Archive for February 6th, 2013

PACIFIC TELEVISION CENTER LAUNCHES 24/7 VIRTUAL POP IN WASHINGTON, D.C.

Enhanced HD Pathway Enables PacTV to Directly Manage Customer Content

WASHINGTON, D.C., FEBRUARY 06, 2013 – Pacific Television Center (PacTV), a Los Angeles-based independent global transmission and production company, is pleased to announce the completion of its new 24/7 virtual MCR in Washington D.C. An enhancement of PacTV’s existing network in Washington D.C., this hub includes a new dark fiber network within the city and increased long haul fiber capacity (OC12) for HD/SD access to PacTV’s entire portfolio of global resources.

“We can now offer our clients a fully managed end-to-end solution in Washington, DC,” says Nick Castaneda, V.P. Development, PacTV. “Our clients based in and around Washington, D.C. come to us for a variety of services. This gives us the capability to deliver all of their content in a more eloquent manner. And given the current demand for news and political coverage around the world, this move further solidifies our global footprint.”

The new hub utilizes the latest dark fiber technology. This enables clients including, C-SPAN, ITN and AuBC to have local uncompressed HD connectivity. This technology provides PacTV extensive flexibility in serving the D.C. market now and into the future.

In addition, PacTV has increased the long haul capacity to D.C. to an OC12 so it can now utilize JPEG 2000 compression for visually lossless delivery of HD/SD content. Customers can now receive reliable and fast point-to-point access to global news and media at an affordable price point.

“By expanding our connectivity to an OC12, we can provide more HD-capable streams via a point-to-point circuit that is instant-no stops, no delays-just immediate access to the newsworthy and timely content our clients are seeking,” adds Michael Barnes, engineer, PacTV New York. “In essence, we have built a virtual hub in D.C. that can be controlled by our facilities in New York, Los Angeles and London.”

Doritos ‘Crash the Super Bowl’ Winner Ben Callner Fields Tunewelders to Make a Scream with ‘Goat 4 Sale’

Doritos “Crash the Super Bowl” winner Ben Callner’s “Goat 4 Sale” commercial began with an idea about a ravenous Doritos-eating goat. Culminating the narrative he envisioned relied heavily on sound to sell the authenticity, dramatic tension and humor at play in his 30-second spot. He tapped longtime collaborators Tunewelder Music Group to make it work. Led by Music & Audio Post Supervisor Ben Holst, Tunewelders worked closely with Callner to hone the spot through sound design & editing, Foley, voice-over, mixing and mastering.

“Ben Holst and Tunewelders put the project first,” remarks Callner. “Other than being just really down-to-earth, excellent people, they go above and beyond to make sure that you’re not only happy, but that everyone (including them) is proud of the final product. In something like the Doritos Crash the Super Bowl contest, I wouldn’t think of going anywhere else. I know they’re going to make whatever I give them, in whatever condition, sound absolutely fantastic.”

“Ben has a way of theatrically pushing the envelope and making the absurd believable and not too cartoony,” adds Holst, who has collaborated with Callner on numerous film, commercial and interactive projects since the two first met on set during a film production in Atlanta in 2007. “A big part of that comes from his care for detail across the production, and with his deep musical background, that certainly extends to sound and creative where he’s very hands-on. Even inside all the tedious work of syncing goat crunches, which fly by you in a matter of milliseconds, there’s always an element of fun and general silliness working with him.”

Capturing sounds unique to Callner’s story required more than the SFX package and pre-cleared music that Doritos made available to all of its contestants. Greg Linton, location sound, provided a library of real goat crunches recorded on site. The tedious process of syncing the crunch sounds with the goat’s chewing gestures needed to demonstrate both believability and comedic timing.

For the comedic payoff when the goat screams from apparent Doritos withdrawal, the challenge was finding the best voice-over performance for the scream, and then realistically syncing it. The solution involved Callner’s childhood friend Keith Bahun and an iPhone.

