The 22nd Journées Techniques du Spectacle et de l’Événement took place recently in the Docks de Paris, on 27th and 28th November 2018.
This event is dedicated to lighting, audio and technical machinery (plus fabrics, seating, accessories and so on) for stage events. It is attended by thousands of visitors every year – rivalled, this year, by Heavent, a professional event trade show, taking place on the same dates on the other side of Paris.
JTSE’s main exhibition hall hosted around 140 exhibitors. Two more halls were used: one for lighting, hosting 14 “black boxes” (for Adam Hall/Cameo, ADB, AED, Algam, AVAB, Axente, Chauvet, Christie, ClayPaky, Dimatec, ESL, Freevox, Juliat, and Robe), another hosting six “silent” workshop/training sessions hosted by Avid, Best Audio, EVI Audio France, Freevox, Lawo and Yamaha Music Europe. That’s where the latest live mixing desks could be seen and tested. In this “audio demo” hall, some conferences took place, under the topic “present technologies” – immersive sound reinforcement, 100% LED lighting or Eco-design European directive presentation, for example.
Some exhibitors had arranged specific sessions in small rooms on the first floor. For example Freevox had some sound spatialisation demos with SPAT, a sophisticated plug-in, to show it could be used very simply. On the floor itself, d&b had installed a “small” Soundscape configuration on its booth, to show that convincing immersive sound can be realistically obtained with a restricted number of “small” speakers. In fact, this could be 2018 JTSE’s trend: to show that technologies considered as difficult can actually be easy to use, from immersive sound to huddle room AV conferencing.
There was no “big new product” in the show – in fact, distributors were still waiting for some already announced products, not yet available. Below are some of the recently introduced audio products spotted on the show. As you can see, IP is everywhere!
- The Audio-technica ATDM-0604 automatic mixer was designed and optimised for meetings, conferences and soft codec applications. It includes Audio-technica’s SmartMixer technology, mixing automatically 8 audio channels, plus acoustic echo cancellation, presets, web remote functionality and more. Up to six ATDM-604 can be cascaded via Cat5 cable.
- The AT ES954 four-capsule condenser microphone is a “natural” complement for this mixer: hanging above the meeting table, its signals are treated by a specific function to ensure a perfect 360°-intelligibility on the participant voices, with fine-tuning by 30° angles.
- AT’s 3000 Series wireless system also seems very interesting for its price: it uses UHF frequency bands, with True Diversity mode, on three 60MHz frequency bands. The range includes a one-channel receiver, a pocket transmitter and a hand transmitter (6 Audio-Technica capsules are available, plus other compatible brands). Usual functions are available: frequency synchronisation via IR link, automatic squelch, rechargeable or traditional batteries.
- The BSS DCP-555 is a template-based digital conferencing processor, leveraging high-end BSS technologies (signal processing, automated mixing) to meet the needs of meeting spaces. Easy to use, it offers 4 bidirectional VoIP links, analogue (8 inputs, 16 outputs), USB and BLU-link connectors. It includes tunings for AKG microphones and JBL speakers, and is programmed via its web-server interface.
- Two new AVB audio interfaces were presented by RME: Digiface AVB and M-32 Pro AVB. The first one has been available since 2017; its AVB version uses USB3 protocol, Gibabit Ethernet networks and handles 256 audio channels (128 in, 128 out), grouped in 16 input and 16 output streams. Included DSP runs TotalMix FX and TotalMix Remote softwares, for mixing/routing (without effects) and remote control. The M-32 Pro AVB is available in AD and DA versions. Both are high-end audio converters, enabling 2 x 32-channel conversions up to 192kHz sampling frequency. There are two MADI ports and wordclock BNC and SC optical connectors. It can be used in immersive sound installations, live sound systems and any high analogue channel count applications.
- French audio distributor Audiopole has been selling a regulation-compliant sound pressure level display panel/recorder for years. The SPL DISPLAY is widely used in fixed installations like concert halls, bars and so on. New for the JTSE show, a “touring” version was presented: it is now equipped with XLR connectors instead of Euroblocks, uses an integrated power supply and handles two microphones (one for the dB (A) value, one for the dB (C) value), to be placed in the most appropriate places. There’s even an XLR socket mock-up inside the panel, to safely store one of the measurement microphones.
- Frenetik is a brand new French audio brand, owned by Axente, designing and manufacturing products for fixed installations using Dante networks with PoE. Affordable and cleverly made, they can be considered like bricks sound designers and integrators can use according to their needs. There are 3”, 5” and 6” speakers, a 8” subwoofer, 8” ceiling speakers, PoE power injectors and distributors (with full power on each port), Dante microphone interface included in a heavy base with XLR connector.
- Attero Tech’s Axon D2FLEXio is a Dante/PoE line level I/O interface that provides cost-effective analogue audio connectivity for installed AV systems. Each analogue audio connector has a switch to assign it to input or output-role: 2×0, 1×1 or 0x2. “Pro” and “consumer” line levels are supported, A/D conversion is 24-bit/44.1 to 96kHz, and the box is also AES67-compatible.
- French speaker manufacturer Amadeus showed its brand new HOLOPHONIX immersive sound processor: an ambitious project, embedding seven different specialisation algorithms running on a Linux platform, a convivial user interface, Dante networking and OSC compatibility. It handles 128 inputs and 128 outputs in 24bits/96kHz resolution, and is already used in several theatres like Palais de Chaillot, Théâtre du Vieux Colombier and others.
- Dynacord IPX is a range of multi-channel amplifiers for fixed installations. They are OCA and Dante-compatible, and are built on the OMNEO IP architecture. Four 2U models are available: 10:4 (4 x 2500W), 10:8 (8 x 1250W), 20:4 (4 x 5000W) and 5:4 (4 x 1250W). All use Class D technology, 96kHz digital signal processing, an advanced power management system. Complete remote control and supervision are available via IRIS-Net software.
- The SSL Fusion is a stereo analogue processor including 5 new processors: enhancer, 2-band Violet EQ, high frequencies compressor, stereo image management and output transformer, plus a high-pass filter and a stereo insert point. It is designed for the “hybrid” studios, to get the best of analogue and digital worlds.
Clearly, as we have seen elsewhere around the world, the areas of live sound and installed and networked audio are getting much of the attention when it comes to new product development. And those markets continue to create demands of manufacturers and integrators who are all striving to deliver innovative and increasingly capable solutions that are quicker and easier to install, commission and operate.
And the French market is clearly alive and well and as always, JTSE reflects how busy and exciting the entertainment and installation technology business is currently and how the various brands and personalities are very happy to come together to talk together about the latest developments.
By Isabelle Wear
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