graphene-battery-0816My company has been knee deep in the design of high end audiovisual technology for a major new health education client and one of the main drivers of the project is to allow for as much portable wireless technology as possible – laptops, cell phones, tables, etc. There are a few major concerns with this directive in which we have to overcome – power being a really big one. This one rises to the top of the objectives as the client is really big on sustainability and has been recognized by not only their industry but even the current presidential administration as being a leader in environmental consciousness.

With most of the students and faculty expected to have multiple devices in which to use for everything from class work, labs, research and even socializing these devices will need to be powered and recharged constantly. This is in addition to any of the audiovisual technology that is powered via battery that will be integrated into to project for everything from presentation to collaboration. The design team has taken care to explore what the current state of power demand is and to look into the crystal ball as to what it might be when this facility opens as a leading example of medical education in the future. As a result of this permeability of technology, the power demand has the potential to be significant by sheer quantity, not necessarily by the individual power draw of each device.

Currently most of these devices, as well as other technologies that run on batteries, rely on lithium-ion battery power. Lithium-ion has become the standard bearer of battery technology for its ability to store dense energy and recharge rather quickly compared to nickel-cadmium, nickel metal hydride or older alkaline batteries and others. The benefit of being able to recharge rather than replace has had a huge impact of battery usage and what ultimately would wind up in a land fill.

Limitations of many of these technologies has ranged from battery life, recharge cycles, speed of recharge and the environmental impact of the materials used in the process and product of making these energy capsules. Recently however a new technology has emerged that is sure to have a ripple effect in portable batter powered devices. Researchers at Australia’s Swinburne University developed a new batter technology using a unique form of carbon called graphene and super capacitors. Graphene is a super strong, super flexible form of carbon that has several unique properties suitable to this application including its ability to store and transfer electricity. This works because of the honey-comb shape of the graphene material having an increased surface area. The technique developed addresses many of the shortcomings of lithium-ion batteries including the number of times you can recharge them before they die, capacity of the charge, the environmental impact and the heat generated by both the charging and discharging process.

Researchers have worked for years trying to perfect superconductor batter replacements but the storage capacity has always been the limiting factor. By inserting the graphene sheets between the layers capacity and efficiency levels soared. Additionally, the environmental benefits are immediate as the graphene sheets can be 3D printed, which eliminates waste in the manufacturing process. It is made of carbon so it is neutral and harmless to the environment as well as recyclable. Since the re-charge capacity is not only immensely faster (seconds to minutes, not hours) with also a significant increase in the number of times it can be recharged before losing strength, the technology is positioned as a prime candidate for replacing your next set of batteries. Additionally, as a result of the way in which these batteries can be manufactured, the costs should be comparable or less than lithium-based batteries and will certainly be more cost-effective in terms of total ownership due to the number of recharges it can handle of lithium. Also, since the graphene sheets can be 3D-printed and are flexible, new battery shapes are possible and could even potentially be seen in wearable fabrics or intricate designs of 3D structures with minimal limitations as the graphene can also be used to develop the electronics signal pathways with batteries built into a flexible circuit board. This is still in the research phase, but it certainly will be interesting to see how it will impact building and technology design in the future and its impact on power demand.

Metra Home Theater Group to Intro Helios Tailgate TV Mount at CEDIA

cedia-metra-0816Metra Home Theater Group has announced the Helios Tailgate TV Mount. The Helios Tailgate Mount is works with TV’s from 32” to 55” and weighing up to 60 lbs. A simple mount attaches directly to a 2” trailer receiver hitch for quick and easy installation and it has a black powder coat finish which makes Helios weatherproof. The Helios Tailgate Mount is made VESA Complaint with 100×100, 200×200, 400×400 and 600×400 patterns.

In addition, Metra Home Theater Group is offering a two-part Lunch N’ Learn series, “Making the Jump to 18 Gbps” and “Making the Jump to Fiber,” both available for technologists interested in learning about High Dynamic Resolution (HDR), 4K Deep Color and the lengths you can take fiber. Jeff Boccaccio, president of DPL Labs, will again host the sessions, which focus on issues integrators face and the best way to resolve them. The Lunch N’ Learns will take place in booth #3005 on Thursday, September 15th and Friday, September 16th at 12:00 p.m. Early registration is recommended as seating and lunches are limited. To register for the Thursday or Friday Lunch N’ Learn, go here.

