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Laser F/X On-line Newsletter - Digest

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January, February and March 1999

 Items removed from the on-line Newsletter web pages during the first quarter of 1999.

NOTE: Links on destination sites are often changed.  We provide the digest pages for archival purposes and the links to external sites were working when the material was originally published but may no longer be working.

What's New

New products and services of interest to lasersts. Submit your new product information and images in .gif or .jpg format to our E-mail or contact us.

DMX Light

DMX light is designed for the light jockey, who has a computer, and wishes to use a parallel port DMX interface to control his show. The program allows you to pre-program your scenes and chases and then play them back at the press of a button. It is really easy to use, and within ten minutes you can create a small show. The more advanced user will be able to create a very sophisticated show.
Once the show has been created on the computer screen, DMX commands are generated by an external box that plugs into the parallel port. The software is free while the DMX hardware boxes are moderately priced.

One of the main features is each lighting fixture has a template (control panel). When a fixture is selected the template panel changes to reflect the fixtures attributes such as colours and gobos which are all shown graphically.
While the system is designed primarily for use with DMX controller lighting fixtures, it is possible to create a template to control laser projectors in accordance with the ILDA DMX standard as well as lighting fixtures.

Web: http://wwwwin.wplus.net/pp/multimusic/ContainerE.htm

LOBO announces Modula-5

With the new product line MODULA-5 LOBO introduces a digital and modular expandable laser storage for up to two laser projectors. It combines easy handling, a maximum of operation security and breathtaking new features at an unexpected low price.
MODULA-C5 is a high-performance laser controller, in a price segment which offered so far only common modified multitrack tape recorders. In contrast to conventional solutions the shows for up to two laser projectors are stored with the sound in CD quality on a magneto-optical disk. In combination with an advanced locator concept any desired point of the show  is at your fingertips without any search time. As the MO technology is the most reliable data storage medium on the market, eliminating the problems of worn-out tapes.

The basic version is able to play laser shows with over 16 Million colours. Up to four pre-definable show frames and up to 32 adjustable positions of external effect mirrors are automatically integrated in any show. As known from all other LOBO systems, the MODULA-C5 certainly does not need the easily wearing- out mechanics of beam tables. So the system can be combined with any desired LOBO projector.
Thanks to its modular concept, MODULA-C5 can adapt to new tasks by various expansion modules. This makes MODULA-C5 not only extremely flexible, it also guarantees its users a high value for the future. In addition to an expansion module for a second projector, a live operation module with MIDI control and sound-to-light system is at your disposal. A recorder module allows to store own shows on disk. The editing module even allows to create your own laser graphics and to integrate it in any show. For more sophisticated applications a DDL-module, a DMX-module, a SMPTE-module and modules for the control of peripheral equipment are available.
The new MODULA-C5 is reasonably priced, which makes this device the only real alternative for the professional user. The basic version will cost less than DEM 20.000 (about $12.000 US$) and will be available at the end of April this year.

For more information contact:

LOBO electronic GmbH
Hofackerstrasse 13
D-73430 Aalen/Germany
Phone  (++49) (0) 7361 96 87-0 Fax (++49) (0) 7361 96 87-99
http://www.lobo.de  E-Mail     E-Mail   mail@lobo.de

Pangolin announces Lasershow Performer Console

Now any Pangolin user can play laser show cues live, using a professional-grade console: Lasershow Performer. LP is designed and manufactured by Lasscan, and is available exclusively from Pangolin dealers world-wide.
It works with the Lasershow Designer software, to extend the software-only Live! controller. The LP console is perfect for clients such as discos, who prefer playing from a dedicated "button box" rather than a computer keyboard.
Lasershow Performer has nine banks of 48 cue buttons, for a total of 432 cues. The cues themselves are set up in advance using the Live! program. Cues are highly flexible. Each cue can be a frame or animation, still or scrolling text, or any part of a Showtime show. The cues also can trigger TTL outputs
for control of beams or other external devices.
For more information about the Lasershow Performer CLICK HERE.


The award-winning CATWEAZLE LC II scanning systems are available now! Beginning Monday 15 March 1999, MediaLas (Germany) will begin shipping these units. Here are the new features of the scanning systems:

  • Increased speed. Now up to 30k ILDA at 10 degrees optical.
  • Increased linearity
  • Much more accurate
  • Driver has switch for 115/230VAC on board
  • All inputs/outputs are on a single 10pin connector
  • Every axis has inverting jumpers on board
  • Driver size is the same as before
  • Mounting holes are the same as before
  • Weight is the same as before

Thanks to Bill Benner of Pangolin Laser Systems, there are only two pots for adjusting the galvos. It is very simple to find the best settings. MediaLas also solved a problem with the mirrors inside the galvos. The thermal stability is much better now thus laser divergence is decreased.
You can place your orders directly from
MediaLas Germany (Europe) or from our distributors in the US

New Laserist ?

Cameron Garbos, a bouncing baby boy, was born to Derek and Martine of New Wave Productions - at 04:25 on Wednesday the 10th Feb., at St-Justines hospital in Montreal weighing in at a healthy 7.5 lbs. Congratulations to the Garbos family!

