Events

What are In-Ear monitors and how can they be used on corporate events?

Each week we aim to demystify the world of audio visual equipment and event services speak. In this week’s Techie Tuesday we take a look at the key event communication tool ‘In Ears’. You have most likely seen performers on stage using them to hear their instruments or TV presenters listening for cues from backstage directors. They are also used in corporate events as an effective on stage tool to help enhance the delivery for on stage talent, giving them the confidence to deliver a great performance. Audio Visual Discipline: Audio Audio Visual Event Category: AV Equipment AV Jargon: In Ear’s, Ear Piece What are ‘In Ears’
In-ear Monitors are a small and discrete headphone set, that allows onstage talent to isolate ambient noise and listen directly to a personal audio mix. The headphones are connected to a small belt pack receiver, providing the talent with freedom to move without cables. The audio signal is broadcast from an transmitter, positioned either at the operators table or side of stage. Unlike a talkback/comms system which allows for two way communications between event crew, in-ear monitors allow for a split of any audio signal(s) required to be heard by the onstage talent, enabling them to action cue or hear clearly. Source: Shure | PSM900
What events are ‘In Ears’ used on?
Events such as award ceremonies or television broadcasts where there is a master of ceremonies or an on camera presenter, use in-ears to discreetly relay critical event cues such as timing information, when to throw to a video, and when to intro a new topic. It takes a very experienced and agile presenter to be able to talk to a live audience whilst also listening to event cues from directors. Events such as live musical performances, where there is a need for musicians to hear their instruments or vocals, use in-ears to deliver a mix of instruments and vocals allowing the musicians to keep in time, and on pitch. The use of in-ears for musical performances keeps the volume level down on stage, and gives the performer a consistent sound reference anywhere they move. What is needed for In Ear Monitors to work as part of you overall Audio Visual events solution?
A few specific items are required for in ear monitors to work effectively: Transmitter: the personal audio signal needs to be broadcast so as to be picked up by the belt pack receiver. Receiver: the broadcast audio signal needs to be received so as the talent Receiver: the broadcast audio signal needs to be received so as the talent can listen to the personal audio signal. Mixing Desk: a mixing desk is required to split the signal(s) and mix the signals being sent to the in-ear monitors. Audio Tech: a trusted audio tech is required to ensure that the talent receives a good mix and does not hear any unexpected sounds or cues Up next week…
Next week we focus on IMAG. In the meantime if you have any AV terms or words you would like our AV experts to tackle leave a comment on the blog post below or join in the conversation on Twitter @stgconnections #TechieTuesday. Written by Andrew Thorne, ANZPAC Trainer & Assessor, Staging Connections. Andrew Thorne is ANZPAC Trainer & Assessor and drives our training programs at Staging Connections, including our Certificate III in Live Production and Services Program for our new trainees. Related Blogs Techie Tuesday: Talk Back Systems
Optimise your event communication with design and production
Techie Tuesday: What is a Graphic Equaliser and why do I need one? … Read More

Techie Tuesday: Choosing the correct aspect ratio, 4:3 or 16:9?

