"Weird" might be the best way to describe this year's PLASA show, held September 7-10 at Earls Court in London. Maybe it was because it opened just months after the departure of the Professional Light and Sound Association's longtime chief executive officer John Offord; more likely it was because the show began just one day after Princess Diana's funeral. Regardless of the reason, there was an odd vibe on the show floor, as exhibitors and attendees dealt with unchecked noise, heat (like most of London, there's apparently no air conditioning in Earls Court), and other controversies.
Still, PLASA claims that more than 13,000 people came to check out the equipment on display at over 340 booths, so it must be doing something right. Though there were some interesting new items unveiled for the first time, most manufacturers continued the trend of tweaking and improving existing products. What follows is a selective look at some of the new and improved products that were on display.
ABSTRACT DESIGN TO LIGHT First time anywhere: VR Series intelligent luminaires are constructed entirely from formed plastic. The VR8, the first of a four-model range, features a full digital display function that indicates performance parameters such as the hour usage of the 150W discharge lamp, and full mode select for the unit. The color and gobo wheels both have 360-degree rotation, and the trapezoid color system produces seamless movement between 12 dichroic colors. Abstract is developing a Pantone color-coating system for the VR range.
A.C. LIGHTING First time anywhere: Accessories for the Wholehog II including the Hog Unit, a rack-mounted show replay unit that allows full playback of any show programmed on a Wholehog II console, and the Overdrive Box for the expansion of the Wholehog II's DMX channels from 2,048 to 3,584 in increments of 512 channels; the Gelstream 5" color changer for ETC Source Four, Altman Shakespeare, and other small-aperture fixtures; the Vision PARshell, a kit to upgrade existing PAR fixtures to meet CE safety requirements; the Jands DD-8 DMX splitter and distributor; the Jands Touring Dimmer Rack for up to six Jands HP12 dimmers; and the Chroma-Q Broadway color changer for small-aperture theatrical fixtures.
ADB New to PLASA: The Memopack 30, a high-density portable digital dimmer pack configured as 12x3kW or 6x5kW, and Micropack 25, a compact 12x2.3kW digital dimmer for 19" rack mounts for touring or fixed installations; Ingenio, a new luminaire with trichromatic color generator, an optical dimmer for HMI sources, and optical diffuser, all controlled by DMX; and the HF remote controller for the Vision 10 console.
ALTMAN STAGE LIGHTING First time anywhere: The Micro Ellipse Plus takes the standard housing of the company's Micro Ellipse and extends it by 21/2", then adds a small power supply housing separate from the unit and the Philips MasterColor(TM) lamp. The unit can handle 70-150W, 120, 220, or 240V, and has a lamp life of 9,000 hours. Altman expects to begin marketing the power supply separately by the beginning of next year.
ANYTRONICS LTD. First time anywhere: Light Wire(TM) flexible lighting is a cold light source about 2.5mm in diameter. It consists of a center core of phosphor-coated copper wire with a spiral wrap of two fine wires covered in two layers of protective plastic outer sheath, and comes in five colors.
ARTISTIC LICENCE First time anywhere: Grand-Master Flash! is a new software product that promises to turn a PC into a sophisticated lighting desk. The DMX-Split! is the company's first DMX splitter. The DMX-Relay is a new addition to the rack mount solutions range; it provides 24F freer changeover relay contacts with DMX512 control. The MIDI-DMX can operate as either a MIDI-to-DMX512 or DMX512-to-MIDI translator, making all possible data interchangeable. Micro-Scope IIa, a new version of the company's Micro-Scope II, incorporates an enhanced flicker finder, a display backlight for under-stage work, and a manufacturer-specific lamp library which allows the simple testing of automated luminaires.
AVAB TRANSTECHNIK First time anywhere: AVAB's new Tiger lighting console in the Safari family (in between the high-end Panther and smaller Lynx) with DMX, 24 master controls, crossfade function, and DMX to control color changers and moving lights; and the Zoo Multimedia control system, which runs lights, sound, video, and special effects from a central lighting console.
New to PLASA: Transtechnik's range of lighting products, including the compact Presto console with 160 circuits; the Focus console with 512 channels to control up to 2,048 dimmers; the T20-M compact console with 120 channels (expandable to 999); the FS90 radio remote control system for lighting fixtures; and the PS90 DMX-controllable spotlight yoke.
