iPad’s memory to be used for storing custom Scenes and Shows that can be quickly reloaded when required. The software also makes use of the iPad’s precise touchscreen interface to facilitate actions, such as colour mixing and drawing custom movement shapes. The Link hardware offers a selection of ergonomic controls designed to give lighting designers the hands-on experience of a traditional lighting console. Four large rotary encoder wheels, with push-in selection, provide control over functions such as movement, zoom and focus. Alongside these are eight 100mm channel/submaster faders together with an additional master fader with dedicated blackout button. Each fader is also paired with a dedicated rotary control, with push-in selection, as well as two-page playback buttons. A matrix of 32 buttons provides access to specific scenes, fixtures or effects, while page scroll

Element HEXIP Chrome

THE T-10 Glass is described by Symetrix as its “largest, brightest and most powerful touchscreen yet”. The 10.1-inch 1920x1200 display provides high-resolution images at over 224ppi. The 850 nits maximum brightness reportedly ensures full image clarity and colour, even in direct sunlight. It is the first touchscreen from Symetrix offering simultaneous 10-finger control. Like the T-5 and T-5 Glass 5-inch touchscreens, the T-10 Glass is an IP-based touchscreen with data and PoE power

delivered over a single Ethernet cable. Compatible with standard two-gang wall boxes in both US and EU form factors, the T-10 Glass includes a newly designed mounting bracket which allows it to be wall mounted in any of four landscape or portrait orientations. An optional tabletop accessory allows it to be deployed on a table or desktop for added flexibility. The touchscreen incorporates the manufacturer’s SymVue GUI authoring software, allowing control screens to be

Crystal Clear views displayed by Sony CATERING FOR different application needs from corporate showrooms to productions, Sony has unveiled the modular Crystal LED C-series with high contrast and B-series with high brightness. Available in two pixel pitch sizes (P1.26mm and P1.58mm), both displays expand Sony’s Crystal LED portfolio.

or in a curved arc. Finished in a deep black coating, the Cr ystal LED C-series provides high contrast of 1,000,000:1. Offering a high brightness (1,800cd/m2), the B-series is distinguished with a matte finish and anti-reflection coating. With lower power consumption, the fan-less

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Symetrix shines bright

Both series are equipped with the X1 for Crystal LED image quality processor, which incorporates LED control and signal processing technology. The new displays provide enhanced content that is upscaled while maintaining high-resolution (Reality Creation), smooth and artefact-free pictures without motion blur (Motionflow) and showcase impressive gradation expression (22-bit Super Bit Mapping). Highlights also include a wide viewing angle and wide colour gamut, in addition to various input signals, including HDR, HFR (120fps) and 3D. Enhancing flexibility, each display is comprised of modular and bezel-free tiles that can scale to accommodate a range of sizes, layouts and resolutions. The display’s lightweight and streamlined design promote installation in various configurations, including wall mounting

displays repor tedly reduce the total cost of ownership and provide quiet operation. Forming part of the DWX wireless series, Sony’s DWR-S03D slot-in receiver has received a firmware upgrade. Using the dedicated DWASLAU1 adaptor, sound engineers can now benefit from the DWX series using the UniSlot or SuperSlot interface. This new compatibility will reportedly offer a wideband digital audio solution for location sound recording for movies, dramas and documentaries. The free v1.10 firmware upgrade, which includes direct frequency input function and digital or analogue audio output settings when the DWA-SLAU1 adaptor is attached, means that existing owners of the DWX series can expand the use of their equipment for new applications. www.pro.sony

created, tested and simulated offline before being deployed to the T-10 Glass. As part of Symetrix’s free Composer software, SymVue can be used to manipulate control objects, text and images in a “simple, convenient workflow”. Multiple pages with custom controls and backgrounds can be created and exported to a single T-10 Glass or batch exported to multiple touchscreens simultaneously. www.symetrix.co

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Bose and Barco click and collaborate offer ease of setup. The management of devices can be performed remotely with the Bose Work Management app, which displays real-time status and allows for easy single-unit or system-wide changes. Adjustments of parameters, including volume, mute, PTZ, presets and Bluetooth pairing, can be controlled from the Bose Work app via a smartphone or the included IR remote. In addition, conversations or music can be streamed from a smartphone to the VB1 via Bluetooth connectivity. Bose Professional is partnering with Barco to offer a complete AV meeting

