AV News to Know Nov. 7, 2020: New Products, Cool Projects and People in New Places

Published: 2020-11-06

Here’s a closer look at some of the AV news, products and projects you might have missed this week. We call it AV News to Know:

New AV Products

Extron Introduces AV Over IP Wallplate Encoders

Extron this week introduced two new NAV encoders, which feature a decorator-style wallplate design.

These models support streaming visually lossless 4K video with ultra-low latency. With support for 1 Gbps Ethernet networks and optional Ethernet expansion ports, the NAV wallplate encoder series uses the Extron-patented PURE3 codec to deliver real-time, visually lossless video at resolutions up to 4K@60 Hz with 4:4:4 chroma sampling.


ZeeVee’s Enhanced SIGNAL Partner Program to Provide More Support and Value

ZeeVee, Inc. has enhanced its SIGNAL Partner program to provide a richer package of services and support for its growing network of VIP AV integrators, distributors and consultants.

Registered partners gain access to an improved portal interface that provides real-time notifications and communications on products and company news. Among the highlights of the program’s enhancements, partners now gain faster access to resources such as:

  • A streamlined deal registration process and associated benefit
  • More in-depth tech primers, white papers and training videos in “Art’s Corner,” created by Director of Product Management Art Weeks
  • A formal minimum advertised pricing (MAP) policy to protect partners in the marketplace
  • Exclusive on-demand access to all previous ZeeVee SIGNAL Sessions and
  • The complete archive of all ZeeVee SIGNAL Boost newsletters

Jabra Integrates with Barco ClickShare Conference

Jabra PanaCast and Jabra Speak are now integrated with Barco ClickShare Conference – allowing remote and local participants to see the full picture, hear the full story and be engaged like in a faceto-face meeting.

Jabra PanaCast offers a full 180-degree view and its Intelligent Zoom function automatically includes everyone in the conversation – even if more spread out in the room to maintain social distancing.

Jabra Speak series speakerphones connect wirelessly via Bluetooth technology to the ClickShare Base unit while uncluttering the meeting room table.

AVer Information Inc. USA Releases Latest AI Auto Tracking Cameras

AVer Information Inc. USA this week announced the company has released the TR311 and TR313 AI Auto Tracking PTZ streaming cameras, the latest in its lineup of artificial intelligence tracking cameras.

The TR311 and the TR313 include 12X optical zoom and 12X digital zoom to offer the range and picture quality to produce big-time productions. The TR311 features a 2MP camera with 1080p full HD while the TR313 includes 8MP with ultra HD 4K.

Both models have built-in advanced artificial intelligence (AI) technology with a Human Detection algorithm that allows you to track your speaker (full or half body) or pre-set shoot zones.

VuWall TRx 3.0 Brings Advanced Video Wall Management and AV-over-IP Distribution on a Single Platform

VuWall this week announced the release of TRx 3.0, now powered with VuTrex™ technology, as the first-to-market solution offering a single software platform that can distribute AV-over-IP content and provide advanced video wall management.

TRx 3.0 introduces a redesigned architecture, with its hybrid VuTrex technology, that can manage multiple sources in any source format and route them to single displays or multiple video walls without any programming.

Audio Visual Projects

Dream Chip’s ATOM Cameras Take Viewers on David Blaine’s Death-Defying Balloon Stunt with Him

AudioVideo BrandBuilder Corp (AVBB), the manufacturer’s rep and master distributor for Dream Chip in North and South America, provided cameras to 3g Wireless and RF Film, Inc. that took viewers on an up close and personal tour of David Blaine’s recent stunt: a balloon ride that had him floating nearly five miles above earth.

The event, titled “ASCENSION,” set a new record as the most-watched YouTube Originals live event to date with more than 770,000 global viewers watching simultaneously.

With nothing holding Blaine afloat other than an out-sized bouquet of 50 helium-filled balloons, he ascended 24,900 feet above the Arizona desert floor with six of Dream Chip’s ATOM cameras capturing the entire event exclusively from the air.

