Project News Headlines
Zion Mennonite Church Thrives with Renkus-Heinz IC Live Gen5
Canada – During the last quarter of the 19th century, German-speaking Mennonites from Russia began settling the area around what is now the city of Winkler in south-eastern Manitoba, about 75 miles south-west of Winnipeg and a dozen miles north of Cavalier County, North Dakota. Mennonites continued to settle in the area and today constitute the overwhelming majority of the population. To serve this growing congregation, in 1981, Zion Mennonite Church built a new house of worship at Schanzenfeld, a small community a few miles south of Winkler.
The region has continued to grow, and Zion Mennonite Church's congregation grew apace. To accommodate its increase, the congregation recently expanded its facility and equipped it with a new Renkus-Heinz sound system designed and installed by Golden West Sound Design of nearby Altona.
"Sound quality was a high priority for the church from the beginning," recounts Myron Dyck of Golden West Sound Design. "But they didn't want something big and gaudy. Years ago, we installed one of the first generation of Renkus-Heinz ICONYX speakers in another church in the same community and had good success with that. So when I proposed a system based on Renkus-Heinz' IC Live Gen5 series, it was easy to point to previous success."
The main floor of the church seats 614, and the balcony seats 204, with 90 more seats in the choir loft. "Acoustically, the space is horrible," admits Dyck. "I initially measured close to 3.5 seconds of reverb time with no chairs installed. Now, with chairs in, it's down to 1.6 seconds-better but I'd still like it to be lower. It's not great for intelligibility, and we still need to do more acoustic treatment to address reflections off the rear walls, especially in the choir. But we would have had much bigger challenges without Renkus-Heinz's precision beam-steering."
Services at Zion Mennonite Church are mostly traditional and are presented in German and in English. Music is mostly choir and piano-there's no organ-but periodically a small band performs. "The congregation sees the direction the church may be going ten or 15 years from now, and they want to be prepared for it," Dyck notes. To ensure speech intelligibility and enough power and low end to meet current and anticipated requirements for music, Dyck specified a pair of Renkus-Heinz ICL-F-DUAL-RN arrays, which cover almost the entire room. The Golden West team installed a pair of Renkus-Heinz CFX12S 12-inch high-performance direct-radiating subwoofers into the stage risers, aiming a sub down each of the two side aisles. Five Renkus-Heinz CFX42 compact, high-performance, two-way stairstep speakers, spread across the front of the stage, serve as front fills.
"ICONYX speakers' horizontal coverage is fantastic, and this is a fairly wide church," Dyck explains. "If we had used a traditional single array in the center, or any point-source approach, we would need multiple speakers and more wiring and amplifiers. With just one pair of ICL-F-DUAL-RNs, we have a much cleaner installation, and they're slim and visually unobtrusive."
Dyck's team manages the ICL-F-DUAL-RNs with Renkus-Heinz RHAON II System Manager software, which includes the BeamWare III beam-steering calculation and simulation program. "With BeamWare, you can adjust four different beams," Dyck points out, "so I have three beams covering the main floor and one covering the balcony. The consistency of coverage across the floor and the balcony is great. When I walk around, I don't notice any changes."
When planning the subwoofer installation, Dyck wanted to ensure that the wooden stage would not resonate with the low frequencies. "They used special plywood for that stage," he observes. "We built subwoofer pockets underneath the stage that the subs slid into, and we sealed those up, which minimized the resonance." The CFX12S subwoofers and CFX42 front fills are managed with Linea Research 44M06 four-channel amplifier/processors.
"Renkus-Heinz was a fantastic choice for Zion Mennonite Church," Dyck asserts. "It's a clean, simple install, and the system sounded great after just a few small tweaks. The congregation is super happy."
21st August 2017
Podium de Vorstin Chooses Robe
The Netherlands – Podium de Vorstin is a purpose built live music venue right in the heart of ‘media city’ Hilversum in the Netherlands. Its interesting modern neo-ecclesiastical steel architecture was created by Architekten Cie, and ensures that it stands out as an aesthetic landmark as well as a popular entertainment venue.
Production assistant Robin von Zijl and technical manager Michael Sakkers were part of the team who chose 16 each of Robe Spiider LED wash beams and DL4S Profile luminaires in a recent technical upgrade. This replaced their previous moving lights, which were from a competitor brand and dated back to 2010 when the venue opened, built on the site of the former De Tagrijn youth centre which burned to the ground.
Vorstin’s action-packed production schedule includes at least three or four live gigs every weekend utilising its two performance spaces, of 850 and 300 respectively, which can be set up in a number of different configurations to stage a mix of bands, dance shows, stand-up comedy and cabaret and also includes regular radio and TV broadcasts.
There were two main reasons Robe was selected following a shoot-out just to underline that they were making the correct decision. The first was that Robe is now is on numerous band and artist lighting riders as the moving light preference, and the second is their excellent working relationship with Benelux distributor Controllux.
The majority of the 16 Spiiders and 16 x DL4S Profiles are in the main room’s overhead rig, with four of each type reserved for floor specials. Vorstin’s smaller hall from which Radio 2’s Saturday afternoon Music Café’ is broadcast, has some LEDBeam 100s that were installed in 2015. These are used five days a week, and in all that time there has only been an issue with one unit.
For the vast majority of incoming bands and artists Vorstin’s in-house team will design and operate lights explained Robin, so they are using the Robe’s extensively. “They are great lights with an excellent output,” he comments.
The Spiiders are run in extended mode giving individual pixel control which is great for eye and camera candy. “The zoom is fantastic and so fast,” stated Robin, adding that with these installed, they don’t really need to rely on parcans anymore when lighting a show!
The DL4S profiles he thinks are “quick, responsive and quiet” and all the technical crew are extremely pleased with them. The DL4Ss are used constantly for face and key lighting for which they are an efficient and highly flexible solution, and the new fixtures generally are making a big difference to how they can light all types of shows.
Robin first worked with Robe products when he was freelancing for leading Dutch rental company Ampco Flashlight, so he knows their reliability and quality-engineering from his experiences there.
Apart from the huge increase in flexibility at Vorstin, the crew also receives many positive comments from bands and artists about the new lighting. “They really notice the improvement,” confirms Robin.
The standard house rig is redesigned and completely re-rigged each year to ensure that shows can get plenty of variety in the look and feel and the most out of the various fixtures.
In picture: Jeroen van Aalst (Controllux) and Vorstin Production Assistant Robin von Zijl.
21st August 2017
PixelFLEX takes creativity outdoors at the Tuscaloosa Amphitheater
USA – As the largest outdoor theatre in Western Alabama with a capacity of 7,470 patrons, the Tuscaloosa Amphitheater is a premier location for arts and entertainment along the banks of the Black Warrior River. Originally constructed in 2010, the amphitheatre recently underwent a renovation of their video displays to better overcome the challenges associated with an outdoor venue. Needing a brighter and more powerful solution, the technical team worked with The ESB Group to install a modular and completely outdoor-rated video system using FLEXTour 6.9mm LED from Nashville-based PixelFLEX.