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solution by combining any Barco ClickShare Conference device to the VB1. For rooms with different configurations requiring an additional mic pickup, Barco ClickShare Conference can also be partnered with the Bose ES1 EdgeMax in-ceiling and Bose DS4 DesignMax loudspeaker solutions. Fully certified for Barco ClickShare Conferencing, each solution is combined with the Sennheiser TeamConnect Ceiling 2 microphone, a Bose ControlSpace EX-440C processor and a PowerSpace P2600A amplifier. pro.bose.com

Bose is combining any Barco ClickShare Conference device to the VB1 FOLLOWING ITS launch at ISE 2020, Bose Professional is now shipping the all-in-one USB conferencing Videobar VB1. Proprietary transducers reproduce audio from multimedia presentations in addition to playing Bluetooth, while six beam-steering microphones focus on voices in the room and reject noise. A 4K HD camera with auto-framing delivers video that allows remote participants to visualise presenters, whiteboards and other in-room objects. With USB connectivity simplifying setup, mounting options include a table

stand or a wall-mount kit, both of which include tilt to ensure a central video image. The Bose Videobar VB1 connects to existing network infrastructures and integrates with third-party cloud services, including Microsoft Teams, Google Meet and Zoom. Remote management and configuration capabilities make it simple to deploy and manage remotely as a single unit or install up to 1,000 in conference rooms. Available as an app or via a web browser, the Bose Work Configuration software is included to

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AJA releases two 12G-SDI solutions “AS DEMAND for high raster 4K/UltraHD content increases, convenient 12G-SDI solutions are critical to simplifying cabling and transport of high bandwidth content,” said Nick Rashby, president of AJA Video Systems. As a result, the manufacturer has added two 12G-SDI openGear products to its lineup: the OG-12GM and OG-FiDO-TR-12G. Both are designed for use in high-density openGear 2U frames and compatible with Ross DashBoard software for flexible device control and monitoring. The OG-12GM is an openGear-compatible SDI transport converter that supports single-link 12G-SDI to/from quad-link 3G-SDI, two Sample Interleave (2SI) to/from Square Division (Quadrant) pixel mapping and selectable Distribution Amplifier (1x4). It provides detailed timing analysis for validating alignment of quadlink SDI inputs via a timing analyser that helps to identify possible timing issues for quad-

link signals. The converter also features openGear’s high-density architecture and DashBoard support on Windows, macOS or Linux for monitoring and control over a local network or remotely. The OG-FiDO-TR-12G is said to offer flexibility and cost-efficiency for 12G-SDI to fibre conversion and fibre to 12G-SDI conversion with single-link LC connectivity, enabling long cable runs up to 10km for single mode. It is compatible with all certified

OG-12GM openGear products and supports Ross DashBoard software for remote control and monitoring over a PC or local network to help simplify production workflows.

OG-FiDO-TR-12G

In other news, AJA has introduced Ki Pro Go v3.0 firmware, providing expanded recording options for its multichannel H.264 recorder and player with new network-based recording and support for SMB protocols via GigE network connectivity. V3.0 enables any channel to be recorded directly to network attached storage (NAS) via Ki Pro Go’s integrated GigE port, providing a central storage location for primary or backup recording channels independent of local USB storage. For live event workflows, NAS can be used as secure backup or archival storage, while local USB drives can be handed off to customers following shoots. Multiple Ki Pro Go devices can connect to the same centralised NAS storage to increase system flexibility. www.aja.com

NewTek adds a bright Spark WITH THE creation of the Spark Plus IO 12G-SDI converter, NewTek aims to enhance resolution, frame rates and colour fidelity in media workflows. By converting 12G-SDI UHD video into an IP-based media production workflow, the Spark Plus IO 12G-SDI encodes and decodes 12G-SDI sources to and from IP-friendly NDI at up to 2160p UltraHD. The IO converter connects to 12G-SDI cameras or devices, converts the video signal to NDI and shares it with any compatible system, device or application anywhere on the network, including UHD screens, monitors, projectors

or videowalls. It can also turn any legacy 12G-SDI-enabled output device such as a screen or monitor into an NDI signal on the network by using the decode functionality. A web-based interface provides remote configuration and monitoring in addition to support via NDI with an option to mount onto cameras. The manufacturer has also announced the release of ProTek, a tiered support programme that allows customers to choose between four levels of coverage, including Basic, Standard, High and Ultra. Each tier incorporates support

