THE ANNOUNCEMENT IN MAY THAT GRASS VALLEY, THE THOMSON subsidiary that specializes in high-end film and TV gear, had entered the pro A/V market with its Turbo intelligent disk digital recorder was notable for several reasons. Grass Valley is the latest high-end video company to see the value in this market, but they're one of the more high-profile companies to take the plunge. The company notes in its literature that this is the first of a series of products to be unveiled under their new ProLine series, designed to “provide a complete acquisitions to production workflow for pro AV applications,” which would appear to underscore its commitment. New gear aimed at this specific market is always welcome and invariably preferable to the kind of “me-too” products rental and staging companies are too often forced to shoehorn into a project.
Grass Valley is making its big push for the Turbo at InfoComm in Las Vegas this June, no doubt one of many new pushes for new products in new markets. Indeed, there seems to be a lot of that these days. A couple of years ago, moving light manufacturer High End Systems unveiled the Catalyst media server, which built the first planks on the bridge to the convergence between lighting and video. Other lighting companies, like Martin Professional, PRG, and Green Hippo soon followed suit. Digidesign, a fixture of the recording world, last year unveiled their Venue console geared to the touring market; you can read all about that product on page 44. Now comes word that several projection companies are taking a serious look at creating new products geared to the lighting market. Looks like that bridge may soon be nearing completion.
InfoComm is one of a couple of places to see this convergent world in action, up close and personal. In addition to the usual A/V fare, this year's exhibition, to be held June 8-10, will offer a diverse group of pavilions, from digital signage and streaming media to audio and lighting and staging. You can read all about this year's event in our special InfoComm preview, a joint effort between SRO, Video Systems, and Sound & Video Contractor, on page 11.
While Infocomm gives you the view of convergence from a video perspective, ETS-LDI gives you a look at it from the lighting world. That show runs November 11-13 in Orlando; no doubt more manufacturers will be making announcements about new products for new markets at that show as well, as companies continue to jockey for position in an ever-shifting landscape.
BUT A WORD OF WARNING: CUL TIVATING TOO MANY ARTISTIC TYPES ON YOUR STAFF COULD RESULT IN HEATED BATTLES OVER CREATIVE FREEDOM. YOU MAY SOON BE HAVING AN ARGUMENT WITH YOURSELF OVER ARTISTIC DIFFERENCES. SUCH ARE THE PERILS OF THE BRAVE NEW WORLD OF CONVERGENCE.