“Goats actually have a distinct scream, so mimicking it with the human mouth was tough to cheat,” Holst recalls. “We explored it all the way to the final delivery because it was so crucial to the punchline. A bunch of us had recorded some takes, but Ben still wasn’t sold. Keith was known for this great scream, but he was all the way in Savannah, GA. I said, ‘iPhones make great recordings, just have him do a lot of takes and make sure he stands far enough away from the phone so it’s similar in distance to the goat in the shot.’ We managed to pull it off last-minute and it came out perfect.”

Holst and Callner went beyond the obvious visual cues using Doritos’ trademark mixed bag of crunch samples. For example, to intensify the goat owner’s growing insanity as his pet incessantly snacks into the wee-hours, their sound design incorporated building several layers of different crunch sounds to embellish the moment.

For the final scene depicting the goat ominously hoofing it towards the owner in hiding, the team also enlisted foley work using the same prop hooves shot in the scene.

Ben Holst (Left) and Jeremy Gilbertson (Right), Tunewelders



For Tunewelders, the project offered the opportunity to showcase what they have quietly been doing since launching four years ago: developing long-term relationships with national brands, production companies and agencies, and translating their ideas through sound and music.

“We love working with Ben,” concludes Tunewelders Partner Jeremy Gilbertson. “When he has an idea, we generally don’t say no because we believe in his talent and the longevity of his career. I’m sure everyone in our community who contributed their support and resources share the same belief, and we’re honored to be among all the exceptional local talent who rallied behind him to help make the spot such a huge success. Great things are happening here in the music, film and entertainment sectors, so we’re proud to represent Georgia and the City of Atlanta on the national stage.”

Ben Callner, Director / Co-Writer / Editor
Steve Colby, Executive Producer / Co-Writer / Goat Wrangler
Ruth Brown, Executive Producer
Joe Przedwiecki, Associate Producer / Camera Assistant / Media Manager Ashley Wilson, Production Coordinator
Pete Wages, Director of Photography
Joe Clayton, Gaffer
Alice Nisbet, Art Director
Greg Linton, Sound Mixer
West Chambliss, Swing
Ethan Moffitt, Grip
Chris Callner, Script Supervisor
Scott Callner, Craft Service
Andrew Hunt, Production Assistant
Brian Kull, Production Assistant
Mike Massey, Production Assistant
Roger & Helyn Kesler, Homeowners of Exterior Location
Ben Callner, Editor
Molly Baroco, Executive Producer, Beast Soraia Callison, Producer, CO3
Jeremy Moore, Producer, Method
Billy Gabor, Sr. Colorist, CO3
Ben Holst, Post Sound Mix, Tunewelders
Deron Heffmeyer, Sr Flame Artist, Method
Mike Wardner, Sr Flame Artist, Method
Heather Keister, Flame Assistant, Method
Mark Ashworth, “Mark”
Moose the Goat, “Goat”
Keith Bahun, Goat Scream VO Joe Przedwiecki, “Younger Man” Steve Colby, Puppeteer
Ben Callner, Puppeteer

About Tunewelders
Founded in 2009 by Ben Holst and Jeremy Gilbertson, Tunewelder Music Group is a music production company based in Atlanta, GA. We specialize in custom music and licensing for advertising, film, television and new media outlets. It is our passion to translate your ideas into music. Top brand and network clients include ESPN, Comedy Central, ABC, MTV2, The Atlanta Braves, and Verizon Wireless, while working with production and advertising partners Blue Sky, Collective, Pogo Pictures, Melt, and Moxie Interactive, among many
others. www.tunewelders.com

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NEW ART MIAMI LAUNCHES ITS REMOTE COLOR GRADING SERVICE

MIAMI, FL: New Art Miami has launched a pioneering remote color grading service, taking its one-stop seamless approach to editorial, VFX, 3D animation, color grading, finishing and audio postproduction to the next level. The innovative service provides clients with virtual access to real-time sessions with the company’s skilled color grade team, while eliminating the expense and time of travelling to the Miami-based facility.

 

New Art bringing clients and their colorist together in ‘live,’ real time sessions that enable clients to watch, interact, and participate in the creative process from their computers, with matched color parameter, or on tablets, or smart phone. Sessions are accessed via Internet from multiple locations using secure password logins.

