Systems Contractor News - August 2021

Page 1

Welcome to the AUGUST ISSUE of

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MGP 641

Easily Scale and Present Up to Four 4K/60 Sources on a Single Display When a high-end presentation environment or live event requires a scaling multiviewer with full 4K/60 and HDCP 2.3 compliance, there’s no better choice than the Extron MGP 641. Four scalable HDMI inputs, one HDMI background input, and locally stored image files provide flexibility when presenting content. Extensive windowing options enable side-by-side, overlap, and picture-in-picture positioning of live sources and available graphics, and layouts can easily be stored and recalled from an external control system.

Features: • Full 4K/60, 4:4:4 support on all inputs and outputs • HDMI and DTP2 4K/60 outputs deliver duplicate signals to local and remote displays • Cascade multiple MGP 641 processors to present up to 16 windows on a single screen • 128 customizable presets allow quick saving and recall of window layouts • Auto-layout mode configures window layout based on which inputs have an active signal • Source and output rotation • Video and logo keying

Animated Transitions The window arrangement and background can be stored as a preset and later recalled using a hard cut or animated transition. An animated transition dynamically resizes and repositions the four windows to the location determined by the new preset, with an adjustable duration of 0 to 5 seconds.

• Audio de-embedding

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Ensuring Your Design Is Engaging and User-Friendly LEVIATHAN

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AUGUST 2021

20 The Way They See It

Joe King discusses the evolution of the PPDS brand in North America.

22 Executive Q&A

D&H’s Peter Hurley talks about driving new opportunities in pro AV.

42 Viewpoint

20

22

42

Luke Jordan wonders if company culture is the result of strategy.

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CONTENTS Leviathan

25

Designing AV for UX SCN sits down with a number of UX experts who work in several different

markets to discuss the importance of UX in AV design. By Carolyn Heinze

Features

Technology

28 Locking Down As networks grow more complex and devices more

32 CEDIA Expo Preview

sophisticated, vigilance in the fundamentals of

Ahead of the 2021 show,

network security will be more important than ever.

manufacturers gave SCN a

By Jim Beaugez

sneak peek at the resimercial products they’ll be

30 Preserving History with AV The Tennessee State Museum deployed SDVoE

demonstrating on the show floor. By Megan A. Dutta

technology to showcase the state’s rich history

34 Exploring Kiosks

through visual storytelling.

In an ever-evolving consumer landscape, kiosks are

By SCN Staff

helping to ensure efficiency, security, and even safety

People 20 The Way They See It Joe King of PPDS discusses the evolution of the

during the ongoing pandemic. By Ledetta Asfa-Wossen

Viewpoint

company’s brand in North America.

42 Culture vs. Strategy

By Katie Makal

It’s been said that culture eats strategy for

22 Executive Q&A D&H’s Peter Hurley talks about driving new opportunities in pro AV through collaboration and correlation. By Megan A. Dutta

30 34

breakfast—but is company culture actually the result of strategy? By Luke Jordan, CTS-D, PMP

Departments 18 ASSOCIATION NEWS 24 PEOPLE NEWS 36 PRODUCTS

Vol. 28 No. 8 August 2021 Systems Contractor News (ISSN 1078-4993) is published monthly by Future US, Inc., 11 West 42nd Street, 15th Floor, New York, NY 10036-8002. Periodical postage paid at New York, NY and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: send address changes to: SYSTEMS CONTRACTOR NEWS, P.O. Box 1051, Lowell, MA 01853. Subscribe online at www.MySCNews.com. Please allow 6-8 weeks for address changes to take effect. ©Copyright 2021 by Future US, Inc. PRINTED IN U.S.A.

4

SCN // August 2021 // avnetwork.com


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®

EDITORIAL avnetwork.com

AUGUST 2021 VOL. 28 NO. 8 CONTENT

VP/Content Creation Anthony Savona Content Director Megan A. Dutta, megan.dutta@futurenet.com Content Manager Katie Makal Contributors Ledetta Asfa-Woosen, Jim Beaugez, Carolyn Heinze, Luke Jordan Group Art Director Nicole Cobban Art Editor Rob Crossland Production Managers Nicole Schilling, Heather Tatrow A DV E R T I S I N G S A L E S

Vice President, AV/Consumer Electronics & Pro Audio Adam Goldstein, adam.goldstein@futurenet.com, 212-378-0465 Sales John Casey, john.casey@futurenet.com, 845-678-3839 Janis Crowley, janis.crowley@futurenet.com, 845-414-6791 Debbie Rosenthal, debbie.rosenthal@futurenet.com, 212-378-0468 Zahra Majma, zahra.majma@futurenet.com, 845-678-3752 Andi Tureson andi.tureson@futurenet.com SUBSCRIBER CUSTOMER SERVICE

The Healing Power of Sound

MEGAN A. DUTTA Content Director

I

megan.dutta@futurenet.com

this trip, I decided to be semi-technology-free and stress-free, meaning I didn’t take I thought it would be a difficult task for me. Despite my anti-rise-and-grind tweets, I do

tend to be a workaholic (shhhhh … don’t tell anyone I said that!). Instead, I found the silence and alone time comforting. On my trip, I scheduled just two things: dinner with a friend on my last night and a sound bath. For those of you unfamiliar with sound baths, it is a meditative experience where those in attendance are “bathed” in sound waves. It might sound a bit hippie, but, working

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@scnmagazine

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SCN is available for licensing. Contact the Licensing team to discuss partnership opportunities. Head of Print Licensing Rachel Shaw licensing@futurenet.com

recently took a solo vacation to California for a few days of self-care in the sun. On my laptop and didn’t check in at work.

EMAIL

To subscribe, change your address, or check on your current account status, go to avnetwork.com and click on About Us, email futureplc@computerfulfillment. com, call 888-266-5828, or write P.O. Box 1051, Lowell, MA 01853.

in the audiovisual field, I suspect most of you understand the healing power of audio.

M A N AG E M E N T

Senior Vice President, B2B Rick Stamberger Vice President, Sales & Publishing, B2B Aaron Kern Vice President, B2B Tech Group Carmel King Vice President, Sales, B2B Tech Group Adam Goldstein Head of Production US & UK Mark Constance Head of Design Rodney Dive FUTURE US, INC.

11 West 42nd Street, 15th Floor New York, NY 10036

So I headed to the Integratron in Landers, CA, on a Thursday afternoon. Built in 1954 by George Van Tassel, the structure is based on the design of Moses’ Tabernacle, the writings of Nikola Tesla, and—according to Van Tassel—telepathic directions from

TWITTER twitter.com/scnmag twitter.com/meganadutta TWEET US Has audio helped heal you in some way?

extraterrestrials. After we got a brief history of the building, my group and I headed up to the structure’s second floor. The acoustics in the building are fascinating. I could hear perfectly what the people on the other side of the Integratron directly across from me were whispering. When I whispered notes of gratitude from a square in the center of the room, the entire group could hear my words. The actual sound bath consisted of 35 minutes of 20 quartz crystal singing bowls being played live. According to the musician, the sound levels reached 100 dB, but the noise wasn’t ever overwhelming in the deeply resonant, multi-wave sound chamber. Instead, it was comforting and relaxing. As the sound waves washed over me, I felt completely at

All contents ©2021 Future US, Inc. or published under licence. All rights reserved. No part of this magazine may be used, stored, transmitted or reproduced in any way without the prior written permission of the publisher. Future Publishing Limited (company number 2008885) is registered in England and Wales. Registered office: Quay House, The Ambury, Bath BA1 1UA. All information contained in this publication is for information only and is, as far as we are aware, correct at the time of going to press. Future cannot accept any responsibility for errors or inaccuracies in such information. You are advised to contact manufacturers and retailers directly with regard to the price of products/services referred to in this publication. Apps and websites mentioned in this publication are not under our control. We are not responsible for their contents or any other changes or updates to them. This magazine is fully independent and not affiliated in any way with the companies mentioned herein. If you submit material to us, you warrant that you own the material and/or have the necessary rights/ permissions to supply the material and you automatically grant Future and its licensees a licence to publish your submission in whole or in part in any/all issues and/or editions of publications, in any format published worldwide and on associated websites, social media channels and associated products. Any material you submit is sent at your own risk and, although every care is taken, neither Future nor its employees, agents, subcontractors or licensees shall be liable for loss or damage. We assume all unsolicited material is for publication unless otherwise stated, and reserve the right to edit, amend, adapt all submissions. Please Recycle. We are committed to only using magazine paper which is derived from responsibly managed, certified forestry and chlorine-free manufacture. The paper in this magazine was sourced and produced from sustainable managed forests, conforming to strict environmental and socioeconomic standards. The manufacturing paper mill and printer hold full FSC and PEFC certification and accreditation.

peace. After the musician stopped playing, we all laid on our mats for a bit to relax to the sound of ambient music in the chamber. Leaving the sound bath, I felt completely refreshed and recharged. It was the perfect ending to my vacation, all thanks to the healing power of audio. Future plc is a public company quoted on the London Stock Exchange (symbol: FUTR)

6 SCN // August 2021 // avnetwork.com

www.futureplc.com

Chief executive Zillah Byng-Thorne Non-executive chairman Richard Huntingford Chief financial officer Rachel Addison Tel +44 (0)1225 442 244


YOUR INSIDE LOOK AT INFOCOMM 2021 Join AVIXA, InfoComm Show Daily, and Systems Contractor News for a virtual preview of InfoComm 2021. During this single-day event, attendees will get a sneak peek of InfoComm education sessions, the hottest technology on the show floor, and have the ability to network with other InfoComm attendees ahead of the show. Register FREE online today. I N F O CO M M S N E A K P E E K .CO M

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NEWS HIGHLIGHTS

Marshall Cameras Enhance Kent State’s Esports Livestreams

kent, oh—Looking to enhance the university’s live esports broadcasts by capturing athlete reactions and interactions with players and team members, Jason Forbes, broadcast engineer at Kent State University Teleproductions, turned to miniature CV503 POV cameras and full-featured CV730 PTZ cameras from Marshall Electronics. Kent State’s 12-seat V-style arena gaming space was designed and integrated in-house, with an assist from Heartland Video, which provided most of the video production gear. Deploying Marshall’s ultra-compact cameras allowed the production team to enhance its livestreams to

AV CHICAGO

Twitch without distracting the players or interfering with their gameplay.

Top 5 Stories on avnetwork.com 5. The AV Gig Economy 4. AV Chicago Teams Up with Chop Shop to Create Ultimate Streaming Studio 3. How to Build a Killer Conference Room 2. Biamp Acquires Neets 1. CCS Presentation Systems Turns 30

POPULAR POSTS Why Pronouns Are Important

The Nutsedge Effect

BY JOÉ LLOYD If you recognize your

BY HENRY CLIFFORD If your company

privilege, you recognize there are doors you

has grown beyond relying on the owner’s

The Return to a Hybrid Kind of Normal with Streaming BY MARC RISBY It’s been said that the

have never had to open and doors you have never even

cell phone to take business calls, chances are there’s a

COVID-19 pandemic has driven seven years of digital

seen. You also have an understanding of those who

member of your office staff answering the phone.

transformation in less than a year. If only a small

have had to knock the loudest to be heard. Asking,

Their specialty might be accounting or administrative

percentage of organizations embrace hybrid working,

knowing, and using someone’s gender pronouns is a

tasks, not dialing in an AVR. How much do they know

it is still a huge opportunity for the AV industry. Video

positive way to support and respect those around you,

about our industry? Have you trained them, or are you

streaming will lead the way, and there are rewards for

and it takes nothing more than the time to ask the

just hoping for the best?

all who embrace it.

question and listen for an answer.

8

SCN // August 2021 // avnetwork.com



NEWS

CCS Presentation Systems Turns 30 founder and CEO John Godbout. “This is a relationship

2006

business—not just between you and your employees

high school students to become installation

but among other companies, between manufacturing

technicians. Courses are taught by CCS Integration

partners. Your relationships with those people are

staff. Candidates receive a job offer after successful

absolutely important.”

completion of the program.

CCS Through the Years

2009

business we continue to grow and thrive,” said CCS

1991

CCS unveils CCS University, an internship program that encourages

CCS builds the CCS Manufacturer Product Showcase, which allows

CCS makes $59,000 in revenue its first

customers to see and interact with AV solutions prior

year and, against the odds, keeps pushing

to purchase. This initiative sets a standard for how

into 1992. Annual revenue across the CCS group now

CCS displays new AV products to educators,

tops $160 million.

businesses, and other clients.

1995

2010

CCS opens its first partner office in Texas. Today, the company has grown to

CCS rolls out a series of AV designs aimed at small business so even those

The original CCS Presentation Systems partners.

11 regional partners with 28 offices, covering 40

just starting out can afford practical solutions that

C

states.

enhance collaboration, sales, and productivity.

SCN Top 50 list, turns 30 years old on June

1998

25. Beginning as a two-person operation

with demand and reach more customers across the

education customers the option to split their overall

in 1991, CCS now has more than 350 employees

country.

payments over multiple years. The program allows

nationwide, and annual revenue across the CCS

2000

CS Presentation Systems, No. 7 on the 2020

group tops $160 million.

CCS launches its online division, ProjectorSuperstore.com, to keep up

2012

CCS announces Tech Now, Pay Later, a privately financed program that gives

A strong advocate for education, CCS

schools to focus on increasing student engagement

initiates a contest with Proxima that

rather than finding ways to pay for it.

IBM, John Godbout and his wife Beth decided in 1991

effectively into their classrooms. Seventy applicants

2013

that they wanted to set down roots in Phoenix, AZ.

and four winners later, CCS continues to support

benefit of local customer service. CCS vets all

That decision laid the foundation for a small

educational innovation.

prospective partners for six months, and once the

audiovisual company that eventually become one of

2002

Recognizing the need for full-service

process is complete and they are deemed a good fit,

design and installation, CCS creates an

support is given to the newest partner with the

After moving nine times for his previous job with

the top AV integrators in the nation.

awards local educators who integrate technology

“We are thrilled that after so many years in integration division, CIS. The company currently 1_3p loop.qxp_WIRE BUSHINGS 1 4 pg 7 09 7/13/21 12:05 PM Page 1 manages more than 50

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confidence that they will return on that investment and grow the brand.

and more than 100 installation technicians

500,000 votes are collected in six weeks from people

nationwide.

across the state hoping their school will win a

2005

contest for Arizona schools. More than

high-tech classroom fitted with the latest AV

the CCS

products and services.

subsequently the CCS

2020

Mobile Training Center, a

able to continue servicing its customers when

44-foot converted racecar

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Training Center model and

CCS is considered an essential business during the COVID-19 pandemic. It is

hauler that travels to schools to train educators across the country.

