Stagetec

has just completed a major lighting system installation in three studios at BBC Northern Ireland (BBC NI) in Belfast. BBC NI is determined to be a leader of creativity and innovation in the years ahead, and Stagetec was given a brief to design lighting control and dimming systems that would provide state-of-the-art systems for the current range of programs and also be adaptable for the future.


The Compulite Ovation, operated by Resource Manager Paul Naughton.

There are two new Compulite control systems: an Ovation 4D/RX system with remote electronics crate for the control room, and a Micron 4D for use on the studio floor. The whole installation is controlled via Ethernet, and DMX distribution has also been installed. Stagetec supplied a range of Ethernet nodes, including a custom studio floor panel incorporating a CompuLINK node with flat screen monitor, remote control and macro panels. This gives full control of the system for rigging and focusing. The control room also features a PC-driven screen and LCD projector running Compulite's CompuCAD software, that gives a graphic indication of each lighting state and aids selection and editing during plotting.

Stagetec has installed a new internally wired lighting grid with socket outlet boxes at both grid and ground levels. These are controlled from 96 channels of 2.5kW and 12 channels of 5kW Compulite CompuDIM 2000 dimming, with dual processors. A 24x2.5kW Compulite CompuRACK cabinet (recently launched at the ABTT show in London) controls the house lights. Control is via a Compulite Micron 4D desk on the studio floor with house light control via an ETC Unison system.


The Studio B custom studio floor panel, operated by Senior Vision Supervisor Gordon Bannister.

The news studio, Studio B, has been refurbished and a new digital infrastructure installed, and now offers widescreen programming for the station's news and current affairs output. Stagetec installed 120 channels of 5kW Compulite CompuDIM 2000 modular dimming in this space, with dual processors and hard power bypass switches plus remote dimmer monitoring system in the new control suite. A custom mains distribution system, also designed and supplied by Stagetec, provides remote voltage/current indication on the studio floor and in the control room, with interlocked emergency cut-out switches.

Studio 1, previously a music studio, has been transformed into a modern TV drive-in studio facility. As with Studio B, the Studio 1 installation incorporates a computerized dimmer monitoring system, custom mains distribution with remote voltage/current indication, and emergency cut-out switches. There's also a custom studio floor panel with CompuLINK Ethernet node, LCD panel, remote control and macro panels.

Studio C is a small studio used for recording links and short news inserts. As part of the Studio B/1 refurbishment, Stagetec has now installed 12 channels of Compulite CompuDIM 2000 dimming and a Zero 88 Level 12 Plus control desk for this studio.

Stagetec has worked with BBC NI for several years. Previous supplies include a number of Compulite control systems including two Sabres, two Animators, and an Animator Compact. The Studio 1/B/C installation was completed on time to a high standard, and Stagetec also fully trained the BBC operatives on the new equipment.