Volume 6, Issue 4 — April 24, 2017
|What Is Your Brand Known For?|
By Anthony Coppedge
House of Worship Technology Consultant
Amazing new product? Check. Great fit for a church installation? Check. The dissonance between who you say you are and who your church prospects say you are? Ummmm. To complete this checklist, it begs the question: What is your brand known for?
Your brand is not what you say it is; it is what your prospects and clients say it is.
For all of the effort in positioning statements, taglines, clever branding techniques or the ubiquity of your logo, what others think of who you are as an organization is your truest brand representation.
Think of the brand name that has the most value to you in the audio, video and lighting (AVL) field. OK, now think about why that brand name carries such weight with you. Chances are, at least three of the key attributes listed below apply to why you hold that brand in such high regard:
When a Brand is Powerful
A powerful brand is an identity for the organization’s purpose, not their products. They focus their marketing on delivering their unique brand promise for the benefit of the client. Their products may be great, but their brand transcends the features and benefits of their products or services. To do this, they always — always — start with their ‘why’ not with their ‘what’ and are relentless in their resolve to be more than peddlers of products. They are masters of delivering on their vision and mission. Noted marketing consultant and TED talk speaker Simon Sinek has done a masterful job of describing this in the clip, “Start with Why.”
A powerful brand knows what they want to be known for. They have a value proposition grounded in the differentiation of who they are that is evident in what they deliver. You’ll notice that these powerful brands do not focus on price. Period. They focus on delivering their unique value so that the client resonates with the value that’s in it for them. Price is short-term; value is long-term. They start, and stay focus on, their ‘why’ day in and day out.
A powerful brand is known for something. Their ‘something’ causes them to stand apart from their competition and adds intrinsic value for their users. My friend Mark MacDonald deeply understands branding and churches. He has recently released a book called “Be Known for Something” that is aimed at helping churches go through this very process to reach their audience. If you’re serving churches, this book will help inform you about the church market in a unique way that will help you better identify with their felt needs.
A powerful brand delivers what they can best produce and delivers on their promises. Some of the largest powerful brands consistently deliver more of what they’re great at producing instead of spreading themselves thin across too many different categories. I don’t need to drop names for you to recognize how true this is when you’ve been to the million-dollar trade show booths (small villages, really) of some big brands. Sure, they have a big brand and a high diversity of products, but you’ve undoubtedly experienced the reality that while they have deep expertise in multiple technologies, they tend to be superlative at only a few of them. Greater focus beats a larger product offering more often than not.
Powerful brands are focused on their audience. These brands know exactly what they’re best at, who their most profitable clients are and what those clients value about what they do. For the house of worship market, there is massive potential for any number of manufacturers and systems integrators to gain serious ground in understanding this principle and effectively targeting, reaching, and engaging with an underserved market.
What You Are Known for by Churches
As a founding member of the largest church market technology expo, I can objectively tell you from experience that the vast majority of booth sponsors focus on either price or a feature to try and entice attendees. Having walked those, and other, trade show aisles with hundreds of church clients and prospects, it is unfortunate how often these vendors miss out on meaningful opportunities with decision-makers and influencers.
I’ve had scores of churches ask me what I think about a particular brand, and I always respond with the same answer: “What do you feel about [that brand]?” I do this because it requires the brand to stand on its own and for the church to consider what it means to them. No ‘expert’ can tell you what a brand will mean to you because what you value most may not be what another person values most. This is how the brands Puma and Adidas can co-exist with great success; each brand, though both are powerful, means something different to their loyal clients. (Interestingly, those two brands were started by two brothers from the same family.)
To be known for something by churches means you’ve understood and applied two things. First, it means you know yourself (your brand) well and that all that you deliver is based on that deep understanding and the value proposition that it stands for. Second, it also means that you know how exactly what that value means for the segments of churches that would be ideal clients. This is not all churches, but a subset (or a few segments) of the overall church market that values what you deliver even more than what your products and services can do for them (features/benefits).
Evaluating Your Brand Promise
What does your brand promise? Today, what does that mean to the house of worship market? What could it mean three, six, or 12 months from now? How can you better align your ‘why’ so that it oozes your value proposition? What would that value proposition mean to various segments of the church market?
To become a powerful brand, understand the statements above and do a SWOT (Strengths, Weakness, Opportunities, Threats) analysis to see how your brand measures up. From these candid moments of reflection, consider how you can add a unique differentiation to the churches that would believe what you believe. This may sound simple, but it will lead to some uncomfortable conversations that may require a significant shift in your business model.
I’d recommend surveying several hundred churches that you have in your prospect and client databases. Ask them about what your brand means to them and what they want from a technology company serving the church market. The answers, I believe, will honestly surprise you because they’re based on the viewpoint of churches and not businesses. There is likely a dissonance between who you say you are as a brand and who these surveyed churches will say you are as a brand. The truth is, they’re right. That’s your actual brand representation to this huge market. Now your job will be to learn from the axiom that perception is reality and actively change how you present your brand to the churches that can become loyal users and brand ambassadors.
Have you experienced the dissonance between what churches say your brand is compared to what you say your brand is? Share your views and opinions in the comments below.Leave a Comment
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|What Are You Giving Away to Churches?|
By Anthony Coppedge
House of Worship Technology Consultant
Mobile-first is a term used to describe the 2017 statistic where people begin their internet searches, browsing and application usage on their mobile device more than on a desktop or laptop computer. They’re searching for social proof (what others say about a brand, service or product), helpful knowledge-building and early research to educate their decision-making process. How are you informing church influencers and decision-makers about how your brand delivers the greatest value possible for their felt needs? What are you giving away to churches?
