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Archive by Mario Almonte

Christie Signs Patrick Artiaga to Lead New Business Initiatives

20-year veteran of audio / visual / cinema worlds brings a wealth of expertise

Christie®, a world leader in visual technology displays, today announced that Patrick Artiaga has joined Christie Digital Systems USA, Inc. in the new position of director, Business Development, Entertainment Solutions, reporting to Craig Sholder, vice president, Entertainment Solutions, Christie.

Based at Christie Digital Systems USA, Inc.’s headquarters in Cypress, California, Artiaga is joining Christie in a senior capacity, to drive several new product and business initiatives. “Christie’s culture of innovation, dedication to customer service and market leadership, convinced me to join this world leader in the cinema, Pro AV, visualization and simulation markets, and I look forward to contributing to the excellent team that makes up this visionary organization,” said Patrick Artiaga, director, Business Development, Christie.

“Patrick’s global expertise developing and managing comprehensive services and solutions for entertainment companies makes him ideally suited to lead several new developments consistent with Christie’s 80-year history of product innovation and customer excellence,” said Sholder. “His depth of experience working closely with exhibition, distribution, and postproduction will accelerate the introduction of new Christie solutions for these sectors.”

Artiaga joins Christie from ACS Enterprises, Inc. where for seven years as vice president, Sales and Marketing he led business units dedicated to engineering, consulting, and facilities maintenance for the motion picture industry. Prior to ACS Enterprises, Inc., Artiaga spent eight years with Dolby Laboratories, Inc., first as director of Film Marketing and later director, Automotive Marketing. He launched his career with Lucasfilm Ltd., in 1993 where he was manager, Customer Relations for four years.

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Scrabble Entertainment Launches Most Affordable Digital Conversion Leasing Program for Exhibitors in North America

Scrabble Entertainment, an international deployment entity, is excited to announce the immediate roll-out of its affordable lease-to-own digital conversion program. The program to deploy DCI-compliant digital cinema equipment is supported by major Hollywood studios in the form of certain financial contributions pursuant to the terms of each agreement separately reached with each studio. The program does not require any financial pre-qualifications or credit check of any kind. The lease term, with an option to buy the equipment at the end of the lease at no residual value, will be of immense value to all potential exhibitors. Among the Hollywood studios that have signed up so far to separate, non-exclusive agreements are Warner Bros. Pictures, Walt Disney Motion Pictures, Universal Pictures, Paramount Pictures, and 20th Century Fox. Scrabble is also in advanced negotiations with Sony Pictures Releasing Corporation.

“Scrabble Entertainment has enjoyed exceptional success in helping exhibitors convert to digital cinema in several countries, where we are responsible for 100% conversion of multiplexes covered by our programs,” noted Ranjit Thakur, founder and CEO of Scrabble Entertainment, which also recently expanded into South America. “We recognized the extraordinary financial pressures faced by many thousands of independent exhibitors, drive-in theatres, and art house theatres throughout the United States and Canada, which operate under tight budgets and could not easily afford the move to digital cinema technology. Working with preferred equipment suppliers and technical service providers, and with the financial support to be provided by the Hollywood studios under their respective agreements, we developed this flexible, lease-to-own program specifically tailored to accommodate the conversion of such screens to digital projection.”

Scrabble Entertainment has partnered with Christie Digital Systems, USA Inc, not only to supply equipment to the program, but also to include Christie Managed Services, which will provide remote monitoring and comprehensive maintenance, with round-the-clock support through Christie’s Network Operations Center (NOC), along with preventative servicing and on-site emergency response.

“Local theaters are often important cultural and social hubs in their communities, and it is vital that they continue to provide quality entertainment to moviegoers,” said George Scheckel, Director of Business Development for Entertainment Solutions, Christie. “We are very pleased to be selected by Scrabble Entertainment as a preferred supplier of DCI-compliant digital cinema projectors, as well as a provider of technical support through Christie Managed Services. With more than 80 years of experience working with exhibitors of all sizes, we are ready to ensure a seamless move to digital by providing the highest quality equipment and service expertise, throughout the conversion process and for years to come.”

Scrabble is at CinemaCon 2013, Meeting Services Boardroom, Promenade Level (Across from Capri Room), Caesars Palace® Las Vegas.

