IBC 2018 show preview

This year’s annual International Broadcasting Convention (IBC) opens its doors at the RAI in Amsterdam today (13 September 2018).

Last year’s annual media, entertainment and technology spectacle saw 57,669 people from 170 countries visit around 1,735 exhibitors in the Dutch capital’s RAI conference centre, with this year’s event expected to welcome an equally sizeable global attendance base.

The 2018 event is set to showcase “big advances” in the latest developments in the likes of artificial intelligence, 5g and blockchain technology according to IBC CEO Michael Crimp.

“It may be an odd thing to say, in a technological industry, but it is not the technologies themselves that are exciting,” he says. “Certainly there are big things happening. I think we will see big advances in areas like artificial intelligence, 5G and blockchain.

“The real excitement comes when these raw technologies are put into action. IBC puts these ideas in front of people who can imagine the possibilities and create the applications that transform our creativity and our business models.”

Crimp says that IBC’s content offering is kept fresh each year “by listening” and that “IBC is organised by the industry for the industry”.

“Through bodies like our content steering group and the IBC Council we get input from those, around the world, who are leading the industry today,” he adds.

The IBC CEO’s advice on how to make the most of the event is to “immerse yourself in the whole experience, drop into conference sessions that interest you and go to the awards ceremony to see what the really innovative people are achieving today”.

“Above all, talk to people,” he concludes. “Share your knowledge and experiences. We are expecting more than 57,00 people this year, so seize the opportunity to be a part of the big global debate.”

In addition to the wide range of talks and seminars, here is a small selection of the product showcases you can expect to see at this year’s event:

Sennheiser will showcase its Memory Mic professional wireless microphone for smartphones at stand No. D50 in Hall 8. The new mic features a high-quality Sennheiser condenser capsule with omni-directional pick-up pattern. Via the app, the sensitivity of the microphone can be set at three levels in order to adapt to louder or softer voices. “High sound quality remains an important area for differentiation and a hallmark of quality for video content. Currently, there is no other product on the market that is able to compete with the Memory Mic and offer the same fantastic combination of audio quality, price and mobility,” says Tobias von Allwoerden, senior product manager, Professional Audio at Sennheiser.

Nugen Audio’s newly released post-production bundles as well as updates to its Loudness Toolkit bundle of products will be on display for the first time at IBC 2018 (Stand 8.D56). The Loudness Toolkit, which includes the VisLM loudness meter, ISL limiter and LM-Correct quick fix tool, will natively support track counts of up to 7.1.2, suitable for monitoring and limiting Dolby Atmos bed tracks in real time. “Following the introduction of updated ITU guidance for the measurement of multi-channel audio beyond 5.1, NUGEN will update its Loudness Toolkit family of products in order to enhance the workflow for engineers in the industry,” says Jon Schorah, founder and creative director, NUGEN Audio

Calrec Audio is giving its widely used Brio audio console a boost in channel count and will be demonstrating Brio at this year’s IBC on stand 8.C61.New expansion packs are now available that increase the Brio12 DSP count from 48 to 64 input channels and the Brio36 from 64 to 96 input channels. “Calrec’s range of Brio consoles has proved to be very popular,” said Dave Letson, VP of sales for Calrec. “With its small form factor, broadcast-focused feature set and affordable price point, Brio is incredibly versatile and the consoles are now suitable for applications requiring a larger channel count. We’ve made the range more powerful to accommodate the expanding needs of broadcasters.”

In conjunction with its Dutch distributor Amptec, DPA will exhibit and demonstrate a range of microphones that reflect the company’s “core values of clarity, durability and consistency”. A highlight will be DPA’s recently launched CORE by DPA amplifier technology that powers its line of d:screet miniature microphones, among others.

Jünger Audio is exhibiting at IBC 2018 on the same booth (10.A49) that it has occupied for the last five years and will be demonstrating a new audio processing solution called flexAI that it claims will “redefine how broadcasters approach their audio processing requirements”. FlexAi (Flexible Audio Insfrastructure) enables a range of audio applications to be implemented without hardware or rack space constraints. By buying additional software licenses, broadcasters and post-production facilities can customize this versatile system to suite their demand for processing capabilities and channel count.

RTW will present its new MA4U 19-inch TM9 Rack-Mount Solution, which provides all the audio monitoring features of a standalone RTW TM9 in an easily accessible broadcast studio format. The company will also discuss the forthcoming availability of floating licenses for its Masterclass Plug-ins – Mastering Tools, Continuous Loudness Control (CLC) and Loudness Tools.