Posts tagged “resolution

Chris Shen- Infra


I have a friend experimenting with low-rez video (of the tube variety) and I said I’d look into some ideas…little did I know it would lead me to Chris Shen’s fascinating work- Infra. A TV made from discarded remote controls. There’s so many great things about this piece that it’s hard to know where to start. Hacking, tinkering, re-purposing, and a smidge of nostalgia all rolled into one glorious low-rez display that has to be seen with infrared goggles. Love it! Personally, I use the Harmony 720 (actually three of them) and though I tried really hard- I could not find one in the photos. When I purchase a new monitor or TV, the remote is usually the first thing I toss- knowing full-well there are better alternatives out there. Kind of makes me think why the manufacturer bothers at all with a lame remote, but that’s a discussion for another day. The whole thing is wired to a Peggy 2, courtesy Evil Mad Scientist Labratories. Be sure to read the write up HERE.

From his press release:
In 1955, Eugene Polley (1915 – 2012) designed the first ever wireless remote control for the Zenith Radio Corporation. At the press of a button, the remote would magically flash an invisible light from across the room and turn your TV set on, off, or change channels, all without you budging from the couch. It was an invention that changed the nature of television.

To kick off 2013 at 18 Hewett Street, Protein is proud to present interactive artist Chris Shen’s original artwork INFRA, a largescale installation that marks the (more…)

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SOTA Creative 360-deg. Mapping for Subaru Australia


SOTA Creative drives game changing experience for Subaru Australia.

Following product supply challenges that resulted from the tragic Japanese earthquake and tsunami, Subaru Australia needed a game changing communication experience to re-motivate their Dealer Network and Launch two new models. As long term experiential agency for Subaru Australia, the team at SOTA conceived and produced a one-off experience incorporating a “Virtual Drive”, where all 240 people in the audience became passengers in a unique 360 degree cinematic creation. On over 125 metres of continuous screen, a Full High Definition projection system took our audience on a drive through some of Australia’s iconic landscape and environments.

SOTA Creative conceived and produced two major 360 degree cinematic experiences, one each for the reveals of the Impreza and the XV, plus continually changing 360 degree visual effects for environment design and speaker support for the duration of the evening. The images were created and edited to be delivered at Full High Definition (22,000 pixels wide and 1080 pixels high). The virtual drive experience was shot using a purpose built 9 camera rig which was mounted on a custom-fitted Film vehicle. Post production was done both in Los Angeles and Sydney and converted by SOTA to be projected through 12 Christie Projectors (HD-10k) and a Dataton Watchout Control system. Haycom provided the Christies and the staging/rigging.

all imagery courtesy/copyright SOTA Creative

After a worldwide search, SOTA Creative sourced a Los Angeles based camera system and rig capable of delivering 22,000 pixel width 360 degree images, developed a post production process to deliver the finished programs to a Watchout controlled system and then to 12 matched Christie projectors. Social Animal used the incredible SA360 rig to deliver the goods. (Make sure to check out their site for some cool interactive loops and extra footage- and some pretty amazing case studies).The continuous audience surround screen surface was a challenge in itself, needing to be floor to ceiling, while allowing “openings” for audience arrival, F&B service and the revealing of Vehicles and Entertainment. The LA team from Social Animal came to Australia for literally a 3 day shoot. IMG_0270We also used a still shoot of the interior of the car to produce the interior of the car and then this was added as the foreground of the video. We then had the challenge of doing rescaling up to 22,00 pixel width and had to crop it to our Aspect Ratio requirements and cut it up to suit the 12 Christie projectors (12 movies playing together using the ‘Watch out System”. And before all of this could happen we had to produce the foreground plate with the ‘interior of the car’. We produced this as a 22,000 pixels wide by 1080 high all played in full high definition. The end result was projection 106 metres around all the audience. Notice, also that the ‘rear view mirror’ had the same image as the ‘rear window’.