Each week in our Techie Tuesday blog series we will aim to demystify the world of AV equipment and event services lingo and reveal exactly what those techs are talking about. Up today, we clear up the mystery of screen aspect ratios. If you have ever seen a distorted presentation or one where the content doesn't quite fit the screen chances are there is probably a problem with the aspect ratio. Each week in our Techie Tuesday blog series we will aim to demystify the world of AV equipment and event services lingo and reveal exactly what those techs are talking about. Up today, we clear up the mystery of screen aspect ratios. If you have ever seen a distorted presentation or one where the content doesn't quite fit the screen chances are there is probably a problem with the aspect ratio. AV Discipline: Vision AV Category: AV Theory AV Jargon: 4:3, 16:9, Width, Height, Wide Screen Description: The aspect ratio of a screen describes the “fixed” relationship between the width and the height. It is always written in a ratio format with the width listed first and the height listed second. In today’s event market you can find a vast array of presentation products, so finding out the aspect ratio of the screen should be one of the first technical questions asked. By authoring a presentation to match the aspect ratio of the screen, this will ensure the entire screen is filled with content. Presentation software such as PowerPoint and Keynote provide adjustable page setups to cater for different aspect ratios. AV terminology such as “letter box” or “pillar box” describes an image that does not fill the screen due to a miss-match of aspect ratios, this can be distracting for the audience. While projectors and monitors can stretch and squash an image to fill the screen, this will lead to image distortion, dramatically impacting the look of the presentation. This can be a trigger for the “Logo/Brand Police” to suddenly appear and request the distorted image to be fixed. For decades the standard aspect ratio was known as “4:3” as it widely adopted by the broadcast and computer industries. Since the recent introduction of High Definition video, the wider 16:9 aspect ratio has emerged as the new standard. With rapid advances in technology, manufactures are building products such as laptops, tablets, and mobile phones with a wide range of aspect ratios including 16:9, 8:5, 4:3, 5:3, 3:2, and 5:4 so knowing the correct aspect ratio of the screen is more important than ever. Image Source: Staging Connections | Learning and Development For any upcoming event that requires a screen, be sure to enquire into the aspect ratio and pass this information onto your presenters, content authors, and multimedia designers to ensure compatibility and the perfect presentation every time. Next week we shine a light on the 'Ballyhoo' and discuss when and where you would use them on your events. In the meantime if you have any suggestions or specific words you would like our AV experts to demystify for you please send your suggestions through to info@stagingconnections.com Written by Andrew Thorne, ANZPAC Trainer & Assessor, Staging Connections. Andrew Thorne is ANZPAC Trainer & Assessor and drives our training programs at Staging Connections, including our Certificate III in Live Production and Services Program for our new trainees. ... Read More

Techie Tuesday: What is a Talk Back System and how is it used in events

Each week we aim to demystify the world of AV equipment and event services and reveal exactly what those techs are talking about. In this weeks #TechieTuesday we look at the Talk Back system, or 'comms' as they are more commonly know and find why it is essential to the smooth running of an event. Each week we aim to demystify the world of AV equipment and event services lingo and reveal exactly what those techs are talking about. In this weeks #TechieTuesday we look at Talk Back system and find out why it is essential to the smooth running of an event. AV Discipline: Show Operation AV Category: AV Equipment AV Jargon: InterCom, Comms, Head Set Description: A Talk Back system is a communication network that is used by Show Operators to share vital aspects of an event, ensuring all actions are performed in unison. With Show Operators positioned throughout a function space, you will find them wearing a headset allowing them to listen to the show call and contribute to the flow of information. Go video #3! Stage lights up! Microphone #2 up! These are all examples of the talk back communication. The system comprises of any number of headsets and belt packs, which are allocated to each Show Operator including but not limited to camera, sound and lighting operators. At the heart of the system is the base station, which is typically located at the Control Desk for a central point of access. The Talk Back system is capable of distributing multiple channels which allows for isolated communications. By allocating different channels, this helps to keep the information flow focused and relevant for the Show Operators. For example the audio operator does not need to hear the call for the Camera Operator to pull focus and change their shot. Source: Clear-Com | Tempest 2400 Next week we look at aspect ratios for projection screens. If you have any words, terms or lingo you would like our AV experts to demystify for you please send your suggestions through to info@stagingconnections.com Written by Andrew Thorne, ANZPAC Trainer & Assessor, Staging Connections. Andrew Thorne is ANZPAC Trainer & Assessor and drives our training programs at Staging Connections, including our Certificate III in Live Production and Services Program for our new trainees. ... Read More

