Your browser is out-of-date!

Update your browser to view this website correctly. Update my browser now


News in pictures 21 July 2010

Robe and HSL cruise on the Azura; d3 and RCF set free in Scotland; Cytech is at home in Oxfordshire; Vaddio accepts Supreme Court video challenges.

Robe’s moving lights – over 120 fixtures in all, including DigitalSpot 7000DTs, have been installed into four primary entertainment areas aboard P&O Cruises’ newest state-of-the-art liner, the 3500 capacity Azura.

The lighting was specified by Carnival UK’s entertainment, sound & lighting manager Philip Yeomans, and the package was delivered via Robe UK with Blackburn-based HSL undertaking the installation and providing the ongoing technical support.

Robe lighting has been installed into four areas of the 290 metre long, 14 deck, 115,000 tonne Azura: the Playhouse Theatre, the Manhattan and Malabar lounges, and the open deck area by the forward pool.

The Playhouse
In the Playhouse, they needed a dynamic and flexible house lighting system that would be able to light a diversity of different entertainment – from drama, cabaret, musicals to comedy and rock bands. Yeomans worked with Bill Haven of Nautilus Entertainment Design on the technical design for the venue, and lighting design for the different shows is created by a combination of their in house team and external theatre designers.

Robe’s ColorSpot and ColorWash 700E AT Series were chosen for their brightness and size, with 40 spots and 35 washes specified to cover all areas of the 14 m-wide stage. These are hung on overhead trusses and lighting bars.

In addition to these, there are six ColorSpot 575E ATs and 12 ColorSpot 1200E ATs, plus six Robin 300 Beams. The 575Es are attached to side stage ladders in the stage wings; their compact size is ideal for the space and their punchy output is excellent for cross stage lighting at all levels. The beams are in funky chrome housings and built into the set.

This lounge is to the aft of the ship and is used for disco/club nights in the evening as well as for cabaret shows, presentations and lectures, so the lighting has to cover all types of events.

The lighting rig consists of six Robe ClubSpot 250 CTs, four Scan 250 XTs and four ColorSpot 170 ATs. It’s designed as a small club rig that offers plenty of latitude for dancefloor effects and creating a lively ambience, which can also be used for cabarets and other stage presentations.

This is an intimate space featuring a range of events from classical piano recitals to party nights, complete with a seven-piece house band, so again the need was for a diverse system with lots of creative scope.
Yeomans chose an almost identical rig to that of Manhattan, together with a large generic rig.

Open deck
Several shows are staged up on the top deck by the pools while Azura is cruising through warm climates. Lighting here comes in the form of four ColorSpot 700E ATs and four ColorWash 700E ATs.

d3 Audio and Visual has completed the first refit of its type in a free church in Scotland at St Peters Free Church, Dundee. The design and installation company specified 10 RCF Acustica C3108W speakers and a pair of floor-mounted S4012 compact 12” subwoofers.

Some of the C3018Ws are mounted in pairs on columns along the length of the church, while others are flown above the ceiling void. d3 Audio and Visual evolved a unique mounting solution, dropping the loudspeakers down on chrome poles.

Control is via an Allen & Heath iDR8, carrying the sound up to the raked balcony, while a Soundcraft GB2 mixer, Audio Technica and Shure radio mics and QSC 4-channel amps complete the audio package.

“The requirement for the system was to deliver great acoustic reproduction of speech and music for regular Sunday services — at the same time making sure the system had a wide dynamic range to cover almost any eventuality,” said d3’s director Phil Lidstone. “The Acusticas from RCF provide impressive HF and accurate response with subs delivering the extended frequency range when required. Certainly this combination provides plenty of headroom in the system.”

Essentially the company has provided the church with a system with a wide dynamic range, which can achieve higher SPLs when required. “This enables them to follow their tradition of singing unaccompanied psalms, and at the same time stage music events which demand much more from the system.”

A large, six-bedroom family home on four floors in rural Oxfordshire is the location of a comprehensive installation of smart home technology featuring the Comfort Intelligent Home System from Cytech Europe for security and home automation.

Designed and installed in the Georgian-style property by Cyberhomes of Thame, Oxfordshire, the smart home features include a fully automated home cinema room, multi-room music system, audio and video distribution, surveillance monitoring, lighting control, intercom and access control.

“The design principles of discreet and manageable technology resulted in a superb living space with dramatic and yet useable control features and an extensive home entertainment system,” said Andy Mack of Cyberhomes.

The main house was later extended and with it the intelligent home system. Now a third stage, a detached entertainment complex built around a large swimming pool, again sees security and automation provided by the Comfort Intelligent Home System.

The entertainment complex has facilities on three floors, including a basement snooker room, a ground floor entertainment room and a first floor gym.

The entertainment room features a 50-inch plasma screen, Wii and Playstation 3 inputs, iPod dock, concealed ceiling speakers, wall-mounted keypad and integrated remote control. The TV screen is fitted inside pale wood cabinets with bookshelves and storage units beneath. In the basement snooker room there is an iPod dock and distributed audio keypad to ceiling speakers. The first floor gym has a 37-inch screen, ceiling speakers, wall-mounted keypad and integrated remote control.

The Minnesota Supreme Court, sometimes called the “court of last resort”, is Minnesota’s highest appellate court and is unlike any other in the state. As the Supreme Court plays a vital role in the constitutional system, providing efficient technology for its citizens is essential. When the Supreme Court decided to upgrade their courtrooms, they looked to Minneapolis-based audiovisual integrator, MSpace, to integrate Vaddio camera systems into Courtroom 300.

Courtroom 300 is the larger of two courtrooms used in the Minnesota Supreme Court for video recording/streaming all sessions to the Internet and local public television station, KTCA in St. Paul. The original courtroom had stationary cameras offering such low quality audio as to prompt the redesign of both the audio and video throughout the room. MSpace upgraded the court’s video system with the Vaddio ProductionView FX switcher and three WallView Pro 300 PTZ camera systems.

“Vaddio products were chosen for three reasons — a variety of camera types, their Cat. 5 cabling solution and the hands-on/hands-free control options,” explains MSpace sales engineer/designer Tom Larson. “The Minnesota Supreme Court now has improved video quality on all of the streaming and recording sessions, and video transitioning from speaker to speaker is easy and not distracting to the viewer.” Furthermore, the building is wired to support interactive video court hearings, conferences and training programs between the judicial centre and other locations throughout the state.