About Scrabble Entertainment
Scrabble Entertainment is an international deployment entity and India’s only DCI- compliant digital cinema deployment company with VPF contracts with all six major Hollywood studios. The company has successfully been a catalyst in the conversion of several multiplexes and launched major deployment programs in India, the Middle East, Israel and South America. Working in partnership with content and technology providers, projector manufacturers, and other diverse distributors, Scrabble offers a seamless transition to digital cinema technology, providing the entire range of services that include installation, maintenance and training. Scrabble capitalizes on its extensive industry partnerships across all disciplines to offer exhibitors a lower cost-of-entry, with maximum flexibility in lease programs, as well as enhanced revenue streams and playback of alternative content. For more information, log on to
www.ScrabbleEntertainment.com.

Shipments of High-Value Christie Solaria One Projectors to Global Exhibitors Accelerate in 2013

Customers Provide Testimonials of Their Experience with the Christie Solaria One

Shipments of the Christie Solaria One projector, a DCI-compliant solution based on Texas Instruments’ (TI) (NASDAQ: TXN) S2K DLP Cinema® chipset, have accelerated since first units rolled off Christie’s manufacturing plant floors in November 2012. Small-screen theaters in China, Russia, India, Brazil and across Europe and North America are seizing the opportunity to purchase these complete, economical projectors.

“Smaller cinemas the world over are strong contributors to their local economies but they must make the switch to digital format. That said, their loss would also leave a cultural vacuum that is irreplaceable. It is something we simply cannot allow to happen. Our Solaria One projector, our global network of first-rate installation partners and our participation in industry programs to help them finance the change are just some of the ways we’re helping complete the conversion to digital cinema projection,” said Dr. Don Shaw, senior director, product management, Christie Entertainment Solutions.

Christie’s Solaria One has a lot to offer, including being the brightest DCI compliant projector in its class, able to project 8000 lumens in the DCI color space and 9000 for alternative content. And a variation, the Christie Solaria One+, projects 9000 for DCI content and 10,000 with alternative content. As well, it has a customized Xenon lamp, the CDXL-21S1, which ensures ultimate performance, efficiency, and reliability. The projector, which ships “3D ready,” complete with built-in IMB, is easily upgraded to play high frame rate (HFR) movies.

Here, in their own words, are some customers’ experiences. While they serve different regions and cater to varied cinematic tastes, they have all found that the Christie Solaria One is the cost-effective, reliable way for independent exhibitors to transition to digital.

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Testimonials:

“We are very happy to partner with Christie in the roll out of their Solaria One series of projectors in India. This will enable us to take Hollywood content to the far corners of India and expand the market for Hollywood content in India exponentially. This new projector will push the envelope further in providing quality entertainment at affordable prices. The new offering has received a very positive response from the Indian Exhibition Industry, both in regards to quality and pricing.”

Mr. Sanjay Gaikwad, Founder and Managing Director – UFO MOVIEZ INDIA LIMITED.

UFO directly and through its subsidiary Scrabble Entertainment Limited has deployed digital cinema solutions in more than 4400 screens in India.

“When we heard about the new ‘all-in-one’ Christie Solaria One, we realized at once that this was what we needed. On offer was a reliable, all-round projection solution from a proven manufacturer, and it became apparent that it was the most economically attractive option in terms of cost and quality. We installed the Christie Solaria One in each of our three screens, including our 42-seat VIP screen, replacing the old film projector. The first audiences to experience the technology on 24 March 2012 went home impressed with the high picture quality. For us, this is a chance to offer a wider selection of films and give cinemagoers more choice, since studios are increasingly switching from film to digital.”

Alexandr Ryabkin, manager of the KinoFox cinema in Kamensk-Uralsky, Russia – the first three-screen cinema in this city of 170,000.

“Customers love the picture and sound improvements from film to digital and were relieved that we had made the switch to digital and will remain in business in their area, using Christie’s Solaria One.”

Rhonda Fitzsimmons, Fun Time Cinema, Kendig, Pennsylvania

The Fun Time has three locations in Pennsylvania ranging from four to six screens each. It specializes in youth and family movies at economy prices, and also offers private screenings and parties. The installation was done by Integrity Entertainment Systems, LLC.

“The main selling feature for us was that the Christie Solaria® One could project both alternative content from Blu-Ray players as well as digital cinema files, including our pre-show ads. Also, the integrated media block (IMB) came with the projector, as opposed to other vendors with their external servers. That was a great combination, and we like having the newest and the best. The Christie Solaria One suits a small theater like the Princess very well. Audiences really notice the difference in color saturation, clarity and sound.”

