Today I spoke with Richard Steinau from AV Concepts. We spoke about an AV company that had to stay ahead.

AV Concepts’ origins began 25 years ago and started with a simple concept – to work on AV with great service, both in quality and customer relations. As time marched on they realized that AV equipment was just equipment, and they began to look at the idea of staying ahead with technology trends.

By 2008, recession time, when most companies were pulling back on R&D, AV Concepts took this time to really look and invest in innovation and cutting-edge technologies. They looked at immersive technologies that could bring unique experiences and audience engagement to the meeting, events and entertainment industries.  Adding to their already extensive AV knowledge, they began to focus on holographic technology, as well as 3D projection mapping.

Skip several years to the 2012 Coachella Arts & Music Festival where AV Concepts conjured up the Tupac Shakur holographic projection. Amazing to see live, the imagery went viral! The rest is history!

The technical aspect of holographic projection comes from the old theater trick, Pepper’s Ghost illusion, used in amusement parks and haunted houses for years. Richard and the team at AV Concepts modernized this concept and created an amazing tool that can now be used in theatrical productions and events. Just think, your CEO is on stage and simultaneously they are also beamed across the planet creating eight (or however many) other three-dimensional holographic projections in real time. Live telepresence is unbelievable to see!

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Video projection mapping is another new digital technology that AV Concepts is invested in. Here the team developed their own techniques, combining hardware, software and methodology to bring their clients the highest quality, most versatile and quickest system around. It’s fascinating and it’s called Liquid Scenic.

These technologies helped AV Concepts realize the need for creative services and content creation.  Of course when you are building with brand new technology there is always a lot to learn and this team knew it inside and out.  They realized they could help their clients create the BEST presentations by being included in the creative process from the beginning.

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Of course with any creative project the first thing is what is the message, what are you communicating and who is your audience – once that is established you can look at what technology may fit best.  Budget of course also comes into play.

What really impressed me about speaking with Richard Steinau of AV Concepts is their ability to differentiate themselves by focusing fully on the very best way to be ahead of the technology curve. They are now leading experts in both of the mediums discussed here.

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The future for these guys includes experimenting with surface-less projection – where the projection is truly in thin air. And for the holographic illusion, how does it enter more into the consumer market, where we can see this type of  projection for products that are too big to travel, like an airplane, or a new product that needs to be in every store window but is not created yet.

The FUTURE is NOW at AV Concepts and there are very interesting times ahead for Richard and the company!

Richard Steinau will be speaking on “Holographic Illusions: Incorporating Emerging Technologies in the Boardroom and Ballroom” at BizBash IdeaFest New York on October 30 in the North Hall at the Jacob K. Javits Center. For more information, and to register, please visit www.bizbash.com/ideafestny

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