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Archive for May, 2014

Screen Innovations—The World Needs the Best Bigger

Austin, TX—May 22, 2014—Screen Innovations (SI) has enlarged Black Diamond™, the world’s most popular ambient-light-rejecting screen and the ideal choice for commercial integrators who need Black Diamond™ quality in a larger format. The largest Black Diamond™ screens to date feature 1.4 gain in new sizes: 16:9 120” and 2.35:1 150”, in Fixed and Zero Edge formats. The larger Black Diamond screens, as well as other recently designed additions to the SI family, continue to make SI the fastest growing screen company in the world.

Black Diamond, the world’s only vertical and horizontal ambient-light-rejecting screen, has a multi layer optic that reflects only the light generated by the projector resulting in a 900% boost in contrast. Additionally, Black Diamond is the only screen that greatly benefits dark environments by reducing light scatter by over 75%. The result is the richest, sharpest image, with the best blacks now available from a screen.

Ryan Gustafson, President of Screen Innovations, boldly announced, “At SI, we believe innovation means that a design is never complete, just more perfect with each iteration. He continued, “We are excited to announce that plans are underway to invest in and expand our production capability to better support today’s large display needs. Our customers asked, and we delivered.”

All Black Diamond screens feature active 3D capabilities and are future-proofed and 4K ready. Screen sizes start at 80” fixed, curved, motorized, and popular Zero Edge formats.

Screen Innovations will exhibit at InfoComm June 18-20, 2014, in Booth #419 in the North Hall. Stop by to see the next generation of video projection screens demonstrated with projectors from our partners, DPI, Epson, and Vivitek.

Manufacturers Suggested Retail Pricing: Starts at USD $2,199.00
Availability: May 2014

Screen Innovations makes it easy to choose the right screen for each application, based on lighting, room size, seating distance, and more. Visit www.screeninnovations.com to check out the Screen Calculator, Screen Wizard, and Projector Wizard online tools.

About Screen Innovations
Based in Austin, Texas, Screen Innovations is a leading manufacturer of projection screens and associated technologies for residential and commercial applications. Best known for Black Diamond™, the world’s first and only multi-directional ambient-light-rejection projection screen technology, SI has effectively revolutionized the two-piece projection category by pioneering and producing screens that deliver an unparalleled video image in light or dark environments. Sold at affordable price points and designed to blend flawlessly with surrounding décor, SI projection screens deliver stunning images and a fully immersive entertainment experience that rivals or surpasses traditional displays. Operating under the principle of “No matter the budget, Screen Innovations has the best available screen solution to suit your needs.” SI produces a comprehensive assortment of screens and accessories for nearly any budget or application.

Visit www.screeninnovations.com or call 512-832-6939. Follow us on Facebook @screeninnovations and on Twitter @SIScreens.

HARMAN Professional Opens New Technology Center In Salt Lake City, Utah

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – HARMAN Professional today announced the opening of its Technology Center in Salt Lake City, Utah. The 50,000-square-foot facility employs 165 and houses the company’s Signal Processing Business Unit Professional Systems Development and Integration Group, responsible for the development of HiQnet™ networking software, Corporate Technology Group, and the HARMAN Professional Training Center. The facility is located at the foot of the Wasatch Mountains in the high-tech South Jordan RiverPark area of Salt Lake City.

“By bringing our resources and our talented engineering, design and research staff under one roof we have created a world-class facility that will enable us to be more efficient in all elements of our day-to-day operations than ever before,” said T.J. Smith, General Manager, HARMAN Professional Signal Processing Business Unit.

HARMAN Professional’s Signal Processing Unit develops and supports professional audio products used by musicians, studios, houses of worship, theaters and large venues such as stadiums, arenas and convention centers. Their iconic brands include Lexicon, dbx, BSS Audio and DigiTech. The technology developed at HARMAN Signal Processing is also used in larger audio systems applications for other HARMAN brands JBL Professional, Crown Audio, Soundcraft, and Studer.

HARMAN’s Corporate Technology Group leads the company’s cutting-edge research efforts and the development of HARMAN International products and technologies. The HARMAN Signal Processing Business Unit is responsible for product engineering, development, sales, marketing and administration of the DigiTech, Lexicon Pro, dbx and BSS Audio brands.

The HARMAN Professional Training Center was created to train audio professionals in the use of the company’s products and HiQNet audio system control software. The Center includes four studios/sound rooms, provides in-depth, instructor-led training and also provides the opportunity for professional certification for HARMAN products and systems.

“HARMAN Professional is evolving to meet the changing needs of our customers worldwide,” said John Fitzgerald, Vice President and General Manager, HARMAN Amplifier and Signal Processing Business Units. “This facility underscores our commitment to investing in our employees and providing them with the resources to build, service and support the best professional audio products available.”