Below CCS Presentation Systems partners in 2021.

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NEWS

SnapAV Rebrands as Snap One

broadest portfolio of best-in-class products; the one

comes on the heels of several major corporate

shopping experience that can be done online or

developments, including the acquisition of

in-store; and the one partner that professionals can

networking provider Access Networks and a

depend on when installing and supporting the

significant investment in remote support solutions

amazing experiences that their customers desire.”

provider Parasol. Established in 2005 and based in Charlotte, NC,

The new name also signifies a unified company

S

that includes legacy SnapAV and Control4

Snap One designs, manufactures, and distributes

organizations following their merger in 2019.

smart solutions for homes and businesses to make

“Together, now as Snap One, the company can serve

life more enjoyable, connected, and secure. The

napAV CEO John Heyman announced

as the industry’s central source for everything needed

company’s product platform includes more than

a corporate rebranding in July to more

to succeed, today and in the future,” Heyman said.

4,300 proprietary SKUs in entertainment,

accurately indicate the scope of the

“The name Snap One emphasizes our desire to be the

connectivity, and infrastructure, along with two

one-stop-source for the solutions that integrators

software platforms (OvrC and Control4 OS3) that

need—including control—whether it’s with our own

provide broad interoperability with thousands of

solutions or third-party products.”

third-party products from hundreds of vendors.

company’s business. SnapAV is now Snap One. Heyman said that the new name reflects the company’s goal of being the leading provider of solutions, services, and platforms for custom

Snap One partners may shop online or in one of 27

Later this year, Snap One will unveil a unified

installation integrators whose businesses have grown

portal that will allow integrators to research, quote,

brick-and-mortar stores for Snap One value-added

well beyond AV products.

and purchase any products from a single location. The

tools, training, and support processes that drive

company will also offer a single, streamlined loyalty

business efficiencies that enable integrators to

we are or our aspirations for the future,” Heyman

program. “Our goal has always been to offer great

be more successful, according to the company.

said. “We kept the name ‘Snap’ because of our

products and top-tier services that simplify the

ongoing mission to make our partners’ lives easier.

integrator’s life and support their business,” Heyman

Snap One builds on this legacy and reinforces our

added. “Our new platforms and services are designed

aspiration to be the integrator’s most valued and most

to do just that.”

“The name SnapAV no longer fully represents who

trusted partner. We want to be the one place with the

The announcement of a new company name

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NEWS

Workers Aren’t Ready to Return to the Office

A

time zones.

Bridging the Gap Between Decision-Makers and Employees

meeting (26 percent) and missing out on critical information (21 percent), while a further 17 percent say that they appear unprofessional because of poor sound experiences. The experience issue extends to

fter 15 months of working from home as a

As lockdowns begin to ease and signs of normal life

collaboration tools used, with 16 percent reporting

result of the pandemic, companies in the

return, many decision-makers are anticipating the

that the equipment they use is “not fit for purpose,”

United States are hoping to establish an

advantages of a genuinely hybrid model for the

while 13 percent report having difficulties seeing

equilibrium this fall that hinges on bringing workers

workplace. However, there are notable differences of

details shared on screen.

back to offices. But recent research from EPOS finds

opinion between decision-makers and employees

that there is a notable divergence in the expectations

regarding the return to work.

of decision-makers and employees regarding the

This disparity is present globally, with the widest

Over time these negative experiences can affect employees’ ability to focus, engage, and actively contribute. Fortunately, decision-makers are

return to work: 56 percent of global business decision-

gulf in the United States, where 74 percent of

recognizing the impact that bad audio can have on

makers expect an increase in employee time spent at

employers expect workforces to return to the

their business and employee wellbeing: 88 percent

the office, while only 26 percent of employees expect

workplace, compared to just 29 percent of employees

accept that technology shortcomings have caused

the same.

surveyed. These results suggest that on a global level,

problems over the past year. A further 77 percent

decision-makers need to engage and align with their

believe that the right technology can overcome

globally, with employees scattered across cities and

employees to better understand their expectations.

collaboration experience issues and are prepared to

countries, audio and videoconferencing tools proved

By understanding and meeting employee needs,

make necessary investments in equipment and

essential for keeping in touch. The new research,

business leaders create a strong hybrid working

infrastructure. Solving technology problems could also

commissioned by EPOS and conducted by Ipsos, finds

model that will in turn help secure future talent.

go far in persuading employees that virtual meetings

As hybrid working patterns begin to take shape

that professionals today spend an average of seven

Forward-thinking sectors are already recognizing

can be just as good as in-person ones going forward.

hours a week in virtual meetings—an increase of two

an opportunity to fully support remote work

hours a week in just the last year.

programs to tap into a vast and global talent pool,

be defined by their ability to support employees with

thereby creating greater business agility while

the right technology solutions, tailored to needs and

gaining significant cost savings.

expectations. Technology offers a clear way to bridge

In a world rebounding from a pandemic, progressive businesses need to embrace the best of both worlds. The benefits of virtual working are now

Successful businesses in the hybrid workplace will

the gap between differing expectations and priorities:

well known, and employees are keen to preserve some

Alleviating the Pain Points of Bad Audio

of the convenience, flexibility, and adaptability that

For employees across all markets, critical challenges

the potential to bring the best of both worlds to

remote work promises. Though they may hope to

in the hybrid working setup stem from bad audio or

post-pandemic work. Moreover, in helping to

bring employees back to the office, 99 percent of

video experiences, with close to all (89 percent) end

eliminate distractions, collaboration technology both

workplace decision-makers still see the advantage of

users currently experiencing difficulties in virtual

enhances human interaction and increases

virtual meetings, which deliver time and cost savings,

meetings. The most common experience issues

professionalism, helping businesses to reach a gold

and enable meetings to take place seamlessly across

include misunderstanding what’s being said in a

standard for the hybrid workplace.

high-quality, integrated audiovisual solutions have

Genelec Debuts G Innovation Lab, Seeks Engineering Talent Professional loudspeaker manufacturer Genelec

office park, the G Innovation Lab will welcome

The interaction gives candidates the opportunity to

has established the first branch of its new G

talented individuals with varying skill sets but with

learn more about Genelec while the show the

Innovation Lab in Kuopio, Finland, with the goal of

a strong interest in the audio industry starting this

panel how their ideas and talents can enrich

nurturing creativity and entrepreneurship in the

fall. The lab’s location was selected in hopes that it

Genelec and the pro audio industry in general.

Savilahti region of the country, and attracting

would facilitate even closer cooperation with

imaginative professionals to the area.

regional universities and educational institutions, a

technology, industries and audio community is

goal Genelec has long valued.

profound and extremely exciting,” said Siamäk

The company has launched the Discovery Event Pitch Challenge, an initiative Genelec expects will

Kickstarting the recruitment process for the G

“The ongoing transformation in our society,

Naghian, managing director, Genelec. “Our own

help it recruit a team of “startup-minded”

Innovation Lab is the Discovery Event Pitch

success as a company has always been fueled by

individuals that will help it further develop the

Challenge on Aug. 23 and 24. In this hybrid live/

individuals determined to push the boundaries of

“innovative thinking that has helped inspire the

online event organized in conjunction with Finnish

their imagination, and we see the G Innovation Lab

company’s developments over the last four

“talent pond” experts Pondi, career seekers and

as an essential vehicle for unleashing the hidden

decades.”

entrepreneurs will be given a chance to present

creative potential existing in our local community

their ideas to a panel of senior figures at Genelec.

and attracting new talent to the region.”

Located in Kuopio’s KPY Novapolis Microkatu

12

SCN // August 2021 // avnetwork.com


NEWS

ADI Mobile App Streamlines Services for Dealers

T

he new app from ADI Global Distribution offers

reorder past shipments, and make product lists by project or

dealers a fast and easy way to shop at ADI from their

customer.

mobile device. Dealers can search for products,

“The release of our new app is the next step in our

check pricing and availability, place orders, and manage

strategy to transform the customer’s digital experience at

their ADI account while they’re away from the office.

ADI. And to help us get it right, we incorporated feedback

The app makes it easy to access ADI’s wide selection of

from customers across the entire design and testing process

security, AV, and other low-voltage products. While users

to improve the connected customer journey,” said Laura

may always log in with a password, the app supports facial

Phelan, global vice president of digital experience and digital

and fingerprint authentication so users can get what they

branch at ADI. “The ADI app gives our customers a fast and

need quickly and reliably. Customers can expect faster

convenient way to access the products, support, and services

loading times, improved navigation, clear messaging and

they rely on from ADI.”

product organization, and an updated navigation bar with links to products and services.

In addition to ADI’s complete product portfolio, the mobile app provides access to ADI’s deals centers, monthly

With the app’s integrated barcode scanning

sales flyers, training and events, value-added services, and

functionality, customers can find detailed product

more. ADI says it will continue to add new features and

information and check pricing and inventory levels faster.

functionality to the app, and make it easier for dealers to

The streamlined checkout process allows users to choose

shop at ADI.

local branch pickup or select the shipping option that fits

The app is currently available for U.S. customers and can

their project timeline and budgets. Via the app, customers

be searched as ADI US Mobile in the App Store and Google

can manage their ADI account, check order status, easily

Play Store.

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avnetwork.com // August 2021 // SCN

13


NEWS cape canaveral, fl—tvONE’s ONErack universal powered mounting system has taken on one of its most mission-critical applications to date after being installed at America’s United Launch Alliance (ULA) sites, which provide rocket launch services for NASA spacecraft. At Perseverance’s launch in July 2020, United Launch Alliance’s sites at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station and California’s Vandenberg Space Force Base had more than 30 of tvONE’s ONErack units installed and in play. All of ULA’s recent launches for NASA have relied on ONErack as an anchor in their intricate, demanding, and future-looking technology systems and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future, according to tvONE.

Kramer Acquires Wow Vision

ACT Entertainment Unifies ACT Brands

A

Kramer Electronics has acquired Wow Vision, a wireless collaboration software development

CT Lighting announced the launch of ACT

support they need to enhance their, and their clients’,

company, through the purchase of the

Entertainment, a corporate entity formed

creative visions. ACT Entertainment enhances live

remaining 50 percent of the outstanding shares

by bringing together the brands of the ACT

experiences by discovering, developing, and

of the company.

Lighting and RHC Holdings family of companies. The brands include MA Lighting, Ayrton, Robert Juliat, Luxibel, ProCo, RapcoHorizon, Lava Cable, RAT,

delivering products that create value for our

“We are incredibly excited that Wow Vision

customers while supporting our products with

and its talented team of software engineers

industry-leading service and education.”

have joined the Kramer family,” said Gilad Yron,

AC Power Distribution, Zactrack, MDG, and

Dale Williams, president and COO of ACT

ChainMaster. Headquartered in Jackson,

Entertainment, added, “Given the

MO, ACT Entertainment will operate

challenges faced by the

CEO of Kramer. “This acquisition will strengthen our R&D capacity and enable us to continue accelerating Kramer’s growth, especially in the

from its facilities in New York, Los

entertainment industry in the

strategic areas of networked software-based

Angeles, Toronto, Texas, and

past year, it was clear to us that

solutions, collaboration, unified communication,

we needed to be a more unified

and cloud technologies. It also demonstrates

and efficient organization, a

our ongoing commitment to investing in

Massachusetts. The value offered by ACT Entertainment is more than

more nimble and agile entity that

the sum of its parts, according

works more effectively together.

to the company: “The new ACT is

The need for internal change grew

a streamlined organization that takes a holistic approach to the industries

organically as our industries evolved and changed. By unifying all of our companies into a

innovative technologies that offer our customers and partners better and smarter automated solutions to collaborate, share, and communicate in hybrid working and learning environments.” “Kramer’s growth is fueled by innovation and

it serves, curating critical entertainment technologies

single solution, ACT Entertainment positions us to

and bringing leading products and services to its

better service each of our markets as their industries

our ability to develop the best solutions in the

clients across multiple distinct markets.”

rebound.”

market,” added Yuval Cohen, managing partner

Ben Saltzman, CEO of ACT Entertainment, said,

“As ACT Entertainment, we will be better able to

of Fortissimo Capital and chairman of the board

“Offering exceptional products and services, ACT

match our product brands with customer needs while

of Kramer. “Kramer continues to invest in

Entertainment gives the most exciting and valuable

servicing each end market in the way that makes

technologies that will further enhance its

entertainment technologies in the world a single

sense to them,” added Saltzman. “We’re building

leadership in providing solutions for the rapidly

home in North America We are exclusively focused on

something bigger to universally address the

changing environment for how people

empowering our customers with the tools and

entertainment industry in a new and exciting way.”

communicate, work, and study.”

Tim Kuschel Forms T3 Academy

A

V professional Tim Kuschel has formed

gathering en masse is once again allowed for

T3 Academy, we want to provide access to refresher

T3 Academy, a nonprofit training resource

meetings and live events, technicians will be

information, as well as new subjects that expanded

for the live events and audiovisual

returning from a long hiatus,” said Kuschel. “The

during the pandemic such virtual and hybrid events.”

communities. By working with manufacturers, industry groups, and production companies, T3’s goal is to make product training accessible across regions and help broaden the understanding of emerging technologies related to live events. “As the pandemic winds down and

14

SCN // August 2021 // avnetwork.com

shuttering of entertainment and live events for more than a year has forced many technicians to pivot to other occupations. Those who remain are returning with financial and emotional

T3’s board of directors includes Kuschel; Robert Murdock; Erik Iversen, PMP; Meg Sciarini-Smith, CTS; Ken Freeman; and Chrissy Sara, CTS-I. .

stresses and perhaps some job fade. At For more information on the organization, visit t3.academy


NEWS cologne, germany—The LED displays deployed at Lanxess Arena for EuroLeague’s recent Final Four matchups featured show control by Christie Pandoras Box v8 and video processing by Christie Spyder X80. Spanish company Laser AV was commissioned to handle the integration and technical execution of AV for the event, which included live broadcasting, signal distribution throughout the stadium, signal management of the screens, and signal relay via fiber optic cable.

