A virtual press conference from Sound & Video Contractor

Archive for December, 2013

Middle Atlantic Names Brubaker Regional Sales Manager

Fairfield, NJ––Middle Atlantic Products has appointed Blake Brubaker as Regional Sales Manager for Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, South Dakota and North Dakota.

In his new position, Brubaker will manage sales for the A/V, security, data and residential market segments while ensuring that Middle Atlantic factory sales reps are properly trained and equipped with the right tools to effectively represent the company. He will also provide support with sales calls, trade shows and direct customer contact.

Prior to joining Middle Atlantic, Brubaker spent 19 years at the Da-Lite Screen Company, working his way up to VP of Sales with overall responsibility for the customer service, residential sales and A/V consultant liaison departments.

Over the years, Blake has also been closely involved with InfoComm, serving as Exhibitor Committee Chairman and as part of the Professional Education Training Committee. He was also technical consultant for the InfoComm Standards Committee specializing in projection screens.

Asked about his new position, Blake responded, “I am very excited about being part of the Middle Atlantic family. Having spent much of my career with a U.S.-based manufacturer in the audiovisual industry, this is a perfect fit and really feels like home to me. They are a great group of people who work hard and have fun doing it. You couldn’t ask for more.”

Middle Atlantic Midwest Sales Director Robert Newhuis added, “We are truly fortunate to have someone with Blake’s experience and success in sales management, knowledge of the industry, and extensive technical background. He represents a major asset and valuable addition to our team in terms of building our customer base and sales for the future.”

For technical specifications and in-depth information about Middle Atlantic Products, please click to www.middleatlantic.com or call 1.800.266.7225.

Middle Atlantic Products has been part of the Legrand group since its acquisition in 2011.

Legrand is the global specialist in electrical and digital building infrastructures. Its comprehensive offering of solutions for use in commercial, industrial and residential markets makes it a benchmark for customers worldwide. Innovation for a steady flow of new products with high added value and acquisitions are prime vectors for growth. Legrand reported sales of close to $5.8 billion in 2012. Legrand has a strong presence in the North American market, with a portfolio of well-known product lines that include Cablofil, Electrorack, Middle Atlantic, NuVo, On-Q, Ortronics, Pass & Seymour, Vantage, Watt Stopper and Wiremold. The company is listed on NYSE Euronext and is a component stock of indexes including the CAC40, FTSE4Good, MSCI World, ASPI and DJSI (ISIN code FR0010307819). www.legrand.us

Extron Introduces Two Input DTP Wallplate Transmitters for HDMI and VGA

Extron Electronics is pleased to introduce the DTP T HWP 232 D and the DTP T UWP 232 D two input Decora®-style transmitters. The DTP T HWP 232 D transmits HDMI, audio, and control, while the DTP T UWP 232 D transmits HDMI or analog video, audio, and control. These signals are sent up to 230 feet (70 meters) over a single CATx cable to an Extron DTP 230 receiver. The DTP T UWP 232 D digitizes incoming analog video for reliable display on a variety of output devices. Both transmitters are HDCP compliant and include independent stereo audio connections. They also offer many integrator-friendly features such as EDID Minder, auto-switching between inputs, remote power capability, and bidirectional RS-232 and IR pass-through for remote AV device control. The wall-mountable design of the DTP T HWP 232 D and DTP T UWP 232 D provides the convenience of placing input connections precisely where they are needed. more

ABS Builds, Supports International Broadcasting Center for 27th SEA Games in Myanmar

SEATAC, WA — Professional video and audio systems integration firm Advanced Broadcast Solutions (ABS) today announced it has been selected as the premier AV technology provider for the International Broadcasting Center (IBC) for the 27th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games, which start today and run through December 22nd in Myanmar. More than 1,000 media personnel are expected to cover the games, and ABS has been on location for more than three months preparing for the event.

Held every two years, the SEA Games include participants from 11 countries and serve as pre-qualifying contests for some track and field events for the Olympic Games. There are more than 4,000 athletes competing in more than 30 sports at this year’s event, which will be held in 29 venues across Nay Pyi Taw, Yangon, Mandalay, and Ngwe Saung. This year is the first time Myanmar has hosted the SEA Games since 1969.

In conjunction with Asia Mega Link, a telecommunications company based in Yangon, ABS was tasked with designing, building, and supporting video and audio for the media in all venues. ABS will also produce HD coverage of all athletic events, as well as the opening and closing ceremonies. Each venue includes an area for stand-ups, a “mixed zone” for interviews with athletes, and predetermined ENG camera positions with wide views of the field of play.