HARMAN (www.harman.com) designs, manufactures, and markets a wide range of infotainment and audio solutions for the automotive, consumer, and professional markets. It is a recognized world leader across its customer segments with premium brands including AKG®, Harman Kardon®, Infinity®, JBL®, Lexicon®, and Mark Levinson® and leading-edge connectivity, safety and audio technologies. 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 15,200 people across the Americas, Europe, and Asia and reported sales of $5.1 billion for the last twelve months ended March 31, 2014.

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The Pixies Tour the World with HARMAN’s Martin Professional Lighting

BOSTON, Massachusetts — Legendary alternative rock band The Pixies have made quite the comeback after their revival 10 years ago, and are now on a worldwide tour with a full lighting rig from HARMAN’s Martin Professional.

Full service lighting, sound and rigging rental company based in New York, See Factor, worked with Myles Mangino, Lighting Designer for The Pixies, to create a rig featuring 15 MAC Viper Profiles, 12 MAC Auras, four RUSH MH3s and three Jem K1 Hazers.

The Pixies, who recently stopped at the renowned Coachella Music Festival after their reunion tour began nearly 10 years ago, needed a versatile lighting solution designed for different venues, stages and festivals.

“The real challenge was to have a show that could be as closely as possible duplicated in markets across the world,” stated Mangino. “Having a kit that was small enough to fit in a container, and also using fixtures that could be sourced in different markets was paramount.”

The upstage truss has 8-foot tail down bars for the MAC Vipers that went over the back screen. “The second we saw the Viper fixture we were impressed with its capabilities,” said Alban Sardzinski, See Factor. “It’s a compact light with a large zoom and high output which really helps Myles due to the fact that he can position it super close while still be effective. The first time we tried it at New York’s Bowery Ballroom and we only had a few feet behind his screen but it worked perfectly!”

“The Viper is currently my favorite fixture,” said Mangino. “The optics are wonderful and the speed of the zoom is unmatched. For a show like the Pixies, I run everything live, off temp faders. There are no cues or chases running so the responsiveness is critical for me. The Martin fixtures pan, tilt and the wheels seem to respond to manual movements with faders better than anything else I’ve tried.”

At first, Mangino was skeptical of the RUSH MH3s, but after just one show they were part of the rig. “I love the colors! They all match and we more or less use them as the bands key light by reflecting them off the mirrored domes above the stage.”

“The Auras, in my opinion, are the most essential element,” mentioned Sardzinski. “I knew Mangino had used them prior to the Pixies and they would fit in perfectly with the rest of the rig. I love the look of the beam and the colors they create. They are perfect for the backlight effect we were going for.”

“When the tour first launched we weren’t using Martin hazers,” Sardzinksi continued, “but they were so loud and obnoxious that we swapped them out for the K1s and we couldn’t be happier.”

“We’re proud to work with Mangino and with Martin,” said Sardzinski. “We’ve always found Martin to have very durable fixtures and whenever we have them out there we know we’ll have a perfect show, every time!”

Photo Credit: Robert Fuller

For more information on See Factor, please visit: www.seefactor.com

As a world leader in the creation of dynamic lighting solutions for the entertainment, architectural, and commercial sectors, Martin lighting and video systems are renowned the world over. Martin also offers a range of advanced lighting controllers and media servers, as well as a complete line of smoke machines as a complement to intelligent lighting. Martin operates the industry’s most complete and capable distributor network with local partners in nearly 100 countries. Founded in 1987 and based in Aarhus, Denmark, Martin is the lighting division of global infotainment and audio company HARMAN International Industries. For more information please visit: http://www.martin.com.

HARMAN (www.harman.com) designs, manufactures, and markets a wide range of infotainment and audio solutions for the automotive, consumer, and professional markets. It is a recognized world leader across its customer segments with premium brands including AKG®, Harman Kardon®, Infinity®, JBL®, Lexicon®, and Mark Levinson® and leading-edge connectivity, safety and audio technologies. 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 15,200 people across the Americas, Europe, and Asia and reported sales of $5.1 billion for the last twelve months ended March 31, 2014.

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Hisense H6 55” SMART TV With Android 4.2.2 Now Available at Walmart

Suwanee, GA – May 22, 2014 — Hisense today announced the immediate availability of the new H6 SMART TV powered by Android™ 4.2.2 for under $700 at select Walmart stores nationwide. The 55-inch H6 features a stunning, intuitive new user interface and comes with an incredibly simplified Merlin™ remote control air mouse.

“Today, by coupling Hisense’s television expertise with Walmart’s immense retail reach, we are delivering a truly smart TV at a highly accessible price point,” said Jonathan Frank, Vice President of Marketing, Hisense USA. “We are proud to bring Android TV to the North American market with the Hisense H6 and look forward to working with our various partners to advance the viewer experience of consumers everywhere.”

The H6 comes with the Hisense Social TV™ App and Hisense Cloud Services Hi-Media™ Player and Receiver for sharing and storing all of your favorite videos and photos. It features a 120Hz refresh rate and is Energy Star 6.0 qualified. The H6 remote comes with just 30 keys, a built-in air mouse with IQQI Smart Input and voice search with a built-in microphone.