“This was the first time that we have worked with the Tuscaloosa Amphitheater as they were wanting to replace their existing projectors,” began Patrick Sobers, The ESB Group design engineer. “During the summer in Alabama, it often doesn’t get dark until about 8:30 or 9pm so the projection system wasn’t able to perform that well, and they couldn’t show content or provide video support during the daylight hours. This was a big factor in their decision to look at LED video technology, and with the FLEXTour system they can easily provide that support during the middle of the day in full sunshine.”
FLEXTour from PixelFLEX is a robust, high-definition and curveable LED video display designed specifically for the high demands of live entertainment production. With its unique rigging capabilities that allow for traditional and off-set configurations, each 500mmx1000mm tile is fully front-serviceable and its integrated climbing ladder allows for quick access to displays flown high overhead. Built with the highest standard in components including the new NovaStar A8s receiving card, FLEXTour is completely flicker-free making it one of the premier LED video design solutions available today.
Sobers continued: “I’ve personally known the leadership team at PixelFLEX for a while now, and during the bid process we were actually working with them on another project so we knew they would be our technology partner on this one too. We like how their technology has a great reputation in the touring market and as artists come through at the Tuscaloosa Amphitheater, their technical teams will be comfortable seeing FLEXTour on the rider.”
Getting started on the design, Sobers and the team at The ESB Group wanted to not only meet the expectations outlined by the amphitheatre staff, but they also wanted to offer a deeper layer of creativity. Knowing the venue would have multiple design needs for the outdoor LED video system, it was the expansive design options of the FLEXTour that made the project complete.
“The design specs we were given for the project had a maximum of 7.9mm as the largest acceptable pixel pitch, so we started speaking with PixelFLEX about what they might have to best fit the design,” added Sobers. “When they came back and showed us the FLEXTour 6.9mm we really liked its modular flexibility, the curve-ability of the LED video tiles and the fact that it was completely IP-65 rated. With its design innovations, the venue wouldn’t have to think of this as the installation of two separate LED video walls, but instead a creative solution to deploy the ideal LED video design needed for any outdoor event.”
With the LED video solution in place, it was time to complete the installation at the Tuscaloosa Amphitheater. Using the existing house steel structure fly bays, the amphitheatre also purchased a complete rigging system from Stagemaker to accompany their new LED walls. Using the new rigging, the team was able to easily integrate the FLEXTour LED tiles into the production design, while also giving them the option to be reconfigured and flown onstage, or anywhere else needed.
“For the initial design, we installed the FLEXTour system as two 16x9 rectangular walls hanging house left and right beside the main stage,” explained Sobers. “We used 30 tiles per wall, rigged on truss and motors, and the system is set up like a touring rig where they can reconfigure as needed and even take it off site for another event if they wish. They really like the ability to think outside the box as to how they want to deploy the LED video design, and they love the expandability and creativity of the FLEXTour system.”
Now in the midst of a busy production schedule, the technical team at the Tuscaloosa Amphitheater is able to create a myriad of LED environments for the outdoor live events. Needing a solution that offered both design creativity and technical functionality, Sobers is confident the FLEXTour LED video from PixelFLEX will stand the test of time.
“With their busy production schedule, the technicians at the amphitheatre actually take down the LED video after each show, but they can have it all back up and running within an hour and a half,” concluded Sobers. “It’s really a fantastic system and when you add together all of the design characteristics, FLEXTour really starts to set itself apart. With its curving ability, ease of rigging, plus the full outdoor IP65-rated aspects with the IP65 PowerCon True1 connectors and IP65 CAT5 connectors, FLEXTour is by far the most advanced outdoor LED video technology available today.”
18th August 2017
L-Acoustics Kara transforms Théâtre de Beaulieu
Switzerland – Opened in 1954, Lausanne’s Théâtre de Beaulieu is Switzerland’s largest and most important theatre. It has hosted some of the most famous stars of the second half of the 20th century including Edith Piaf, Ella Fitzgerald, Ray Charles and Quincy Jones. A new sound system forms part of a complete renovation of the theatre, with the choice ultimately focused on L-Acoustics, selected for its wide acceptance by visiting productions thanks to its coverage, sound pressure levels and impeccable sound quality. L-Acoustics Swiss certified distributor, Hyperson SA, was tasked with its design and installation.
In January 2016, the theatre’s owner Fondation de Beaulieu and Opus One, one of Switzerland’s leading event organisers, joined forces to manage the Théâtre de Beaulieu. With the support of the City of Lausanne, they embarked upon the renovation, which was planned over several years, and also put in place a more diverse schedule of productions for the venue, to include dance, major musical shows and comedies, as well as playing host to comedians and live music.
The specifications for the sound system were drawn up by a team comprising Nicolas Sandoz (production manager for Opus One), Antoine Marchon and Stéphane Gattoni from Zinzoline (co-technical directors of the Théâtre de Beaulieu), Philippe Warrand of scenographer Art'scéno and Fabian Schild, who heads up the fixed installation department at Hyperson.
"L-Acoustics Kara was chosen as the ideal solution for the room because it provides a perfect combination of SPL and coverage. It is also very rider friendly," says Fabian. “The installation had to take place very quickly during the theatre’s summer break, and at the same time as the stage machinery was being upgraded. We were able to integrate the system by opening up insets at the either side of the stage to leave the proscenium arch totally empty, which is what the theatre’s owners wanted.”
The system was designed with the aid of L-Acoustics Soundvision 3D acoustical simulation programme and comprises two hangs of 12 Kara each, positioned in the aforementioned insets, with four ground stacked SB18 in cardioid configuration directly below the main Kara hangs to cover the main auditorium, and a further two SB18, one either side, sited above the Karas to cover the balcony. Five X8s sit on the stage lip to provide front-fill, with a further two X8s looking after under balcony fill. The whole system is amplified by ten LA4X amplified controllers.
Sixteen X15 and three SB18, with amplification from seven LA8, completes the system. These are mobile and can be used either for additional coverage if required, or as a multifunctional speaker, particularly for dance productions.
“The theatre is very happy with the results we have achieved,” says Fabian. “And the new system has been welcomed unanimously by its productions.”
“With the new Kara system, the productions we welcome to Théâtre de Beaulieu don’t need any persuading to use our house system,” concludes the theatre’s sound manager, Nicolas Girardet. “Considering the multitude of production styles we host, and preferences of their technicians, this was an important challenge. The end result is a truly exceptional sound system."
17th August 2017
Australia’s Brolga Theatre goes multi-Platinum with Elation Platinum Seven
Australia – The Brolga Theatre in Queensland’s Maryborough in Australia is a typical regional venue; its 900 seat proscenium arch theatre hosts an international ballet troupe one night, Jimmy Barnes the next, and a local dance school the day after. Though the venue is just 17 years old, changes in technology mean replacement lamps are no longer available for their wash lights, leading the staff to assess how to upgrade for the future. The future, as they see it, is Elation’s Platinum Seven RGBWAC-UV LED wash light.