AVENGER New to PLASA: The Conductor computer-based show control system that uses cards for DMX/lighting, MIDI/sound, etc. Cues come from any pre-programmed source: a light, an infrared beam, the stage manager, or an instrument. The Conductor system is being used on Joe, a new musical in Amsterdam, to synchronize all the technical systems, including stage lifts and full-size airplanes.
AVOLITES First time anywhere: The Azure 2000 console, with 200 dimmer channels and 10 submaster playback feeders, uses Pearl console technology and can use Pearl disks. It is designed for the nightclub and industrials markets and has a fluid-proof case; the Pearl 2000 is a variation on the two-year-old Pearl console with 48 channels, four DMX lines, theatrical editing, and playback; the Visualizer stage visualization system uses variable "smoke" to see lights and runs on Windows 95 or Microsoft NT; and the Art 36, a compact, modular touring dimming system with 36 channels and 12 channels of moving lights distribution.
BYTECRAFT First time anywhere: The Medusa Automatic Patch System for stage automation systems links a large number of motors to a small number of variable-speed drives; and the Argonaut 2000, a compact, portable stage automation controller with touch screen.
CCT New to PLASA: The Helios range has been redesigned to incorporate an electronic ballast built into the lamphouse.
CELCO Company news: Celco held a dealer conference for 40 people from 20 countries, including Japan, Australia, and South Africa. They were shown prototypes for new products and asked for feedback to help in final design processes.
CEREBRUM LIGHTING New to PLASA: The DMXEye automated show recorder, from XTC Lighting, can record a complete show and store it in internal memory along with the times at which the lighting cues occurred. New from Labino are a pair of UV luminaires, a spotlight and a flood, that can be used with the Mad Lighting range of luminaires, which are now designed with colorful plastic housing that reflects UV light.
CLAY PAKY/PULSAR Company news: Pulsar announced that all its products meet both the EMC Directive for Interference and the Low Voltage Directive for Safety, allowing them to carry the CE mark. The Stage Scan won the 1997 PLASA award for product excellence. Also, Pulsar announced numerous improvements and updates to various products, especially the Rack pack, a range of dimmers and switch packs in line with the latest standards. A major software rewrite is planned for Scan luminaires.
COE-TECH First time anywhere: New from TAS are two moving-yoke fixtures, the CF 6, a color fresnel that uses an MSR 575/2 lamp, and Kompact Power 6 and KP12, which are equipped, respectively, with MSR575/2 and 1,200W MSR/sa lamps.
COMPULITE New to PLASA: The Ovation 4D lighting controller has Pentium-oriented hardware coupled with a real-time operating system that lets you control up to 2,048 DMX channels. These channels can be flexibly assigned to control 1,536 dimming channels (including scrollers) and 250 moving lights or other DMX-controlled devices. The Micron 4D has many of the same features, but is smaller (with 10 faders and eight controllers/chasers). Compulite consoles now support ethernet communication.
DECOUPE First time anywhere: The Tivoli digital dimmer with DMX512 for theatrical and architectural applications, available in wall-mount or rack-mount. Also, the Baby Copernik 12V 35W display or architectural fixture, with six dichroic filters.
New to PLASA: The Margot 2,000/ 2,500W halogen luminaire with gobo holder and six-way manual color changer.
DESISTI LIGHTING UK First time anywhere: Remington model PARs with 200W, 400W, and 575W lamps complement the Italian manufacturer's line of television and location lighting i nstruments.
DHA LIGHTING First time anywhere: David Hersey's company used PLASA to launch DHA Direct, a new service intended to complement Rosco's long-established network of dealers and distributors. DHA Direct enables access to DHA products for customers throughout Europe and Asia direct from the company's London office, via a new website, e-mail, and ISDN facilities. The website address is www.dhalighting.co.uk.
DISCOTECH PRO LIGHT New to PLASA: The Atraxa is a low-budget product that has many of the same functions as higher-end luminaires, including six rotating and one fixed gobos, six dichroic colors attached to gobo plus white, and a rotating mirror with three-beam projection.