The SMART functionality of the H6 brings Vudu HD Movies, Netflix, Amazon Instant Video, Chrome™, YouTube™, Google Play™, Google Voice Search™, and PrimeTime applications into your living room. The Android-based TV v4 Media Streaming, multiple HDMI-In/Out, WiFi, Ethernet, Bluetooth and USB ensures that the consumer is never without content.

Android, Google Play, Google and other marks are trademarks of Google Inc.

For more information please visit: www.hisense-usa.com. You can also find us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/HisenseUSA or follow us on Twitter and Instagram @Hisense_USA.

About Hisense USA Corporation
Established in 2001, Hisense USA Corporation is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Hisense Company Ltd., headquartered in Qingdao, China.

Hisense USA offers a broad range of technology driven consumer electronics products that are manufactured and distributed across North American, including televisions, refrigerators, air-conditioners, dehumidifiers, beverage coolers and freezers. Hisense USA sells into national retailers across North America, including Walmart, Sams.com, Costco, P.C. Richards, Canadian Tire and more. The Company has established R&D centers in Atlanta, Georgia and San Jose, California to enable localized product development and innovation.

Hisense Company Ltd. has production facilities in China, South Africa, Algeria, Egypt as well as Mexico and is one of the largest television manufacturers in the world with over 10 million televisions produced per year. The Company has sales offices in North America, Europe, Australia, South Africa, the Middle East and Asia while exporting products to over 130 countries and regions throughout the world.

Platinum Tools® Features New EZ-RJPRO™ Termination Pod at InfoComm 2014

CAMARILLO, Calif., May 22, 2014 – Platinum Tools(R) (www.platinumtools.com), the leader in solutions for the preparation, installation and hand termination of wire and cable, is proud to announce it will feature the new EZ-RJPRO™ Termination Pod, a complete turnkey field kit (P/N 90173), at InfoComm 2014, June 18-20 at the Las Vegas Convention Center, booths C5238 & N368j. Now shipping, the EZ-RJPRO Termination Pod has an MSRP of $279.00.

“Our new EZ-RJPRO Termination Pod is designed for the professional installer providing everything he needs for consistent, repeatable terminations and overall quicker and easier installations,” explained John Phillips, Platinum Tools, Inc. product manager. “This heavy duty kit is the perfect solution when working with both delicate as well as high performance, larger OD cables that are tougher to terminate due to larger wire gauges, thicker, harder insulation on the conductors and pair separating splines. Not only will you overcome these connectivity obstacles but you can be assured that every termination will meet FCC specifications.”

The “EZ” crimp & trim, modular plug termination kit Includes:
• EZ-RJPRO HD Crimp Tool – P/N 100054
• Cat5e/6 Cable Jacket Stripper – P/N 15015
• Electrician’s Scissors – P/N 10517
• EZ-RJ45® Cat5e connectors (100 each) – P/N 105003
• EZ-RJ45® Cat6 connectors(100 each) – P/N 105004
• EZ-RJ12/11 connectors(50 each) – P/N 105005

EZ-RJPRO HD Crimp Tool – P/N 100054
The EZ-RJPRO HD Crimp Tool uses the EZRJ45® patented ‘crimp & trim’ system and is designed to handle larger dimensional size cables. Compatible with all EZ-RJ45® and EZ-RJ12/11 connectors as well as all standard modular plugs, except AMP.

Cat5e/6 Cable Jacket Stripper – P/N 15015
This economical tool has been specifically designed to strip the cable jackets from Category 5, 5e and Category 6 twisted pair cables. No adjustments are required and will not nick the inner conductors. Durable high impact plastic housing is molded from yellow plastic to make it easier to locate. Long life blade.

Electrician’s Scissors – P/N 10517
Our Scissor-Run Scissors are an original favorite. This smooth cutting action, scissor-run design, is excellent for cutting Kevlar®, foil, and wire. Cuts wire up to 16 AWG solid, 12 AWG stranded, and will strip 19 AWG and 23 AWG. Includes full serrated bottom blade for non-slip cutting; through hardened, high carbon steel for edge retention; double plated chrome over nickel; easily re-sharpens and holds cutting edge; scraper and file on backside of blades.

EZ-RJ45® Cat5e connectors (100 each) – P/N 105003
The patented EZ-RJ45® Connector simplifies twisted pair terminations by allowing the wires to be inserted through the connector and out the front. This allows the technician to easily verify the proper wiring order. Electrical performance of the termination is optimized by pulling the connector down over the cable jacket and seating it tightly in the rear of the connector. Made in the USA. Patented.

EZ-RJ45® Cat6 connectors (100 each) – P/N 105004
The new patented EZ-RJ45 Cat 6+ Connector simplifies twisted pair terminations by allowing the wires to be inserted through the connector and out the front. This allows the technician to easily verify the proper wiring order. Electrical performance of the termination is optimized by pulling the connector down over the cable jacket and seating it tightly in the rear of the connector. Made in the USA. Patented.