“We knew we have to move to LED and intelligent fixtures,” said Robert Haigh, operations technician at the Brolga. “We could afford to replace our wash, but not our profiles, so it was an easy decision to go to a moving fixture that could provide a wash, and in the case of Elation’s Platinum Seven, work as a profile in many senses.”
Twelve Elation Platinum Sevens have now replaced an amazing 48 Fresnels in the Brolga’s rig, leading to big changes in the crew’s workflow. “Since we’ve installed the Platinum Sevens, we haven’t had to focus a profile,” reported Robert. “We can focus the Platinum Sevens down to an 800mm circle on the floor from our wash position, so we can quite happily use them as a drum or lead singer profile. For a rock band, for example, we get all of the benefits of movers from the bling point of view, but when we turn off the wash, we can refocus as a profile.”
The Elation Platinum Seven uses 19 25W LEDs in red, green, blue, white, amber, cyan, and UV to provide lighting techs with incredible flexibility. Its 5 to 50 degree zoom angle and ‘silent mode’ make it a workhorse built for theatres. “Having the amber LED is critical for a good white,” observed Robert. “The market talks about RGB or CYM but the Platinum Seven is a mix of both; whichever you prefer, you’ve got. The UV is also one of the big selling points. We finally have a good UV wash on stage, and we’ve also been using it to make our colours ‘pop’ a bit more.”
Producing 38,500 Lux at one meter on five degrees minimum zoom, the Brolga’s Platinum Sevens have more than enough power to handle any production thrown at them. “They are, literally, brilliant,” commented Robert. “We now have more brightness on stage than we used to get from our 2K white wash, but we’re getting it across all colours. There’s good coverage with no holes as you walk across stage, and, while it’s not a shuttered fixture, there’s still no spill.”
The Brolga Theatre was introduced to the Elation Platinum Seven by Graeme Hicks of Entertainment Production Supplies, whose regular visits to The Brolga to demonstrate new equipment were often accompanied by staff from Australian Elation distributor Lexair. “Lexair and EPS have been great at keeping us up-to-date on what’s in the market” said Robert. “We have had great technical support from both of them, though we haven’t needed much because the products have been so intuitive and reliable.”
In picture: Robert Haigh, Operations Technician, Brolga Theatre.
17th August 2017
The A.P. Møller Foundation Makes Sound Investment in Education with Meyer Sound Constellation Acoustic System
Denmark – With the installation of Constellation acoustic system by Meyer Sound, Copenhagen's new Maersk Building demonstrates a major commitment to world-class dynamic and collaborative 21st century learning. Located at the Panum Institute's Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences on the North Campus of the University of Copenhagen, the striking new 15-storey Maersk Tower showcases Constellation in three distinct auditoriums. With more than 300 loudspeakers in three venues, the Maersk Tower boasts by far the largest education-focused Constellation installation in the world, — signalling an important step forward in the use of sophisticated acoustic technology in support of modern research and teaching.
All AV systems at the site were designed, engineered and installed by Stouenborg ApS of Copenhagen under the supervision of project leader Anders Jorgensen.
"The A.P. Møller Foundation's commitment to offering the most advanced acoustic solution to the Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences was critical to the success of the project," says Jorgensen. "Indeed, all principal parties involved in the project agreed that Constellation would be a catalyst for deeper and more collaborative learning experiences. By applying the most advanced audio technology, we are able to offer the ultimate flexibility for each room. Different acoustic settings can be customised to synchronise with the presentation, whether that is a lecture format, Q and A, discussion, or even a musical performance. With Constellation, there is no need for radio mics, eliminating the separation between teacher and learner and allowing free and perfectly intelligible communication even in an audience of 504 seats. The possibilities are endless in terms of collaboration and new dimensions in learning."
Funding for the $225 million addition to the Panum Institute came through a public-private partnership, with the A.P. Møller Foundation working closely alongside the Danish Building & Property Agency as the owner of the building on the project. The facility is occupied by the Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, and will be used for education as well as research activities.
"We expect that the Constellation systems, in conjunction with other state-of-the-art AV technologies within the auditoria, will introduce the highest possible quality of sound," remarks Pernille Illum, project consultant with the A.P. Møller Foundation. "This will drive further developments in teaching and communication, benefiting students as well as international conferences. We expect these auditoria to become widely known and sought-after for these unique qualities."
In the Maersk Tower auditoriums, the Constellation systems tailor the acoustic characteristics of the space with the touch of a button. In presentation mode, Constellation carries the voice of a lecturer throughout the room without need of a podium or headset microphone. In Q&A mode, both lecturer and students can hear each other without passing around hand-held microphones. In one auditorium with flexible seating (including tables as needed), a group discussion mode allows students around a table to hear each other clearly while masking distracting conversations from adjoining groups. Ideal acoustics can also be created for special evenings featuring musical or theatrical performances.
We expect that Constellation will provide an opportunity to increase communication among scientists and students by simplifying and supporting their verbal interaction," comments Lars Ole Munch Nissen, campus architect and team leader for the University of Copenhagen. "The systems also will support extended use of blended learning practices, known to help the study environment."
Constellation creates flexible acoustics using multiple distributed microphones, placed throughout the space, which feed signals to a powerful D-Mitri digital audio platform for processing by the patented VRAS algorithms. The acoustical signature of the room, as determined by the chosen preset, is generated by dozens of small, self-powered loudspeakers placed discreetly overhead and around the walls.
The equipment complement required by Constellation is proportional to room size. The largest auditorium, seating 550, deploys a total of 89 microphones, 124 loudspeakers and 19 networked D-Mitri frames, including core processing, D-VRAS and input/output. The other two auditoriums, seating 220 and 120, have systems with 32 microphones and 97 loudspeakers and 32 microphones with 88 loudspeakers. In addition to the ultra-compact MM-4XP and MM-4XPD self-powered loudspeakers, the systems also include MM-10XP subwoofers for full bandwidth reproduction. Presets with extended reverberation envelopes allow use of Constellation to create completely natural acoustical environments for musical performances, a possible alternate use for the auditoriums on special occasions.
A fourth, 120-seat space, features two CAL 32 self-powered steerable column array loudspeakers, widely hailed as a quantum leap forward in steerable array technology that offers an unprecedented level of accuracy both in its sonic quality and directionality. CAL is another example of unique solutions that develop from a Meyer Sound culture that is also dedicated to research and the application of science-based solutions to some of the most difficult problems confronting audio professionals. The last 20 Stella 8C ceiling loudspeakers and four MM-10XPs are spread out on two conference halls and a lecture hall at the top level at the 15th floor. Here, listeners can enjoy not only the sonic precision of Stella 8C ceiling loudspeakers but also the incredible view over Copenhagen.
