Products, Materials + Tools | Oct 30, 2012

Astera Launches ARC3 Tablet Controller

Replacing the ARC2 RF Remote Control as Astera’s main handheld LED controller, ARC3 is the most advanced controller available for wireless event lamps. Via a seven-inch, 1024x600-pixel captive touchscreen, it can manage an unlimited amount of wireless Astera products with complete control over colour mixing and calibration. The large screen ensures that every function is easily accessible and important parameters are always in view, allowing for fast and intuitive setup of event lighting.

The tablet features a 'target lamps' section that facilitates direct communication with a user-definable selection of individual fixtures or groups of fixtures, and does not require any WiFi gateways or relays. The user can quickly and easily customise effects, launch programs instantly or store them on the device in advance of an event. The ARC3 is also capable of communicating with third-party lamps and other appliances and, importantly, can easily be upgraded with new functions, which Astera’s software specialists are continually developing. For example, a forthcoming feature will be the detection of music speed and automatic adjustment of lighting to suit the mood.

Mara Michel, Sales Manager at Astera Germany, commented: “Our ARC2 RF Remote Control was already the leading model in the market, however, as powerful as it was, the screen did have its limitations. With the ARC3, we no longer are faced with this problem and, in fact, we've paved the way for a multitude of new functions. We've taken the potential of wireless LED control to a new level – the possibilities are endless.”

Though it was still in the final stages of beta testing, the ARC3 was called upon this month by German national TV station ZDF. Production crew relied on the ARC3's exceptional range to run an event on popular entertainment show Wetten Dass, which saw the eight-man Bundesliga rowing team from Frankfurt take on teenage wakeboarding ace Max Balser. The team rowed fast enough to keep Balser afloat through a 300-metre slalom course, as the Olympic Gold-winning German National rowing team watched on.

Since the event was held after dark on the river Rhine in Düsseldorf, the ARC3 was required to control a number of Astera Spheres – wireless LED fixtures enclosed within fully-waterproof PE globes – which floated on the river, creating the highly visible slalom course for the event. The ARC3 was the only solution for controlling the spheres, since it is unique in its ability to transmit protocol data over a range of more than 300 metres.

You can download the app for free and try it out on your android 3.2 (or later) tablet. By visiting the dedicated ARC3 page at: www.astera-led.com.

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