ABS and Asia Mega Link have installed bi-directional fiber links between each venue and the IBC, which is based in the Maniyadana Jade Hall in Nay Pyi Taw. The IBC features a three-camera TV studio with control room. Other services available include SD and HD satellite uplink/downlink, equipment rental, and daily highlight video packages available for each sport and each day. Grass Valley is the premier provider of technology for the SEA Games, providing LDX Series cameras and GV STRATUS nonlinear media production tools. Broadcasters can also rent private offices, which include a network connection, router connectivity, and GV STRATUS.

“Myanmar is an emerging country, and the SEA Games will help introduce its people and culture to much of the rest of the world with brilliant HD imagery,” said Mark Siegel, president of ABS and director of technology for the SEA Games. “ABS is very pleased to be working with Asia Mega Link to help make this event a success for members of the media who will be on site.”

About ABS:

Based in SeaTac, WA, ABS (Advanced Broadcast Solutions) delivers customized, technologically superior solutions for broadcast, corporate, house of worship, entertainment, government, and educational facilities – from design and integration to installation and support services. Since 1982, its experienced technical staff has installed more than 700 systems for clients including GOCOM Media, Cowles California Media, Cisco Systems, Meredith, and Time Warner Communications. For more information, call 206-870-0244 or visit www.advancedbroadcastsolutions.com.

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Sennheiser Digital 9000 System Drives ‘Next Wave’ of Interactive Art

The microphone system delivered uncompressed, artifact-free audio night after night to patrons donning Sennheiser wireless headphones

Los Angeles, CA, December 12, 2013: Last month, Invisible Cities, the world’s first large-scale opera for wireless headphones, completed its limited run of sold-out performances at Los Angeles’ Union Station – the largest railway terminal in the western United States. At the heart of the production, which was staged within the vast, multi-room expanse of the terminal as well as among its outdoor courtyards, was Sennheiser’s new Digital 9000 wireless system. The microphone system delivered uncompressed, artifact-free audio night after night to patrons donning Sennheiser wireless headphones.

The opera, a collaboration among The Industry, L.A. Dance Project and Sennheiser, was written by Christopher Cerrone and based on the 1972 novel by Italo Calvino. The narrative, which is accompanied by an 11-piece live orchestra being captured by a selection of Sennheiser and Neumann microphones, takes audience members on an artistic, multi-sensory journey throughout the terminal as character Marco Polo describes his quests to Emperor Kublai Khan. Thanks to professional and consumer wireless technology from Sennheiser, neither the performers nor the audience members are restricted by the typical spatial confines of a theatre, and participants are invited to experience the opera from an almost infinite number of different perspectives.

Three core technology elements from Sennheiser made the technical production possible: these included wired microphones; wireless microphones and IEM (in-ear monitoring) systems; and wireless consumer headphones. Each instrument in the orchestra was miked using Sennheiser or Neumann wired microphones while performances were broadcast to performers and audience members using Sennheiser’s state-of-the-art wireless technology. Audience participants were able to experience the entire performance using wireless consumer headphones from the Sennheiser RS 120 II system.

The Heart of the System: Sennheiser’s Digital 9000

From a technical perspective, the star of Invisible Cities was the Sennheiser Digital 9000 system, which delivered eight channels of uncompressed, artifact-free audio throughout the facility and captured every delicate nuance of the libretto. The components of the Digital 9000 system used in the opera included the EM 9046 digital receiver, SK 9000 bodypack transmitters and MKE 1 clip-on microphones.

“Digital 9000 was a natural choice for the singers,” explains Dave Missall, National Market Development, Professional Systems, Sennheiser USA. “In addition to delivering 24/96 kHz performance with unprecedented dynamic range and a non-existent noise floor, the Digital 9000 system made it easy to allocate frequencies in the middle of downtown Los Angeles, which is an extremely hostile RF environment. Since the Digital 9000 transmitters have very high linearity, intermodulation is non-existent. Therefore frequencies can be set in very close range to one another with no problems, making the system spectrum efficient.”