Here are all the details.

beyerdynamic Debuts New Gooseneck and Array Microphones with Programmable Button

PIC_Classis-GM31xSP-RC-Switch_16-04_detail-on_v1-0816beyerdynamic has extended its product range of the Classis installation microphone series with new gooseneck and vertical Revoluto Array microphones, which are fitted with programmable buttons. The button functions can be easily selected with a rotary control.

By using the programmable button of the SP variants you can select the operating mode ON/OFF, Push-To-Talk or Push-To-Mute. The microphone button can also be completely disabled. Furthermore, there are two settings of the frequency response possible: linear or with bass roll-off to suppress low-frequency noise. The LED ring to display the microphone status can be deactivated.

In addition to the features of the SP variants, the RC version allows the operation by an external control. In addition to this an external device can be controlled via the control output when operating the microphone button.


  • Classis GM 313 SP – gooseneck microphone, 300 mm (12“) long, LED ring, programmable button
  • Classis GM 315 SP – gooseneck microphone, 500 mm (20“) long, LED ring, programmable button
  • Classis GM 315 RC – gooseneck microphone, 500 mm (20“) long, LED ring, programmable button, remote control
  • Classis RM 31 SP – array microphone with Revoluto Technology, LED ring, programmable button
  • Classis RM 31 RC – array microphone with Revoluto technology, LED ring, programmable button, remote control

All the specs are here.

Apogee Intros MiC 96K USB Microphone

MiC96k-Mac-and-Windows-Product-Tour-Graphic-0816Apogee Electronics has announced the MiC 96k for Windows and Mac. MiC 96k is a professional 96kHz, 24-bit USB microphone that’s designed to capture vocals, voice overs, podcasts and acoustic musical instruments on a Windows or Mac computer. With MiC 96k and your laptop you can make studio-quality recordings anywhere.


  • Cardioid condenser microphone
  • Up to 96kHz, 24-bit analog-to-digital recording
  • Works on Mac and Windows 10 computers (and iOS devices)
  • Apogee engineered microphone preamp with up to 40dB of gain
  • Control knob allows easy input level adjustment
  • Multi-color LED for status indication and input level monitoring

The MiC 96K lists for $199 and here are all the specs.

AV Power Up! – Episode 68: When the Mission is Quality, and It’s Job One

AVPowerUp_750x400Join the Crew: Corey Moss, Justin Watts, Deron Pinchback, Joey D’Angelo and Sandy Ciarlo as they welcome their guests:

Mario Maltese – Executive Director at The Association for Quality in Audio Visual Technology, Inc. (AQAV) @AQAV_AV9000

Bill Nattress – Director of Channel Strategy-Paging at Biamp Systems @Biamp

We talk nothing but quality in AV on this episode, and with this there are four guarantees:

  1. We have one recognized influential industry guest (Mario Maltese) who will tell you all you need to know about AQAV – a non-profit organization dedicated to improving the operational art of designing and installing audio visual technology as well as the AV9000 standard, and the certified quality trainings they conduct
  2. Another well-known influential industry guest (Bill Nattress) who will help spread that gospel in his very own industry-influencing way, as well as tell us about some current Biamp goings-on
  3. You will get Justin Watts’ “Power Up” (on quality naturally) where he always tells it like it is
  4. It’s all free (imagine?)

Note this statement from the AQAV homepage: With AV technology moving from the eclectic to the mainstream of our corporate and educational cultures, the cost of technology exceeds $80B and is steadily growing worldwide. The estimates on the cost of poor quality, defects, lost hours, rework, etc. exceed $15B.

‘Nuff said.

So plug in, listen and don’t stop listening till the end – you’ll recognize a great sense of reward from the experience – along with having that usual AVP good time.


Green power button

Power Up!