Digital Signage Expo to Return in 2022

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next year, March 21-23, at the Las Vegas Convention Center. The trade show, which

was acquired by Questex earlier this year, will take place concurrently with the Bar & Restaurant Expo, “Our research shows that the industry strongly desires an event that brings digital signage suppliers

the exhibitor list will expand beyond digital signage equipment providers to those who use digital

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market leader, DSE. “The conference program will be

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attract, inform, educate, and entertain.” “Our goal is to design an event that becomes the foundation for a digital community platform and

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event. Gleeson is a veteran of the world of tech startups. He has written for Digital Signage Magazine and has been involved in initiatives that helped build the foundation of the digital signage industry. Questex’s DSE planning process will involve consulting with an advisory board whose members will share expertise and insights about technology, digital-out-of-home, and experiential events. In addition to Gleeson, the advisory board includes Rich Ventura of Sony, Laura Davis-Taylor of InReality, Nick Belcore of Peerless-AV, and Stephanie Gutnik of Verizon.

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avnetwork.com // August 2021 // SCN

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NEWS san diego, ca—To create an optimum acoustical listening environment that can be fine-tuned for various performances, a Meyer Sound Constellation acoustic system has been installed inside the Rady Shell at Jacobs Park, making it the first Constellation system designed for stage acoustics in an outdoor venue.

Black Box Inks Distributor Agreement with ScanSource

PAMA Leads Industry Initiative on Neutral Nomenclature

Black Box has finalized a partner agreement

T

with ScanSource that calls for ScanSource to distribute Black Box AV, IoT, networking, cabling, infrastructure, and KVM product solutions.

he Professional Audio Manufacturers

organizations for the implementation of unified

Alliance (PAMA) is working with its

terminology across the industry in the spirit of

members and industry trade organizations

inclusivity and consistency,” explained PAMA

ScanSource will tap new opportunities in North

to address outdated language and terminology

Board chair-elect and Inclusion Committee

America within the networking, security, and

issues increasingly identified as discouraging a

member Karam Kaul of Harman. “It comes down

pro AV markets.

spirit of inclusivity within the professional audio

to treating each other with respect. PAMA is

community.

working in collaboration with Audinate and a few

“With offices across North America and a portfolio now including the Black Box line of AV,

“The goal of this project is to introduce and

other member organizations, using an Audinate

networking, cabling, and KVM products,

create normalcy around neutral language in the

framework as a starting point, with additional

ScanSource is better positioned to supply

audio industry,” said PAMA Inclusion Committee

added elements such as addressing the

solutions with the features, flexibility, and

member Dawn Birr of Sennheiser. “As we all strive

replacement of gender identification of connectors

reliability essential to mission-critical

for continuous improvement in our work, personal

with the neutral designations ‘plug/socket.’”

applications,” said Jason Fulford, director of

lives, and society, often it’s the small steps that

channel sales at Black Box. “We’re pleased to be

get us to our goals. We hope that by taking these

working with ScanSource to address these key

actions, we can begin making meaningful change

customer requirements across multiple verticals.”

happen over time.”

“We’re excited to add Black Box’ portfolio of

PAMA circulated a survey to PAMA membership

The result is a list of suggested terms to replace current terminology. The PAMA document “PAMA Recommendations for Neutral Nomenclature in Pro Audio” can be downloaded at tinyurl.com/PAMA-NN-Guide.

peripheral solutions to our current line card of

companies to gather feedback regarding

This is a living document that will continue to

services and solutions,” said Brian Cuppett,

problematic language (e.g., master/slave in

evolve with ongoing input from the industry

senior vice president, supplier organization,

clocking references and eliminating male/female

at large.

ScanSource. “The addition of Black Box’s

in reference to connector topology) and soliciting

product offerings will enable ScanSource to

input on alternate, neutral terminology.

to seeing this initiative through in their individual

“The intent is for PAMA members to

documentation and communication, thoughtfully

provide more complete solutions to our partners.”

recommend adopting a framework within their

Reflect Systems Launches Ovation

R

companies in our industry for years, we felt it was time to accelerate this effort and bring more packaged resources and structure to our

“PAMA member companies have committed

applying these guidelines,” said Kaul.

CTI Opens Seattle Office

program,” said Lee Summers, CEO at

Conference Technologies Inc. (CTI) has opened a

Reflect. “With the growing

new office in Seattle, WA, to provide a more

eflect Systems has launched a new partner

importance and increased complexity of enterprise

accessible location for its clients and employees.

program called Ovation. The program allows

digital signage initiatives, effective partnering is

CTI says the new office will allow the company to

hardware and service providers to better

absolutely essential to helping our clients achieve

better serve customers and offer an improved

their objectives.”

work environment for its staff members.

leverage the company’s offerings by providing a wide range of tools and support including

“The incentive program is a great way to reward

“We are excited about our new office in

installation and use training, joint marketing

our partners for connecting Reflect with companies

Seattle, and we’re ready to enhance our offerings

programs, and consulting and creative assistance.

needing digital signage,” said Mark Daniel, vice

to the Northwest,” said John Laughlin, CTI’s

As an added benefit, eligible partners will receive

president of partner development at Reflect. “When

president and CEO.

a referral incentive on all Reflect software sold to

Reflect and our partners work together, we are able to

The new office is located at 1455 NW Leary

customers the partner introduces to Reflect.

further deliver compelling solutions that drive great

Way, Suite 400, Seattle, WA.

“Though we have been partnering with other

16

SCN // August 2021 // avnetwork.com

business outcomes for everyone involved.”


NEWS

Earn 5.5 AVIXA CTS RUs at the 2021 AV/ IT Summit

T

Cindy Davis to Lead AV Technology Future, the global platform for specialist media, has appointed Cindy Davis as the content and brand director for AV Technology. Since 2015, Davis has been a contributing editor to Future’s AV

he 2021 AV/IT Summit, taking place virtually on Aug. 5, has been approved

Technology (AVT) magazine, writing in-depth features and the Manager’s

by the AVIXA independent Certification Renewal Committee to provide

Guide series, as well as contributing articles to sister publications Systems

learning opportunities for CTS holders and others for their continued

Contractor News (SCN) and Sound & Video Contractor (SVC). She helped

professional development. The event is worth 5.5 AVIXA Renewal Units (RUs) for

launch the AV/IT Summit in 2016, and she recently developed and moderated

CTS, CTS-D, and CTS-I holders.

the New Era AV/IT webcast series.

“We are committed to providing quality education to the pro AV community,

“It’s an honor to join Future officially, but, to be honest, I’ve felt part of this

and the number of CTS RUs available to our attendees drives that point home,” said

great team since 2015,” said Davis. “Whether in print, digital, video, online, or

Megan A. Dutta, content director, Systems Contractor News. “We’ve gathered an

virtual or live events, the Future team has always worked together with the

incredible collection of speakers who are ready to help attendees learn in a fun and

common goal to deliver outstanding content to its audiences and value to its

engaging way.”

sponsors. I am fortunate to have the opportunity to continue with them as I

“It’s so important to continue to hone your skills throughout your career. Learning new methods and sharing experiences with peers drives your professional

help the AV Technology brand evolve.” “AVT set the standard and continues to be the leading forum for AV/IT

growth,” added David Labuskes, CEO of AVIXA . “We’re thrilled that Future, the

managers, an influential decision-making community. Cindy Davis is the

producer of the AV/IT Summit, has made the commitment to become a CTS RU

ideal leader to take AVT into the next decade,” added Adam Goldstein, vice

provider to support pro AV professionals’ education.”

president and market expert at Future.

For more information or to register for the event, visit avitsummit.com/2021.

SCN332.AD_.indd 10

7/16/21 12:40 PM


NEWS ASSOCIATIONS

Tom LeBlanc to Lead NSCA into the Future

T

and to discuss the organization’s mission and ideals. At the annual NSCA member meeting during its Business and Leadership Conference (BLC) in February 2021, Wilson announced his intention to reduce his role at the organization so he could focus on the NSCA Education Foundation and Partner Alliance for Safer Schools (PASS

om LeBlanc has been selected as the

group, which consists of Wilson and

K-12), in addition to other volunteer

next executive director of NSCA. LeBlanc

current and former NSCA board

ventures.

replaced Chuck Wilson, the association's

members, created a plan for an

longtime leader, in the position. According to the organization, succession planning is among the many business challenges

After employee agreements were

orderly and logical leadership

reviewed and written in March,

transition.

LeBlanc assumed the executive

The LDC considered several

director role in May of this year.

NSCA helps members tackle. Most integrators are

factors—most importantly the needs

Wilson, who will remain CEO of NSCA,

extremely reliant on their principals, but those

of NSCA’s constituents—in its

will spend approximately 20 hours a

leaders eventually need to retire or take a step back

transition plan. A primary goal of the

week focused on the NSCA-related

from day-to-day operations. However, creating a

transition would be ensuring that the

activities where he can make the most

successful transition plan takes work.

organization could maintain its value

impact.

NSCA found itself in a similar

and relevance to

“I am proud to serve as NSCA’s

Tom LeBlanc

situation about two and a half years

members regardless of

ago. Wilson, whose industry

personnel, and with minimal

have a strong team led by director of operations

experience and expertise contributed

disruption to services or programs.

Teresa Solorio and director of business resources

to nearly all of NSCA’s deliverables,

In April of 2020, the LDC created a

executive director,” said LeBlanc. “We

Mike Abernathy. Our collective goal is to elevate

was eyeing a reduction in his work

shortlist of candidates for the

NSCA employees, the NSCA board, and NSCA’s

schedule. While he did not want to

executive director role and ultimately

committees and councils to raise the bar even higher

retire, he wanted a role that would

identified LeBlanc, then NSCA

when it comes to our industry-leading resources,

allow him to work fewer hours and

director of industry outreach, as their

consultation, business conferences, and advocacy.”

dedicate time to volunteer initiatives.

top pick to fill Wilson’s shoes.

Around the same time, NSCA

Throughout the fall of 2020,

launched the Leadership Development Council (LDC). The

Chuck Wilson

“I’m not following in Chuck’s footsteps,” LeBlanc added. “Instead, as Chuck says, ‘We’ve

LeBlanc shadowed Wilson to learn

been working together for years—we might as well

about his day-to-day responsibilities

keep walking side by side for a few more.’”

CompTIA Members Offer Aid to Victims of Ransomware Attack

C

ompTIA announced several actions to

composed of internal and member resources that will

supply chain attack” by the Cybersecurity

help IT companies affected by the

help any IT firm that is the victim of a cyberattack,

Infrastructure and Security Agency and the FBI—was

ransomware attack that has impacted

regardless of whether they are a CompTIA member.

inevitable, especially for MSPs. A 2021 CompTIA

Additionally, the CompTIA ISAO is providing

survey found that 62 percent of MSPs were very

organizations worldwide. CompTIA member companies are providing

near-real-time updates on the attack in its Cyber

concerned and 30 percent somewhat concerned

immediate assistance and support to other IT

Forum, with the information available to the entire

about being targeted by cyberattacks.

companies, and through them to customers victimized

industry, not just ISAO members.

by the ransomware attack that occurred on July 2. “Within hours of the attack being discovered,

“This was a global attack impacting companies

The CompTIA ISAO works closely with public and private cybersecurity agencies and organizations to

around the world, reminding us that we face

help its members raise the cybersecurity awareness

more than three dozen members of the CompTIA

unprecedented threats from cyberattacks unlike any

of the global tech industry. The community of nearly

Information Sharing and Analysis Organization

threat we have collectively faced in the past,” Shoer

1,200 member companies shares best practices,

(ISAO) offered assistance, including driving or flying

said. “That is why it is critical that we engage in an

cyber threat intelligence, educational content, and

to impacted companies to provide additional boots on

active discourse that discourages “cyber-shaming”

more to help address these ever-evolving threats.

the ground, as well as sharing communications,

and encourages public and private organizations to

Communities like the CompTIA ISAO are critical to

incident response strategies, technical support and

come forward immediately and share as much threat

helping MSPs and MSSPs, large and small, to

other resources,” said MJ Shoer, senior vice president

intelligence as possible to limit the damage of these

understand the threat landscape and help them be

and executive director of the CompTIA ISAO.

attacks and to ward off future incursions.”

prepared for attacks, current and future. For

Building on this immediate effort of peer-to-peer help, CompTIA is forming a Rapid Response Team

18

SCN // August 2021 // avnetwork.com

Shoer noted that many industry professionals felt that this attack—classified as a “sophisticated

complete details on the CompTIA ISAO, visit www. comptiaisao.org.


ASSOCIATIONS NEWS

responded to supply challenges, with

companies are struggling to transport what is being

43 percent reporting they’d passed

produced. On the employment side, companies are

price increases along to consumers

seeking to hire workers to meet spiking demand but

and 37 percent reporting they’d made

are struggling to do so as fast as they’d like.

early purchases. “Interestingly, our data show

Just as the AVI-S accelerated, so too did the AV employment index (AVI-E), which moved from 60.4

AV Sales Growth Soars to NearRecord High

that supply issues are not specifically a recent issue,”

in May to 62.8 in June. 62.8 is the highest level for the

said Peter Hansen, economic analyst, AVIXA. “In our

AVI-E since August of 2019. All the data AVIXA

May poll, more respondents reported that supply

analysts have collected since the start of the

issues peaked in 2020 than in spring of 2021. That’s

pandemic affirms that current staffing levels remain

certainly not what the headlines suggest. Why the

well below 2019 levels. That said, with all the hiring

discrepancy? We think it’s a sign of the growing

happening now both inside and outside of AV, supply

positivity. Sure, AV companies had supply issues last

is dwindling fast. Companies would be wise to hire

I

summer, but back then, those problems were dwarfed

sooner rather than later, as it will enable them to hire

n June, AV sales growth reached its second-

by missing sales. Supply problems are a genuine

quality candidates at reasonable salary levels, which

highest level in the nearly five-year life of

challenge—but that they are top of mind now is

may not be possible come fall.

AVIXA’s Pro AV Business Index. At 69.6, the June

another indicator about how the worst of the

AV Sales Index (AVI-S) comes in 5.9 points higher than May. A telling sign of the industry’s growing

pandemic has passed.” The accelerating growth seen in the AV industry is

U.S. employment data shows signs of the future for our industry. In June, the U.S. economy added a massive 850,000 jobs. To facilitate these hires,

health is that this month was the first time since

a story being played out throughout the rest of the

companies were forced to raise wages, with average

the start of the pandemic that COVID-19 wasn’t by

economy. We are moving from a state of lower

hourly pay for hotel, restaurant, and entertainment

far the most cited negative business factor by survey

economic activity to one of higher economic activity,

venue employees jumping 2.3 percent in June and 6

respondents.

and the speed of this transition is causing growing

percent total in the second quarter alone. A similar

pains. The impacts of this conversion are felt most

runup in wages is very possible for pro AV as the

comments, supply chain issues have taken primacy.

acutely in supply chains and employment. Producers

number of unemployed and underemployed AV

Respondents highlighted a number of ways they’ve

are struggling to ramp up production and shipping

professionals declines.