Carleigh Pope of Princess Cinema with Solaria One

John Tutt, Princess Cinema, Waterloo, Ontario

The Princess Cinema is a 180-seat theater specializing in documentaries, foreign-language films, avant-garde festival-type films and emerging Canadian cinema content. It is located on the second floor of an historic 19th century brewery building. Christie’s technicians assisted Princess staff in quickly setting up the unit and training them on it.

“The Christie Solaria One has worked out perfectly for me, and it was obtained at a much more favorable price than the estimates I was getting on the Internet. In addition to the superior visual and sound quality, the Solaria One freed up a great deal of space in the balcony.”

Barry Flood, Tryon Theatre, Tryon, North Carolina

The Tryon is a single-screen exhibitor in Tryon, North Carolina. It was built in 1932 and re-opened after a fire in 1938 with an added balcony. The feature film changes often, with runs of two or three days being the norm, and the theater is also used for presentations of a local film society. The Solaria install was done by Sonic Equipment Company.

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Christie Positions Customers for Decades of Growth with Wide Range of Innovative Products, Services and Financing Options at CinemaCon

Christie®, a global visual technology company, will showcase a wide range of innovative cinema projection solutions, backed by its monitoring and support services, at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas, April 15 – 18. Christie is the world’s largest manufacturer, installer and servicer of DLP Cinema® projectors and once again has the show’s largest CinemaCon exhibit area to confirm its position as the “Exhibitor’s Choice” for attendees of this pre-eminent gathering of movie theater owners from around the world.

“Our customers view Christie and its business partners as the suppliers-of-choice for the technology infrastructure and ongoing service expertise needed to deliver exciting and immersive movie experiences,” said Kathryn Cress, vice president, Global and Corporate Marketing, Christie. “At the same time, Christie knows that its customers have an eye on the future, as does Christie, and the company is actively involved in securing this future by developing innovative solutions, such as laser projection, boothless projection systems and solutions for exhibitors who have yet to make the move to digital.”

Cress also noted that Christie’s offerings span the needs of independent exhibitors, which encompass drive-ins, film festivals and post-production in-house studios, as well as global cinema chains, to leverage cinema and alternative content across all sizes of cinema auditoriums, in 2K, 4K and in 3D, on standard and large-format, ‘premium’ screens.’

In addition to comprehensive solutions on display in Christie booth #2103A and in the Milano Room, Christie is a sponsor of the International Day activities, including its Awards Luncheon on April 15, which Jack Kline, president and chief operating officer, Christie Digital Systems USA, Inc. will address. As well, Craig Sholder, vice president, Entertainment Solutions, Christie will kick off the opening night dinner and reception, which Christie is also sponsoring.

The Seven Zones in Christie’s Booth Showcase Choices for Exhibitors
“Visitors to the Christie booth will have the opportunity to experience our entire digital cinema offering, whose scope encompasses financing the move to digital cinema, establishing an affordable and flexible upgrade path towards new formats and technologies, and turnkey service and support for their operations,” said Cress. “These seven zones will amply demonstrate Christie’s commitment to be a trusted, one-stop shop for all exhibitor needs.”

Zone 1 – Through the Christie innovation theater, Christie will demonstrate the projection technology required for the current state and long-term future of the industry. Proof points will include footage from James Cameron that delivers an immersive and detailed HFR experience. And see first-hand how Christie is projecting 3D movies at brightness levels of 14 foot-lamberts (ft-L).

The Christie Solaria One

Zone 2 – The Christie Solaria One and Solaria One+ will showcase their completeness and “brightest in small projection class” attributes. The Solaria One is perfect for screens up to 35 feet, projecting 8000 lumens in the DCI color space. For theaters with side masking or post production houses, Christie Solaria One+ offers a motorized lens mount, superior optical performance specifications enabling higher contrast, and is capable of attaining an additional 1000 lumens within the DCI color space.

The Christie Duo


Zone 3 – As an alternative to current “name brand” big-screen projection at a very economical price, the Christie Duo will be featured. A premium cinema experience for everyone is delivered by the Christie Duo, which achieves the world’s most brilliant, big-screen, 2D and 3D premium theater experiences. Our dual-projection solution is cost effective with low upfront costs and no ongoing revenue sharing to worry about. Yet one need not sacrifice brightness, sharpness and superior 3D images with this economical choice.

Zone 4 – Christie’s Superior Performance (SP) Xenolite® lamps feature 30 percent longer lamp life, to with their unsurpassed reliability. Christie’s Xenolite lamps have always delivered, reaching an extraordinary 99.999 percent increase in theatre uptime. The new SP Xenolite lamp provides the same unmatched brightness and reliability along with a 30 percent longer life than traditional Xenon lamps, which maximize an exhibitor’s investment in them.

