The MF/V (MF/5) from Main Light

Marcel over at The Captain’s Blog (the Gearsource blog) posted an article about the Main Light MF/V LED panel moving head back in the first third of June.  For some reason I’m just now reading it – moving across the coutry does a number on your Firefox tabs, doesn’t it?

Main Light’s LED panel head looks pretty cool – seems to have fast pan and tilt, reasonable output, and decent video processing.  Check out this video:

Main Light’s page on MF/V is here – and thanks, Marcel!



I’m Sorry to Hear About Michael Jackson, Patrick Woodroffe and Crew

Yes, Michael Jackson passed away this last week.  The CNN gang refused to let us know about that little fact (I’m a CNN watcher, it’s true) and by day three I was pretty sure that Michael Jackson had still departed this Earth.

What no one is talking about, however, is the fact that in addition to the rental costs that the supply companies (PRG) are going to lose, the MJ crew and designers are now out of work.  Don’t get me wrong, they’re all seasoned professionals, and I bet they will still all have work.  What I am most bummed about is that now we don’t get to see the wonderment, high production and design values, and overall art that the team had almost created.  Unless the “King of Pop” is planning a publicity stunt and we’re all about to be totally duped, these folks are out of a gig – and we all miss out on the excellent work, reviews, trade publications, and other cool stuff that happens when a huge show hits the papers.  Patrick Woodroffe, I was looking forward to reviewing your work.  I’ll just catch the next one.

I really hope that the networks at least spend 15 seconds talking about the production.  From what I am hearing, it was huge, and pretty beautiful.  I’m sorry to Michael Jackson’s family, friends, and fans about his passing, as it blows to lose a friend – but I’m also sorry that the people who make him look and sound so good are now out of work.  I hope you folks all find new work, and in short order.

Debi Moen is Leaving High End

debi moen

I want to extend my gratitude to a strong member of the High End/Barco team that is leaving to pursue other ventures – Debi Moen, a 15 year veteran at High End Systems as a Marketing Communications Specialist, is onward and upward.  Thanks for always being so nice to me, Debi!

From, good luck in your next thing!

Uber Glue – The Disco Biscuits at Red Rocks, 5-30-2009

I’ve heard nothing but praise for Johnny R. Goode’s lighting design for The Disco Biscuits at Red Rocks Ampitheatre here in Morrison, CO for what the band called Bisco Inferno back at the end of May.  I was very sad that I wasn’t able to attend that show and chat with Johnny afterwards, but I was making money at another gig in another part of the country, so the emotions all worked themselves out.  Next time, Johnny, as I want to chronicle the new gear and ideas you put into the rig!

Here’s some video of the show – also, check out my interview with Johnny R. Goode for The Podcast.

Guess Who’s Touring? SHOWBEAM 2.5!

showbeam 2.5

The Showbeam 2.5 from Barco/High End is out rocking the road.  Butch Allen has some out with No Doubt, Loz Upton has some out with Crystal Method, and Brian Hartley has some ShowBeams out with Aerosmith.  Here’s the press release from High End Systems:

No Doubt, The Crystal Method and the upcoming Aerosmith tour have one thing in common: they all are debuting a new Barco product — the High End Systems SHOWBEAM 2.5 — in their shows.

The SHOWBEAM 2.5 is a new 2500-watt automated wash luminaire, distinguishing itself with a revolutionary Twin Beam. This feature allows for two hard-edge beams to exit the fixture on command, with variable control over the Twin Beam deviation and rotation speed — all with little brightness degradation. Users may add incremental color to the Twin Beam by using the CMY color mixing system.

No Doubt’s Lighting Designer Butch Allen says, “These lights are amazing. Well done!” Tour lighting contractor Epic Production Technologies is supplying 6 SHOWBEAM 2.5s, along with 6 High End Systems DL.3 Digital Lights. No Doubt went out on its North American tour May 2.

The Crystal Method’s LD Lawrence “Loz” Upton says, “First of all you can use SHOWBEAM 2.5 as a very powerful washlight. I love the colors, and I love the colors with the ring of LEDs and it works really well in the show with our circular trussing. The next thing is, at a moment’s notice, you can just turn on the Twin Beam effect and it’s pretty hallucinogenic because you go from a beam focus and then all of a sudden you’ve got this crazy two-beam focus that comes in, which is just awesome. It also has a cool oscillation effect. This is an effects driven show and SHOWBEAM 2.5 adds to the layers of looks to match our layers of sound. The High End Systems products are very innovative and they work well for me personally.”

Delicate Productions is the lighting contractor for the tour, which kicked off May 5 in North America. In addition to SHOWBEAM 2.5, the Crystal Method tour includes SHOWGUN, StudioPix, Axon, CLM projectors with control from a Wholehog 3 and DMX Processor 8000.

Aerosmith’s North American tour starts June 10. Lighting Designer Bryan Hartley says, “SHOWBEAM 2.5 will work out great in my design. I’m excited about using it. I needed a strong washlight and the Twin Beam is really cool. Plus it has the LED ring, which gives it a SHOWGUN look. I’ll have 10 SHOWBEAMs in my rig for the tour, and I’m psyched.”

Hartley will control the lighting with a Wholehog 3 console and a DMX 8000 processor. Creative Stage Lighting is supplying the SHOWBEAM 2.5s to Epic Production Technologies, the lighting contractor.

Creative Stage Lighting’s George Studnicky IV says, “High End Systems knows what designers want. Another year goes by and HES brings another innovation and benchmark to the table. It’s a very exciting time to be in our industry. With the further development of LEDs and the automated lighting market, there is truly a custom design to every show you see. The SHOWBEAM 2.5 with the Twin Beam effect and interesting internal wash lens adds to this ability.”

SHOWBEAM 2.5 also features a user-changeable fixed color wheel, a variable CTO and the ability to produce an 11-degree fixed hard-edge profile with fast color change and Electronic Strobe. An LED tracking system encircles the lens. The profile can be rapidly zoomed from 11 to 33 degrees.

Look for SHOWBEAM 2.5 and other Barco lighting and control products to make more headlines as the touring season hits the heights this summer.

A Fully Solar Powered Stadium

solar stadium

Okay, wow.  Toyo Ito has designed a 100% solar powered stadium for the 2009 World Games that has a 40,000 seat capacity, can feed its excess power back into the community during the off-season, and has over 8,000 solar panels on its roof.  Some info from the World Games website on the stadium:

The whole construction of the Main Stadium, with a capacity of 40,000 seats, designed by Toyo Ito, only required two years of work, and was finally tested for lighting facilities on January 15, 2009. It took over six minutes to power up the lighting in the stadium, which illuminates the track and field with 3,300 lux. Two jumbotrons screens on each side of the stadium, along with a surround sounding system, make this an international standard soccer field and facility, ensuring that it is the perfect venue for the opening and closing ceremonies, as well as the Rugby 7s and Flying Disc events.

The City of Kaohsiung is particularly proud of this project. During the construction period, no site accidents occurred, while the construction crew successfully overcame the technical difficulties presented by installing spiral steel girders and 8,844 solar panels on the roof.

Moreover, this stadium is notable for its eco-friendliness: the solar panels on the stadium roof generate 1.14 million kWh of electricity per year, thus reducing 660 tons of annual carbon dioxide output. In addition, all the raw materials used in the main stadium are 100% reusable and made in Taiwan.

This is amazing.  Think of it – something that is built that is actually sustainable.  I’m getting a little exhausted with all of the greenwashing lately, especially when 75% of it is total crap.

solar stadium

solar stadium

taiwan solar stadium

world games 2009

Thanks, MetaEfficient!