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Chroma-Q Inspire LEDs Provide Exceptional Light Quality for Royal Scottish National Orchestra’s New Home
UK – More than 130 of the award-winning Chroma-Q Inspire LED houselights have been installed in the Royal Scottish National Orchestra’s (RSNO) new, purpose-built facility in Glasgow, to provide exceptional light quality for both the orchestra and the audience. The new 600-seater home for Scotland’s symphony orchestra, constructed in the centre of Glasgow, is described as a ‘world-class’ venue which has been acoustically balanced to very strict standards. Opened in late 2015, it was built with funding from a number of public and private sector organisations.
The RSNO approached professional technology equipment reseller, A.C. Entertainment Technologies (AC-ET) Ltd., to propose a lighting solution for the new venue, with quality of light being a key element of the requirements.
“We were asked to deliver a solution that would be suitable not only for the audience, but also the orchestra, with their need for clean and pure light with no shadows, ensuring their sheet music was easy to read,” says AC-ET’s Ian Ferguson, who led the design of the Chroma-Q Inspire house lights system at the venue.
He continues: “The lighting also needed to be tuneable, allowing the colour to vary between cool and warm white. This reduced any reflection off the sheet music, taking away the risk of eye strain. In addition, the venue wanted to be able to add subtle coloured effects to the unused concert platform when small ensembles or soloists performed.”
Other key requirements included selecting a fixture that produced little or no heat – to ensure a comfortable physical environment for the musicians – and which was totally silent in operation, to meet the orchestra’s strict acoustic requirements.
Taking all of these criteria into account, Ian was convinced that the Inspire houselighting system would meet the RSNO’s very discerning technical requirements. He then used the DIALux evo lighting design software to model the new auditorium and calculate the type and number of fixtures needed.
A six-month trial was then undertaken with a number of fixtures, so all members of the orchestra could evaluate the quality and temperature of light, along with the reduction in heat – as well as to ensure that the original light calculations were correct. After the trial proved to be a success, AC-ET then supplied 134 Chroma-Q Inspire RGBW narrow lens (32 degrees output) fixtures, along with Inspire custom snoot/top hat and ceiling installation kits, so they could be mounted in acoustic baffles.
“With the Inspire, there is virtually no forward heat emanating from the fixture, which ensures the musicians’ comfort,” Ian continues. “Following the installation of the units, the orchestra can now practice and perform for longer periods. The Inspires are also convection cooled (no fans), which is perfect for a space requiring the ensemble to be the only audible sound. They also have, as standard, additional protection against electrical and audible noise. When measured, the Inspires had no acoustic impact on the venue, even when dimming.”
In addition to the tuneable white, the Inspires also have a rich colour palette that can transform the venue when used for small groups or orchestras.
“This Inspire lighting system offers the perfect balance of performance, flexibility and efficiency to meet the exacting requirements of a modern, professional orchestra,” says the Royal Scottish National Orchestra’s director of presentation and operations, Nick Lander. “As our music director recently commented, 'we're in heaven!'.”
The Inspires are being controlled by the venue’s building management system via a DMX512 interface. However, for events that require more complex effects, the fixtures are controlled by an external DMX512 lighting console.
The Inspire is an energy efficient fixture, and this is one of many measures designed into the new centre so that it can boast one of the best green ratings of any rehearsal/concert venue in the UK.
14th July 2016
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