Posted tagged ‘technical’

A Post I Wish I Had Written

March 16, 2010

Every once in a while I get really jealous of other bloggers. Like when someone writes a brilliant post backed up with lots of examples and research. This is one of those posts. This guy, Todd Miro, has a blog where he commented on one of the most widespread misuses of technology in Hollywood. It’s brilliant.

screen capture from Transformers 2
And here’s the link to his article: Teal and Orange – Hollywood, Please Stop the Madness

Kudos to you, Todd.


FAQ: Oakbrook’s Huge New Center Screen

November 5, 2009

Starting with Concert With A Cause: The Beatles, Oakbrook has had a new addition to the main stage – a huge new center screen backdrop. I’ve had many people ask me about it. Some want to know the technical details, some are curious what software is involved, and some are curious how much money it cost! So I thought I’d write a little bit about it here on the blog.

First, some pictures so those of you who haven’t seen it can get a little taste of it:


1. How big is the screen?
The projected image is 60′ wide and approximately 20′ tall.

2. How do you get such a super wide single image?
It is done by splitting the image into halves, and using two projectors side by side to create one huge image.

3. What is the screen resolution?
Both projectors output a 4:3 image. Together, their resolution is 2560 x 960.

4. I notice you’ve used it for still images, video loops, lyric projection, and scriptures passages. What software is used to do that?
We have recently switched to the worship software package ProPresenter, which is made by the company Renewed Vision.

5. What other equipment is involved?
ProPresenter runs on Mac computers only, so you’d need one of those. Next, you need the external box which splits the image into two. The one we use is called the DualHead2Go. Then you need a couple of projectors (we repurposed two that were already in the auditorium). Finally, you need a screen or backdrop to project onto. We are using a 60’w x 25’h seamless sharkstooth scrim (which we already owned.)

6. How much does it cost?
If you attend Oakbrook, you can rest assured that we did not spend much money at all to make the center screen happen. The only thing we had to buy was the DualHead2Go, which is about $200. Everything else we already owned. If you are starting from scratch someplace else, then I would say you need a good Mac computer, the software, the DualHead, the projectors, lenses, and screen surface. That could end up being quite a bit of money!

7. How did you make the super-wide video support for the Switchfoot song, “Mess Of Me?”
We created the video using our normal video editing software, Final Cut Pro. We just created a new sequence setting that is 1280×480. We sent the final output through Mpeg-4 compression, and dropped the finished file right into ProPresenter. You can see this song on Oakbrook’s YouTube channel here:

Tech Roundtable at Granger

June 2, 2008

Here’s a few pictures from my trip to Granger last Friday. Click on an image to see the full version (of course these were taken with a cell phone so they’re not great resolution to begin with.) More information about this event can be found on Anthony Coppedge’s blog. Anthony’s MindMap thing is on there in addition to some more pix (including some of yours truly!) More tech info about Granger can be found on Technical Director Adam Callender’s blog. My CSC buddy Mark Wyse from Blackhawk Church in Madison WI was there, too.

One great thing I came away with was how clearly defined the roles of the various teams are at Granger. They are basically “one word definitions.”. For example, the Production and Technical Teams are the “HOW.” The Programming and Creative Teams do the “WHAT”, and the Senior Management Team’s role is the “WHY”. How simple is that? How often do your programming team meetings get bogged down discussing the “HOW?” How often do your Strategic or management teams get bogged down in the “WHAT?” Having clearly defined roles helps the process so much.

Stage Look 1 Alternate view of the stage drumkit setup
In the first two pix above, you can see the main stage area with the 43′ wide center screen, and the two smaller screens to the side. The little tables in front of the stage is where the Tech Roundtable took place. In all, there were about 12-15 participants. In the thrid picture, you can see a small Canon GL camera to the right of the drumkit. There are several of those around the stage. I think they use these instead of a roving stage cam.

Marshall Amp Marshall Amp 2 Buttkicker
This big Marshall half-stack sits on the main stage at Granger almost every weekend. But if you take a close look, you’ll see its just a dummy cabinet held together with duct tape and shoe polish! On the right you see the “buttkicker” low frequency shaker attached to the drum throne.

Monitor mix position Studer closeup Studer Digital Snake
The monitor mix position is handled by ONE of their THREE Studer digital mixing consoles. On the right pic, you’ll see the Studer Digital snake rack. Every input and output can be routed anywhere on the campus with 2 fiber cables.

Truss LightingColor Scrollers Rear Screen View
Each truss light has a DMX-controllable color scroller mounted to it. This means they can select the gel color via DMX at any time. No more changing gels! On the right you have the perspective of looking out to the main stage from the backstage area.

Rear Projectors Screen from stage Pedalboards
The rear projectors for the center screen are mounted on the 2nd level of the backstage area. There are four projectors total (2 positions double-stacked.) The middle pic is an on-stage perspective of the screens. The third pic shows the simple shelving supports used to store guitar effects pedalboards when not in use.

McGyver Mic Holder Vox and Line6 Vox and Orange
On the left you see their MacGyver setup for organizing wireless transmitters – a clear ladies shoe organizer! And poor Granger. They can’t afford to have top-of-the-line brand name solid state amps. They have to settle for these off-brand, antique-style tube amps to get their sounds. (sense the sarcasm:-)

Screen Control Lighting Control View of the booth
The left pic is of the video screen control station, which constrols which image is displayed where. They can move images from screen to screen in real time with the Spyder system. The middle pic is a great shot at all the WholeHog PC stuff Granger uses for lighting control. BONUS: Granger staff member and recent high school graduate Jonathan Bartkowiak. And the third image is of the upper booth which contains all the tech except sound, which is down below on the floor.

Broadcast Mix Position IMAG switching AV Racks
On the left is the Studer which is used for the “broadcast mix” which is what you hear on the website. In the middle is the IMAG camera switching station. On the right are the video racks, which house switchgear, the Spyder, Hard Disk playback, and more.

Yamaha SubKick
Notice the yamaha “SubKick” microphone on the kick drum. Inside the shell is a 6.5″ speaker which is wired to operate as a low frequency microphone.