The Maersk building's full AV infrastructure required installation of more than 22km of cable, most of it Cat6a to support current and future networked applications. Both the Meyer Sound D-Mitri and Biamp Systems Tesira (used for auxiliary systems and smaller rooms) platforms share the common AVB open-source networking protocols. Other key equipment specified by Stouenborg includes Panasonic video screens and projectors, a 4k-capable Crestron Digital Media System, Onelan media players, and Smart Graphics computer interfaces.
Throughout the project, Stouenborg qualified and evaluated competing products to ensure that each installed component not only incorporated the latest technology but also provided the highest overall quality and was best suited to the task. This was certainly the case with the active acoustics system. "There is no other solution in the world that comes close to Constellation," says Stouenborg's project leader, Anders Jorgensen.
Opened in January 2017, the Maersk Tower expands the total floor space of the Panum Institute by 40 percent and houses some of the world's most advanced facilities for medical education and research. The building's name reflects funding and planning support from the A.P. Møller Foundation which was established by Mr. A.P Møller, who founded the Maersk Group with his father, Captain Peter Maersk Møller.
In the past ten years, Stouenborg has become one of Denmark's most influential and award-winning consulting integrator firms for audio, light and AV. Stouenborg has pioneered the use of Meyer Sound's Constellation system in Europe, installing the first voice-lift system in Europe at Jyske Bank in Denmark. Stouenberg's Meyer Sound installation at Blue Planet, the largest aquarium in Northern Europe with more than 700,000 annual visitors, earned both the Commercial Integrator award in Las Vegas and InAVate award in Amsterdam. Among the Company's many prestigious projects with Meyer Sound are the new KPMG offices, the Danish National Maritime Museum, and the new Ragnarok Museum for pop, rock and youth culture.
16th August 2017
Detroit’s El Club Features Eclectic Music with Elation Lighting Rig to Match
USA – Graeme Flegenheimer, owner of El Club in Detroit, Michigan, fell in love with music at a young age. That may explain his diverse taste in music and the wide variety of acts that play at the popular live music venue, which has featured a customisable Elation Professional lighting rig since opening in 2016.
“I pride myself on El Club having an eclectic calendar,” says Flegenheimer, who has a background as a music publicist. “There’s not a typical night here. It’s always changing and Elation is able to meet every requirement of the artist coming in here and capture the vibe of the evening.”
Since opening in May of 2016, El Club has arguably become Detroit’s hottest night time venue with a mixture of acts that is attracting a wide audience. “It's really an amazing room that's giving a massive high-end light show experience to underground artists in a 300 capacity venue,” stated Adam LaBay of Future Weapons Laser & Lighting Design, who chose the Elation lights for the venue. “There's nothing quite like it and it has a very unique aesthetic.”
Built in 1950 as a banquet hall with an adjacent bar that dates from 1921, Flegenheimer renovated the space by restoring much of the interior and exterior of the building then completed the project by installing a state-of-the-art lighting and sound system.
El Club’s Elation lighting rig is as diverse as the acts that play beneath it: 12 ACL 360 Bar LED moving bar effects, 12 compact ACL 360i beam effects, eight Elar Ex Quad Par HP LED lights, six Sniper 2R effect lights, six Colour Pendant LED colour-changing downlights and eight Protron 3K LED strobes, all run from a HedgeHog 4S lighting console. An Antari HZ-350 hazer and Antari Z-500 II fog machine provide the mid-air projection canopy and fog effects.
“The goal of the lighting of the space is a reflection of the whole club,” Flegenheimer says. “I wanted everything to have an artistic statement.” When building the club, the owner worked with Adam LaBay and Taran Allen, who had built him a number of custom lighting rigs over the years in LA for special events. He invited them to build a custom rig for El Club and gave them free reign on the design. “I wanted to make a statement with a versatile rig unlike anything ever seen in a club this size,” he said. “I wanted something beautiful and they delivered.”
After the lighting was installed and Flegenheimer saw the rig in action on the first show, he says he was sold on the quality and versatility of the system. So are the various artists who play there. “When bands see what we have in the rig they’ll often leave their lighting in their truck, or just bring part of it in and plug into the system,” he said. “To me that speaks volumes about what Elation lights can provide. They can eliminate the need for a touring band to bring up their full lighting rig.”
Acts that play El Club are also pleased with the customisation of the system that LaBay and Allen have designed, Flegenheimer says. “It really allows for a freedom that they’re not used to. For bands to walk into the space and have a lighting rig that has the customisation we provide, they’re thrilled because it just enhances what is being presented through their music or art on stage. The amount of flexibility the Elation lights have provided in terms of creating a moody, Gothic vibe to a full-on strobing dance floor party to an epic rock 'n' roll show, is incredible. I’m super pleased.”
Flegenheimer states that press reviews and social media comments on the lighting have been good, but even more than that is the energy the lighting system brings. “There’s a lot more symbiotic nature between the audience and the artist on stage and I think the lights really tie that all together and really create that vibe,” he concludes. “I’m happy with what we have. It does everything we need and more.”
16th August 2017
OBA Completes Third Martin Audio CDD Install for Lee Valley Olympic Standard Facilities
UK – Old Barn Audio has completed its third Martin Audio CDD installation within Olympic class venues owned and operated by Lee Valley Regional Park Authority (LVRPA).
Following successful fit-outs of the Lee Valley White Water Centre and Lee Valley Ice Centre, they have now completed a challenging installation at Lee Valley Athletics Centre in Edmonton.
This required the company to install a 30 metre long roof truss section down the middle of the 200m six-lane oval track, six and a half metres up in the air, to support over half a tonne of Martin Audio’s popular CDD 12, CDD 10 and CSX sub woofers.
Built ten years ago at a cost of £15m, the Centre plays host to a wide range of athletes, operating as an elite venue for Olympians as much as a walk-in facility for the general public. Boasting 4,000 admissions a week, it is the busiest indoor athletics facility in the UK.
In such a wide open, cavernous venue, pristine sound is vital, as much for commentary at athletics meets as general messages and voice evacuation. However, the previous sound system was sadly lacking, as centre manager Mick Bond explained. “It piggy-backed onto the fire alarm system so it was not really fit for general purpose. It was a constant source of frustration and produced feedback whenever turned up.
“We managed to get funding for a replacement system and got various quotes. Old Barn Audio were both competitive on price and were tried and tested as far as we were concerned.”
Their project manager Neil Kavanagh knew that LVRPA wanted to main continuity with the proven CDD formula and his solution was to specify largely CDD12, enabling the CSX 118 sub to take care of the lower frequencies.
This he knew would not only provide the level of speech intelligibility required for commentary and handle background music during daytime training, but also have sufficient muscularity to handle for small concerts. “The venue is also available for hire so by providing a high spec. Martin Audio system this will facilitate a lot more business, leading to an excellent return on investment,” he said.
Kavanagh’s first conundrum was how to tackle the acoustics of an inherently ‘live’ cantilevered venue, while at the same time integrating the pre-existing sound system. He specified ten CDD12, two CDD 10 and four CSX 118, ensuring that the subs fired down at the rubber floor, which would provide absorption, while the full range boxes were arrayed and directed at the 500 raked seat stand on one side of the oval (avoiding the facing wall entirely).
