InfoComm 2012 has begun. Las Vegas is teeming with excitement, as some 30,000+ AV professionals fill the halls of the Las Vegas Convention Centre. As I arrived late tuesday night, I was not able explore the floor under construction but from my twitter feed alone, you know the exhibitors and attendees were ready to roll, excited for the floor to open.
So with that excitement buzzing around my head, I was ready to go quite early Wednesday morning. After a quick stop across the street at my favorite seattle coffee establishment for some sugar motivation, I jumped into the transportation line at TI. After a minor wait I had arrived at LVCC, got registered for the show and met up with some of my people from AVNation.tv. Like a proper show, Randy Lemke opened the show at 9 AM sharp with the official ribbon cutting. And just like that, Infocomm 2012 is open and going. I had a pretty busy schedule for the first day and thought I’d I share a few of my highlights from the first day.
First things first, I had to stop by Draper to see some of their new screen fabric offerings. They showed off a very nice new screen fabric that allows a super wide viewing angle, but what really caught my eye was the Stage Screens portable screen system. This is a modular portable screen system that allows to you to stock a variety of screen fabrics and sizes and then use the modular truss-type system to make whatever size screen you need. Pretty amazing stuff that has a ton of rental and staging applications but also great application for any traveling performance system.
As I continued to walk the floor I spotted Meyer Sound and made a bee line to their booth. Any one who knows me knows that I do a lot of work in the HOW market and I discovered two gems that you should check out. The first was the Mina Compact Array. This is a very small format Rack Array system that has a very high 128 dB rating with 100 degree coverage. A very cool product that I was instantly looking at specifying for some upcoming projects. The other super cool product I saw from Meyer Sound was the CAL or Column Array Loudspeaker. This piece is a great product for the traditional HOW sanctuary or hall, where spoken word is paramount. Meyer showed both the CAL 32 and CAL 69 respectively. The CAL 32 has 8-4-inch drivers and 24 tweeters, while the CAL 64 has 16-4-inch drivers and 48 tweeters, both in a very sleek package.
I continued my search for the latest and greatest on the show floor when I saw something that didn’t make sense. At the front of the Premier Mounts booth, there was a Panasonic 85-inch Professional Plasma Display mounted to a stand on a 45 Degree angle. Seemly stuck half way between a traditional mounting method and a digital signage portrait display. And then I saw what blew my mind, the huge 400lbs+ plasma rotated by hand. With these screens, mounted to the Premier Mounts mobile cart, you can easily rotate these huge screens around to provide the exact mounting angle you need for your mounting needs.
One of the few products that I had preplanned on finding on the floor and getting hands on and a full demo on was the PreSonus Studio Live digital sound mixer. Now the marketing campaign for this product seems to be pretty strong and makes this board look very attractive. But I know how the ad industry works and am never one to buy into the hype without getting hands on with the actual product. So upon stopping by their booth, I got the marketing spell from one of their guys and then really got into it with ‘demo time’. We demo’d the StudioLive 24-4-2 and I was really impressed with how easy it was to just pick up and start to use. This board works just like a traditional analog board and is pretty straight forward for anyone to work. With HOW one of the biggest issues that needs to be addressed on almost every project is the volunteer factor. In HOW, most times the operators are volunteers who aren’t trained audio engineers and need to be able to operate the boards as easily as possible. This is where the Studio Live shines, not only is the digital board easy to use. But with a full feature iPad app and an iphone app, you can control the entire system directly from the iPad app. You can also use the iPhone app to control the mix of each monitor send. All told, this is a board I really want to test live.
This is only a sprinkling of what I was yesterday during the show. With so many exhibitors on the floor, I’ll have many more amazing pieces of tech that you need to know about!
May your future be bright and your lights dim!
Matt D. Scott is the president and founder of OMEGA Audio Video, in London, Ontario. Matt had his first encounter with Pro-Audio at age 6 when a PA loudspeaker fell, cracking his head, and leaving a scar to this day. After mopping up the blood, Matt started his AV career and has been working in Pro AV, Commercial AV, and Residential AV ever since. Matt loves the industry and all things tech! A self-professed TechHead, Matt shares his opinions on social media, local radio, on omegaaudiovideo.com, on mattdscott.com, and through various publications.