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InfoComm 08 in Review

Aug 1, 2008 12:00 PM, By Trevor Boyer

Newsworthy AV products and trends at this year’s show.

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In an impressive InfoComm appearance, Bosch showcased its PL series professional vocal and instrument microphones. These mics — including condensers and dynamics — feature ultra-low handling noise, multistage pop filters, hardened-metal Memraflex grilles, and a non-reflective, textured satin finish.

Also unveiled at the show was a complete new range of Electro-Voice (EV) fixed-installation loudspeakers in the EV Innovation line. These incorporate the new SMX woofer family with symmetric motor and suspension design and the HD2B high-frequency compression driver with rim-center-diaphragm design and die-cast aluminum heat sink. The new products include the EVF series front-load product family, the EVH series of horn-load coaxial design that features EV's new rotatable HF waveguide with seven coverage patterns, and the EVA series of expanded vertical arrays. These EV products also offer external passive/biamp selection, a diagnostics port, and a 70.7V transformer kit-landing pad.

EV also showed its Iris-Net Intelligent Remote and Integrated Supervision Network for complete PA-system monitoring and control with the NetMax N8000 digital matrix processor and up to 250 Remote Power Amps. Featuring a very adaptable and customizable graphical user interface, the application allows the operator to see everything happening on a large sound system and to control it all from one location.

Also on hand was EV's TourX line of road-worthy loudspeaker systems with a patent-pending Backbone grille, SMX woofers, and steep-slope analog crossovers with elliptical filters providing slopes of up to 36dB per octave. The 12in., two-way ZX3 loudspeaker was there with its ND2 neodymium compression driver and DVX3121 12in. woofer, ready to be fitted with its CB-5 array kit or MB3 wall/ceiling-mount bracket and other attachments.

Samson makes a variety of audio products, from WAV recorders to simple zoned audio systems. New for Samson was the ZM125 — a 6-channel-input, five-zone system that uses one monoblock amp (125W/70V). There's a telephone output for music-on-hold. Designed for aerobics and other hands-free presenters, AirLine Synth is a tiny transmitter with an integrated mic. The idea is that for many applications, a corded lavalier is too cumbersome. AirLine Synth is a frequency-agile model that operates at 800MHz.

After the big introduction of the groundbreaking SpectraPulse high-end audioconferencing technology at last year's show, Audio-Technica (A-T) had a relatively quiet InfoComm. It showed the fruits of its rebranding efforts (“Experience More”), along with some new gear. The ES905CL is a rigid-pipe gooseneck with one microphone element. A-T also introduced the ESRSC remote-switch control box, which enables contractors to extend remote on/off and muting functions to mics that don't otherwise have control interfaces. ESRSC adds a contact closure, and the user supplies the switch.

If you're looking for the smallest of the small in body-pack transmitters, Shure's new UR1M is worth a look. The company says that it beta-tested the UR1M at the 2008 Academy Awards (on host Jon Stewart) and at this year's Miss America pageant. The tiny transmitter is set to ship in late summer. It's part of the Shure UHF-R wireless microphone system. The receiver can control several aspects of the UR1M via infrared — such as frequency, gain, and level.

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