Navigating The 0s And 1s
“Data today is where HD was in 1995,” Ron Burdett, CEO of Sunset Digital in Glendale, said to me when I visited him recently. A high-res version of one of America’s favorite actresses was being graded in a THX-approved digital cinema suite, and sure enough, on the white board in Burdett’s office was a block diagram for possible storage scenarios for the facility, which normally handles the digital timing of six to eight movies at a time.

At infoComm, Focus on Education
Forget about the exhibits. Don’t plan your infoComm experience backwards. Most people attending infoComm plan their show experience around the exhibits and their ability to peruse the show floor and see all the manufacturers they need to see. Then, depending on the appointments they make and the meetings they attend in the booth they determine the left over time slots for taking in a course or two through infoComm’s extensive show educational offerings.

And Then There Were Two
Five years ago, Mitsubishi shocked the world during NAB when it announced that it was out of the CRT manufacturing business. Mitsubishi said that it wanted to transition all consumer and professional screens over 20" from CRT to Plasma -- dubbed the "screen of the future." Flat, at only four inches deep, and using some of the same performance properties as CRT with a phosphor-based color system, the Plasma was off and running, with an advanced technology that left bulky presentation CRT monitors an artifact of display history.

The Customer's Always Right
Like anyone whose profession entails performing a service, you have to grin and bear the unbearable client.

Little Bitty, Big Deals
Historically, the ProAV integration and installation market has been dominated by a handful of LCD-based projectors all weighing over 20 pounds. The sub-20 pounders and even sub-10 pounders have been relegated to luggable, portable and ultra-portable product categories for traveling presenters or cart-based projection in corporations and schools. But not any more.

Selling Service Agreements to Anyone
I must admit, I was overwhelmed by the positive response I received to my last editorial -- Service Contracts are Easy to Sell: Sell Job Security. It is obvious that most of you see the value proposition of selling service contracts as well as the margin potential.

Service Contracts are Easy to Sell: Sell Job Security
If you're a regular reader of my columns, you know that our firm works with dealers, on occasion, to help them become more profitable. In some cases, it's a box company wanting to learn how to sell systems. In some cases, it's a systems integrator trying to sell design/build contracts. In some cases, it's a design/build firm trying to get better cost accounting on jobs. But, in almost all cases, they are all equally frustrated at the level of success they have selling their most profitable product: Service contracts.

OK, Let's Take Another Look at Warranties
Last week, A/V industry guru Gary Kayye wrote about the anomaly in the ProAV market where we have super-ridiculously long warranties that put most ProAV dealers in quandary. Remember that column? Boy, did he get letters.

The ProAV Anomaly
Editorial columnist and A/V guru Gary Kayye has been on the road, taking a close-up look at ProAV dealers across the USA and Canada. The upshot of his two year tour? He has a bone to pick with the way long-term warranties from manufacturers have become, frankly, bloated, confusing and just plain stupid.

Hold On
It’s January. The weather’s bleak and—surprise, surprise—so is the economy. Though we may have had periodic glimpses of recovery, the numbers are just as grim as they were last year at this time. This relentless downward pattern, coupled with the fear that the worst is yet to come, has driven some media departments and independent businesses to the brink of extinction. Is your media department, or job, an endangered species? Consider the frightening news from the audio/visual side of our industry. When contributing editor David English was interviewing sources for his piece on the changing role of AV specialists, he was surprised to learn about “controlled layoffs,” a widespread practice that marginalizes long-time employees when they are summarily fired and then rehired by an outside staffing agency.