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Flag Systems Delivers Balanced SPL to HARD Summer Festival with HARMAN’s JBL VTX Line Arrays and Crown I-Tech HD Amplifiers

HARMAN_HardFestLOS ANGELES, California – As an audio system provider with a 40-year history of working with world-class audio equipment, Flag Systems was again contracted to provide sound reinforcement and personnel for this year’s HARD Summer Festival. Having used HARMAN’s JBL VERTEC® line arrays for over a decade, the company recently decided to upgrade to JBL VTX Series line arrays, exceeding all expectations at the show.

The HARD Summer Festival is an electronic music dance festival, featuring some of the world’s top DJs. Naturally, this requires the highest volume levels and a heavy bass from the PA system, which not only needed to move a tremendous amount of air, but also due to city noise ordinances must have balanced SPL combined with precise pattern control. With guest appearances like Mary J. Blige and DJ Tiesto, system designers dazzled audiences with a total of 40 JBL VTX V25 loudspeakers and 44 VTX S28 subwoofers on the main stage.

Flag Systems was responsible for the audio at the main outdoor stage and one tent. On the main stage, it set up two hangs of 18 VTX V25 line arrays for the main LR system and four VTX V25 units as front fills. By using the same loudspeakers for the main hang and front fills, they were able to provide sonic consistency while maintaining high SPL’s that smaller loudspeakers cannot deliver. To ensure that the attendees enjoyed a bass-heavy experience with controlled coverage, the subwoofers were set up in a delay-steered end-fire cardioid configuration of 11 2×2 blocks.

The tent that Flag Systems was responsible for, dubbed “Pink Tent”, had a system consisting of two hangs of eight VERTEC® VT4889 line arrays and two of Flag Systems’ recently-acquired VTX V20 loudspeakers for front fills. Outside the tent for out fills and delays, there were two stacks of four VT4889 loudspeakers on risers and four of Flag System’s new proprietary SubX on each side. For the DJ monitors Flag used one VTX S25 and three V20 loudspeakers per side.

The entire system was powered by 102 Crown I-Tech 12000HD and three Crown I-Tech 4x3500HD amplifiers. JBL HiQnet Performance Manager™ was used to manage the system.

“At the request of guest engineers, we needed a system that could deliver all of the low-end frequencies in an accurate and powerful fashion,” said Dale West, Systems Designer of Flag Systems. “We believe that the JBL VTX Series is a phenomenal sounding system. The high end of the D2 driver never needs a lot of EQ, staying extremely linear as the output level increases, and the subwoofers are equally impressive. In order to generate the balanced SPL we needed for this festival and still have cancelation behind the stage, we end-fired the subs because it allowed us to achieve this with fewer boxes when compared to a traditional cardioid configuration.”

“We used Performance Manager because it is an amazing tool for system alignment, control over circuit-based EQ’ing, level control and delay times to add digital arc delays for optimum horizontal sub steering,” said West. “On a show like this where a system is pushed to its limits, it’s an absolute must to monitor system health, limiter threshold and component health. I never leave home without it.”

With this setup, the PA system exceeded the requirements of the audience as well as the touring engineers. The unique configuration rewarded the team with a good rear rejection, high SPL, smooth high end and powerful bass. West was mostly impressed by VTX’s ability to be tuned easily for any application, and is pleased with the increased efficiency of this upgrade.

“I can see that JBL did a lot of work designing these components, that in turn helps us a lot with systems design and implementation,” said West. “When I have the time to do my due diligence, by capturing multiple mic measurements and really delve into circuit based level and EQ-ing, the results have been jaw dropping. However when there is a time crunch I have complete confidence I’ll be able to get a PA into the air and timed correctly and get a fairly linear, distortion free system with a high SPL in relatively little time. With JBL VTX every show ends with smiles from the audience, artists and techs. I really enjoy using this product.”

