Welcome to the Q-Sys Newsletter - September 2011.
by Dale Sandberg
Sr. Product Manager
QSC Audio Products, LLC.
A free newsletter providing feature announcements, notable installations, and other commentary on Q-Sys™.
New Q-Sys Hardware:We recently introduced the I/O-22, Core 250i, and Core 500i which will all be available in April/May. These new products provide incredible value and make Q-Sys more accessible for everyday applications.
The I/O-22 is a small PoE I/O peripheral that provides two Mic/Line Inputs, two Line Outputs and one Speaker Output. Designed to fit into tight spaces, the I/O-22 also offers GPIO and RS-232 and comes with a wall/table mount bracket that keeps it securely in place.
The Core 500i is one of two new Cores that offer the functionality of the larger Q-Sys Server Cores with more on-board I/O. The Core 500i provides eight rear panel card slots and will support systems of up to 128 network audio channels.
The Core 250i is a "smaller" version of the Core 500i offering the same eight back panel card slots with up to 64 channels of Q-LAN network audio streaming.
Version 2.3 -What's New?
New Q-Sys Hardware:New Q-Sys hardware includes an I/O Card and a Touch Screen peripheral. there is also a change in the I/O card connection.
Adds CobraNet capability to Q-Sys. You can install the card in the Core (up to 32 input, and 32 output channels) or an I/O Frame (up to 16 input, and 16 output channels).
TSC-3 Touch Screen Controller
The TSC-3 is a network enabled,3-inch, capacitive touchscreen control panel. The TSC-3 is PoE powered. You can create User Control Interfaces (UCI) in Q-Sys Designer for use with the TSC-3.
Type 2 Hardware
Type 2 hardware provides new cables and connectors between the I/O cards and main boards in Cores and I/O Frames. Due to this change, the Type 2 hardware is not physically compatible with the older hardware. You can still integrate the new I/O Frames and Cores in the same system with older hardware, but the I/O cards are not interchangeable. Type 2 hardware can be identified by a yellow label on the back of the Core and I/O Frame, and the bottom of the I/O cards.
New Software Components:
Q-Sys Designer V2.3 adds several new software components in the Schematic Library (Audio Components, Control Components), and in the Inventory.
The Control Link component allows you to link controls from different designs running on Cores on the same Q-LAN network. Control linking works on a server / client basis. You can have one server, and many clients. The server and client(s) are identified by the Direction, and linked based on the Link Name given to them in the components properties. You place a server Control Link in one design, and the client Control Link in the other, both configured with the same controls. The server advertises the Name, and the client discovers the server by the Name. Once the two are linked, the controls are linked and follow whichever one changes. If a control has a different value in the client than the value in the server, the control in the server takes precedence.
Layout ComponentsClean Screen Button
The Clean Screen Button is designed for the TSC-3 and the TSC-8 Touchscreens. Drag this button from the Schematic Library into your UCI design for either touchscreen, when pressed, the screen displays a 30-second timer with the touch capability disabled. This allows time to clean the screen.
Log Off Button
The Log Off Button is designed for the TSC-3 and the TSC-8 Touchscreens. Drag this button from the Schematic Library into your UCI design for either touchscreen, when pressed, the current user is logged off. You must have Require User Logon in the UCI Properties (Q-Sys Administrator) set to Yes in order to use this button.
TimecodeSMPTE LTC Reader Component (BETA)
The Timecode Reader component reads and decodes a SMPTE linear timecode signal. The Control Pins of the Timecode Reader typically connect to a Control Script component for use with an appropriate Lua script to trigger events at a specific time (Hours, Minutes, Seconds, Frames, Time) in the timecode signal.
SMPTE LTC Generator Component (BETA)
The Timecode Generator component generates a SMPTE linear timecode signal. The Control Pins of the Timecode Generator typically connect to a Control Script component for use with an appropriate Lua script to control the generator.
The CobraNet card component is available for selection in a Core or an I/O Frame. After selection, you can place the CobraNet component in the Schematic and select the desired number of channels. The I/O Frame can have 4 x 4, 8 x 8, or 16 x 16 inputs/outputs. The Core can have the same, and in addition, can have 32 x 32 inputs/outputs. The maximum number of inputs/outputs an I/O Frame can have is 16 x 16 regardless of the type of I/O cards installed.
The TSC-3 is a network enabled capacitive touchscreen control panel, connecting to a Q-Sys system via Q-LAN to provide system managers and/or end users with remote management capabilities of their Q-Sys system. Since the TSC-3 does not provide low latency un-compressed audio services, these products can join a Q-LAN network via standard 10/100 Mbps Ethernet connections.