The internally wired truss itself is suspended from four points, with two-tonne weight loading and safety bonds at each end. The speakers themselves are fixed using half couplers and are safety bonded.
“We assembled everything 1.5m off the ground and hoisted it into positions on four chain hoists and tethered it at the four hanging positions,” said Kavanagh. The installation required 200m of single 19-core cable running back to the power room and 400m of additional speaker cable on the truss.
The result is a potent solution devoid of any reflections, which comes as no surprise to Neil Kavanagh. “What I really like about the CDD series is the accuracy of dispersion. It has been designed to offer a lot of sound within the budget. Not only that, but the inherent coaxial speaker technology offers power coupled with a sonic performance that is unrivalled for the price.”
Control and amplification also followed the model set in the two other Lee Valley venues. As for integrating the pre-existing horn system this is now detailed to handle voice announcements only. “We have put a ducker into the main system so that it cuts for messages,” Neil Kavanagh explained.
In summary he said: “Now that the Lottery Funding has finished and venues built for the London Olympics need to stand on their own two feet, a powerful sound system such as this is a wise investment. We are also grateful to Martin Audio for the excellent support.
And according to Mick Bond the new Martin Audio system has proven extremely popular with the staff. “Although it was only recently installed it is already more than meeting our expectations,” he said.
14th August 2017
Rock City Studios Achieves Audio Goals with Renkus-Heinz
USA – Live music venue, recording studio, music school, party space, and community treasure-Rock City Studios does it all, supporting the local music community in Ventura County, California. Much of the action happens in one main room where Rock City Studios host shows by national and local acts, as well as recording and videotaping local bands' performances. But until recently, the community-oriented space had a serious issue: its old PA system wasn't getting the job done. The solution was elusive until the Rock City team discovered Renkus-Heinz loudspeakers.
"This space was a hodge-podge of different businesses," comments Rock City Studios co-owner and general manager Brett DeCarlo. "We've renovated it and made it more kid friendly, cleaner, bigger, better, faster and stronger. Everything goes on in our main room, which holds 300 people standing. We have big concerts in here, often with national bands and local support. There are mosh pits and people jumping up and down and going as hard, and having as much fun, as they could possibly have."
"This is an interesting room, and it's gone through many iterations," agrees Rock City front-of-house engineer Mike Brown. "The fundamental problem we had was that the previous PA system was a traditional point-source array. We had a sweet spot in the middle of the floor but if you wandered too far front or back, you got out of that sweet spot. To get the levels that we needed for the bands that play in this area, we had to double up on our conventional PA system, and that led to comb filtering and interference, as we tried to fill the space with volume to get over the crowd levels. We also suffered from loss of high end frequency response, poor stereo separation, and resonant frequencies. At first we attributed it to the room, which has anomalies, but when we installed the Renkus-Heinz system, it became very clear that we had been suffering from a dated PA system."
DeCarlo and Brown attended the Winter NAMM show in Anaheim in search of a solution and all but stumbled over it. "Brett heard the Renkus-Heinz system in the Anaheim Hilton hotel, and he was just floored by how fantastic it sounded," Brown relates. "He brought me over to check it out. The Hilton lobby is an odd shape, and what was amazing was not only the sound of the Renkus-Heinz system but the ability to keep sound from bleeding into the surrounding areas. I could carry on a conversation on the upper balcony, yet go down to the floor in front of the band and hear this fantastic sound."
The Rock City team visited Renkus-Heinz' NAMM booth, and the manufacturer put them in touch with Jeff Miranda at Pacific AV. "Jeff did a phenomenal job," Brown praises. "The Hilton system used Renkus-Heinz IC2-series loudspeakers, and we thought, 'great, we have unique obstacles, so what would be better than a steerable array for Rock City?' But Jeff, having become almost part of the family, realised that the IC2 wasn't appropriate for this venue. He immediately steered us toward the Renkus-Heinz CFX101LA modular point-source array. He built a PA with the CFX101LA that sounded so fantastic, we were immediately sold."
With the flexibility to be flown, ground-stacked, or pole-mounted, the CFX101LA combines the performance and pattern control of a line array with the clarity of a point-source system in a compact, sleek, affordable design. Rock City's system employs two CFX101LAs. A pair of Renkus-Heinz CFX15S 15-inch high-performance subwoofers, mounted above the arrays, generate the powerful low-end the venue required. "With the previous system, the sound was too muddy, and we didn't have that huge feeling, what I call the 'heart punch,' when you feel it in your chest," avers DeCarlo. "With the CFX system, it's a night-and-day difference. The stereo image is a lot wider. The clarity, especially in the high end, is there. The low end, too; you get that heart punch, that kick in your stomach that we'd been missing. We're at a level of completion now."
"The CFX101s allowed me to adjust the angles so I've got fantastic coverage from the front of the venue all the way to the back," expounds Brown. "People who were here with our previous PA and with the Renkus-Heinz system are amazed that they can walk around and get the same sound anywhere. We do everything here from punk rock to praise bands, and everyone who comes through comments on how great this venue sounds. We've attracted more national acts, and the kids are amazed at the quality of the sound that they get. With the Renkus-Heinz system, we can meet some of the rider requirements for the bigger name acts that look for places to play outside of L.A. Now this truly is a professional venue."
While sound was the most important factor in choosing Renkus-Heinz, it wasn't the only consideration. "The system has to look cool too," DeCarlo insists. "Our new Renkus-Heinz system looks great, sounds great, and is built to last. We'll take that."
14th August 2017
ETC embarks on a voyage with Norwegian Cruise Line
This summer, Norwegian Cruise Line welcomed the spectacular Norwegian Joy to its fleet. A custom-built ship for the Chinese cruise market, Joy offers a luxurious experience for up to 3,850 guests. The ship features the first racetrack at sea, multiple bars, restaurants and casinos, a shopping centre, a water park and a theatre. To help set the right mood for the ship’s many and varied attractions, the vessel is equipped with multiple lighting control desks and an array of lighting fixtures from ETC.
At 167,725 tons and 326 metres (1,069 feet) long, Joy is one of the largest cruise ships ever built, and was constructed by major German shipbuilder Meyer Werft in Papenburg, Germany. AV systems integrator Wärtsilä Funa Solutions was appointed to deliver the entertainment systems for the ship’s numerous attractions. The Funa team specified a total of ten ETC lighting control consoles, positioned in strategic locations throughout the cruise ship. Sarah Wegner, a freelance lighting programmer and event technology specialist, was entrusted with the installation, setup and programming of the desks. Reliability was the over-riding factor in determining the choice of consoles. "It’s essential that the consoles function reliably, since it’s not possible to get a replacement when the ship is on the high seas,” explains Wegner. “There is a mobile Ion, which could be exchanged in an emergency, but otherwise you have to wait until you’re back on dry land."