Working in partnership with 3g Wireless and RF Film, AVBB provided four ATOM 4k mini 16 cameras installed on arms extending from the balloon cluster and focused on Blaine, and a single ATOM One positioned downward from the balloon cluster.

A sixth ATOM camera, an ATOM One Mini Air, was affixed to Blaine’s custom flight vest designed and manufactured by RF Film. Built into Blaine’s vest was the video transmitter, audio system, custom antennas and RF switching unit, and GPS Tracking system.

On the receive end, RF Film provided a custom auto-tracking receive dish that 3g Wireless used to receive the video directly from the vest on the ground.

The cameras needed to perform flawlessly in extreme conditions with temperatures ranging from near 100 degrees Fahrenheit on the ground (and 130-140 degrees inside the payload balloon) to approximately 1 degree at the maximum altitude of 24,900’ with oxygen levels roughly half of those at sea level.  Camera size and weight were also primary factors as every gram mattered in the overall project.

“These incredibly small and light cameras were ideal for this project, with a high resolution and dynamic range providing crystal clear images not normally seen from cameras of this size,” said Nathan Spencer, EIC at 3g Wireless.

“We used them under the most challenging of conditions and they performed exceptionally well in the heat of the Arizona desert all the way up to the freezing temperatures at high altitude. Combined with 3g’s remote telemetry and video transmission systems, we maintained full control of them throughout the flight and watched the live images of David’s flight in awe – along with the rest of the world,” he said.

3g designed, manufactured and integrated the bespoke solutions to meet the unique requirements of the project.  Since this was a one-time only event with no “re-do’s” possible, the RF design plan had to include multiple redundant transmission systems.

It was key to have two video outputs from each camera allowing transmission of the images concurrently to the ground and up to the specially equipped plane which then retransmitted the video down to the ground.

In addition, 3g provided the RF links for the helicopter camera ship, the Steadicam used at the launch site and remote cameras at the landing area and also designed and provided the communications system that was used to speak with Blaine during flight.

“This project was the culmination of six months of design, manufacturing, integration and preparation,” said AVBB president Tommy Goodson. “Everything had to be perfect because the helicopter wasn’t able to fly to the altitude David achieved so the Dream Chip cameras were the primary broadcast source once he left the ground.”

BrightSign Players Take Off at Edinburgh Airport 

BrightSign media players are powering the video wall that adds a real wow factor to Edinburgh Airport’s new self-check-in facilities. The AV installation was carried out by nuVIDEO working with Midwich and PSCo.

The new installation is part of a multimillion-dollar redevelopment of the airport’s self-check-in facilities, designed to streamline the pre-flight experience for all passengers.

The goal was to create a 275-foot wide digital canvas that would allow the airport to display flight information, give wayfinding instructions and generate advertising revenue.

The canvas of 2,240 separate LED modules had to be easy to manage, with the flexibility to change the size of content from a small 5-foot wide window, all the way up to an end-to-end full wall display.

Completed in March in just over five weeks, the finished installation fully achieved its goal, enabling the screen not only to be used for passenger information, but also to showcase destinations and retail products with striking visuals.

A 275-foot seamless LED canvas, stretching the entire check-in hall, now stands proudly above a self-drop bag facility. BrightSign’s XT244 players deliver the airport’s media and advertising content to the display, providing sharp Full HD and 4K content in a low-maintenance solution.

Furthermore, the players have been used to display essential ‘FlySafe’ campaign information for passengers passing through the airport during the pandemic. The installation has potential for future expansion.

The installation creates a striking visual for all passengers entering the check-in hall and provides us with a screen to present a range of information,” said Adam Wilson, operations director of Edinburgh Airports Limited.

“In practical terms, we can clearly display where certain flights and airlines are checking in and show key passenger communications such as security information. The flexibility of the wall means we can also use it for video to advertise flight destinations, showcase Scottish scenery or promote our retail offering,” he said.