ClearOne upgrades learning spaces DESIGNED TO enhance the ease and visual quality of online collaboration beyond the capabilities of integrated laptop and PC cameras, ClearOne has created two new cameras. Attached to a PC or laptop with a simple mounting bracket and a 1.5m USB-A cable, Unite 10 is capable of capturing five megapixel images with a field of view up to 87°. Unite 50 4K AF features Auto-Framing technology that automatically frames meeting participants to maximise screen use through intelligent image algorithms and electronic PTZ automation. Features include 4K video quality at 30Hz, auto-focus capability, 4x digital zoom, eight megapixels of total resolution and a 110° field of view. To further simplify use and enable real-time PTZ control, the camera can be operated by an IR remote when capturing multiperson meeting environments. A standard damping mount is adopted for installation and a USB 3.0 cable provides both power and video. Both the Unite 10 and Unite 50 cameras support up to 1080p video quality and incorporate autofocus when adopted for web-based conferencing applications, including ClearOne’s Collaborate Space, WebEx, Google Meet, Zoom, GoToMeeting and Microsoft Teams.

Spark Plus IO 12G-SDI

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elements under Warranty, Software Maintenance, Technical Support and Extended Services. www.newtek.com

Barco expands laser portfolio with G100 DEVELOPED FOR more budget-friendly applications, Barco has expanded its laser projection portfolio with the G100 projector series. Intended for both indoor and outdoor use, the three singlechip projectors provide native WUXGA resolution in brightness options of 16,000, 19,000 and 22,000 lumens. The G100 supports HDMI 2.0 to enable deep colour palettes and operates at

exceptionally low noise levels. With throw ratios ranging from 0.38–10.8 together with a large shift capability, a newly created GC-lens range has been made available for the G100 models. On-board cooling ensures that the G100 can withstand a maximum ambient operating temperature of 50°C. www.barco.com

Unite 10 The Salt Lake City-based manufacturer has also made the VESA mounting option available for its beamforming microphone array ceiling tile. VESA is designed to allow pole-mount or projector-mount options for the BMA CT and the Versa BMA CTH solutions. Mounting options can be extended to non-drop, hard and angled ceilings with easy positioning at a convenient height from the floor. The VESA bracket is attached to pre-existing holes on the back of the beamforming array ceiling tile microphones before connection to a VESA-compliant, hardceiling mount or pole mount. www.clearone.com

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PRODUCTS

Visionary adds Bluetooth connection VISIONARY HAS added two PacketAV Duet Wallplate Encoders, one featuring Bluetooth (DuetE-WP-BT) and the other featuring simplified HDMI-only connectivity (DuetEWP-H). The DuetE-WP-BT combines 4K UHD video and Dante/AES67 audio embedding and de-embedding over a single gigabit Ethernet port, with built-in Bluetooth wireless audio connectivity. With Bluetooth 5.0 for extended range, faster data throughput and reliable connections, the DuetE-WP-BT supports bidirectional smartphone connectivity via Bluetooth for web conference soft-codec AV integration and eliminates the need for separate bridging hardware. The PacketAV Duet Wallplate Encoders fit into a two-gang, US or UK-style back box without additional electrical box modification. They mount into standard Decora-style wall plates for use in a wall, tabletop, lectern or floor box. The 45° Ethernet connector is said to enable simplified access from any side of the

electrical box while providing bend radius relief for category cables. The encoders feature a

DuetE-WP-BT and DuetE-WP-H single Ethernet port with internal VLAN tagging capability to separate audio and video network traffic as needed.

status information on primary and redundant power supplies when installed in a yellobrik rack frame (model: RFR 1000-1). www.lynx-technik.com

Ultra Encode family extends universal appeal CREATED FOR applications ranging from livestreaming and remote contribution to IP-based production and AV-over-IP, Magewell has introduced the Ultra Encode family of universal live media encoders. The flexible encoding hardware solution supports multiple encoding formats, including H.264, H.265 and NDI | HX, together with a wide array of delivery protocols.

Providing a balance between broader viewing device compatibility and higherquality/bitrate efficiency, Ultra Encode features H.264 and H.265 (HEVC) video compression for livestreaming deliver y. The new encoder also suppor ts a wide range of streaming protocols, including RTMP, RTMPS, RTSP, RTP, HLS and SRT (Secure Reliable Transpor t). Configurable