Content Is King
There are three kinds of content your brand can leverage: Owned, Paid and Earned.
Owned Content — Content you create, and that is in your control to leverage across any viable mediums and any useful channels. The best owned content starts and ends with what’s in it for the prospect. The worst owned content is self-promoting, but not self-aware.
Paid Content — This is content you or others create and is done so for remuneration. Google AdWords, trade publications and paid advertisement or sponsorship are prime examples of content that exists only because you’ve paid for it to be where it is.
Earned Content — The ultimate content is that which is earnestly created by others and paints your brand, products, and services in a positive light. This is also some of the most powerful content because, ostensibly, it is unbiased (or at least not paid) and carries the weight of being unsolicited and unsponsored. An entire micro-industry has emerged around earned content from prospect and client reviews and one need only look at Yelp, Trip Advisor or Amazon to witness the power of others talking about your brand and deliverables.
Creating content that has high intrinsic value is at the top of every marketer’s list of deliverables, but it is also more difficult to create because it’s not features or benefits focused (which is far easier, but less effective). Curating content is the science of creating and managing the workflow of delivering the right content to the right channel for the right audience at the right time. Your organization would do well to identify how to manage this content creation and curation process, as I’ve outlined in my previous article “Marketing Content to the House of Worship Market.”
Engagement Is Queen
If Content is King, then Engagement is Queen. It’s one thing to produce a new product marketing page on your website, complete with a downloadable PDF product sheet, but content alone isn’t the point: It’s a means to an end. And that end is engagement with the prospect or user!
Engagement is what happens when you get the prospect to do more than passively consume content. It’s an action which engages (hence the term) them with your organization. In marketing parlance, the Call-To-Action (CTA) is the point of most advertising and marketing efforts, because it moves the buyer along with the journey towards being an active, qualified lead.
Engagement most often happens when your marketing content and advertising efforts have successfully connected the dots for the prospect to identify the value of your products/services, resonate with a way in which you solve a problem or create a better outcome, and motive them to actively seek out additional, personalized content or activity (such as a webinar, product demo, or sales call). In the content marketing world, engagement happens several times in the buyer’s journey and each time there is a process and plan in place to further qualify the lead and reinforce your brand’s differentiation and value proposition.
And Social Proof Is the Prime Minister
So if Content is King and Engagement is Queen, then Social Proof is the Prime Minister. Hopefully, I’m not taking the monarchy/parliament metaphor too far, but it’s helpful to identify where the actual power lies in giving away valuable content and information to secure a sale. Much like the British monarchy, where the King and Queen are figure-heads with a valuable presence and notable amount of positive influence, content and engagement are powerful influences in a buyer’s journey. But the decision-making power is best supported by what others say about your brand, products, and services. See my Trends article “What Are You Known For?” to fully understand how your brand needs to reconcile the dissonance between who you say you are and who churches say you are.
Too many times to recall, I’ve had churches ask me for my opinion about a brand or product. This has happened as a consultant and also back when I was on staff at three different large churches. Churches talk to other churches. It’s a surprisingly small circle of influencers among the leaders in church technology, though many churches are asked by smaller churches what gear they are using, which manufacturers they recommend, and which systems integrators they’d use again (or not). The power of this social proof is immense and cannot be overstated. I’d go so far as to say that there is no better salesperson for your brand’s products and services to the house of worship market than highly satisfied users.
I’ve long promoted the idea of creating a ‘Client MDF fund’ to take full advantage of these loyal users and the unequaled power of their example and experience using your products and services. I recently wrote about it in my article “Vendors, Market Development Funds and the Faith Market.”
How is your pre-sales stack of content, engagement and social proof? Are you firing on all cylinders when it comes to reaching the house of worship market?
What say you about content, engagement, and social proof? Share your views and opinions in the comments below.Leave a Comment
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|Intelligibility and Acoustics Part 2: Speech Versus Music|
By Dr. Frederick Ampel
President & Principal, Technology Visions Analytics
A note from the author: Having been involved in several hundred HOW sound system projects, across many denominations, over the last three decades, I hope what I have learned as discussed below, will help you avoid the classic mistakes and poor choices I have seen far too often. Remember a worship space with bad acoustics is just a building, but a properly implemented HOW space with attention to acoustics, worship style, and most importantly the people, is a church!
It’s the Law
As a reminder, and as explained in the first article (rAVe HOW March 2017) the essential element within this topic is that no matter what you may read, be told, or have presented to you, there ARE immutable laws at work here, and no product can get around them. Keep that in mind as we proceed!
A Large Debris Field
Suffice it so say that the church sound world is littered with the debris and the wasted money created by poorly designed/executed systems or those installed into spaces that were acoustically compromised beyond any hope of intelligible reinforcement, either by their architectural design or by their interior look and feel or most often by a complex combination of both — “well… we must put the stained glass in that location…” despite the fact that they have been told, repeatedly that the chosen location will cause massive reflections from the proposed sound system.
Do not let well-meaning but acoustically-uninformed, planning make it impossible to deliver the core function of any worship space — the service.
Since architects are almost always involved (with or without liturgical design consultant services) and architectural designs/features and the needs on the acoustical side can clash it is extremely important that all parties reach a consensus very early on in the project on what compromises will be made and by whom, since most certainly some will be required. This applies regardless of whether the project is new construction, rehab or rebuild.
Therefore it is essential that all parties thoroughly understand the minimum demands required by intelligible reproduction of the spoken word or other program elements including praise music groups, organ or choir and similar worship service components.
Working With the Space
Despite the seemingly impossible-to-solve conflict between design of the building/worship space and desired functionality for the space from a sound system standpoint, it IS possible to have both. While the need for “space” or reverberation to enhance choir, organ and some musical elements cannot be ignored, it can and will happily co-exist with the spoken word, IF both elements are planned for and managed from the outset of any system development process.