“We are delighted that our players are delivering vivid and crisp digital content to passengers at Edinburgh Airport,” said BrightSign CEO Jeff Hastings. “Flying can be a stressful experience when in a hurry or facing uncertain information, so we are pleased to be helping passengers relax and enjoy their journey.

“Once again, the reliability of our players has proven to be a standout feature, enabling our customers to count on them 24/7 in the most public locations,” he said.

MASARY Studios Brings Scottsdale Streets to Life with Epson Laser Projectors

As cities, festivals and museums look for safe and exciting ways to foster community engagement, Canal Convergence | Water + Art + Light, Scottsdale Public Art’s annual art experience, is at the forefront of reconnecting residents with the city.

Illuminating the streets of Scottsdale, Ariz. from Nov. 6-15, Canal Convergence alumni MASARY Studios will bring its community-driven public art expression “Massively Distributed” (MD) to life with enchanting, light-based artwork using high-performance Epson laser projectors.

MASARY Studios worked with the Scottsdale Public Art media team to capture audio and visual samples from Scottsdale for a creative palette that drives the web-based app instrument and public art installation.

Accessible across laptops, tablets and smartphones, MD encourages the public to find joy in creativity by submitting compositions from the site-specific media instrument for inclusion in the large-scale projection mapped installations.

MD will play back the “meta-compositions” through the video projections and professional sound systems, displaying the public’s submissions alongside those of their neighbors, other community members and even others from across the world.

“Canal Convergence is proud to present the engaging audio-visual installation ‘Massively Distributed’ by MASARY Studios in a safe and socially-distanced format,” said Jennifer Gill, public art manager for Canal Convergence.

“Crowd-sourced from a web-based app created by MASARY Studios, using the sights and sounds of Scottsdale, Epson projectors are central in our effort to make this project accessible to many people as they safely enjoy the work,” she said.

“Massively Distributed” will be presented in three prominent locations throughout Old Town Scottsdale. Each location will use two Epson Pro L1755U projectors along with a variety of compatible Epson lenses to display artwork onto a building facade.

MASARY Studios will use LANG frames to stack the two 15,000 lumen1 Epson projectors to display double the light output. Stacking allows for a more compact, efficient installation that can be powered from standard 120V sources.

Using the Epson projectors’ built-in tools, MASARY Studios will blend images to create one seamless large-scale work of art.

“We hope to reconnect people with one another, as well as with the cities they live in, through our ‘Massively Distributed’ project at Canal Convergence this year,” said Sam Okerstrom-Lang, media artist, founder and principal at MASARY Studios.

“MD expands from samples of the Arizona landscape, to the palm of your hand when interacting, and then ultimately the scale of buildings through public video projection,” he said. “The Epson projectors allowed us to converge images and create massive, bright pieces of art that pop beautifully to make our artistic vision really come into full picture for the public.”

Canal Convergence will take place Nov. 6-15 with artwork throughout Old Town Scottsdale and the Arizona Canal at the Scottsdale Waterfront. The annual art experience is free for the public to attend and offers livestreamed performances as well as in-person events held at the Scottsdale Center for Performing Arts.

“We continue to be amazed by artists and their ability to unleash creativity using projection,” said Ramzi Shakra, product manager for large-venue projectors at Epson America.

“At a time when people crave in-person experiences, ‘Massively Distributed’ offers a unique way for people to reconnect with their city and express creativity through safe interactions with the artwork they are viewing,” he said.

People and Places

rp Visual Solutions Adds Business Development Director

rp Visual Solutions (RPV) this week announced the addition of David Wood as business development director.

Wood will work directly with AV manufacturers, strategic end users, and key AV integrators to grow and create new business relationships and partnerships.

He is based in southern California, where he has spent more than 25 years in the AV community, including 16 years in various roles at AMX and Harman. Wood will be working from RPV’s Anaheim office.

Artel Video Systems Joins Arista Partner Program

Artel Video Systems this week announced that the company has become a member of the Arista Partner Program.

Artel’s membership in the Arista Networks program formalizes the companies’ collaboration in bringing shared customers complete switching solutions that extend from the network core to the network edge.

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