 

Demetrio Bilbatua, President/CEO, New Art Miami

“Our remote color grading service provides a project that doesn’t have room in its budget for travel expenses, with the opportunity to work with our multi-talented colorists, Oscar Martinez and Patrick Desfayes – without every leaving their office,” says Demetrio Bilbatua, New Art’s President/CEO. “It also provides local clients with the convenience of accessing the same high-caliber service, technology and talent that we offer in-house, without having to get in their cars or block travel time into their schedules.”

 

The remote color grading process begins after production, with the client sending files and their EDL to New Art Miami. Files are then ingested to the facility’s non-linear color correction system, and their color grader performs a monitor calibration of the client’s viewing reference station. New Art’s team establishes a voice connection via Skype or phone, and then begins a real-time nonlinear color grading session.

 

Remote color grading delivers the same quality as in-house session – and goes through the same process – matching the color temperature of footage from multiple camera, balancing out levels from scene to scene, using the nuisances of the craft to create or enhance the desired mood of each scene, getting rid of noise, correcting soft areas and achieving precise control of color and contrast by utilizing window isolation. The final product is equal to the quality that clients are accustomed to when leaving an in-house session.

 

After the session is completed, New Art’s colorist posts selected files to an FTP for download and use. They retain a copy to allow further correction or alternate versions to be created, or to follow through, providing editorial, finishing and/or audio services. (The company is currently fine-tuning a Remote Editorial Services, which it plans to launch later this year.)

 

“Clients are amazed at the level of convenience and flexibility our remote capabilities bring to the color grading phases of their projects, and how seamlessly it integrates into their work day,” says Bilbatua. “And, by eliminating the cost and time spent traveling, working remotely allows project that never had the budget to come to New Art for color grading to step up the production value of their content.”

 

“Our remote color grading service delivers the quality and service that the industry has come to expect from New Art Miami, while eliminating the substantial out-of-pocket costs and time normally associated with traveling to Miami,” adds Bilbatua. “It was designed to anticipate the every-changing needs of today’s clients – and refine the role of a seamless workflow for commercial, corporate, music video and web-based video content.”

 

ABOUT NEW ART MIAMI:
New Art Miami is a creative service provider offering Editorial, VFX, 3D animation, color grading, finishing and audio for spots, broadcast content, music video and all platforms of visual media. Our team is committed to providing dynamic, flexible and innovative solutions that cross platforms and exceed expectations. Technical specs and formats supported by New Art’s Remote Color Grading system can be downloaded from www.newartmiami.com/remote-color-correction, or contacted at 305.857.0350 for additional information on the services.

Southpaw Technology Launches Open Source TACTIC TEAM for Mac

Mac version of Southpaw’s production asset management to help content creators working in iOS environments organize files, projects and workflows, free of charge

Toronto, Canada – Feb 6, 2012 – Southpaw Technology, a leading developer of production asset management (PAM) technology for content creators, announced today that it has created an open source version of its production asset management system TACTIC TEAM, for Mac users. As of today, individuals and small teams working on Macs and producing 2D/3D files, visual effects, video and more can download TACTIC TEAM for free and start using it instantly to manage files, tasks, projects and workflows.

Every feature available on the most recent Windows® version of TACTIC TEAM (v3.9) is now also supported on iOS. Since TACTIC TEAM is open source, individuals and teams can download the software and start using it for free.

“Once we launched our open source system, we began receiving more and more requests for iOS support from individual and small teams,” said Gary Mundell, CEO of Southpaw Technology. “We’ve always said we would provide that Mac version when we could do so without sacrificing any functionality or performance. Today, I’m happy to say we’ve achieved that goal. And what’s better, with our new open source model, we can provide TACTIC TEAM to Mac users for free.”

Available to companies under the Eclipse Public License, TACTIC is a highly flexible web-based production asset management system that cures the headache of complex digital content creation. By combining digital asset management with project and workflow management, TACTIC keeps files secure, teams on track and projects on schedule as more and more digital content is created. TACTIC is currently being used by content creation teams of all types and sizes, including teams, studios and entire organizations in feature film production, visual effects, game development, advertising, marketing, and creative services across a number of industries.