In the ship’s theatre, which provides an experience to rival venues on the mainland, an ETC Eos RPU is used for primary lighting control, with a Gio console as backup. Ion and Gio consoles are dotted around the ship for lighting control for a wide range of the other on-board attractions. The requirements are quite diverse: the Supper Club restaurant offers an intimate theatre experience, the Spice H2O bar takes inspiration from summer beach parties, there’s an aqua park with waterslides, a small atrium stage and an outdoor disco. An ETC lighting control desk is also used in the Galaxy Pavilion, which transports visitors into a virtual entertainment world featuring thrilling interactive experiences, including racing simulators and a virtual roller coaster.
“The theatre shows are programmed by the production team,” says Wegner. “For all the other areas I have saved cues and stored them either on a server or in the desk.” Media Tubes installed in the Galaxy Pavilion and Spice H2O for effect lighting take advantage of Eos’ pixel mapping capabilities. To achieve the desired looks, Wegner created the Media Tubes on an Ion control desk in pixel mapping view. “Eos software is ideal for this,” adds Wegner. “I was able to check in the preview how the parameters affected the overall picture. I prepared everything in there and saved some sample cues.”
Additionally, the Galaxy Pavilion, Supper Club and atrium are equipped with a selection of ColorSource Spot and PAR luminaires. These four-colour LED fixtures are capable of supplying bright, colourful light that can be tailored to suit the distinct needs of the different venues. And, it’s not just the cruise passengers benefiting from ETC technology on Norwegian Joy. Behind the scenes, in the crew disco, Wegner has programmed an Ion console with a selection of different cues, comfortably retrievable by the crew from the server.
photos: Harald Hohenthal/Meyer Werft, Rick Diaz/Norwegian Cruise Line and Fiebak-Kremer/ Norwegian Cruise Line
11th August 2017
Horizon AVL Counts on Dante Audio over IP for Networking Worship Audio at Fellowship Alliance Chapel
USA – Horizon AVL, a full service systems design and integration firm specializing in systems for houses of worship, schools, stadiums and corporate campuses, has installed a Dante Audio over IP network from Audinate to accommodate all multichannel audio routing, distribution and management without the time and labour expenses of a legacy system.
A long-time Horizon AVL client, Fellowship Alliance Chapel recently relocated to a newly built house of worship in Medford, NJ. As a new construction, Horizon AVL had the enviable opportunity to design and integrate all audio, video and lighting systems to their specifications, with the goal of maximising flexibility, capacity and quality across the entire architecture. On the audio side, Horizon AVL also had future growth in mind, with the expectation that Fellowship Alliance Chapel would add square footage and additional channels to accommodate more worship services on campus.
Along with building out an extensive Dante network built to handle up to 64 channels of low-latency digital audio distribution, Horizon AVL added Dante Via to the mix. Audinate’s answer to low-cost computer-to-computer networking, the forward-looking firm saw an opportunity for Fellowship Alliance Chapel to use Dante Via for moving Spotify streams and other digital music around the facility. Dante Via also cleanly integrates with Renewed Vision’s ProPresenter 6 software, a PC- and MAC-based media and lyric presentation system that is popular in houses of worship.
“One thing we focus on at Horizon AVL is remaining on the cutting edge of technology, as changes happen fast,” said Joshua Kell, CEO, Horizon AVL. “We want to offer our clients a way to seamlessly move forward with digital formats and technologies that allow them to accomplish more. When we looked at audio networking, Dante stands out as the most versatile option. They continue to add products and manufacturers under their umbrella. The list keeps growing, and they continue to find new ways to add more channels, more equipment and more opportunities to the network.”
Kell points to the fact that Dante has addressed the desire to extend networking straight to the loudspeaker, which not long ago was considered a long-term vision around the industry. Horizon AVL specified Dante from a front of house Allen & Heath S7000 mixer through to steerable line arrays from PreSonus, which integrate Dante-enabled amplifiers to slim down the infrastructure.
“This is the first line array to move beyond steerable FIR filtering for sound management, and this is the first house of worship to integrate a steerable line array with Dante capability,” said Kell. “In fact, the only analogue component is a legacy stage box that runs wire to the Allen & Heath S7000, and it’s all digital from there, including our Shure ULXD wireless microphone system. It doesn’t move out of Dante.”
This provides several benefits, beginning with Horizon AVL’s integration work through to the weekly worship services using Dante to move audio around the campus. This includes a separate Allen & Heath GLD console used for live TV broadcasts that is fully Dante-enabled, eliminating the need for analogue splits in the integration phase.
“We knew immediately that we wanted everything running over shielded Cat6A network cable to accommodate 4K video, so we worked with the electrical contractors to run the appropriate conduits to house network cable for Dante and all video needs,” said Kell. “As we starting running the cable to support the Dante audio network, it quickly became clear how much time and labour we would save. It would have taken three weeks to do it the conventional way, considering the soldering, testing, snaking and signal splitting required. With Dante, the total time to run the cables, punch it down, and configure the network and switches was well under a week – and that includes the consoles and other equipment on the Dante network. In terms of overall costs, we easily saved one-third the amount compared to the traditional way.”
Beyond the flexibility of using the Dante network to route, distribute and manage audio – as well as Dante Via and Dante Virtual Sound card to incorporate computer platforms into the mix – Kell points to scalability and audio quality as two important benefits for Fellowship Alliance Chapel. For scalability, Kell is only using about one-fifth of the 64-channel capacity for Dante signals in the Allen & Heath S7000, and he expects to transition that mixer to a higher capacity 128x128 Dante card as more channels are added to the system.
“Before Dante, the Fellowship Alliance Chapel team was dealing with numerous problems that required continual work around adding transformers, isolating hum and managing ground noise,” said Kell. “That all goes away in the digital realm with Dante, because phase grounding issues are eliminated all the way to the electrical panel. The speech and overall intelligibility through to the steerable line arrays is top-notch – you can hear every syllable, every nuance in the vocals and every instrument. The clarity is there, as is the low latency that is important in live worship. It’s night and day from their old sanctuary, and they immediately were comfortable with how Dante can work in a worship AV scenario.”
10th August 2017
Ireland's National Event Centre upgrades to an Avolites Arena
Ireland – Ireland's largest events venue outside of Dublin, the INEC Killarney, has recently purchased an Avolites Arena console as part of a major upgrade to the venue's house lighting rig and control system.
The sale of the British manufacturer's largest and latest lighting console was made by Avolites' accredited UK reseller A.C. Entertainment Technologies (AC-ET). AC-ET worked with the INEC Killarney to supply the new house rig and control network.
"The INEC Killarney has just installed over 100 ProLights LED moving heads and static LED fixtures, plus a full conventional rig featuring ETC and ARRI units," says the venue's house lighting designer, Kieran Somers. "We needed a console that had the power and processing ability to run the new system. Often, I have to design full lighting productions from scratch within very tight deadlines, so the console had to be intuitive to allow me to design and program effectively."