Running in parallel with Digital 9000 was Sennheiser’s 2000 series IEM system, which handled in-ear monitoring duties for each of the singers and dancers and ensured their performances were in lock step with the musical score. EK 2000 IEM receivers, IE 8 earbuds and SR 2050 IEM twin transmitters were accompanied by a highly complex antenna system. Four distinct zones throughout the terminal served as antenna farms to achieve seamless RF coverage for both the performers and for audience members wearing wireless headphones. Depending on the zone, A 2003-UHF passive directional antennas were deployed with A 5000-CP circularly polarized models, effectively minimizing signal strength variations while eliminating multipath issues.

Sennheiser and Neumann at the Source

Sound designer Martin Gimenez specified a diverse collection of Sennheiser evolution microphones as well as Neumann microphones to cover each instrument in the 11-piece orchestra. evolution microphones were used to capture brass and percussion, as well as overall room ambience. For woodwinds and strings, including the harp, Gimenez utilized several Neumann KM 184 small-diaphragm condenser microphones. On the piano, he selected a pair of Neumann U 87 Ai large-diaphragm condensers.

“Between the sonic immediacy of the headphone concept and Christopher Cerrone’s haunting orchestration, sonic transparency was paramount on our minds,” commented Gimenez. “Having access to the entire range of Neumann and Sennheiser microphones proved vital and necessary in order to convey the amount of detail to each and every audience member.”

Sennheiser Audio Quality, from Alpha to Omega

At the opposite end of the signal chain were four hundred wireless consumer headphones from the Sennheiser RS 120 II system, which delivered premium quality sound to the audience members during each performance. Featuring a comfortable, open-air design with easy access to user controls such as volume, tuning and an on-off switch, the combination of audio quality, comfort and ease of use made the headphones the perfect choice for this particular application.

The success of Invisible Cities’ initial run has been recognized extensively in the international press and was awarded a proclamation from the City of Los Angeles. Since completing its performances there, The Industry has entertained offers for performances in Bordeaux, France and other locations in 2014.

The Sennheiser Group, with its headquarters in Wedemark near Hanover, Germany, is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of microphones, headphones and wireless transmission systems. In 2012 the family company, which was founded in 1945, achieved a turnover of around 584 million euros. Sennheiser employs more than 2,300 people worldwide, and has manufacturing plants in Germany, Ireland and the USA. The company is represented worldwide by subsidiaries in France, Great Britain, Belgium, the Netherlands, Switzerland and Liechtenstein, Germany, Denmark (Nordic), Russia, Hong Kong, India, Singapore, Japan, China, Australia and New Zealand, Canada, Mexico and the USA, as well as by long-term trading partners in many other countries. Also part of the Sennheiser Group are Georg Neumann GmbH, Berlin (studio microphones and monitor loudspeakers), and the joint venture Sennheiser Communications A/S (headsets for PCs, offices and call centres).

You can find all the latest information on Sennheiser by visiting our website at www.sennheiserusa.com.

Photo captions:

1: Invisible Cities attendees listened to the opera on wireless headphones from the Sennheiser RS 120 II system

2: Sennheiser had four zones of antennas to facilitate wireless transmission throughout Union Station

3: The Sennheiser EM 9046 digital receiver

4: The 11-piece orchestra of Invisible Cities was miked using Sennheiser evolution and Neumann microphones

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Atlona Products on Display at ISE 2014

PRO MXM Modular Matrix Switchers
The new 4K-compatible AT-PRO-MXM-8 and AT-PRO-MXM-16 customizable, card-based, modular matrix switchers from Atlona(R) have been engineered to provide multiroom AV signal processing and distribution, single-point control for multiple digital and analog signal types, and a flexible foundation that allows for future system expansion and upgrades. Available in an 8×8 configuration for smaller systems, or a 16×16 configuration to accommodate larger and more demanding installations, Atlona’s Pro-Series matrix switchers are custom-configurable with expansion input/output cards that satisfy nearly any application or system requirement. For maximum compatibility, the devices offer universal cards that support legacy signals including DVI, VGA, composite, component, and S-Video, as well as balanced audio embedding. Additional expansion cards offer advanced connectivity options for full support of Ultra HD (4Kx2K) and DisplayPort. To boot, the switchers offer simplified control of connected devices and third-party control systems via IR and RS-232, while Ethernet connections contribute to simpler setup thanks to GUI and TCP/IP control.

