INFOCOMM Wrap Up: Projectors heat up an already-hot Orlando

The audiovisual community descended on steamy Orlando last week for the 2006 Infocomm exhibition. Attendance at the end of the first day topped 25,000 and more than 770 exhibitors (a record) took part. While most of the exhibits fell out of the Sports Video Group mission statement plenty didn’t. Below are some of the sports-related highlights that came out of the show.

Barco enters architectural market
Barco entered the architectural market with its first permanent LED installation on a building fa ade. The first permanent LED installation can be found on the fa ade of The Uniqa building in Vienna, Austria, fitted with 45,000 LED blocks located between the windowpanes. The LED solution comprises of Barco s MIPIX and has been fixed in a special housing which is IP65 certified. There are 2800 sections of MIPIX each of 1.3 meters long, placed end to end in pairs – making 1400 separate sections each totaling 2.6 meters long. The conceptive world of pictures with abstract and specific motives brings additional life to glass cladding of UNIQA tower,” says Ernst Morgenbesser project manager of UNIQUA. Amazingly the installation was completed in five weeks.

Christie intros 3-chip DLP projector
Christie introduces the world s first 3-chip DLP High Definition projectors with native 1920×1080 resolution at Infocomm, The Christie HD series offers the same powerful 10-bit image processing that is at the heart of Christie digital projectors. With brightness levels ranging from 5,000 to 12,000 ANSI lumens and 1,500-2,000:1 full field contrast ratio, the Christie HD series packs a wide range of power, flexibility and features. The Christie HD series includes the Christie HD12K, featuring 12,000 ANSI lumens; the Christie HD8K projector with 8,000 ANSI lumens; and an HD8K available in a Kc model, which features color correction that includes a yellow notch filter that creates greater separation between the primary colors, creating a film-like experience. All Christie HD projectors feature proprietary electronics with HD 4:4:4 capabilities and Digital Black Level contrast, which can be used with the built-in edge-blending feature.
Crestron unveils MediaManager system switchers
Crestron unveiled the new Media Processing System (MPS) Series. Media Processing Systems include the MPS-100, 200, 300 and 400. From the smallest 5×2 to the 11×7, all MPS models feature QuickMedia routing and processing, seamless system expansion, network connectivity and RoomView remote management capabilities. The four MPS models are complete MediaManager systems in a single box. Crestron integrated a 2-Series Ethernet control system, multimedia switcher, audio amplifier, balanced audio with professional DSP, mic inputs, discrete touchpanel preview out and full QuickMedia signal routing and processing. Full 12-band parametric equalization and delay and adjustable input compensation are built-into most models, eliminating the need for several external components to accomplish the same tasks.
Electrosonics raises roof at War Memorial Coliseum
Tim Eldridge of dBA Acoustics, a consulting and design services firm,
recently helped raise the roof of the Allen County War Memorial
Coliseum to allow for bigger audiences and better sound throughout. The
Allen County War Memorial Coliseum is a 13,000-seat destination for
hockey games and traveling shows since the roof was raised. The stadium
is equipped with an acoustic measurement system featuring an Earthworks
M30 microphone, SIA SmaartLive software, the TerraSonde Audio Toolbox,
and – the rig’s linchpin – the Lectrosonics TM400 wireless system for
test and measurement, which allows wireless audio. The Electrosonics
TM400 Test and Measurement System replace long cable runs between
calibrated microphone and test equipment and features 24-bit, 88.2kHz
digital signal handling for compandor-free audio. It offers 256
synthesized UHF frequencies as well as a rigid all-metal construction.

Evertz intros new modular and routing products
At Infocomm 2006, Evertz introduced their new 128×128 3Gbps ultra wide-band router into the Xenon router family. The new router accepts signals from 19.4Mb/s thru SDI (270Mb/s) and HD (1.5 Gbps) and ultimately up to WUXGA resolution (1920×1200) signal formats. Along with the RGBHV and/or DVI fiber transmitter module, it is possible to route any signal over a single link from source to destination, including individual and multisignal wall displays. Router control is possible through common protocols and also SNMP, providing a simple, interoperable interface to existing control systems.

Also new is a modular fiber-transmit and receive products to handle RGBHV and/or DVI along with KVM and USB over a single fiber. The transmitter/receiver pair comes in several formats including modular and miniature allowing the user to install them in a variety of applications.
Hitachi intros CP-X260 LCD projector
Hitachi America introduced its new CP-X260 LCD projector. The LCD has 2500 ANSI lumens of brightness, advanced connectivity and portability. It offers clarity, with XGA (1024×768) resolution and a 4:3 aspect ratio. The CP-X260 also features two RGB inputs, MyScreen/MyMemory preset options, and a remote control with Hitachi’s “MyButtons” function. The CP-X260 also features a low 34 dB noise rating (in Whisper Mode), 1:1.2 manual zoom, and digital keystone correction. Additionally, it is equipped with a security bar, Kensington security slot and transition detector (a sensor located inside the projector that recognizes when the projector has been moved.)