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Christie Simulation at I/ITSEC

The military gets all the good stuff. Check out Christie Digital’s highlight video from I/ITSEC:

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EIH Productions Goes Ultra HD

Everyone is Happy Productions, another freak about projection from down under, recently pulled off some great content on an ultra-HD scale. Everyone is Happy- well, of course they are- their video and graphics were projected onto three massive 15m x 5m screens with six edge blended Christie projectors. The gig was for Ozri 2011, the Asia-Pacific’s leading spatial industry conference held in Melbourne, and it drew it’s largest crowd ever. EIH was commissioned by Haycom AV to produce the 3240x 1080 content: (more…)

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Barco Releases Next-gen Image Pro II


It seems like anymore not a gig goes by where I wish I had an Image Pro… I can wish for a Image Pro II. The original Image Pro earned a reputation in the industry for being a bit cantankerous, but it’s one of those pieces of gear you’re glad you have when push comes to shove. It’s the original “anything in- anything out” box for super quality scaling/converting…not so much for switching- but it’ll do that too in a pinch. Barco is launching the new ImagePRO-II, a video scaler, scan converter, switcher, and transcoder in one at Integrated Systems Europe, January 31 to February 2, Amsterdam.

The company says the ImagePRO-II is the most versatile (more…)

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Chivas Mapping from Visual Vibes Group


In what looks like an after-party for a sponsored production, the Visual Vibes Group gives us this projection mapping from the inside of a theatre. There’s some great textural stuff, and who wouldn’t want their theatre filled with whiskey? (more…)

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Surtitles 101

La Traviata is here and the Indianapolis Opera is in full swing.  This one is in Italian and unless you’re fluent, the show’s gonna be kind of lacking something….something….what if…..AHA!  Translate it in a relatively unobtrusive way and it’s a whole new ballgame.

Surtitles, subtitles, whatever you want to call them- are translated or transcribed lyrics/dialogue projected above a stage or displayed on a screen, commonly used in opera or other musical performances. The word “surtitle” comes from the French language “sur”, meaning “over” or “on”, and the English language word “title”, formed in a similar way to the related subtitle. The word Surtitle is a trademark of the Canadian Opera Company. Surtitles are used either to translate the meaning of the lyrics into the audience’s language, or to transcribe lyrics that may be difficult to understand in the sung form. The two possible types of presentation of surtitles are as projected text, or as the electronic libretto system. Titles in the theatre have proven a commercial success in areas such as opera, and are finding increased use for allowing hearing impaired patrons to enjoy theatre productions more fully. Surtitles are used in live productions in the same way as subtitles are used in movie and television productions. The super-slick (and pricey) way to do it is to use something like Figaro Systems Simultext seat-back system. These are individual LCD screens in the seatbacks of the auditorium that display the titles for individual patrons. It’s in use at such prestigious venues as La Scala, and the Santa Fe Opera.

At our theatre it’s not nearly as glamorous, but it gets the job done. Like many theatres, we use readily available DLP projectors. In our case two Panasonic PT-D5600 DLP projectors, one for the actual (more…)

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Ex Machina Does The Ring

We featured a video a while back of the largest projection project ever (The Image Mill) that Robert LePage and his team at Ex Machina created. Now it looks as if they are at it again- this time on a smaller scale…if you consider Die Walkure a smaller scale that is. The New York Metropolitan Opera chose Ex Machina to go wild on this new production of the Wagner Classic and they didn’t disappoint. Lepage uses a 45-ton rotating, paneled set (essentially 24 triangular-shaped fiberglass-covered aluminum planks each 30 feet in length) that projection is shot on to (see photo). Dubbed simply “the Machine”, the planks move independently of one another and can rotate 360 degrees around the hydraulically-powered central axis (a pair of pneumonic brakes can engage or disengage the planks from the central axis), which is secured by two steel, 26-foot tall elevator towers. So it’s really huge. And heavy. I read a couple of reviews that spoke of it being pretty noisy- but come on….this size and scale of complexity is pushing the physical boundaries of stage, so all you critics – lighten up! The production uses seven Panasonic PT-D10k’s, two Christie 30k Roadies, and one 35k Roadie. Now that I could see as ‘loud’ although I’m (more…)

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CAT5 Revisited

Running a blog allows a lot of things, not the least of which is learning. This is in addition to being the editor, writer, and CTO. I learned I need to be a little less hasty in posting- the article on Video Over CAT5 was met with some criticism and I’d like to clarify a bit more….
Baluns are usually passive- that is, no power applied. Baseband video can be carried down UTP (or STP) and baluns can be used, although with limited distance.




