Existing counterweight sets can be automated using PowerAssist™ winch. Specifically designed for retrofitting existing counterweight rigging systems, it can be used to automate just a few sets or a complete rigging system. This eliminates both the need to handle counterweights and the concerns associated with out of balance sets. Fixed speed units are available for motorizing lighting sets, shell ceilings, and other utility sets. Variable speed units allow automation of scenery sets, providing a complete range of dynamic movement. For smaller systems, basic push-button controls are included on the face of the winch. Alternatively, the SceneControl 500 console offers the ability to program cues.
RC4 Motor Controllers
The new RC4 receivers, intended for motorized props and set pieces, have built-in motor controllers. The RX4-FD friction-drive controller directly connects to two DC motors and responds to RC4 Wireless control channels for speed, steer, and direction. Steering all the way to either extreme will spin the piece on center. The RX4-SERVO controller drives one DC motor and optional brake and includes two limit switch inputs and a rotary-encoder input. Using the encoder for feedback, the controller positions the target machine or system at any desired location. A single (8-bit) or double (16-bit) control channel sets position. Both the FD and the SERVO controllers use the RC4-MSS Motion Safety System, ensuring that any fault in the control circuit will stop the remote unit. The RC4-HH “blank” handheld controller contains both an MSS sender (a component of the safety system) and a buffered control-voltage (CV) input board with screw terminal connections. The user can mount any combination of knobs, sliders, selectors, or switches on the top face and wire them to the terminals. The HH connects to the RC4 transmitter via the CV input.
Theatre Management Tools
Production Assistant stage management software is a database system designed to streamline the workflow typical in every theatrical production. The system runs on the Windows XP platform and is composed of four basic modules. Local Data is for contacts, productions, venues, and local procedures. Script Data holds the fundamental structure of the show. Production includes schedules, prop and set movements, cues, rehearsal and show reports, etc. The final module, Reports, includes over 100 available reports such as schedules, contact sheets, and dressing rooms assignments.
Source Four® Field Angle Fixtures
Three new Source Four field-angle fixtures are available in 14°, 70°, and 90° versions. The Source Four 14° is designed for 40' to 60' distances: intermediate throws such as balcony-rail and other front-of-house positions. The Source Four 70° and 90° field-angle units are designed for ultra-short throw challenges: restricted trim heights, low dance-lighting positions, scenic washes, and pattern projections from close distances. Beyond theatre applications, these new field angles can also be used in meeting rooms, retail environments, and special event spaces. They will also be available in HID versions for architectural applications, benefiting from a 12,000-hour long-life high intensity discharge lamp. In addition to a standard black finish, the units will be available in white, silver, and custom colors.
The new Palette family of consoles includes classicPalette, presetPalette, and subPalette. The first is a classic memory console with 150, 250, or 500 channels (and double those numbers of attributes), two playbacks, and 32 submasters and comes bundled with WYSIWYG Console Edition. PresetPalette is a single-scene/two-scene console designed for teaching; two versions offer 32/64 or 48/96 single/two-scene preset operation plus memory control. SubPalette features 128 submasters for hands-on control of lights, groups, effects, etc., and is designed for live shows, TV production, and tours. SubPalettes are available with 250 or 500 channels and also come with WYSIWYG Console Edition. All models feature the new graphical PaletteOS operating system, offering a range of graphical onscreen controls. The software is based on the Linux operating system; inside the desk is a USB connection system to an industrial processor with an Intel core and 40GB hard disk. The desks also feature graphical offline editors that run on Mac OS/X and Windows XP.
Vi6 Digital Console
The Vi6™ is Soundcraft's first large-format digital live sound console and a third-generation digital desk, thanks to joint development with Studer. The Vi6 is based on Studer's Vista Series and OnAir 3000 consoles and a derivation of the Vistonics™ user interface (Vistonics II™). Vistonics II utilizes the same type of touchscreen color TFT monitor with integral rotary controls and switches mounted on the glass. The console boasts an input-to-mix capacity of 64 channels mapped out on two layers under the control of 32 motorized faders. These can be assigned to 32 outputs (plus a stereo and mono mix) that can be any combination of group and aux buses. Up to 16 matrix outputs can be configured from the pool of 32 buses. Every channel strip has its respective functions simultaneously on display. Adjustment of EQ, aux levels, routing, and dynamics takes place in line with the channel, and color-coded sections are enhanced by the patented Soundcraft FaderGlow™ system. FaderGlow uses a multicolor LED with a diffuser alongside the fader track to indicate which function is active.
The M'elodie™ ultra-compact high-power curvilinear array shares the extended high-frequency response and easy-to-use rigging of the MILO family but has a smaller footprint than the MICA™ compact high-power curvilinear array loudspeaker, making it well-suited to fixed installation in theatres, ballrooms, and clubs. In larger venues, it can be used to provide downfill or sidefill for a system based on the MICA array loudspeakers, and individual units are appropriate as fill systems for under-balcony or frontfill coverage. The system provides 100° of horizontal coverage and produces maximum peak output levels up to 131dB SPL. It exhibits flat frequency and phase response over its operating frequency range of 70Hz to 18kHz in a package measuring less than 29" (73.66 cm) × 9.5" (24.13 cm) × 13" (33.02 cm) deep and weighing less than 65lbs (29.48 kg).
CueStation™ version 4.4 is programming and control software for Matrix3™. It adds new capabilities, including password protection, enhancements to the Wild Tracks™ hard disk playback option, mixer parameter chasing, improved metering, additional control mapping functions, and more efficient screen layouts. The system provides a complete set of functions for audio show control, all of which can be controlled via an extensive cue list system or changed manually in real time. The cue list system stores any or all settings available in the system into cues, which are assembled into lists triggerable by timecode, manually (by an operator) or from an external control system. Password protection allows users to selectively protect the system configuration, mixer settings, cues, and menu commands. Separate passwords can be applied for different groups of controls.
The SK 5212 is being touted as the smallest professional bodypack transmitter in the world, according to Sennheiser. Its switching bandwidth of 36MHz is freely selectable in the entire UHF range from 450 to 960MHz, and the transmitter frequency can be set in 5kHz steps. The transmitter power can be reduced to 10mW in order to adapt to the transmission conditions of different regions. It filters out wind or handling noise with its two-stage low-cut filter (60 and 120Hz). With an input sensitivity that is adjustable in 1dB steps between -30 and +40dB, it can be individually adapted for various sound sources, volumes, and applications.