News

10 Jan 2022

Power to The People

by Jason Allen

“Unify, Connect, Empower” is the motto of Melbourne manufacturing start-up ONEStage, a company dedicated to keeping the show going at the source – power and signal. With a product line of locally made ruggedised and road-ready power and signal distro, ONEStage is on a mission to banish consumer power equipment from our stages forever.

Starting his career in the electrical trades industry, founder of ONEStage Lachlan Elmore moved into the audio world, working as a stage and systems tech. He personally experienced (and was blamed for) failures on stage caused by ‘showstoppers’; the humble domestic powerboard. He knew there had to be a better way.

One of the first products off the ONEStage assembly line was the ONEStage SPD-T1au, a five-outlet unit designed to replace the average powerboard. It has IP rated locking input and throughput connectors capable of 16A at 240VAC, with one outlet rotated 90 degrees to accommodate plug-packs. It comes in a ruggedised aluminium enclosure, is truss mountable, and has a recessed rocker switch to prevent nuisance tripping. This is not a product you can buy at Kmart.

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ONEStage have recently partnered with Event Communications Australia to distribute their products. “ONEStage products excite me because they remind me of the good old days when people built stuff properly,” says Rod McKinnon, director of Event Communications Australia. “Their gear is rock solid, super reliable, and designed and built by people from our industry. Most importantly, it solves a problem. The powerboard is the biggest showstopper in the world. If you’re a professional, you shouldn’t be using $11 powerboards from Bunnings on a stage. Lachlan has done the gigs, and knows that stage techs will get something thrown at them by some rockstar when something fails. ONEStage are making the tools that the events industry needs to just get on with it.”

ONEStage are also responsive to customer requests. If you don’t find what you need in their extensive line of power and signal solutions for audio, lighting, and video, get in touch and start the conversation about solving your problems.

Event Communications Australia are on a mission to solve problems in the event industry, with the biggest and most obvious problem of the day being COVID. While restrictions are receding in the Eastern states, the new normal of COVID safe protocols is likely to be with us for years. So, how do we keep our stages virus free?

Enter the Li.LAC UVC microphone disinfector. The Li.LAC resembles a futuristic sandwich grill in a robust, road-ready 19” 3U rackmount unit. You simply place the microphones on the stainless steel grille, close the drawer, and press start. The Li.LAC can accommodate up to three handheld mics at a time and can also disinfect headsets and lapel mics. The Li.LAC is laboratory certified to kill 99.99% of viruses and bacteria.

The Li.LAC was created by Tobi Hoff, German-based sound technician and electrical engineer, who was also responsible for the TEQSAS line array and loudspeaker measurement system. In Germany’s long lockdown, Tobi dedicated his time to figuring out how to get the industry working safely again and took on all the design and certification necessary to get the Li.LAC to market.

“The level of trouble Tobi went to for the Li.LAC is amazing,” relates Rod McKinnon. “He took microphones from multiple manufacturers, loaded them up with a viral load in a biomedical lab, ran them through the Li.LAC, and then completely destroyed the mics in a centrifuge in order to measure the viral load. It was 99.99% gone, which is amazing, and is as good as any form of disinfection gets.”

The Li.LAC’s arrival in Australia and New Zealand is timely as we start returning to stages for summer. Rod hopes its adoption will not only keep performers and crew safe but save on time and equipment too. “Wiping down a mic’s head capsule doesn’t get into the foam underneath,” observes Rod. “And let’s assume properly cleaning a mic takes three minutes. The Li.LAC’s UVC lamps are rated to run 4,000 cycles. That’s 12,000 mics cleaned, and a saving of 600 hours of labour. There’s also the damage to the mics from isopropyl alcohol wipes to consider. I spoke to a customer recently who’s wiping down lapel mics twice a day and the plastic is falling away from the cables. If you’re wiping mics, you’re degrading plastic and grilles. Tobi and the team at LAC Labs have put mics through 4,000 cycles of UVC and taken photos of any material breakdown. Their results show that the effects of UV-C are negligible compared to the normal wear and tear on a mic over its life.”

Event Communications Australia are distributing both ONEStage and Li.LAC in Australia and New Zealand. If you’re interested in a demo, look them up at evcomaus.com.au

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