Photo Caption: PRO MXM Modular Matrix Switchers
Photo Link: www.ingearpr.com/Atlona/Atlona_AT-PRO-MXM-8.jpg

New AT-HD-CLSO-612 Multiformat Switcher
New from Atlona(R) at ISE 2014 is the AT-HD-CLSO-612 switcher. Ideal for classroom and boardroom applications alike, this switcher delivers the convenience of two HDMI(R), two HDBaseT(TM), and two VGA inputs (RGBHV, component, S-Video, and composite via dongles), which provide connectivity for virtually any device. On the other side, it provides a scaled HDBaseT output to optimize the resolution displayed in the room. The AT-HD-CLSO-612 is also fully Ultra HD (4Kx2K) compatible, enabling up-scaling to 4K from any source. In terms of audio, the solution provides de-embedding, a microphone input, balanced in/out analog audio, and master volume control directly from the front panel. Finally, the AT-HD-CLSO-612 switcher features an intuitive icon-based OSD in English, Spanish, French, and German and offers flexible TCP/IP, RS-232, and IR control.

Photo Caption: AT-HD-CLSO-612 Multiformat Switcher
Photo Link: www.ingearpr.com/Atlona/Atlona_CLSO61.jpg

AT-HD-M2C HDMI(R) Multichannel to 2-Channel Audio Converter
The Atlona(R) AT-HD-M2C accepts and converts Dolby(R) Digital, Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby TrueHD, DTS Digital Surround(TM), and DTS-HD Master Audio(TM) into a two-channel stereo format that is compatible with displays and legacy devices such as an AV receiver or zone amplifier. The AT-HD-M2C’s multichannel EDID takes the guesswork out of managing audio for each source, with no programming required — just plug and play. A variety of output ports, including S/PDIF, HDMI(R), and analog L/R allow audio to pass to devices that don’t support HDMI, while still passing both audio and video to HDMI displays.

Photo Caption: AT-HD-M2C HDMI(R) Multichannel to 2-Channel Audio Converter
Photo Link: www.ingearpr.com/Atlona/Atlona_AT-HD-M2C.jpg

HDMI(R) and VGA/Audio Transmitters and Receivers With Scaling Capabilities
At ISE 2014, Atlona(R) will also showcase its new HDVS family of HDMI(R) and VGA/Audio transmitters and receivers — the AT-HDVS-TX box, AT-HDVS-TX-WP wall plate switcher/transmitters, and AT-HDVS-RX scaler/receiver with signal transport via HDBaseT(TM). Specifically designed for today’s commercial AV marketplace, these products provide connectivity and control for installed AV systems by enabling the use of both VGA and HDMI sources, in addition to control of connected devices. Both the AT-HDVS-TX and AT-HDVS-TX-WP can be used for simplified switching and control or as input and output devices in larger systems. Equipped with Power over Category cable (PoCc) capabilities, the devices do not require any power source at the wall plate, further simplifying the installation process.

Photo Caption: HDVS Family of HDMI(R) and VGA/Audio Transmitters and Receivers
Photo Link: www.ingearpr.com/Atlona/Atlona_AT-HDVS-TX-WP.jpg

Company Quote:
“As we continue to expand our solutions portfolio, Atlona remains committed to designing innovative products that enable reliable AV signal distribution for both home and enterprise environments. We’re proud to showcase our complete line of distribution products at ISE, which delivers dependable, scalable AV signal routing from source to display while simplifying installation and reducing system complexity and costs.”
– Ilya Khayn, president and CEO, Atlona

PR Link: www.ingearpr.com/Atlona/131211Atlona.doc

# # #

About Atlona(R)
Atlona(R) is a leading provider of innovative, reliable AV and IT connectivity solutions. Since 2003, the company has been designing and engineering award-winning products for a diverse range of residential and commercial AV and IT markets, including education, business, government, entertainment, and healthcare.

Atlona’s products and services enable system designers, integrators, consultants, and installers to simplify installation, minimize maintenance, and maximize the versatility of premier automated control solutions. Atlona’s vision is simple: deliver customer-driven products designed and developed with the features, performance, and reliability that industry leaders demand; and deliver the best value in the industry.

More information about Atlona is available at www.atlona.com.

©2014 Atlona Inc. All rights reserved. Atlona and the Atlona logo are registered trademarks of Atlona Inc. in the U.S. and other countries. All other names and marks are trademarks of their respective holders.

Product prices and availability are subject to change without notice.

Actual products may vary from images shown.

Follow Atlona(R)
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/AtlonaTech
LinkedIn: http://linkd.in/hHl5ko
Twitter: http://twitter.com/Atlona

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Preston Soper Wins Audio System Tech Of The Year Award

Jim Brammer & Preston Soper


Preston Soper was recently honored as Audio System Tech of the Year at the Parnelli Awards in Las Vegas, NV.