1999 Rockwell Laser Industries Calendar

The 1999 Rockwell Laser Industries course calendar is now available. Laserists may be interested in the L-110, L-120, L-220 courses but most especially A-220 the Safety of Lasers Outdoors. This course is offered once a year. This year it will be offered October 20-22 in Orlando, Florida. Hopefully the ANSI Z136.6 will be complete at this time.
Basics of Lasers and Optics
May 11-12
June 8-9
July 13-14**
Aug. 24-25
Oct. 12-13
Nov. 9-10
Dec. 7-8
Washington, D.C.
Ottawa, Ontario, CA
San Francisco
San Antonio (Espanol)
Industrial Laser Safety
Mar. 25-26
May 13-14
June 10-11
July 15-16**
Aug. 26-27
Oct. 14-15
Nov. 11-12
Dec. 9-10
Washington, D.C.
Ottawa, Ontario, CA
San Francisco
San Antonio (Espanol)
Laser Safety Officer
Feb. 8-12
April 19-23
July 19-23
Nov. 15-19
San Francisco
Advanced Laser Safety Officer
June 22-25 Cincinnati $1495*
Laser Machine Tool Design
April 15-16
Fall '99 TBA
Non-Ionizing Radiation (R-280)
(SAVE! Take in conjunction with L-120 Mar. 25-26 for $1195)
Mar. 22-24 Phoenix $940
Fundamentals of Medica Laser Equipment
Feb. 24
July 7
Oct. 27
San Francisco
Medical Laser Safety Officer
Feb. 25-26
July 8-9
Oct. 28-29
San Francisco
Medical Laser Safety Refresher and Z136.3 Update
Feb. 27
July 10
Oct 30
San Francisco
$205 #
Medical Laser Maintenance and Safety Workshop
Feb. 18-20
May 13-15
Sept. 30, Oct 1-2

* Includes LAZAN for Dos
** Sponsored by Director Land Equipment Manager, Canadian Dept. National Defence
*** Save!! Take the M-110 and the M-132 for $795
# $50.00 charge for the ANSI Z136.3 Standard

INFO: For more info and on-line registration, call 1-800-94-LASER, visit http://www.rli.com/rli_inst.html or send E-mail to courses@rli.com

World Scan

Laser display happenings from around the world. If you would like your show or installation information here, please E-mail to our E-mail or contact us 

Arthur Schawlow dead at 77

Arthur Schawlow, co-inventor of the laser and a Nobel Prize winner, died Wednesday in Stanford, California from pneumonia and congestive heart failure after a long battle with leukaemia. He was 77 years of age.
Schawlow was born in Mount Vernon, New York, and went on to attend the University of Toronto, graduating with a bachelor's degree in physics and mathematics in 1941. During the W.W.II, while teaching physics to military personnel at the U of T, he earned his master's degree. In 1949, Schawlow received his Ph.D. in physics from the University of Toronto. While doing postdoctoral research at Columbia University he met Charles Townes, and their long collaboration on microwave spectroscopy and masers, the forunner of the laser, began.
Schawlow and Townes were seeking ways to extend the maser principle of amplifying electromagnetic waves into the shorter wavelengths of infrared and visible light. They published a proposal for the laser in a 1958 issue of Physical Review and received a patent for it in 1960.
In 1961, Schawlow became professor of physics at Stanford University. It was in 1981 that Schawlow received the Nobel Prize in physics for his work in laser spectroscopy.

Photons Illuminate Future Cars
By: L. Michael Roberts

Toronto - The Canadian Auto Show in Toronto is the largest in Canada attracting an estimated audience of 2.5 million people over it’s 10 day run. This year’s edition, the last in the 20th century, was billed as "The Show Of The Century". In keeping with this theme, organisers mounted a large display of futuristic and concept cars ­ from solar powered cars to electric, alternate fuel and plastic vehicles.

To add to the futuristic atmosphere of this display, FFP Laser Systems of Mississauga was contracted to provide a laser and multi-media show.  The large display hall was the last area for visitors to pass through before exiting the Auto Show.  FFP provided a European style laser show with beams and graphics, DMX controlled moving lights and traditional lights along with sound and video enhancements (see technical sidebar below).
The show ran whenever a number of visitors had congregated in the hall to see the exhibit.  This meant running and average of 6 shows per hour, twelve hours per day for the 10 day exhibition.  Prior to the show, a laser graphic flashed onto the overhead projection screen advising visitors that the best vantage point was in the centre of the hall.  This was followed by a superbly choreographed beam and graphic show set to the song "Children" by Robert Miles.
The show incorporated dual scanner heads with 16.7 million colour audience scanned beam effects, a single 30k head for graphics, and another pair of scan heads for monochromatic-blue audience scan effects.  After the laser show, a short video on the automotive industry in Ontario was projected onto the screen before the lights came up again so visitors could admire the cars.

