IBC. The superstar of media and technology trade shows. With a wealth of new technology on display and year on year growth in visitors, it’s easy to think its popularity is everlasting, but with the rise of more sophisticated and intimate shows, can we still call it number one?
I sat down with my colleague and CEO of Azule, Peter Savage, to get his take on IBC 2018.
Hi Peter. So firstly, what was the atmosphere like this year? Was it a busy year for the show?
IBC is huge, so it’s hard to get a gauge on the overall atmosphere of the show. While the IBC figures show a rise in numbers year on year, I much prefer the more intimate shows, like Cinec, where you can really get up close and personal with new equipment and also have some breathing space to talk to prospective clients and catch up with suppliers.
The bar seemed eerily light on UK customers this year but then that’s no surprise with talk of Brexit looming everywhere. If anything, some people probably avoided IBC just to take a break from the never-ending talks on the UK’s perpetual news. Certainly every European I encountered asked me about Brexit and my answer was the same every time ‘F**k knows’.
So, what’s looking hot this year? Were there any new products on display?
Cooke Optics excitingly unveiled a new Full-Frame Anamorphic 50mm T2.3 lens. It was just a taste of what is to come as they follow on with a new high-end range of anamorphics, which have been designed to live up to the rigorous demands of DoPs shooting scope. There seems to be a whole new fashion in glass that is going to fit full format cameras such as the RED Monstro and Sony Venice
To that effect, did any ‘major players’ unveil any new products?
Sony have just launched a new camera that sits just under the 4300, (The HDC-3000 series) although I’m not sure why, if I’m honest, but that’s another story. As they say in sport, ‘when you are winning, why tinker?’
Did you visit IBC’s iconic ‘future zone’ and was there anything on display that caught your eye?
I did visit and I watched the 8K demo of the world cup final, although whether that was for the technology or because I hadn’t seen the match before, I can’t say! It did look impressive but to be honest, I couldn’t say it was that much better than 4K. The differences are very subtle which may not translate well in to the mass-market however I expect tech aficionados will be very excited for the transition to 8K.
How about the talks and seminars. Did you have a chance to stop by those?
Unless you are a conference member, you do not have access to any of the talks or seminars. This is an area in which I think IBC could improve, as it seems very much a ‘them and us’. A lot of the smaller exhibitions have a good mix where you can go and sit in the auditoriums and listen to some talks without having to pay a premium. It’s also the same for the awards show, you have to pay a premium to watch the awards being given out which is a shame as it would have been good to be in the moment with the deserving winners.
So as we all know, IBC is held in the beautiful city of Amsterdam, which is also famous for its diverse eateries; Did you eat or drink anything note-worthy?
Now here is where Amsterdam really shines. If you plan well enough ahead then, WOW, it’s a culinary dream. My recommendations came from a Dutch friend of mine, so I went French at Le Restaurant, Dutch at the Rikjsmuseum and Japanese at Hosokawa. Incredible.
My mouth is watering! Were your culinary encounters your favourite part of the show?
It certainly does sound like the food was the best part but, honestly? My favourite part is networking at the beach bar between 4pm and 5.30pm I have been doing this stuff for so long now and know so many good people that I really have a great chance to catch up and also meet new people. Particularly exciting this year were the meetings I had with European-based manufacturers. Luckily enough, we are the only leasing company in the industry that really does specialise in delivering a full European solution, so those kinds of meetings are crucial in continuing to ensure we offer really flexible finance for our customers.
Oh! I also need to mention the MRMC motion control camera dance, very entertaining!. You can catch a quick glimpse video on our Twitter page!
And just lastly, with gender equality in the news every day, have you noticed notable shift/rise in the number of women working in Broadcast?
On the actual kit side of the business there is, sadly, a lack of women however there are many incredible women working in areas such as production, sound engineering and design, so yes and no in terms of the rise of women, but it is definitely lacking in diversity and we can do better.
Interviewed and written by Nastasia Bishop, Marketing Manager at Azule