For example take this church in the Toronto, Canada area.
This space allows both the spoken word and musical elements to work in harmony — because it was designed that way from the outset.
Pre-plan or Fail
For this blissful state of co-habitation to emerge, the initial analysis of the physical attributes of the chosen space or design for the space is an absolute prerequisite. Across the worship space designs I have been a part of, it is at this initial stage is where things usually go awry.
It’s All About the Reverberation Time
While there are many factors influencing a worship space’s performance, the most critical and most obvious to the congregants is reverberation time. Reverberation time is an essential and critical tool used to evaluate the acoustics of any space. At its simplest it is a measure of how long sound stays present within a space after it is made. More specifically, reverberation time (RT60) is defined as the time required for the level of sound in a room to drop 60 dB after the initial signal ends. Remember, the decibel scale is logarithmic so every change is actually much larger perceptually than the pure numbers would indicate — so a 60 dB change is huge.
Additionally, sound decay is governed by the inverse square law, which means that the perceived change varies by distance from the source as the inverse of the square of that distance. I know it sounds complicated (and it is) but there are numerous on-line reference tables to easily provide the needed data quickly — or better yet, consult with your acoustical professional who already knows this information and how to use it.
Preferred Reverberation Time
The actual, measureable, reverberation time for a space is dependent largely upon its physical volume (which is not changeable), the kind of surfaces it has and the materials used in its construction (which are changeable). For example, for speech, we normally want a relatively short reverb time. If the reverberation time is too long and/or if the speaker does not speak slowly, a listener will actually hear sound from more than one word simultaneously. The result is a muddled sound that is not easily understood.
On the other hand, if music is played within a space with a longer reverberation time, one that would be nominally less than ideal for speech, the musical notes tend to blend together, which is more pleasing than a dry dead sound. So the use of a space has a tremendous influence on what reverberation time is most desirable. It is also vital to remember that the defined usage is often not what ends up happening in the real world. The house of worship that was never going to have anything but speech all of a sudden wants to put in an organ, for example — so be careful to not only find out the current plan but also any future plans, even if vague and undefined at the outset. Knowing what might happen can help avoid disaster in the future — or at least a gigantic cost issue.
Take this space for another example — it’s a box with hard walls, glass, musicians up front and little visible treatment — do you think it will work for both the musical and spoken word portions of their service? Probably not without some remedial acoustical work to achieve a balance between the hard surfaces and the needs of the spoken word for starters. It’s a nice look and feel but perhaps not as functional acoustically.
On the other hand, look at this classic Baptist church. Judicious, and well integrated acoustical materials (front of choir loft for example) angled walls and minimum parallel reflective surface make for a space that will nicely accommodate both the spoken word and the choir and its musical support.
Music and Speech
By now it should be clear that there can and usually are two desired reverberation values for any worship space if both speech and musical sources are involved.
If the worship style does not include musical sources, and the space will NEVER (remember never does not always mean never) be used for that purpose it can be optimized for a short, speech-friendly reverberation time, say 1.3 to 1.8 seconds.
However, in most cases the aforementioned compromises must be negotiated.
Thus, achieving an agreeable balance for all stakeholders between speech intelligibility and musical quality is desired. As a general rule-of-thumb for most worship styles, and spaces which incorporate some kind of sanctuary type space, a reasonable reverberation time design goal should be between 2.0 and 2.5 second for mid-frequency sound (500 to 1,000 Hz) to provide both reasonable speech intelligibility and musical quality, assuming there are no obvious hard echos or other distracting noise such as HVAC rumble.
There are relatively simple guidelines available from numerous sources on-line or from professional acousticians that show how the reverberation time within a space can be controlled by the ratio of sound-absorptive surface area to sound-reflective surface area. Here’s one example.
In general, to maximize speech clarity, you want to reduce the reverberation time. There are many types of acoustical treatments including: wall panels, stretch fabrics, baffles, wood and perforated metal styles, as well as many varieties of cellulose type spray-on compounds to choose from. And again the manufacturers of these materials all have online resources and often design help available. You simply have to ask.
Worship Style and Acoustical Needs
To help understand the various needs, based on worship style, let’s look at three main categories of service style and their requirements — in general. Each specific facility, denomination and culture will superimpose their own needs and preferences on these general guidelines. It is therefore important to understand exactly how the particular facility will conduct their services and what makes up that service.
The traditional or liturgical styles of worship (in both Christian and Jewish faiths), wherein the spoken word predominates, are usually the easiest to manage acoustically; reinforcement-wise since they can tolerate reasonable reverberation time windows from approximately 1.5 to 2.5 seconds without much difficulty. However if a pipe organ is part of the facility and is used in the service, aiming towards the longer end of the scale will help blend and diffuse the organ and present a smoother sonic picture, while still allowing for clear speech — IF there are no discrete echos or bad reflections present. If such conditions exist, judicious and careful placement of absorptive materials or treatments can go a long way to mitigating the problem. But sometimes the building is just problematic and other solutions may be needed. This is when bringing in an acoustical consultant would be strongly recommended, before committing to any sound system design or install. You have to have a ‘clean acoustical slate’ to work from or the system will NEVER function acceptably.
The contemporary church has a service style that generally includes a praise band or other musical elements, and is often ‘theatrical’ in style. The kind of spaces these HOWs tend to gravitate towards are more performance-theater in style and shape, and more friendly to sound reinforcement since it is nominally a part of the design and readily integrated (almost expected in many cases) by the worship style and service elements.