Soper, who works with Special Event Services (SES) as lead system tech for the Zac Brown Band, has worked in audio since the early 90s as a driver, live and recording engineer and installation technician with a variety of leading production companies, studios, installers and live venues. In addition to Zac Brown, Preston has toured with the Joel Osteen and Joyce Meyer Ministries, Delirious, Govt Mule, Supertramp, Lynyrd Skynyrd and other leading artists.

Asked how he felt about winning the prestigious Parnelli Award, Preston responded, “Recognition by ones peers is a compliment that is rivaled only by acknowledgment from one’s clients. I deeply appreciate and feel honored to be one of the Parnelli award winners. Throughout my life in audio, I’ve been lucky to work with people who are so inspired, talented, and skilled, that I try to take something from them and carry those lessons forward in my own work. Without those who took the time to share their insights, I wouldn’t have been in a position to be nominated or win this award.”

Preston also had kind words for his colleagues at SES and the Martin Audio MLA system used for Zac Brown: “I would also like to express my gratitude for the guidance of Jim Brammer, Jason Farah, and the SES team during my tenure there that has allowed me to grow as an engineer while designing and deploying audio systems for a broad range of clients. Special Event Services’ commitment to MLA as an early network partner and their continued investment in this leading edge technology has helped us provide well-deployed systems, scalable to the different venue types and events with consistent results at every stop on the ZBB tour.”

For more about Martin Audio, please click to www.martin-audio.com.

Autoscript’s +Winplus+ Software is the Clear-Cut Choice for Precise Prompting

User-Friendly System Provides Flexibility and Resilience in an Intuitive Package

SHELTON, CT, DECEMBER 12, 2013 — For Stacey Torello, owner and operator of Precise Prompting, a full-service teleprompting company, conveying her clients’ messages flawlessly is the key to her company’s success. Whether it’s a live television broadcast, corporate event, film shoot or a taped field piece, Torello relies on Autoscript, part of Vitec Videocom, a Vitec Group company, and a world-leading teleprompting company, and its +WinPlus+ Prompting Software.

Autoscript’s top-notch customer service and ability to trouble-shoot on the fly is another reason that Torello continues to turn to Autoscript for her prompting software needs. Torello, who has extensive experience with game shows, talk shows, political speeches, movies and sporting events, including Showtime’s live boxing coverage, started using Autoscript’s +WinPlus+ in 2009.

“+WinPlus+ is great when it comes to live sporting events like boxing,” says Torello. “With +WinPlus+, I can edit and prompt at the same time, which is a great feature; one that I have not seen in other programs. If I’m in a live situation and a producer needs me to change copy, that producer can be typing while I’m prompting. That’s a huge advantage.”

+WinPlus+ is a Windows-based software package that adds the ease of “point and click” to an intuitive on-screen edit display. It can provide standalone prompting for both presentation and general production, in the studio or on location. With more than 10,000 systems in daily operation around the world, +WinPlus+ is the most widely used prompting application on the market. +WinPlus+ can be interfaced with all the leading electronic newsroom systems. Designed and used by prompting experts, the software offers the ability to control the run order and edit anywhere within the script, even when scrolling the on-air story, leaving the prompt output unaffected. This adds resilience to the overall system.

“Not only is Autoscript’s +WinPlus+ software great; the company’s customer service is excellent as well,” adds Torello. “Whenever I call to speak with my customer service rep, she’s very helpful. She immediately knows what I’m talking about, and if I have an Internet connection she’ll just sign into my computer, go over my system, see what the problem is and immediately fix it. She is yet another reason why Autoscript is my obvious choice for prompting.”

About Autoscript
Autoscript is the world leader in the prompting industry, providing professional teleprompting equipment to broadcasters across the globe. Established in the UK in 1984, with headquarters in the UK and the US, Autoscript designs and builds innovative hardware, PC cards and software to meet real world needs and continually enhance the production process. A prime example of this is Autoscript’s latest product, the E.P.I.C. (Enhanced Prompting Information Centre), an all-in-one prompter display and on-air talent monitor that vastly simplifies studio equipment, reduces power consumption and enables easier location prompting. Autoscript is a member of the Vitec Group.

