Enabling your creativity
The entertainment industry is a booming market. Entertainment is seen as a basic human need: People all over the world want to be transported to a dream land where they can unwind and enjoy relaxing moments. Guests are willing to spend large amounts of money for unique experiences, such as a live concert or theme park. The key economic factor in the entertainment industry is the ultimate guest experience. Here, the goal is to meet the high expectations of the public, or even exceed them. Aspects such as competition and the search for new attractions play a similarly important role. To truly capture the audience not only the creativity of artists and designers is required, but also the control and automation technology that sets no technical limits in terms of implementation.
Regardless of whether a subproject, a series product for entertainment functions, complex theatrical machinery, or a complete theme park: PC-based control from Beckhoff offers you technology that is proven in applications around the globe, which you can use to master any creative challenge. Read on to discover more about the Beckhoff system for realizing ultimate visitor experiences and enjoy increased competitiveness as a result!
Creative solutions need innovative technology
Projects implemented globally in the entertainment industry using Beckhoff technology prove that PC-based control is ideally suited to an industry that strives to constantly surpass itself – or the competition – in order to be able to offer new attractions. Translating creative ideas into technical solutions has to be just as fast and flexible. As a creativity to technology translator, the system integrator becomes the interface between art or idea and technology thanks to support from Beckhoff. The performance of PC and EtherCAT-based control technology and its extensive connectivity to the individual technical functions places no limits on the control tasks that can be realized in the entertainment industry. On the contrary, the performance of Beckhoff technology has even inspired many customer applications.
Convince yourself of our worldwide reference and the success of hundreds of applications implemented with Beckhoff technology!
We redefine performance!
Thanks to the performance of modern processors, the TwinCAT automation software, and EtherCAT, the extremely fast communication system, applications can be realized in a way that is only possible with Beckhoff technology:
- EtherCAT enables synchronization times in the μs range.
- control of up to 255 motion axes on one controller
- Several controllers can also be combined to synchronously control a large number of motion axes.
- Up to 80 DMX masters can be operated on one controller.
- Audio problems can be detected precisely thanks to the extreme controller performance.
- Beckhoff offers LED drivers, which can dim precisely to 0 %.
- Thanks to the high speed of EtherCAT, SMPTE Timecode can be integrated via standard products.
- high performance for ultra-precise control of processes and applications
All technical systems on one platform: Beckhoff supports all relevant interfaces
Besides integrating DMX, sACN, Art-Net™, PosiStageNet, DALI, KNX/EIB, dimmers, and LED for lighting control systems, system integrators also have all typical interfaces at their disposal for connecting AV and multimedia systems. With support for SMPTE Timecode, PJLink, AES 70 (OCA), OSC, Crestron, and QSC, Beckhoff speaks the unique "languages" of this industry, ensuring that the most varied devices and applications in the entertainment industry can be controlled on the basis of standard control components. In addition, suitable communication options such as ADS, EAP, OPC-UA, and a further 25 fieldbuses are also available within the Beckhoff world to establish connections to other systems of relevance for the entertainment industry. The comprehensive connectivity means that all technical functions can be linked together – from stage technology through audio/video control, lighting technology, and control of show effects to device management and condition monitoring. Moreover, the consistency of the control offers the advantage that all system information is made available to the user on one platform.
Centralized or decentralized control approach? PC-based control masters both!
When opting for a centralized or decentralized control approach, the sole determining factor is the application – Beckhoff control technology enables both. Thanks to its modularity and open software and hardware interfaces, Beckhoff's control platform is ideal for centralized or decentralized control of individual or all applications involved in stage, show, and concert technology, such as movable objects, lighting technology, AV and media technology, and building automation. The only critical factor when choosing a control approach is the application or the requirements of the customer. Individual technical functions implemented with Beckhoff technology, such as stage machinery, animated figures, lighting control, or the stage manager's desk, can be integrated effortlessly in existing control environments. The variety of interfaces in the Beckhoff system also means, however, that overall control can also be established at an overarching level, allowing all technical functions to be controlled centrally.
Flexibility: PC-based control offers diverse operating options
Beckhoff's control system offers a variety of multi-touch displays as well as TwinCAT HMI as a HTML-5-based visualization solution for realizing modern operating functions. However, operators and creative professionals are often not willing to relinquish "their" console as a control element. Beckhoff's control platform has the answer here, allowing consoles and other tools to be used effortlessly thanks to the large variety of communication interfaces – a unique feature of Beckhoff’s industrial controllers. Moreover, the openness of PC-based control technology from Beckhoff also allows the control or data transfer to be handled by a variety of other systems, such as Brainsalt Conductor, motion sensors, QSC, Crestron, and more.
The logic can be programmed freely within the Beckhoff platform and performed according to
- fixed steps (cues, presets, scenes)
- or based on the analysis of creative input, such as images
We get things moving – safely and surely!