August 12, 2016: SeatGeek to Offer Ticket Purchases Through Apps With New Platform, How the Seattle Art Fair Is Becoming the New Art Basel, Why an L.G.B.T.-Friendly Hotel in New York is Rebranding

1. SEATGEEK TO OFFER TICKET PURCHASES THROUGH APPS WITH NEW PLATFORM: Buying tickets through SeatGeek is about to become very simple for anyone with a smartphone. The ticketing site has announced it will launch SeatGeek Open, a platform that will let users buy tickets with almost every app. Mashable: “Through SeatGeek Open, an Uber customer who was in a ride toward a stadium, for example, could see and purchase tickets available for a game that day. ‘Ticketing has long been a closed industry, and one that hasn’t been positively impacted by the power of technology in the same way many other industries have,’ SeatGeek co-founder Jack Groetzinger said in a statement. ‘We believe the open ecosystem we’ve built will transform the way people access tickets, allowing fans to go to more live events and teams and artists to reach more fans.’ SeatGeek Open is a connective tool—it works with apps and brands to bring tickets to their platforms, and the consumer most likely won’t even know SeatGeek was involved. SeatGeek’s role is on the technology side of things. It will verify ticket barcodes for third parties like Uber and Facebook — something Ticketmaster, which holds a near monopoly over online ticket purchases, has confined within the walls of its site. The platform is focused on apps and mobile, but it would work online on a site like Facebook as well.”

2. HOW THE SEATTLE ART FAIR IS BECOMING THE NEW ART BASEL: As Art Basel in Miami continues to become more commercialized and less of an underground arts event, the Seattle Art Fair—which is in its second year—might be the new, go-to large-scale event for grassroots art. Playboy: “The brainchild of billionaire Microsoft tech giant, Seahawks owner and avid art collector Paul Allen, the 70,000-square foot, 84-gallery event brought 18,000 visitors to the Emerald City last weekend. A cursory rundown of SAF’s stats, which included an exhibitor list of heavy hitters like Pace and David Zwirner, presents like a fully formed Art Basel air-dropped on the West Coast via Jeff Bezos-commissioned drone, but it was the wave of companion fairs and satellite exhibits that elevated Allen’s main event from what could have been an impressive-yet-boring gathering to a unique addition to the contemporary art scene. A slew of local players and international tastemakers used the weekend as an opportunity to piggyback off of the visibility of Allen’s event, from Greg Lundgren’s Pac Northwest-focused companion fair Out of Sight at the nearby King Street Station, to Superflat, a melting pot of international artists co-curated by Juxtapoz’s Evan Pricco and the prolific Takashi Murakami. Why Seattle and why now? In addition to the fair’s billionaire patron, Seattle houses a huge population of artists doing interesting things in a city without the art-world prestige of L.A., Miami or New York. ‘In Seattle, people really focus on the work,’ says Greg Lundgren, the man behind SAF’s primary companion fair (whose professional credits also include fine art tombstone maker) and owner of retro Seattle nightlife staples Vito’s and the Hideout. ‘It’s honest. It comes from a place of deep contemplation. We have all the ingredients to really start an interesting national and international dialogue. And I think Seattle Art Fair is that thing.’

3. WHY AN L.G.B.T.-FRIENDLY HOTEL IN NEW YORK IS REBRANDING: What was once a popular tourist and gay-friendly hotel in New York, the Out Hotel is being sold to Merchants Hospitality and will be rebranded as a general boutique hotel. The New York Times: “The hotel stands in something of a no-man’s-land between Times Square and the Hudson River. For a while, its big nightclub, XL, drew a crowd. But its relative popularity was short-lived. So, too, was that of Mr. Reisner and Mr. Weiderpass in the gay community. The two business partners (and onetime life-partners) learned the bitter taste of internet notoriety last spring after hosting an event at their home attended by Sen. Ted Cruz, then a Republican presidential candidate, who has been an opponent of marriage equality for gays and lesbians. The hotel tried to play up its gay-branding in certain special events and in its lobby art. Earlier this summer, the lobby walls were adorned with Barbie doll dioramas that depicted various dolls in same-sex situations: two male dolls walking hand-in-hand; two women—one in a white gown, another in a white sleeveless tuxedo—at their wedding. … The necessity for a so-called gay hotel in the center of New York City was never entirely clear. ‘Gays travel a lot and for anyone who travels a lot, the hospitality industry goes out of its way to be very hospitable,’ said Nathan Lump, the editor in chief of Travel & Leisure and editorial director of Time Inc.’s lifestyle group. Attracting gay travelers is an imperative for hotel groups. Many hotels and hotel chains have diversity officers who oversee the process of educating employees and making properties inclusive of all travelers. Hilton published an advertisement in the June isse of Travel & Leisure showing two men, dressed, wearing wedding rings and cuddling in bed. (A social-media backlash to the ad developed several weeks after it was published when a group called the American Family Association started an anti-Hilton petition.)”


