Innovative product musings

Product innovation - part art, part science. When done right, it creates leverage, enabling innovations in small teams to shift entire industries.

A day at PLASA in London

After my first day at PLASA 2015, there was no denying it - the show is again smaller than previous year. Fewer exhibitors, some major brands like Martin Professional not exhibiting (nor did they in 2014). There was plenty of free space towards the back of the hall. Rumor has it that it will move back in to central London again for 2016, some say to Kensington Olympia where the show once started. The Excel exhibition centre is very nice and functional but oh so inconvenient to reach and in a rather unexciting part of east London, far from the nightlife in the centre.

Still - good show to meet people and there are always some nuggets to be found. Here follows part #1 of a very informal and personal reportage.

Interesting product #1 - the Dalis LED cyc light from Robert Juliat

This is a very innovative and so far unique take on the LED cyc light challenge. The good people at Robert Juliat are for sure not the first to try but it looks like they have really hit the nail on the head with this one.

The Dalis features no less than eight LED colours - red, green, blue, warm-white (2200K), cold white (6500K), amber, cyan and royal blue. These LEDs are combined in a special reflector device, four colours per reflector. Total power draw is 300W for a 1m section. Convection cooled, no fan noise.

And - it really works. The asymmetrical distribution is said to enable up to 8m coverage in height when the Dalis is places some 1.5m from the cyclorama. I saw some pictures from a recent test that seemed to confirm this. Certainly the units on display at the booth of Ambersphere did a very good job lighting up a 5-6m white wall in good way.

Interesting product #2 - the XPD-28 from Swisson

There are plenty of DMX signal splitters on the market. What Swisss company Swisson has done is to combine the splitter with a refresh speed adjustment feature. Certain products misbehave when presented with a DMX signal at full speed. The XPD-28 allows you to set the output refresh rate independent on the input rate. Swisson calls this feature "DMX deaccelerator" - maybe DMX break would have been more straightforward? But hey, they're Swiss! The units works with RDM and each output is individually selectable between 'A' and 'B' input as well as optically isolated.

It takes a village...

Some exhibitors didn't get the memo about the show scaling down - AC Entertainment Technologies being the 'worst offender' with a massive booth, no village, using 110 rigging point and over one kilometer of truss. All joking aside, nice to see someone willing to spend a fortune of making a statement.

Space Force from Chroma-Q

The Chroma-Q brand was well featured in the AC Village. New for this year was the Space Force softlight that is claimed to be equivalent to a 6kW tungsten space light but with a fraction of that power draw. Variable colour temperature and some nifty features should make this a real contender in the highly competitive film & tv lighting market.

They've got balls!

Another major player, WhiteLight, had a very fetching stand with a ceiling of LED spheres.

That's all from my day #1 - more to follow tomorrow.


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