The newest product available from VLPS is making early appearances during the Christmas season. Late in November, the newly upgraded Virtuoso® DX2 console shared the spotlight with Kelly Clarkson and Ruben Studdard on An American Idol Christmas, a one-hour Fox special featuring past contestants on the popular talent contest.

VLPS provided the lighting system on the television special, working closely with LD Kieran Healy to create a festive winter wonderland. VLPS lighting director Bryan Faris ran High End Systems’ Catalyst™ Version 3 media server with the new Virtuoso DX2. The new Catalyst V3 software enabled two separate layers of media to be displayed onto two separate LED wall feeds from a single Catalyst unit. The unique DX2’s media window, which gave Faris direct access to preview thumbnails of the media server’s content, allowed for a more efficient digital content interface for programming.

Across the Atlantic, LD Paul Guthrie is working on the Sheryl Crow European tour, which opened in London on December 7. Guthrie switched over to the Virtuoso console during Crow’s 2002 summer tour and has been using it ever since on his projects. “Last year on the tour, we had a traditional video setup with hard drive playbacks and a video switcher going out to LED walls,” Guthrie explains. “This time, I got all the footage and re-rendered the files for the Catalyst.”

The DX2 is being used on the month-long tour and its media window functionality gives Guthrie convenient access to his custom library in addition to the existing 80-plus gigabyte library on the console. The ability to preview hundreds of media files as thumbnails instead of calling up each file by scrolling through different values makes the DX2’s media window an efficient and indispensable programming tool.

The Virtuoso DX2 upgrade, available exclusively from VLPS, will be available starting January 1, 2004 for existing inventory and will be part of the build of a significant number of new Virtuoso DX2 consoles.