DOUGHTY ENGINEERING First time anywhere: The Super Lightweight Coupler is constructed from high-tensile extruded aluminum for maximum strength and has an extremely thin slotted profile. This keeps weight at a minimum, and means that the clamp can hold captive an M10 nut or hexagonal bolt head. The clamp securely fits tubes with diameters of 48-51mm and has an SWL of 75kg. The Television Overlocker is a quick-release clamp with over-center locking action; it accepts a 29mm spigot and is supplied with a captive safety linchpin. The Grip Helper consists of a 29mm spigot attached to an adjustable arm at an angle of 45 degrees. The other end of the adjustable arm is fitted with a large griphead and 29mm receiver.
ELECTRONIC THEATRE CONTROLS First time anywhere: The Obsession II control console for conventional and moving lights, first installed at Hanover Opera in Germany; the Expression 3 console, with complete moving light capabilities and encoders; the Insight 3 console with 108 submasters, moving light capabilities, and 512 channels; the CE Source Four jr Zoom with 240V long-life HPL lamp; and CE Sensor dimmer racks.
ELECTROSONIC LTD New to PLASA: The Imagestar 31K videowall processor, which drives video displays at 31kHz, including the new Slimwall 2x2 from Philips and Electrosonic's 2X View.
ELEKTRALITE First time anywhere: The CP-5 pre-programmed lighting controller includes built-in lighting shows for selected fixtures. The CP10xt universal moving light controller will control dimmers, color changers, or any device that uses DMX protocol. The CP100 universal lighting controller is designed to handle both small installs and rentals as well as large-scale projects, and incorporates an extensive lamp library and global focus.
GENI ELECTRONICS New to PLASA: The CX-5 DMX intelligent lighting controller from Lite-Puter; with 1MB of programmable memory, the product has 300 scene, 50 chase, 50 macro, and 50 learn memories.
GRAY INTERFACES First time anywhere: DMX Pathfinder LR, a new version of its older DMX Pathfinder, is a rack-mountable electronic DMX crosspoint router. It sends DMX signals from a number of inputs to various output locations, including dimmers, scrollers, and moving lights.
THE GREAT AMERICAN MARKET New to PLASA: The Mac version of the Gelfile, its database of technical and visual information on more than 1,250 color filters.
GRIVEN New to PLASA: The Spada, which produces a single narrow beam with random dancing movement; it is sound-activated via built-in microphone, and is available in 575W HMI and 24V/250W halogen versions. Also the Jump lighting and the DMX-controlled Colorway color changer, shown at SIB.
HARDWARE FOR XENON New to PLASA: High-definition lenses for Optimal Light System projectors, including 250-500mm and 500-1,000mm zooms. The company's 7,000W projectors are being used on the US and European tours of Riverdance.
HIGH END SYSTEMS/LIGHTFACTOR First time anywhere: New from High End Systems is the Technobeam(TM), which features an efficient MSD 250-2 metal-halide arc lamp source with 6500K color temperature. The product is claimed to produce unprecedented brightness and vastly improved flat field beam performance from a 250W source. The Studio Spot(TM) automated luminaire is a hard-edged beam fixture to complement the Studio Color(R) automated wash luminaire. The ES-1(TM) and EC-1(TM) automated luminaires are specifically for outdoor architectural applications where the use of the Ecodome(TM) is prohibitive or where the 370-degreex240-degree movement of the Studio Color and Studio Spot is not required.
HOWARD EATON LIGHTING LTD. New to PLASA: H.E.L.L. is now the UK agent for Light and Motion products from Austria, including Lightstick cold cathode tubes and Slimlight electro-luminescent, cuttable multi-contact film. H.E.L.L. also now handles DMX Inspect, a compact, battery-operated DMX512 transmitter, receiver, and data analyzer designed by Artistic Licence.
IES BV First time anywhere: This Dutch company launched the Powermodule series of silent IGBT dimmers (1.5kW to 10kW), which use high-power transistors to eliminate noise from lamp filaments and cables and reduce harmonic currents. Distributed by Teatro in the UK.
JAMES THOMAS ENGINEERING New to PLASA: A PAR-56 outdoor lantern and a short-throw PAR-64 outdoor lantern.