To find out more about TACTIC, visit www.southpawtech.com/solutions.

About Southpaw Technology Inc.
Southpaw Technology provides production asset management solutions to the media & entertainment and enterprise markets. Available via commercial or open source licensing as a web-based solution for Mac OSX, Windows and Linux, TACTIC combines all the asset and production management functionality teams, departments and companies need to keep digital productions on track and on budget, including asset management, project management, workflow management and communication tools. Customers include Procter and Gamble, Lockheed Martin, Saatchi and Saatchi LA, Nissan North America, Astral Media, Legend3D, GENER8, 2G Digital, Inhance Digital, ToonBox Entertainment, and many more digital content creators. For more information, please visit www.southpawtech.com.
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© 2013. Southpaw Technology Inc. All trademarks contained herein are the property of their respective owners.

HUSH Welcomes Multi-Talented Artist Salyer into the Fold

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HUSH is pleased to announce the addition of art director and design and concept development artist Andre Salyer to its ranks. Salyer, whose multidisciplinary approach cuts across every component of experimental, interactive, and moving-image platforms, will guide HUSH’s team of designers, developers, and architects on behalf of clients.

“Looking over Andre’s shoulder and watching him work is an incredible experience,” explained HUSH Creative Partner David Schwarz. “His design toolkit is broader than most, allowing him to move effortlessly between 3D, 2D, interface, graphic design, typography, motion, film, and photography. In that way, Andre fits the creative mold we’ve built here at HUSH, where we seek out people with broad creativity and boundless skillsets.”

Prior to joining the crew full-time, Salyer freelanced at HUSH eventually becoming a critical component of the studio’s lauded slate of Nike work in 2012, including art direction on the Camp Victory experience and work on campaigns for Nike’s Flywire, Nike+, and FuelBand projects. He was also a core contributor to an interactive kiosk deployed to Abu Dhabi on behalf of one of the studio’s large energy clients, utilizing acrylic blocks as physical interactive inputs, sonic interface design, and dynamic data display.

Salyer has also spent time freelancing and working with well-known motion design studios Stardust, Brand New School, Blind, Psyop, Buck, Superfad, Various Studios, 1st Ave Machine, and Hornet, turning out advertising work for Microsoft, O2, Chase, HTC, Estée Lauder, Exxon, Chevy Sonic, and Jack Daniels, as well as award-winning music videos for Yeasayer and Gnarls Barkley.

Currently, Salyer is already at work on several HUSH projects, including an interactive retail environment experience, as well as interactive exhibition spaces, visual identity work, and a live data sculpture for a world leaders summit.

The move follows the recent hire of Lead Technical Producer Eric Alba, and Animator/Designer James Zanoni.

About HUSH:

HUSH is a design agency. We design and produce digital content & experiences that are unique in creating brand recognition for our clients.
Thinkers. Makers.

Selected Brand Collaborations:
Nike, Estee Lauder, Sony Ericsson, Nokia, Microsoft Hyundai, Acura, Kiehl’s, MARSH, Random House, Stylecaster, Hearst, Showtime, Esquire, Under Armour, ExxonMobil, MTV, Syfy, Discovery, HBO, PBS, Cartoon Network, Nickelodeon, Starz, among others.

Selected Agency Collaborations:
Ogilvy, McGarryBowen, McCann Worldgroup, Jack Morton Worldwide, Momentum Worldwide, Mindshare Entertainment, George P. Johnson, Grey, BBH, SapientNitro, Big Spaceship, Odopod, Hill Holliday, among others.

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jumP Changes Lanes with Lexus and Team One

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Love, desire, and attitude dominate “Change Lanes,” the tightly cut new Lexus spot edited by jumP’s Richard Cooperman.

