Zwaag -- One of Germany's most famous cinemas, Schauburg Kino & Theater in Karlsruhe, at the foot of the Black Forest, is one of the few cinemas left in the world which can show 70mm films. As well as being able to accommodate earlier technology it also features the most modern developments, the latest of which is an Alcons Audio system.

Opened in 1927, the cinema's decor has remained essentially the same since a major refurbishment in 1968, which saw a large, curved screen installed and the capability of showing 70mm ‘Todd-AO' format films. As a format that has become a cult favourite amongst cinema enthusiasts, this has ensured that the venue continues to be extremely popular.

But this is not the only reason for its fame. Behind the evocative chandeliers and velvet curtains, an ongoing programme of technical modernisation has seen the latest formats running alongside 70mm screenings. For instance, it was the first cinema in the city to install Digital 2k projection and the ability to show 3-D movies.

And it is not just the visuals that are cutting edge - a recent upgrade to its audio system has seen five Alcons CR4 cinema front systems, tri-amped with ALC2 amplified loudspeaker controllers and SDP processing, installed.

"The previous system was installed in 1992 and was one of the more advanced speaker systems of its time. However, by modern standards the system lacked the proper punch in the upper bass frequency range. The horn reached its limit at higher reproduction levels, resulting in increased distortion and harshness," says Herbert Born, the venue's managing director.

"Both became a problem with demanding newer mixes in uncompressed audio, but also with magnetic 70mm sound tracks when played loudly."

The Schauburg technical team examined a range of options but, being highly satisfied with an Alcons CR1 system installed in the venue's smaller screen, they were 100% confident that the CR4 system would deliver a major improvement in sound to the main house.

(Schauburg / Alcons press cont'd)

Working closely with Alcons Audio Germany's Carsten Albrecht, the system was specified by Gunter Oehme of contractors Filmton und Kinotechnik. It is a unique installation, with the system mounted in bespoke movable towers.

The house has a huge stage which, with the screen removed, is also used for live performances. Because of this, the loudspeakers are mounted in towers that can easily be moved into different positions. This allows them to be used for both cinema showings and live productions.

"As it doesn't have a baffle wall, the stage can cause acoustic problems like excessive reverb if it is excited too much. The Alcons system works very well without a baffle wall and has also made a significant difference to evening out the SPL differences between the front and rear of the theatre," says Herbert.

The versatility of the Alcons system has been clearly demonstrated by the improvement in sound for both film screenings and live productions. Cinema enthusiasts are renowned for their high expectations and the new system has met with universal approval.

"The sound improvement is obvious," Herbert continues. "Overall the sound is much more natural, music really sounds purer on such a high-end system.

"Colouring of the sound and distortion, which are typical for many cinema sound systems - for example when violins are playing - are completely gone. And with high sound levels, it just gets loud, not distorted.

"The sound localization has also greatly improved, due to improved time alignment and better coverage of the auditorium. We are very happy with it."


Read more

LOS ANGELES -- Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Inc. ("MGM") today announced that the company's restructuring has become effective, with exit financing of $500 million in place. The company's "pre-packaged" plan of reorganization (the "Plan") was confirmed on December 2, 2010, by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York.

"MGM is emerging from one of the most challenging periods of its storied history. We are honored and inspired at the opportunity of leading one of Hollywood's most iconic studios into its next generation of unforgettable filmmaking, global television production and distribution, and aggressively pursuing, developing and exploiting new digital entertainment platforms," said Gary Barber and Roger Birnbaum, Co-Chairmen and Chief Executive Officers of MGM. "Beginning today, MGM is a stronger, more competitive company, with a solid financial foundation and a bright future. We look forward to working with MGM's dedicated employees to build upon this company's legacy."

MGM has a significantly improved financial position with secured lenders exchanging approximately $5 billion, including accrued interest and fees, for most of the equity in the company. As part of its exit financing, MGM raised $500 million to fund operations, including production of a new slate of films and television series. JPMorgan arranged MGM exit financing.


Read more

CHICAGO -- NEC Display Solutions of America, a leading provider of commercial LCD display and projector solutions, plans to award a total of $100,000 in NEC products through a series of new contests. Registrants of its innovative Star Student (education), Business Advantage (small-to-medium businesses), Medical+ (healthcare) and Cinema Advantage (theater) programs are each eligible to win $25,000 for their respective facilities.

Besides registering in the NEC marketing program for which it qualifies, each participating organization must complete a registration form and upload a two-to-three-minute video, detailing why its classroom, office, lobby or theater needs a technology makeover. The deadline for photos and video entries is February 28, 2011.

"The makeover phenomenon on television and the Internet has really struck a chord with people, so we wanted to give our valued customers the opportunity to showcase the energy they exhibit each and every day to succeed," said Ashley Flaska, Vice President of Marketing at NEC Display. "Successful organizations put their creative hats on to inspire students, turn prospects into advocates, and assist patients in their respective fields, so we're looking forward to channeling that creativity into some very compelling entries."

The top 5 entries in each marketing program will be chosen by NEC judges and then posted on NEC's website for public voting between March 7, 2011, and March 31, 2011.

Winners will be announced in April 2011. In addition, runners-up in all four categories will each be awarded a 32-inch NEC E321 LCD display for their respective schools, offices, medical facilities or theaters.

For more information on participating, please visit


Read more

Beverly Hills, CA - Two hundred forty-eight feature films are eligible for the 2010 Academy Award® for Best Picture, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced today. To be eligible for 83rd Academy Awards® consideration, feature films must open in a commercial motion picture theater in Los Angeles County by midnight, December 31, and begin a minimum run of seven consecutive days.

Under Academy rules, a feature-length motion picture must have a running time of more than 40 minutes and must have been exhibited theatrically on 35mm or 70mm film, or in a qualifying digital format.

Feature films that receive their first public exhibition or distribution in any manner other than as a theatrical motion picture release are not eligible for Academy Awards in any category.

The 83rd Academy Awards nominations will be announced live on Tuesday, January 25, 2011, at 5:30 a.m. PT in the Academy's Samuel Goldwyn Theater. Academy Awards for outstanding film achievements of 2010 will be presented on Sunday, February 27, 2011, at the Kodak Theatre.


Read more

Subscribe to Articles Feed