Generally, they put a higher emphasis on speech and amplified music while, at the same time, they want their churches to have a traditional sound for choral and congregational singing. As a result, such churches require a longer reverb time that does not interfere too much with speech or amplified music — almost a neutral space (if such a space can be built or exist). Generally, a reverb time of 1.5 seconds is desired. A large (number of congregants and spatial volume) church can function well at as high as 1.7 seconds while smaller churches should be around 1.4 seconds. In many cases, this is an electronic church because of the use of instruments and sound reinforcement as an integral element of the service.
The Blended Style
The blended church is often both an electronic church and a traditional church combined together. It has elements of both styles, which creates a complex mix of demands both functionally and sound reinforcement wise.
Their service style often includes elements of drama, theater, conventional liturgy and high energy musical performance. With such an extensive list of requirements, a reverb time of less than 1.35 seconds is a useful starting point.
A good example can be seen in this photo of the New Beginning Worship Center, Northport, Ala., wherein the musical element is front and center.
Key Points to Plan and Consider
Fixing the acoustics after the building is built is ALWAYS expensive; getting it right before construction starts is not.
Money spent on hiring the right sound system consultant is money that will be saved when purchasing and using the sound system.
It is always cheaper and better to do it right the first time. Multiple system installs, DIY/trial and error approaches and similar methods will always be budget busters and rarely produce a viable solution. Acoustics and sound system design are applied physics, not magic. Poor acoustics and sound system performance means either that the design team made mistakes or their recommendations were not properly implemented. Good acoustics seldom happen by accident.
No sound system can remove reverberation from a space. If contemporary music will be part of the worship, reverberation must be carefully controlled. Contemporary music and traditional European music make very different and conflicting demands on room acoustics. It is quite costly (and often impractical) to provide a workable acoustic environment for both forms in the same space. Any architect who knows anything about acoustics will hire a good acoustical consultant for any significantly sized church space.
And finally, the old adage that Proper Planning Prevents Poor Performance is not just a cute phrase — it’s the truth.
Technical questions? Thoughts or comments? Email me directly — I’d be happy to chat with you. Or leave a comment below!Leave a Comment
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|BenQ’s New G-Series Monitors Debut|
BenQ America today announced two new additions to its mainstream monitor lineup: the GL2706PQ and GC2870H. The new 27″ VA GL2706PQ display is designed for the office that is native QHD 2560×1440 resolution using an LED backlight panel. Packed with BenQ’s Eye-Care technology, including ZeroFlicker and Low Blue Light and has an ergonomic height-adjustable stand that allows users to set up their most comfortable viewing angles.
The 28″ LED FHD 1920×1080 resolution GC2870H is 85 percent NTSC color gamut coverage using 8-bit color at a 3,000:1 native contrast ratio. With 178°/178° wide-viewing angles, users can experience authentic colors and ultra-sharp details from any direction. Also, featuring Eye-Care technology, the GC2870H is designed to filter out harmful blue light, effectively decreasing eye fatigue and irritation. It also has an HDMI interface.
Both models are available now and list at $189 for the GC2870H and $299 for the GL2706PQ. Here are the details.Leave a Comment
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|Dante Compatibility Added to Amate Audio’s DSP608A new version of Amate Audio’s DSP608 digital loudspeaker management system has debuted — and it now features on-board support for Dante AoIP (audio over IP) multi-channel streaming signals. The six-in / eight-out, 1U 19” rackmount unit now additionally features a two-channel Dante input, via its RJ45 Ethernet port.
Dante enables streaming of multiple channels (over a thousand per link) of high-resolution digital audio (up to 32 bit / 192 kHz), with near-zero latency and synchronization, with a single low cost commodity CAT5e, CAT6 or fibre optic cable. Dante integrates digital audio transport and control data transmission for an entire sound installation system over a standard Ethernet based IP network. Dante based systems can readily scale from a simple pairing of a console to a computer, to large capacity networks running thousands of audio channels. Because Dante uses logical routes instead of physical point-to-point connections, networks can be expanded and reconfigured at any time with just a few mouse clicks. The DSP608Dis an ideal tool for upgrading and protecting any sound reinforcement system.
Specs include a 64-bit DSP architecture, 24 bit AD/DA convertors and 118 dB input dynamic range. With four balanced XLR analogue inputs, two channels of AES/EBU and dual Dante input channels. Four inputs (two fixed analogue, two selectable between analogue, AES/EBU or Dante) can be routed to the unit’s eight balanced XLR outputs. Features include 1 Hz frequency resolution, 10 parametric EQs for each I/O, two crossovers (multiple types) per output, an independent limiter for each output and delay line up to 2 seconds (680 m) per I/O. Four LED per I/O provide for signal monitoring (level, clip and limiter), while a two 16 EBTN black backlit LCD and keypad enable comprehensive operation of the unit. Additionally, the unit can be connected via USB (front panel input) or Ethernet to a PC (Windows and Mac OS) for remote operation via the DSPLink control software, which provides a logical Graphical User Interface and the ability to simultaneously control multiple units.
There is on-board Memory storage for 80 pre-sets and password protected security lock.The universal switch mode power supply enables operation with any mains condition between 90 and 264 V AC. Here are all the specs.Leave a Comment
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|Adamson Expands S-SERIES and Introduces New IS-SERIES Line Arrays|
Adamson Systems Engineering added the S10n line array cabinet to its S-SERIES and has introduced the integration-focused IS-SERIES family of loudspeakers this week. The S10n is a narrow-dispersion version of the S10 two-way, full-range line array cabinet. Having identical specs to the S10, the S10n has an 80° x 10° (H x V) dispersion pattern for applications with tighter horizontal coverage requirements.