Shot by Pretty Bird’s Melina Matsoukas in cooperation with agency Team One, the spot boasts sheen, polish, primp, and fashion—all juxtaposed against the Lexus IS performing furiously on a darkened highway. These scenes are deftly intermixed with various symbolism and found-footage, creating an affecting montage of beauty, mystery, elegance, and power. The high-contrast black-and-white style reinforces the bold design statement of the all-new Lexus IS, further highlighted by the expert editorial eye of Cooperman, making the spot effortlessly accelerate from beginning to black.

Credits:

Client: Lexus
Spot Title: “Change Lanes”
Air Date: January 2013

Agency: Team One
Creative Director: Craig Crawford
Art Director: Ryan DiDonato
Copywriter: Andrew Smart
Producer: Reilly Park

Production: Pretty Bird
Director: Melina Matsoukas
Executive Producer: Ali Brown
Producer: Grant Jue

Editorial: jumP
Editor: Richard Cooperman
Assistant Editor: Chad Hoerner
EP: Betsy Beale
Producer: Gavin Carroll

Type Designer: Paul McMenamin

Color Grading: Company Three
Colorist: Dave Hussey

Mixer: Bob Gremore/Juice
Music: Kill Memory Crash – Shots

VFX: a52

about jumP:

Bicoastal jumP is an award-winning creative editorial boutique focusing on commercials, features, short films, music videos, and emerging media content. The firm works with a wide-range of top-tier brands, directors, and agencies continually delivering powerful and efficient results for each of its clients. The company roster includes Partner/Editors: Luis Moreno and Michael Saia, Editors: Lin Polito, Troy Mercury, Richard Mettler, Patrick Griffin, David Trachtenberg, Richard Cooperman, Wendy Rosen, Jonathan Edwards, EPs Betsy Beale and Alexandra Leal, and Partner/Managing Director Dee Tagert.

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Webster City High School Launches Live Sports Coverage with Broadcast Pix Video Control Center

Billerica, Massachusetts – Broadcast Pix™ today announced Webster City High School in Webster City, Iowa, is using a Granite™ 1000 Video Control Center™ to produce live coverage of its varsity athletics from its new competition gymnasium. The school covered all six of its home girls volleyball matches in late 2012, and is currently shooting home boys and girls basketball and wrestling contests.

Live sports coverage is a new challenge for student video production at the school, which has been focused primarily on a weekly newscast. Now in its 14th year, WCTV is a 10-15 minute newscast produced by students that is distributed on an internal cable system and a local community access channel, as well as iTunes and other Internet sites.

When it came time to replace the program’s GlobeCaster switcher and other core SD production equipment, Webster City decided to make the transition to full HD production. Then, according to Mark Murphy, director of technology, Webster City Community Schools, officials decided to expand the video production program by integrating video cameras into the new gym, providing students with the opportunity to produce live sports coverage.

The first phase of the process included the purchase of the Granite system, three Canon HD studio cameras, and other equipment for the 2010 school year, which was purchased from and integrated by Alpha Video in Edina, Minn. The second phase added cameras to the gym and connected the control room to the new facility via fiber in time for the 2012 volleyball season. Murphy said the system will also be used to produce commencement, concert, and special event coverage as well.

Anchored by the Granite, the control room is about 1,100 feet away from the gym, located next to the school’s 400-square-foot studio. The gym is equipped with three ceiling-mounted Panasonic HD cameras and four wall-mounted cameras. All cameras are controlled robotically by students in the control room. The permanently installed cameras and fiber infrastructure that connects to gym to the control room saves hours of setup and strike time for every event, Murphy noted.

Students really like the Granite system, particularly the PixButtons, which include built-in displays to show the device icon and file name of a clip or graphic. “It’s very easy for them to know what source they’re on and where they’re going,” Murphy explained. “It really makes it easy for them to operate.”

Webster City uses a number of the built-in Fluent™ workflow tools, and recently began using Fluent Macros for its wrestling coverage. During some tournaments, there is action on three mats simultaneously. With a camera covering each mat, a macro creates a split screen to provide footage from each match.