JAZZ LUMIERE First time anywhere: This new company showed the Rapier, a multi-beam motorized effect that produces an ever-changing group of moving beam shapes and colors via its internal programs. The Axis is a color/gobo changer with internal patterns that produces a combination of colors and beam shapes, scrolling, and strobing.
JEM SMOKE MACHINES First time anywhere: The Techno Fog is aimed at the DJ market but features the same standard of technology found in the larger Jem models. The product's handheld remote control offers the user an auto-timer circuit as well as a smoke density level.
JVC New to PLASA: Hughes-JVC solid-state, single-lens, large-screen Image Light Amplifier (ILA) video projectors, including a prototype of the 12K model with 7,000W xenon arc lamp. Motorized zoom lenses are available.
Company news: JVC has announced a new, compact Direct-Drive ILA projector with 1.4 million pixels and 1,000-lumen brightness.
KUNST MACCHINA First time anywhere: Behaviors Technology v1.0 is the next step in the company's integrated lighting control software, which runs on Windows NT. Features derivative off-line, playback, and large network configurations, as well as show control capability.
KUPO New to PLASA: The Mini Slide Projector, which uses 35mm slides for focusable images up to 4m (13.2') for retail and display installations; and a 650W fresnel for theatrical use.
L.E. NELSON New to PLASA: The Sink, a special lamp adapter designed to allow the use of the HX-600 family of lamps in place of HPL-575 lamps.
LAMBA First time anywhere: The PixelScan, which allows users to show custom-designed gobos by scanning in designs with any off-the-shelf PC imaging tool, such as Adobe Photoshop, then downloading them to the PixelScan luminaires. Within seconds, the new gobos are ready to use, Lamba says.
LAMPO New to PLASA: The Leader 2000 lighting unit uses a new application of an active matrix LCD panel, combined with an optic and focus and zoom functions with a high light output. It is designed to be more versatile than traditional projectors. The unit uses an MSR1200 lamp with an efficient cooling system.
LANE LIGHTING LTD. New to PLASA: The Starlite MK5, a DMX-controlled 1,200W moving-yoke profile fixture, is now for sale. Features include six-position color wheel, rotating gobo wheels, and 360-degree pan by 270-degree tilt.
LASER INNOVATIONS New to PLASA: The company's Oasis and Mirage control systems now run under Windows 95.
LE MAITRE SPECIAL EFFECTS INC. First time anywhere: The Star Hazer, a compact hazing system which requires no heat-up time, and can run 40 hours continuously from a 2.5-liter (2.65-qt.) tank.
New to PLASA: The G150 Fog Machine, seen last year as a prototype, a fully digital smoke generator with microprocessor control that is capable of continuous output.
Company news: Le Maitre is supplying the fog machines for the new Disney Magic and Disney Wonder cruise ships.
LE MARK TVS New to PLASA: Blacktak light-masking foil, which won a PLASA product award and is distributed by TMB; andthree versions of Magtape cloth tape--original, Magtape 200, and Matte 500.
LEE FILTERS New to PLASA: Lee has added 64 new gobos to its already extensive range. Also, a new color was unveiled for the show: PLASA Red, which matches the color of the PLASA logo.
LEPRECON First time anywhere: The LP-1600 control console features wide-mode operation with 24/48, 36/72, or 48/96 wide channel configuration. Proportional patch, MIDI input, and DMX output are standard.
LIGHT ENGINEERING First time anywhere: Promoscan is an intelligent scanner unit with all control electronics built in; it is designed for promotions including product launches, conferences, and exhibitions.
LIGHT PROCESSOR Featured product: The QCommander console is now available with built-in QExtender, an additional wing also available as a freestanding add-on. It provides 16 faders and flash buttons to which any desk function can be assigned.
LIGHTING INNOVATION First time anywhere: Two accessories for the ETC Source Four, the Followspot Yoke and the Balance Equalizer. Plus, a universal Remote Control Yoke to add movement to stage and television luminaires.
Company news: These products from Herman Sorger's new company will be represented in the US by City Theatrical.
LIGHTING TECHNOLOGY First time anywhere: The PAR-Fume is a smoke machine which produces high volumes of smoke from a compact housing disguised as a PAR lantern. Specifically designed for hanging, the PAR-Fume can be easily suspended and concealed within a lighting rig, which makes it useful for exhibition stands and shop window displays.