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DESIGNED TO ease the process of controlling, configuring and updating the yellobrik line of throw-down bricks, LYNX Technik has introduced the Rack Controller to its catalogue of modular signal processing interfaces. The RCT 1012 is a “first-of-itskind” module allowing a facility to combine the control tasks for up to 12 yellobriks housed in a yellobrik rack. Bypassing the need to update, configure and set parameters of individual yellobrik modules, the RCT 1012 provides a bulk update method by using a single slot as part of a yellobrik rack system. Once the yellobrik rack controller is installed in a yellobrik rack, it automatically detects the USB-connected yellobrik modules and displays them in the APPolo software. The yellobriks can be visualised and controlled over the IP network via the rack controller’s Ethernet port connection. The RCT 1012 also detects

www.vsicam.com

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LYNX Technik creates rack controller for yellobrik Series

Ross merges Acuity and Ultrix BUILDING ON its Acuity switcher and Ultrix routing and AV processing platform, Ross has also announced the release of its hyper-converged production platform called Ultrix Acuity. It takes routing, audio mixing, multiviewers, trays of frame syncs and audio embedders/de-embedders – all solutions that have traditionally filled multiple equipment racks – and compresses them all down to a single 5U chassis. Ultrix Acuity has been designed for environments where size really matters, such as OB vans and mobile units. Users can add 2U of rack-mounted redundant power and the result is a complete 7U system that can replace packages requiring multiple racks, complex cabling and control system integrations. As with the current Ultrix solution, Ultrix Acuity is based on the manufacturer’s Software Defined Production philosophy. The Software Defined Production Engine (SDPE) provides base hardware that can grow

via convenient and relatively inexpensive software licences. Ultrix Acuity’s SDPE backbone reportedly reduces the uncertainty around meeting future creative or technical requirements. Users can also transition from HD to UHD with a software licence and mix SDI and IP sources in the same frame

Ultrix Acuity

presets enable streaming to YouTube Live, Facebook Live, Twitch or custom targets with select protocols allowing simultaneous streaming to multiple destinations using independent encoding parameters for each stream. Combinations such as H.265 compression and the SRT protocol provide a secure deliver y of highquality, bandwidth-efficient livestreams. For IP production workflows and AVover-IP signal distribution architectures, Ultra Encode suppor ts second-generation NDI | HX, the lower-bitrate mode in NewTek’s NDI IP media transpor t technology. The bandwidth-friendliness of NDI | HX enables it to be transmitted wirelessly over Ultra Encode’s integrated Wi-Fi suppor t, maximising flexibility in onsite production and monitoring workflows. Ultra Encode units can be combined with Magewell’s multi-format

Pro Conver t decoders for end-to-end, live media transpor t in either NDI | HX or streaming formats. The Ultra Encode HDMI and Ultra Encode SDI models offer a choice of HDMI 1.4a or 3G-SDI input and loop-through inter faces. Both models can encode and stream content up to 1080p60 at bitrates up to 16Mbps, although the Ultra Encode HDMI also accepts 4K HDMI inputs, down-conver ting them automatically to HD. Embedded audio is complemented by analogue, linelevel audio input and output connections. In addition to Wi-Fi, the encoder offers an RJ45 Gigabit Ethernet por t for wired networking. The encoder can be configured and controlled via a browser-based web inter face or programmatically via HTTPbased APIs.

transparently. Ultrix Acuity can become one node of a larger distributed routing environment, reducing the incremental cost of adding I/O and further production switchers.

Replacing the current Tria Express launched in 2016, Ross Video has also unveiled the Tria Express Duet production server. Housed in a similar 2U chassis and built on the same video hardware as its predecessor, Tria Express Duet expands the number of possible video I/O configurations up to 15 channels. Two software options are available with the hardware: the TRIA-XD-2SW enables two symmetrical record/playout channels and the TRIA-XD-4-SW features these same two symmetrical record/playout channels with two additional playout-only channels. Tria Express Duet also features a built-in multiviewer which can be undocked and moved onto an extended desktop computer display. A two-channel Tria Express Duet can be upgraded in the future to four channels (two record/playout with two playout only) via a software licence.

www.magewell.com

www.rossvideo.com

May–June 2021 PRO AVL MEA 71

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PRODUCTS

Magmatic adds cryogenic effects Opus works extended

GV

ROCKET IS a line of CO2 cryogenic simulation effects from Elation’s sister brand Magmatic that produces dense white clouds of fog which engulf an area in a few seconds and also dissipate instantly, with each effect arrayed with high-output RGBA LEDs. Compared with traditional liquid CO2 or liquid nitrogen cryogenic effects, the Rocket series does not require high-pressure liquid CO2 or liquid nitrogen cylinders, making for a “safer, less expensive and faster setup that requires no local authority approvals”. Three Rocket series effects are available: Javelin, Sidewinder and Tomahawk. Javelin features 34 2W RGBA LEDs and can rotate 90° for horizontal or vertical bursts of fog. Sidewinder features 22 2W RGBA LEDs and can rotate 180° for multi-position bursts of fog. The maximum throw distance for both units is 6m with a 1,416m3 per minute output. The maximum continuous output is 10s on full and fluid capacity is 2.5l.