The IS-SERIES made its debut with the IS7 and complementing IS118 subwoofer. The IS-SERIES uses Adamson’s tour-level technology into sleek, architecturally-friendly boxes with rugged but unobtrusive rigging solutions.
The IS7 is a two-way, full-range line array cabinet containing two ND7-X5, 7” Neodymium drivers and an NH3, 1.4” exit compression driver. It produces a slightly curved wavefront with a nominal dispersion pattern of 100° x 12.5° (H x V). According to Adamson, the waveguide’s efficiency allows for increased vertical dispersion without sacrificing high frequency presence in the far field while the patent-pending Controlled Summation Technology further eliminates the low-mid lobing normally associated with two-way line source systems.
The companion IS118 subwoofer is a lightweight, long excursion 18” ND18-S Kevlar Neodymium driver utilizing Adamson’s Advanced Cone Architecture and a 4” voice coil for power handling. It is mounted in a front-loaded enclosure.
The IS-SERIES cabinet construction uses marine-grade birch plywood and aircraft-grade steel. The IS7 is equipped with NL4 Connectors and screw terminals while the IS118 has screw terminals available on demand. A plate-and-screw rigging solution is recessed in the interior of the rear rigging fins for easy installation. The series is available in a standard black and white, with RAL colours available on demand.
The IS-SERIES is designed for a wide range of applications, including performing arts centers, live performance venues, sports venues, conference centers and houses of worship.
The IS7 and IS118 will begin shipping in late May 2017. The S10n will begin shipping in the summer of 2017. Here are all the specs.Leave a Comment
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|LG Officially Adds Wallpaper Displays to Digital Signage Lineup — Stuns Everyone Looking At It|
LG Electronics USA Business Solutions has finally debuted the new lightweight LG OLED “Wallpaper” commercial display as well as new customizable open-frame LG OLED displays at the 2017 Digital Signage Expo (DSE). The Wallpaper isn’t totally new. In fact, we were the first publication to see the commercial version of it when it debuted in Australia last summer — here’s the video we shot there.
The LG OLED Wallpaper technology has literally created a new category of displays as it’s so thin. And, as you no doubt know, OLED technology has a unique ability to turn each pixel on or completely off, thus, black is black — and since white is the opposite of black in displays (and all color is made from everything between black and white), colorimetry is incredible.
So far, it’s the talk of the DSE — nearly everyone is talking about it.
This version of the LG OLED Wallpaper is specifically for commercial display applications and it’s in a 55-inch form-factor that weighs less than 13 pounds and has depth that is just 3.65 millimeters (0.14 inches). Yes, you read that right — barely more than 1/10th of an inch.
The Wallpaper display can be mounted either vertically or horizontally for a customizable display design. Ultra-slim mounting brackets with a magnetic mat create a truly seamless design that becomes one with the wall. Electronic components are housed in a separate control box connected to the display with a 2-meter (6-1/2-foot) cable.
The LG OLED Wallpaper commercial display is native HD (1920×1080) has 64 GB of internal memory, content mirroring capabilities, content scheduling and Wi-Fi connectivity. Future versions will include larger sizes (likely up to 80″) as well as 4K (3840×2160) resolution displays.
Also on display in the United States for the first time at DSE 2017 is the “In-Glass Wallpaper” LG OLED digital signage display. Designed with dual-sided ultra-slim OLED panels in a glass pane, the In-Glass Wallpaper LG OLED display is perfect for boutiques, art galleries and other businesses that want to add a sophisticated touch to their interior décor. The In-Glass Wallpaper LG OLED solution will be available in standing and hanging versions to provide businesses flexible options.
Here are the technical details.Leave a Comment
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|Barco Intros UDX Platform Projectors Aimed at Install and Rental Market, All Specified at Minimum 20K LumensBarco is launching a new projector range that they literally claimed “will change the game for rental companies and AV integrators.” Hmmm, that’s s a lot of hype to live up to.
The UDX series consists of five 3-chip DLP models — all laser-phosphor based projectors — that all are identically spec’d at a 2000:1 contrast ratio but having various aspect ratios and brightness specs — but the minimum brightness is 21,000 lumens:
- UDX-W22: 1920×1200 resolution and spec’d at 22,000 lumens,
- UDX-4K22: 3840×2400 resolution and spec’s at 21,000 lumens.
- UDX-U32: 1600×1200 resolution spec’d at 30,000 lumens.
- UDX-W32: 1920×1200 resolution spec’d at 32,000 lumens.
- UDX-4K32: 3840×2400 resolution spec’d at 31,000 lumens.
All five models also share Barco’s Constant Light Output (CLO) functionality, which they say provides constant brightness and color over time and they are all spec’d to outperform the Rec. 709 color space. In addition, all of them have warping, blending and image mapping built-in and even though they aren’t all native 4K resolution, all of them can handle inputs up to 4K DCI signals (4,096×2,560). In addition all of them can use Barco’s TLD+ series of lenses with throws from 1.2:1 to 11.5:1. And like all laser-based projectors, all of them can be mounted in table, ceiling, side (portrait) and vertical (landscape) orientations while spec’d at a 20,000 hour lifetime. Inputs include HDMI 2.0 (HDCP 2.2); DP 1.2 (HDCP 1.3) and Quad SDI/HDSDI/dual HDSDI/6G/BarcoLink.
Here are all the detailed specs.Leave a Comment
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|Barco Sells High End Systems Lighting to US-based ETC|
Barco announced today that it has finalized an agreement with U.S.-based lighting company ETC to sell its lighting company, High End Systems, based in Austin, Tex. Barco says the transaction is part of Barco’s drive to step up focus on performance and streamline its business portfolio.