For more information visit www.autoscript.tv

About Vitec Videocom
Vitec Videocom brings together some of the most respected, most innovative and most sought-after brands in the industry: Anton/Bauer, Autoscript, Camera Corps, Litepanels, OConnor, Petrol Bags, Sachtler, Vinten and Vinten Radamec. It acts as an endorsing brand for these market-leading broadcast, film and pro video products, encouraging multi-brand system sales and simplifying the way that customers worldwide do business.

Vitec Videocom is an operating division within the Vitec Group, an international business serving customers in the broadcast, photographic and military aerospace and government markets. Vitec is based on strong, well known, premium brands on which its customers rely on worldwide.

Vitec Videocom – advancing the quality and science of media production.

HARMAN collaborates with Bangalore International Airport Limited (BIAL) to provide unmatched audio experiences at T1A

BANGALORE, India — HARMAN International India today announced the successful implementation of a new HARMAN IDX Information Delivery System, a truly integrated airport communications system at Bengaluru International Airport in Bangalore, India. The deployment is a part of a comprehensive program by BIAL to deliver world-class facilities and services to its passengers and partners at T1A, which spreads across 1.5 million square feet and has the capacity to handle 20 million passengers/year.

The HARMAN IDX Information Delivery System is especially engineered for meeting the communication challenges in today’s complex public spaces such as airports, rail stations and others. In this case, the airport communications system comprises a software-based IDX system core and operator interface, as well as JBL Professional loudspeakers, CROWN amplification, AKG noise sensing microphones and BSS audio processing.

The system is a fully managed digital notification system that seamlessly combines audio and visual messaging systems with the airport IT LAN and provides operators with an effective interface for managing complex, rapidly-changing travel information including gate information, boarding details and life safety protocol in the unlikely event of emergencies.

The deployment provides the airport with a highly flexible and scalable solution that can support the airport’s current requirements of Terminal 1 and future expansion plans. This is a landmark installation, as it is not only the first HARMAN IDX Information Delivery System installation at an international airport in India, but also the first IDX system deployment in Asia.

“We are pleased to partner with HARMAN in installing a highly capable, robust and mission-oriented situation management platform at the terminal. Through the new system we will raise the bar in providing unmatched world-class audio experience to our passengers at the Bengaluru International Airport. This sets the foundation for an integrated airport communication system that will serve the airport’s needs for years to come” said Mr. G V Sanjay Reddy, Managing Director, BIAL

“The truly integrated airport communication AV system from HARMAN Professional will provide a premium information delivery solution that minimizes traveler stress, and ensures a positive airport experience. We believe this project has set a new benchmark in the global AV industry,” said M. Lakshminarayan, Country Manager and Managing Director, HARMAN International India.

HARMAN IDX is designed and built to exceed professional audio standards, incorporating premium microphones, amplifiers and loudspeakers for the best audio quality available. This IDX system can be found in various leading airport terminals across the United States and project sites across the world, including the recently installed projects at ORTIA International Airport in Johannesburg, South Africa, and Bogota International Airport in Colombia. IDX systems are also suited for Mass Transit facility applications Systems like SuperVia Trens Urbanos in Rio de Jeniero Brazil.

About HARMAN
HARMAN (www.harman.com) designs, manufactures and markets a wide range of audio and infotainment solutions for the automotive, consumer and professional markets – supported by 15 leading brands, including AKG®, Harman Kardon®, Infinity®, JBL®, Lexicon® and Mark Levinson®. The Company is admired by audiophiles across multiple generations and supports leading professional entertainers and the venues where they perform. More than 25 million automobiles on the road today are equipped with HARMAN audio and infotainment systems. HARMAN has a workforce of 14,600 people across the Americas, Europe, and Asia and reported sales of $4.5 billion for the last twelve months ended September 30, 2013.

Masque Sound Makes Triumphant Return to Lincoln Center Theater for New Production of William Shakespeare’s Macbeth

When the curtain rose on William Shakespeare’s Macbeth at Lincoln Center Theater, Masque Sound, a leading theatrical sound reinforcement, installation and design company, was on-hand to provide Sound Designer Mark Bennett and Associate Sound Designer Charles Coes with a custom audio equipment package that would ensure complete and pristine audio surround sound and coverage throughout the venue for the famed scribe’s powerful and dark tragedy.