LIGHTMASTERS UK New to PLASA: The 2500 XL from F.A.L. features a dual condenser lens system and high-reflectivity parabolic reflector, a new mirror drive system for smooth linear mirror movement at all speeds, seven dichroic colors plus white with bi-color positions, and a color temperature conversion filter for 3200K.
LITESTRUCTURES New to PLASA: New rigging/trussing products include the following: Masterlite and Boxlite are manufactured from 50.8mm tube on centers of 250mm and 300mm (the products come in different shapes). Shoplite is a lightweight aluminum system designed with shop interior and window illumination in mind. And with Livelite, Midi series straight sections can now be supplied with an internal mains mower, allowing wireless connection of a wide range of luminaires.
LITTLITE First time anywhere: The RLX Racklite(TM) for DJs and sound or lighting engineers accommodates dual Littlite XRL detachable gooseneck lamps and a front-panel dimmer to control the brightness of the 5W halogen lamps.
LSC ELECTRONICS New to PLASA: The DNA (Distributed Network Advantage) line of DMX components can be arranged in varying formats to suit a wide range of applications.
LX DESIGNS First time anywhere: Lx Controller and Lx Generic PC-based lighting controllers with software to control lamp intensity, color, gobos, and positions of fixtures; Lx Active provides DMX channels for each fixture.
LYCIAN STAGE LIGHTING New to PLASA: The SuperStar 2.5, billed as the most powerful HMI-type followspot built today, with a long-life, 2,500W, single-ended HMF/MSR metal-halide lamp, mogul bipost socket for easy lamp replacement, and 5600K color temperature, among other features.
M&M First time anywhere: A new generation of Rainbow scrollers. The 6" Pro is designed specifically for use with high-performance 650W lanterns such as the ETC Source Four and Altman Shakespeare and offers up to 33 colors, scrolling from end to end in 2.9 seconds. The 12" Pro is a new high-performance color changer which fills the gap between the 8" and 15" models. Intended for use on standard 2k theatre lanterns, the 12" Pro offers up to 25 colors with smooth color changes. The two four-pin male/female XLR connectors can be mounted for connecting to the rear or the base of the unit.
MA LIGHTING First time anywhere: The Grand MA is the latest console from MA, and is designed to handle bigger shows than the company's other products. It features 2,048 control channels for simultaneous control of conventionals, scrollers, and moving lights. The three full-color TFT touch displays, with their adjustable panel, offer control and multiple displays for group and preset operations, interactive output display, and different ways of cue listing.
MARTIN PROFESSIONAL First time anywhere: The MAC 500, the latest entry in the Martin MAC range of automated luminaires, is a moving-head profile spot. Features include two motorized color wheels with 14 dichroic colors and four dichroic CTC filters, along with two motorized gobo wheels with five interchangeable, indexed rotating gobos and nine fixed gobos. The MAC 500 can produce a maximum beam angle of 15 degrees.
New to PLASA: The MAC Dome is a protective housing for MAC luminaires, to allow their use in architectural applications. The 2518 controller is a dedicated DMX unit for smaller applications, to be used with the Martin Destroyer, Punisher, Roboscan 812, and Robocolor III/II effects and dimmer packs. The Fiber Source Q150 is a dedicated light generator for fiber-optic applications; using a 6,000-hour 150W lamp, a single Fiber Source can accept up to 300 1mm fibers. The Magnum 1000 smoke machine produces a large amount of smoke. Upgrade software for MAC 500s and 600s can be downloaded via the internet into the memory of the company's new BlackBox using a Windows 95-based PC; via the serial link, the BlackBox can then upload the new software to each MAC 500 and 600.
MDG FOG New to PLASA: A DMX interface that allows all MDG fog machines to be controlled by the lighting console. All MDG fog machines now have the self-cleaning APS (automatic purging system) feature which forces C02 through the units to keep them clean and reduce maintenance.
MORPHEUS LIGHTS New to PLASA: The XL Fader color system incorporates three subtractive color scrolls with progressive saturation. It offers over a million colors with smooth color fades at any speed desired. The S Fader has these attributes and is designed for 4" ellipsoidal lighting instruments.
Company news: The M Fader is the new name for the ColorFader color system.