Flag Systems will again be providing VTX for the upcoming Hard Festival Day of the Dead taking place Nov 1-2 in Los Angeles.

http://www.hardfest.com/

http://flagsystemsinc.com/

HARMAN (www.harman.com) designs, manufactures and markets premier audio, visual, infotainment and integrated control solutions for the automotive, consumer and professional markets. With leading brands including AKG®, Harman Kardon®, Infinity®, JBL®, Lexicon® and Mark Levinson ®, the Company is admired by audiophiles, musicians and the entertainment 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 approximately 16,000 people across the Americas, Europe, and Asia and reported sales of $5.3 billion for the twelve months ended June 30, 2014.

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Ward Church Makes a Joyful Noise With Renkus-Heinz

 Northville, MI – October 2014…In today’s fast-changing society, many churches have taken creative steps to grow their congregations by diversifying their offerings. Ward Church, a Presbyterian house of worship located in this Detroit suburb, is a case in point. The church had long offered three different worship settings each Sunday: a liturgical service in their chapel, a traditional service in their sanctuary, and a post-modern service in Knox Hall, a large multi-use venue. After a new worship director was hired, the church decided to start a fourth, mainstream contemporary service that featured a more driving and progressive rock musical style.

The new service was held in the sanctuary, with an existing sound system that included a pair of Renkus-Heinz STX8 loudspeakers mounted in the center above the stage. While the church had been happy with the STX8s, the more bass-heavy, driving style of music accompanying the new service called for a more powerful, full-spectrum solution.

“Overall, the sound quality was great for the more traditional service, but they wanted to take it up a notch for the more rock-oriented service,” explained consultant Nathan Cole of Sound Planning Communications in Redford, Michigan. “There was nothing wrong with the existing STX8 loudspeakers — they are good products and certainly could handle a contemporary service. What was needed was a re-installation of the speakers, some tweaking and some additional supplemental boxes here and there to fill it out.”

After modeling the room, Sound Planning Communications split up the two existing center STX8s to front right and left positions and kept an existing STX8 in the rear for back fill. An ICONYX IC Live ICL-FR-DUAL Digitally Steerable Line Array loudspeaker system was added on each side of the stage to cover the side-fill requirements created by a drop to an 18-foot ceiling on each side. Additional subwoofers were also installed.

“The IC Lives gave great penetration into the lower areas,” said Cole. “And because of their width, they delivered great horizontal front-fill coverage. We didn’t need to do any down-fill or front-fill boxes because the IC LIVEs were covering all the way across.”

After installing a series of 4-inch acoustic panels to help avoid bass traps in the final phase of the project, church leaders were pleased with the result.

“They didn’t really recognize how inadequate the previous system had been until they started the new service,” said Cole. “By re-positioning the existing Renkus-Heinz boxes and supplementing them with the ICONYX arrays, they now have a very warm, very punchy, nice sounding system for the space.”

 

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About Renkus-Heinz - Headquartered in Foothill Ranch, California, Renkus-Heinz, Inc. is the worldwide leader in the design and manufacture of audio operations networks, digitally steerable arrays, powered and non-powered loudspeakers, system specific electronics and fully integrated Reference Point Array systems.

 

DANLEY DOES DOUBLE DUTY FOR RICHWOODS CHRISTIAN CHURCH AND SATELLITE LOCATION

Richwoods_ExteriorPEORIA, ILLINOIS – OCTOBER 2014: Richwoods Christian Church was founded in the late 1990s by pastor Jim Powell in Peoria, Illinois. Its congregation was initially small, a scant sixty-five people, but those congregants were motivated to grow the church. They succeeded, and today Richwoods Christian Church brings 1,400 people together every weekend, spread across four services at two locations. The larger location built its current sanctuary in a former high-end furniture store, where, despite low ceiling height, local A/V integration firm Advanced Audio and Lighting gave the church a highly-intelligible and musical sound reinforcement system based on Danley Sound Labs SH-50 full-range loudspeakers and TH-115 subwoofers. Not wanting to compromise at the satellite location, Richwoods Christian Church asked for Danley again. There, a collapsible system of self-powered Danley SH-96 loudspeakers and TH-118 subwoofers meets that goal.

