Lighting rigs around the world are plugging into an unprecedented mix of multimedia devices—deploying conventional lights, moving lights, LEDs, media servers, and other DMX-controlled multiparameter devices for their ambitious stage effects. ETC has designed a new generation of powerhouse consoles to handle it all, with what they’re calling Complete Control™. ETC’s Congo console, introduced in 2005, is one example. Congo combines the ease of use and technical elegance of a classic lighting control system with the feature-rich functionality of a dedicated moving lights console. Built for the speed of today’s productions, Congo features innovative Direct Select keys for shorter commands and lightning-fast results.
Answering popular demand, ETC is now introducing the next Congo solution—Congo jr—with all of the functionality of the original console, but in a smaller, compact footprint. Congo jr’s modular design packs in all the power of its big brother Congo, with identical channel and output counts, but accommodates spaces and situations Congo cannot. Congo jr fits comfortably into smaller venues like rehearsal halls, blackbox theaters, or TV studios, as well as tiny lighting booths or space-starved touring trucks. And running Congo’s potent operating software, Congo jr is a fully independent main console when portability is paramount. It is also equally adept as a convenient back-up desk to the main console in more complex broadcast or concert applications.
As part of its flexible design, Congo jr features an optional Master Playback Wing, which accesses all 40 multipurpose masters of the main console. The Master Playback Wing contains 40 faders and two LCDs in the same configuration as the Congo console, for full playback capability and complete control of all masters and Direct Selects. Modularity also means optimal convenience: attach the Master wing to the console—on either side—or locate it independently, via USB cable, for versatility as any space requires.
Congo jr boasts the same comprehensive technical specifications as Congo, starting with two DMX universes (1,024 outputs) and 3,072 channels. Output upgrades are handled in the same manner as Congo. Hardware includes Midi In/Out connections, Ethernet with full networking capabilities (supporting ETCNet2™, Net3™/ACN, Avab IPX, and ArtNet), USB, phone remote, and a work light connector with dimmer. Congo jr features a complete command and navigation keypad, and a condensed moving light/direct select section with built-in LCD and four rotary encoders with integral wheel keys. The console inserts easily into a 19” equipment rack. Cost conscious as well as space conscious, Congo jr operates with just two monitors, as opposed to Congo’s three.
Strong console family ties will provide long-term benefits for all Congo users: Congo jr’s software innovations have in turn made Congo’s functionality even better. As users update their Congo, they’ll take advantage of the strides made by Congo jr.