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Archive for October, 2014

Avolites Sapphire Touch controls over 600 LEDs in Paines Plough’s Roundabout Theatre

30th October, 2014

UK – Avolites’ fully featured, dual wide screen Sapphire Touch console is controlling unique ceiling panels of LEDs in theatre company Paines Plough’s portable Roundabout Theatre. Premiering at this summer’s Edinburgh Festival Fringe, the theatre has since popped up in towns across the UK.

Lighting programmer Peter Small specified the Sapphire Touch to program, control, and pixel map the 627 LEDs in the complex panels built into the touring venue’s roof.

“The Sapphire Touch is excellent for programming Roundabout because of its speed – a lot of the console’s features and hardware come together to allow this but a few that stand out are the large, bright, responsive touch screens, the 45 motorised faders (all electronically labeled) as well as the very well laid out programming section,” says Small. “It also has advantages for us such as being able to handle the 13 universes we require onboard, without external processors, and having an inbuilt UPS backup power supply which enables us to quickly move the console around to different positions without needing to reboot.”

The Roundabout uses only the LEDs to light the performances, with no ‘regular’ fixtures. There are nine triangular roof panels, which surround a central pinnacle panel. Each triangle is packed with 9 RGBW (Red, Green, Blue, White) and 36 WW+CW (Warm White and Cool White) LEDs, and the centre circle carries 84 RGBW pixels and 108 WW+CW LED light sources.

“Programming such a large quantity of LED with a smaller console would mean that I had to page around different screens to see the information and grab hold of lights and manipulate them,” continues Small. “I also wouldn’t have had such a well spaced or fully populated programming section, meaning I would have needed more menus to get around. With the large screens on the Sapphire Touch, as well as having the option for two external ones, I’m able to layout one or two screen setups and not have to change them – I can see all the information I require at a glance significantly speeding up the process.”

When Small began working on the project, he realised he would need a number of modifications and customisations to the Avolites TITAN software to complement The Roundabout’s unique lighting.

“I spoke to Avolites Support to explain my requirements and they were a godsend – we made significant developments in Pixel Mapping to map the special LED layout at The Roundabout, and we modified the behavior of a few functions, adding more options for channel control or updating cues,” explains Small. “Avolites has been fantastic – they quickly made the changes so it became effortless to be able to lay out all 700 LEDs into the complex layout that is Roundabout. Working with the Avolites team was a dream come true – an office of developers listening to what you need a console to achieve for a unique project!”

With 168 seats arranged in the round, The Roundabout is an intimate, dynamic and socially democratic space. From the outset the design approach has been holistic. Conceived by Paines Plough’s artistic directors James Grieve and George Perrin, Roundabout has been designed and delivered by scenic designer Lucy Osborne, lighting designer Emma Chapman and specialist effects and lighting designer Howard Eaton, with technical and space planning consultation from Charcoalblue and acoustics consultation from Gillieron Scott Acoustic Design.

Philips Entertainment wins two PLASA 2014 Innovation Awards

30th October, 2014

UK – Philips Vari-Lite’s VL4000 Spot and Philips Strand Lighting’s Emergency DMX Bypass Switch have both won a PLASA Innovation Award 2014.

GM PLS Entertainment Group at Philips Lighting Richard Schmit picked up the award for the VL4000 Spot from PLASA Governing Body chair Ed Pagett at a glittering ceremony presented by PLASA. Philips Selecon and Strand Lighting Product Segment Manager Bill Richards accepted the award for the DMX Emergency Bypass Switch, which was also presented by Ed Pagett.

Every year, PLASA recognises products that demonstrate progress, through attributes like a new style of thinking, an improvement in technical practice, new technology, materials or techniques, or an improvement in safety. The entries were considered by an expert judging panel comprising Tim Atkinson, Scott Burges, Jonathan Burton, Richard Cadena, Jenni Harris, Tapio Ilomaki, Steve Moles, Nick Read, Ben Rogers and Ed Manwaring.

The judges said: “The VL4000 Spot is a great one-head solution to the age-old question of ‘Which automated lights should I keep in inventory?’ It solves a lot of problems for hire companies by providing a range of features and functionality. The judges were impressed by its colour animation wheel, the ‘intuitive timing’ feature, the quietness of the studio mode, the multi-point connections that allow it to be hung at various angles to the truss, and its overall performance.”

Moving onto the Philips Strand Lighting Emergency DMX Bypass Switch, the judges said: “The judges feel that the Philips Strand Lighting Emergency DMX Bypass Switch addresses an important safety issue that have previously been overlooked. By providing fault-tolerant DMX for emergency lighting situation, it enhances the safety of venues and provides reassurance during emergency situations. It’s a well-designed turnkey solution for using DMX in an emergency system.”

The VL4000 Spot offers an array of exciting features, including high-resolution optics, which ensure remarkable centre-to-edge focusing and an unprecedented contrast ratio, and a 5:1 zoom covering an amazing 9 to 47 degrees without sacrificing output or clarity.

The VL4000 Spot also boasts an entirely new colour mixing system, which is ultra smooth whether operating in a slow fade or instant snap, as well as variable CTO colour temperature correction and dual five-position colour wheels. The dual opposing fixed colour wheels achieve unique colour effects, providing a multitude of combinations.

With its standard output of 33,000 lumens output and an ultra quiet 25,000 lumens Studio mode, the VL4000 Spot luminaire is the ideal tool for creating dynamic and useful lighting on any stage. It’s also incredibly easy-to-use with intuitive DMX mapping and its battery-backed full-colour LCD display.

Triple E and Rose Brand motor into LDI 2014

30th October, 2014

USA – Track systems supremo Triple E is teaming up with its long-time exclusive North American distributor Rose Brand to exhibit its array of industry-leading products at LDI Las Vegas.

Triple E and Rose Brand will join forces on booth #1249 at the Las Vegas Convention Center from 21-23 November to showcase Triple E’s combined chain-driven ERAIL system, plus its full range of tracks known for their simple design, rugged construction and ease of installation in entertainment applications.

“Together with Rose Brand we’ve been developing the American market for Triple E systems for well over a decade now – and following the introduction of ERAIL, the SDRIVE motor, and the new TDRIVE motor for Unitrack and Unibeam, business is increasing,” says David Edelstein. “The simple plug and play motors and easy-to-install tracks are appealing to a host of production companies now specifying Triple E’s products Stateside. So, naturally, we’re inviting everyone to visit us on Rose Brand booth #1249 at LDI to discover what all the fuss is about!”

Rose Brand – which has offices in New Jersey and California – is a leader in production supplies for entertainment, schools, events, exhibitions and houses of worship and carries the majority of Triple E products.

“We’re thrilled to again be able to demonstrate the Triple E product line and to show attendees the quality engineered into these products,” says Mark O’Brien, Director of Technical Services at Rose Brand. “The North American market continues to discover Triple E’s robust product line, so it’s an exciting time. The successful Unibeam and Chainbeam offer a versatile design with high load capacity that is desirable in the entertainment industry. Also, the SDRIVE, TDRIVE, and TDRIVE HD offer a great choice of easy to use curtain track motors at great prices.”

Rose Brand continues to report increases in both interest and sales of Triple E’s tracks and motors.

“Demand for TDRIVE HD is growing as more people discover this plug and play, heavy duty curtain motor that offers a compact, easy to use design,” adds O’Brien. “And with the Triple E tracks and motors offering quiet operation, easy assembly, and heavy duty capacity, what’s not to like?”

David Edelstein, Mark O’Brien, and the Triple E products will be on booth #1249 at the Las Vegas Convention Center from 21-23 November.


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