EZ-RJ12/11® connectors (50 each) – P/N 105005
The new, patented EZ-RJ12/11 Connector simplifies twisted pair terminations by allowing the wires to be inserted through the connector and out the front. This allows the technician to easily verify the proper wiring order prior to termination. Use the EZ-RJPRO HD™ Crimp Tool (P/N 100054) for single cycle crimping and trimming of the excess wire. FCC compliant and UL rated. Made in the USA. Patented.

For more information on Platinum Tools and its complete product line, please visit www.platinumtools.com, call (800) 749-5783, or email info@platinumtools.com.

About Platinum Tools
Platinum Tools, founded in 1997, was created based upon two very simple objectives. First, develop the absolute best possible solutions for the preparation, installation, and hand termination of wire and cable. Second, implement an operational infrastructure that can deliver these products in an efficient, timely, and high quality manner.

All of our products must absolutely satisfy three critical benchmark criteria…utility of function; quality of function; and economic value. Our people are our company. They, too, must be focused on and work to satisfy three critical benchmark criteria…customer satisfaction; product knowledge and expertise; and willingness to learn and adapt.

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Zylight to Exhibit Product Range at Cine Gear and Lightfair International

LOS ANGELES – Zylight, a leading manufacturer of innovative LED lighting solutions, will showcase its wares at next month’s Cine Gear Expo in Hollywood and Lightfair International in Las Vegas. Zylight’s instruments will be displayed within their North American distributor, Ushio America’s, booth at both exhibitions. Among the Zylight offerings on hand will be the F8 LED Fresnel, palm-sized Z90 LED and IS3c LED lights.

Ushio will be in booth #S310 at Cine Gear and booth #5124 at Lightfair International.

Cine Gear occurs from June 5-8th at The Studios at Paramount in Hollywood. In its 18th year, it is the premier film, video, and digital media expo for the entertainment industry.

Gear Expo attracts specialists from every major department of the entertainment production and the post production world.

Held from June 3-5 at the Las Vegas Convention Center, Lightfair International is the the world’s largest annual architectural and commercial lighting trade show and conference. Lightfair International is co-owned by the International Association of Lighting Designers (IALD, www.iald.org) and the Illuminating Engineering Society (IES, www.ies.org). The event is co-owned, produced and managed by AMC, Inc. (www.americasmart.com).

F8 LED Fresnel

Recently updated, Zylight’s F8 LED Fresnel delivers close to the light output of a traditional 1000-watt Fresnel and collapses to less than four inches thick for easy transport. A number of refinements deliver improved performance for field and studio applications. The yoke mount has been angled for greater positioning range and can accommodate 90-degree stand mounting. All locking and adjustment can be done with a single knob. The light’s self-locking focus automatically holds focus position. Other improvements include: improved bellows design for smoother operation, a self-terminating DMX input, better protection from the elements, and a new heat sink orientation that allows 20 percent better cooling.

“We’ve been blown away by the response to this light. Commercial and TV show producers as well as independent filmmakers are embracing our LED Fresnel,” said Joe Arnao, president of Zylight. “We went back to the drawing board a few months ago to make the F8 even better, without changing the features that make it the most exciting lighting instrument on the market.”

Z90

The palm-sized Z90 LED provides the flexibility of variable color temperature and access to any color of the rainbow at the touch of a button – without gels or filters. It can instantly switch between fully calibrated Daylight and Tungsten, with no color shift while dimming. An adjustable 2500K-9000K color temperature and variable ±GREEN color correction enable smooth on-location lighting adjustments. Built-in controls and digital display make set-up fast, with user-defined presets for storing frequently used settings. The light’s built-in color mode provides immediate access to millions of colors. The Z90’s HD-led™ module is the brightest available anywhere. And its 130° spread ensures that one Z90 will do the job of two or more inferior bulb-type LED lights.

IS3c

The IS3c combines Zylight’s color-mixing technology and high-quality construction to meet the needs of location and studio professionals who require an extremely bright and wide soft source, while offering all of the innovative features for which Zylight is known: fully dimmable with minimal color shift, adjustable color temperature and color correction, unlimited color control, and rugged construction for years of reliable service.

The IS3c’s advanced four-color mixing ensures excellent skin tones and rich, accurate color rendition. And the IS3c’s wide 90° spread means the IS3c can shoot with wide angle lenses or in 16×9 format.

Integrated ZyLink™ wireless control

Each of the lights are equipped with Zylink wireless control technology that allows the operator to wirelessly link multiple Zylights to create a soft LED source as large as necessary. Zylights that are linked act in concert as if they were one unified LED source, with adjustments made on one light changing all lights in the group. Lights can be controlled wirelessly or from another light from up to 60′ away.