JVC launches Everio 3-CCD hard disk drive camcorder
The new JVC Everio G Series GZ-MG505, camcorder eliminates the need to carry tapes, and can record up to seven hours of DVD quality video. It weighs in at about a pound (510 grams) including the battery and lens cap. Its classic camcorder-style design is topped off by a 2.7-inch widescreen 16:9 LCD (1173 x660x3 effective pixels) that accurately displays native 16:9 videos while they are being shot, as well as during playback. The Everio G Series GZ-MG505 offers seven hours storage at 9 Mbps, which is close to the maximum bit rate for DVD movie quality recording, for $1,300.

Meyer Sound outfits Ben Hill Griffin Stadium
Ben Hill Griffin Stadium in Gainesville, FL, home of the University of Florida Gators football team, recently added a new high-resolution video screen at the south end zone, which is complemented by a state-of-the-art audio system from Meyer Sound. Kelly Prince of Orlando-based Pro Sound, who also supplied and installed the system, specified six MSL-6 horn-loaded high-Q main loudspeakers in a split configuration for the main system, with three cabinets covering the east seating section and the other three covering the west section. Two CQ-1 wide coverage main loudspeakers and two CQ-2 narrow coverage main loudspeakers handle the areas under the scoreboard.
A key challenge for single-source systems is attaining intelligibility at the far end of the venue, which, in the case of Griffin Stadium, is the south end of the stadium, some 500 feet from the sound system. However, Prince knew that Meyer Sound made a unique device designed expressly for this purpose: the SB-1 parabolic long-throw sound beam. Six SB-1 cabinets now assure that every game call and announcement is clearly heard in the south seating area. Six 700-HP ultrahigh-power subwoofers provide ample low-frequency reproduction.

Panasonic develops 1080p 3-chip DLP-based projector
Panasonic announced the development of a full-resolution 1080p projector for cinema applications that plans to be delivered by the fourth quarter of this year. The widescreen new projector features a new Texas Instruments 3-chip DLP imager that produces 10,000 lumens of brightness and full 1920×1080 resolution. The projector delivers a theater-quality 4000:1 contrast ratio with Panasonic’s exclusive Dynamic Iris, which switches the aperture according to the input signal. Panasonic’s Dynamic Iris technology quickly fine-tunes the lamp output with exceptional speed, resulting in highly accurate real-time control of the projector light output. Standard features on the new projector include a horizontal/vertical lens shift, a DVI input with HDCP, and LAN control with standard PJ link protocol, thereby enabling network administrators to centrally monitor the projector via LAN-based remote control over a web browser. Options will include SD-SDI and HD-SDI input boards.

Panasonic’s HVX200 runs with wolves in northern Minnesota
Nature and wildlife videographer Kevin Railsback discovered the wild side of the Panasonic s AG-HVX200 solid-state HD camcorder when he took it to northern Minnesota to shoot wolves for his new company s (Silver Phoenix LLC, with partner Juile Cox) HD stock footage library based on the HVX200 acquisition. His company is located in Fairfax, Iowa, and Bozeman, Montana. They saw my SD clips and said, you ve got to have this in HD, says Railback. The HVX200 records in 1080i and 720p in production-proven 100 Mbps and combines multiple high-definition and standard-definition formats, multiple recording modes and variable frames rates, and the vast benefits of P2 solid state memory recording in a rugged, compact design.
Railsback had been planning a trip to northern Minnesota to capture wolf footage and found -9 degree F. temperatures waiting for him north of Duluth. That wasn t listed as an acceptable operating temperature for the HVX200, he notes, so I was a bit concerned. But, he points out , there was no huge battery drain and it filmed to perfection. The only weather issue was the LCD screen started to freeze so he used the eyepiece. Railsback s camera package includes a Bogen video tripod, Chrosziel matte box and a Sennheiser ME 66 shotgun mic, boom pole and zeppelin for interviews.

Smaller, smarter Sennheiser SK 5212 body pack unveiled
Sennheiser brought the SK 5212, one of the smallest wireless microphone body-pack transmitters in its class, to Infocomm. Advanced features include infrared wireless synchronization with the company’s brand new NET 1 Network System multi-channel wireless hub. The SK 5212 can also be used with all of Sennheiser’s 3000 and 5000 series components. A sturdy metal housing keeps the mini transmitter safe and sound in the tough conditions of TV and the stage. The 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. A single AA battery ensures that the SK 5212 works reliably for six hours at its full 50mW output power. The transmitter power can be reduced to 10mW in order to adapt to the transmission conditions of different regions. The new Sennheiser SK 5212 sub-miniature wireless microphone body-pack transmitter will retail for $3,600 and is now available.

Shure exhibits new UHF-R wireless system
Engineered to save time and effort in both fixed installations and touring sound applications, Shure s UHF-R is outfitted with an advanced feature set including automatic frequency selection with group scan, infrared automatic transmitter sync, and smart menu-driven system operation facilitating quick setup times and intuitive use. It allows up to 40 preset compatible systems to be operated per band and up to 108 systems can be put to work using multiple bands. Complementing this expanded window of operation is Shure’s Advanced Track Tuning Filtering Technology, which shifts onboard RF filtering within selected frequencies to maximize both compatibility and isolation from interference. Equipped with a bitmapped LCD display providing access and control to all integral system functions, the UHF-R UR2 handheld transmitter features frequency and power lockout, and is available with a full line of Shure capsules including the SM58, SM86, SM87, Beta 58, Beta 87A, and Beta 87C.