While the pandemic did show up in many

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avnetwork.com // August 2021 // SCN

19


PEOPLE THE WAY THEY SEE IT

Positive Changes Joe King Discusses the Evolution of the PPDS Brand in North America

By Katie Makal

done before—and I truly believe we are doing that.

Joe King Position: Vice President Company: PPDS

pandemic. JK: There is something of a stop-start history in the

: How so? : It’s been quite an eventful start to the year for

hospitality space for our company under its various

JK: Our focus is on truly understanding and

guises over the years. As PPDS, everything has now

PPDS in North America. As someone who has been

supporting the needs of the market—not only to

been put in place to meet the needs of our partners

with the company for a number of years, how do you

solve their existing and future challenges, but to help

and end customers; this wasn’t a kneejerk reaction.

view the evolution?

maximize their investments. That may sound

We’ve assembled a highly knowledgeable and

JOE KING: I’m actually entering my sixth year with

obvious, like I’m reciting good PR talk, but it’s how we

experienced team, and have launched what we truly

the company and 34th year representing the Philips

operate, from the first meeting where an idea is

consider to be the most complete hospitality TV

brand, which I can hardly believe.

discussed to the moment product solutions are

available anywhere in the current market. The value

installed … and even beyond that. Also, unlike some,

of Philips MediaSuite to the hotelier and to the hotel

quite significantly in order to keep pace with the ever-

we don’t build hardware and then decide which

guest is vast. Our strategy to offer long-term value

changing needs of the market and, of course,

market it should be sold into. Being part of the

aligns perfectly with the needs of the hotel industry

advancements in technologies. PPDS, which

world’s biggest provider of consumer displays and

during these challenging times, while MediaSuite’s

rebranded from Philips Professional Display

monitors, coupled with an enviable and unmatched

technical capabilities ensures guests have a TV

Solutions in February, is a really exciting company to

R&D team, each of our products is built to even the

experience comparable to or better than the one they

be a part of, perhaps more so now than ever before.

smallest detail to meet the needs of a specific vertical.

have at home.

To answer your question, things have evolved

We have seen some incredible global growth and positive changes, not just in terms of products and

: Can you provide some examples?

: What is Philips MediaSuite and why do you

solutions, but in the overall value we provide to our

JK: We recently introduced our T-Line interactive

consider it to be different?

partners and to end users.

multitouch displays. Producing best-in-class display

JK: That’s a short question with a long answer. In

technology is essential, and to do that, we listened to

terms of differentiation, the key thing to remember is

people who use these products in the field to make

that Philips MediaSuite is the first smart TV

America?

sure even small details—such as the positioning of

specifically designed for a hotel room. Everything has

JK: We’ve always been strong in North America and

plug sockets and the number of HDMI, USB, and

been designed to create the best possible home-

responsible for a wide variety of fantastic projects and

USB-C ports—were designed appropriately.

away-from-home experience on the TV, whether it’s

: How would you describe PPDS in North

installations. You might say we’ve been performing

From a teaching and learning perspective, we’ve

for business or pleasure.

under the radar for a while, resisting the demand to

acted on feedback to combine hardware and software

communicate our successes. But as a business, both

that encourages greater engagement, collaboration,

hotels today are based on a consumer smart platform,

locally and globally, we’re expanding. We’re not just

and interaction between students—whether they are

not a commercial one. That’s hugely significant in

investing in our portfolio but in our people, too, and

physically in the room, studying remotely, or off sick.

terms of capability, usability, and the overall

attracting great talent.

Students can use their own device to view and control

experience. Feedback from our partners, which

content seen on the screen and share content. You

includes hotel owners and guests, shows that many of

retail, education, corporate, healthcare, food and

simply can’t do what T-Line does by taking a generic

the benefits of smart TVs are not getting used, so the

beverage, broadcast, public venues, and hospitality.

blank screen and loading a bit of educational software

expectations are low before the guest even enters the

We know we’re not alone in this, of course, with many

on it and calling it an education display.

room. That’s not right. But until now, that’s been the

We now cater to all major markets, including,

of our competitors claiming the same, but at PPDS we try to do things a little differently. Our intention when

Smart TVs are not new, but the ones found in

reality. : Why did you choose now to return to

We didn’t want to add another TV to the mix or

entering any market is to offer something new and to

hospitality? It’s arguably one of the toughest

adopt the common tactic of trying to surpass our

lead from the front rather than follow what’s been

periods in the industry’s history because of the

competitors by simply adding a brighter or bigger

“The launch into hospitality was a big announcement for us last month and will of course remain a key focus for us in 2021 and beyond, but that’s not taking anything away from our focus on other key industries, namely education, retail, corporate, and broadcast.” 20

SCN // August 2021 // avnetwork.com


THE WAY THEY SEE IT PEOPLE

few steps ahead to meet their needs, and offer them solutions that will support their business. To do that, we have to take an open approach by breaking the silos between hardware and software provision by encouraging full and easy integration with innovative third-party companies. This allows our customers to be truly creative with the solutions they add to our displays, and we make it our business to support them with our global trusted network of partners should they need them, while also enabling them with easy free rein development opportunities. : Could this strategy mean PPDS is moving away from Philips products? JK: PPDS will continue to proudly hold the exclusive global rights to Philips Professional TV and Digital Signage products, software, and innovations. What we are going to do is provide solutions to our SIs to help them serve their end customers in a more efficient way. In essence, we will be strengthening our ecosystem to better fulfill the needs of our end customers. That objective includes leading from the screen and a fancy new name. MediaSuite has been in

front around sustainability, which continues to be a

development since 2015. By taking a fresh and

subject of growing importance for businesses, and

modern approach, we’ve equipped it to overcome the

rightfully so.

historical frustrations of hotel TVs and address the : Your new branding comes with a new tagline,

modern needs and requirements, both for the hotelier and their guests. When a guest enters the room, the

“Powering Evolution.” Can you explain what this

TV must at the very least match their expectations

means?

and the capabilities they use at home, if not improve

JK: For us, evolution is a constant act, and every

on them.

organization must ensure they keep pace with the world around them. That ties in with our strategy for

: Due to the pandemic, 2020 was a tough year

open platform technologies, making our hardware

for many in the industry. How was it for PPDS?

(the display) just the beginning. With total solutions

JK: 2020 was a challenging year for everyone, and for

and create solutions relevant to this very

and a full display range for the B2B sector enabling

many, the impact of the market conditions will

unprecedented and unforeseen environment.

audience engagement for our customers, we can help

continue to be felt throughout 2021, too. With the

The market changed, customer needs changed, so

power their evolution.

various lockdowns and restrictions, it has been

we had to change, too … and fast! 2020 really showed

difficult for the market, but I’m incredibly proud of

what we were capable of as a business, and proved

within our sector, to support the industry as a whole

Equally, we recognize the need for evolution

how we have responded to the conditions, and of the

that our focus is fully on supporting our customers

through these more challenging times, and also to be

decisions we have made to not only support and

and being proactive about providing them with

more globally aware.

protect our own staff, but our partners, too.

solutions as and when they need them most. : What else can we expect to see from PPDS in

: What have you done?

: As you mentioned earlier, the company

2021?

JK: The big thing is, we didn’t cut any staff and we

recently rebranded from Philips Professional

JK: We still have some important launch plans for

didn’t put anyone on furlough. In fact, the team, both

Display Solutions to PPDS. Why is that important?

2021, but we’re not quite ready to talk about them yet,

here in North America and across the globe, actually

JK: We’ve been moving toward this point for a while,

so stay tuned! Our business in North America, is

grew.

using Philips PDS (Professional Display Solutions)

growing at a pace we’re comfortable with and we

and then PPDS progressively over the last couple of

don’t want to risk that. The launch into hospitality

health—of our staff was and continues to be

years. This change isn’t just about a shorter name and

was a big announcement for us last month and will of

paramount, so remote working has been in place for

a fresh new look, though. It’s a mark in the ground for

course remain a key focus for us in 2021 and beyond,

more than a year. Thankfully, the way the business

us, a pivot to a more total solutions strategy. We want

but that’s not taking anything away from our focus on

has been set up, we are able to continue to operate

to offer not just a piece of hardware but the whole

other key industries, namely education, retail,

with some form of normality—juggling work with

package.

corporate, and broadcast. As I said, we’re growing at a

The health and safety—including mental

pace we’re comfortable with, and one that ensures

family life, while communicating not just with our teams in North America but across the world. Daily

: Why did you feel this was needed?

our customers always get the best service. We won’t

video calls and constant communications with our

JK: The industry is evolving. Needs and demands

launch into new areas if it risks compromising or

colleagues, partners, and R&D teams have allowed us

from our partners and their customers are always

diluting other areas. We’re not here to make up the

to respond to the conditions, to continue to innovate

changing, and we have to move with them, think a

numbers.

avnetwork.com // August 2021 // SCN

21


PEOPLE EXECUTIVE Q&A

Collaboration and Correlation D&H's Peter Hurley Discusses Driving New Opportunities

Peter Hurley Position: Director – Pro AV Practice Company: D&H Distributing Overtime: Hurley enjoys spending time with his three kids, wife, extended family, and friends. He is a passionate sports fan and enjoys running, biking, golf, and good bourbon.

By Megan A. Dutta

Long-term, we will leverage new investments D&H has made—especially over the past 18 months— such as adding experienced sales, solution architect,

our partners as a total communication solution from

vendor management, and purchasing talent. These

one trusted distributor, enhancing productivity and

What are your responsibilities?

investments become a catalyst, helping us meet

the customer experience. We will increase partner

PETER HURLEY: I am the director of D&H’s pro AV

expanded opportunities head-on in categories like

profitability through turnkey offerings incorporating

and collaboration business unit. My primary

collaboration, digital signage, video walls, audio, AV

hardware, software licenses, content management,

responsibility is to lead a team that includes sales,

distribution, and wireless/touchless communication

and professional services like BOM creation, site

vendor management, purchasing, marketing, and

across building and campus environments. D&H also

surveys, and installation.

solution architects. Furthermore, I work with the

has a specialized focus on SMB and mid-market

leaders of our professional services, UC, and cloud

partners, including outstanding offerings for the

cloud business units will create a wider opportunity

teams to develop best practices and identify areas

education space.

to drive sales of personal collaboration equipment

: What is your position, and what does it entail?

of opportunity and growth for our partners and vendors.

The correlation between our established AV and

in both the business and education verticals. The : What is the greatest challenge you face?

move to software and collaboration in these sectors

PH: I like to view them as opportunities rather than

has propelled sales of AV hardware such as

challenges. We have a major opportunity to

professional cameras, audio technology, and

PH: I’ve been at D&H for three years, but I’ve spent

evangelize pro AV as a viable and profitable addition

wireless equipment, which can be complemented

more than 20 years in the field of AV, and 30 years in

to our partners’ businesses. Another opportunity is

with a collaboration platform such as Zoom or

the IT/AV industry overall.

meeting the demand of businesses returning to places

Microsoft Teams.

: How long have you been in this position?

We will help partners profit from the continued momentum of dvLED video wall kits from major

“We have a major opportunity to evangelize pro AV as a viable and profitable addition to our partners’ businesses.”

display vendors in our portfolio. We can help partners choose the correct vendor and display size (whether a 100-inch or 210-inch-plus), register the project, complete the site survey, and install with our Professional Services team. These impressive formats and sophisticated technologies empower partners to meet the growing demand across a range of vertical markets. Specific to outdoor experiences, we are working

: How has your background prepared you for your role?

of work, school, and worship, both full-time on-

with our resellers and vendor territory sales managers

premises and in hybrid environments.

on projects that include outdoor video walls for

PH: My history has included leadership roles in areas including IT/AV distribution, display, digital

messaging and entertainment, and weatherproof : Where do you see the pro AV market heading?

audio. These projects enable a unified experience that

marketing, multinational telecommunications, and

PH: It’s going “up, up, and away!” Users who are

incorporates audio, video, collaboration, wireless,

with global reseller firms. Working with this mix of

returning to work environments recognize that they

signal management, and furniture technologies for

organizations has enabled me to develop the skills to

need to upgrade the equipment that was purchased in

indoor and outdoor installations.

build businesses from their infancy into self-

a rush during the pandemic. This includes

sufficient organizations. I have worked for leaders

sophisticated technology to support their evolving

who have challenged, supported, and guided me

requirements in remote and hybrid settings. D&H’s

themselves to profit from products and/or services

during my career.

professional services and vendor line card

you have to offer?

accommodates this shift in the economy. In addition,

PH: Systems contractors should look for partners with

we see an increased focus at D&H’s solutions-based

the resources and expertise to expand and augment

PH: My short-term goal is to build out D&H’s pro AV

strategy with our cloud practice, dvLED video wall

their own offerings. D&H maintains an extensive line

practice by offering enhanced integrator, reseller,

installations, and outdoor solutions.

card, an experienced sales and solution architect

: What are your short- and long-term goals?

manufacturer, and internal co-owner engagements programs, including through cloud-based solutions

: How can systems contractors better position

team, and relationships with a roster of best-in-class : Are there new initiatives we are likely to see

AV and IT manufacturers. A wealth of helpful content

that leverage the as-a-service model, which is driving

from D&H?

is listed on our pro AV mini site at DandH.com/ProAV.

technology consumption.

PH: We will deliver our suite of integrated products to

For more information, email ProAV@DandH.com.

22

SCN // August 2021 // avnetwork.com



PEOPLE NEWSMAKERS

Randy Klein

Daniel Feldstein

RANDY

systems integration strategies

KLEIN is set

that bring the company’s core

to retire from

broadcast, digital signage, and

CRESTRON

electronic business and

after more

consumer operations closer

than 30 years

together. Korte will also drive

with the

Ted Korte

AUDIO-TECHNICA has

Rep News

appointed BENCSIK ASSOCIATES as its manufacturer’s representative firm for Florida.

technology and service

company. DANIEL FELDSTEIN, current chairman and

innovations that enhance USSI Global’s value as a

AURORA MULTIMEDIA has engaged with Jim

COO and the son of Crestron founder George

turnkey project management company.

Bowles of ETICKET AV to represent the company in the Southwest U.S., including

Feldstein, will assume the role of president and CEO.

Arizona, Nevada, and Southern California.

Daniel Feldstein has been with Crestron for more

HEWSHOTT INTERNATIONAL

than 25 years. With a background in computer

has hired BRANDON CREEL,

engineering, Feldstein spent the first decade of his

CTS-D, to run its U.S. office.