“Everyone we worked with at Richwoods had a clear vision of what they wanted to achieve without getting overly involved in the nuts and bolts of how it would be achieved,” said Trent Keeling, vice president at Advanced Audio and Lighting. “Quality audio was high on their priority list. They wanted a system that would deliver their very contemporary praise and worship style with authority. Because there’s a lot of musical talent in the church, they needed something that would serve everything from orchestral music to a five-piece rock band, on top of having excellent intelligibility.”

Richwoods_PerformanceWhile the church’s new location in a former furniture store would serve it well in terms of location and accessibility, it was not ideal for sound reinforcement. There was only a nineteen-foot distance between the floor and the low steel, which was compressed even further by a modest stage and drop ceiling. “That’s not a standard hang height,” laughed Keeling. “One of Richwoods’ signature programs is its Christmas pageant, which involves, at various points, up to thirty children running around stage with open omnidirectional lavalier mics. If we could place the PA twenty-five feet up and twenty-five feet forward, then just about any loudspeaker could pull that off. But here we were going to be right above the stage, sixteen feet up. That’s where you separate the men from the boys.”

Keeling’s solution was to cover the room with four Danley SH-50 full-range loudspeakers, two close-packed on each side of the stage. “Danley’s Synergy Horn loudspeakers, like the flagship SH-50, have excellent phase coherency and precise pattern control down to 350Hz and lower,” he said. “Because of that pattern control, the SH-50s can be right above the stage without collapsing into feedback. In addition, the fact that the SH-50 is a three-way enclosure gives Richwoods great vocal intelligibility.” Two flown Danley TH-115 subwoofers provide low-end support. The system is nominally stereo, but because the six hundred-plus seat room is so wide, the techs are “discouraged from doing any hard panning,” in Keeling’s words. Biamp Audia provides modest processing, Lab.gruppen amplifiers power the system, the FOH desk is a Yamaha M7, and Shure microphones provide input.

The church was so pleased with the quality of its Danley sound reinforcement system that it motivated the approach they took to designing a satellite location, Richwoods East. “They recognized that the quality of their services was an important component of Richwoods’ success,” said Keeling. “They wanted the satellite to live up to the quality of the ‘Mother Ship’.” The 500-member congregation of Richwoods East meets at an Embassy Suites ballroom using a portable, plug-and-play system. Keeling maintained the ‘Mother Ship’s’ quality by designing a ground-supported system of two self-powered Danley SH-96s and two self-powered Danley TH-115 subwoofers.

ABOUT DANLEY SOUND LABS Danley Sound Labs is the exclusive home of Tom Danley, one of the most innovative loudspeaker designers in the industry today and recognized worldwide as a pioneer for “outside the box” thinking in professional audio technology.

www.danleysoundlabs.com

Pexip Infinity Expands Remote Education Capabilities of Texas Education Telecommunications Network

Scalable Meeting Platform Powers Distance Learning for Over 500 Texas School Districts

OSLO, Norway — Oct. 23, 2014 — Pexip(R), a leading innovator in scalable, distributed video conferencing software, today announced that the company’s Infinity platform has been selected to power the Texas Education Telecommunications Network (TETN). Implemented to support the organization’s expanding distance learning network, the software-based meeting platform enables the TETN to connect a consortium of 20 Education Service Centers, 500 school districts, and the Texas Education Agency. more

Estonia Public Broadcasting Achieves “Best Sound Ever” with HARMAN Studer’s Vista 5 M3 Digital Console

Studer_EstoniaTALLINN, Estonia – Estonia Public Broadcasting recently upgraded its OB van with a HARMAN Studer Vista 5 M3 digital console. The organization chose to make the upgrade in anticipation of the Estonian Song and Dance Celebration, which took place July 4-6 in Tallinn.

Sold through ProMedia Inc., Studer’s Estonia distributor, the Vista 5 M3 is being used to mix all audio through EPB’s OB van. The console is also complemented with Studer’s Vista FX engine, a 2U chassis that offers Lexicon surround effects and a graphic EQ, all controlled through the Vistonics™ user interface. Connection to the console’s DSP engine is made directly via two high-capacity multichannel HD links.