NJD First time anywhere: The RAP 100 and RAP 250 provide an inexpensive way of projecting a company's logo or brand onto any convenient surface. Also new are the Chaos, which mimics an intelligent Datamoon-type effect, and the Psycho auto scanner, which mimics the appearance of intelligent lighting. Both, however, are totally automatic and require only a mains supply to work.
NU-LIGHT SYSTEMS First time anywhere: Not yet named is a product billed as the smallest smoke machine ever--it is 2" square. Nu-Light also handles laser products and lighting instruments from the Italian company LA Novalight.
PANI New to PLASA: A remote zoom/focus lens controlled by DMX from the lighting console that can be retrofitted to existing projectors at the factory, and a slide-patching machine with snap-together plastic frame to reduce slide-making time.
Company news: The new National Theatre of Tokyo has 60 Pani projectors, purchased through Toshiba, its Japanese distributor.
PCM New to PLASA: Gis Speedy, a fast-speed (32m/minute [1.2mph]) low-noise hoist, designed for lifting and moving scenery and flats.
Company news: PCM is the exclusive European distributor for CM Lodestar motors.
PROGRAMMI & SISTEMI LUCE New to PLASA: The FollowSpot 1000 is designed for theatre, mobile, and stage use; a version with a color changer features six colors. The Professional FollowSpot offers seven colors and uses a 575W GX9.5 discharge lamp.
ROSCO LABORATORIES New to PLASA: The Horizon software system for Windows 95, which combines channel and cue displays with computer icons and symbols in a lighting control program; Intelligent Fog System units from Rosco/ETI that have programmed cleaning cycles for use in long-running shows and theme park installations; and 16 new E-Color effects colors, two new CalColors, and three new Supergel colors.
Company news: Michael Hall, founder of Rosco UK, is set to retire at the end of 1997. He will remain a consultant.
RYGER ELECTRONICS First time anywhere: The Tinyscan, billed as the "smallest scanner at PLASA 97." Its features include eight gobos, eight colors, 100W lamp, stepper motors, DMX control, and front surface mirror. The Tinyscan+ has 10 gobos and eight trapeziform colors.
SAGITTER New to PLASA: The Infinity Live Zoom 1200, a moving-mirror luminaire for live performance that Sagitter says can reproduce any effect from any luminaire. Features include 5600K color temperature, double-coated combined lenses, a programmable remote focusing system, and a zoom system that performs apertures of 16-28 degrees.
SGM ELECTRONIC LIGHT New to PLASA: The Giotto 1.2 moving-head wash projector features an MSR 1,200W lamp, an electronic ballast with automatic universal voltage selection, flicker-free beam, and longer lamp life. The ColorDynamic 100 special effects projector features projections composed by animated beams similar to fractal images realized by computers. The Displayer 250 graphic projector is a standalone unit designed for the projection of logos, images, and indications. Also on hand was the Flasher DMX 1.5 professional strobe flash generator.
SLICK SYSTEMS INTERNATIONAL First time anywhere: Nova Beam is Slick's latest addition to its trussing range. It is a 50cm square truss, manufactured from high-grade 6082-T6 aluminum alloy, and comes in .5m, 1m, 2m, 3m, and 4m truss lengths.
THE SMOKE COMPANY New to PLASA: High-power, portable British smoke machines: the Power Fog Jazz II low-cost smoke machine for the small mobile DJ market, and Power Fog Max for larger mobile DJs and clubs. Both are CE-approved and available in a variety of colors.
STAGE TECHNOLOGIES First time anywhere: Nomad! Control System offers portable automation control from a touch-screen desk. The system supports multiple users with up to 16 desks linked together. Ten Nomad! consoles and three network servers will be installed at the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden.
STARLITE First time anywhere: The new Stardraw Professional, the latest in the Stardraw CAD software series. Features of the CD-ROM-based, Windows 95 or NT platform program include: 3D drawings of stage set designs, light plots, etc., to be generated in real time, text capability, and 3D mode. Logos can be viewed on any surface and manipulated in real time. Compatible with Stardraw 2D and 3D files as well as DXF files (including AutoCad R.14).