Zone 5 – A mini Network Operations Center will highlight Christie’s state-of-the-art Network Operations Center (NOC), operated by Christie’s Managed Services group. Their NOC facilities worldwide safeguard our customers’ digital projectors and in-lobby displays to keep them running 24/7/365. The NOC features remote monitoring and reporting, phone support, preventive servicing, onsite emergency response and critical spares replenishment programs for digital cinema projection and digital signage displays.

Zone 6 – Christie is one of the few vendors offering custom Boothless Projection, which in turns frees up additional theater seating. Christie’s Managed Services team will showcase their customized boothless projection system as part of a complete customized solution. This turnkey boothless solution provides a special lift system that enables projectors to be positioned out of the way during normal operation and lowered for maintenance, freeing up space for seating that would normally have been taken up by the projection booths.

Zone 7 – Revenue opportunities from In-lobby digital signage, designed, built, deployed and supported by Christie Managed Services along with its partner network will be highlighted. Experience what a theater lobby could be with eye-catching digital signage such as digital box office, digital posters, digital menu boards and custom kiosks.

Christie’s Commitment to HFR
The two main goals of Christie’s HFR activities are to help the industry develop the best HFR content and the best delivery system for HFR content. The first goal involves assisting leading-edge filmmakers and post-production companies in perfecting HFR movie creation, so the industry has the most engaging, entertaining content possible. The second goal is to assist exhibitors in showing these 3D HFR movies in all their glory. To these ends, Christie is helping create the standards for 3D HFR movies through formal and informal technology-development alliances with major producers and directors, post production facilities, studios and technology partners. On the exhibitor’s front, Christie provides one stop shopping for all the hardware, software and services that enable exhibitors to deliver a filmmaker’s vision in stunning 3D HFR quality. For more information visit http://www.higherframerates.com.

Christie Achieves Milestone with Industry’s First 4K Resolution 3-chip DLP Projector Running at 60 Hz

The quality, clarity and brightness of amusement park attractions, video and image-intensive shows, and exhibitions and virtual design applications take a significant leap forward today with the introduction of the new Christie® D4K2560 and Christie D4K3560 projectors. The new D4K models are the first projectors to combine 4K resolution, high frame rates at 60 frames per second (fps) and 3-chip DLP® technology. Both the Christie D4K2560 (25,000 center lumens) and Christie D4K3560 (35,000 center lumens) provide razor-sharp image detail – and video with smoother motion and transitions – for unsurpassed image quality and a more vibrant and appealing visual experience. The new projectors replace the Christie D4K25 and D4K35, respectively, and are perfect for any application requiring 4K, 60 fps, 3-chip DLP® projectors with high brightness.

The New Christie D4K3560 4K Resolution 3-Chip DLP Projector

“Christie is the only manufacturer providing full 4K (4096 x 2160) resolution at 60 Hz and the reliability and image clarity of 3-chip DLP® all in one package. Both projectors are a quantum leap forward in video image processing and a breakthrough in high frame rate and high resolution video projection,” said Mike Garrido, senior product manager, Business Products, Christie.

The Christie D4K2560 and Christie D4K3560 projectors are the first of Christie’s new TruLife™ Electronics platform that offers customers superior image and video quality for the most comfortable and realistic viewing experience. Additionally, the units come equipped with 3G SDI, Display Port, and DVI/Dual Link DVI inputs, so Christie customers can update their existing sites for future projects without the constraints of SDVI inputs.

“Customers such as automotive designers and amusement park operators will love the increased dynamic range and the highest fidelity content with immaculate, deep, and vivid color transitions,” Garrido continued. “Amusement parks, for example, are open all day and well into the evening seven days a week and the combination of 4K, 60 Hz and DLP® reliability can manage the heavy workload with smooth, crystal-clear video content much longer than what has been available.

“With the launch of the Christie D4K2560 and D4K3560, Christie stands above the crowd in its ongoing commitment to providing the ultimate visual experience to its customers. Our new projectors continue to demonstrate our dedication to being the industry leader with incomparable solutions and customer service.”

The Christie D4K2560 and Christie D4K3560 have a three-year parts and labor warranty and ship in June 2013.

Christie Continues Setting the Bar Higher at National Association of Broadcasters Show 2013

Christie® is showcasing its newest offerings at the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) show April 8-11 including the world premiere of 3-chip DLP® technology displaying 4K resolution at 60 Hz with the introduction of the new Christie D4K2560 and Christie D4K3560 projectors.