AUSTIN:  The seventh annual Fantastic Arcade, a fan event for arcade games, will take place September 26 in conjunction with Alamo Drafthouse’s Fantastic Fest. This year’s Fantastic Arcade will have the premiere of several new games in custom-built, free-to-play arcade cabinets at the Highball event center throughout the duration of Fantastic Fest.

CHICAGO:  Brookfield’s Zoo’s fifth annual Zoo Brew will take place August 26-27. The event will feature 80 beers from around 30 breweries. 

HOUSTON:  Holiday Inn Houston NE-Bush Airport, a 142-room hotel in Humble, opened on August 4.

LAS VEGAS:  GES, a global full-service event production agency, has acquired ON Event Services, a national provider of audiovisual production and technology services.

Db Brasserie’s head sommelier Devin Zendel will welcome guests to experience wines from the Boisset Collection during a wine dinner on October 7 at the restaurant inside the Venetian Las Vegas.

LOS ANGELES:  Sāmbār, a modern Indian restaurant in Culver City, will close August 27 with plans to reopen in September as an Italian restaurant with a new name to be announced. 

Rock and Reilly’s, an Irish pub, will relocate from West Hollywood to the Financial District in the space formerly occupied by the Mexican restaurant FOH. The move is expected to take place sometime this fall. 

For information on upcoming events in Los Angeles, visit Masterplanner:

MIAMI/SOUTH FLORIDA:  The seafood restaurant and bar Watr has opened on the rooftop at 1 Hotels & Homes in South Beach. 

The fast casual chicken restaurant Le Chick Rotisserie will open in Wynwood in 2017. The 4,000-square-foot space will be the American version of the European restaurant concept Rotisserie Amsterdam.

Homewood Suites by Hilton Miami-Airport/Blue Lagoon has appointed Chris Hammons general manager. 

NASHVILLE:  The Westin Nashville, which opens September 27, has appointed Don Holowiecki as director of finance; Adam Smith as executive meetings manager of sales; Leisa Recabo as social catering manager; and Michael Pisano as conference service manager.

Nordstrom will present the second annual Off the Record, an fashion and music event set to take place October 29 the Factory at Franklin. The fashion show will include work from designers such as Naeem Khan, Stella McCartney, and John Varvatos. 

NEW YORK:  MTV has announced that Rihanna will receive the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award at the V.M.A.s on August 28.

City Vineyard, operated by the team behind City Winery, has opened at Pier 26 in TriBeCa. The American restaurant can accommodate 60 people seated inside and 200 standing on the roof deck. There is also an outdoor dining area that can seat 20, and a downstairs wine garden that can seat 50.

Actress/model Cindy Guyer has opened wine/tapas bar Guyer’s in the Upper West Side space formerly occupied by Wine and Roses. The 1,000-square-foot venue serves Southern-inspired cuisine, and can seat 60 in the main dining room and 16 at the bar.

Artist Spencer Finch will recreate a section of Redwood National Park in California with a 4,500-square-foot mini forest that will feature 4,000 young dawn redwood trees. The installation will be on display October 1-May 13, 2018 at MetroTech Commons in Brooklyn.

The Olana Partnership’s 2016 Frederic Church Award Gala will take place October 13 at the Metropolitan Club.

For information on upcoming events in New York, visit Masterplanner:

SAN FRANCISCO:  Two Birds/One Stone, a 4,000-square-foot restaurant, has opened in St. Helena. The venue, which offers California-inspired yakitori cuisine, seats 80 in the main dining room and 35 on the patio. 

TAMPA:  Kira Jefferson has been named director of restaurants at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tampa.

WASHINGTON, D.C.:  Ocean Prime, a modern American restaurant and lounge from Cameron Mitchell Restaurants, will open in October in the Colorado Building.