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Tomahawk provides 2,405m3 per minute output for wide coverage applications. It features 34 8W RGBA LEDs and can rotate 180° for bursts of fog in multiple positions. The maximum throw distance is 7.6m with a maximum continuous output of 12s on full. Fluid capacity is 5.6l. All three units include thermally protected heat exchangers and feature Advanced HPA (High Pressure Air) pump technology to reduce the risk of heater clogging and automatic selfcleaning and energy-saving auto shut-off (when no fluid is detected). On-board LCD touchscreen control panels come with manual and timer control options, intuitive DMX-512 and RDM control, and wired and wireless remote-control options. Javelin, Sidewinder and Tomahawk use Magmatic’s Atmosity effects fluid, a non-toxic and odourless fluid that dissipates fast and leaves no condensation on walls, floors or equipment. www.elationlighting.com

Telestream looks to the cloud TELESTREAM HAS announced a strategic collaboration with Skyline Communications which will integrate Telestream’s cloudbased video monitoring solutions with Skyline’s DataMiner network management, orchestration and operations suppor t solution. With this initiative, the two companies have integrated the new Telestream Cloud Stream Monitor ser vice to provide flexibility for validating and troubleshooting live as well as on-demand video streaming ser vices across the globe. The ser vice can deploy transpor t stream monitoring, leveraging Telestream IQ QoS and QoE solutions. This allows video providers to deploy monitoring for SRT or Zixi feeds, either as contribution streams to the cloud or across the global cloud backbones for global transit

of transpor t streams as a satellite replacement or augmentation strategy. The transpor t stream monitoring has the

AT-OPUS-RX41 NEW TO the Opus Series of 4K HDR integration products, Atlona has added a 4x1 HDMI HDBaseT switcher and receiver combination in the form of the AT-OPUS-RX41. Comprising three HDMI inputs for local devices and one HDBaseT input to receive video, the combination also accepts embedded audio, Ethernet pass-through, power and bidirectional control signals for distances up to 100m. Capable of displaying 4K/UHD HDR content from a centralised matrix switcher or one of the connected local sources, the AT-OPUS-RX41 supports 4K/UHD @ 60Hz with 4:4:4 chroma sampling and high dynamic range formats, such as HDR10, HLG and Dolby Vision. Extension of CEC as well as bidirectional IR and RS-232 signals over HDBaseT allows a control system connected to the OPUS-RX41 to select inputs on the matrix. Alternatively, it can manage its sources for the matrix to control the local room display. The US designer has also unveiled a Velocity System 10-inch touchpanel for integrations into lobbies, corridors or meeting space exteriors where a visual means of displaying room availability is required. The AT-VTP-1000VL features PoE connectivity and a 1280x800 native resolution screen with a capacitive glass surface for supporting multitouch use. The larger 10-inch size provides additional space for more

same global reach as the OTT monitoring ser vice across multiple public cloud providers.

The path is laid for pristine video HERALDED AS an AVoIP technology for allowing different video resolutions to be shared across different network bandwidths, Datapath has launched Aligo. Working seamlessly with Datapath’s Aetria solution, Aligo connects and shares video sources in any resolution without affecting the original quality. Aetria works in harmony with Datapath’s display processors in addition to third-party products, bringing control

complex user control of videowalls, high-density matrix switchers or audio DSPs. For adoption in either landscape or portrait orientation, bezel LED lighting surrounds the panel edge to create a visual representation of room status in scheduling applications. Scheduling and AV

AT-VTP-1000VL control GUIs can be automatically uploaded from the Velocity System hardware or software server gateway during system configuration. A dual-purpose wall or glass mount kit is included with the standard VESA 75 pattern providing compatibly with other options. An optional AT-VTP-VTM tabletop mounting kit is available for placement on a meeting table or lectern. www.atlona.com

Telestream has also announced that its Cloud Stream Monitor and Wirecast streaming solutions have achieved “SRT Plugged” status by successfully completing interoperability testing at the SRT InterOp Plugfest. The event is held annually for developers to test interoperability and compatibility between different technologies and vendors using the SRT protocol. Stream Monitor now enables users to monitor live video quality from streams transported via SRT. Tests confirmed interoperability with over 20 different SRT-enabled devices from a variety of market-leading encoding and content delivery systems. The latest Wirecast release was used as a live video contribution source via the SRT protocol. www.telestream.net

room design, management and monitoring solutions to a single, secure interface. Aligo simultaneously delivers 4K content across a 10G network and compressed streams on 1G infrastructures with sub-millisecond latency. The series currently includes the Aligo QTX100 quad 4K transmitter and the Aligo RX100 single 4K receiver with quad HD outputs.