ABOUT ZYLIGHT LLC

Founded in 2003, Zylight LLC is the leading manufacturer of intelligent LED lighting instruments for the film and video production industry. Every model in its easy-to-use lighting system produces fully calibrated bright white light, while some also provide a spectrum of adjustable colors without gels. Full wireless control and DMX integration are included, and AC or DC power options are available. The Zylight state-of-the-art LED system is truly the most unique and flexible lighting system on the market today. With more than 50 dealers worldwide, Zylight continues to develop innovative LED lighting solutions to help make your job easier. More Than Bright – Zylight. Find out more at www.zylight.com.

ABOUT USHIO AMERICA, INC.

USHIO America, Inc. is a leading manufacturer of Specialty and General Illumination lighting solutions based in Cypress, California. Established in 1967 as a subsidiary of USHIO Inc, in Tokyo, Japan, USHIO now carries over 3,500 lighting related products. These Lighting-Edge Technologies™ are provided to a variety of industries such as general illumination, audio-visual, photographic, stage, studio and television, semiconductor, printed circuit, video projection, cinema, UV curing, germicidal, horticulture, graphic arts, flashlight, scientific, medical, dental, ophthalmic, infra-red heating, and many others. For further information, visit www.USHIO.com.

Renowned Audio Engineer Dave Natale Finds the Right Reverb With HARMAN’s Lexicon PCM Native Reverb Plug-In Bundle

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – As one of the top audio engineers in the business, Dave Natale has been the front-of-house engineer for a who’s who of artists, including Yes, Olivia Newton-John, Tina Turner, Joe Cocker, Lionel Richie and many more. He currently mixes shows for The Rolling Stones, but when he’s not on the road you can find him at Right Coast Recording, which he established in 1990. One of the factors that’s made it one of the oldest and well-equipped recording studios in central Pennsylvania is Natale’s commitment to making sure that nothing goes into Right Coast unless it sounds right. The most recent component to pass Natale’s rigorous test is HARMAN’s Lexicon PCM Native Reverb Plug-In Bundle, which he recently selected as his reverb software.

“I’ve relied on Lexicon since my days in the early 1980s working for Clair Brothers Audio on a Yes, Tour” said Natale. “We must have been one of the first sound companies to use the Lexicon 224, Lexicon’s first digital reverb that became an industry classic. I memorized the manual.”

Since then, Natale has gone from the 224 to other equally revered Lexicon hardware offerings, such as the 200, 480L and the PCM80, 81, 90 and 91, which he still uses today on tour with The Rolling Stones with Clair Global.

Natale is impressed with Lexicon’s move from hardware to software-based reverb processing. “To my ears, because of the quality and consistency of their algorithms and the sounds they’ve delivered, they’ve made the leap with complete success,” he said.

Natale’s appreciation of the Lexicon components is based on his in-depth understanding of the complexity of reverb. “I think what impresses me the most about Lexicon is the fact that reverb is the hardest thing to model and get to sound right,” he said. “There are too many parameters. When you think about how complex real-life reverb is, with all its variables and decay characteristics, you start to realize how hard it is to make really great-sounding reverb units.”

Needless to say Natale had high expectations when he decided he needed to hear the Lexicon PCM Native Reverb Plug-In Bundle. He said that while there’s nothing like the sound of Lexicon hardware processors, it’s hard to beat the convenience of software plug-ins. “Now that I’ve had a chance to work with the PCM Native Reverb Plug-In Bundle I can tell you that it’s equally impressive and I’m hearing the same quality as I’m used to from the hardware,” he said. “We have been using a 224 and a PCM 70 at Right Coast and I’ve worked with many other Lexicon processors, and the Plug-In Bundle absolutely meets the level of quality I’m looking for.”

Bobby Gentilo, engineer at Right Coast Recording and manager of the studio’s day-to-day operations also considers Lexicon an essential sonic tool. “I trust Lexicon,” he said. “The reverb we’ve always relied on in the hardware has translated nicely to the software in recent years. We work with a variety of artists including some with very critical ears who aren’t shy about telling you what they do and do not like. Lexicon reverbs always pass the test with our clients.”

“Dave is not only one of the most talented audio engineers out there today, he is also one of the great people in our industry,” stated Jason Kunz, Market Manager, Portable PA and Recording & Broadcast for HARMAN Signal Processing. “ It’s a great feeling to knowing that whether he is out on the road with some of the biggest names in music or in his own studio, Lexicon is an integral part of his work.”

HARMAN (www.harman.com) designs, manufactures, and markets a wide range of infotainment and audio solutions for the automotive, consumer, and professional markets. It is a recognized world leader across its customer segments with premium brands including AKG®, Harman Kardon®, Infinity®, JBL®, Lexicon®, and Mark Levinson® and leading-edge connectivity, safety and audio technologies. 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 15,200 people across the Americas, Europe, and Asia and reported sales of $5.1 billion for the last twelve months ended March 31, 2014.