B-TECH AV MOUNTS has signed on seven

Crestron career in R&D, playing a role in designing a

Creel has a master’s degree in

regional manufacturer’s representative firms

number of the technologies Crestron still employs

mathematics and broad

to help extend the B-Tech brand to new and

today. Since then, he has been working in operations

experience across multiple

existing customers: AUDIO GEER, THE FARM

sectors. According to the

AV, HWPCO, MAINLINE MARKETING,

alongside Klein and the company’s late CTO, Fred

Brandon Creel

Bargetzi.

company, he has a particularly strong track record in

MOMENTUM GROUP, PRO VIDEO AND

the performing arts and theater sector, where his

SOUND, and VISITEC.

CHRISTIE has

ETCP CR-T and CEE certifications are critical. LENCORE ACOUSTICS has expanded the

added

Francois Godfrey

Maz Zaeefjou

FRANCOIS

PAUL LAMARRE has joined

territory of CARDONE & SOLOMON

GODFREY and

SYMETRIX as regional sales

ASSOCIATES into the Mid-Atlantic, which

MAZ

manager for the eastern United

includes Delaware, Maryland, Washington,

ZAEEFJOU to

States. In this role, he will be

D.C., and Northern Virginia.

its

working with Symetrix’s

professional services team as directors of sales and

partners to identify their specific

business development. Godfrey and Zaeefjou will be

Paul Lamarre

responsible for new business development

technical and service teams to support them.

needs and coordinate Symetrix’s DAVID JOHNSON has joined ACT

opportunities and partnerships across the professional

ENTERTAINMENT as senior vice

services portfolio, which will be expanding to

ASI AUDIO has hired industry

president of sales. He will be

encompass a broader range of vertical markets

technical sales professional

responsible for the entire sales

including government and large-scale attractions.

PEDRO ROCHA as field service

team as they integrate the

engineer to introduce the

Brian Schumacker

David Johnson

multiple disciplines of the

BRIAN SCHUMACKER has

company’s 3DME in-ear

joined HALL TECHNOLOGIES as

monitoring and hearing protection

sales opportunities. Johnson will liaise with top live

system to the pro audio

designers to help them realize their creative visions,

company and identify cross-

regional sales manager.

Pedro Rocha

Schumacker will lead sales for

community. Over his 20-year career, Rocha’s roles have

and will work with the entire ACT team to identify and

the company in the central

spanned sales and sales management, marketing,

execute long-term goals to better serve the market

region, covering Utah, Colorado,

business development management, and education.

and grow the business.

Kansas, Nebraska, Iowa,

Missouri, Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota,

MSE AUDIO, parent company of

OLEKSANDR ANTONENKO has

Illinois, and Wisconsin.

seven pro and residential audio

been hired by ELEVEN

brands, has appointed JIM

ENGINEERING’s growing

B-TECH AV

LATIMER to the position of

research and development

MOUNTS is

regional sales manager, northern

design team. Antonenko has a

expanding its

U.S. Latimer brings of 24 years of

Irene Zuniga

Joan Iem

sales staff

Jim Latimer

with the

including ADAM Audio, Symetrix, and Sonic Foundry

addition of

to this role.

experience with companies

B.S. degree in electrical Oleksandr Antonenko

IRENE

engineering from the University of Alberta. PEBBLE has appointed TANYA

ZUNIGA and JOAN IEM. As Eastern U.S. inside sales

ATLONA has appointed industry

RAI to the newly created position

rep, Zuniga will focus on generating sales and

veteran RENE YZAGUIRRE

of marketing and

coordinating with partners in the Midwest,

regional sales manager, south

communications manager. Rai

Northeast, and Southeast. Iem has assumed the

central U.S. With consideration to

will help develop a consistently

position of Western U.S. inside sales representative.

his commercial AV experience,

engaging voice for the brand

Atlona has extended Yzaguirre’s

Tanya Rai

south central territory beyond the

content, and will support the team in multiple

across all channels and types of

TED KORTE has joined the executive team at USSI

Rene Yzaguirre

GLOBAL as vice president of programs and innovation

TOLA region (Texas, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Arkansas)

marcoms activities as Pebble embarks on the next

lab. Korte will focus on technology development and

to Mississippi and the metropolitan Memphis area.

phase of its expansion plans.

24

SCN // August 2021 // avnetwork.com


AV for UX BUSINESS Moment Factory devised a site-specific show called Lumina Night Walks that transforms outdoor sites into illuminated journeys, creating moments that invite people to safely reconnect in public. These enchanting, revenue-generating experiences increase a site’s visitorship and engagement, while contributing to helping local and regional economies. Pictured is Alta Lumina, the 12th night walk of Moment Factory’s Lumina series and their first collaboration with Les Gets ski resort. Alta Lumina is a year-round experience designed to diversify Les Gets ski resort’s range of activities.

Designing AV for UX By Carolyn Heinze

enlists user panels—in essence, focus groups— during the conception phase of a project to gain an

Accessible UX in UIs

I

understanding of how people from different

when AV designers don’t consider UX, their systems

experience in Asia, the cultural point of view is very

is ensuring that the UI can be accessed easily by

won’t meet desired adoption goals. But achieving

different from North America,” and the team adjusts

people with disabilities. “This includes making

good UX isn’t easy, given the diversity of AV proj-

the perspective accordingly.

sure buttons, backgrounds, and text all provide

t’s safe to say that good AV systems prioritize

demographics (such as age, gender, cultural

user experience, and that good AV designers

background/nationality) will react to the experience.

place UX above all else. It’s also safe to say that

“Our projects are so diverse. If we’re creating an

One key element to good user interface design

sufficient contrast against each other,” said

ects, the number of stakeholders involved in them,

Prior to joining Moment Factory, Mornet worked

and, of course, the users themselves. Recently, SCN

in the web industry, where she says solid UX is easier

Audrey Bryson, a user experience researcher

sat down with a number of UX experts who work in

to achieve because projects are limited to a screen. In

and designer with a background in AV. Web-

several different markets to discuss the importance

her current position, the canvas may extend to built

based products, for example, should support

of UX in AV design.

environments, and sometimes the great outdoors.

screen readers, while systems in a built

“You don’t react to an experience in the forest in the

environment need to be mounted at

headquartered in Montreal, QC, that specializes in the

same way as you would in an indoor space,” she said.

appropriate heights. “In all products, there are

creation of immersive environments, the focus is on

“We have to anticipate people’s behavior in the space

usually text elements for which designers might

storytelling and emotion. “The user is really the

that we’re using, and how they will interact together.

play a role in the type of language incorporated

starting point, and then we explore how we can tell

For example, are they going to be alone, or are they

into the final design. Simplifying instructions

the story to make them feel certain emotions,”

coming with their family?” These are all

and using plain language can go a long way in

explained Céline Mornet, production manager and

considerations that Mornet and her team must take

improving readability and understandability.”

innovation lead at the firm. In many cases, the firm

into account while conceptualizing, mocking up, and

At Moment Factory, a multimedia studio

avnetwork.com // August 2021 // SCN

25


BUSINESS AV for UX LEVIATHAN

The experiential design elements that creative agency Leviathan devised for the McDonald’s corporate headquarters in Chicago range from simple welcome boards to details promoting corporate initiatives to profiles of donors to the Ronald McDonald House. On the second floor, Leviathan's largest interactive experience greets Hamburger University management trainees. Responding to motion and touch, and capable of accommodating scores of interactions simultaneously, this powerful experience engine educates through an elegant use of interactive timelines and an expansive video archive, inviting users to engage directly with the brand's far-reaching legacy. The brand experience is presented on a 30-foot interactive touch display.

testing the experiences they create. Leviathan is an experiential design agency based

experience researcher and designer with a

interaction with a projector, audio system,

background in AV, said that user experience

and switcher.

in Chicago, IL, that creates experiences for branded

designers often overlook the fact that in order to

environments, themed entertainment spaces, public

reach their end goal, users must interact with a

intuitive products throughout their journey, but more

“Ideally the end user experiences consistency and

spaces, and live events. Chad Hutson, co-founder and

multitude of systems. She cites an office building as

often than not these systems are installed in an

CEO, explains that the project stakeholders he works

an example: A visitor enters the lobby and must

inconsistent and piecemeal fashion, which can easily

with are varied, ranging from C-suite executives,

interact with a display to learn the location of their

cause frustration for the user and the overall

marketing and technology directors, and sales

meeting; when they get to the room, they may be

experience to suffer,” Bryson said.

enablement personnel, to architects, AV firms, and

prompted by the digital signage at the door. Once

other agencies. Still, he estimates that the discovery

inside the meeting room, they may then interact

in this environment is designing a system that will

process his company follows at the outset of a project

with the control system to launch a

provide a good experience for different types of users,

is pretty standard.

videoconference, which may in turn require some

including administrators, IT professionals, less

Bryson acknowledges that a significant challenge

“Our strategy and discovery conversation is probably no different than what an AV firm might ask: What’s the end goal here? Who is using these systems? What type of work do they perform in these spaces? How many different applications may need to be used? What are the stories that are being told?” Hutson said. Some experiences may have an educational goal, while others are more focused on emotion and engagement. “Thinking about those kinds of experiences requires us to ask all of the technology questions, but then to also ask, What do we want

Chad Hutson

them to feel? What do we want them to take away from this? What is it that we want them to transact with?” It’s also necessary to consider if users are simply interacting with an experience of their own accord, or if it’s something they’re being guided through by someone else, he added. Of course, UX considerations shouldn’t be reserved for immersive, experiential design. If users in the enterprise, higher education, and government markets are to adopt the technologies that AV integrators deploy, UX should be the priority. Audrey Bryson, a Morrisville, NC-based user

26

SCN // August 2021 // avnetwork.com

Adam Banks

The Museum of Science, Boston, invited Moment Factory to collaborate on the development of the permanent exhibit Arctic Adventure: An Immersive Exhibition. Moment Factory delivered engaging exhibit experiences with generative content and interactive tools, pushing the boundaries of exhibit design with augmented learning.


LEVIATHAN

AV for UX BUSINESS

Chicago’s United Center serves as the home stadium of the Chicago Bulls (NBA) and Chicago Blackhawks (NHL). Fans visiting the facility can learn about the history of the championship teams through several interactive installations conceived, created, and programmed by creative agency Leviathan. One such installation, Interactive Timeline, is an immersive video presentation appearing on a 10-foot-wide interactive monitor that allows multiple users to simultaneously explore the evolution of basketball and hockey over the years.

technical users … and yes, even integrators. “There needs to be a clear objective in terms of which persona should be prioritized, and care should be taken to create the best experience possible for all types of users, despite the fact that they likely have very different expectations and understanding of the technology,” she said. Adam Banks is co-founder of UX-Study in London. UX-Study builds and supports UX labs, which

For the annual Tanween conference, Moment Factory created Play2, an exhibit that highlights their mission of bringing people together by taking games out of screens and into the physical world. In this exhibit, four interactive games projected on one surface allowed visitors to play collectively within an immersive environment.

often include an AV element, for brands across the globe. Prior to co-founding the company, Banks spent

meetings differ when you’re meeting with people

those terms to find out what they need, and then you

10 years at Google, first working in AV design before

physically versus virtually? What about when you’re

can narrow it down.”

moving into research space design and then UX

meeting in hybrid format? Broad concepts rather than

research at the company. Before joining Google, he

specifics, he said, are the best starting point.

worked in AV design and integration at a global

For Banks, the most important ingredient in a good UX design process is iteration. “I’m not just

“What you don’t do—what you never, ever do—is

going to talk [to the users] once, design something,

financial firm and with the British government. He

ask them what they need,” Banks said. “They’ll tell

then walk away,” he said. “I’m going to go through an

said he’s also worked at an AV integration firm.

you, they’ll give you an answer, and they will be wrong

iterative process of designing things, testing them,

because people don’t know what they need.”

prototyping—constantly going round and round the

In approaching the design of a meeting space, for example, Banks emphasized that he would talk to

What users do know are the goals they’re setting

iterative circle until I’m happy with what I’ve got.

users about how they use technology in the

out to achieve, he said. “The meeting is never the

Then I’ll deploy it. Then I’ll test it again.”

workplace—but not about what they need (or think

goal; the goal is something else. The goal is to get a

Carolyn Heinze is a freelance writer/editor.

they need) out of a meeting room. “Because it might

new client, or impress

be that we don’t need meeting rooms. We’ve already

someone, or grow their

jumped to the assumption that we’ve got to build

business. There are

some meeting rooms, but maybe we don’t need to,”

these different layers of

he illustrated.

goals in a kind of inverse

Instead, he argues that these questions would

pyramid, and nowhere in

eventually lead to a better solution: When you have

that pyramid is ‘use a

meetings with people, what are they for? What are

piece of technology.’ You

you trying to achieve? How do they work? How do your

need to talk to people in

Custom Wall Plate Design Design and quote custom wall plates and panels from anywhere you have Internet access using Covid’s Panel Spec software.

Pandemic-Driven UX Chad Hutson, co-founder and CEO of Leviathan, says that his firm has been working with gesture technology for the last decade. He notes an increased potential for interest in this technology in the wake of the pandemic, provided that it’s user-friendly. “There’s not a universal language [that says] raising your hand this way means X,” Hutson said. If systems require users to spend too much time learning how to interact with them, the experience is compromised. “Gesture technology can be very daunting in that you don’t have the time to teach someone how to do all of these complex forms of interaction. If we are going to use gesture technology—if we want it to be a seamless user experience—it has to be very intuitive: right hand to forward the content, left to reverse content. Simpler is better when it comes to those kinds of technologies.”

800.638.6104 avnetwork.com // August 2021 // SCN

27

www.covid.com


BUSINESS NETWORK SECURITY GETTY IMAGES/TEERA KONAKAN

The potential for third-party peripherals to compromise an organization’s network is the single biggest security issue integrators are dealing with heading into late 2021 and 2022, according to Tim Albright.

