Lighting Programmer and Designer Tom Young has invested in two Visual Productions TimeCore units with rackmount accessories, from its exclusive UK distributor Entedi. TimeCore is a compact device that can perform all tasks related to timecode, including generating, following, converting and displaying timecode signals. Freelancer Young, who works closely with lighting designers Tim Routledge and David Bishop among others, has already used TimeCore on a number of productions, including prime-time mainstream TV shows.
Young considers the feature-rich TimeCore to be an invaluable addition to his ‘toolkit’ as he explained: “More and more productions are becoming heavily reliant on timecode and show-control systems, so I wanted to invest in something as rock-solid as possible. The built-in web server is probably my favourite feature. This is where the unit configuration is done and because it’s built-in, it means no additional software is required and it works cross-platform, which is a big positive. On larger systems/productions it also means that either myself or the system tech can easily log into the units remotely for monitoring purposes or to change any settings, without having to physically access the units.”
In the relatively short time he has owned the units, Young has been impressed and is satisfied that he has made a good investment: “Luckily, so far, I’ve not faced any particularly daunting timecode challenges since owning the units – I’m yet to try the OSC show control commands and network based timecode over protocols like sACN and Art-Net but I’m interested to see how the unit handles them and the advantages it may offer. In addition, the ability to convert between different frame rates is a life saver! If I’ve spent a while programming something offline and then get to site and discover that the timecode is a different frame rate to what I’ve been told, I can do the conversion in the TimeCore without having to re-do all of my programming. Thankfully it’s not happened yet but at least I know if it does, the TimeCore will be on hand to help!”
Young is looking forward to using TimeCore on a wide range of productions this year and notes the advantage for touring purposes of being able to mount two units side by side in a 1U rack space, something that leads him to reflect favourably on the willingness of Visual Productions and Entedi to take note of customer feedback: “I’ve been impressed with Visual Productions for their willingness to implement features and accessories in response to user demand. I remember when I first considered the unit a few years ago and had one demo, there was no rack mount accessory, which unfortunately meant that it wasn’t a viable product for me.
I mentioned this to Cally and the Entedi team who passed my feedback on. A short while later, a very slick rackmount bracket was released! It’s this sort of response and willingness to listen that really makes a difference to me as a user/customer and is so important in developing the product to be as good as it can possibly be. I’d also add that in spite of the fact that my purchase was for a couple of smaller items rather than a large quantity of moving lights or similar, the Entedi team were a pleasure to deal with – always on hand to answer any questions and quick to supply the product.”