STRAND LIGHTING New to PLASA: The Brio zoom coolbeam variable-angle luminaire is offered in two versions: 18-30 degrees and 25-50 degrees. The Brio's EOS coated glass dichroic reflector provides high reflectivity of visible light together with strong transmission of the near infrared spectrum, all of which is said to lead to very precise shuttering and sharp and positive gobo projection. Other new developments include the Quartet Mk2 range, an upgrade of the Quartet 650 spotlight introduced in 1992, and the latest addition to the Quartzcolor Bambino range, the Bambino 500, a compact fresnel spotlight that replaces the Mizar.
Company news: Philippe Marc has been appointed marketing manager for Strand. Ivan Myles has been appointed general manager of the North European trading division. Colin Cuthbert will now handles sales in the South of England. And Bob Abecera is the new business manager for France.
STRONG INTERNATIONAL First time anywhere: 220-240V single-phase European 7kW ballast from Xenotech, sold as a package with 7kW xenon lights.
Company news: Strong International, which now owns Xenotech, has also purchased Skytracker of America.
STUDIO DUE New to PLASA: The Live Pro 1200 motorized spotlight uses a 1,200W discharge lamp with short-arc (Osram Sylvania or Philips) which reaches maximum luminosity through a double optic system.
SUPERSTAR LIGHTING New to PLASA: The Rotary Superlaser has the same effects as the company's Superlaser, but reflects through a front mirror to move 360 degrees.
TEATRO New to PLASA: Colourbox-2 mixes and crossfades between six color or diffusion filters to provide more than 20 different variations, allowing for immediate access without scrolling through a sequence of colors. Versa-Disc is an effects disc and color changer in one unit.
TMB New to PLASA: The Cyberlight(R) weathercover to protect the instruments on concert tours; and the Pro Power touring distribution system in British format.
Company news: TMB is the exclusive European distributor for City Theatrical products, including barndoors for the ETC Source Four.
TOMCAT Featured products: The company's full line of structural aluminum trussing, lighting support, and outdoor roof systems.
TRIPLE E New to PLASA: The UniClamp is designed to allow technicians to locate and move luminaires and speakers easily on rigging. It can be used on rigging bars up to 50mm; it closes in one simple action, and a safety pin is inserted to prevent the clamp from opening. Four wheels set into the top of the clamp allow fixtures to be wheeled along the bar into position, where the UniClamp is locked securely into place using a conventional thumbscrew.
UNITEK DISPLAYS LTD. First time anywhere: The Megascreen, a large video screen with LED rather than CRT-based technology, has high pixel density, high resolution, and is bright enough for outdoor use. It won a PLASA product award.
VARI-LITE EUROPE Company news: The firm was recently awarded the British Standards ISO9002 Quality Management standard "without hesitation" by the National Quality Assurance assessment team. Also on display was A Different Light, a new book of concert photography by Lewis Lee. The book is a memorial to Kirby Wyatt, one of Vari-Lite's founders, and all proceeds from it will be donated to AIDS charities.
WHITE LIGHT New to PLASA: Source Four HQI adapts ETC's fixture to use a 150W HQI discharge lamp which offers 9,000-hour lamp life in 3000K or 4000K color temperature for architectural installations; The Wave FX optical effects projector, shown in prototype last year, is now available and can be used for rolling waves, undersea, fluttering flags, and other effects.
Company news: White Light has taken over the distribution of the Toccata fixture (previously manufactured for Strand) with 2,500W tungsten or 700W discharge lamp options. The company also represents the Morpheus M Fader, Devon Glass filters, and L&E products in the UK.
WYBRON New to PLASA: The Goboram is a combined gobo changer, indexer, and rotator in one, which allows users to get more from their stationary lights. It is designed specifically to work with ETC Source Four and Altman Shakespeare 600 ellipsoidals. The Forerunner is billed as the most affordable color changer available. The 7" version is designed to fit PAR-64s and most 6" and 8" ellipsoidals. The 4" version slides onto all Source Four and Shakespeare 600 lights, as well as compact ellipsoidals.
ZERO 88 New to PLASA: The Sirius 250 and 500, billed as the next generation of moving-light controllers. Features include up to 4,000 memories; a range of fully programmable chases or sound-driven effects; 4 Wheel Drive(TM), which provides fingertip control of parameters; fixture personality file with over 230 fixture types, and CueLine(R) interactive software.