The TSC-3 has a 3.5", 4:3 (320 x 240) color graphics display with a 240 nit LCD. The control surface is a capacitive touch interface that is reliable, bright, and easy to use. The TSC-3 is powered by IEEE 802.3AF power over Ethernet (PoE) on a 10/100 Mbps connection.
TSC-3 has a flexible mounting system that allows mounting to the surface of a wall or podium, mounting in a wall with a standard U.S. 2-gang electrical wall box (new construction and old construction), and mounting in a wall by itself.
Perched on a rocky promontory high above this small northern Italian town, Forte di Bard (Fort Bard) has been a site of strategic significance since the pre-Roman era. Today its importance is cultural rather than military. Completely restored in 2006, the stunning courtyards of this fortress complex now play host to theatre and ballet performances, summer pop concerts and literary events, while its imposing walls house major touring exhibitions of art and photography, as well as permanent collections like the Museo delli Alpi (Museum of the Alps).
Forte di Bard - Italy
The historic Forte di Bard recently opened its high-tech multimedia museum here, spanning more than 20 rooms, and featuring state-of-the art audio visual presentations, touch screens and interactive experiences for the visitor, all controlled by the recently installed Q-Sys Integrated System Platform.
The latest step in the on-going expansion of the Fort is the new museum dedicated to the history of the site and the evolution of its fortifications. This state-of-the-art interactive multimedia exhibition features synchronized audio-visual presentations delivered via conventional video screens, interactive touch-screens and video projection. This extremely sophisticated installation called for a multimedia control system that could coordinate all the audio and video as well as the lighting and more, across the various rooms and display systems.
IBR Sistemi of Genoa handled the design and installation of the new museum, and with the help of AudioLink, QSC's exclusive distributor in Italy, they chose Q-Sys as the perfect solution to control the advanced technological needs of the Forte di Bard.
Every element of the Forte di Bard exhibition is controlled by Q-Sys. At the center of the network, a QSys Core 3000 unit handles 68 channels of audio and controls a total of 125 peripheral devices, ranging from the touch screens and their associated computers to video players, video screens and projectors. Additional Q-Sys I/O Frames equipped with DataPort I/O cards allow centralized control of the CX Series amplifiers located all around the exhibition. Meanwhile, the I/O Frames' GPIO ports allow the Q-Sys Core to directly control the lighting system and the motorized screens used for larger video projections. And by connecting a second Q-Sys 3000 Core to the network, the installers were able to ensure complete system redundancy and offer the guarantee of no disruption.
Making any alterations to the existing historic structure was obviously out of the question. AcousticDesignâ„˘ Series AD-S32T and AD-S52 loudspeakers proved ideal for the scenario. Delivering high-quality sound in a robust, compact package, they were easily mounted on lightweight frames suspended from the ceiling. Where further sound reinforcement was required, AD-S28Tw subwoofers were discreetly deployed. The Q-Sys Designer software design environment made assembling this sophisticated network a stress-free experience. The completely modular nature of the Q-Sys control system and I/O peripherals made it easy to accommodate the necessary hardware within the space available. And with the audio delivery hardware in place, the system was easily fine-tuned in situ via a wireless remote control.
Claudio Donato of IBR Sistemi said: "We are very happy to have used QSC technology on this project. It all comes together as a true system. In particular, we've found Q-Sys to be an extremely powerful and flexible platform -easy to integrate into our interactive system and very innovative."
Stefano Cantadori, head of AudioLink, adds: "Q-Sys is incredibly flexible. With the two QSC Cores in place, we can now put I/O in every other zone of the Forte di Bard and build many independent, fully redundant systems. We can connect all those systems together, provide VoIP and audio playback, and control just about any gizmo that can be connected via LAN. It is the future, now. Our customers are only just beginning to realize the full potential of Q-Sys, its ease of expandability and the vast range of applications the system can handle.".
Tips and Tricks Blog:
As mentioned in our last newsletter we have created a Tips and Tricks Blog with helpful information posted by our developers and field application engineers. The Blog is located here: http://media.qscaudio.com/blogs/Q-Sys/
The most recent post is some often neglected but simple ways to speed up designing Q-Sys systems. Pervious posts are on various subjects but always informative. Like most blogs you can comment on the posts and interact directly with the engineers.
Like always if you have a topic you would like to see addressed, an interesting installation you've worked on or a tip you would like to share, please drop me a line at email@example.com.