Avolites

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Avolites Ltd is a British manufacturing company based in Park Royal, London. Avolites manufactures lighting control consoles and stage dimming equipment for use in the entertainments lighting industry. In 2011 the company expanded into the media server sector of the entertainments technology market by acquiring software developed by Immersive Ltd, supplying control systems used in the 2012 Olympics opening ceremony.

Avolites Ltd
Type Private company limited by shares[1]
Industry Professional stage lighting equipment
Headquarters London, United Kingdom[2]
Key people
Products
  • Art 2000
  • Art 2000 PowerCube
  • Titan One
  • Titan Mobile
  • Tiger Touch
  • Pearl Expert
  • Sapphire Touch
  • Titan Net Processor
Website avolites.com

History[edit]

Avolites started as a lighting production company in 1978 when a group of touring road crew formed a company to manufacture their designs for a touring dimmer rack, the Avolites FD dimmer.[5][6] The company then expanded into manufacturing lighting control consoles, initially releasing the 8100 series, before creating the QM500 series in 1983. During the 1980s the reputation of the brand grew[7] and by the late 1980s the company was purchased by Carlton Television.[8] The company was returned to private ownership as part of a management buy out in 1991. Eventually the lighting production work was discontinued and the company focused on equipment manufacturing only.[3][8]

During the 1990s the company introduced several new products designed to control the range of intelligent lighting products that were emerging onto the market at the time, releasing the Rolacue Sapphire, Pearl 2000 (released 1995), Sapphire 2000 (released 1998) and Diamond II/III consoles. Most of these consoles were based on Motorola 68000 family processors. In 1996 the company also updated the FD dimmer, replacing it with the Art 4000.

During the 2000s the dimmer product range was redesigned again, resulting in the Art 2000 series of racks; the Art 2000i installation racks and - in the later part of the decade - the PowerCube dimmer/distribution units.[5] In 2001 Avolites launched the Diamond 4 range of control consoles,[9] which was based on a conventional PC motherboard instead of custom made hardware reliant on Motorola processors. Although the custom hardware consoles were still sold and updated in stages during the 2000s, the company gradually moved software development towards the Windows OS running on conventional PC motherboards. This move allowed the company to re-write its lighting control software, resulting in the release of the Titan software series in the late 2000s.

Since the introduction of Titan the company has designed a range of consoles specifically to run the software, including the Titan One USB DMX dongle, Titan Mobile, Tiger Touch and Sapphire Touch consoles, which were all introduced between 2009 and 2012.

Avolites Media[edit]

David Green, Mark Calvert and Ralph Lambert formed a VJ collective known as Inside-Us-All initially working on visual effects for the rave and party scene. The trio decided to expand into more corporate work and took on a new staff member, John Munro, forming the Pixel Addicts company at the time. Pixel Addicts was later renamed to Immersive and it was within Immersive that the "Addict" media server software was developed.[10]

In June 2011, Avolites acquired the rights to the Addict media server software developed by Immersive,[11][3][12] rebranded it as "Ai" and formed a spin-off company called Avolites Media.[10] The media server products were used in the Olympic opening and closing ceremonies of 2012 to perform video mapping across the audience seats.[13][14]

Products[edit]

Avolites has manufactured a wide range of lighting control products, accessories and software, but is best known for its range of control consoles and dimmer racks.

Former[edit]

The following products are no longer manufactured and are listed with their launch year:[5]

Dimmers[edit]

  • FD Dimmer Rack (1975)[5]
  • Art 4000 Dimmer Rack (1996)[5]

FD dimmers were manufactured from 1980. they were designed by Paul Ollett.

Control consoles[edit]

  • QM500 (1983)[5]
  • Rolacue Sapphire, Sapphire 2000 (1998)[5]
  • Diamond, Diamond II, Diamond III, Diamond 4 (2001),[5] Diamond 4 Elite, Diamond 4 Vision
  • Pearl 2000 (1995),[5] Pearl 2004 (2002),[15] Pearl 2008 (2006)[16]
  • Azure 2000, Azure 2000 Shadow[5]

The QM500 and Rolacue and derivatives were all designed by Paul Ollett

Current[edit]

Dimmers[edit]

Picture of an Art 2000 Dimmer Rack.
Art 2000 dimmer rack.
Picture of an Art 2000 Power Cube electrical distribution and dimmer unit.
PowerCube dimmer and distribution unit.
  • Art 2000 Dimmer Rack[5]
  • Art 2000i Installation Dimmers[17]
  • Art 2000 PowerCube[17]