High End Systems has offices in the United States and employs 60 employees, primarily in Austin, Tex. In 2016, the lighting activity booked $20 million US dollar in sales with EBITDA close to break-even.
ETC, based in Madison, Wis., is a creator of lighting and rigging products and its offering is fully complementary with High End Systems’ product line. ETC will operate High End Systems as a separate company located in its current Austin, Tex. facility. The transaction with ETC will be effective as of April 2017 and ensures continuation of the product portfolio and future development for the current High End Systems customer base.
Barco is here and ETC is here. High End Systems is here.Leave a Comment
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|Magewell to Launch 4K USB Video Capture Devices This WeekMagewell will unveil new 4K models in its USB Capture Plus series of external video capture devices this week.
Like existing Magewell USB video “ingest” solutions, the newest USB Capture Plus models enable all types of computers including laptops to capture professional video and audio signals through a standard USB 3.0 interface, with no additional power source required. Available with SDI or HDMI inputs, the 4K USB Capture Plus devices capture resolutions up to 4096×2160.
The new USB Capture SDI 4K Plus captures 4K video at 30 frames (@30Hz) per second over its 6Gbps SDI interface, while the USB Capture HDMI 4K Plus supports 4K inputs up to 60fps (@60Hz) via HDMI 2.0 connectivity, but scales them at 30fps. 4K inputs with 4:4:4 or 4:2:2 color sampling are automatically converted to 4:2:0 for capture in the NV12 or I420 color space formats, to fit within the bandwidth available in the USB 3.0 standard. Both models offer loop-through connections.
Both new 4K USB Capture Plus devices support embedded audio in the SDI or HDMI input signal, as well as separate audio inputs and outputs for capture and monitoring: line-level analog input and output connections on the USB Capture SDI 4K Plus, and an analog microphone input and stereo headphone output on the HDMI model.
Like Magewell’s HD models, the new 4K USB Capture Plus devices feature FPGA-based video processing, for deinterlacing, up/down conversion and image controls while not affecting CPU availability for third-party software. FPGA-based audio processing featuring ASRC technology delivers superior USB audio handling, while the included USB Capture Utility software gives users advanced control of processing settings and access to detailed status information.
The USB Capture SDI 4K Plus and USB Capture HDMI 4K Plus support Windows, Mac and Linux operating systems. Here are the details.Leave a Comment
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|K-array Launches Mastif Line of Speakers for Live EventsK-array just launched new speaker/monitors in a line called Mastif, the KM312, KM312P, KM112 and KM11P. The monitors feature an asymmetrical 100° by 30° horn granting performers the possibility to select a wide or narrow sound emission. And with a strong stainless steel grill and sturdy birch wood chassis, these monitors are built to withstand any onstage abuse that may incur from the musical acts.
The larger models of the Mastiff line, the KM312 and the KM312P, feature three 12” woofers and produce a maximum SPL output at 136 dB (peak). K-arrays says these hard-hitting speakers are ideal for touring, concerts, music festivals and live events in large venues and are prefect for drum monitoring. The Mastiff KM312 is the active model while the Mastiff KM312P is passive.
The Mastiff-KM112 and Mastiff-KM112P are also potent yet in a smaller, compact form factor. Both models feature a coaxial 12” woofer and reach a maximum SPL of 133 dB (peak). The self-powered KM112 has a power output to drive the KM112P passive version, which in turn can drive a stereo mix, as well as a Thunder KMT18P for a drum fill.
To learn more about the line here:
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|PreSonus Introduces StudioLive 24 Digital Console/RecorderPreSonus’ new 24-channel StudioLive 24 digital console/recorders further extends the company’s third-generation StudioLive Series III line, which launched earlier this year with the 16-channel StudioLive 16 and 32-channel StudioLive 32. Like all Series III consoles, StudioLive 24 further improves on the StudioLive’s legendary ease of use while letting you customize workflow and operations to fit the way you work.
The new console features 24 physical input channels with touch-sensitive, motorized faders and recallable XMAX Class A preamps. The main L/R bus also has a touch-sensitive, motorized fader. Internally, the StudioLive 24 is identical to the larger-framed StudioLive 32; all 32 internal channels can be addressed digitally via USB and AVB.
PreSonus Capture multitrack recording software with virtual soundcheck is installed directly into the StudioLive 24 console so you can leave your laptop at home. Record up to 34 tracks to the console’s onboard SD recorder. When finished recording, open your Capture session in Studio One Artist for Mac and Windows (included), and the entire mix scene will transfer to your Studio One session, including fader levels and Fat Channel settings.
As with other StudioLive Series III consoles, the StudioLive 24’s distinctive Fat Channel processing section presents a plug-in-style workflow that features vintage-style EQ and compression options on every channel, from classic tube limiters to passive EQs. In addition to channel processing, you get six-band, fully parametric EQ on all mix outputs.
StudioLive Series III provides ways to customize things to best fit the way users work. User layers for the channel faders let you place any channel, DCA master, or bus fader anywhere you want — and they’re easy to set up. You can customize your Fat Channel layout, putting the parameters you care about most right at your fingertips and there are several workflow options to personalize your mixing experience.
Scenes can also be extensively customized, including a Scene Safe feature that prevents a scene change from altering the settings on designated “safe” channels. Similarly, Fat Channel presets have, for practical purposes, become like scenes for individual channels, not only saving input and Fat Channel settings but also aux send and bus assignments. Of course you can also use preset filters to choose what you want to recall.
In addition to four fixed subgroups, the StudioLive 24 offers 16 FlexMixes that can be individually designated as aux, subgroup, or matrix mixes, for a total of 20 mix buses, not counting the main mix, effects mixes and solo buses. Twenty-four DCAs enable easy, flexible control of groups of channels. Choose between one-to-one or split-layer workflows: Assign all channels to the top layer, with one fader per input channel or split the faders between inputs and outputs, including DCAs and aux outputs.