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www.datapath.co.uk

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GV’s K-Frame in the Cloud CONTINUING TO expand its cloud-based live production portfolio, Ross Video has introduced a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) version of its K-Frame switcher engine that runs virtually on the Grass Valley Agile Media Processing Platform (AMPP). K-Frame on AMPP expands the recently introduced GV Media Universe ecosystem by providing operators with the resources needed for professional media production in the cloud. With three M/Es and four keyers with 2D DPM per M/E, the solution uses the same UI and control surfaces as any other K-Frame solution. Stills and animations with fill/key including transparency also provide a production look that is reportedly easy to create, store and recall at the touch of a button from the hundreds of E-MEMs and Macros available. Kayenne, Karrera, Korona and KSP control surfaces maintain their performance regardless of whether they are tied to a physical frame or to GV K-Frame on AMPP. AMPP-connected solutions can also scale to as many instances as required without upfront buildout, allowing for flexible I/O with access to any source on the AMPP fabric. “For those operating our switcher technology, such as technical directors, much of the switching is done by muscle memory,” noted GV’s Marco Lopez, general manager for live production. “They know the panel so well that it’s like playing an instrument; their

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conscious attention can focus on the incoming video sources and cues to build a show, and the physical actions simply flow. With GV K-Frame on AMPP, users can immediately transfer that intuitive knowledge – along with their existing show files – to cloud-based video production.”

AMS Express The GV AMPP platform is cloud-native and cloud-agnostic, while supporting the secure processing of video/audio in the public cloud on any of the major platforms, in a private, on-premises data centre or in hybrid topologies. Users also benefit from responsive and frame-accurate, cloud-hosted performance – even when connected via typical residential internet – as a result of the manufacturer’s patented intelligent timing technology system. The broadcast solutions manufacturer has also introduced a scalable network attached storage (NAS) solution for content producers named AMS Express (Advanced Media Storage) that opens up shared storage capabilities for small- and medium-sized media operations. AMS Express works with GV’s existing editing and playout solutions and combines compute, network and secure storage capability in a compact 2U footprint. Offering up to 384TB of raw capacity (256TB usable), it is built on the StorNext operating system and comes pre-installed with Grass Valley software for tracking media assets. www.grassvalley.com

Christie turbos Pandoras Box with single V8

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FEATURING A host of new features, a simplified workflow and streamlined licensing, Christie has made Pandoras Box V8 software licence available for real-time video processing and show control. A single licence incorporates the full Pandoras Box software family feature suite in the delivery of media processing per formance in fixed installations, live events and other

entertainment environments. Designed to be simpler and more robust, the latest software supports NDI network streams, offers a comprehensive and deep implementation of Notch and accessibility to native Dante audio without requiring configuration. It can be paired with an existing custom setup or any Christie hardware, such as the Pandoras Box Server R5. The Pandoras Box software product licence incorporates Server, Player, Compact Player, Software Player, Manager and Educational licences. Features formerly only available with hardware and software combinations (Server) are now available to all software users operating with any custom hardware system. Ideal for content-heavy shows, the ingestion functionality promotes timesaving batch handling of multiple folders of image sequences. Benefits offered by the previous versions – including highframe-rate 3D stereoscopic video playback and processing, multi-user control, 64bit processing and 10-bit colour depth playback – are available in V8. www.christiedigital.com

Wireless presenting from WolfVision PRESENTATION AND collaboration solutions manufacturer WolfVision has added a wireless presentation, web conferencing and collaboration system to its line of solutions. The new Cynap Core Pro provides wireless screen mirroring capability combined with built-in web conferencing, annotation and a range of other popular collaboration tools. BYOD screen mirroring functionality allows for wireless screen sharing of all iOS, Android, Windows, macOS and Chrome OS devices onto a central shared display. Connection is said to be “quick and easy”, with support for AirPlay, Chromecast, Miracast and WolfVision’s own vSolution Cast mirroring protocols, which means that no additional software, apps or dongles are needed when sharing content onscreen. A suite of annotation tools enables markup of any open window, with the option to save the generated content. Other key features include support for Zoom, Microsoft Teams and WebRTC-based web meetings, plus a built-in media player allowing files to be displayed onscreen from network drives, cloud services, USB sticks, mobile devices or via the integrated Microsoft Office 365 interface.

