Elbowing our way through the teeming halls of Amsterdam’s RAI Centre, we were astonished at the runaway success of this show – easily matching IBC as a trade forum to stretch the very boundaries of the venue. To pull this off right between NAMM and ProLight+Sound is particularly impressive, although we do realize that the core of the show is a market newly identified by ISE with more natural links to InfoComm and CEDIA.

With DSP a given and IP (Internet Protocol) emerging as the glue that might get more things integrated than ever before, ISE has caught a moment when technology and business models can really gel – despite genuine skepticism from those who feel that the off-the-shelf infrastructure of IT systems will always limit programme quality.

The significant audio presence seems to us to suggest that, where PLASA and countless smaller initiatives have tried and failed to marry pro audio to fixed installation and AV in an exhibition context, ISE has somehow made itself the centre of gravity that its title implies: integrating systems for realistic, creative and profitable solutions wherever sound and images meet away from the traditional bedrocks of cinema, broadcast and concert.

In conferencing, both Kramer’s VIA Collage and Microsoft’s Surface Hub raise the bar in multimedia collaboration. In digital signage, Toshiba’s Business Vision software shows that images can be controlled globally from a central location. In comms, Clear-Com’s FreeSpeak II dramatically reduces latency… all indicators of an expanding B