New 3D Show Presentation System Designed by Electrosonic Marks 700th Anniversary of Scotland’s Iconic Battle of Bannockburn

In the lead up to the 700th anniversary of Scotland’s Battle of Bannockburn, a new visitor centre at the historic site in Stirling has become the first in the world to use fight choreography and motion capture techniques to immerse visitors in a realistic 3D medieval battle. The complex projection system was designed by Electrosonic’s Design Consulting team and engineered and installed by Electrosonic’s Edinburgh office under sub-contract to lead design consultancy Bright White Ltd.

The Battle of Bannockburn in 1314 was one of the most decisive battles of the First War of Scottish Independence and an iconic cornerstone in Scottish history. It pitted King Robert the Bruce of Scotland against the English King Edward II and resulted in a complete Scottish victory. The National Trust for Scotland’s new Battle of Bannockburn Visitor Centre opened on 1 March 2014, transporting visitors back in time to the 1314 battle and has been an instant success.

Electrosonic was called in at the early stage of the design process to give advice on the most suitable technology to fit the space and budget and most importantly to verify that the technology could achieve the design ideas.

3D Show Presentations Highlight Battle Start to Finish

Electrosonic and Bright White Ltd. partnered to design and engineer the centre’s fully automatic life-size 3D show presentation systems. They begin with the Prologue’s puppet theater-style 3D presentation, which introduces visitors to some of the main characters and circumstances leading up to the battle. Next, four large screens in the Prepare for Battle exhibition use Panasonic projectors to present a continuous sequence of spectacular, life-size 3D images.

Visitors are placed right in the middle of the action. Standing shoulder-to-shoulder with warriors and weapons, visitors not only learn about the medieval battle but really experience the emotions of war as they duck longbow arrows shot across the space.

Behind two of the screens are five Character Stations showing ten historical or generic fictional characters who played a part in the battle. Each Character Station uses two narrow-bezel 46-inch NEC LCDs to produce a life-size 2D animated portrait that comes to life when the visitor stands in front and gestures.

The films shown in Prepare for Battle and in the Character Stations were developed by 3D modelers at the Centre for Digital Documentation and Visualisation (CDDV), a partnership between the Glasgow School of Art’s Digital Design Studio and Historic Scotland, under contract to Bright White Ltd. Although the films were computer generated, all live action was based on real people using both laser scan and motion capture techniques and authenticated using an Academic Panel featuring some of the UK’s top historians.

Battle Room

A circular space houses the signature Battle Room. Visitors can choose to watch a 10-minute Battle Show or they can play or observe a 40-minute Battle Game, in which advanced booking is necessary for participation.

Visitors enter the Battle Room at an upper level so they can look down on the battle map. Game participants who have entered the space at floor level take command of the knights and soldiers competing on the virtual battlefield. Up to 30 visitors can play the game, which is controlled by the Battlemaster who also offers visitors advice. The Battlemaster operates a twin Winsonic touch screen console. The interactive elements of the game allow visitors to make ‘battle decisions’ that will affect an entire army, an experience that they will not forget.

A massive 3D map of the Stirling landscape gives a bird’s-eye view of the battle. The Battle Game is based on a relief representation of the terrain, onto which two projectiondesign projectors map terrain details and all the troop movements in a 2.5D technique that mimics a three-dimensional display.

At the conclusion of the game, visitors finish their tour with the Epilogue show, which follows the same format as the Prologue and is equipped with Panasonic projectors for 3D projection and a 7thSense Delta Duo media server.

Quality Installation, AV and Control Systems

“There are very few companies who have the technical expertise and experience to be able to design, install and maintain such a sophisticated and immersive audio visual experience that involves synchronised systems,” commented Tom Ingrey-Counter, Interpretation Sub-Project Manager for the visitor centre. “For the National Trust of Scotland this has been a very adventurous project and we’ve really relied on the expertise of Electrosonic to deliver it and I testify to the quality of the service provided.”

Each projection screen for 3D images is equipped with two projectors with appropriate filters. The screens themselves are part of the exhibition structure painted with a special Ultra Silver 3D Goo paint to preserve linear polarization.

All 3D images are sourced from dedicated twin-channel 7thSense Delta Duo media servers providing uncompressed image storage. The four main show servers are synchronized. Other interactive exhibits use high-specification DVS computers with appropriate graphics outputs. The Battle Game uses two DVS Hydra 3 computers to provide real-time graphic images; another computer runs the game and supports the twin touch screen display used by the Battlemaster.

To ensure the continual and reliable operation of the Battle Game, Electrosonic installed dual PCs in a redundant configuration of primary and secondary. The PCs run the Battlemaster control and feed graphics to the projectors; the Battlemaster can switch between them within seconds at a touch of a button from the console and continue the game without disturbing customers should anything happen.