Avolites is known throughout the lighting sector as a leader in intuitive control interfaces. Its consoles are both powerful and accessible to users and the brand's own software, Titan, is designed to allow a user to work in a visual way that best suits them.
"I really like the Arena's quick-to-access interface," says Somers. "It allows me to design and program quickly and also means I can live-control and design rapid-fire events to a very high standard."
The Arena has the largest control surface in the Avolites console range. Alongside its main touch screen, a second touch screen provides an additional workspace window that also labels the screen's adjacent macro buttons and rotary pots.
The fully assignable playback encoder pots allow intuitive control of channels and effects. The six LCD screens display electronic legends for 30 faders, for speedy access to playbacks, fixtures and palettes. A brand new optical output means the Arena is equipped for fibre connections, an important feature for the venue, which with a 3,000 capacity, demands a control infrastructure which maintains signal integrity over long distances.
The Arena also offers multi-user compatibility, allowing the console to be used as a master, back-up or extra programming surface. This considerably reduces programming time by allowing multiple Titan programmers to work simultaneously, before the main console takes charge.
"The Arena is so far ticking all the boxes," says Somers. "I am really looking forward to exploring the console's operating capabilities when we finally get some more down time in the venue!"
Aaron Cripps, AC-ET's regional sales representative for Eire who dealt with the sale, says: "We're pleased to be able to supply everything INEC needed, from our one-stop portfolio of entertainment technologies. We pride ourselves on offering customers a range of popular and leading brand solutions to choose from for their project – such as Avolites – to suit differing applications, technical needs and budgets."
The first artist to be supported with the INEC Killarney's new rig and control set-up was Spotify's 2016 Artist of the Year and winner of Choice Music's Song of the Year prize, Gavin James.
The venue has also hosted national and international music stars including Tom Jones, Snow Patrol, Kenny Rogers and The Script, whose lighting designer Jamie Thompson is an avid Avolites user.
10th August 2017
Audiologic and CIS Provide Real AV for Virtual World of XVR Training
UK – The effective training of fire and rescue service personnel is of the utmost importance and in the UK, fire services constantly strive to improve methods, to ensure that they can make the greatest possible contribution to the safety of the communities in which they operate. Innovations such as XVR's virtual reality simulation technology platform (a by-product of gaming industry software) which assists in the training of safety professionals involved in crisis management and emergency response, are becoming essential tools. Incident commanders and operational groups can be provided with realistic computer-generated training experiences, which, when used in conjunction with well-designed AV systems, are of exceptional value. Based in Delft in The Netherlands, XVR Simulation is Europe's market leader in simulation software and has teams working in France and the UK.
When Hereford and Worcester Fire and Rescue Service was in the process of creating XVR training rooms at Droitwich fire station, they invited integrators County Infrastructure Services (CIS TECH) with whom they already had an excellent relationship, to discuss AV provision for the installation. A number of first floor offices were converted into training pods for firefighters and CIS installed the necessary equipment for an analogue surveillance system that kept within a strict budget. During the course of the project, Andy Lewis of Audiologic advised CIS with regard to elements of the audio provision and supplied some of the component products. Hereford and Worcester were delighted with the install and won an award for training excellence but the process highlighted to Nick Evans of CIS that moving towards an IP based surveillance and digital audio system would significantly improve any future XVR solutions.
Following the success of the project, CIS was recommended by Hereford and Worcester to other county fire services and Shropshire Fire and Rescue Service made contact to discuss its ideas for uprating the XVR system at its Telford training and development centre. The centre is widely regarded as a beacon of training excellence and wished to enhance its facilities with professional high quality AV equipment that incorporated network and surveillance components to achieve a fully integrated solution.
Having drawn conclusions about how the delivery of XVR could be improved, CIS brought onboard Audiologic from the outset. Having supplied certain elements for the Droitwich project, sales and marketing manager, Andy Lewis, was already familiar with the operation of XVR and in consultation with CIS and station manager Carl Franks, Andy Lewis and technical support engineer Max Yanakiev designed a new digital/IP based system that operated between the control pod, from which two commanders monitor onscreen the simulated action and two separate Incident Pods.
The beauty of the solution lay in carefully selecting and combining products from across Audiologic's range to create a very neat and highly effective system that achieved its aims cost effectively and with great efficiency. As well as all cables, racks, amplifiers and speakers, Audiologic supplied DSP by Ecler (MIMO 88 RS232) and wireless microphones and in-ear monitoring by Shure (QLXD 14/153 and PSM 900 respectively) and provided CIS-AV with a detailed schematic to work to.
Nick Evans of CIS offered this view: "XVR really is a game-changer in training terms. It's a valuable, cost-effective way way of immersing trainees in incredibly realistic scenarios that challenge and develop decision-making and communication. Used in conjunction with high quality professional AV equipment, the results are fantastic. Consulting with Audiologic on the AV provision for the Shropshire project was of great benefit. The schematic that they produced was excellent and their collaboration at every stage helped to deliver the project on time. This system very much takes the XVR experience to the next level and we have recently worked with Audiologic on our third project of this kind. It is clear that our partnership in this area is paying dividends, we've received considerable interest in similar schemes and look forward to working with Audiologic on many more."
Andy Lewis, sales and marketing manager at Audiologic added: "We have an excellent relationship with our valued customer CIS and the installation at Telford is a great illustration of how good consultation and careful system design achieves great results. We worked closely with CIS and the station manager to make sure the system fulfilled the precise requirements of the brief and it's clear from the positive reaction to the finished project that it's been a great success."
10th August 2017
Making Light at Comics Station
Belgium – Belgian creative visual design practice Painting with Light was commissioned to design and install lighting and video at the new 6,000 square metre Comics Station Antwerp indoor theme park, located in the city’s famous central station complex.
The Painting with Light team collaborated closely with Panasonic Belgium on the AV elements and fully specified the lighting elements of the project, which involved nearly 1,300 fixtures being used to illuminate over 60 attractions. These are spread across four stories and six zoned entertainment areas.
Painting with Light also took on the role of projection consultants, following Panasonic’s initial study of the building and specification of the hardware, which included 22 projectors and 86 LCD screens. This entailed fine-tuning the final positions, choosing the lenses and calculating alignment, beam angles, focuses, throw distances, etc. Painting with Light commissioned AV specialist Hans Cromheecke to assist with this task.
At the heart of the attraction are Belgium’s best loved comic heroes, characters like Suske en Wiske (Spike and Suzy), Jommeke, The Kiekeboes, the globally acclaimed multi-character Smurfs, bandit-chasing Lucky Luke and a celebrity flourish with Urbanus.
This is the first theme park worldwide to be located in a fully functioning international train station, offering a unique collection of art, ideas, fun and interactive experiences for all!
Luc Peumans led the Painting with Light team as production lighting designer, with Kristof Devriese overseeing the lighting installation and everything related to it as the associate LD.
The many challenges of this project included finding exactly the right lighting ambience to highlight the zones and multiple interactive elements bringing the original drawn characters to life, engaging visitors on a journey of adventure.