Fluent Rapid CG™ 2, an option for Granite and Mica™ Video Control Centers that supports Daktronics scoreboards, automatically integrates databases and custom actions like scorekeeping into templates to streamline the creation of data-intensive graphics. Webster City uses Fluent Rapid CG 2 with a Daktronics All Sport CG to provide real-time score data during its live coverage. “It’s working great for us,” said Murphy. “The data feed can update the same data element on multiple screens. We really like that option.”

With live coverage of several sporting events and dozens of newscasts already completed, Murphy is very pleased with the Granite system. “It’s really helped our production workflow become smoother,” he said. “Technically, the quality is better – and the convenience of an all-in-one package is really a great thing.”

About Broadcast Pix The leader in live video production systems with end-to-end integration, Broadcast Pix was founded in 2002 and has customers in more than 110 countries. Its Video Control Centers™ combine an integrated switcher, clip server, CG, and external control software with patented control panels, unique touch-screens, and exceptional displays. Systems range from compact systems controlled by touch-screen or voice automation to large sophisticated control panels. Customers include leading broadcast, streaming, sports, corporate, education, religious, and government studios. Learn more at www.broadcastpix.com.

Broadcast Pix, Fluent, Fluent Rapid CG, Granite, Mica, and Video Control Centers are trademarks of Broadcast Pix, Inc. Patented. Made in USA.

Simian Provides Creative Companies with a Better Way to Make Sales, Produce Work and Stay Organized

Laguna Niguel,CA — Over the past several years, Simian has revolutionized the way creative companies run their businesses by blazing a trail of cutting-edge innovation that has redefined industry standards. Its robust media management platform is currently employed by scores of production companies, advertising agencies, music houses and visual effect providers, amongst others. Simian’s single portal solution for multi-media management, cataloging, distribution and presentations ranging from sales reels to pitch decks and business presentations plus website management, includes cutting edge features such as an analytics package previously available only to Fortune 500 companies. In short, the Simian platform is helping companies work smarter in ways that would have been unimaginable just a few years ago.

Simian introduced its platform in 2008 as a way to help creative companies manage and present their growing libraries of video and other media files. Its creators combined their expertise in software development, web design, branding, graphic design and content management, with in-depth research into the business practices and needs of potential users.

“We spent a lot of time meeting and talking with production companies about the features they needed most,” recalls Simian co-founder Jay Brooks. “And we continue to listen to our clients. We actively seek their feedback and also try to understand what they need before they know they need it and extrapolate on that.”Atton adds that Simian is planning to take this further through a new feature that will allow users to identify which scenes in a given video are garnering the most interest. “It’s pretty clear that one scene is of interest verses another if they’ve watched it several times.”

One of the early and most notable innovations of the Simian platform was a radically new approach to the way companies build, manage and distribute sales reels. Previously, if a production company was bidding on an advertising project, each director’s reel would need to be sent individually, which meant having to sift through numerous emails. Simian streamlined the process by enabling multiple reels to be packaged together and sent in a single, branded presentation.

“Say you’re bidding on a Kellogg’s commercial and you have three directors whom you feel are qualified,” explains Simian co-founder Brian Atton. “Simian allows you to package all three reels into a single, branded presentation so that the agency producer can jump seamlessly from one reel to the next. This streamlined approach really helps speed the sales process.”

Even more impressive is Simian’s Reel Analytics in Real Time feature, which allows users to track the status of sales reels and other media. Users can tell if and when a particular recipient has opened an email, if it was forwarded it to colleagues, which spots the recipient(s) viewed, how much was viewed and how many times.

This allows companies to fine-tune their sales pitch. “If the client can pinpoint at a glance which spots the recipient is interested in, they know exactly how to follow up,” he says. Atton adds that Simian is planning to take this further through a new feature that will allow users to identify which scenes in a given video are garnering the most interest. “It’s pretty clear that one scene is of interest verses another if they’ve watched it several times.”

In 2010, in another industry first, Simian developed a feature that allows users to quickly create custom-branded microsites. Microsites can be used for everything from sales presentations to project management. Virtually any type of content can be added to a site from show reels, casting videos and review media to contact sheets and storyboards, all with sophisticated commenting, approval, permission and password features.