“This is the first time we have had the chance to mix 150 channels—with the Vista 5, it’s now possible,” said Vytautas Martinonis, Head of the Radio Technical and Sound Recording Department, Estonia Public Broadcasting. “It’s given us the best sound I’ve ever heard from a digital console.”

The Studer Vista 5 M3 is ideal for small to midsize studios and OB trucks, thanks to its compact size and simple connectivity. The total I/O capacity, comprising various cards including mic/line, ADAT, TDIF, AES/EBU, SDI and MADI, may exceed 1,700 inputs and outputs.

“We chose the Vista 5 M3 because it made the most sense from an ergonomic perspective, and we know this console was specifically built with OB vans in mind,” Martinonis noted. “We have also had a positive experience with the Vista 9 that we use at the Estonia Concert Hall, so we found it to be the perfect choice.”

Martinonis also pointed out that durability was also a key factor in choosing the Vista 5 M3. “It was important to have a console that could perform in higher temperatures and could absorb the movement and bumps that come with being in a portable truck,” he said.

For more information on Estonian Public Broadcasting, please visit www.err.ee

HARMAN (www.harman.com) designs, manufactures and markets premier audio, visual, infotainment and integrated control solutions for the automotive, consumer and professional markets. With leading brands including AKG®, Harman Kardon®, Infinity®, JBL®, Lexicon® and Mark Levinson ®, the Company is admired by audiophiles, musicians and the entertainment 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 approximately 16,000 people across the Americas, Europe, and Asia and reported sales of $5.3 billion for the twelve months ended June 30, 2014.

Deluxe Toronto Demonstrates Commitment to World-Class Quality, Outfits New Facility with HARMAN’s JBL M2 Master Reference Monitors, Crown Amplifiers and BSS Audio Processing

HARMAN_DeluxeTorontoTORONTO, Canada — Deluxe Toronto Ltd., one of the world’s most prestigious and successful suppliers of services and technologies to the worldwide entertainment industry, has completed relocation to a new state-of-the-art facility on King Street West in Toronto. Affirming its commitment to offering the very best in technology, Deluxe has standardized on HARMAN’s JBL M2 Master Reference Monitors, Crown Macro-Tech 9000i amplifiers, and BSS Soundweb London processing.

Deluxe Toronto’s main theaters are equipped with three JBL M2 Master Reference Monitors behind the screen in a left-center-right configuration, powered by Crown Macro-Tech 9000i amplifiers and tuned using BSS Soundweb London processing. Deluxe’s largest mixing stage, Mix 1, is also Canada’s first Dolby Atmos-equipped mixing stage (while also being equipped for IMAX). Deluxe chose JBL 3 Series Studio Monitors in its pre-mix room. The monitoring systems were supplied by HARMAN’s distributor, SC Media Canada.

According to Nick Iannelli, VP of Post Production Operations, Deluxe Toronto, the ability to have identical setups in each mixing room not only ensures consistency for its team of audio engineers; it also provides valuable flexibility for its clients.. “Having the same technology in multiple rooms means we can transfer our work throughout the facility to accommodate different schedules, with no change in what we are hearing.”

“The JBL, Crown and BSS technologies are all built to work together,” said Phil Seel, Senior Engineer, Deluxe Toronto Ltd. “So we have this tremendous, integrated package that not only performs incredibly well, it’s also easy to customize for our operation.”

The choice of HARMAN equipment was the result of Deluxe’s extensive evaluation of the world’s best technologies, and the M2 monitors stood out markedly from the competition. “We did a lot of testing with a lot of different systems, and the M2’s sounded terrific right out of the box,” said Mike Baskerville, Manager, Sound Operations, Deluxe Toronto Ltd..

“When we first listened to the M2 speakers, it was so easy to hear the difference compared to other monitors we tested. The flatness and consistency across the room, was very evident, it didn’t matter where we stood in the room. It was amazing!” Iannelli said.

“Mixing requires critical listening. The second we changed something in the EQ, there was an instant response from the M2 speakers. This accurate sound reproduction effortlessly allows us to find the balance among so many different elements. We could hear the difference right away. It makes mixing exciting,” Baskerville said.

