As you well may know, we've got an extremely busy upcoming November here at Cypher Media; with four simultaneous jobs occurring in Nice and London, with two jobs one after the other in Prague. we'll have Cypher crew dotted around each event, Jake will be in London, Chris will be in nice and Adrian will be in Prague.
Due to the high-flux of jobs, we've had to purchase an arsenal of new storage units, including 5 264GB and 4 128GB SD cards.
Chris has been busy this week after jetting off to Amsterdam; he’s been recording interviews at the Sheraton Hotel, Schipol for our upcoming Global Tax Symposium being held in Prague.
We took along our trusty Sony XDCAM PXW-FS7 alongside a 50mm lens for some stunning interview footage.
Next month Stuart will be attending an IOSH course; IOSH stands for the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health. It is a three-day course that will cover working safely and managing safely. Working safely is aimed at all employees; this will cover the essentials of health and safety in the workplace. Managing safely, which is aimed at managers, supervisors and team leaders, will give them the skills and knowledge to manage health and safety within teams.
The training usually includes activities such as identifying hazards, then writing up and assessing potential risks and improving health and safety performance in general.
After a short rest period, we’re preparing ourselves for a busy November! We have three overlapping jobs that all kick off on the same day! We’ll be working simultaneously in Prague, Nice and London; they should really test our limits!
In 2016 we filmed for the London Working Week and we’ve been called up to do the same again this year; it will consist of a four-day-long shoot in More London and Bermondsey Yard. The filming will begin on Monday 12th and conclude on Friday 16th of September.
We’ll be managing a webcasting event in Nice from the 12th – 14th of September, on this shoot we’ll also be providing staging, branding, sound and lighting.
Finally, Prague, this is two conferences happening one after the other, work will begin on the 12th and finishing up on the 24th. We’ll be providing our services for a Global Tax Symposium and an International Tax Academy.
We’ve taken the quieter part of the year to sit down and think about how we can expand our array of equipment; after getting rid of our older Mac we invested in a brand new 15” MacBook Pro.
We’ve kept an older MacBook due to the fact it still runs using macOS version 10.11: El Capitan, this is useful due to it having the older version of Final Cut, allowing us to playback some of our older files. We use a piece of software called 7 to X; this allows us to edit older projects in our current editing system, Final Cut Pro X.
It’s that time again. Our yearly Portable Appliance Test, or PAT test, was carried out yesterday. The PAT test ensures none of our equipment may be dangerous to work with, and it is all inside the health and safety guidelines.
We called specialist PAT testers to the office, the device they use determines whether or not the equipment plugged into it is safe for use or not. The piece of equipment would then get a pass or fail sticker. The test includes both a visual and more in-depth check, gathering information on earth continuity, lead polarity and insulation resistance checks.
Since July of 2017 we’ve been working very hard on a programme that has been tried and tested throughout the duration of this, and last year. Cypher Media’s POD, or Programmable Onsite Display, is a real-time timetable system used for creating and managing event schedules.
The bespoke timetable was developed using NodeJS, SocketIO and MySQL. The main purpose of this project was to just create a timetable for delegates that could be easily updated from one device, meaning we don’t have to manually update every laptop.
In version 2.0 the system was extended so that videos would automatically play when given a time, the system also allowed us to upload multiple videos per session. Session highlighting was also implemented, when a session is in progress, the name and time grey out.
On our current version, 3.0, a new screen layout was added to give us more flexibility; having the ability to create both landscape and portrait timetables allowed us to branch out from laptops and plasma screens into ASUS Chromebits and standing LCD signs.
After a jam-packed few months with jobs in Rome, Madrid, Charlotte, Paris, Prague and London, we've now got some time in the office to prepare for jobs later on in the year.
We'll be sorting out all of our equipment soon for our yearly PAT testing. This is to assure that it is safe enough to work with and does not breach the health and safety guidelines.
Next up: updating of our asset list; it’s good to keep on top of what we have, this gives us the ability to rule out any equipment we no longer use so that we can put it up for sale and purchase newer, state of the art equipment. Our asset list also makes creating job carnets easier, as it contains the item name, serial number and location allowing us to get through customs much easier.
Finally, we’ll be doing some general kit labelling, numbering our cases will make it easier to load the trucks by simply giving the numbers of the flight cases we need for those jobs.
From one to the next! We’re currently finishing up a Global FS Tax Leaders event in Paris whilst simultaneously preparing for a Future of Work Conference in Madrid!
The Future of Work Conference will be held at The Westin Palace, a gorgeous, modern hotel renowned for its large events space and capacity. There will be 24 Cypher Media crew on site to set up and manage the event. We will be catering for over 200 delegates during the 3-day-long conference.
The main room will host a 4-meter high twin screen set, along with 4 3m high x 1.5m wide free-standing LED columns.
Over the course of this week we’ve been busy preparing our kit for a Financial Services Conference being held in Paris, and a Future of Work Conference that will take place shortly after in Madrid.
The Financial Services Conference is being held at the Westin Paris. This will be a 3-day event and over 20 crew will be used from rig to de-rig.
The main room will have a huge 48ft 3:12 aspect ratio screen, the same width as the whole room. The two 12ft side screens can link to the main screen, or be used as individual screens with seamless switching.
With two conferences in two weeks, it's going to be a hectic fortnight for most of the crew!
We only had a small room, with no windows, so we had to be clever about how we set up our shot. We used one of our Dedolights and gobo projector attachment to create a window blind shadow on the wall behind the subject. Coupled with our easily portable LED lights, this created a studio like environment in the small space.
We used our Sony FS7 with 50mm Samyang lens so that we could be fairly close to the subject whilst also allowing us to throw the background out of focus.
Several years ago this would not have been possible with the kit we used to have but now we have much greater flexibility.
We’ve treated our self to some new kit at the Cypher Media office! The Zhiyun Crane Handheld Gimbal has been added to our arsenal of equipment.
This gimbal is excellent due to its easy to use one-handed operation and compact design. It can be used to create cinematic video by eliminating camera shakiness, making the video as smooth as silk!
We plan on using this piece of tech to get some stunning general videos, or GVs, for use in our opening and closing videos.
After a successful International Tax & Legal conference in Prague, we jetted off to Madrid shortly after for a small two-day shoot at the Melia Castilla, Madrid.
We set up a rig in the conference room consisting of a Sony PMW EX-330 and a Sony PXW-Z150.
Less than two weeks later we were back at the Melia Castilla providing AV equipment and support, as well as onsite editing, branding set & stage building, sound, lighting and much more for an Indirect Taxes Conference.
All of our kit has been collected from the Cypher Media office for next week’s International Tax Academy being held at The Hilton, Prague. We have a fairly large crew of 26 covering the 6 days we’re working on site.
The main room will have a 16ft, 16:9 ratio centralised screen with two 14ft 16:9 screens either side, the set has been designed so that it can be used as one complete room, as well as three separate rooms if need be.
We return to the Cypher office Monday 30th April and get straight into preparing for the next conference, being held at the Melia Castilla Hotel, Madrid in mid-July.