Techie Tuesday: What is a Graphic Equaliser

Each week we aim to demystify the world of AV equipment and event services and reveal exactly what those techs are talking about. In this weeks #TechieTuesday we look at the Graphic Equaliser and find out why it's so important to your event. Each week we aim to demystify the world of AV equipment and event services lingo and reveal exactly what those techs are talking about. In this weeks #TechieTuesday we look at the Graphic Equaliser and find out why it's so important to your event. AV Discipline: Audio, Sound AV Category: AV Equipment AV Jargon: EQ, GEQ, Equaliser, or Graphic Description: The Graphic Equaliser is a signal processing device that is primarily used to “equalise” or “tune” the acoustic response of an audio system. If you have any number of microphones on your event, chances are there will be a graphic equaliser processing the signal to ensure it sounds clean and balanced. It is most commonly positioned at the AV Technician’s control desk for ease of access and connectivity with other audio equipment. The Graphic Equaliser typically features 31 filters that are able to cut or boost selected frequencies. The filters are adjusted by the AV technician according to the acoustic response of the event space. Maybe you have heard “Test test 1-2” coming over the audio system, that’s the AV Technician listening to the effect of the graphic equaliser on their voice. Too much of one frequency can sound harsh and cause irritating feedback. Too little of one frequency can sound hollow and cause intelligibility issues! It requires a good ear to get it sounding right. Whilst graphic equalisers are rarely requested, all good AV technicians will ensure one is specified, due to the critical role they play in sound reinforcement. Next time you hire an audio system for your event, ask the AV Technician if a Graphic Equaliser is being used! Source: Klark Technik | DN360 In next weeks Techie Tuesday blog we discuss Talk Back systems and the integral role they play in seamless event delivery. In the meantime if you have any words, terms or lingo you would like our AV experts to demystify for you please send your suggestions through to info@stagingconnections.com Written by Andrew Thorne, ANZPAC Trainer & Assessor, Staging Connections. Andrew Thorne is ANZPAC Trainer & Assessor and drives our training programs at Staging Connections, including our Certificate III in Live Production and Services Program for our new trainees. ... Read More

What part Sub Speakers play in your Audio Visual Solution

Each week we aim to demystify the world of AV equipment and event services lingo and reveal exactly what those techs are talking about. In this weeks #TechieTuesday we look at Sub Speakers, or 'Subs' as they are more commonly known and find out what part they play in your audio visual solution. . Each week we aim to demystify the world of AV equipment and event services lingo and reveal exactly what those techs are talking about. In this weeks #TechieTuesday we look at Sub Speakers, or 'Subs' as they are more commonly known and find out what part they play in your audio visual solution. AV Discipline: Audio AV Category: AV Equipment AV Jargon: Subs, Doof Doof, Bottom Whackers, Woofer, Thumper or Bass What is a Sub Speaker? A Sub is a speaker specifically designed to reproduce a narrow band of low frequencies ranging from approx 20Hz up to approx 150Hz. Low frequencies require a lot of energy to be heard, and the large round drivers in a sub speaker move huge amounts of air to create low frequency sound waves. Low frequencies are not only heard but also felt, providing that thump or rumble through the body, enhancing the auditory experience for the audience. Source: Meyer Sound | USW-1P What events are Sub Speakers used on? Subs are commonly used at concerts, festivals, clubs and cinemas where the full spectrum of sound is required to be reproduced at loud volumes. For corporate events such as meetings and conferences where there is a lot of verbal discussion, there is not much acoustical benefit from using sub speakers due to the human voice not producing many frequencies below 150Hz. However for events such as gala dinners and product launches, where you want to make an impact on the audience, drawing them in through the play back of music tracks and video clips, then sub speakers should be used to provide that extra experience. Imagine the affect on your audience, who are not only hearing the soundtrack but also feeling it. You are now communicating with your audience on a completely different level! Where are Sub Speakers placed at an event? Sub speakers have a low profile and are typically positioned on the floor near the stage area where connectivity to power and audio signals are readily available. Very little is required to add sub speakers to an existing audio visual system, technically it is just an extension to the frequency response of the existing system. Don't just hear the sound, feel the sound! Next time you want to make an impact with your audience and get them feeling your message as well as hearing it, make sure to request sub speakers. Up next week... Next week we take a look at vision fold back and how it assists key note speakers and presenters with their audience communication. In the meantime if you have any AV terms or words you would like our AV experts to tackle leave a comment on the blog post below. Written by Andrew Thorne, ANZPAC Trainer & Assessor, Staging Connections. Andrew Thorne is ANZPAC Trainer & Assessor and drives our training programs at Staging Connections, including our Certificate III in Live Production and Services Program for our new trainees. Related Blogs Techie Tuesday: Talk Back Systems Optimise your event communication with design and production Techie Tuesday: What is a Graphic Equaliser and why do I need one? ... Read More

What benefit does Vision Foldback provide in your Audio Visual Solution?