Moreover, the Crown amplification provides Deluxe Toronto with plenty of flexibility, regardless of the project. “We need a lot of headroom and dynamic range for a lot of the theatrical mixing we do, and the Crown amps give us that and more,” Baskerville said.

As Deluxe Toronto hoped, the consistency between rooms has paid off in spades. “For workflow it’s been great,” Baskerville said. “Not only are we hearing the same thing, we continue to be amazed at the quality of the sound, even though we’ve all been working in this industry for a long time!”

“Initial exposure to the new rooms has been met with exceptional reviews,” Iannelli said. “Everyone can now hear every single detail in the mix, which actually creates more work for us in the short term but enables us to deliver a better product at the end of the day!”

“The M2’s are a game changer,” Seel concluded. “To have this kind of fidelity in these systems, it’s mind blowing. We’ve never heard anything like this before.”

Deluxe Entertainment Services Group Inc. is a global leader in media and entertainment services for film, video and online content, from capture to consumption.

Since 1915, Deluxe has been the trusted partner for the world’s most successful Hollywood studios, independent film companies, TV networks, exhibitors, advertisers and others, offering best-in-class solutions in production, post production, distribution, asset and workflow management, and new digital solution-based technologies.

With operations in Los Angeles, New York and around the globe, the company employs nearly 6,000 of the most talented, highly honored and recognized artists and industry veterans worldwide. Deluxe is a wholly owned subsidiary of MacAndrews & Forbes Holdings Inc. For more information visit www.bydeluxe.com and www.bydeluxetoronto.com.

HARMAN (www.harman.com) designs, manufactures and markets premier audio, visual, infotainment and integrated control solutions for the automotive, consumer and professional markets. With leading brands including AKG®, Harman Kardon®, Infinity®, JBL®, Lexicon® and Mark Levinson ®, the Company is admired by audiophiles, musicians and the entertainment 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 approximately 16,000 people across the Americas, Europe, and Asia and reported sales of $5.3 billion for the twelve months ended June 30, 2014

HARMAN’s JBL AXYS Loudspeakers Travel With Rock of Ages UK Tour

JBL_RockofAgesLONDON, United Kingdom — The hilarious, ‘80s-themed musical Rock of Ages has been packing in audiences on Broadway, Las Vegas and now on tour in the UK through November. Rock of Ages features classic hits like “Don’t Stop Believin’,” “We Built This City,” “Wanted Dead or Alive” and “Here I Go Again,” performed with nonstop intensity by a colorful cast of characters—all heard through HARMAN JBL’s AXYS loudspeakers.

London-based Autograph Sound is signed on as the tour’s live sound provider and Chris Full, Sound Designer at Creative Sound Design, is the Associate Sound Designer for the show. Full chose a JBL AXYS system for the Rock of Ages tour because it proved ideal for the production’s highly specific requirements. “We have a ruthless touring schedule throughout the UK,” he said. “Weekly touring in the UK is an art form – with limited truck access and the vastly different size and shape of the venues, from under 1000 seats to nearly 3000 – It’s challenging!”

The show features an elaborate wraparound set that has walls across the back of the stage and up each side, and many loudspeakers integrated into the set itself. “We can’t start to build the onstage audio system until the set is completed, which leaves us with an even tighter timeline than usual to put the sound system together,” Full stated. “So we needed a system that could be set up quickly with easy rigging and be seamlessly integrated into each venue without calling attention to itself visually or restricting audience sightlines – while delivering very loud and proud rock and roll sound levels.”

Full chose a JBL AXYS setup comprised of six Scope T-2115G2 15-inch 3-way loudspeakers, six Scope T-2112G2 12-inch 3-way speakers, 16 Flex U-14G2 and two Flex U-12G2 compact 2-way speakers plus four UB-25 15-inch vented direct-radiating subwoofers. “We used a JBL AXYS rig for the London stage production prior to the tour with excellent results, so we knew it would work well sonically for the tour production, but we had to make some changes and adaptations to accommodate the quick setup and teardown required.”

