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Issue: April 1, 2009

ON THE LOOKOUT

By: Marc Loftus
With the economy in the tank and things looking rough for the foreseeable future, how many post pros will be heading to the NAB show in Las Vegas to check out, and even purchase, new gear? More than you might think!

Fred Paragano, owner and engineer at Paragon Studios, plans on attending the show to research equipment that will expand the video side of his audio/video facility in the coming months. In addition to mixing, mastering and ADR capabilities, Paragon also has a Final Cut Pro suite, and the studio is looking to add a color correction, finishing and DVD authoring suite in the next two months.

The new room is already in the works at the Franklin, TN, studio and could include gear from Assimilate or da Vinci before all is said and done.

Several staffers from NYC’s Creative Group will also be at the show. Company president Joe Avallone understands that the “path of least resistance” would be “to send no one” to a convention during tough economic times, but in the end, Creative Group “is in this business,” and it’s important to meet with manufacturers, such as Autodesk [Flame/Smoke is the backbone of Creative Group’s business] in order to see where their R&D is headed.

Creative Group, says Avallone, has seen a fall off in the video side of its business, but the audio side remains strong. So much so that Avallone says Creative Group plans to add a forth, and possibly a fifth, Digidesign suite at its Broadway location. The studio is also seeing an increased demand for file conversion services from clients that distribute internationally.

A company’s trade show presence, at a convention such as NAB, he says, speaks volumes.

“I think it’s ridiculous to say that you are ‘in the video/television business’ and then not show up at the convention,” says Avallone of manufacturers that are planning to sit this one out. “To not be there, as a business owner, I have to start thinking about that. [Is exhibiting at] NAB going to break their budget? What better business is there than ours, where the image or illusion is the reality?”