Control consoles[edit]

The Pearl 2010 and Pearl Tiger consoles are based on a Motorola 68000 family processor. All other current lighting consoles are based on modern PC hardware and run control software known as Titan.[17]

Picture of an Avolites Pearl Expert lighting control console with touch wing.
Pearl Expert console with additional touchwing.
Picture of an Avolites Tiger Touch lighting control console.
Tiger Touch console.
  • Pearl 2010 (2010), Pearl Tiger[17]
  • Sapphire Touch (2011)[18]
  • Pearl Expert (2006)[19]
  • Tiger Touch[17]
  • Titan Mobile[17]
  • Titan Mobile Wing (2013)
  • Titan One (2012)[17]
  • Tiger Touch Pro
  • Tiger Touch II (2013)
  • Titan Net Processor (2013)
  • Expert Pro
  • Expert Touch

Avolites Media Products[edit]

  • Ai Server Infinity 4/8 (2012)[20]
  • Ai Server T4/8[21]
  • MSC 1 Controller (based on Titan Mobile hardware)[21]
  • Sapphire Media Controller (2012) (based on Sapphire Touch hardware)[22]
  • Sapphire Media Wing (2013).
  • Software dongles[21]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Companies House Webcheck - company number 02578003". Web CHeck. Companies House. Retrieved 7 May 2013. 
  2. ^ "Contact Us". Avolites Website. Avolites Ltd. Retrieved 7 May 2013. 
  3. ^ a b c d e Rushton-Read, Sarah (February 2012). "Avolife, the Universe & Everything". Lighting & Sound International: 64–68. Retrieved 7 May 2013. 
  4. ^ a b "Avolites Ltd appoints two new directors". LsiOnline. Lighting & Sound International. Retrieved 8 May 2013. 
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k "The Avolites Technical Appendix". Avolites Website. Avolites Ltd. Retrieved 17 May 2013. 
  6. ^ "Avolites History". Avolites Website. Avolites Ltd. Retrieved 15 August 2013. 
  7. ^ Baldwin, Colin. 30 YEAR HISTORY OF ROCK LIGHTING AND SOUND IN AUSTRALIA.. Colin Baldwin Consulting. p. 9. 
  8. ^ a b "Profiles - a light-hearted look at industry personalities - Steve Warren". etnow. Entertainment Technology Press Ltd. Retrieved 7 May 2013. 
  9. ^ Moody, James L (2010). Concert Lighting: Techniques, Art and Business. Oxford: Elsevier Inc. ISBN 9780240806891. 
  10. ^ a b "Interview - Dave Green". Lighting and Sound International: 82. July 2013. Retrieved 16 July 2013. 
  11. ^ "Avolites Media’s Prolight + Sound Debut". Entertainments Technology News on the Web. 28 Mar 2012. Retrieved 14 May 2013. 
  12. ^ "PLASA 2012: Avolites Media showcases Sapphire". LsiOnline. Lighting & Sound International. Retrieved 8 May 2013. 
  13. ^ "Avolites Controls Pixel Seats at Olympics Ceremonies". Projection, Lights and Staging News. Timeless Communications, Las Vegas. Retrieved 8 May 2013. 
  14. ^ Conner, Margery. "London Olympic stadium integrates LEDs, seating for landscape video". Designing with LEDs. Retrieved 8 May 2013. 
  15. ^ Rossington, Ruth. "Avolites launches Pearl 2004". LSi online. PLASA Media. Retrieved 17 May 2013. 
  16. ^ Henry, Chris. "Avolites launches Pearl Expert". LSi online. PLASA Media. Retrieved 17 May 2013. 
  17. ^ a b c d e f g "The Avolites Product Range". Avolites Website. Avolites Ltd. Retrieved 7 May 2013. 
  18. ^ "Avolites To Launch Sapphire Touch At PLASA 2011". Total Production International. Mondiale Publishing. Retrieved 17 May 2013. 
  19. ^ "Avolites launches Pearl Expert at PLASA 2006". Avolites Website. Avolites Ltd. Retrieved 17 May 2013. 
  20. ^ Evans, Jim. "Avolites Media gear up for LDI". LSi online. PLASA Media. Retrieved 17 May 2013. 
  21. ^ a b c "Products". Avolites Media Website. Avolites Media. Retrieved 16 July 2013. 
  22. ^ Evans, Jim. "PLASA 2012: Avolites Media showcases Sapphire". LSi online. PLASA Media. Retrieved 17 May 2013. 

External links[edit]