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InfoComm 2018 preview: audio

Both on the show floor and in the demo rooms, there's plenty to occupy attendees with an audio interest – including a number of demonstrations of immersive audio

In our second online preview of InfoComm 2018, we’re focusing on highlights from audio manufacturers.

Alcons Audio will once again be teaming up with immersive audio specialist Astro Spatial Audio. In an acoustically optimised demo room, the two companies will showcase the possibilities of high quality, object-based immersive audio. Hourly demonstrations – which promise to ‘deliver the ultimate in clarity and coverage’ – will feature Astro’s 3U rack-mountable SARA II Premium Rendering Engine, used in combination with Alcons CRMS/CRMSC SR cinema reference monitor systems and the new VR5 ultra-compact versatile monitor.

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Astro Spatial Audio is also teaming up with Martin Audio for the latter’s ‘Sound Adventures’ 3D immersive sound experience. The demo will showcase core experiences including movable sound effects and mixes in real time and in full 3D, electronically shaping the venue with different acoustic properties and extending the stereo image for the audience.

“Martin Audio loudspeakers with Astro Spatial Audio processing are utilising nearly 30 patents to unite the audience in a fully 3D immersive sound field. Moreover, it does so without audible artefacts and provides a solution that is more realistic for the audience,” comments Dom Harter, Martin Audio managing director.

Renkus-Heinz will unveil several new product lines, including the new IC-Live X series of steerable arrays, which offer greater power density, higher output and simple integrated hardware. The Acoustic Source Multiplier (ASM) waveguide allows the HF section to be coaxially mounted and reduces apparent source spacing by an additional 50%. The company is also introducing the new DC Series Directivity Control vertical column speakers, beginning with the DC12/2, a self-powered column speaker with 12 2in full-range drivers, 12 amplifier/DSP channels, and predefined, user-selectable presets. And in its demo room, the company will partner with TiMax to demonstrate its Immersion Zone spatial reinforcement and immersive audio experience.

Eastern Acoustics Works (EAW) will be showing two new RADIUS products, the RSX212L line array module and RSX18F subwoofer. These utilise EAW’s proprietary Focusing and Dyno technologies to deliver ‘immaculate’ impulse response throughout the coverage area even at the highest output levels. The accompanying EAWmosaic application tackles prediction, control and monitoring. EAW’s Resolution software can also be used for prediction of all Radius products. The RSX212L line array includes array self-detection via on-board infrared sensor and accelerometers, enabling EAW’s OptiLogic technology to pre-optimise the array to reduce set-up and tuning time. The new RSX18F offers automatic cardioid functionality, in stacks of two or greater, via OptiLogic.

InfoComm 2018 sees the US launch of Powersoft’s Duecanali 804 and 4804 amplifiers – which join the Duecanali 1604, which debuted last year. The Duecanali 804 offers 2 x 400W and represents a lower total power solution for installations in retail, as well as bars and restaurants where a single two-channel amplifier is required — without the need for additional channels or power. The range, which is said to offer an unmatched power-to-size ratio, can drive low impedance loads (2/4/8 ohm) and 70V/100V distributed lines, selectable per channel. It also provides more than 16 different possible output configurations per channel.

Linea Research will show its range of four- and eight-channel networked DSP amplifiers, the installation-oriented C Series and the portable and touring-focused M Series. Each series offers models with power ratings from 400W to 5,000W per channel, all with 96kHz DSP and optional Dante networked audio.

Meyer Sound’s stand will feature ‘The Labs’, an interactive exploration of the company. Large touchscreen displays will show animations, videos and exploded diagrams to explore the company’s manufacturing processes, and reveal the advanced technology inside the company’s loudspeakers. Away from the stand, the Sonic Lounge networking facility will feature low-level music from overhead Ashby ceiling loudspeakers while Meyer Sound sales and technical personnel circulate to answer any questions.

Clear-Com will showcase the E-IPA card – a high-density audio-over-IP connection card for the Eclipse HX digital matrix intercom family. Natively AES67 compliant and SMPTE2110-30 ready, the E-IPA card provides 64 streams of low-latency and high audio bandwidth connections for linking existing and new IP-based Clear-Com products. With this card the Eclipse HX-Median and Omega systems can deliver up to 256 ports, making it the highest-density matrix intercom system available on the market. The E-IPA card comes in 16, 32, 48, and 64-port options.

Pliant Technologies will show the CrewCom professional wireless intercom system, which can be simultaneously used in both 2.4GHz and 900MHz frequency bands. CrewCom is based on a technology platform that is claimed to offer the industry’s highest wireless user counts, unparalleled range, and unprecedented scalability for a range of installation projects. CrewCom features excellent voice quality, the industry’s smallest fully featured professional full-duplex radio packs, and a host of user features.

Bogen Communications will show its first IP-based, software-centric communications system optimised for commercial paging and audio distribution applications. The C4000 solution – like the education-focused E7000 system that debuted at InfoComm 2017 – uses Bogen’s Nyquist software platform, which is said to offer unparalleled flexibility and scalability. The C4000 solution features a robust, state-of-the-art system controller with an easy to use web-based GUI that is accessible through any connected PC, tablet, or mobile device.

InfoComm 2018 takes place at the Las Vegas Convention Center from 6 to 8 June (professional development sessions begin 2 June).