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PLASA Show 2018 preview

Big brands, debuts and the latest tech are heading to London for PLASA Show 2018
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PLASA Show, now in its 41st year, returns to London Olympia on 16-18 September, providing a stage for the world of events and entertainment technology. Last year marked a return to form for the show with a 23% increase in the number of audio exhibitors and this year that number is set to go up another 18%, showing faith from the industry has been duly restored.

Bose, Yamaha, Epson and ArKaos are among the 200 brands exhibiting at the show, along with 48 seminars with 58 expert speakers. And, with last year’s show floor selling out, extra stands have been released for smaller companies representing all sectors of the industry, from DJ and installation, to worship and education. Many brands will be launching and debuting products in the UK for the first time, including: Allen & Heath, Bose, DiGiCo and Avolites.

On what to expect at this year’s show, managing director Peter Heath comments: “It will be the most balanced programme with more audio exhibitors, including the likes of L-Acoustics, joining the already strong lighting and video businesses. We will even have audio demos running throughout the show from a number of loudspeaker manufacturers.”

Running parallel to the show floor, a number of industry-leaders and seasoned experts will deliver talks, panels and hands-on training sessions. “Immersive audio is a big topic as are rigging topics including aerial events, lighting and audio modelling and analysis and audio mixing techniques,” adds Heath.

Avnu Alliance representatives Genio Kronauer of L-Acoustics, and Henning Kaltheuler of d&b audiotechnik will present ‘The new application layer protocol for guaranteed future-proof AV networks’, discussing how the Avnu pro AV specifications and certification programme promises deterministic, reliable, and futureproof delivery of networked media.

Audio experts Britannia Row Productions are hosting a series of seminars to help both the younger generation and seasoned professionals. They will discuss the future of immersive audio, outline their training courses, run a demonstration of speaker system prediction software, and assist sound engineer Simon Hodge to build a mix from scratch using a multitrack recording.

The SoundGirls make their debut at PLASA Show with a future-focused panel looking to bring the audience closer with live mixing apps, immersive sound systems and a new generation of technology.

Elsewhere on the programme, Brandon Eckstorm will showcase Vectorworks Spotlight, the ABTT return with updates on Technical Standards for Places of Entertainment, and a panel with the Association of Lighting Designers and the Association of Sound Designers will brainstorm on collaboration.

New for this year is a dedicated Rigging, Production and Structures Theatre, which will offer free-to-attend content throughout the show. The sessions will address topics such as load monitoring, aerial rigging kinematics, automation, simple calculations and working from trusses.

For audio professionals, Sennheiser will offer sessions focussing on their Speechline Digital Wireless System, and the Audio Demo Room will be presenting the latest loudspeakers from leading brands including OHM, Shermann, KV2 Audio, Aura Audio and RCF.

“Last year’s sold out 40th anniversary is a hard act to follow, but we have strived to remain on the cutting edge of the entertainment industry and are excited to present the very latest technologies and projects of the biggest brands and most influential thinkers,” explains Heath.

“We are confident that every visitor will leave with a mind full of inspiration, a book full of contacts and a renewed passion for this exciting industry.”