These new 4K resolution products are the first to include the new Christie TruLife® Electronics platform – a quantum leap in video-image processing and a breakthrough in high frame rate/high resolution video projection for the ultimate in hyper-realistic images.

The Christie D4K2560 is displaying full 4K resolution at 60 Hz and, along with the Christie D4K3560, the Christie D4K2560 provides precision image detail and video with smoother motion and transitions for a more vibrant and appealing visual experience. Featuring flexible 4K inputs, both projectors are ideal for applications requiring high brightness and 4K resolution with immaculate video and image quality.

Innovation Theatre provides Sneak-Peek at the Future of 3D Cinema
The spacious and inviting Christie booth also features the Entertainment Solutions Innovation Theatre presenting a groundbreaking comparison between 3 F.L. and 14 F.L. while emphasizing the benefits of higher brightness 3D.

Christie Broadcast Set Highlights Latest Trends
The Christie booth also features the ultramodern Christie broadcast set with a concave backdrop of 138 Christie® MicroTiles®. The 48 center tiles feature Christie Interactivity Kit and Christie Jumpstart while two portrait-mounted 55-inch Christie FHD551-X flat panels with damage-resistant, optically bonded Corning® Gorilla® Glass frame the sides of the fully integrated exhibit. All display technology is mounted using rp Visuals custom-mounted display solutions with two Christie Spyder X20 video processors managing the content.

Utilizing thin and lightweight Gorilla Glass, Christie is the only brand to offer a bonded solution that retains the LCD flat panel’s sleek, narrow-bezel design without increasing the image-to-image gap between panels.

Christie Business Products Zone
Located in the Business Products zone is the new Christie LW720 3LCD projector. Building on the successful Christie LW650, the Christie LW720 is a compact and affordable LCD projector with 7200 ANSI lumens and 2500:1 contrast ratio for high brightness and deep, rich blacks. The single-lamp LW720 has one of the largest lens shift ranges*, giving customers the ability to place the projector in a variety of locations in museums, houses of worship, large conference rooms and rental/staging applications.

Also at NAB for the first time is the Christie FHD551-W outdoor flat panel. Introduced earlier this year, the rugged 55-inch Christie FHD551-W with optically-bonded glass is a professional grade full HD (1920 x 1080 resolution) solution for a wide range of applications including outdoor sporting events and venues, architectural applications, entertainment parks, the hospitality and resort industry, transportation, and other outdoor environments not usually applicable with standard LCD panels.

Following on the heels of a successful launch late last year, Christie is pleased to showcase the Christie DHD775-E and Christie DHD550-G 1-chip DLP® projectors. Fast becoming go-to solutions for displays in board rooms, classrooms and meeting spaces in government facilities, both the E Series and G Series comes with native HD resolution models and easily connect to today’s computers either wired or via wireless connectivity option. The Christie DWU775-E features an optional dual processor warp module for blending and warping images, color matching and an optional stacking system – making it ideal for applications requiring geometric adjustments and/or multi-projector setups and rental and staging applications. For fixed applications, the Christie DHD550-G provides exceptional image quality boasting 5000 lumens from a single mercury-lamp design. With high brightness and better price/performance than other projectors in its class, the Christie G Series is an excellent choice for myriad display applications where value and image quality are deciding factors.

The Business Products Zone also includes two Christie Roadster HD20K-J 3-chip DLP® projectors demonstrating their ability to flawlessly blend and warp images.

Christie Products at Five Additional Locations
A 3-unit tall by 2-unit wide array of 72-inch WU cubes will be displayed at the Vizrt booth while the Quantel booth features a Christie CP4230 DLP Cinema® projector using a Christie Spyder X20.

At the Autodesk booth, two Christie Roadster HD14K-J 3-chip DLP® projectors and a Christie Spyder X20 will be displayed while, at the Alcorn McBride booth, 24 Christie MicroTiles will be showcased. Creator of the Pandoras Box media player, coolux Media Systems is featuring the Christie YK50 dual-arm projector yoke supporting the Christie LX700 projector, 12 Christie MicroTiles and four Christie HD10K-M 3-chip DLP® projectors.

Finally, The Ryerson School of Media will have dozens of students traveling the show floor in their phosphorescent orange shirts, encouraging visitors to stop at the Christie booth.

