ETC’s trusted rigging family now has two new members: the Foundation® Server and Foundation Desk. The Foundation Server brings the dependability, engineering and programming ease of ETC Rigging hoists to television studios, performing arts centers and other installations requiring more control flexibility. And the Foundation Desk packs familiar Client software into a portable footprint ready for the future.
The Foundation Server opens up new possibilities for complex rigging installations. It has twice the control capability as the traditional Foundation system, controlling up to 192 hoists, and multiple control stations, handheld remotes and more E-stop buttons can be connected.
“The Foundation Server uses the same Client software, but goes beyond previous limits, thanks to its dedicated component hardware,” describes ETC Rigging Product Manager Nils Becker. “The expanded Server software manages communication with hoists and safety electronics, with additional code to handle multiple control surfaces.”
ETC designed the Foundation Server with a focus on safety. It meets European SIL-3 (Safety Integrity Level) standards for E-stop, as well as SIL-2 for all other functions. And the Server also allows for independent identification of external E-stops.
With a similar feel as the wall-mount Foundation controller, the Foundation Desk can control up to 96 axes of control and includes improved control hardware for easier operation, along with a sleek chassis based on ETC’s popular Eos Ti® lighting-control console. It features a high-definition 17-inch touchscreen that can be adjusted to an angle comfortable for viewing. ETC redesigned the GO buttons that accompany the multifunctional joystick for additional ease of use. Its E-stop button has been moved back and recessed into the desk, in order to avoid accidental button pushes.
“The Foundation Desk is more portable than our traditional Foundation controller, so you can put it on a cart and move it around your facility. That means you can work wherever you have a plug-in point and a good view of your rig,” says Becker.
With more processing hardware, the Foundation Desk is better poised for the next generation of software. It has external monitor support and a much faster processer. And it works seamlessly with ETC Rigging hoists, accessories, and the new Foundation Server.