Macbeth tells the story of the title character and brave Scottish general who receives a prophecy from a trio of witches that one day he will become King of Scotland. Consumed by ambition and spurred to action by his wife, Macbeth murders King Duncan and takes the throne for himself. He is then wracked with guilt and paranoia, and he soon becomes a tyrannical ruler as he is forced to commit more and more murders to protect himself from enmity and suspicion. The bloodbath and consequent civil war swiftly take Macbeth and Lady Macbeth into the realms of arrogance, madness and death. In this new production, Ethan Hawke plays Macbeth opposite Anne-Marie Duff as Lady Macbeth.

Bennett and Coes’ goal in designing the sound was to create a flexible system that was capable of delivering a surround sound experience, while also providing complete coverage for every seat in the large, extreme three-quarter Vivian Beaumont Theater. Since Macbeth is a play, and not a musical, Bennett and Coes wanted to create an environment that was as natural sounding as possible.

“The audio solutions that we were able to come up with in collaborating with Masque Sound were great,” says Bennett. “Masque Sound was always able to find alternative ways to achieve our vision, if they didn’t immediately have the ability to do that with their existing inventory. The quality of the equipment that Masque has provided is consistently excellent.”

The Vivian Beaumont Theater has one of the deepest stages in New York City, rivaled only by The Metropolitan Opera and Radio City Music Hall. As a result, Bennett and Coes were able to create tiers of sound in off-stage areas, giving them the ability and flexibility to pinpoint where they wanted the sound to source from in a very large environment.

Another important component of the sound was O’Brien’s desire to have the supernatural world play a large part in the play. O’Brien wanted the show’s “Three Witches” to be able to use the weather as a force to be reckoned with throughout the piece. In order to move the weather and other sound effects around the theater, Bennett and Coes used a combination of heavy Yamaha DME processing and a variety of Meyer Sound loudspeakers, as well as tapping into the Beaumont’s SIAP system, to create rings of surround throughout the theater.

At the heart of the custom equipment package, provided by Masque Sound, was a Yamaha PM5D digital mixing console with a DSP5D editing side car. According to Coes, “The PM5D gave us the most flexibility. It integrated very well with the Yamaha DME’s, which allowed us to accomplish the very transparent vocal reinforcement that we were shooting for. It also provided for a lot of deep control using the delay matrix.”

Bennett and Coes also utilized a 32-channel playback system to further move the sound fluidly around the surround channels as well as a Meyer Sound Matrix3 Audio Show Control unit. A Meyer Sound-based loudspeaker system was used for vocals including UPA-1P’s coupled with a USW-1P subwoofer, and an array of M1D orchestra and balcony delays. The music system consisted of an array of Meyer Sound UPA-1P’s, USW-1P’s and an additional Meyer 650-P effect subwoofer. For the fills, which were very close to the audience, a passive d&b E-Series array was used.

In deciding on microphone selection, Bennett and Coes began with the idea that they were going to use foot mics throughout with the occasional body mic. As the design progressed, they discovered that by using nearly equal amounts of both, they were able to provide that intimate feel needed for many of the scenes while also aiding in the final transparency of the piece. Masque Sound provided Sennheiser MKH 8040 cardioid microphones and AKG E460 pre amps for the foot mics. Sennheiser SK5012 transmitters and DPA 4061 lavalier elements were used for the body mics.

“We chose the gear we did because conceptually it allows us to work with the music by installing each cue with a variety of splits,” adds Coes. “This really allows us to separate out what the bass is doing, what the percussion is doing, what the mid-range fills are doing, and then where we are placing the solo instruments per cue. With 15 delayed individual foot mics to every speaker in the vocal reinforcement system and each of the RF mics existing in one of 12 zones on the stage, Mixer Marc Salzberg does a great deal of switching of zones, for individual mics, at any given moment to keep everybody in as accurate a zone as possible.”

Masque Sound also worked with the show’s RF Engineer Adam Smolenski to provide frequency coordination for the 20 channels of wireless plus 12 wireless intercoms that are utilized during each performance.

According to Coes, “With more than 1700 lines of code in QLab, around 300 cues taken for content-only and an additional 30-40 taken for reinforcement, there is an incredible intricacy of the musical and playback content of the show. Masque Sound understood the needs of the project and provided us with gear that can deliver night after night with reliability and stability; that is one of the great aspects of working with them.”

Macbeth opened to rave reviews on Thursday, November 21 at the Vivian Beaumont Theater. The limited engagement of Macbeth is scheduled to run through January 12, 2014.