Full noted that because the music is such a crucial, central element to Rock of Ages, the sound quality has to be nothing less than exceptional. “The audio is at high-volume rock and roll SPL but there’s also a lot of detail and subtlety that needs to be reproduced, as well as dialog clarity,” he said. “So the biggest challenge of the design was achieving a system that packed a lot of punch but also provided that high level of detail.”

Full knew that using the JBL AXYS point-source loudspeakers would provide the required clarity and focused coverage while taking up a minimum of space and keeping rigging time down. “So many UK venues are like miniature opera houses, very ornate theaters where you find you have to make a concerted effort to deliver high-quality audio but without disturbing the appearance if these older, beautiful structures.” Full liked the AXYS’ ability to deliver high output from small lightweight enclosures, whose small size enabled quick rigging for optimum coverage throughout the audience. Each venue uses the same core loudspeaker configuration, with modifications as required to accommodate a particular hall.

One of the JBL AXYS loudspeakers’ biggest sonic strengths is their wide dynamic capability and ability to maintain their detail and clarity at any volume. “In Rock of Ages there are a lot of transitions from soft to loud volume levels and we need the audience to feel the presence of the music even when it’s being played quietly,” Full said. “With the JBL AXYS system, we can turn it up high or very low, and the mix doesn’t change. For a show that relies so heavily on dynamic contrasts for dramatic effect, that’s a fantastic advantage.”

“We’re very pleased with the way the touring production of Rock of Ages sounds and the audience reaction has been fantastic,” Full concluded. “The attributes of the JBL AXYS loudspeakers, especially the ability to shape their sonic performance and coverage via DSP are tailor-made for a show like this.”

For more information, please contact Chris Full at chris@creativesounddesign.co.uk

HARMAN (www.harman.com) designs, manufactures and markets premier audio, visual, infotainment and integrated control solutions for the automotive, consumer and professional markets. With leading brands including AKG®, Harman Kardon®, Infinity®, JBL®, Lexicon® and Mark Levinson ®, the Company is admired by audiophiles, musicians and the entertainment 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 approximately 16,000 people across the Americas, Europe, and Asia and reported sales of $5.3 billion for the twelve months ended June 30, 2014.

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HARMAN’S AKG Celebrates C214 as Best-Selling Condenser Microphone for Studio and Stage in the US for Past 12 Months

AKG_C214NORTHRIDGE, California — HARMAN’s AKG announced that its C214 microphone has been the best-selling condenser microphone for studio and stage in the United States over the past 12 months. From October 1, 2013 to September 30, 2014, no other condenser microphone generated more revenue, as the C214 found its way into countless projects, ranging from home recording studios to international concert tours and everything in between.

The C214 is a tremendously popular recording microphone, delivering a similar sound character as the legendary C414 XLII microphone. However, thanks to its robustness and world-class sound quality, it is also popular as a live microphone, having been used on tour by Dave Natale, Dweezil Zappa, Steve Vai, and others. As further evidence of its versatility, the C214 is also part of AKG’s Drum Set Premium.

Designed as a cost-effective alternative to the high-end C414 family, the C214 large-diaphragm condenser microphone offers a supreme one-inch capsule on an integrated suspension to reduce mechanical noise. It also features a high-performance spider-type shock mount, windscreen and is sold in a heavy-duty aluminum case. In addition, AKG offers two C214 microphones in a Matched Stereo Pair bundle to delivering stunning performance in recording and live settings.

“Having developed and manufactured the C214 in Vienna—a city known for its rich musical history—we here at AKG are thrilled about the microphone’s popularity among leading musicians in the studio and on stage,” said Erich Gaertner, Product Line Manager, AKG. “We are looking forward to continued success with the C214 and will continue developing world-class microphones for the recording and performing communities!”

For more information on the AKG C214, please visit www.akg.com

HARMAN (www.harman.com) designs, manufactures and markets premier audio, visual, infotainment and integrated control solutions for the automotive, consumer and professional markets. With leading brands including AKG®, Harman Kardon®, Infinity®, JBL®, Lexicon® and Mark Levinson ®, the Company is admired by audiophiles, musicians and the entertainment 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 approximately 16,000 people across the Americas, Europe, and Asia and reported sales of $5.3 billion for the twelve months ended June 30, 2014.

