Exploring the new realities of audio visual at Integrated Systems Europe 2018
“Hey Siri, can you please open the door for my mother and dim the lights a bit? I’m at work, thank you.” It’s likely something from a science fiction film, but according to technology experts at the recent Integrated Systems Europe in Amsterdam, it’s also becoming a rapidly forming reality.
Article by: Moran Zelikovich
“Every home can be a smart home, it is just a matter of budget,” explains Ralf Vienken from Beckhoff Automation, who recently showcased their innovations at Integrated Systems Europe 2018 (ISE) in Amsterdam.
As the world’s largest AV systems integration show, ISE demonstrated emerging technologies across the sector.
“The future is going to combine sound control, light, temperature, cameras and any control system with your own computer and mobiles devices like Siri, Alexa or cloud-based [applications],” says Beckhoff.
Beckhoff Automation is not the only company that presents one-control platform for all automation tasks in a processor the size of a small old-fashion radio. Most of the advanced control systems presented at this year’s ISE showcases the combination of audio and visual systems with smart home and building technology. Some of these advancements are sprouting roots in secured control centres. For instance, the Draco Tera command and control system from ‘IHSE’—a high performance, modular system for bidirectional signal distribution of high definition video, audio, and data over Cat X—connects and switches users to remote CPUs and serves instantly with no delay in transmission. This system was also used in air control centres at Frankfurt Airport, and speed rail control rooms in France. Now, the industry is offering it to the field of smart homes and construction.
Exploring primary themes at ISE
The merge of technology with new realities was the focal point at this year’s ISE. This annual event brings together global AV integrators, influencers, and investors to take a glimpse at the latest cutting-edge technology, products, and solutions. This year, ISE gathered more than 75,000 visitors in Amsterdam, exploring topics and highlights throughout audio visual systems, video display and projections, and smart home technology.
The main attraction for audio and visual systems at this year’s event was the XR (extended reality) technology, also being referred to as ‘new realities’. According to Benjamin de Wit, Chairman of the XR Summit at ISE, “The XR is creating a huge transformation in the AV industry.”
XR technology includes other existing alternative reality systems like virtual reality, augmented reality and mixed reality. De Wit explains that XR is a vital technology for the future of audiovisual solutions and will become a key technology for the industry. He points out that location-based XR has become especially popular with cinemas, arcades, museums and the architecture industry. In the future, he predicts that the education and health care industries will follow suit.
Visitors to ISE were able to experience XR technology first-hand, immersing themselves in the building and designing of a house and visiting it through 3D virtual reality.
Additionally, visitors were given the opportunity to experience the world’s first interactive game platform—an augmented climbing wall. Attendees could climb a wall chasing virtual bats, and after the game finished, watch their own hologram in action.
Past this field, though, is the rapid advancements in the visual hardware sector.
The European consortium OPTintegral, which includes 9 different European companies, has developed a mould-based hybrid manufacturing technology for LED screens that not only reduces costs and time to-market by 40 per cent, but also halves the harmful emissions produced during the manufacturing process.
This allows it to maintain a low market price for buyers. Optintegral also presented a large-scale, high-resolution 2D screen with lighter and finer backlighting than the models currently on the market. It’s a flexible, large-format, super-thin RGB screen featuring high-density 3D capabilities and a new lense system that makes it possible to create a 3D effect without special glasses.
Other exhibitors also featured those from the entertainment industry, such as Invent Design—the company behind tailor-made creative LED lighting shows for well-known DJs. Additionally, the brand is catering to large music performances, high-scale events, and light festivals, based on 6000-Lumen LEDs controlled from one central device. At ISE, they launched the GOBO light canvas—a specially designed wall panel which makes use of the newest technologies in LED lighting and pixel control. Their technology is also aimed for high-end private clients.
Technology and nature
As part of technology developments, different brands are trying to stretch the borders of the screen as we know it.
For example, ISE placed emphasis on the utilisation of unique water screens to present video art. Others demonstrated 3D technology that casts objects in mid-air without using any kind of screen.
Another natural aspect, one of this year’s ISE innovation winners in audio, is an intelligent acoustic management service called Habitat Soundscaping by Plantronics. Using the natural sound of water with complementary visuals, the system’s algorithms continuously monitor distraction sensors and adjust speakers, seamlessly maintaining perfect, natural harmony within the space. The technology identifies when white and pink noises in the office are getting too distracting, and adjusts the nature-based sounds accordingly. The Habitat Soundscaping system includes software that connects and controls sensors, speakers, and visual displays. The software also automatically analyses its performance to ensure it’s running optimally day-in, day-out.
Find out more about what’s going on in the audio visual industry at this year’s Integrate expo, kicking off at ICC Sydney, Darling Harbour, on 22-24 August. See who’s already signed up to exhibit here.