An AVB Ethernet connection enables you to network compatible computers and stream up to 55 channels of audio to and from a Mac or Windows PC. (AVB networked solutions, including stage boxes, personal monitor mixers, and increased third-party AVB interoperability, are coming later in 2017.) You also get 40×40 recording via USB 2.0, giving you a choice of computer recording methods. A separate 1 Gb Ethernet port can connect to a wireless router or directly to a computer for remote control of virtually all features via a wired or wireless connection.
PreSonus StudioLive Series III mixers are tightly integrated with an entire suite of state-of-the-art software. Mix wirelessly or over a wired network from anywhere using free UC Surface touch-control software for Mac, Windows and iPad. Even add a second — or third, or even fourth! — screen for fast workflow. Remote control the mixer’s recallable XMAX preamps and Fat Channel processing with Studio One Artist (included) for low-latency recording with effects. Completely automate virtual soundchecks and record shows with Capture for Mac and Windows (included)—or record with Studio One or with any software that supports ASIO or Core Audio. Musicians can control their monitor mixes onstage with free QMix-UC for iPhone, iPod touch, and Android devices. You also get the Studio Magic Plug-in Suite for Mac and Windows, which includes seven popular plug-ins in VST, AU and AAX formats.
The StudioLive 24 is expected to be available in the second quarter of 2017, with a U.S. MAP price of $2,499.95. For more information, go here.Leave a Comment
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|Datapath Fx4-SDI Display Wall Controller Removes Need for External Conversion|
Datapath has launched a Fx4-SDI display wall controller that is fully SDI compatible, removing need for external conversion and reducing the margin for errors or faults when long cabling systems are deployed. The unit offers a choice of SDI/DP/HDMI inputs and is spec’d to deliver 4K @60 fps (4:4:4) through the DisplayPort input. But, DisplayPort cables are often too short for Live Events or Broadcast applications and are not compatible with existing equipment. For this reason, the Fx4-SDI has been designed to ingest a 4K 60 fps DisplayPort 1.2 signal from a media server and output that signal as four 3G-SDI HD signals.
All of the required cropping, scaling, rotation and frame-rate conversion is handled by the Fx4-SDI hardware. Regions can be overlapped to allow any output to replicate another, or be configured to support any creative splice of the source material. Many non-rectangular screen arrangements, as well as any mix of monitor orientations can be supported, allowing users to create an almost unlimited multi-monitor canvas.
Datapath’s Wall Designer software has been specifically updated to incorporate the Datapath Fx4-SDI for functions that include overlapping, mirroring and bezel-correction requirements. Supplied free-of-charge, Wall Designer allows users to add displays from the ever-expanding database of monitors. Users can visualise their content by adding inputs, adjust display regions, and finally instantly program all Datapath Fx4-SDI controllers either via USB or the network ports.
Fast transmission speeds are required in live events and broadcast projects, where vast networks of SDI cables often need to cover large distances. The Datapath Fx4-SDI offers four SDI outputs and the ability to loop multiple units together, making it suitable for large and/or complex video wall installations. The Fx4-SDI has dual Ethernet ports so that users can easily add the device to their networks. Only one Datapath Fx4-SDI in the chain requires connection to the physical LAN as Ethernet loop-through is supported on the second port.
Here are all the specs.Leave a Comment
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|Harman JBL Intros EON ONE PRO Rechargeable Portable PA|
HARMAN Professional Solutions today unveiled the JBL EON ONE PRO rechargeable portable personal linear-array PA. The EON ONE Pro combines the sound quality of a professional system with the convenience and portability of a self-contained, battery-powered solution. Featuring Bluetooth audio, a seven-channel mixer and a rechargeable lithium battery that lasts six hours, EON ONE Pro is designed for portable and rental applications for pop-up musicians, educators, fitness studios, corporate environments and more.
Claiming it as the first all-in-one battery-powered linear-array PA system, the EON ONE PRO has a high-frequency section and two spacers fit conveniently into the base unit. Two spacers provide a long throw for live performances and large crowds, while a single spacer is ideal for conferences, gyms and medium-sized groups. For small meetings and intimate events, users can place the high-frequency section directly atop the base unit.
With a maximum SPL of 118 dB (peak), the EON ONE PRO provides distortion-free audio. An 8” bass-reflex subwoofer delivers a low-frequency response that’s designed for recorded music. The high-frequency section features JBL’s patent-pending Directivity Control Geometry, which optimizes the spacing and angles of the six two-inch high-frequency drivers to deliver full and clear sound over a wide coverage area, ensuring that the entire audience hears the sound accurately and consistently.
The built-in seven-channel mixer with Hi-Z inputs and phantom power enables users to connect microphones, instruments such as acoustic guitars, electric guitars and keyboards, and other sources. The mixer features bass, treble and reverb controls to optimize the sound. The unit also includes a pass-thru XLR connector for integrating additional units for more robust sound reinforcement. Bluetooth audio streaming makes it easy to play back recorded music from smartphones or tablets. A USB charger connection provides power for phones and tablets when needed and the unit features an integrated tablet stand for convenience.
Here are the tech specs.Leave a Comment
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|HARMAN Professional Solutions Debuts JBL VTX A12 Line Array LoudspeakerHARMAN Professional Solutions today introduced JBL by HARMAN VTX A12 line array loudspeakers, a completely redesigned solution for mid- to large-size touring productions and high-end fixed installations. Featuring entirely new and proprietary transducer and high-frequency waveguide designs, innovations in the rigging and suspension hardware, and refinements to the physical aspects of the cabinet, JBL VTX A12 addresses the most important needs of tour sound professionals and represents a renewed commitment by JBL to the tour sound community.