Locking Down Post-COVID, It’s a Brave New World for IoT and Network Security

office environments after a year or more of working at home, they may bring devices with them that have not been vetted by IT staff. Tim Albright, chief marketing officer at Conference Technologies Inc. (CTI) and CEO of AVNation, said that the potential for third-party peripherals to compromise an organization’s network is the single biggest security

By Jim Beaugez

O

because the host neglected to use safety protocols

issue integrators are dealing with heading into late

such as requiring a password, or because they didn't

2021 and 2022.

sequester attendees in a queue so they could be

“Up until a year and a half ago, the IT department

f the many cultural buzzwords coined

verified before being allowed into the meeting.

was also the procurement department for everything

during the COVID-19 pandemic, the

Sophisticated hackers can mimic profiles of actual

that was on the network,” said Albright. “Now, a year

term “Zoom bombing” may be the most

guests, making it harder for the host to kick them out

and a half later, folks have gotten equipment on their

of the call.

own to make their work-from-home [situations]

memorable. Early in 2020, celebrities like Kristen Bell and

“The best way is to have at least one step of

Conan O’Brien popularized the practice of surprising

authorization, but two steps can ensure that there

online videoconference attendees by joining their

isn’t a breach or someone who is not authorized

work. That stuff is going to start finding its way to the office and onto the office network.” Organizations have ways of locating unapproved

meetings unannounced. As charming as that

in the meeting,” said Steve Greenblatt,

peripherals, such as by deploying tools that

may be, not all Zoom bombings are

CTS, president and founder of Control

continually scan the network for known and unknown

innocuous. Bad actors use these virtual

Concepts. “A lot of these steps take time

MAC addresses and can alert IT or the AV integrator

break-ins to secretly snoop on corporations

and effort, make conferences less

when an unauthorized device is connected. But those

and organizations. They may also share

convenient, or make more work for people,

measures are purely reactive. Greenblatt says

inappropriate images and videos meant to

but they will result in a more secure

proactive maintenance can prevent security threats

disrupt the proceedings.

outcome and allow hosts to avoid those

Like other computer and network

types of embarrassments, as well as

hackers, Zoom bombers rely on human

potential security breaches.”

fallibility and poor judgment to gain

Zoom bombing is just the tip of the

access. The most common entrance is right through the front door, either

28

SCN // August 2021 // avnetwork.com

Tim Albright

from infiltrating the network in the first place. “Vulnerabilities are happening all the time, and computers these days are getting updates and security patches to address new threats,” he said. “It’s very

proverbial iceberg of new network

possible that becomes part of a maintenance

security threats. As workers return to

agreement. In my business, for example, we have


NETWORK SECURITY BUSINESS

somebody who looks at our website every month to

can also help prevent network hacks. It’s

make sure we don’t have vulnerabilities, that we’re

relatively easy for a hacker to match default

network vulnerability. “You’re talking about yet

updating our software to make sure that somebody

IDs to Wi-Fi routers and other connected

another entry point that could be a vulnerability,

can’t come in and hack our website. If we apply that

devices, and AV systems are particularly

and if it happens that an [Amazon] Echo or

idea to an AV system, you look at the devices or the

susceptible to distributed denial of service

another type of voice interface is listening, then

setup [and determine if] they need to be better

(DDoS) attacks in which vast numbers of

secured. What was in place when the system was

devices across many networks are

and be able to track what is happening,”

turned over may not be as effective now because of

manipulated simultaneously.

added Greenblatt. “As we try to make

new vulnerabilities or issues that may have been identified since then.” In addition to regular audits and multifactor

internet-connected smart devices create more

[hackers] can know what you’re talking about

These “zombie attacks” can be large in scale, and costly to fix. A

systems intelligent, we have to be concerned about them having access to

Steve Greenblatt

well-known example in 2016 took

information that gives them more power

authentication, integrators can set up a VLAN, or

down Netflix and many other networks along the East

virtual local area network, to help protect against

Coast. In the mix of devices exploited in the attack,

security threats. VLANs allow partitioning of a server

Albright noticed something troubling to the AV

sophisticated, vigilance in the fundamentals of

so that different classes of connected devices can be

business: zombie web cameras and network-

network security will be more important than ever.

grouped together. “The challenge with that, though,

compromised speakers. “When I saw that, it’s like,

is that there are still some ports that need to be open”

yes, the AV industry certainly has an issue with this,”

that you’re only as strong as your weakest link,”

to allow certain local devices to be able to access the

he said. “We have an issue because our devices are

concluded Greenblatt. “We do a good job of having

internet, Greenblatt said. “There are also AV over IP

being put on the network more frequently, which

technicians [pull wiring], and we have experts who

devices that need to be able to traverse the network to

means we need to make sure we’re doing the simple

know how to set up products and make sure an image

be effective, so while VLAN can be very powerful,

things, such as changing the login and password.

looks good and the room sounds good, but we should

there’s always going to be a need to open up access

You’ve got folks who can take control of these

also have an IT or cybersecurity specialist who can

outside of it.”

because they’re public-facing, on the network, on the

give our clients confidence because they know

internet.”

they’ve brought somebody in who’s going to protect

Simple practices many people ignore, like changing devices’ default usernames and passwords,

On the horizon, the increasing numbers of

Whatever your conferencing challenge, MAXHUB is the solution. MAXHUB’s collaboration ecosystem enables your business to realize the full potential of UCC technology that are optimized for use in conference and education.

than we know.” As networks grow more complex and devices more

“The rule of thumb I think everybody goes with is

them.”

Irvine, California (949)-270-5325 www.maxhub.com/en maxhubsales@cvte.com

1-800-398-5652

1-877-307-6689


BUSINESS TN STATE MUSEUM

Preserving History with AV Tennessee State Museum Deploys SDVoE Technology to Showcase the State’s Rich History By SCN Staff

T

common areas that host events, lectures, panel

in the museum field; and Northern Light

discussions, and film screenings.

Productions, creators of transformative experiences

“Particularly exciting is the way we tell these

for brands, museums and public venues. Sue Lepp, senior vice president at D&P, is gratified

he Tennessee State Museum, which opened

stories through sophisticated AV presentations,” said

in October 2018 on the corner of Rosa L.

Ashley Howell, executive director of the Tennessee

by visitors’ enthusiasm and critical acclaim the

Parks Boulevard and Jefferson Street in

State Museum. “Each visitor learns differently—

institution has received. She sees the facility as the

Nashville, has already become a must-see attrac-

through seeing, hearing, and touching—and our

blueprint for the modern museum.

tion. Tracing its roots back to a museum opened by

audio-video presentations bring all of their senses

a portrait artist on the Nashville public square in

into play as they explore artifacts and images, view

administration and the layout of the facility,

1817 and later to a state museum that consolidated

documentaries and films, or interact with

combined with the important history-telling

World War I mementoes and other collections

touchscreen displays.”

mission, made this a particularly rewarding project to

from the state, the Tennessee Historical Society

The museum won an Excellence in Development

“The vision of the Tennessee State Museum’s

work on,” said Lepp. “A museum experience should

and other groups, the current iteration of the

Award from the Nashville Chapter of the Urban

be entertaining as well as educational in order to draw

Tennessee State Museum charges no admission

Land Institute in September 2020 for its “design

repeat visitors and keep the interest of today’s

fee and has become an important catalyst for the

and construction, catalytic effect, standard of

tech-savvy audiences.”

educational and cultural enrichment of Tennesse-

industry excellence, and environmental

ans and tourists alike.

stewardship.” In addition to the museum’s

Associates, pointed out that this ambitious project

Greg Matty, project executive at Gallagher &

executive team, the award recognized the efforts of

was executed under a tight deadline, which made

interpret objects that relate to the social, political,

the larger group responsible for the success,

efficient teamwork essential.

economic, and cultural history of Tennessee and

including Design & Production Inc. (D&P), a design,

Tennesseans. One of the largest museums in

project management, and technology system

new building with state-of-the-art AV-driven

Nashville, it spans 137,000 square feet and has hosted

integration firm for the museum market that was

exhibits—was only three years from start to finish,

hundreds of thousands of visitors since it opened.

responsible for system fabrication; and Gallagher &

which was quite ambitious,” said Matty. “All parties

A key component of the Tennessee State

Associates, a museum planning and design

pulled together to contribute value and deliver the

Museum is a flexible and feature-rich AV system

company that created all of the interpretive

world-class exhibits for visitors to enjoy and learn

that brings to life the history and stories it shares

exhibits, graphics, and donor recognition efforts,

from for years to come.”

throughout its seven permanent exhibits and a

and concepted all of the audio-visual experiences.

rotating roster of temporary and seasonal exhibits.

Exhibit software at the Tennessee State Museum

The museum additionally features a 200-seat

was developed by Cortina Productions, a creative

Next-Gen Exhibits Require HighPerforming and Cost-Effective AV

Digital Learning and Outreach Center, and several

media design and production company specializing

Examples of the museum’s many interactive and

Its mission is to procure, preserve, exhibit, and

“The timeframe for this project—to outfit a huge

visually engaging installations include the Tennessee Time Tunnel exhibit, which serves as the backbone for the entire permanent gallery. Its aim is to provide visitors a multi-layered experience with engaging media and thought-provoking interactive displays. As visitors enter the Civil War and Reconstruction exhibit, they watch a five-minute video that sets the tone of the times before they are plunged into an immersive experience that includes projected text and imagery, as well as transporting soundscapes. An interactive touch table with a map of Tennessee lets visitors access information and stories from the battlefield and beyond from each of the state’s 95 counties. In the Tennessee Transforms exhibit, another interactive map enables visitors to learn about influences that have formed and continue to form the state’s cultural identity and people’s impression of the state. A theater within the museum hosts an Visitors to the Tennessee State Museum explore artifacts and images with touchscreen displays.

30

SCN // August 2021 // avnetwork.com

interactive touch table and three large wall screens on which visitors can explore more than 100 cultural topics. The Digital Learning and Outreach Center


TN STATE MUSEUM BUSINESS A video wall takes museum visitors to the Trail of Tears, where they join Cherokee people removed from their homeland in what is now Georgia, Alabama, and Tennessee and forced to migrate west to designated Indian Territory in 1838–39.

touchscreens, Dell computers, and BrightSign video players have been standardized across the various subsystems. A fiber backbone was implemented to distribute AV signals throughout the facility. Ancillary equipment for custom touch tables included PQ Labs touch frames with Panasonic video wall displays for interactivity. All source and signal distribution equipment is located in Middle Atlantic equipment racks. ZeeVee encoders and decoders extend signals to more than 20 individual exhibit locations, many with multiple synced sources and displays. The entire system is networked via Juniper Networks EX4550 Ethernet switches. The user interface and unifying control system was custom programmed by D&P using Medialon Manager by 7thSense. Of great importance to any public venue is the reliability and ease of maintenance in support of the visitor programs. The networked and digital character of the selected equipment provides a reliable and maintainable system that is able to operate year round on an automated schedule, with options to support special events after hours. Component

provides presentation space and remote access to other museums, colleges, schools, and scholars. To provide the necessary level of technical performance for these exhibits, the museum’s technical team chose a ZeeVee and Juniper Networksdriven Software Defined Video over Ethernet (SDVoE) AVoIP solution to distribute the wide array of AV content throughout the facility. For starters, the SDVoE AVoIP network is able to deliver high image quality with near-zero latency, which was essential for the interactive exhibits. The technology also gives the museum the flexibility to quickly scale to deliver content to additional endpoints as permanent and temporary exhibits call for more sources or displays to be connected. Ambient sound is served to theaters and specialized exhibit subsystems via QSC’s Q-SYS Core 510 processor. Panasonic projectors and displays, 3M

“Our partners on this project brought great enthusiasm along with impressive skill sets to create a dynamic AV system that enabled us to meet our goal.” —Ashley Howell

The Tennessee State Museum chose a ZeeVee and Juniper Networks-driven SDVoE AVoIP solution to distribute AV content throughout the facility.

failures can’t always be prevented, but the ability to troubleshoot remotely via the Medialon control system and network access to the Juniper, ZeeVee, and Q-SYS signal distribution systems lessens the burden on the educators and museum staff. The Tennessee State Museum’s administrators, staff, and sponsors have all been impressed by the widespread positive attention the institution has generated and credit the role technology has played. “We wanted to elevate the exhibits from passive to active experiences that highlight the eras, individuals, and artists who have contributed to the development of Tennessee’s identity within the state, and its role on the national and international stage,” said Howell. “Our partners on this project brought great enthusiasm along with impressive skill sets to create a dynamic AV system that enabled us to meet our goal.”

Visitors entering the Civil War and Reconstruction exhibit watch a five-minute video that sets the tone of the times before they are plunged into an immersive experience that includes projected text and imagery, as well as transporting soundscapes.

avnetwork.com // August 2021 // SCN

31


TECHNOLOGY CEDIA EXPO

CEDIA Expo Preview Exploring the 2021 Show By Megan A. Dutta

Resimercial Innovations at CEDIA Expo 2021

2. Draper Acumen Recharge

W

Ahead of the show, manufacturers gave us a sneak peek

projection screen engineered to meet the demands of

ith the COVID-19 pandemic bring-

at the resimercial products they’ll be demonstrating on

heavy use, yet still look elegant in modern interiors.

ing about a renaissance in residential

the show floor. Read on to learn more.

The smooth, curved aluminum fascia fits in with any

audiovisual solutions, the term “resi-

mercial” may be more important now than ever to

1

commercial integration firms.

Acumen Recharge is a wireless wall-mounted

design aesthetic. The screen’s motor is powered by a lithium ion battery that runs for about 500 cycles before needing to be recharged. Tensioned and

On Sept. 1–3, audiovisual professionals will

non-tensioned versions can also be PoE and can

gather in Indianapolis, IN, for the 2021 CEDIA

integrate into home control systems. Draper

Expo—the first major in-person AV

Acumen is backed by a seven-year warranty. Booth #2212

tradeshow in over 18 months. Event organizers plan to bring more than

3. Middle Atlantic C3

10,000 home technology design and construction attendees together with

Middle Atlantic continues to

300+ exhibitors at one of the first

enhance the C3 series credenza with

in-person events in 2021 supporting the

a wide variety of available finishes to

technology sector.

match surrounding décor. High-

“We’re all eager to connect again on a human

pressure laminate (HPL) is a durable material used on

level and get back to face-to-face events as we

many furniture products that has a dimensional

celebrate everything we value as a community,” said

behavior similar to wood, meaning it will expand and

Jason McGraw, Emerald Group vice president, CEDIA Expo and KBIS. To increase the resimercial emphasis at CEDIA,

1. Crestron Home Audio Conferencing System

contract with humidity. HPL is recommended for any application in which durability and impact resistance

Home offices remain viable alternatives to the

are concerns, may be used for both vertical and

event organizers have added the Innovation Hub,

corporate office as long as they have the appropriate

horizontal surfaces. All of the HPL colors available

which will review data from research on cross-over

technology infrastructure to re-create the office

from Middle Atlantic are from the design portfolio of

and resimercial shifts. The Innovation Hub gives

experience. The Crestron UC-MM30-R tabletop

leading HPL manufacturers.

brands that have had success penetrating new market

conference device is designed to be a perfect solution

Booth #5347

segments the opportunity to share insights and

for such home office applications. The system pairs

strategy.

an enterprise-grade speakerphone, 7-inch touchscreen, and single-wire installation with native

4. Netgear M4250 AV Line of Network Switches

IMCCA will assist CEDIA Expo with the development,

Crestron Home integration to provide a convenient

Built from the ground up for 1G AV over IP, the

organization, and moderation of content session

conferencing and whole-house control companion in

Netgear M4250 switches simplify multicast audio and

discussions on unified communications and work-

a sleek form factor.

video deployments. A new AV-centric user interface

from-home topics.

