First look at grandMA3
Posted on Tuesday, January 9th, 2018
Founded on the legacy of the previous grandMA consoles, the grandMA3 represents a radical re-think of what’s possible from a lighting control platform. The elegant new system-architecture incorporates new fixture, feature and effects-handling at its very heart.
The system features ground-breaking concepts from top industry visionaries, presented within a refined user interface, and is designed to make practical tasks more intuitive.
The physical design detail of the grandMA3 range is extraordinary and focused on delivering the best possible user experience, now and into the future.
The grandMA3 full-size and light models feature huge multi-touch screen surface area; All dedicated encoder and playback information is accessed directly on the letterbox screens allowing the larger screens to be fully-configured to suit user needs.
Work without boundaries
grandMA3 breaks the limitations of Local Area Networks (LAN) with the ability to access Wide Area Networks (WAN). Software updates, technical support, online help and fixture downloads are all features to be supported within the WAN framework.
Using the advanced MA-Net3 protocol, grandMA3 systems can output up to 250,000 parameters. There are three sizes of grandMA3 processing units to expand the console parameter count.
Robust and durable
The grandMA3 full-size and light models incorporate a sophisticated thermal design, transferring heat to a cooling corridor, which insolates critical components from harmful dust and keeps fan-noise to a whisper.
The lightweight chassis has been designed for durability and easy handling. The large screen housing on the full-size and light models have a dual friction hinge system, providing fast-folding for portability whilst ensuring maximum visibility for users.
The grandMA3 control software utilizes a flexible new fixture concept, developed to replicate the real-world physical components of the most complex fixtures. All features of the new fixture concept are generic, allowing intuitive control of all possible fixtures.
Feature-mapping of the dual-wheel encoders is customizable, facilitating ease of use and faster programming.
Enhanced playback capability
Long-life motorized playback faders are used across the entire grandMA3 console range. The faders incorporate a color-changing light pipe.
A fully flexible assignment of playback functionality allows for 30% more playback handles than any previous grandMA series console. All playbacks have direct access to button pushes as well as intensity and timing changes thanks to the new rotary RGB backlit encoders.
Key to the future
New buttons have been specifically developed for the grandMA3 consoles, to satisfy the needs of the most demanding users.
The almost-silent buttons feature low travel and have a positive actuation-point, ensuring fast, accurate operation and a tactile experience that professional users will appreciate.
Even the backlit button-caps have been ergonomically optimized to reduce mis-hits.
grandMA3 has a refined user interface designed to be ergonomic yet fully featured. Users can customize their workflow to incorporate favorite options and features, without cluttering their workspace. Standard default-configurations for screen views and playback layout are fully featured but can be customized, providing a new level of flexibility that many grandMA console users will appreciate.
Advanced processing technology
At the heart of the grandMA3 control system is a powerful new MA designed processing engine featuring high performance Intel® technology. The capacity and power of the cutting-edge hardware is far in excess of current requirements, allowing plenty of headroom for future developments.Integration
In addition to the lighting control capabilities, the grandMA3 software features an integrated 3D visualiser for pre-programming, and the ability to manipulate and playback basic media content directly from within the console.
Designed from the ground-up to incorporate audio and video content, grandMA3 software provides seamless interaction across the platform
A consistent theme for MA Lighting consoles is connectivity, and the grandMA3 console is no exception. All console variants come with a full set of hardware connections suitable for Midi, LTC, Audio in and out, local Trigger inputs and multiple Ethernet connections for expanded functionality.
Dynamic effects are no longer restricted to just two step modulated parameters. The grandMA3 software has a totally new effects concept allowing, multi-step effect sequences to be nested inside a cue or preset. “Phasers” are treated just like static parameter values and respect normal programming syntax.
onPC versions of the grandMA3 software are available for Windows 10 and macOS®. The grandMA3 onPC Windows version can be used in conjunction with the grandMA3 onPC command wing and grandMA3 onPC XPort Nodes as standalone systems. The grandMA3 macOS® version can only be used as a preprogramming tool, back-up or as a designer display.
The grandMA3 control consoles are compatible with shows created on grandMA2 consoles. Where features allow, existing shows can be exported from grandMA2 software 3.4 for use in all grandMA3 console models.
The grandMA3 full-size and light console models also incorporate fully featured Mode2, which runs native grandMA2 software version 3.4 and later.