Simian includes a variety of templates that can be customized with the user’s branding. “Some clients use the sites as a pitch deck, others as a capabilities presentation,” notes Brooks. “Either way, they make an awesome impression.”

The true power of the Simian platform is in the way it integrates a broad range of functions through a single interface. The same portal that allows users to build sales reels, also allows them to manage website content. Companies can change or add new video content to their site in just a few keystrokes.

“On top of all of this we even included a built-in content management system,” Atton explains. “You can use it to update your blog or your website. You can add a director to the website and attach a reel. It’s really a one-stop tool.”

Ever evolving, Simian has just released its latest update that includes slicker presentation template options plus a state-of-the-art video player that provides seamless compatibility with various web browsers as well as with the mobile devices and tablets. A future version will include cloud-based media management tools that will make media assets even more accessible and easier to manage.

With creative companies facing tighter budgets, stricter deadlines and stiffer competition, any tool that helps them increase profitability by working smarter and more efficiently is going to receive a warm welcome. And that, says Brooks, is what Simian does. “We are the only company that offers this comprehensive suite of products,” he says. “Companies were looking for a better solution than what was already out there so, that’s what we delivered.”

About Simian:
Simian™ takes the business of managing digital media to the next level with an innovative workflow and ideation platform designed by industry leaders for industry leaders. Simian’s streamlined, yet highly flexible platform has set the industry standard for online media sharing and workflow solutions for creative companies.
For more information: www.gosimian.com

TourTraXX Selected by Oceaneering for New Trackless Ride Vehicle

Oceaneering International Inc., Entertainment Systems Division in Orlando is launching their RevOlution(tm) trackless ride vehicle featuring one of Alcorn McBride’s newest products, TourTraXX, a compact multi-channel audio player with high-quality MP3 playback and built-in GPS functionality.

“It’s a Tru-Trackless(tm) ride vehicle capable of motion in any direction at any time,” says Bill Bunting, manager of business development at Oceaneering. “The system has a three-axis motion base, can follow multiple ride paths, and transports eight people.”

A division of the global oilfield provider, Oceaneering is building Alcorn McBride’s TourTraXX into the trackless ride to distribute audio to the vehicle. “We wanted to provide an onboard audio experience that will match the ride,” says project coordinator Matt Kent. “We picked TourTraXX to give us the most flexibility, and it offers creative capabilities for 5.1 sound.”

TourTraXX plays up to 16 audio tracks in a small rugged form factor. It stores clips in MP3 format on CompactFlash for a reliable and maintenance-free solution to playback needs on the go. It’s lightweight (4 lbs) and sized to fit almost anywhere; with no moving parts it’s a great choice for high-vibration environments.

Kent gives kudos to the ability of TourTraXX to deploy audio recorded on flash drives. “It’s very easy to change out, very easy to record – there are no moving parts. Easy maintainability is the hallmark of Oceaneering products, so keeping our system as maintenance-free as possible is a key consideration for us.”

Oceaneering plans to sell its trackless ride vehicle to theme parks around the world. Its first application will be at SeaWorld’s newest attraction, “Antarctica: Empire of the Penguin,” which opens late spring.

TourTraXX is uniquely designed for a wide variety of mobile applications. With it’s built-in GPS functions it can also play audio files from latitude and longitude triggered points making it ideal for pre-recorded bus and boat tours, trolley’s, trams and a host of other mobile appliations. Spot-logging capabilities add a revenue generating opportunity, logging and time stamping advertising spots along the routes. All audio files are stored on CompactFlash cards for ultra-high reliability. TourTraXX fits into Alcorn McBride’s line of mobile audio and video players.

About Alcorn McBride:
Founded in 1986, Alcorn McBride is the leading manufacturer of show control, audio and video equipment for the themed entertainment industry, and a rapidly growing provider of audio and video systems for retail environments and transportation applications. Staffed by some of the industry’s best engineers and backed by outstanding customer support, the company has demonstrated great agility in bringing new designs to market. A hallmark of Alcorn McBride products is their durable, zero maintenance design. The company’s products provide consistent, reliable operation for audio and video playback applications worldwide. For more information, visit www.alcorn.com.

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