Each week we aim to demystify the world of AV equipment and event services lingo and reveal exactly what those techs are talking about. In this weeks Techie Tuesday we look at Vision Foldback as part of your audio visual solution and how it can keep your speaker in the know and your audience engaged. Each week we aim to demystify the world of AV equipment and event services lingo and reveal exactly what those techs are talking about. In this weeks Techie Tuesday we look at Vision Foldback as part of your audio visual solution and how it can keep your speaker in the know and your audience engaged. AV Discipline: Vision AV Category: AV Equipment AV Jargon: Foldback, Comfort Monitor What is Vision Foldback? Vision foldback describes monitors positioned along the front of stage, which are strategically angled for the talent on stage to review during an event. The monitors are used to display event information without the audience knowing or seeing any details. What type of event is Vision Foldback used on? Events such as conferences, meetings, annual general meetings, and video conferences commonly use vision foldback to assist presenters and panellists onstage with elements such as the slide presentation, session time keeping, speaker notes, video replay and online questions. With vision foldback positioned in their line of sight, this allows a presenter or panellist to always maintain eye contact with the audience and prevent the need to crick their necks to look up at projection screens behind stage. Source: Staging Connections | Learning & Development What are the benefits of Vision Foldback? One major advantage of foldback, is that it allows a presenter to step away from the confines of the lectern, and experience the freedom of the entire stage. This freedom brings an opportunity for a presenter to utilise body language in the communication of their message. What is required for effective Vision Foldback for presenters?! A few extra elements are required for effective vision foldback: Signal Splitter: a distribution amplifier is required to split the vision signal going to the projector(s). Computer: a laptop is required to run software such as the timing app. Monitor: a dedicated computer screen to display the event information A presenter, who is informed and never turns their back on their audience will ultimately convey confidence and build engagement with their audience. If you want your presenter to continuously engage with the audience, make sure to request vision foldback. Up next week... Next week we take a look behind the curtain and reveal what a kabuki drop is. In the meantime if you have any AV terms or words you would like our AV experts to tackle leave a comment on the blog post below or join in the conversation on Twitter @stgconnections using #techietuesday. Written by Andrew Thorne, ANZPAC Trainer & Assessor, Staging Connections. Andrew Thorne is ANZPAC Trainer & Assessor and drives our training programs at Staging Connections, including our Certificate III in Live Production and Services Program for our new trainees. Related Blogs Techie Tuesday: Talk Back Systems Optimise your event communication with design and production Techie Tuesday: What is a Graphic Equaliser and why do I need one? ... Read More

