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Archive for June 15th, 2011

Ensemble Makes Scan Conversion Work for AV

For Pro AV, scan converters have been basically too much trouble for mostly so-so results. That was even true in broadcast where they are an unavoidable necessity. Ensemble Designs #IC2313 put the company’s scaling expertise to use on the problem and hit the mark with broadcasters with the Mitto. Now this Infocomm, Mitto gets an AV rollout with three new converters purpose-built for us. Ensemble’s Robert Nunez walks me through it. The original Mitto listed at $5500–went all the way up to 3G with features for audio delay and scaling. Too much for most of our applications. So one of the new converters drops the 3G (it’s HD) and $1600. The second converter drops the audio handles and $3000. There’s also an AV-friendly converter at a higher ($5900) price point with fiber out. If you need fiber runs consider it because it could save you on other aspects of your design.img_0229.JPG

Ensemble also tackled the ease-of-use issues–significantly you can easily grab a portion of your computer screen to redisplay, Nunez says. So overall this is a way to simplify displaying everything from Skype to HD content on another (usually bigger) screen.

Here’s the webcast on the BrightEye Mitto Scan Converter which is a pretty straightforward introduction if you can’t get on the booth to see it. This will get you started and then to read about how this translates to the ProAV market here’s the Infocomm release.

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URC Commercial Product

I sat down with URC‘s director of business development Mitchell Klein to understand more about URC’s commercial push (they are dominant at the mid-level in consumer control Klein says). A founding member of CEDIA, two-time president and long-time board member, Klein says he feels comfortable crossing over into relationships with Infocomm, and he describes what seems to be a committed effort by URC to earn a place in our industry. I think it’s a good time for more control options in the market especially at the mid-level price point. I think consumer control experience is more relevant in our industry now than in the past, especially as more people grow up controlling things from their personal electronic devices.

Klein obviously thinks so too: the company is on their third Infocomm, the first with shipping product (#IC1411): a remote IP network-based SaaS asset management system that came out of a Spinoza partnership, and a touchpanel. Klein says the company is actively hiring and signing up dealers. He’s built out a Dealer University (which awards CEDIA renewal units and soon will do the same with Infocomm RUs Klein says). He’s launched a partner program to insure interoperability with companies such as DVX. For more about the asset management system see URC’s Infocomm release.

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The editors of Sound & Video Contractor post live from InfoComm as the news happens. Check back several times a day for the latest industry news, reports from press conferences, and product introductions.

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