While the visitor centre visuals are impressive in their own right, audio also plays an important part in the overall experience. The main show uses a 7.1 multi-channel surround sound system with Tannoy speakers and T&TM amps. The Character Stations have 10 highly directional Panphonics Sound Shower overhead loudspeakers. Mood images surrounding the Battle Game space also have 7.1 multi-channel surround sound.

All equipment have a network connection for control and monitoring, and overall system control is by a standard AMX room control system. A wireless AMX touch panel allows for remote control anywhere within the exhibition.

The source and control equipment are rack mounted in a central control room. The installation follows Electrosonic’s preferred practice for sites of this kind with all site cabling terminated in suitable socket boxes. This allows all site cables to be properly terminated and tested in advance. The racks were factory built at Electrosonic’s Dartford office and arrived on site with cable and plug assemblies that plugged into the waiting sockets. This minimized installation time and provided a more reliable and maintainable system.

“The quality of Electrosonic’s technical design for resilient systems is excellent, and is a key aspect of the project; no matter how creative the team is, if the system doesn’t enjoy 99%+ uptime, then all is lost,” commented Chris Walker, MD of Bright White Ltd. “Electrosonic worked admirably with the designers, the operators and Bright White’s media contractors to provide one of the most intelligent and advanced AV systems we are aware of in the museums sector.”

About Electrosonic
Electrosonic, celebrating its 50th anniversary, is an international audio-visual company that creates tailored, state-of-the-art solutions for a wide range of markets including theme parks, museums, control rooms, and corporate meeting rooms. Since its founding in 1964, Electrosonic has built a strong reputation for working on complex projects, both large and small, and has developed lasting partnerships with customers and suppliers. Beyond complete integrated systems, Electrosonic provides a comprehensive scope of services including technical design, projector lamp sales, maintenance and operational support.

Learn more about Electrosonic. Visit http://www.electrosonic.com

About the Battle of Bannockburn Visitor Centre
A new look for 2014: The National Trust for Scotland’s Battle of Bannockburn Visitor Centre opened on 1 March 2014 in time for the 700th anniversary of the battle this year. An innovative new visitor centre and sensitive landscaping are changing the way that visitors experience Bannockburn, making it a truly world-class site for this defining moment in Scotland’s history.

The new Battle of Bannockburn Visitor Centre uses state of the art installations to interpret and explain the circumstances that led up to this pivotal event in our history and its consequences. The Scottish Government has committed £5 million through Historic Scotland, and £4.1 million has been awarded by the Heritage Lottery Fund.

The design team include:
• Architectural Team – Reiach and Hall with Sinclair Knight Merz (Engineer), Turner and Townsend (QS) and KJ Tait (M&E Engineers)
• Interpretation: Concept and Design – Bright White Ltd
• Landscape Architects – Ian White Associates
• 3D Media Research, Development and Realisation – Centre for Digital Documentation and Visualisation (CDDV)

Find out more at www.battleofbannockurn.com

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Tracy Named To New Post in Middle Atlantic Growth Strategy

Fairfield, NJ––Mark Tracy has been appointed to the newly created role of Vice President Strategic Business and Market Development for Middle Atlantic Products and the Commercial AV division of Legrand North America. Led by the Middle Atlantic brand, Legrand Commercial AV offers foundational infrastructure products to installing contractors, including Wiremold wire and cable management solutions and C2G cable assemblies.

Part of an aggressive growth strategy for the company, this and related moves are intended to provide customers with the widest range of products and new technologies to improve system reliability and facilitate installations, and maintain the exceptional level of quality and support for which Middle Atlantic is known.

Working closely with company president Mike Baker, Tracy will be responsible for supporting growth for Middle Atlantic and Legrand Commercial AV through the addition of new products, businesses and the development of new market applications and channels.

Tracy will also represent Middle Atlantic and Legrand Commercial AV in key industry groups and work to evolve the company’s value proposition to an ever-expanding customer base to build complementary business alliances and identify, facilitate and integrate strategic acquisitions.

In a simultaneous move, Tim Troast has been appointed to the position of Director of Product Management for Middle Atlantic in charge of New Product Development and Product Line Management.

Commenting on the new appointments, Baker said, “Mark’s extensive product and market knowledge, 20 years of building relationships within the AV community and grasp of today’s technology perfectly position him to help us in developing a successful overall strategy to grow our business.

“We are excited to welcome Tim to the Director of Product Management position. He has demonstrated a passion for our customers and business and a willingness to jump in and make a difference.”

Troast joined Middle Atlantic in 2013 after spending 13 years at Pitney Bowes holding various sales and marketing positions, combining formal education and on the job experience in marketing and product line management. Baker noted, “Tim has the necessary tools to help us develop the next chapter in our history. With a customer-centric approach, he will leverage internal resources to develop innovative solutions that solve real world problems for our integrators today and for tomorrow.

“These moves confirm that growth continues to be a priority since Middle Atlantic’s acquisition by Legrand in 2011. Our goal is simple. We want to use every opportunity possible to ensure our customers have the very best products, services and support they need to be successful in today’s highly competitive marketplace.”