Booth #3600

enables speedy configuration changes. Models with

Additionally, UC and collaboration association

2

32

3

SCN // August 2021 // avnetwork.com


CEDIA EXPO TECHNOLOGY

7

8

6

PoE+ and Ultra 90 PoE++ allow powering of AV endpoints and other devices. They are built with Netgear IGMP Plus, Auto-LAG, and AutoTrunk for true out-of-the-box functionality, even with multiple switches. These switches come with a limited lifetime warranty and access to the company’s Pro AV Engineering Services team.

high performance are

8. Terra LuminSound TrLs50

Booth #5000

required. Outdoor

Audio adds ambiance to walkways, patios, entrances,

speakers in the StingRay

and other outdoor areas of commercial environments

line are available in

including restaurants, hotels, and recreational

matte black and matte

facilities. Lighting also enhances the atmosphere. The

Planar DirectLight Ultra Series LED

white, or they can be

handcrafted Terra LuminSound TrLs50 speaker from

video wall displays offer always-on,

special ordered and

Leon Speakers combines the two features in one

high-performance, high-resolution

custom painted to

stylish device. Available in six designer colors and with

5. Planar DirectLight Ultra Series

display experiences with pixel pitches ranging from

match any décor.

a ring of LED lighting around its perimeter, the

0.6 to 0.9 mm for mission-critical and resolution-

Booth #3353

slender, 13-inch tall, IP67-rated aluminum speaker

dependent applications. It presents several display

cabinet blends in with a variety of regional landscapes.

technology advancements that, in combination,

7. SurgeX UPS + Isolation Transformer

deliver big performance. Planar DirectLight Ultra

The SurgeX UPS + Isolation Transformer is a complete

Series features models with microLEDs, off-board

power management solution featuring continuous

power supply, proprietary alignment technology, and

power supply, line interactive technology, and power

9. Vanco Certified Ultra High Speed HDMI Cable

the Planar WallDirector Video Controller (VC), with its

conditioning. Available in three models, the compact

Whether on a lobby video wall or home theater

corresponding video wall management software.

solution brings all the benefits of a large-format UPS

screen, content is king. Vanco’s Ultra High Speed

Booth #5044

to the rack, combined with a low-impedance isolation

HDMI Cables support resolutions of up to 8K @ 60 Hz

transformer to constantly filter and condition power.

and 4K @ 120 Hz with a 4:4:4 bit depth and both static

The device prevents electrical noise from affecting

and dynamic HDR formats. With features supporting

The StingRay speaker family is completely sealed,

performance, delivering clean power to the source

widescreen 21:9 aspect ratios; VRR, ALLM, and QFT for

with no exposed grilles or drivers to corrode or break

and stopping harmful harmonics from reaching

next-gen gaming; and multiple immersive audio

down. The SR6, SR8, or SR430 speakers are at home in

sensitive loads.

formats, Vanco’s Certified Ultra High Speed HDMI

nearly any outdoor environment where durability and

Booth #4149

Cables can deliver the content for any cutting-edge

6. Stealth Acoustics StingRay Speaker

Booth #4344

video application, according to the company.

4

Booth #1407

9 5

avnetwork.com // August 2021 // SCN

33


TECHNOLOGY KIOSKS

Exploring Kiosks Additionally, with organizations that are using digital By Ledetta Asfa-Woosen

signage, we have seen improved analytics that are allowing businesses to mine and evaluate historical customer data to deliver effective and targeted

I

personalized content,” said Rob Meiner, CTS,

offerings run the gamut to cover most use cases and

With pandemic considerations making users

settings, from all-in-one models to modular sys-

uncomfortable about using touch interactive displays,

tems. Tech innovations include screens with anti-

the industry is also becoming more reliant on

microbial coating and shatterproof film, contactless

autonomous AI to help with the execution of

ordering, and improved payment capabilities.

functions and tasks, noted Meiner.

n an ever-evolving consumer landscape, kiosks are helping to ensure efficiency, security, and even safety during the ongoing pandemic. Kiosk

“The pandemic has absolutely changed the use of

technical sales engineer, Peerless-AV.

Changing Landscape

“Retailers, QSRs [quick service restaurants],

digital signage, with the most significant change

hospitality businesses, and others have integrated

being the uptick in use of videoconferencing. With

mobile connectivity into their signage solutions,

our inability to travel, network in person, and keep in

allowing people to interact with the information and

contact with customers, peers, family, and friends,

data displayed on a display” via their personal mobile

videoconferencing via FaceTime, Zoom, WebEx, and

device, Meiner explained.

other platforms has become commonplace.

Luke Westin, senior product manager at Chief, also has some thoughts on the pandemic’s impact

in self-service kiosks that allow customers to have

and suggested it has only heightened the need for

one-on-one conversations with off-site customer

kiosks. “Digital signage is definitely expanding—

care representatives.

both indoor and outdoor. The need to elegantly

percent of shoppers said long lines were the most

whether it be advertising, menu boards, automation,

irritating part of shopping,” Meiner said. “That beat

virtual reception, or wayfinding. All these

out high prices (66 percent) and inventory being out

applications will grow to accommodate communities

of stock (65 percent). Eighty-four percent of those

that are now more acutely aware of health, safety, and

customers said watching digital displays helped them

security in public spaces. Importantly, digital signage

pass the time while they waited. With self-service,

can help make these spaces comfortable and

businesses can offer lower perceived wait times. Long

convenient for everyone to navigate again.”

lines are enough reason to leave a business or investing in points of sale or offering self-checkout—

experience.

anything to keep long lines from chasing off customers. People have a much easier time waiting in

a multitude of reasons, including ease of use,

line when there’s something to take their mind off

adaptability, and their role in perfecting the customer

the actual wait.”

experience for various industries,” added Mark

Some airlines are already using this technology,

Quiroz, vice president of marketing, Display Division,

giving travelers the option of videoconferencing with

Samsung Electronics America. “The challenges of a

a representative rather than using chat, email, or a

distanced world have certainly fueled our design

telephone call to solve a problem, Meiner noted.

efforts to introduce products that are safe, secure, and

“The best part of a solution like this is that it

easy to use. The digitization of the retail world and

allows customers to help themselves. Studies of

other industries continues to inspire and motivate us

customer feedback show that customers prefer

to think outside the box and to explore not simply

self-service over working with an employee. In

what kiosks should be but what they can do. Creativity

addition, self-service is the fastest and most cost-

in this sector will be the key to developing products

effective way to customer support,” he said. “Digital

that stand the test of time and pave the way for more

signage engages customers without requiring

inventive solutions.”

employee interaction. As a result, customers get the

Growing Trends

SCN // August 2021 // avnetwork.com

establishment. Therefore, any businesses should be

pushing some manufacturers to amplify the customer “Kiosks will continue to increase in popularity for

34

“According to a recent study on checkout lines, 69

enclose display technology is only going to grow,

Social distancing and changing levels of use are

The Chief Impact Landscape On-Wall Kiosk extends the display from the wall, providing easier access for service and maintenance.

Peerless-AV KIP522 Landscape/Portrait Kiosk models deliver a display signage solution that’s easy to install and maintain.

information they need to make a purchasing decision,” and employees’ time is freed up to focus on

Peerless-AV’s Meiner shared some recent

helping in situations where a customer service agent

observations and trends. One is the notable increase

can make the most impact.


KIOSKS TECHNOLOGY

AI continues to be another game-changer. “With

gender and age, emotional sentiment, recurring

the use of AI, display content can be changed at a

visitors, content touches, football traffic, and heat

moment’s notice, creating a completely new

maps.”

innovation for kiosk usage. With networked digital

Meiner warns that even with increasing

signage, content in numerous stores located

availability of self-service kiosks, there will always be

throughout the country can all be changed at the

a subset of customers who prefer to work directly,

same time from a single remote location,” he said. “If

face-to-face, with a human. “This desire for human

a business wants to advertise a new product or

interaction will continue to exist, especially for small

announce an upcoming sale, they can create an ad and

and medium-sized businesses,” he said.

deploy it across all locations at the same time. While one of the benefits of digital signage is the capability

Future Outlook

to quickly implement new sales, offers, and products,

What does the future hold for kiosks? And how will

it’s also the best way to keep brand messaging

they evolve over the next few years?

consistent across locations. The concept works in

“Kiosks need to look great and seamlessly blend

reverse, too. Operators can quickly pull offers

into a variety of environments. The ability to respond

completely or retool their marketing efforts without

to customizations is key when it comes to aesthetics

going through the lengthy and costly process of

and other features,” said Chief’s Westin. “Beyond

removing printed material and creating new material

aesthetics, I see innovation from manufacturers that

to replace it.”

have thought through the installation and servicing

Meiner believes that analytics will continue to

process. Quick installation for large roll-outs,

play a large role in kiosk innovation. For example, a

servicing or troubleshooting are important value-add

display that allows shoppers to check inventory can

features that continue to save time and money beyond

increase engagement and deliver analytics about

the initial purchase. As far as outdoor goes, there will

which products are searched for the most. If sales

be major innovations taking place with displays and

numbers aren’t consistent with this interest, it might

media players. We are also seeing outdoor displays

be time to lower the price or otherwise improve a

migrating toward System on Chip [SoC] and Smart

product’s perceived value. Without customer data

Signage Wi-Fi options, reducing the need for climate

gathered by kiosks or other interactive signage,

control of media players. As the need to support more

interest in a product would not be apparent if

signage outdoors increases, so too will the demand for

further integration of accessories like cameras, card

customers left the store without buying it.

outdoor-rated media player devices.”

readers, speakers, and microphones.

“Displays can now be outfitted with video cameras

As well as growing use in an increasing number of

The Samsung KM24A kiosk provides modular functionality to support a range of payment options.

“Technology will continue to advance in outdoor

that report a whole host of metrics,” said Meiner.

applications, especially in the outdoor space, Westin

rating of kiosks,” he concluded. “Direct view LED is

“These can include people count (or impressions),

anticipates that display technology will become even

another technology that can be applied in kiosk and

dwell time, interaction time, demographics such as

less dependent on media players and expects to see

enclosure applications.”

avnetwork.com // August 2021 // SCN

35


TECHNOLOGY NEW PRODUCTS

features standard PoE on each of its ports (excluding the uplink and SFP ports), providing combined power, data, and control for Q-SYS devices. Two NS Series Gen 2 models support PoE++ for use with Q-SYS devices that carry greater power requirements. This eliminates the need for PoE injectors and external power supplies and greatly simplifies the wiring process. The NS Series offers features that automatically manage multicast traffic on the network, with integrated Netgear IGMP Plus to provide multicast data management between multiple NS Series switches. Additionally, an optional built-in DHCP server is preconfigured, enabling automated connectivity for independently administered AV systems. THE BOTTOM LINE: The Q-SYS NS Series Gen 2 switches provide an out-of-box solution for faster, more reliable deployment of standalone AV networks.

Maxhub Raptor Series LED Displays THE WHAT: The Raptor Series of integrated LED wall displays includes seven models ranging

Planar CarbonLight VX Series LEDs

from 120 to 220 inches

THE WHAT: Planar’s new CarbonLight VX Series is a line of LED display solutions

diagonal with features

optimized to meet the needs of the virtual production (VP) and extended reality

that enable participants

(XR) markets. Featuring a lightweight carbon fiber construction, CarbonLight VX

and presenters alike to

models are deployed indoors to form a fine-pitch LED video wall, ceiling, or floor

interact more naturally.

that provides realistic backgrounds for VP, XR, and broadcast applications

Among the product

including film and television sets, broadcast studios, entertainment venues, and

highlights are speakers

education and corporate facilities.

that enhance voice

THE WHAT ELSE: Introduced as part of the Planar Studios initiative, the Planar CarbonLight VX Series delivers the performance and capabilities today’s VP and XR professionals need to create realistic on-screen content. Developed with input

intelligibility and three HDMI inputs, increasing the number of devices that can feed content to the display. THE WHAT ELSE: The Raptor Series features high-fidelity integrated speakers

from VP industry experts, the CarbonLight VX Series consists of two LED display

that enhance voice intelligibility, enabling meeting participants to hear clearly and

lines: the Planar CarbonLight CLI VX Series and Planar CarbonLight CLF VX Series.

be more engaged. The displays also offer SPDIF audio output capability, making it

The Planar CarbonLight CLI VX Series supports hanging, wall-mounted,

easier to interface the audio with consumer-grade loudspeaker systems. In

freestanding, and curved LED video wall installations, in addition to other shapes

addition to three HDMI inputs, models in the line provide USB 3.0 input

that help smaller stages appear larger. Beveled edges on VX Series models support

connectivity, facilitating increased data transfer speeds for connected equipment.

90-degree corners. The CLI VX Series also allows customers to remove and install

With the inclusion of Maxhub’s enhanced video processor, the Raptor Series is

cabinets anywhere within the video wall without disrupting the overall layout.

capable of PBP (Picture By Picture) functionality, which separates the screen in

Available in 1.9 and 2.6 mm pixel pitches, the CLI VX Series features models with

half, displaying output from two different source devices simultaneously on the

Brompton and Colorlight VP controllers.

left and right sides of the screen. PIP (Picture in Picture) is also available.

The CarbonLight CLF VX Series LED flooring features a 2.6 mm pixel pitch. It

Raptor’s Android v9.0 operating system supports LAN screen sharing for up to

can be used to create a high-resolution, continuous canvas for on-camera scenes,

four windows, in addition to low-latency stable mirroring support. This capability

virtually expanding physical environments.

provides enhanced BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) content sharing, resulting in

THE BOTTOM LINE: Building on the success of the Planar CarbonLight LED Displays portfolio, the Planar CarbonLight VX Series offers VP and XR customers LED solutions that support a range of studio sizes and configurations for outstanding flexibility in studio setup and configuration.

THE BOTTOM LINE: With improved centralized network control connectivity designed to keep meeting attendees more focused.

