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IBC premiere for the IP-based AVATUS mixing console with multitouch screens

Amsterdam/Netherlands, September 2017: STAGETEC, the Berlin-based manufacturer of professional audio technology, presents for the first time at IBC the new IP mixing console AVATUS with trend-setting technology and contemporary look & feel. AVATUS differs from the previous STAGETEC consoles by three innovations: AVATUS offers IP-based connectivity to audio processing. In addition, AVATUS features 21"-sized multitouch screens for display and operating functions. The third change concerns the operating philosophy, which is no longer technically oriented. In the AVATUS, STAGETEC relies on workflow-oriented operation in which the touch screens only ever display the currently relevant, context-related functions.

"AVATUS was developed to meet our customers' demands for IP-based technology that opens up to standardized protocols. AVATUS is very flexible in terms of what customers want. The customization of the user interface and its functions has been greatly simplified, allowing AVATUS to be adapted for customers in broadcast, theater and live applications," comments Dr. Helmut Jahne, Managing Director of STAGETEC.

Flexible mixing console interface

The IP-based connectivity of AVATUS offers new possibilities for building infrastructures. In the process, the term mixing console surface is completely redefined. Whereas the modules were previously arranged relatively rigidly in a configuration, in AVATUS each module is a participant in a network. Each module recognizes its position in the mixing console and is configured and supplied with parameters accordingly. The modules can be removed from the interface, freely configured and installed anywhere within the network. This creates a distributed system that enables remote productions.

The user interface in the AVATUS will consist of only three different types of cartridges; there will be no central cartridges. This allows multiple users to work on one console at different locations.

Multitouch screens with great potential for displays and operation

The decentralized mode of operation is supported by the multitouch screens, each of which allows access to all parameters and central audio processing functions. This, coupled with a sophisticated touch-based operating concept, opens up new dimensions. A new UI/UX design has been developed for the multitouch screens, ensuring convenient operation by the user. The web-based remote UI enables the display and operation of parameters via a web browser, as already known from STAGETEC's ON AIR Flex.

Effective work with new and proven features

A new feature is the color coding of functional units. It supports the user and allows a fast, intuitive way of working. The color coding, which is implemented via LEDs in each encoder, indicates which function the encoder is currently assigned to. The faders are also color-coded, ensuring a quick overview in large projects. AVATUS provides more than 800 input channels and 128 summing buses. The width of the channel formats ranges from mono to 7.1. Features such as the DeEsser as audio module, loudness metering and the STAGETEC automixer are integrated into the operation. The size of AVATUS varies between 12 and 96 control strips. Like all STAGETEC mixing consoles, AVATUS is integrated into the NEXUS audio network and offers all interfaces that NEXUS also supports. Thus, AVATUS guarantees the same excellent audio quality as STAGETEC's previous mixing consoles. AVATUS relies on standardized technologies and protocols. This increases controllability by third-party devices and their integration. Connectivity to and from other systems will be further increased by implementing the AES70 standard.

AVATUS in best STAGETEC tradition

Based on these basic pillars of the concept, AVATUS, like its predecessors, is to be continuously developed further. With its flexibility, the new console has the potential to meet all challenges of the future. AVATUS continues the tradition of STAGETEC products and is downward compatible. Users with an AURUS in a NEXUS audio network can make a step-by-step evolution towards AVATUS.

AVATUS is currently still in the pre-production model phase. Until it is as reliable in operation as STAGETEC is accustomed to, the developers still have to avoid some pitfalls. The first product version of AVATUS will be available in 2018.

"A period of upheaval is evident in the industry right now. Similar to how the basic concepts of mixing consoles and control rooms in general completely changed back then during the switch from analog to digital technology, we see this today due to IP networking and the development towards remote productions," sums up Dr. Helmut Jahne. "The next period remains exciting!"


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