The VTX A12 loudspeaker was designed from scratch to address the unique challenges of rental companies, front-of-house engineers and tour sound production crews. All VTX A12 accessories are designed to be lightweight, durable and sized to fit both USA and International truck dimensions simplifying transport and logistics.
VTX A12 features a new high-frequency (HF) section with three uniquely designed drivers that combine the HF phasing-plug and waveguide into one part, yielding better tolerances and increased sensitivity above 6 kHz, while reducing distortion and overall weight. A newly designed Radiation Boundary Integrator (RBI) combines four 5” mid-frequency drivers into the high-frequency waveguide and provides a smooth horn surface for the high frequency section. A lightweight 12” low frequency woofer (LF) features a fourth-generation Differential Drive design, new dual NEO dual-coil magnet arrangement and a host of proprietary JBL technologies for increased excursion, power handling and sensitivity. These elements combine to deliver a system with the highest output per weight, great low-frequency extension, and 90 degree directivity down to 300 Hz.
VTX A12 also features an updated exterior. The full-face grill design protects the loudspeaker components and helps the system achieve a higher Ingress Protection rating (IP55). Even more extensive weatherization is available if desired. The full-face grill also reduces the number of exposed components, allowing the loudspeaker to be finished in a variety of color options to better suit fixed install applications.
JBL VTX A12 will be available in April 2017. Here are all the specs.Leave a Comment
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|VocoPro Launches Battery-Powered PA System with Integrated LED Projector|
VocoPro today announced its new K-CAST product, what they are claiming as the world’s first battery-powered PA system with an on-board LED projector. The K-Cast’s portable PA system has a 12-inch woofer and horn tweeter pumping out 120 watts of power. The back panel includes an integrated LED projector and a guitar input jack, as well as controls for the two included wireless microphones. The 1080p LED projector can includes content deliver from either an HDMI source or via a USB thumb drive. The K-Cast USB drive has a built-in video decoder that will accept the most popular video files such as .mp4, .avi, .mov and .mkv.
The K-Cast also includes two UHF wireless microphones for duet performances and a 70-inch portable screen for outdoor events.
- Four to six hours of performance time on a full charge
- 12-inch woofer with compression tweeter
- Remote control uses 2.4G RF for distance and 360 degree reception
- Speaker stand ready
- Includes: rolling PA system unit, two UHF wireless microphones, 70-inch portable outdoor screen
It retails for $699.00. Here are all the specs.Leave a Comment
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|Audio-Technica’s Alteros Debuts GTX Series Ultra-Wideband (UWB) Wireless Microphone System|
Alteros, an Audio-Technica company, just introduced the GTX Series Ultra-Wideband (UWB) Wireless Microphone System. The Alteros GTX Series is a fully digital 6.5 GHz system that provides reliable, interference-free performance and license-free operation, supporting up to 24 simultaneous, high-quality, low-latency (< 3ms), uncompanded 48 kHz/24-bit audio channels in any indoor or outdoor broadcast environment.
The GTX Series operates beyond the UHF and VHF television bands, requires no frequency coordination, license, database registration or STA, and does not cause interference or create intermodulation products.
The GTX Series system launches with three components: the GTX3224 control unit, GTX24 body-pack transmitter and
transceiver. No additional filters, combiners or distribution amplifiers are required. The GTX3224 simultaneously supports up to 24 channels, an additional 24 channels of talkback audio, and eight group assignment channels in just 3U of rack space. The unit features MADI, Dante and AES67 digital outputs that are all available simultaneously and allow for seamless integration with IP-based infrastructures. A single-mode fiber output supports long-distance runs. The 7-inch front-panel touch screen provides access to system settings, monitoring tools, performance reports and other controls.
Up to 32 GTX32 transceivers may be deployed, connecting to the GTX3224 over standard shielded Cat 5 cable, which is operational to 1,000 feet. The GTX Series system’s powerful management software maximizes operational efficiency, enabling users to set up and confirm operation of 32 transceivers and 24 transmitters in only a few hours.
The GTX24 body-pack transmitter may be purchased on its own, without a microphone or configured with one of two Audio-Technica Subminiature Omnidirectional Condenser Lavalier Microphones, the AT899cL4 or AT899cL4SW, the latter equipped with an in-line talkback switch.
Here are all the specs.Leave a Comment
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|Emotiva Audio Ships New BasX CD-100|
Emotiva Audio is shipping its new BasX CD-100 high-performance CD player. Featuring analog outputs that claim a frequency response that is flat from 20 Hz – 20 kHz, +/-0.35 dB as well as digital outputs via coax and optical S/PDIF connectors, the $299 CD-100 plays commercial CDs, CD-R discs, CDs with HDCD encoding and discs containing MP3 files.
The BasX CD-100 is built to be a rugged, heavy duty CD player with an all-steel chassis, solid milled aluminum faceplate and what Emotive say is a extra shielding to protect interference, vibration and jitter. The DAC (digital-to-analog converter) is powered by a multi-stage power supply for noise-free output.
Here are all the tech specs.Leave a Comment
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|DPA Microphones Introduces Four-Way d:screet Microphone Clip|
DPA Microphones’ d:screet microphone series has a new four-way clip that DPA says is designed for fast and secure mounting-upwards, downwards, left and right-and has multiple cable management mounting options. The clip offers three points for cable attachment, providing the user with the flexibility they need to move around. The clip is available in black and retails for €17 ($18). The four-way clip is compatible with the d:screet 4060 series, Slim series as well as 4071 omnidirectional microphones.
Here are the specs.Leave a Comment
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