*Varies on lens

Christie Introduces TruLife Electronics Platform, Designed to Deliver Hyper-Realistic Images

Quantum Leap In Video Processing Provides Powerful Combination Of High Frame Rates And High Resolution

Christie®, a world leader in visual technology displays, today unveiled its latest electronics platform – Christie TruLife™ – with a proprietary, 1.2 Gigapixel per second, floating point architecture. Christie TruLife electronics forms the basis for the latest generation of projectors capable of delivering industry-leading ultra high resolution, high frame rate video with unprecedented image fidelity (e.g. 4K resolution image processing at 60 fps and beyond). The current standard digital interfaces such as DVI have a bandwidth of 165 MHz.

Anchored by a high-performance electronics engine that leverages the latest in field-programmable gate array (FPGA) integrated circuits (ICs), the platform is capable of supporting a video-processing pipeline of up to 1.2 Gigapixels per second (GPix/s). Christie projectors based on the new electronics platform will use this very high capacity image-processing power to deliver immersive, hyper-realistic video experiences.

Exclusive Design Delivers True Lifelike Visual Experiences

“Traditional design cycles and the limitations of off-the-shelf video processing ICs were hindering our ability to solve video-processing problems. This was in turn holding back the expression of our customers’ collective imaginations for realizing lifelike, ultra-realistic, immersive environments through video displays,” said Jennifer Smith, vice president of Global Engineering at Christie. “By breaking from the pack with our own custom designs, we were able to build a high-performance video pipeline and computational blocks that deliver the high-fidelity images our customers are clamoring for. The first expression of the Christie TruLife electronics architecture will be debuted at the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) show April 6-11 in Las Vegas.”

Many industries will immediately benefit from this original video-processing electronics architecture, with cases in point including those end users creating groundbreaking theme-park attractions, visualization “power walls” and flight simulation environments. Christie TruLife electronics will underpin these applications providing customers with realistic experiences, alleviating the image blurring and motion sickness that may accompany these environments.

Speed the Hallmark of the Christie TruLife Electronics Platform

Just how powerful is the Christie TruLife electronics platform? Taking a common measurement of video-processing power – the speed or rate with which video data is processed, typically measured in Gigapixels per second (GPix/s) – the Christie platform scales to reach 1.2 GPix/s, which is nearly 10x faster than standard high-def projection and 4x faster than typical 3D projection, as well as double what other 4K projectors are capable of.

Launching throughout 2013, Christie projectors featuring TruLife will enable 4K2K, Ultra-HD/Quad-HD resolutions today at 60 fps, and will have the capability to support higher resolutions and higher frame rates.

Floating Point Strides

“When increasing the resolution, one simultaneously needs a higher frame rate for the images and increased dynamic range, to make the experience more lifelike. We achieved this by designing a new floating-point processing engine within the platform, which affords an equivalent of 25 bits of fixed point processing as compared to the 8 to 10 bits of processing found in today’s standard projectors. We linked our floating point processing modules with the very latest in ultra high speed serial communication links, called “SerDes” and fast access memory blocks to deliver an unprecedented solution,” said Jeevan Vivegananthan, director of product development, Christie Business Products.

“The increased dynamic range offered by the floating point engine of Christie TruLife will be appreciated by those, such as automobile designers, who want to render the highest fidelity images with very smooth, deep and rich color transitions,” added Vivegananthan.

Christie’s new electronics platform will also facilitate the creation of new user experiences, automated setup, increased connectivity and “smart” control features enabling the next generation of collaborative, augmented reality and projection mapping applications.

“Rather than wait for the traditional video IC industry to catch up with the needs of the professional AV market, Christie took the lead and pioneered its own technology solution,” added Smith.

Christie is showcasing some of its newest technologies, including new projectors based on the Christie TruLife electronics platform, at the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) show April 6-11; see Booth SL 2609.

Christie’s South American Subsidiary Opens Office In São Paulo

Share of South American AV and digital cinema market expected to grow rapidly this decade

Christie®, a world leader in visual technologies, continued to expand its presence in South America with the opening of its first office and showroom in São Paulo, Brazil, which was celebrated with a reception attended by customers and business partners of Christie Digital Systems South America Ltda., and leading dignitaries of the Brazilian cinema exhibition industry. The opening is part of a wave of global expansion by Christie, which includes new subsidiaries and offices in South Africa, Australia and India during the past twelve months.

Jack Kline, president and CEO, Christie Digital Systems USA, Inc., said the opening of the São Paulo facility is critical in meeting the accelerating demand for Christie’s digital cinema, ProAV, visualization and simulation solutions and services throughout South America, especially in Brazil.

“The country of Brazil specifically is one of the world’s fastest-growing economies and São Paulo is the ideal central geographic location from which to increase our share of the South America market, and to provide in-region customer service and support, most notably in the digital cinema market, where we already have an established and growing customer base,” Kline added.