Beckhoff supplies a broad range of scalable drive technology components – fitted optionally with Beckhoff's safety technology TwinSAFE, up to SIL 3/PL e – for motion control applications such as for scenery or point hoists, show elements, or kinetic installations, for example.
Benefit from the flexibility of a modular and scalable control system
The scalability and modularity of the Beckhoff components enable universal use in the entertainment industry, from small and medium-sized applications through to highly complex venues and theme park attractions. System integrators can assemble their control system in a modular way according to the performance, available installation space, and budget of the application. Functional enhancements and changes to the control system are possible at any time thanks to the modularity of the solution – even during operation – thus providing a guarantee of excellent flexibility.
- All technical functions in small or medium-sized applications can be executed, for example, on the ultra-compact C6015 Industrial PC with the TwinCAT automation software. It provides adequate processing power to control movable objects, lighting technology, AV and media technology, as well as building automation.
- The system simply has to be extended or scaled upward for highly complex applications. This means that every technical function gets a separate controller, for example an Embedded PC in the CX series, with the controllers working in perfect harmony.
Ensure your success with an economical and sustainable control solution
PC-based control offers you an economical solution – from investment through implementation to use:
- performance and cost-driven control system design
- optimum price-to-performance ratio
- lower total cost due to shorter engineering times
- good service and maintenance options
With state-of-the-art Beckhoff technologies, you are also equipped for the demands of the future. Are you planning to upgrade the control system later on, as more or different functions are needed? This is not a problem thanks to Beckhoff's modularly expandable control platform: The I/O system can be extended as desired and the existing software part reused. You are therefore always optimally equipped to create the ultimate guest experience of the future!
Protect your investment with an industry-proven high quality control system "Made in Germany"
When you choose Beckhoff, you are choosing industry-proven, reliable, and durable control technology "Made in Germany". As a pioneer of PC-based control technology and inventor of EtherCAT, Beckhoff has been implementing open automation systems for more than 35 years, which are used in the most varied applications, from machine controllers to the process industry through building control to entertainment applications. Machines equipped with Beckhoff technology are used in their hundreds of thousands today by world-leading end customers in the machine tool, packaging and plastics industry, as well as the automotive industry.
Beckhoff has established a large international customer base in the entertainment industry over the course of the last twenty years, and has been exhibiting at leading trade fairs for entertainment and media technology since 2011.
You too can benefit from the advantages of PC-based control technology!
PC-based control protects your investment through:
- industry-proven components for reliable 24/7 operation
- compliance with open standards such as EtherCAT and IEC 61131-3
- long-term availability of products
- Germany as a production location vouches for the high quality of all Beckhoff components.
- Extraordinary production depth and high production capacities guarantee long-term availability and delivery reliability.
- continuous economic growth and long-term stability of the family-run business
Working locally on a global scale: with Beckhoff as an experienced automation partner
Beckhoff is a system provider with a deep understanding of technology in a variety of industries and supports you in realizing your application. You can benefit from our extensive expertise in entertainment technology, AV and media technology, building automation, and general machine control. Beckhoff is represented in over 75 countries around the globe with its own subsidiaries and distributors. We have local teams in place at numerous locations in the hot spots of the entertainment world – in the United States and China – so that we can offer you expert application support and fast service on the ground. Nothing more should therefore stand in the way of your international projects.
Maximum availability of the control system ensures seamless (show) performance
- As an industry-proven solution, PC-based automation technology from Beckhoff is exceptionally reliable and durable.
- Use of standards: Some 95 percent of all application solutions are covered by Beckhoff standard components and technologies.
- The advantages for you:
- availability from stock
- mature products
- fast and efficient service
- exceptionally long service times for components of up to 20 years or more
- extensive diagnostic options via TwinCAT and EtherCAT
- Predictive maintenance functions: in the cloud or locally on the control system. With TwinCAT Analytics, Beckhoff offers excellent possibilities to collect and analyze data.
- If a device fails, the Beckhoff components can be exchanged really easily, whether I/O system or servo drive series with quick-change function.
- maximum availability of control components also under the most adverse environmental conditions
PC-based control offers automation solutions for all stationary performances.
PC-based control integrates all technical systems for mobile performances.
PC-based control automates unique installations involving light, water and kinetics.
PC-based control supports entertainment technology – from amusement parks to TV studios.
Beckhoff control components for movable objects
Beckhoff control components for lighting technology
AV and media technology
Beckhoff control components for AV and media technology
Beckhoff control components for building automation
Further technical information for the entertainment industry
Application and trade show videos for the entertainment industry
Beckhoff is member of the following associations:
- AVIXA™ (Audiovisual and Integrated Experience Association)
- DTHG (Deutsche Theatertechnische Gesellschaft)
- IAAPA (Global Association for the Attractions Industry)
- OETHG (Österreichische Theatertechnische Gesellschaft)
- TEA (Themed Entertainment Association)
- VPLT (Verband für Medien- und Veranstaltungstechnik e. V.)