Top 5 event tips for the year ahead

Our new Business Development Director, John Edwards shares his top 5 event tips for 2014 including live polling, projection mapping and the art of creating engaging multimedia content. 1. Live Polling Gaining feedback from your audience following an event or a speaker session is not a new concept. There are a multitude of ways that exist post event such as email, the traditional written form right through to SMS. However the ability to get instant and real time feedback is the new reality and we can help integrate live audience response systems into any type of event. For a simple add on to your existing equipment specification we can now get instant feedback and statistics from your audience. We can help you design questions for your audience and incorporate them into your PowerPoint or Keynote presentation. The audience uses their own mobile phone or tablet to either vote or ask questions and the results are shown live to screen in a graph format which is guaranteed to get your audience totally involved in any topic. At the end of the event we can send the organiser all the statistics and percentages from throughout the day allowing insightful and instant feedback. This is pure ROI for a minimum outlay which delivers maximum impact. 2. Projection Mapping for Stage Presentations Whilst the current trend and obvious use for Projection Mapping is to use this technology to light up large city buildings and iconic monuments as seen in many outdoor events such as Vivid Sydney and White Night, at Staging Connections we have been looking at alternative uses for this amazing effect. We have been busy working with this technology for some time and have perfected the use of projection mapping onto commercial objects that fit on a stage you would find at an indoor event of varying scales. To date we have mapped objects such as cars, trucks and even fridges creating a spectacular effect and unexpected experience for guests in attendance. 3. Widescreen Blending Rather than use the traditional method of two screens and two projectors with different content, we are able to create more dynamic effects through widescreen blending. We can show you how you can have multiple images and multi layered visual content over a larger screen surface using just one projector. Check out the AHA VIC State Awards timelapse where you can see widescreen blending in action! 4. Multimedia Content Engaging Multimedia content can transform an event experience and even create a living event space – think more than the traditional video loops on a screen – you can take your attendee on a visual journey using moving imagery, video or photography projected 360 degrees around a room creating the illusion that they are within an experience and not just at an event. Motion graphics and multimedia technology is developing all the time and can be combined with projection for vision or lighting that reacts to touch – letting the attendee drive and direct their experience. 5. Budgets Most people are concerned about budgets and quite rightly so. If you have a limited budget, your choice of AV can make all the difference. Well positioned lighting can set the scene and add drama to any event through programmed lighting stings. Combine lighting with vision or multimedia content and you can make a real impact, without stretching the budget. Written by John Edwards,Business Development Director, Staging Connections. John enjoys meeting people and being able to introduce new ideas and technology to a variety of events. He loves taking a concept all the way through to final production. ... Read More

Our team in Southeast Queensland welcome clients Backstage

We recently invited our loyal clients and valued venue partners to join us Backstage at our Queensland Head office. We recently invited our loyal clients and valued venue partners to join us Backstage at our Queensland Head Office. In our educational sessions our event experts went back to basics and spoke on a range of topics including Audio, Vision and Lighting as well as demonstrating the newest innovations in digital events including Webcasting. Our Event Design Manger Sean also covered the latest trends in the world of styling and design, giving his top predication's for 2014. If you want to get the insider knowledge you can download his presentation here. Don't forget to check out the album below for all the behind the scenes pictures from the day, and, if you would like to register your interest for our next Backstage Event series simply email your details to Susan on shamilton@stagingconnections.com. ... Read More

