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The Clair Brothers C8-Truefit System Lands American Music Theatre on the Cutting Edge of Audio Technology
USA – Since its debut in 1997, American Music Theatre is the only theatre of its kind in the country that features both touring concerts and original shows. Housing a 1,600-seat room that welcomes over 250,000 attendees a year, this popular venue hosts more than 300 live performances annually; performances that include Broadway tours, noteworthy rock acts, famous comedians, as well as many of yesterday and today’s award-winning performers. And when you combine all of that star power with original shows highlighting some of the most talented musicians, vocalists and dancers in the nation, no other theatre in the region offers a wider variety. It’s no wonder Clair Brothers has been there from the beginning, having been selected by American Music Theatre to provide the first (and to this day only) loudspeaker system in the venue. Now, 22 years later, Clair Brothers was called on again, this time for the upgrade to its groundbreaking C8-TrueFit loudspeaker system.
Part of the Theatre’s mission is to create diverse, extraordinary, immersive, live entertainment experiences and compelling musical productions. Says Jim Martin, executive director at American Music Theatre, “Twenty-two years ago, we installed a top-of-the-line audio system from Clair Brothers that has served us well. When we were first told about C8-TrueFit technology, we were hopeful about what it could mean for our room. We already trust Clair Brothers, so it wasn’t a huge leap of faith to know they would deliver on the promise that the custom-tailored nature of TrueFit was the right way to go. Of course, it’s exceeded our expectations. We now recognise this system as the best technology on the market today. It is truly an acoustically true fit.”
Clair Brothers TrueFit Technology is the first modular, bespoke waveguide providing the utmost customization in audio design. As a general rule, C8-TrueFit arrays feature singularly-configured, continuously-variable and asymmetric waveguides that are “designed-to-order” based on a room's distinctive shape. Clair Brothers TrueFit approach to venue-specific design customisation is made feasible through innovative 3D CAD software – a proprietary Clair Brothers engineering technology. While a totally custom system is a theoretically worthy ideal to strive towards, these technological advances now overcome prior constraints in required design time and real-world manufacturing. In today’s world, it’s easy to imagine a novel process like this that might involve 3D printing using plastic substrates, but at Clair Brothers wood reigns supreme as the superior horn and waveguide material. This is also the case for TrueFit technology. The ingenuity of Clair Brothers’ new installation system design is delivered via the medium of wood. What you end up with is always a perfectly unique, venue-specific, loudspeaker array that provides naturally even coverage for an entire audience.
“Any room presents challenges in that walls create reflective surfaces, which can deliver unwanted sounds. The TrueFit series, with its ability to guide audio, all but eliminates bounce-back from the sidewalls and was chosen for that exact reason.” Brandon Martin, AMT’s director of production continues. “As far as aesthetics, our room boasts unobstructed views from all seating options and a more contemporary design. The TrueFit system, with its compact size and impressive results, fits naturally into our room and does not detract from any audience or performer sightlines. It has the added benefit of looking sharp, too!”
For the install Clair Brothers joined forces with Lab.gruppen and Lake Processing Software, making for a powerful, yet highly efficient, system. In fact, as Jim explains, “We now have a system that has twice the output potential but uses forty-percent less electricity than was used before. This upgrade, with its significant electricity savings, is part of a $1.8 million facility improvement, including a new energy-efficient HVAC system, a new eco-friendly roof, updates to our lobby lights with more energy-efficient bulbs, and more. These improvements will significantly lessen our theatre’s carbon footprint while improving our patrons’ experience. It’s a win on all sides.”
Jim makes this important point: “There are many high-end audio providers throughout the country. Fortunately for us, the best is right in our backyard. We’re privileged to have been working with Clair Brothers for the past 22 years and look forward to new and exciting ways we can continue to work together!”
photo: Brandon Martin
29th August 2018
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