Tech to watch

Products that will change the moviegoing experience

A sampling of some of the products on display at ShoWest that will change your moviegoing experience:

LED (Light Emitting Diode) Signs
by Billboard Video
This product might just put the movie poster trade out of business. Tired of static print ads? Look no farther: LED signs combine video and computer graphics, giving inhouse theater promotions a sleeker look. LED signs also are able to animate and separate the characters seen in a standard studio movie poster. The sign interfaces with a variety of computer systems, and — rest assured, theater owners — it’s user friendly. Unlike a television, an LED sign can stay on 24/7, 365 days a year and never burn up or burn out. Billboard Video has built the majority of LED signs in Times Square, including those at the ABC Television building. They are available in all sizes, from poster to billboard.

Screen Talk
by Dolby Laboratories
Also known as the “revolution in subtitling” or a “post-production exec’s best friend.” Rather than spend tons of money subtitling prints for overseas distribution, Screen Talk puts subtitles on the screen without the need for extra prints. While the system covers all languages, the studio preprograms a film’s subtitles on a digital file and sends this to the exhibitor, who then installs it on Screen Talk. Screen Talk also syncs to a pic’s Dolby Digital soundtrack, so the appropriate translations aren’t appearing at inappropriate times.

DW-7000 Digital Projector
by Panasonic
Is there a lot of equipment up in your projection room? Well, the DW-7000 — which Panasonic is billing as the smallest and lightest digital projector on the market — won’t take up that much space. Unlike other projectors which are air-cooled, the DW-7000 is liquid-cooled, reducing the unit’s noise and power drainage. DW-7000 projects up to 600 inches. Additional projectors can be added to accommodate greater screen sizes.

D20 Digital Network Crossover Monitor
by THX
In an effort to move exhibitors closer to a network management model, the D20 manages an entire cinema’s sound system. One of D20’s intelligent attributes is its ability to flag future sound difficulties that might arise. Technicians will be able to monitor an auditorium’s speaker configuration through a Web-based interface. Touting a 28-bit digital signal processing technology, the D20 offers a greater range than 100 decibels, giving more of kick to an action movie soundtrack.

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