Clay Paky Sharpy Washes and grandMA2 Consoles Turn in Winning Performances at the “Miss America Pageant”

MA 1Fifty-three contestants walked the walk on stage at Boardwalk Hall when the 88th “Miss America Pageant” returned to Atlantic City in September. Two dozen Clay Paky Sharpy Wash fixtures and a complement of grandMA2 consoles controlling lighting and media were on hand from Atomic Lighting in Lititz, Pennsylvania for the gala telecast on ABC Television. A.C.T Lighting is the exclusive distributor of both brands in North America.

Allen Branton was the lighting designer for the “Miss America Pageant” with Felix Peralta and Kevin Lawson the lighting directors and Laura Frank the screens producer and media programmer.

“It was our eighth year doing the pageant,” says Peralta. “It’s always a challenge to recreate the excitement of the show; we’re looking to enhance and improve the previous year’s telecast. With three days devoted to pageant preliminaries, which are not broadcast, we got an opportunity to build the show on site. Friday and Saturday were camera rehearsal days then Sunday was the live show.”

Kevin Lawson was responsible for the key light and audience light – an important role for a show where 53 young ladies take center stage. “The show is ultimately about the contestants, and my primary task was to make sure all of them looked good whether 53 girls were out there or one of them was performing in the talent competition,” he notes. “In a lot of ways the pageant is like an awards show: They want a certain amount of grandeur, and there’s a long-standing tradition behind it. The show has to be exciting but high quality and dignified.”

With large groups on stage at times Lawson was challenged to not just bathe the scene with light. “I wanted to shape it enough to make the girls look great and be individually visible,” he explains.

Approximately 24 Sharpy Wash fixtures served as the primary stage wash. They were hung across the stage and acted as “workhorses” for the show, bathing the contestants with backlight and color, Lawson says. “They were in pretty much every shot. I love Sharpys Washes: Their field is consistent, their zoom is great. They’re bright, the color is constant; they’re easily manipulated and fast. In fact, they’re good for all shows.”

Felix Peralta, who handled the environment lighting, notes that the Sharpy washes “treated some scenery, too, including the bigger-than-life-size Miss America statue, which had six washes on it.”

One full grandMA2 console and two grandMA2 lights with fader wing were deployed for lighting. The “Miss America Pageant” was one of the first shows on which the team used 3.0 software. “We enjoyed its many new features,” Peralta reports.

“grandMA2 works well as a multi-user system, and that’s the most critical element of these shows that Felix and I do together for Allen,” says Lawson. “It’s one big happy system. We don’t have to decide whose lights are whose; the fixtures can do double duty easily. The grandMA2 is the only desk that’s really good at this.”

Laura Frank, who is the principal of Minneapolis-based Luminous FX, utilized two full-size grandMA2 consoles running servers to screens, which covered the set. Media content helped establish competition segments and “tie the show together,” she says. “The screens also gave different live views, different angles of the girls” as Frank pulled up the cameras she needed to spotlight the contestants – which one would win the crown?

John Calkins was the production designer for the “Miss America Pageant”.

About A.C.T Lighting

A leading importer and distributor of lighting products, A.C.T Lighting, Inc. strives to identify future trends and cutting-edge products, and stock, sell and support their inventory. The company provides superior customer service and value for money to all of its clients.

For more information call 818-707-0884.

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Registration for the 21st HPA Tech Retreat Now Open

The Bellwether Entertainment Technology Event Returns to Indian Wells
HPA Tech Retreat

(Los Angeles, CA) Today at the SMPTE Symposium, produced by the Hollywood Post Alliance (HPA(r), registration for the 2015 HPA Tech Retreat officially opened. For the 21st consecutive year, a veritable who’s who of engineering, technology, creativity and strategic business leaders will gather in the desert to discuss the trends and technologies of the future, while tackling head-on the issues of the present. The HPA Tech Retreat takes place at the Hyatt Regency Indian Wells, near Palm Springs, CA, from February 9th to the 13th, 2015.