About Masque Sound
Founded in 1936 by a trio of Broadway stagehands, Masque Sound evolved into one of NYC’s most successful theatrical sound reinforcement, installation and design companies specializing in theatrical, house of worship, sporting, corporate, TV broadcast and live concert events. Celebrating more than 75 years in the industry, the company is lead by Geoff Shearing, the firm’s 3rd generation owner, and Vice President and General Manager Stephanie Hansen. The company also operates Florida-based Professional Wireless Systems, a leader in the development and implementation of wireless technology. Credits range from major Broadway shows and tours including “Phantom of the Opera,” “Mamma Mia!,” “Lion King,” “Jersey Boys,” “Memphis,” “The Book of Mormon,” “Newsies,” “Once” and “Kinky Boots” to yearly Super Bowl broadcasts and installations of varying sizes, including New York’s New Victory Theater and historic St. Bartholomew’s Church. Masque Sound’s 70,000 sq. ft. corporate headquarters and main assembly facility is located at 21 East Union Ave., East Rutherford, NJ, 20 minutes from midtown Manhattan. For more information, call (201) 939-8666 or visit www.MasqueSound.com.

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StrandVision Digital Signage Helps Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes Communicate Their Heritage and Values

PABLO, Mont. – Dec. 12, 2013 – StrandVision Digital Signage today announced that the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes (CSKT) are using its Internet-based digital signage system to communicate their heritage and values to CSKT employees, Tribal people and visitors.

CSKT faced a unique communications challenge in finding an innovative, visually interesting way to reach multiple audiences. It selected StrandVision Digital Signage for a display at its headquarters in Pablo, Montana. Since the StrandVision system is hosted in the cloud and requires only minimal onsite digital media player hardware, the CSKT were able to redeploy a surplus computer and 27” display for the initial installation, eliminating out-of-pocket equipment costs. In addition to the display in the lobby, the StrandVision network also broadcasts on the Char-Koosta News public web site for no additional charge.

The StrandVision Digital Signage features regular updates for employees, such as holiday and training schedules, awards and other human resources announcements through text, graphics and video content. Both the in-lobby display and the website digital sign include announcements for Tribal people on the reservation. Notices range from Tribal government news to hunting and fishing dates, healthcare updates, as well as upcoming community events – such as home buying classes, the mission/values statement and local weather, including weather radar that is automatically provided by StrandVision.

Since the CSKT headquarters in Pablo is the focal point for contact with outside constituents, including elected government officials, chambers of commerce, and visitors from around the world, the StrandVision signage also offers an easy way to personally welcome each guest and expose them to CSKT history and values.

“The goal from the start was to make the digital signage an extension of us telling our story. That’s what drew me to StrandVision,” commented Robert McDonald, CSKT communications director. “It’s a powerful tool to help us tell our story in small chapters in a visually interesting way.”

The StrandVision electronic signage network is now poised to be expanded to other locations across the 1.317 million acre – almost double the size of Rhode Island – CSKT Flathead Reservation with local government departments deploying their own implementation of the signage.

“The CSKT are in a perfect position to take advantage of StrandVision’s cloud-based digital signage approach,” said Mike Strand, StrandVision founder and CEO. “Any location with an Internet connection can be connected and show the programming that includes shared content from Pablo mixed in with its own individually created local programming. With both Web and onsite signage presence, the StrandVision network has the potential to reach virtually everyone on the Flathead Reservation.”

About StrandVision
StrandVision LLC, based in Menomonie, Wis., delivers low-cost, Web-based digital signage software through a patented Software as a Service (SaaS) approach that delivers content to subscribers’ flat screen televisions, as well as computer screens, websites and mobile devices. StrandVision’s service distributes text and graphics pages, video content and national and local weather and news. It is ideal for many large and small business marketing applications, including medical and dental offices (patient education); banks, retailers and industrial distributors (video merchandising and operations information display systems); education (student communication, staff and visitor information); employee break rooms (employee communication of events and benefits); nonprofit and religious organizations (member and supporter communication).

StrandVision also offers PC-2-TV.net, a fully digital, high-definition (HD) video extender to connect a computer to a television over long distances for use with digital signage and many other applications. StrandVision Digital Signage services and PC-2-TV.net are available directly from StrandVision and through registered affiliates and system integrators. Additional information about StrandVision Digital Signage is available at StrandVision.com, 715-235-7446 or by email.
###

EDITORS – for further information:

Mike Strand
StrandVision
715-235-7446 X100
mjstrand@strandvision.com

Sandy McLaughlin
Soucy Communications Group
781-898-7305
smclaughlin@scg-pr.com

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