Avolites Ai Brings Major Metropolitan City Club Vibe to Charleston's Trio

Trio is the center of the nightlife universe for Charleston, South Carolina, a status that was reaffirmed this past March in the wake of a $1 million renovation that included new sound, lights and video, with the venue’s immersive display even more spectacular thanks to the Ai media server system from Avolites.

Miami-based lighting/video company idesign installed a grid of custom LED digital bars, HD video cabinets and LED dots that take content in from Avolites’ Ai media server system through the Ai Bondi dongle. Via the cross-platform software, idesign’s programmers were able to access the full power of the Ai media server, pre-programming an eye-popping experience that translated to the new Ai servers installed at the venue.


“Avolites’ technology is simply the best there is to create this kind of immersive, exciting environment,” observes idesign’s owner and lead designer, Michael Meacham. “We’ve been using Ai servers for six years now, and this system can handle the complex mapping that we throw at it project after project.”

Trio has some of idesign’s most imaginative programming yet. Meacham describes a grid of custom LED digital bars and video panels that start at the DJ booth and then climb onto the ceiling where they crisscross above the dance floor in a circular grid dotted with hexagonal LED tiles that create what he calls a “sweepy, mesmerizing experience that just keeps you in the moment. Ai’s mapping software capability is what really brings it all together, especially when you have custom LEDs that are installed in different directions in a very complex design. Only Ai can handle mapping this elaborate.”


Ruben Laine from Avolites’ US distributor, Group One Limited of Farmingdale, New York, engineered the Ai mapping for the Trio project, while Meacham handled the lighting system programming and content development. “The Avolites technology lets Ruben take video content from many different sources and map it into a single, coherent experience, without any distortion or artifacts,” Meacham explains. “It’s perfect.”

Meacham adds that Avolites Ai provides the ability to get incredibly granular with each individual lighting or video element in a design. “For instance, we can make each of the LED bars into a RGB fixture,” he says. “When video is not running, we can still use the LED digital bars for great RGB color effects and drive them through the effects engine of the lighting console.”


Meacham notes the club’s management and patrons alike have been extremely pleased with the visual and audio outcome. Trio’s owner, Eric Gussin, says that the venue is now “up to Miami and New York nightlife standards.”

That’s not surprising since Meacham says idesign uses the Avolites technology on all of their projects including their most recent venue project in Houston. “We never do anything out of the box; we always design a project completely unique to each space,” he says. “Avolites is a critical tool for allowing us to do that every time.”

Trio can be found online at www.triocharleston.com, while idesign’s website is www.idesignproductions.com.