Media designer Howard Werner and associate media designer/video technician Jason Lindahl shared some of the technical aspects of the projection elements for Spider-Man: Turn Off The Dark.
- The projection system setup control is via a PRG v676 console. This system controls the moving lights and the video. During programming, the team worked from three facepanels, one for the moving light programmer, one for video programming, and one as a master. For the run of the production, there is one facepanel and one backup server.
- The media servers comprise four PRG Mbox Extreme v3 two active and two spares with auto-failover capability. These are controlled via Art-Net from the V676 console, receive live position data from encoders mounted on each of the drive winches for the traveling LED legs, and receive SMPTE timecode to lock to certain sequences where lighting, sound effects, and video all have to be in sync.
- Output is via a Barco XLM HD30 projector that is mounted at the lower balcony rail position. A custom housing provides cooling and noise reduction, and keeps the unit out of sight lines for patrons in the balcony. It projects a single HD signal over the majority of the stage, while custom masks allow any layer of video to be projected from the MBox on any one of several scenic pieces.
- 800 PRG 15mm LED tiles, 100 per leg in 20 rows of five, create eight LED legs that measure 2.5m wide x 10m tall with an overall pixel dimension of 1,280 x 640 pixels. Using a custom encoder system developed by PRG specifically for the production, the panels can travel through a virtual canvas approximately 1,500 pixels wide (from the panels all the way offstage to meeting at center). Each leg has its own dedicated processor for maximum system stability/redundancy.