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

Multi Image Group Upgrades to HARMAN’s JBL VTX Line Arrays and Crown I-Tech HD Amplifiers

Andy Kakas (left) and Edward Gonzalez (right).

BOCA RATON, Florida – Multi Image Group (MIG) is a full-service corporate communications company with resources to produce events worldwide. MIG supplies complete sound, lighting, video projection, digital signage, set design and technology for events ranging from 50-person sales meetings to 50,000-seat stadium concerts. The Boca Raton-based company employs 150 people and prides itself on providing its clients with nothing less than the very best—to that end, the company recently upgraded its audio system inventory with HARMAN JBL VTX Series line array loudspeakers and Crown I-Tech HD amplifiers.

Multi Image Group has been a HARMAN Professional dealer and user for nine years. “I’ve always been a fan of JBL and have used their loudspeakers since 1981,” said MIG Audio Department Manager Andy Kakas. “I’ve been blown away by their VERTEC® line arrays, especially the way they maintain a stable sonic image in a variety of situations. I really wanted to put the newer VTX line arrays through their paces because in my experience JBL loudspeaker systems just keep getting better.”

Kakas’ interest dovetailed with Multi Image Group’s need to acquire another loudspeaker system for arena events—in the last two years MIG had been doing more and more arena and stadium events along with ballroom and theater productions. Kakas had heard a VTX V25 line array system at an Orlando stadium concert and was impressed by the way it sounded, how easy it was to rig and the way the sonic image stayed intact even from 200 to 250 feet away. Soon after, JBL introduced the smaller V20 loudspeaker and Kakas knew it would be even more adaptable to the type of venues MIG services.

Knowing from his own experience the benefits of upgrading to the I-Tech HD amplifiers, Kakas believed the VTX rig would represent another major step forward. “We weren’t using Crown amplifiers when I joined the company. I didn’t agree with this because I had been using Crown since I started in the professional sound industry back in 1981 and they were always bulletproof.”

However, Kakas first had to convince MIG’s owner. Kakas pointed out that in eight years of owning VERTEC VT4888 line arrays they had almost no driver failures, and had recouped their investment on them in three years. An audition of the V20 at the recent Winter NAMM show sealed the deal: “We heard them and realized, that’s the way a PA should sound.”

Since taking delivery of the JBL VTX V20, MIG’s initial impressions have only been reinforced. “The size of the V20 is perfect for what we do, the loudspeakers sound exceptionally good and the V20 is loud for its size, so in situations where I’d normally have to bring a bigger box, I can stick with the V20,” said Edward Gonzalez, Audio Engineer and System Designer at Multi Image Group. “In a lot of the corporate events we do, I’m fighting height–I have to work around low ceilings in ballrooms, so the smaller size of the V20 is a major advantage.”

Gonzalez, Kakas and the rest of the MIG crew are impressed with every aspect of the V20’s sound, yet single out the newly refined Radiation Boundary Integrator™ (RBI) waveguide, which provides broader, more stable horizontal coverage and a more seamless transition between the high-frequency and midrange drivers. “The new HF driver throws really far and sounds incredibly clean and smooth,” Gonzalez noted. Using the V20 with the Crown I-Tech HD Series amplifiers provides another advantage—the amps’ internal processing is designed to optimize the performance of the V20 (and other JBL models) and enables the crew to carry one less piece of external gear.

“With the I-Tech HDs there is a lot of sonic detail. It has a transparent top end, which has an open and natural sound. It maintains the Crown dampening that gives you that punch in your chest. Also, the Cobranet™ integration is quite useful since we have had a need for multiple channels of AES from front of house to the stage and the amp racks,” added Kakas.

MIG controls its systems with JBL HiQnet Performance Manager™, which Gonzalez helped beta test and finds a major step forward from the previous System Architect. Performance Manager now provides pre-configured control panels instead of having to build them from scratch – a significant time saver. The built-in JBL Line Array Calculator II loudspeaker setup and calibration software is improved to the point where Gonzalez can predict the locations of where the loudspeakers should be set up and get them almost dead-on to their final placements. He also likes Performance Manager’s ability to automatically reconfigure itself. “If the number of amplifiers in the system is changed, I don’t have to manually re-address the locations of the amplifiers on the network,” Gonzalez noted. “I’m excited to mix on something that sounds so good. It’s a very high-fidelity system. It doesn’t sound like a PA—it sounds like a high-end audio system you’d have at home.”

HARMAN (www.harman.com) designs, manufactures, and markets a wide range of infotainment and audio solutions for the automotive, consumer, and professional markets. It is a recognized world leader across its customer segments with premium brands including AKG®, Harman Kardon®, Infinity®, JBL®, Lexicon®, and Mark Levinson® and leading-edge connectivity, safety and audio technologies. 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 15,200 people across the Americas, Europe, and Asia and reported sales of $5.1 billion for the last twelve months ended March 31, 2014.

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