On Monday we went off on some visits to local lighting-type things in
around Munich. First stop, PlazaMedia TV Studios: I'd never been to a
TV studio before, and I was interested in seeing whether they were
actually as boring as people always make out. Our survey says - *DING*.
This place mostly hosts local live sports and quiz shows, and the sets
were rather small and dull. Most interesting was their greenscreen
studio, which used a system of infrared cameras on the grid to pinpoint
the actual camera location/orientation to sync in the background (this
is the reverse of the BBC's Free-D setup).
1st Jun 2005, 00:30
As a student I'd been sponsored by the good folks of Selecon to attend Showlight, so I really should mention some of their fantastic products.
If you're familiar with conventional stage lanterns you'll probably know that they don't usually look like this - that bent-around shape is a distinctive feature of Selecon's unique Pacific range of fixed and zoom profiles. The lamp is actually held in the bent bit (near the red handle in the second shot) and the beam is then reflected off a mirror into the gate: the advantage comes with the massive heatsink built onto the mirror, drawing off heat and leaving a very clean, very cool beam. A cool beam means increased life for gobos, colour and the way you shape your beam - and it lets you use plastic transparencies that you can print from your own computer instead of really expensive custom glass gobos.
That amazingly long lantern in the top picture is Selecon's new 5degree fixed profile, which uses real glass optics for a suburb beam over very long throws. It's a niche design for huge opera houses, really.
The shorter fixture in the second picture is the relatively new 45-75degree zoom, which looks like it might be an even better, more flexible concept than the still-unmatched 90degree Pacific profile.
The Pacific range was designed to be entirely modular, so lens units, lamp housings and gate fixtures can all be swopped around - even the 80v or MSR systems which we also had on the stand. They're certainly not for everybody, but these lanterns are making a nice name for themselves.
1st Jun 2005, 00:28
During breaks between conference sessions (typically each with two
speakers or panels) the stage curtain pulled back to reveal the
exhibition/trade show. It wasn't really a trade show, not like Plasa or
even the ABTT show, this was much more of a social forum, as much about
the people as the equipment they represented.
1st Jun 2005, 00:27
One of the U-bahn stations (it might have been Königsplatz) must've been near a museum or summat, 'cos the platform was divided by these classical friezes. And there was another one with these freaky face-things that always seemed to pull up next to the window I was sitting at.
1st Jun 2005, 00:25
Every day I'd take the U-Bahn, riding the U2 line from the Franfurter
Ring down into Hauptbahnhof, then up the U4 to the Prinzregentenplatz.
The trains seem to have a greater acceleration than London's
Underground, but it was hard to tell what the top speed was. Most of
the stations seemed very empty for the amount of platform space they
1st Jun 2005, 00:25
Munich's in Bavaria - plenty of sturdy-looking buildings around the
1st Jun 2005, 00:22
The students of the TheaterAkademie had set up a demo to compare
different projection screens - even in this low-fi pic you can see
there are colour and transmission differences, but it was even more
interesting to see the subtle changes between the different screens.
Then we found ourselves a beergarden and some rather large tankards:
how those barmaids carried five in each hand is a mystery.
1st Jun 2005, 00:06
The opening welcome booze-up was in this rather lovely ballroom-thing
next to the auditorium. Lovely and overly-fancy ceiling painting.
1st Jun 2005, 00:06