A major step forward

Vectorworks, Inc., MA Lighting and Robe Lighting Announce Important Updates to DIN SPEC 15800:2021

Evolution of the GDTF File Format Demonstrates Industry-Wide Involvement, Extensibility and Scalability.

With fellow General Device Type Format (GDTF) founders MA Lighting and Robe Lighting, global design and BIM software provider Vectorworks, Inc. reveals several valuable updates to GDTF—the standard for describing the hierarchical and logical structure and controls of any type of controllable device in the lighting and entertainment industry. The GDTF file format has continued to evolve due to input and involvement from manufacturers across the globe and critical feedback from the many adopters of this time-saving workflow, resulting in a newly published update to DIN SPEC 15800:2021.

“Receiving recognition in the form of a published update to DIN SPEC 15800:2021 is a testament to the continued evolution and success of GDTF,” said Vectorworks CEO Dr. Bipab Sarkar. “The necessary work will continue to take place to ensure GDTF’s bright future so that its benefits can not only advance the work of the designers utilizing it, but the entertainment industry as a whole.”

DIN, the German Institute for Standardization, is the independent platform for standardization in Germany and worldwide. A DIN SPEC is a document that specifies requirements for products, services and/or processes. It’s a trusted strategic instrument for quickly and easily establishing and disseminating innovative solutions that do not conflict with any existing standards or rules of procedure.

“The update to DIN SPEC 15800:2021 is a good example of how DIN SPECs can evolve and stay current with specifications that meet the needs of the market,” said Michael Bahr, project manager at DIN. “GDTF and DIN SPEC 15800:2021 are clearly succeeding in serving the needs of the entertainment industry. I'm happy that we could support this project and update this standard with the GDTF group. The updated DIN SPEC 15800:2021 will make the GDTF format easier to use and more scalable for the future. That's what DIN SPEC is made for: ‘Today’s idea. Tomorrow’s standard.’”

DIN officially validated GDTF as an open standard for the entertainment industry worldwide in June 2020. Since then, the original creators of the file format have been joined by manufacturers and users across the industry to ensure it remains the standard to truly benefit the end users. Open communication, addressing feedback and continuous improvement efforts have led to the latest version of the file format, GDTF 1.2. GDTF 1.2 includes several major changes that address prior criticisms of the standard and key enhancements.

SVG and .gITF Support

GDTF 1.2 includes SVG support for defining 2D representation and .gITF support for defining 3D representation, allowing for better graphical rendering for GDTF objects. The additional support of these object types makes GDTF truly universal, not only targeting fixtures, but all kinds of objects that are used inside of an event.

Non-Linear Behavior and SubPhysicalAttributes

The updated GDTF file format will provide support for non-linear behavior of channel functions inside GDTF with DMX Profiles and better descriptions of the physical behavior of channel functions with SubPhysicalAttributes. The non-linear behavior and SubPhysicalAttributes allow designers more precise rendering of F\fixture behaviors in rendering. In addition, channel functions that ramp, pulse or strobe can now be described more accurately.

Non-DMX Based Control Protocols

GDTF 1.2 delivers support for non-DMX based control protocols like OSC. This support for OSC demonstrates the file format’s ability to not only support DMX, but also other formats, providing design and production professionals with more flexibility and control.

GDTF 1.2 also provides support for more object types like trusses, lasers, hoists and power distributors with new geometry types.

“A seemingly impossible task to allow standardized cross-manufacturer data exchange between devices in the lighting and entertainment industry has turned into a success story of industry-wide cooperation with the GDTF specification,” said Josef Valchar, CEO of Robe Lighting. “The continuous engagement of the GDTF group resulted in another GDTF update in the form of DIN SPEC 15800:2021, incorporating the feedback and work of many industry experts who contributed their expertise and time into a standard that allows their own products to utilize simpler yet more comprehensive workflows.”

“The GDTF group maintains a strong commitment to developing the format using open sources, while demonstrating responsiveness to critiques and requests to improve the formats,” said Gerhard Krude, managing director of MA Lighting Technology. “All in all, we emphasize that GDTF and MVR are made by the industry for the industry.”

To learn more about GDTF visit, gdtf-share.com, and if you are at LDI2021 stop by to attend the free learning sessions on GDTF. The updated DIN SPEC 15800:2021 will be published by Beuth Verlag sometime after LDI.

About Vectorworks, Inc.

Vectorworks, Inc. is an award-winning design and BIM software provider serving the architecture, landscape architecture and entertainment industries in 85 countries. Built with designers in mind since 1985, Vectorworks software offers you the freedom to follow your imagination wherever it leads you. Globally more than 685,000 users are creating, connecting and influencing the next generation of design with Vectorworks on Mac and Windows. Headquartered in Columbia, Maryland, with offices in the UK, Canada and Australia, Vectorworks is a part of the Nemetschek Group. Learn how you can design without limits at vectorworks.net or follow @Vectorworks.

About MA Lighting

MA Lighting International as master distributor is responsible for worldwide sales and marketing of the professional lighting control solutions of MA Lighting Technology. The current product range offers the grandMA3 series and the MA Network Switch. In the past MA has become well known for its grandMA2, grandMA and dot2 series.

Today, MA Lighting is respected for its technical knowledge and has achieved a unique international reputation for its operational philosophy. The company offers several decades of experience and strictly follows a professional user-centric approach, getting as close as possible to the market via its own international offices and support centers in the UK, North America, Latin America, the Middle East/India, Asia Pacific and Scandinavia/Eastern Europe/Russia – supported by a world-wide distribution and service network.

About Robe Lighting

Robe is among the world’s leading moving light manufacturers, recognized for its innovation, quality engineering and dedication to the very highest production values. The company is based in the Czech Republic and all processes involved in making the luminaires is undertaken locally in a 75,000 square meter premises. Currently, Robe employs over 850 skilled staff worldwide. Robe has wholly-owned subsidiaries in six key markets – the U.S., U.K., Middle East, Singapore (Asia Pacific), France and Germany – and a highly proactive and talented regional sales management team which helps oversee and co-ordinate the worldwide distribution network covering over 100 countries.

Robe’s moving and LED lights can be found everywhere. They are working and installed on stages and in concert halls, in theatres and all types of other venues; they are lighting all genres of performance from music to TV to drama and opera; appearing on a myriad of diverse events, as well as at theme park attractions and entering the specialist worlds of architectural and environmental illumination.

Robe is also known for being accessible, forward-thinking and understanding the importance of people and personal communication in sustaining a successful enterprise. The excellent communication with those investing in and using its dynamic range of products is at the core of future research and development.

The company is very proud of its independence and private ownership. This ensures the business remains agile, efficient, decisive and focused on producing genuinely creative tools for an imaginative and exciting industry that constantly pushes boundaries.

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