The HPA’s preeminent event enjoys a global reach, bringing together the thought leaders and senior practitioners driving the rapidly advancing entertainment technology landscape. The HPA Tech Retreat has consistently proven to be a crucial gathering where technological developments in production, post production and broadcast are unveiled, discussed and debated. During the Tech Retreat, attendees from the media and entertainment industries are uniquely able to share time and ideas with academics from around the world, scientists, and experts in technology from various disciplines. The environment is one of discovery and exploration.

Mark Schubin, who has led the programming for the HPA Tech Retreat for many years, notes, “Each year, we receive submissions from all over the world – about six times more than we can possibly use – and, based on what I’ve seen so far, it’s going to be hard to choose. So many new technologies have been introduced at the Retreat over the years that it’s tough to count them all.”

Over the course of its history, the HPA Tech Retreat has seen a number of breakthrough products and processes previewed in advance of their actual debuts. Surround headphones, full-color full-motion holograms, Sony’s HDCAM SR, SR Memory, targeted-ad production and distribution systems, Panasonic’s Varicam and stereoscopic cameras, Dolby’s high-dynamic-range video monitors, Pencil-beam microphones, and OLED monitors to name just a few of the many “firsts” to be unveiled at the Tech Retreat.

Leon Silverman, President of HPA, notes, “The Tech Retreat is the place you go to see history before it’s made, and to move and shake with the movers and shakers across the technology community. The subjects are always topical, but the real value of this event is the ability to share ideas and challenges, to understand from those who really know and get inspired. While I take away so much from this event each year in program content, an equally important take away comes from mingling with this amazing group – the teachers who teach the teachers. If you have not been to the Tech Retreat, you owe it to yourself to make a pilgrimage to the desert. If you have been, you know exactly what I’m talking about.”

Breakfast roundtables are also a popular part of every HPA Tech Retreat. Schubin comments, “Participants begin hashing out the future of media at the lively breakfast roundtables. Among the topics already confirmed for the 2015 event are net neutrality, content security, workflow complications, and a review of the legislative and regulatory environment.”

The HPA Tech Retreat is a not to be missed opportunity for industry professionals. The five day, multifaceted event includes dynamic conference sessions, a curated Demo Room with leading-edge technologies, networking events, and parties. The session schedule and programming information will be announced soon.

Earlier this year, SMPTE and HPA became official partners, moving forward with plans for full organizational consolidation by May 2015. Today’s Symposium is the first jointly produced HPA/ SMPTE event, an auspicious time to open registration for the HPA Tech Retreat.

The event has a history of selling out, and timely registration for the 2015 HPA Tech Retreat is recommended. Registration at Early Bird rates is now available, REGISTER. For more information on the event and sponsorship opportunities, visit www.hpaonline.com, call the HPA office at (213) 614-0860, or email Eileen Kramer at ekramer@hpaonline.com.

# # #

About the HPA Tech Retreat
The HPA Tech Retreat(r) is an informal gathering, in the Palm Springs area, of the top industry engineering, technical, and creative talent, as well as strategic business leaders focused on technology, from all aspects of digital cinema, post production, film, television, video, broadcast and related technology areas, for the exchange of information. The 2015 HPA Tech Retreat will take place February 9 to 13, in Indian Wells, California.

About the Hollywood Post Alliance(r)
Hollywood Post Alliance (HPA) serves the professional community of businesses and individuals who provide expertise, support, tools and the infrastructure for the creation and finishing of motion pictures, television, commercials, digital media and other dynamic media content. Through their partnership with the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers(r) (SMPTE(r)), the leader in the advancement of the art, science and craft of the image, sound, and metadata ecosystem, the HPA continues to extend its support of the community it represents. Information about the HPA is available at ww.hpaonline.com.

Media Contact:
ignite strategic communications
p: 818.980.3473
Christine Purse, chris@ignite.bz or
Mimi Rossi, mimi@ignite.bz

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