ETC has released the Eos v3.0 software, bringing three-dimensional programming and augmented-reality control to the Eos platform. The update marks the official integration of the much-anticipated Augment3d toolkit into Eos.
With Augment3d, users can program moving fixtures with unprecedented speed and ease, visualise their cues in an imported model of their space, and even position lights with a flick of an augmented-reality smartphone “focus wand.” Over 5,000 beta users tested the software in recent months, and their feedback has helped to build one of the most exciting new Eos feature sets yet.
The new software runs natively on all the latest Eos Family hardware and can be used with the ETCnomad software on Mac and PC. Educators, students, and those wishing to learn the software can download the latest ETCnomad software for free and make use of the Augment3d programming space to create virtual design projects in offline mode. ETC has also created a virtual light lab show file to help students use Augment3d to learn about lighting.
If the educational potential of Augment3d seems perfectly timed for the current distance-learning moment, the long-term professional applications for Augment3d are even more powerful. Augment3d supports over 50 different 3D file extensions for importing venue or set models, and you can easily import your fixture plot using a Vectorworks plugin. Even without a pre-existing plot or model, you can use the Fixture Position Estimation tool to quickly reverse-engineer the spatial coordinates of your moving fixtures from as few as four focus palettes. Loading into a new touring venue has never been easier.
Once you have your virtual rig, Augment3d offers a host of new tools to make focus and cueing a breeze. You can position the beam of a moving or static fixture with a click or a touch. Turn on stick-beam visualisation to drag your beams into place using Focus Handles and then maintain their spacing as you move multiple selected fixtures together. You can even focus from the perspective of the fixture to get an electrician’s-eye view. A new “Staging Mode” provides a busking-friendly alternative to “Live” and “Blind,” allowing you to preview and edit your looks before recording or playing them. A new “Staging Mode” keycap for your console is available on the ETC website.
ETC’s iRFR and aRFR focus remote apps also now boast an exciting new augmented-reality “Wand” function. After scanning an AR target placed in your space, you’ll be able to view and to select your lights using the camera on your phone, swipe up or down to control intensity, pinch for zoom, and point your beams with the “find me” function or by using your phone as a pointer wand.
The Eos v3.0 update contains more than just Augment3d, however. The Graphical User Interface (GUI) has undergone a major overhaul, including new display management features that let you drag and rearrange tabs. Additional information has also been added to the Faders, Palettes, Presets and Groups displays. Users working in video applications can now toggle optional reference overlays on the Colour Picker to assist in choosing camera-friendly colours.
Updates to Magic Sheets include options for creating non-interactive, display-only objects or magic sheets, and the ability to change an object’s type while retaining all other linked information. Magic Sheet objects can now also be linked to softkeys, display a colour assigned to a particular targeted macro, or let you monitor the status of networked relays and timecode clocks. Additional Magic Sheet features offer improved control of mechanical dowsers and of individual cells in a fixture.
The software also introduces new tools for working with effects, multi-cell fixtures, fixture parameters, and more. Eos v3.0 gives you more control over “random” effects, allowing you to either create a “true random” that is different every time or to audition different “randoms” until you find one you like. New controls also let you add multiple mirrors to your Offset selections, invert your channel selection when using a jump offset, or to use the channel selection order from a group to create an offset pattern. A new graphic displays an animation of the offset pattern applied to your selected channels. A new multi-cell tool lets you easily create subgroups for all the cells in a channel, while another new feature allows the value of one parameter to be copied to other parameters. Other updates speed the processes of patching pixel maps and updating fixture profiles.
Because of the demands of the 3D-programming environment, Eos v3.0 is incompatible with some older, Windows XP-based Eos hardware. However, the new software includes an option in the shell that allows you to boot the desk in an earlier software build in case you need to use it alongside XP-based hardware.