Bruno Tavares, general manager of Christie Digital Systems South America Ltda., said the new facility at Rua Gomes de Carvalho 1765, Suite 12, São Paulo, will initially be headquarters to a dozen sales and service staff, as well as showrooms and training rooms with many products, including the DCI-compliant Christie® Solaria One, which is ideal for community theaters in emerging markets such as South America.

Tavares told guests attending the opening ceremony: “Christie projectors and other solutions have been in use in theaters throughout South America for years, but with the move from film to the mandatory digital movie format, we fully expect Christie to become the digital cinema supplier of choice. As a consequence, we have an option to expand in this same location in anticipation of Christie and its South American partners capturing increased market share in the region.”

Among distinguished guests attending the opening ceremony and reception were national and local government dignitaries as well as blue chip representation from the Brazilian cinema industry, headed by Manoel Rangel, president of the Brazilian Motion Picture Agency (ANCINE).

The guest list also had a strong representation from Christie’s key customers in Brazil including Luiz Severiano Ribeiro Neto from Kinoplex; Marcos Araújo, Grupo Araújo de Cinemas; Adhemar Oliveira, Grupo Espaço de Cinema; Marcos Barros, Cinesystem; Gilmar Santo, Cineflix; and Toninho Campos, Roxy Cinemas.

Several Christie business partners also attended the opening and tour of the new facilities including Lorenzo Garcia from Kelonik; Francisco Severino da Silva and Thiago Pereira from Santa Clara Poltronas; and Guillermo Younger, Alex Younger and Guillermo Younger Jr., of CE+S.

Christie has been active in Brazil through partners for many years and has sponsored key film festivals and industry conferences, including the 6º Show de Inverno Campos do Jordão, on April 25-27.

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Christie Interactivity Kit and Christie MicroTiles Let Visitors Curate Their Own Tour at Cleveland Museum of Art

Visitors to the celebrated Cleveland Museum of Art and its Gallery One are engaging with displays and curating their own tours thanks to Christie® MicroTiles® and Christie Interactivity Kit. Blending art and technology as part of an elegant $100 million renovation, Gallery One’s Collection Wall is a 40-foot wide multi-touch screen comprising two 15-units wide by 5-units tall Christie MicroTiles video walls using Christie Interactivity Kit. The 4-unit wide by 3-unit tall “Line and Shape” MicroTiles video wall with another Interactivity Kit is located in Studio Play, Gallery One’s early (childhood) learning zone.

Inspiring visitors and motivating the younger, tech-savvy demographic to explore the museum’s thousands of works including Pablo Picasso masterpieces, the Collection Wall allows up to 16 people to interact simultaneously with the wall using RFID tags on iPad stations. The results they create also suggest further topics of interest. Visitors can personalize and build his or her collection, curating their own tour on the iPad using the museum’s ArtLens app.

Christie MicroTiles at Cleveland Museum of Art

The “Line and Shape” wall lets up to three children simultaneously draw lines or shapes. The content management software then finds and displays similar shaped artwork from the museum’s collection, encouraging participants to see shapes in everyday life.

Zenith Systems Finds the Answer with Christie MicroTiles
When Christie MicroTiles debuted, Doug Fortney of Zenith Systems, project integrator, learned how the museum could eliminate the need to replace projector lamps and not worry about color matching even for a display that runs all day. He was particularly interested in their maintenance since he wanted to install a video wall directly into the architecture.

“When I learned from Bob Christopher (Central Regional Manager, Business Products Fixed Install, Christie) you could repair each tile just by removing its screen – that got really interesting because, as an integrator, we’re always thinking about not only building something, but maintaining it. It was very important to come up with a sustainable design. Part of what is so attractive about MicroTiles and Interactivity Kit is the components are modular, not very big, and everything can be repaired quickly. We don’t really have access to the back – so we needed to be able to fix anything from the front,” said Fortney.

“The big things that appealed to us are no lamps to replace, the 65,000-hour half-life of the LEDs, the technology in the MicroTiles that helps them maintain a uniform color across all the tiles, and the great black levels. Trying to make this art look really spectacular requires fantastic black levels and the MicroTiles give us the blacks we want. The art really ‘pops’ on it and adds to that ‘wow’ effect because the black levels are so good.”