Staging an Awards Night to remember

We have been lucky enough to be involved in some great events for our amazing clients over the last few months. So we thought we would share a few of our most recent awards nights and pass on a few top tips from our wonderful team of event experts on what to remember when staging an awards night or large gala dinner. We have been lucky enough to be involved in some great events for our amazing clients over the last few months. So we thought we would share a few of our most recent awards nights and pass on a few top tips from our wonderful team of event experts on what to remember when staging an awards night or large gala dinner. 1. cievents - Awards Night This annual awards night was held at The Royal Hall of Industries next to The Hordern Pavilion in conjunction with our event partner’s cievents. The concept was to tie the stage look in with the industrial vibe and feel of the venue. We wanted to create impact and a party atmosphere but were also conscious about making sure everyone had a great view of the stage as the evening was going to be heavily focused on the stage and the award winners. 2. AICD Gold Medal Awards Night Our newest in-house venue, the beautiful not long restored Brisbane City Hall, was home to the 30th annual AICD Gold Medal awards. The historic venue provided an amazing setting for the night as the stage provided a great vantage point for the awards to take place, making sure everyone had a great view of all the action. The newly restored dome provided a great backdrop for the lighting and our talented team created a bespoke lighting sting to showcase the new space and create some ‘extra’ entertainment for the evening. 3. AFTA Awards Night The AFTA awards were held in The Hordern Pavilion in Sydney. The awards ceremony is the premier industry event of the year so each year needs to be delivered bigger and better! This year was no exception and our talented team followed the brief to the letter. Our large scale stage set featured the Southern Hemispheres (and the world’s 5th) largest mirror ball weighing in at a massive 287kg and measuring 7ft in diameter!! It certainly had the wow factor and helped create the party atmosphere desired. The room also featured some amazing bespoke centrepieces from Qantas and the table layout created the stage walkway for the award winners and a floor space for the entertainment acts throughout the night which included three Aerial acts and Australian signer Jessica Mauboy. Our top tips for staging an Awards Night to Remember 1. Get inspired and watch the biggies Our creative teams get inspiration from the big commercial awards night such as the BAFTA’s, Academy Awards and home-grown Logies! Watch some of these awards nights and take on board any ideas or trends that you would like to replicate. An experienced technical production team will be able to reproduce some of the most complex looking staging with audio and video stings, lighting ballyhoo’s and dynamic set pieces. 2. Make everyone feel like a winner with clever sound, lighting and vision It’s important that you keep everyone involved and energised to create that celebratory mood for the night. Table positioning with clear line of site of the stage is paramount to keeping your attendees engaged. If the space doesn’t allow for clear vision think carefully about screen placement. The sound of the night can help create the buzz, think about introducing individual sound stings for each award winner or a pop song instead of the classic music. Lighting will also allow you to build up energy with lots of movement and changes in colour. 3. Set the formality of the event with Styling The dress code can have a big impact on the formality of the night and sets your guests expectations. You need to make sure the styling of the event reflects the formality. For instance if you are having a black tie event, adding black chair covers and black linens instantly sets the formality and the tone for the evening. 4. A strong MC to control that party atmosphere Choosing a MC for your awards night is a big decision as the choice of MC can have a huge impact on the mood of the night. They act as the thread that holds the evening together and they need to be there to raise the energy at the start as well as control the atmosphere as the night progresses. Always hire a professional with a strong portfolio of awards night hosting. It will add a sense of professionalism and credibility to the evening. 5. And finally, what awards night wouldn’t be complete with a PARTY a. The choice of act for the finale is key to keeping the party atmosphere going and ensuring the night ends on a high! You want to be dragging people off the dance floor as the event is packing down at the end of the night; there is no better sign of a successful evening. Written By, Stuart Buchanan, Sydney Sales Manager With event production experience spanning 17 years, Stuart’s local and international knowledge and know-how has set him up to be a true industry professional. From the early 1990’s Stuart worked as a music and fashion event promoter before moving into the corporate events field and has been with Staging Connections for over 12 years. ... Read More

Transforming your event space with styling

When you want to turn an ordinary event into an extraordinary experience, you need to combine the best of technology, lighting and styling with impact and flair. When you want to turn an ordinary event into an extraordinary experience, you need to combine the best of technology, lighting and styling with impact and flair. From setting the scene for an intimate boardroom dinner, styling a contemporary cocktail function through to extravagant gala dinners or awards nights, styling is a powerful part of the events mix as it can ultimately be used to communicate your message and create an event experience that engages and is above all, memorable. We have come a long way from the days of a balloon archways and the best events now combine digital and technological elements such as visual projection and theatrical sound effects with traditional styling to create an immersive event experience for guests. Key ways to transform an event experience include; Fabulous florals, commanding centrepieces, furniture, props and linen The use of bold coloured lighting can convey branding and company messages. LED lighting offers an energy efficient, cost effective and varied solution to traditional lighting. ‘Digital Styling’ involves the use of projection, digital backdrops, banners and sets and provides a customised and tailored event space and experience. Image projection can transform a room into a living space – you can take your attendee on a visual journey using moving imagery, video or photography projected 360 degrees around a room creating the illusion that they are within the experience transporting them from the event space to a whole new world. The opportunities are truly endless. When considering the choices for your event styling, even if you have a limited budget, your choice of AV can make all the difference. Well positioned lighting can set the scene and add drama. Vision or multimedia content can make a real impact and create memories whilst traditional styling such as centrepieces and florals add the final polish to transform the event space and immerse your guests in the experience. Written by Ashley Gabriel – General Manager SA/ NT Ash shares with us that the best event he ever worked on was a Video conference for the Queen. He commented that whilst there were obvious challenges in ensuring technology worked in two countries, it was all worth it once the team saw the Queen smiling and amusing to see Prince Philip's reaction when he realised we were watching him back here in Australia. ... Read More