For classroom, meeting room or cour troom installations requiring additional connectivity options, Cynap Core Pro includes an HDMI In por t, which can be used for connecting an inroom PC or camera. An optional lecture capture feature pack enables operation as a capture agent for Panopto, and other compatible video management platforms, and multiple Cynap Core Pro units can also be used as client devices as par t of WolfVision’s vSolution Matrix networked-AV multi-screen collaboration solution. Like other Cynap systems, the new model comes with 4K output resolution, up to a four-window onscreen display, and free firmware updates and remote management tools. www.wolfvision.com

LivePlus reports from home CANADIAN DEVELOPER Dejero has created the LivePlus for Windows app to simplify broadcast setups for reporters working from home. Journalists working remotely with a wired or wireless broadband connection can now transmit high-quality, live video up to 20Mbps while

simultaneously receiving two ultra-lowlatency return video and teleprompter feeds from a laptop. Dejero’s integrated Smart Blending Technology provides the option to blend Ethernet with a Wi-Fi connection. Access to a cellular network can be made with a Wi-Fi connection to a portable Wi-Fi hotspot device or a smartphone with a built-in Wi-Fi access point or personal hotspot feature. Reporters can receive up to two return video feeds simultaneously for programme video delivered via a Dejero CuePoint

return server. Delivering teleprompter and return video feeds with latency as low as 250ms, CuePoint combined with LivePlus for Windows assists on-air presenters synchronise with central production during live broadcasts. Providing confidence

monitoring and teleprompter scripts, presenters can view from a customisable user interface, while looking directly at the camera and adjusting oncamera positions to account for overlays and graphics. A bespoke display layout can be created on a second monitor or by moving or resizing the camera preview and the return video or teleprompter tiles around the screen. The app supports the use of an internal camera, an external USB webcam or the connection of an SDI or HDMI camera. www.dejero.com

May–June 2021 PRO AVL MEA 73

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BUSINESS: ANALYSIS

Decisive manoeuvres

Third-generation custodians of the family business, brothers Daniel and Andreas had lined up a year of celebrations and innovations to commemorate Sennheiser’s 75th birthday in 2020. Then a gate-crasher arrived in the form of Covid-19, signalling an end to the party. Richard Lawn finds out what happened next AS PLANS FOR 2020 WERE PUT ON HOLD INDEFINITELY, Sennheiser published its financial results for the fiscal year 2019. Declaring a turnover of €756.7 million, earnings before interest and profit for the company were slightly down on the previous year. More significantly, and with refreshing candour, the company forecast a significant decline in turnover and earnings for the 2020 fiscal year. Citing the “accelerated dynamics” in the consumer headphone market and the long-term effects of Covid-19, Sennheiser announced that it would cut around 650 jobs by the end of 2022. Having identified potential weaknesses, the company was forced to regroup. By 2019, Daniel Sennheiser was convinced that he and his brother needed new perspectives to transform the company. In addition to being a late entrant in the development of wireless headphones, consumer sales had been disappointing. “Following a rather mixed fiscal year in 2019 and major challenges this year, we are adapting our organisational structure to the changing conditions,” the product designer and strategist said at the time of the report in July 2020. “Sennheiser will align it with the new requirements in order to position the company for a successful future.” Fast forward and the joint CEOs have announced a new focus that will garner greater independence for its business units. The pro business will be accelerated once a partnership – or acquisition – has been secured to strengthen the German brand’s market position in consumer electronics. “It is important to us that all business areas emerge stronger from the realignment,” comments Daniel who, having studied product design at university, joined the family business in 2008, initially to head strategic innovation. Prior to this, he had run his own agency and had been employed by multinationals such as Procter & Gamble, learning along the way that family enterprises have much to learn from other businesses. To achieve sustainable growth, Sennheiser aims to increase visibility in the consumer business. Despite this being a highly dynamic market with strong competitive pressure, both the soundbar and wireless headphone markets in particular offer significant growth potential. “Our products are known for the best sound and for delivering a unique sound experience,” says Daniel. “These crucial aspects are at the heart of the purchasing decision for our customers in the premium headphones, enhanced hearing, audiophile and soundbars segments. These are the strengths that we want to work with a partner to build upon.” A par tnership for the consumer business will enable Sennheiser to place its focus and resources on strengthening its pro audio, business communications and Neumann business units. Having earned a doctorate in supply chain management from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich in 2004, younger brother Andreas was initially responsible for lean management and strategic supply chain design. “In all of these areas we see great potential for growth but, at the same time, they are characterised by different customer groups, customer requirements, product life cycles and market dynamics,” he explains. “To be best able to exploit the potential in each of these markets, we are concentrating our own resources on these three business areas. In the pro world, Sennheiser stands for a superior audio experience, the highest reliability and the best customer understanding.”