YOUR NEWS: What are you doing? Tell us: [email protected]

JOB BOARD: Post a job or find a job:

With contributions from Jenny Berg in Chicago, Alesandra Dubin and Claire Hoffman in Los Angeles, Mitra Sorrells in Orlando, and Carla Hay, Beth Kormanik, Michele Laufik, Jill Menze, and Ian Zelaya in New York.

BizBash Daily is the must-read digest of event industry news from

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See How Pillows Helped Design an Entire Bar

New York grit met the vibrancy of Miami’s bohemian Wynwood neighborhood at a private July 15 event planned by Koncept Events. The event, held in the open-air parking garage 11 11 Lincoln Road, included several eye-catching bars, including one that took its design inspiration from a throw pillow. The black-and-white bar had customized, printed decal bar fronts whose pattern was created from a photo taken of the pillows. The event—which had color themes of black, white, and yellow—also included hand-painted and hand-taped vases, Miami street-inspired food stations by Starr Catering Group, entertainers who played marching-band drums on stilts, and a functional Hummer that doubled as a DJ booth. About 700 guests attended.

10 Best Ideas of the Week: Model Volleyball, a 'Bachelorette'-Inspired Apartment, Olympics-Branded Hand-Clappers

This week’s roundup includes model volleyball in the Hamptons, a Bachelorette-inspired apartment in New York, Olympics-branded hand-clappers in Washington, and kitschy pink flamingo floral arrangements in Los Angeles.

TrendWatch: Pickleball


Combine badminton, tennis, and ping-pong and you get Pickleball, a sport increasing in popularity, especially among seniors.

“Perhaps no organized sport since baseball, football and basketball matches pickleball’s seduction of so wide a swath of the population,” Peter T. Kilborn reported for The New York Times in 2014. “Last year pickleball was admitted to the National Senior Games, the first new sport in 20 years.”

The sport was invented in 1965 in Washington and more than 200,000 people in the U.S. play it on 9,863 courts.

A pickleball court is 20 feet by 44 feet with a net that hangs at 34 inches in the middle. A non-volley zone extends seven feet from the net on each side. It is played with a ball similar to a Wiffle ball and paddles that are twice the size of ping-pong paddles. Points are only awarded to the person or team serving, and games play to 11 points (win by two).

“As more retirement locations have adopted pickleball as an integrated sports activity for their population of residents, we have a seen an explosion of new court construction throughout the United States – especially in the southern states,” The USA Pickleball Association reported. “Tennis, racquetball, and ping pong players love the competitive nature of the sport and regularly participate in local, regional, and national tournaments.”

Pickleball’s popularity doesn’t seem to be slowing down anytime soon, and it may just be a good source of alternative revenue for a venue, perhaps by hosting a large tournament.

(Image: Michael Martin/Creative Commons)

QSC Systems Appoints Director of Sales for Central Region

Bart Wood

QSC has welcomed Bart Wood as its new director of sales, Central region, for the systems business unit. Wood will work closely with its channel partners to further develop and manage the central region of the United States.  

“QSC has built a world-class systems sales team, and Bart Wood is an ideal expansion to this group,” said Frank West, senior director of systems sales, Americas. “He comes to us with over 16 years of experience in the AV industry, most which he spent working in our target markets.”

Bart comes to QSC from SVSi, a Harman company, where he was the director of sales, strategic accounts for the last three years. Prior to that, Bart spent two years as the national sales manager at Vivitek Corporation, a division of Delta Electronics, which is one of the largest manufacturers of large-venue DLP projectors. At Vivitek, he helped develop a successful channel strategy and a powerful rep force in the U.S. He was also sales manager at EDA Marketing, a manufacturer’s rep firm, where he received several rep of the year awards and managed strategic dealers and manufacturers.

“I am excited to be part of the QSC team,” Wood said. “As a technical sales person, it’s great to be a part of something that will shape the path of future technologies. QSC certainly has its finger on the pulse of the AV industry, and I am humbled by the opportunity to continue working with the channel. Networked AV is the future and I look forward to helping our dealers realize the true relevance of QSC.”

Wood will be based in Birmingham, AL and will report to Frank West.