Luminex Supports Sanremo Music Festival 2021

A Luminex network system supports the successful delivery of a much-changed Sanremo Music Festival. Photo: Claudio Cianfoni

In 2021, the 71st edition of Sanremo Music Festival was streamed via the broadcaster’s official website RaiPlay and the official Eurovision Song Contest website For the first time in its history, the contest took place without any live audience during the five-day show due to COVID-19. Luminex supported with various products, including GigaCore, LumiCore, LumiSplit, and Araneo.

Media Server Operator, Claudio Cianfoni discovered Luminex from RM Multimedia Sales & Technical Supporter, Ermanno Tontini. “Luminex’s intuitive network system gave me the possibility to manage, control, and simplify all the workflows that I have created and managed,” Cianfoni said. “With all the time that I have saved, I decided to fully invest in Luminex products for the benefits of simplicity and reliability.”

The futuristic scenography designed by the Castelli Studio focused on the use of dynamic LEDs. The LEDs were positioned not only from the room and the front cameras but also above the room ceiling, designed by the Television Director, Stefano Vicario, to bring out unforgettable scenes by using the lighting caissons on the backdrop, floor, and proscenium.

They also included 5km of 96 pixel/metre dynamic LED strips, more than 3,000 ArtNet universes in all TV studios with 60 units of PixLite MKII from Advatek and 64 pieces of GLP JBL Line 500 with 151 channels each. On top of this, there were 300m of double fibre and ethernet embedded, 500 and more lighting fixtures, like Robe T1, Spiider, MegaPointe, LEDBeam 150, and SGM G7 Beast, DTS Alchemy 5 lighting fixtures.

In order to cope with this immense scenic lighting system, I thought of spreading GigaCore throughout the studio. “This allowed us to provide network connections for ArtNet nodes. The convenience of the pre-configured Groups (VLANs) helped optimise the traffic and provided an easy way to remotely control the media servers from anywhere in the studio. This allowed us to easily map and patch all the dynamic LED of the studio,” Cianfoni explained.

“In addition, the director of photography – Mario Catapano, another visionary and amazing artist and protagonist of this festival with his lighting system – asked me to be able to control the LED bars embedded in the staircase with the media server available and with the lighting console (two Madrix licensed from 2048 universes each and an MA Lighting grandMA2 light console) to give a sense of continuity between the scene and the stairs,” he said.

“This was an easy task for LumiNode and the merging features available in its processing engines. In a few clicks, we were able to control these fixtures from both DMX sources at the same time. Luminex’s various product lines have given me great satisfaction by shaping and satisfying all the needs in this case.”

The team spread various GigaCore across the studio helped me to reach every part of the network system by connecting multiple optical fibres and ethernet ports on every switch. “We could then monitor the redundancy mode with the coloured LED port in case of link failure. All the switches are very easy to configure, which is important as I can save more time in system mapping. Furthermore, with the SFP + Multimode fiber adapters, I was able to bring all the potential of the network into play based on optical fibre instead of ethernet,” Cianfoni reported.

Araneo allowed Cianfoni to visualise the data flow and manage VLANs and bandwidth consumption. “It provided a top-level view of each connection and its current condition and showed physical interruptions and potential problems before anything might impact the show,” he said, adding that with the help of Luminex’s new product range LumiCore, it allowed the team to solve the merging of multiple ArtNet flows towards the staircase LED bars. “It was not just simply an additional feature but unlimited opportunities and combinations! We are so happy and proud to say that we are the very first to use LumiCore in Italy, and it was truly a great success!”

Araneo’s versatility and accuracy in detecting and making proactive solutions helped the technical part of the implementation, and if without so, we would it, Cianfoni believed that the team would not have been able to find and locate what happened during the show.

“Luminex’s unique product features like easy group function with pre-configured VLANs and RlinkX redundancy protocol gave me peace of mind during the shows or events as these are a hassle-free recovery system,” he said. “Within milliseconds the signal will switch to a redundant link in case of link failure, and we would not even notice and ensure a seamless experience.”

Luminex switches equip with automatic QoS and IGMP snooping to recognise various protocols involved, which helped to prioritise different protocols meanwhile respected the rest of the traffic, directed the traffic from the ports, and transmitted only to the user port with the flow of ArtNet, all at the same time. “This has helped a lot in synchronising the whole system with almost zero latency and delays,” Cianfoni concluded. “Apart from expressing my sincere thanks to the great team and technicians from scenoluminous department, I would like to thank Luminex. It was very simple to configure and gave the possibility to have more time to patch and program this huge project.”