L–R: co-CEOs Daniel and Dr Andreas Sennheiser Here, Sennheiser plans to independently invest in its sound competence as well as in its market presence and visibility. The company has forecast that this will allow it to continue to grow at an above-average rate and to further expand its position in the global market. The business communications market in particular offers significant opportunities for growth that Sennheiser intends to capture. “By nature, we need to collaborate with other companies to create a solution for our customers,” continues Andreas. “We already benefit from many collaborations for the existing Team Connect 2 product range, including Microsoft Teams certification. In addition, our technology has to work seamlessly with Crestron and Extron control inter faces.” The growth of this professional segment cannot be underestimated and looks set to surge long into the future. “Touchless audio has been driven by the pandemic, but our customers want to walk into a meeting room and not have to fiddle around with microphones and inputs,” adds Daniel. “Further opportunities exist to increase our market share within business communications. Therefore, we have already started to create a dedicated sales force and Sennheiser will expand the portfolio by investing in product development to create real solutions such as improved connectivity for the end user.” The brothers firmly believe that the implementation of their current strategies in all four segments will yield success. “As much as we can grasp the growth opportunities, we need to stay close to all our customers right now,” explains Andreas. “For example, the live rental market was decimated last year. The investments that we make during the current situation will pay off at a later stage. The live sound industry will come back to life but, in the meantime, our other business sectors are doing really well. Covid-19 can be credited for the significant rise

in demand of recording studio upgrades from artists who could no longer per form live. On the home recording side with the Neumann brand, 2020 was a great year for us. You cannot expect all four sectors to be booming at any given time.” Andreas credits Covid-19 as a catalyst for new technological developments. “Today, we are all much more used to virtual meetings, but the technological demand has extended beyond the immediate business communications sector,” he emphasises. “Universities and academic centres have equipped their lecture halls with microphones for streaming to students at home. New hybrid formats mix live per formances onstage with broadcast streams. Academic facilities, houses of worship and live events will extend their audiences and increase their profitability in future. This will greatly benefit everyone in the professional AV industry.” Sennheiser is now searching for a strong partner that shares its strategy and vision within the consumer business. “With that, we will have everything we need to succeed,” concludes Andreas. “With greater brand visibility and additional marketing capabilities, we will be better equipped to play to our strengths, and this will further benefit our customers. We always focus on the needs of our customers and will continue to do so in the future.” The Sennheiser brothers may not have grown up on the factory floor, but their combined experience and vision betrays that of a typical family-owned setup. Sennheiser has reinvented itself and rapidly adapted to the demands of the highly dynamic market. Rather than rest on the laurels of their rightful heritage, the brothers are making bold decisions that will take their professional and consumer divisions to the next level. www.sennheiser.com

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A NEW HEIGHT IN HOME T H E AT E R A U D I O ATX100 AIM SERIES 2 DOLBY ATMOS ® ENABLED SYSTEMS

The AIM Series 2 ATX100 in-wall height speaker is designed specifically for Dolby Atmos® and other object-based sound formats. The ATX100 is the architectural in-wall solution to the traditional floor-standing or bookshelf “height speakers” and reflects sound off the ceiling to place and move audio anywhere in the room for an immersive experience.

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Since 1958

©2019 Nortek Security & Control LLC. Speakercraft® is a registered trademark of Nortek Security & Control LLC. All rights reserved

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A10

ON BRAND. ON TARGET. I M P ECC A B L E P LU G -A N D - P L AY S O U N D FO R V I P E V EN TS A10

delivers

outstanding

concert

performance

and

reliability

for

audiences

from

50 to 500. A10 can be mounted on a pole for intimate gatherings, or for larger events, can be stacked or flown in vertical and horizontal arrays. A10 provides adjustable coverage with exceptional sound quality in a 2-way 10’’ passive enclosure. A10 is lightweight, weather-resistant, and combines plug-and-play ease with global brand acceptance. Join our provider network with A10. Welcome to the Best Sound.

www.l-acoustics.com

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