Display signals (like the ones your computer puts out) are a bit different, in fact- a lot different. You’ll need active transmitters and receivers, or powered devices, like these:

Some of these will require a power source at BOTH ends, some can supply power from one end to the other. Keep in mind these are for NON-data signals- not standard network protocol. The UTP you string around your install is not to be used for data transmission or Ethernet or internet or anything that isn’t a display signal. As I said in the previous article- figure out if the cost savings is worth it. On larger installs, the cable cost and hassle are usually going to be better….on smaller custom installs with shorter distances UTP might not be the way to go. Good quality RGBHV or DVI or (ugh) HDMI cable might serve you better. There are certainly going to be more articles on this so stay tuned…..Rock on.

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Tools, Tips, and Tricks of the Trade- Vista Spyder

Vistasystems bills the Vista Spyder as “the world’s most versatile video processor”. The Spyder has gained notoriety because it was designed with a wide variety of users in mind, from the beginner to the seasoned pro. It is used heavily in broadcast studios as well as C&C centers. It is also used widely in live production, from corporate events to giant tours. There are basically 3 different versions- the Series 200, 300, and X20.  Here’s a detailed explanation.

There is also the URS, a Universal Routing Switcher, which allows anything in (Composite to 4k) and anything out (to any of 8 user configurable outputs). Here’s the info, as well as a great mouse-over explanation. This unit does exactly what it says- universally routes and switches, which means you can get rid of external scalers, transcoders, and scan-converters.

Looks like we’ll need 3 or 4 for the plush Projectionfreak headquarters….


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DLP explained

And on the heels of the last video from explaining LCD technology, we get this from our friends at Texas Instruments, the folks that hold the patent and are largely responsible for inventing and propagating the DLP chip. And for those of you who don’t like video (hard to believe there are any of you if you’re reading this) here’s a great printable article.


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Bill Explains the LCD

This one’s making it’s rounds in the Blogosphere, but it is highly accurate.  Essentially the same for projector technology, with the exception of more heat dissipation properties and PJ’s that use 3LCD technology.  At it’s basis though, you really get the physics involved.


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Red State and the Barco DP2K-20c


Just used the Barco DP2K-20c to screen Kevin Smith’s Red State and both the film and the projector were OUTSTANDING! The great film aside, the Barco is a true big gun. It outputs a whopping 18,500 lumens on 3 x .98″ DMDs and the picture quality was STELLAR. The native resolution is 2048×1080 and it’ll do cinema flat (1998×1080) on which the movie was shot. It’s a big pig weighing 225 lbs and it can put out some heat (note the stove-pipe heat vent). The content was served up by the Doremi DCP-2000 which is quite a machine. It’s a hard drive based cinema server that will do 2d and 3d playback at 2k and 4k resolutions. It’s a whole different post for all the details on this device, suffice to say it performed flawlessly.

Kevin hung around and did a Q&A session for like 2 1/2 hours so it was fantastic to hear the genesis of the film and some behind-the-art shop talk. Word is it’ll be out in October- GO SEE THIS FILM.

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For all the folks who don’t regularly visit Wikipedia, this chart offers a great quick and dirty guide to resolutions and aspect ratios.
Video Standards

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Why Projectionfreak?

The entertainment business is loaded, (a true video fan would say saturated, pun intended) with manufacturers sites, blogs, technical papers, and magazines that provide everything.  Here we want to provide one thing.  A single place for all the info, eye-candy, and news about large format projection, display technologies, and behind-the-gear experience in the entertainment biz. Want to find out about the latest greatest FOH audio console?  Look somewhere else.  Hoping to see some killer concert lighting reviews?  uh-uh.  Confused about native resolutions?  YES.  Wondering what the heck kind of projector they used for that ridiculous display you saw on the net? YES.  Need to know how LED/LCD/DLP displays and LED walls work? YES.

Projectionfreak is just starting out, but the buzz is building….look for us to only expand but while we do that- we’ll only provide ONE thing. A place for projection freaks!  Tools, Tips, and Tricks of the Trade, equipment features, designer and working technician interviews, information and how-tos on connectors, signal, resolutions, cabling, LCD/DLP displays, LED walls and hook-ups, and all the technology that makes it go.

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