Visitor Interacts with Christie MicroTiles' 40 ft-wide Collection Wall


Christie Interactivity Kit Completes the Visual Solution
“The other piece that became very important was learning about Christie Interactivity Kit at another trade show – because this wall was going to be interactive. Until that point, we were looking at another product for the touch interface because we needed a very high accuracy performance where you touch a small piece of art and manipulate it,” noted Fortney.

Adding to the experience, Fortney and his team also wrote software that generates a dead zone around the initial touch, preventing accidental touches such as a piece of loose clothing from creating an unintentional result.

Powered by Baanto™ ShadowSense™, the Christie Interactivity Kit adds multi-touch interactivity to any large-format, rectangular digital display. It lets multiple users interact simultaneously with a video wall with the resolution and speed needed to support finger-based gestures such as flicking, pinching, rotating and scrolling. Scalable, and designed in pieces, Christie Interactivity Kit attaches to a video wall perimeter and is configurable into 84 different sizes with no drivers or manual calibration of sensors or cameras required.

Fortney said the displays are becoming the iconic symbol of the gallery, calling them a unique application of technology and a beautiful thing to see. He is not alone. The Cleveland Museum of Art and its Christie MicroTiles/Christie Interactivity Kit digital displays are earning enthusiastic reviews from staff, visitors and media.

“From everybody it has been an ‘Oh wow! This is beautiful.’ No one has seen anything like it,” Fortney concluded. “From a distance, the wall has a real ‘wow factor’ and then a completely different ‘oh wow’ experience when you go up and interact with it because now it is right in your face. Rather than simply a traditional static museum, you have interactivity that helps people see, appreciate, and understand the art that is at the museum. The technology draws this new crowd here and they want to experience it.”

Pennsylvania Independent FunTime Cinemas Goes Digital With Christie Solaria One

Quality and cost appreciated as owners get ready for the end of 35 mm film

The FunTime Cinemas, a specialty exhibitor with three cinemas in Pennsylvania, has completed its conversion to digital projection at its Kendig location using the Christie® Solaria One, an all-in-one DLP-Cinema® solution designed especially for independent and community-owned theatres.

“All six Kendig Square screens have Christie Solaria One projectors and the reaction from customers has been fantastic,” says Ronda Fitzsimmons, president of FunTime Cinemas Inc. of Kendig, PA. “They love the picture and sound improvements and were relieved that we had made the change and will remain in business in their area.

“We were already having some delays in getting film prints, and many prints were coming in badly scratched, so we were requesting replacement films more often. Digital format fixes this problem, and in any case we knew film prints would be phased out completely by the end of the year,” she added.

With cinemas in Kendig Square in Willow Street, South York Plaza York and Colonial Park Mall Harrisburg, FunTime Cinemas specialize in youth and family movies at economy prices. The company also offers private screenings and parties, a customer newsletter and advertising opportunities for local businesses, which are easier to include with digital.

The Solaria One was installed by Integrity Entertainment Systems, LLC. “We recommend the Christie Solaria One for smaller screens because it is the most cost-effective choice for quality screening, adaptability and reliable support options,” says Gary Engvold, president of Integrity. “With features such as the built-in media block, the Solaria One can be easily upgraded to show high frame rate (HFR) movies. Overall, the Solaria One gives smaller exhibitors everything they need in a single purchase, backed up with long-term support.”

The exhibitor was very pleased with Integrity’s customized service and expertise. “The Integrity people are really wonderful to work with, and our representative bent over backwards to help me understand the things we absolutely had to have for digital to run, plus advised me as to what extras made the most difference” says Fitzsimmons. “Integrity’s installer was super helpful in guiding us through the new setup. I’m pleased with everything they’ve done for us, and plan to use them in the future for the remaining locations we have to convert.”

Craig Sholder, vice president, entertainment solutions at Christie, says that Christie is committed to helping the independents enjoy the same quality solutions as bigger exhibitors. “We want them to be able to achieve top quality digital projection at a price they can afford. Our Solaria One projector, our global network of first-rate installation partners such as Integrity and our participation in industry programs to help them finance the change are just some of the ways we’re serving this important market sector.”

The best possible movie-going experience is achieved by arming exhibitors, particularly those tens of thousands of smaller, independent and community theaters worldwide that have not yet converted from film to digital projection, with an ‘all-in-one’ solution and the Christie Solaria One fits the bill perfectly. Whether it’s alternative content or packaged, feature film content in 2D or 3D, Christie’s product is a safe, secure and DCI-compliant choice – the easy choice – for exhibitors intent on delivering awesome experiences to their customers. And it can be easily upgraded to show high frame rate (HFR) movies as well, using its built-in Christie IMB (Integrated Media Block).

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