Gobos from intelligent light fixtures were used creatively as "screen filler" between shows, and as background effects with laser graphics projections.   Between shows, intense dark blue beams were projected from the laser position onto slowly rotating mirrored cylinders at the back of the hall to produce a "searchlight" effect.  The unique blue was produced by placing a dicro in front of the output of a 171 argon laser and rotating it to "tune" for the desired shade of blue.

Technical sidebar

Forty Eight watts of lasers were used to generate the photons for the show. The system configuration used as the Auto Show was as follows:

  • 1 - Cambridge Laser Labs 171 Argon laser with blue dichro and FFP custom rail type beam table projector - for laser "searchlights" and static beam effects bounced from an extensive mirror array, and complementary audience scanning from two 12k scan heads.
  • 2 - Cambridge Laser Labs 171 lasers, one argon and one krypton, feeding an FFP custom rail projector with 2 NEOS eight-channel PCAOMs. A TurboTrack scan system tuned to 30K with UGC was used for laser graphics onto the main screen, while the 8-turret/16-beam projector provided a rich, colourful static beam array.
  • The tandem pair also fed two MediaLas fibre optic remote projectors with CTI 6800 30k scanners for the scanned beam effects.
  • Laser show control was from two Pangolin LD Pro graphics systems via two FFP custom control consoles to the MediaLas scan heads, main graphics head and beam table controllers.
  • Graphics and beam programming by Dave Nash involved 750 frames and over 1000 cues in the 4 minute presentation.
  • An MDG MAX3000 provided a light haze to enhance the beam effects.
  • Additional equipment included 56 bounce mirrors and 16 mirror balls to create the beam arrays; CD player, mixer, equaliser, amp racks and speakers; A Spark DMX lighting console controlling dimmer racks for the traditional "Par Can" type spotlight banks on each car, as well as 16 Cyberlight intelligent lighting fixtures mounted at various locations for "screen filler" and lighting effects.
  • An additional bank of 8 Mac600 and 12 Cyberlight intelligent lighting fixtures were floor mounted around the edge of the room and programmed to display custom gobos with manufacturers and sponsors logos on the ceiling of the room between shows.

FFP Laser Systems on the web: www.ffplasers.com

Laservision MacroMedia International Business Asia Award Finalists for the Third Year!

Laservision Macro~Media, current holder of the 1998 International Business Asia Award for the "Best Use of Australian Technology in Asia" has made the finals of this prestigious international business award for the third consecutive year.
The Sydney based event and attraction developer internationally recognised for their 2000 Olympic Bid laser display on the sails of the Sydney Opera House, and many of Australasia's most high profile Macro~Media presentations.  This creative and innovative Australian enterprise co-ordinates ''Macro~Media'' high impact attractions and events, integrating lighting, fountains, pyrotechnics, Aqua-Screens, audio, and motion pictures in addition to 3D-laser animation and dazzling special effects with their proprietary performance technology.
The diversity of creative applications or the companies technology is reflected in their recent "Arabian Christmas" performance in Hong Kong comprised of laser graphics, effects and animation synchronised to a powerful contemporary sound track and projected on the large exterior walls of "The Whampoa", a landmark retail and restaurant complex built in the form of a large ocean liner.  This followed a series of High profile Hong Kong concerts featuring international recording stars Julian Lennon, Boys to Men and 'Canto-Pop' Diva Sammie.
The Australian Deputy Prime Minister Tim Fischer commenting on the company's accomplishments said, "It's hard to imagine a better advertisement for Australia's ability to supply innovative and complex technological solutions".
Laservision Macro~Media has extended their international marketing effort to the Internet, their extensive web site can be found at

20/20 airs "laser weapons" segment

On Wednesday, 10 February 1999, the ABC News program "20/20" aired a report entitled "Weapons of the Future". One part of this segment was an interview with an intelligence officer, Jack Daly, who says he was injured by a laser projected from the Russian ship "Kapitan Man" into the helicopter he was photographing from on April 4 1997.
A transcript from the 20/20 show is available from the ABC news shows web site at http://www.abcnews.go.com/onair/2020/transcripts/2020_990210weapons_trans.html

Image of alleged laser (red dot on left)

For the Pentagon report on the "Kapitan Man" incident, including the photo of the freighter showing the alleged laser beam, visit the DefenceLINK site at http://www.defenselink.mil/photos/Jun1997/970404-N-0000N-001.html

Laserist Ties the knot

Miss Michele Lee Sivertson
Mr. Robert John Mudryk

Will celebrate their Wedding on the eighth of January, nineteen hundred and ninety-nine at seven o’clock in the Evening at The Holiday Inn, 1100 Crocker Road, Westlake, Ohio. The reception will be held at The Westlake Holiday Inn from 7pm to midnight. There will be an open bar in that time period. They will have a DJ for entertainment, and maybe even Lasers.

DISCLAIMER: Some of the information in the Backstage area is provided by the persons or companies named on the relevant page(s). Laser F/X does NOT endorse or recommend any products/services and is NOT responsible for the technical accuracy of the information provided.  We provide this information as a service to laserists using the Backstage area. 

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