Tech Topics

Kung Fu Lighting

Posted on Friday, September 29th, 2017

By Chris Lose

A Tale of Lighting, Confusion and Pandas in the Land of the Red Dragon

Lighting direction has taken me all over the world for some extravagant gigs in far-off lands. I have been asked what it’s like to travel for work in so many foreign countries. I can tell you that, for the most part, it is similar to what you are used to. It’s just the same loading dock in a different country. The food is a little different, the money is a different color and the stagehands speak only slightly less English than at home.

Except for China. China is a different world altogether. China’s booming economy has made it one of the most candidate-short markets in Asia. This is forcing Chinese companies to look abroad for skilled technicians and programmers.

Read the full article at: http://plsn.com/current-issue/6-ld-at-large/23740-kung-fu-lighting.html

 

How to choose the right LED Video Screen for your next event

Posted on Wednesday, August 30th, 2017

By Arosh Fernando, Woohah Productions

The use of LED Video Screen technology has rapidly increased in the events market. From stadium concerts to product launches, LED Video Screens can be a creative medium for your next event. In this article we want to cover the basics of how to choose the right LED Video Screen product for your next event.

PIXEL PITCH – This is one of the most important questions you need to ask regarding a LED Video Screen. Pixel pitch refers to the physical distance between the LED’s placed on the screen. The lower the distance, the higher the resolution and the image quality will be. A 3mm pixel pitch is a much higher resolution and better viewing experience than a 20mm pixel pitch screen.

TRANSPARENT or SOLID PANELS – LED Panels can be used in many different applications and creative ways. The backing of the panels can designed to be semi- transparent, allowing wind to pass through and reduce the weight of the product.

This is helpful for outdoor events and allows for some creative ideas such as placing lights or more LED video tiles behind the open panels. For presentations and other critical viewing applications, a solid panel will be more useful to ensure no ambient light or distractions bleed through onto the picture.

WEIGHT – Depending on the engineering limitations of your event space, this might become a serious consideration when choosing the right LED Video Screen. Weight of products range from those with heavy steel frames to those with modern ultra-light weight carbon fibre structures. In cases where the venue can’t support the weight of your desired video screen, stacking the LED Video Wall from the ground may also be possible.

BRIGHTNESS – Models available in LED Video Screen products range in maximum brightness. Some are bright enough for only indoor use and some are bright enough for outdoor use. Even the lowest brightness screen can resist much higher ambient lighting environment that typical projector setups.

If you have an outdoor event with direct sunlight onto the screen, the brightness of the screen should be in the range of 5000+ nits*

*Nits are a measure of brightness per square meter of area, this is a different unit of measurement to how projectors are rated.

UNIFORMITY OF COLOUR – LED Video Screens are produced in batches to ensure uniform performance of the LED diodes. If you have an LED Video Screen made up with paneling produced at multiple times / batches, uniformity of the colour produced won’t be consistent. A blue background on the screen will vary in hue over the image resulting in a disappointing presentation.

ASPECT RATIO – the ratio of the width to the height of the screen surface.

Unlike projector screens and televisions, LED Screens can be assembled in creative ways that are not restricted to a standard 16:9 or 4:3 aspect ratio. The aspect ratio of the screen needs to be considered when designing content to be played back to ensure a well fitting presentation.

Hope the information has helped you in choosing the right LED Screen for your next event.

WooHah Productions, is one of Australia’s largest LED Screen providers for corporate events and concerts. We have dedicated ourselves to putting together ‘world class’ events around Australia. We prioritise innovation and creativity, in designing audio/visual solutions, coupled with our distinctive ‘human’ approach to service.

http://woohahproductions.com.au

 

Tech Topic: The Unmentionables

Posted on Thursday, August 24th, 2017

By Brad Schiller

The set of skills one must master to work as an automated lighting programmer range from lighting knowledge to console syntax to organization, and much more. Most people are aware of the common abilities that a programmer must become proficient with in order to provide a great programming experience.

However, there are other non-spoken, or unmentionable, skills that every programmer needs to learn and improve throughout their careers. Without adding the following abilities to the mix, a programmer will be severely deficient at accomplishing the required programming for the production.

Read the full article at: http://plsn.com/current-issue/10-feeding-the-machines/23545-the-unmentionables.html

 

Tech Topic: It’s Simply Data Entry

Posted on Monday, July 24th, 2017

By Brad Schiller

Automated lighting programmers must be very skilled at programming for various types of productions and designers. In most cases, there is a great collaborative working relationship that allows the programmer to share in the creative vision along with the LD. However, there are some shows and LDs that require the programmer to simply enter data into the desk without regard to the end result on stage. In many cases this will occur in theatrical environments, but it could also occur as part of a programming session with any production. It is very important for programmers to be ready to switch to a working format that is purely data entry.

Read the full article at: http://plsn.com/current-issue/10-feeding-the-machines/23248-it-s-simply-data-entry.html

 

“The Great One” and Stage Lighting

Posted on Friday, June 23rd, 2017

By Chris Lose

A good LD lights where the guitarist is supposed to be. A great LD lights where the guitarist is going to be.

I recently moved from Las Vegas to Canada for a number of reasons. One reason for moving is the current political climate in the U.S. Canada has proven to be very polite and rather pleasant. I moved to a small community where my services as a concert lighting director might not be in high demand. Belle River does not have any casinos, convention centers, ballrooms or arenas. But it does have hockey rinks — lots of them.

Read the full article at: http://plsn.com/current-issue/6-ld-at-large/22973-the-great-one-and-stage-lighting.html

 

Be Kind to Your Friends in the Shop

Posted on Tuesday, May 30th, 2017

By Chris Lose

I’m a firm believer that people who have spent time in the shop have a better understanding of the lighting business than those who have not. I am lucky enough to have spent four knuckle-busting years in the shops of Vari*Lite, Morpheus and Cinelease. I was there to receive hand written shop orders, assemble gear, tech lights and repair rain-drenched VL6s and Mac 2Ks that came back from multiple Olympics from around the globe.

The knowledge that came from those years has made me a better programmer and a more patient director. The shop is where theater people and non-theater people alike, work together to compile the necessary tools to make entertainment happen. Sometimes, those people have an idea of what happens to the gear after it leaves the dock, but some do not.

In this article, I would like to impart some knowledge from both sides of the dock door onto you. By reading this dissertation, you will be able to go forth and help the team of hard working, underappreciated men and women in the shop to help you ………..

Read the full article at: http://plsn.com/current-issue/6-ld-at-large/22764-be-kind-to-your-friends-in-the-shop.html

 

Tech Topic: Patching Prestidigitation

Posted on Monday, May 1st, 2017

by Brad Schiller

Anyone who wants to learn about automated lighting programming must study and master one very important task: Patching. Without this ability, the data within the desk will not be able to communicate properly with the connected fixtures and other devices. Patching requires an understanding of a console’s specific methodologies, DMX fundamentals and intimate details of the lighting rig layout. No matter the show or the console, a programmer must properly patch the system to actually control lighting units.

Read the full article at: http://plsn.com/current-issue/10-feeding-the-machines/22524-patching-prestidigitation.html