THE WHAT: QSC has introduced Q-SYS NS Series Gen 2 enterprise-grade, Netgearmanufactured AV network switches preconfigured to meet the requirements of the Q-SYS audio, video, and control platform. THE WHAT ELSE: These network switches provide real-time transport of Q-LAN, AES67, and Dante audio streams, in addition to Q-LAN video streaming and distribution, simultaneously within the same VLAN without the need to manually configure or adapt QoS settings. Each Q-SYS NS Series Gen 2 network switch

SCN // August 2021 // avnetwork.com

capability of 2.4G and 5G dual network duplex. and support for LAN/RS232/485 connectivity, Maxhub Raptor Series displays are

QSC NS Series Gen 2 Network Switches

36

greater flexibility for meeting attendees. Raptor displays offer upgraded Wi-Fi

Sony PTZ Cameras v3.0 Update THE WHAT: The version 3.0 update for Sony Electronics’ BRC-X400, SRG-X400, and SRG-X120 PTZ cameras adds support for SRT and RTMP/RTMPS. SRT brings high-quality transmission with low latency, while RTMP/ RTMPS allows the cameras to stream live


NEW PRODUCTS TECHNOLOGY

videos directly to social media platforms.

When enabled with Solstice Conference, Solstice enhances meeting collaboration

THE WHAT ELSE: SRT, or Secure Reliable Transport, is an open-source protocol from the SRT Alliance that combines encryption, packet loss recovery, and jitter

by adding rich content sharing along with agnostic room support for any PC-based videoconferencing application. THE WHAT ELSE: Yamaha’s ADECIA ceiling solution family of communication

prevention technologies to preserve video stream quality and integrity. SRT harnesses the latest developments in real-time IP communications, enhancing

products works seamlessly together to provide a complete and customizable audio

conventional network error recovery methods to deliver stable, low-latency media

solution for any meeting or learning space. It includes the multi-beamforming

streams. Additionally, this software update supports Sony’s Adaptive Rate Control function, designed to provide a

Plas TV Box SCN.qxp_Layout 1 7/13/21 11:48 AM Page 1

more stable connection, optimized for the network

F O R F LU S H -TO -T H E - WA L L M O U N T I N G O F L E D , H I - D E F T V s

environment and available bandwidth by controlling bit rate based on fluctuation of bandwidth.

SE E U

S AT

A C E DI36 #34

This update also supports RTMP/RTMPS (Real-Time Messaging Protocol), enabling the cameras to stream live videos directly to social media platforms such as YouTube and Facebook.

PLASTIC TV BOX

TM

R E C E S S E D P O W E R / LO W V O LTA G E C O M B O B O X E S

THE BOTTOM LINE: With support for SRT, Sony’s PTZ cameras are well suited for use in a wide range of applications including remote production, seminars, live events, education, and faith, among others.

HuddleCamHD SimplTrack2 and HuddleView Updates

CED130

THE WHAT: HuddlecamHD has added Network Device Interface (NDI) technology to its SimplTrack2 and HuddleView cameras, which provide auto-tracking and

for NEW WORK or RETROFIT

auto-framing of subjects, respectively. THE WHAT ELSE: A firmware update released in June brings NDI HX capabilities to the SimplTrack2 and HuddleView cameras. The update empowers large-campus LISTED POWER/LOW VOLTAGE BOX

applications to make more efficient use of video resources. In

TVBU505 with CED130 CABLE ENTRY DEVICE

addition to NDI discovery and

CED130 with slotted cover REVERSED for RECESSED LOOK

CED135 with brush cover

distribution, the update includes automatic multicast IP address assignment,

Arlington’s PLASTIC TV BOX™ recessed combination power/low voltage boxes offer the secure, easy way to mount TVs flush against a wall.

eliminating the need for a media server to broadcast over a multicast-capable network. Users can also define

The job looks great. Plugs and connectors stay inside these Listed boxes without extending past the wall. Available in 2-, 3- and 4-gang styles for retrofit or new work. Each offers power and/or low voltage in one or more of the other openings. There’s a box to fit nearly any application!

NDI discovery servers to handle all NDI cameras and products, reducing overall traffic load, and segregate and hide cameras in virtual groups. THE BOTTOM LINE: Current owners can download and install the latest control software from the the cameras will instantly be discoverable as NDI devices. Users will need to obtain an NDI HX license from Vizrt Group for each device for full functionality. Pre-licensed NDI SimplTrack2 and HuddleView cameras are slated to begin shipping early next year.

Yamaha UC and Mersive BYOM Room System THE WHAT: Yamaha UC has a touchless Bring Your Own

© 2008-2014 Arlington Industries, Inc.

TVBU505

HuddleCamHD website. Once the firmware is installed,

And a cable entry device with slotted or brush cover to organize your low voltage cable bundle. • RETROFIT Mounting wing screws pull box against wall NEW WORK Box screw-mounts to stud • Non-metallic box with paintable white trim plate, optional covers available

4-GANG TVB613

Meeting room solution that pairs Yamaha’s ADECIA ceiling microphone and speaker solution and Mersive Technologies’ Solstice wireless collaboration system.

2-GANG TVBU505 Patented. Other patents pending.

avnetwork.com // August 2021 // SCN

37

CED135

3-GANG TVBU507

Made in USA

www.aifittings.com Scranton, PA 18517 800/233-4717


TECHNOLOGY NEW PRODUCTS

THE BOTTOM LINE: The new offerings are available and can be ordered immediately from the Bolin and Patton websites. While Patton and Bolin are the first manufacturers to bring Dante AV products to market, there are many more manufacturers licensing the technology and actively developing products to add to the interoperable Dante AV ecosystem.

Epson EB-PU1000 Series and EB-PU2010 Pro Series Laser Projectors THE WHAT: Epson is shipping seven new compact laser projectors designed for large-venue applications, including what the company claims are the world’s smallest and lightest 10,000-lumen projectors. The new Pro L-Series comprises six WUXGA projectors ranging from 12,000 to 15,000 lumens and one SXGA+ resolution projector with 15,000 lumens. THE WHAT ELSE: Joining Epson’s existing line of Pro Series interchangeablelens projectors, the new solutions pair with Epson’s lens family. The new models RM-CG ceiling microphone and RM-CR audio processor, as well as Yamaha’s PoE

offer advanced installation features, 3-chip 3LCD for high color brightness, and

switches and VXL Series line array speakers. Yamaha’s ADECIA ceiling solution

WUXGA resolution with 4K Enhancement Technology.

clearly picks up several people speaking at the same time and ensures that voices, not noises, are captured in enclosed or open conference spaces of varying sizes. The complete solution immediately detects all components of the system and

For simplified installation, the new models offer built-in edge blending, image warping, and direct content playback with shape overlay tools from USB storage media.

optimizes them for the room environment, accounting for the location of speakers and microphones, reverberation and echo behavior. With USB, Bluetooth, Dante and analog connections, this flexible system can fit a variety of meeting spaces. Mersive Solstice is a software-based, cloud-enabled team space collaboration platform optimized for both on-site and remote participants. Multiple participants can share, control, and mark up content from any device. Solstice features agnostic room support for all major conferencing services with touchless, one-step start from the meeting host’s laptop. It seamlessly and wirelessly integrates Yamaha ADECIA audio solutions into a videoconference. In addition, it is built with enterprise-grade security and is fully IT compliant. THE BOTTOM LINE: This solution results in more collaborative meeting and learning experiences between on-site and remote participants.

Audinate Dante AV

The EB-PU1000 Series and EB-PU2010 are compatible with Epson’s range of

THE WHAT: Audinate’s Dante AV is now available as part of new solutions from Bolin Technology and Patton Electronics. These new products are the first commercially available offerings in

no angle of view adjustment and gives integrators access to automated tools including auto color calibration, screen matching of multiple projectors, tiling

the Dante AV video-over-IP networking

assist for edge blends, and the stacking assist function. Geometry correction for

platform, a new video connectivity standard

stacking can be performed without an external router or PC.

that uses 1 Gbps networks. Dante AV allows

These projectors are equipped with NFC to reduce setup time when

manufacturers to add networked video to the

commissioning a large number of projectors. With NFC technology, users can read

Dante audio-over-IP platform. It is designed to

and write setting information using Epson’s mobile app, Epson Projector Config

provide the same ease of use, multivendor interoperability, and integrated control experience of Dante’s audio solution. THE WHAT ELSE: Now available from Bolin Technology are D-series PTZ cameras featuring Dante AV. Available in both HD and 4K resolutions, D-series cameras are well suited for use in live production, houses of worship, corporate conferencing, higher education, and broadcast. Bolin is also introducing a Dante AV decoder that enables many types of AV devices to work with a Dante AV network. Patton Electronics, a U.S. manufacturer and OEM/ ODM supplier of networking and connectivity

Tool. Users can also control and monitor projectors via the Epson Projector Management application for Windows or set up multiple projectors in a single large space via the Epson Projector Professional Tool (EPPT) application for macOS and Windows. THE BOTTOM LINE: The lightweight, compact EB-PU1000 Series and EBPU2010 are designed for discreet placement in installations to maximize space without compromising quality or sacrificing brightness. They are suited for use in higher education, corporate, visitor attractions, and signage markets. The white EB-PU1006W, EB-PU1007W, EB-PU1008W, and EB-PU2010W and black EBPU1007B, EB-PU1008B, and EB-PU2010B are available now and can be purchased through authorized resellers.

solutions for pro AV and telephony, is now

PPDS Digital Display Air Quality Sensor

shipping its FPX6000 series of Dante AV-

THE WHAT: The PPDS Air Quality Sensor measures room temperature, humidity,

enabled encoders and decoders. The products

carbon dioxide, and particulate matter to help provide safer and cleaner

bring network gateways to non-networked AV

environments for schools and businesses. The sensor is powered by a single USB-A

products such as cameras, monitors, and video editing stations.

38

optional powered lenses. Epson’s new clip-on optional external camera requires

SCN // August 2021 // avnetwork.com

cable and is compatible with PPDS’ latest Philips Professional TVs, digital signage and interactive displays including MediaSuite, T-Line, C-Line, and B-Line.




NEW PRODUCTS TECHNOLOGY

THE WHAT ELSE: Live data, whether collected from one PPDS Air Quality Sensor in a single room or building or multiple sensors installed across multiple sites, is analyzed, translated, and displayed in real time via an easily digestible dashboard and app. The live data is available anywhere and at any time; an archive of historical data is saved for extensive reporting and data analytics. When indoor air quality falls below a safe threshold, alerts are automatically sounded, sent, and displayed, allowing building managers to take action immediately. The app is able to offer tailored recommendations to improve environmental conditions based on sensor readings, whether that’s something as simple as opening doors and windows, turning on air purifiers (if available), adjusting room temperature, or even requesting that staff temporarily relocate to other areas of the building or be sent home. THE BOTTOM LINE: This plug-and-play solution features sensors for temperature, humidity, carbon dioxide, and particulate matter and monitor air quality 24/7. Small in size, PPDS Air Quality Sensor can be easily and neatly installed/ attached to Philips professional displays in any environment using a specially designed bracket and assembly kit, which is supplied in the box.

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VIEWPOINT

Culture vs. Strategy GETTY IMAGES/SEKSAN MONGKHONKHAMSAO

By Luke Jordan, PMP, CTS-I

C

ulture eats strategy for breakfast, or so I’ve been told. But what if culture is the result of strategy? Every company is going to have a

different mood around the workplace, and leadership is ultimately responsible for how that turns out. It may be the result of intentional, careful planning, or it may change with staff turnover a few times a year. Two factors—job demands and resources—have a huge impact on a team’s engagement and effectiveness. Understanding how to balance these factors as a leader is paramount in creating a culture where people want to show up each day ready to make an impact in their community without sacrificing their physical or mental wellbeing. Deciding what is appropriate as an employee is equally important in

stress and frustration will always lead to burnout.

order to communicate expectations and define

Employers need to recognize when these conditions

resources and direction from management but few

boundaries so that everybody can win.

exist and should seek to solve the problem

expectations or demands, a problem still exists.

The JD-R model of work engagement that outlines

On the other hand, when there are plenty of

immediately by adding resources or lowering the

Humans look to their vocation to challenge them

the relationship between job demands and resources

expectations on that role appropriate to the amount

mentally and physically. A good manager will use

applies to parenting, leadership, and pretty much any

of resources available.

one-on-one meetings to set growth goals for their

other arena where performance is expected. The first quadrant of the model represents low

For example, if somebody quits or is let go and is

team members. Employees who are not occasionally

not replaced in the corporate hierarchy, somebody

being pushed outside of their comfort zones will not

demands and few resources, resulting in low strain

has to pick up the additional work. The unfortunate

grow and will likely not become more capable. A lack

and average motivation. Another way to look at this is

soul who is tasked to do so will be left with an

of promotion and advancement hurts the individual

that not much is expected from tasks in this quadrant,

unsustainable workload. Good communication can

and the organization equally. A person with 10 years

so there’s little direction or encouragement from

help here.

of experience is better than a person with one year of

management. These tasks lead to high turnover

When management acknowledges the imbalance

experience 10 years in a row.

because they don’t tend to offer much personal

and agrees to find additional help, the situation can

satisfaction. The opportunity exists for somebody to

be sustained for a short time with the expectation

and management to take is to set high, demanding

set their own goals and outperform the low

that it will be temporary. It is not unusual for a season

expectations paired with plenty of encouragement,

expectations, but that is the result of individual

of hard work to occur, but when the unusually heavy

resources, and direction. The outcome will always be

achievement and would not be expected due to the

workload becomes the new normal with no end in

average strain and high motivation, benefitting

nature of the work.

sight, good people will start looking for a new

everyone involved. Folks who are challenged show up

opportunity every time. Responsibility also lies with

ready for battle, care about people, and learn

the employee to communicate what they are

willingly. In turn, they benefit from good role models

experiencing up the chain and seek help in identifying

and trust, and they almost always go on to lead teams

the factors that have caused the imbalance in order to

and become change-makers wherever they go.

The next two quadrants are not balanced and have their own challenges. When the expectations or demands for a role are high, but are paired with few resources and little encouragement, it is a recipe for disaster. The high levels of

put a permanent solution in place.

Without question, the best action for leadership

Culture can change with the tides, but a strategy to create a consistent culture of engaged producers

“Culture can change with the tides, but a strategy to create a consistent culture of engaged producers always breeds a culture that everyone wants to be a part of.” 42

SCN // August 2021 // avnetwork.com

always breeds a culture that everyone wants to be a part of. Luke Jordan, PMP, CTS-I, helps people communicate their passions by crafting AV solutions that create exceptional experiences. Jordan is vice president and co-steward at Electro Acoustics in Fort Worth, TX. He chairs also AVIXA’s Certification Committee and was featured in 2018’s SCN The Nine.