We’ve got a small black box theatre in our performing arts academy. Last year, we went digital for sound, replacing a Yamaha analogue board with a Behringer X32 and couldn’t be happier. Its performance is excellent for what we need, durability is fine and it’s cheap to replace or hire in. Motorized faders and scribble strips are two features that are exceptionally useful.
This year, we’re looking at adding some LED movers to augment our 48 conventional fixtures (currently controlled by an ETC Smartfade 24/96) so I’ve been looking at new control alternatives. We do a collection of traditional stack-based theatre and shows that require busking as well. I’ve looked at ETC Colorsource, Chamsys QuickQ and MagicQ, Zero88 FLX, LightFactory for a solution that wouldn’t break our bank. Onyx with a control surface (M-Touch probably) is looking like the winner.
I’m curious as to product roadmap. It seems to me that if Obsidian were to enhance M-Touch / Play series with dynamic scribble strips instead of blank buttons it would be a market leading development. Needing additional physical controls would simply mean buying more surfaces. One could in effect build out the kit incrementally to compete with virtually any desk out there.
BTW, the reason scribble strips are so useful is that as a teaching theatre shows can change from night to night. Being able to have the show file control the labels on the boards (like our X32 does) is a huge advantage.
Obsidian might want to think of this before someone like Behringer decides to disrupt the lighting control market as they have with digital soundboards.