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... edited by Barry Mishkind - the Eclectic Engineer    

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NAB 2011

Some comments on NAB 2011:

[4-21-11]  The 2011 NAB Spring show demonstrated the changing nature of the industry. A total of 92,708 were registered for the Spring Show this year, up from 88,044 last year. It was interesting to note that 25,691 (28%) of the attendees were international.
On the floor, it did seem that there were more folks attending, especially after a brief lull on Tuesday. Many of the international folks came from South America, perhaps signaling a major sales opportunity before the next Olympics, scheduled for Brazil. 

We will have more on the this page and others about NAB week as things calm down and sort out. There is a lot to tell ... so please check back for more reports!


ON THE FLOOR - The Best of Show

Generally everyone agreed traffic was as good or better than expected. Despite a short lull on Tuesday morning, which caused folks to wonder, Tuesday did not turn into a Wednesday - and  some booths had brisk business all the way through the show.

Spring is the time for showing off new products, and just some "almost ready" products. This year was no exception. It was also a time to renew old acquaintances and make some new ones.



As usual, there were some new products on the floor that stood out. Here are some of what caught our eyes and interest - and should receive your attention, too:

Henry Electronics' Stereo Audio Monitor got a lot of attention.

A novel way to check stereo level and phase with a single set of LEDs for each, the SAM impressed a lot of folks.

A busy booth was found at AEQ - and not just because of the vino tinto and jamon! Among the new products they featured The Forum, a new digital console and a telephone hybrid, the TH-03.

Another console of interest was at Wheatstone, including the AudioArts X-12/IP-12 series of consoles for radio, and more for TV. 

Logitek had a impressive new model of their Roc console on display with OLED displays, the ability to make any button any color (Red, Blue, Green, Yellow, Gray, etc.- what would you like?), built in mic and line compressors, delay, and more.

Of course, EAS products were being shown, in the manufacturer's booths and in the FEMA booth. As the week progresses we learned Trilithic was added to the list (Digital Alert Systems' DASDEC and Sage Endec) that passed the FEMA Conformity Assessment.

DAS also brought to the show a new interface, the DASMP Multiplayer to connect multiple stations, so they can have tests/alerts at the same time - or overlapping - without crashing.


You might think transmitters have reached the point where there is not a lot left to be added. The new units shown by BW Broadcast and Harris, along with new features on the Nautel VS prove a lot of planning and thinking is going on.

BW Broadcast brought an example of their Aptus line of transmitters.

With models ranging from 300 to 2000 Watts, and fully IP accessible, these seemed like a great way to have anything from a cost-effective main, translator, booster, or auxiliary on hand, ready to handle any number of needs.

Harris showed a very attractive a new line of digital FM transmitters, the Flexiva, using LDMOS devices - which are said to provide a much more efficient output than in other FM transmitters. Using a modular stacking arrangement, Harris' new transmitters run from 1 to 20,000 Watts.

In addition to other features including adaptive pre-correction and modules that are hot-swappable, the transmitters have an enhanced GUI control, whether at the transmitter site or via TCP/IP

(Left: 1 kw, right: complete 20 kW HD in a rack)


Among the new items in the Nautel booth was an HD adaptor, adding to the features of the VS series of transmitters which debuted last year.


A new option in connecting the transmitter to the antenna systems comes from Myat, with their co-axial switchers.

Monitoring and diagnosing what the transmitter is doing - in both analog and digital domains - will be much easier for users of Belar's new monitors, the FMCS-1 and the FMHD-1. The displays show virtually anything you might want to know.

Inovonics also had a new HD Radio Receiver, the 632-HD, increasing the choices for stations who want to know what they and the competition are doing.


We do not want to forget the new audio processors from Inovonics and Omnia. Inovonics showed the David IV-FM, Omnia had their new Omnia.9, and Wheatstone their and the IV-88VE audio processor. Each brought something new to the audio processing field. The Omnia.9 came from European Leif Claesson's mind - as Omnia expanded its line to cover even more processing applications and philosophies - progressing further and further away from "one size fits all" processing.

Inovonics David IV-FM



What can we say? With all that audio power going on, you had to know there would have to be some serious dancing breaking out in the Omnia booth!


And then there was the traditional "sign off" on Thursday. Trust us - it was louder than ever. All heads (and ears) were turned to the Omnia booth as we got ready to leave and hear Frank's pick hit of the year.





Another "jumpin'" location on Tuesday was at our usual Gathering ... the 19th Annual Lunch Gathering, in fact. Close to 100 engineers, consultants, managers, owners, manufacturers, etc. came together to enjoy seeing and greeting one another.  Among the door prizes: An Orban Opticodec. A call went out for anyone with an Orban processor key, but bizarrely, although some still carry them, they did not bring them to lunch!  The Opticodec was given away by drawing.

Alan Alsobrook has some pictures from the Lunch ... check here.



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