The busy, high-energy, almost trippy environment fuses the sometimes thinly disguised fantasy worlds with some pithy social, cultural and political observations and comments over the years, mixing cerebrally with humour and incisive wit.
In physical terms, the 22.5 metres of headroom (which also features the world’s tallest indoor slide) in the centre and highest part of the space was a major consideration for lighting, as were the multiple projections and the lighting around them.
Another challenge was the rigging positions for lighting and projectors, which had to be chemically fixed into the walls and ceiling areas.
Being a busy international railway station, the rules and regulations, health and safety requirements, etc. were super-tight, and the entire design process was meticulously planned, prepared and revised over two years.
Then, once green-lighted, everything had to be delivered, installed, programmed and ready for opening in a time frame of around three months.
In developing an overall lighting concept to ensure the already highly stylised personalities of the comic characters stood out even more, Luc, Kristof and the team drew on their multi-disciplinary experiences working on theatrical shows, attractions and pop performers to create a totally unique lighting vibe for Comics Station.
“It is a really great example of referencing aesthetic threads and treatments from all these diverse genres of lighting and using them in fresh and imaginative ways,” stated Luc, who is extremely pleased with the results.
When it came to choosing hardware, as well as energy-consciousness, long-term maintenance and reliability being high on the requirement list, so were compact dimensions and the need for lights to be unobtrusive.
Gantom is a manufacturer focused on making lighting products geared to the demands of the themed entertainment industry and currently has some of the smallest LED and other fixtures on the market. A selection of these, from between 1W and 4W LEDs in fixed colours to dynamic whites and RGBWs, are being used for highlighting the numerous attractions and different zones.
The lighting setup included units from the standard Gantom range as well as their Precision and Storm ranges.
Painting with Light is also the exclusive Belgian distributor for this specialist brand, so the service and support package is an integral part of the lighting supply.
Around ten different types of Gantoms are rigged throughout Comics Station, including floods, spots, pinspots, gobo projectors and ellipsoidals.
For the atrium space and some of the larger areas, bigger and more powerful fixtures were needed, so different Chauvet LED PARs were selected together with their Rogue R1 Spot and Wash LED moving heads plus Chauvet’s Maverick spot and wash moving lights.
Painting with Light has had good experiences using Chauvet products for other attractions like the Heidi Rollercoaster at Plopsaland de Panne, and so they were a logical choice. This project saw some great teamwork with the Chauvet distribution centre in Ghent, so deliveries were co-ordinated quickly and efficiently.
“Chauvet has a wide range of fixtures, the ability to respond fast and be flexible,” commented Kristof adding that he worked closely with Steve Batsle from Chauvet Belgium.
All the lighting is run via seven networked Pharos LPC1 controllers programmed by Steve Debusschere, which are linked to a wider building / attractions control system.
It was the first time Kristof used a lot of these fixtures, so a demo set-up was running throughout the specification period. This meant fixtures and their effects could be rigorously checked as well as on-site testing completed in conjunction with Dieter Venderickx, commissioned by Painting with Light as their overall technical installation manager for the Comics Station project.
Cabling was another challenge, everything had to be neat, yet ultimately traceable and secured in the ceilings, where in most cases it is painted to blend in with the walls.
The actual installation period on site for lighting was ten weeks, with Kristof and Painting with Light co-ordinating between four and eight crew to execute this portion of the work.
Luc sums up: “It was great to be part of the Comics Station design team, led by Wim Hubrechtsen and we are all very proud of the results. This installation really energised the team and is an excellent example of Painting with Light working as a multi-disciplinary, integrated design and build partner for leisure and entertainment lighting and video installations.”
photos: Tijs Posen
9th August 2017
Central Lakes College Theatre Adds Versatility with Chauvet Professional
USA – Located in the geographical heart of Minnesota, Central Lakes College embodies the state’s long-standing tradition of supporting community involvement in the arts. This spirit is very evident in the college’s two theatres, which not only showcase the work of its own drama department, but also host community theatrical productions, as well as recitals, rock concerts and a wide range of other performances. To support this diversified schedule, the theatre’s lighting designer Ben Kent recently upgraded its rig by adding flexible Chauvet Professional LED fixtures, supplied by Monkey Wrench Productions.
“Our theatre production program began 48 years ago, and it’s always embraced a variety of shows,” said theatre director Patrick Spradlin. “The college produces five or six theatrical productions a year, which are performed in either our proscenium space (The Chalberg Theatre) or our black box space (The Dryden). Our productions range from small one-person shows to full-scale musicals, or anything in between. Then we have a wide range of community theatre events and concerts that take place here, so we wanted Ben to look for fixtures that could give us the most flexibility possible.”
This search led Kent to Monkey Wrench Productions. “I went over a lot of different options with Monkey Wrench,” he said. “They were particularly enthusiastic about the Chauvet fixtures, so I did some research. I was impressed by the amount of thought that had obviously gone into the design of these reasonably priced fixtures.”
Kent purchased 12 Ovation E-910FC RGBA-Lime colour mixing ellipsoidals and 18 COLORado 2 Solo RGBW wash fixtures for Central Lakes. The fixtures are used primarily in the main Chalberg Theatre, but some are moved to the Dryden Theatre black box when needed.
“We currently have the 12 Ovations mounted on our FoH Catwalk providing front light for the main stage,” said Kent. “This allows us a lot of flexibility for creating multiple acting areas on stage. The Ovations replaced some very old ellipsoidals that we had in our theatre, and the difference is night and day. The colour engine is superior to other fixtures in the same price range. It’s capable of producing brilliant whites, warmer subtle tones and vibrant saturated colours. The versatility of color changing means that we don’t have to hang and focus as many different fixtures as we did when we used conventionals.”
The 18 COLORado 2 Solo washes are mounted on the three electrics over the stage. Typically, six of the fixtures are positioned on each bar, but this is readily changed for different productions.
Kent has been impressed by the COLORado’s color rendering capabilities. “I really like this fixture’s homogenised beam,” he said. “The even wash I’m able to get is far superior to anything I could create using our older Fresnels.”
Central Lakes College first used its Ovation and COLORado fixtures for a school production of Cat on a Hot Tin Roof. “These were ideal fixtures for this show, since the light has to change in real time as the drama progresses,” said Kent. “Thanks to the colour rendering capabilities of these lights, we were able to create the subtle changes in colour temperature required without rigging multiple lights in different colours.”
The ability to change colours quickly and easily is something that is of paramount importance to Kent, as well as Spradlin and Technical Manager George Marsolek. “I think all of us are proud of how the theatre serves the college and community in variety of ways,” he said. “For this reason, versatility is really what’s important to us. We appreciate how these lights make it easy for us to switch between very different types of productions without having to recolour.”
9th August 2017
DiGiCo upgrade for Theatre of Marcellus
South Africa – The Theatre of Marcellus at Emperors Palace, Johannesburg recently acquired a DiGiCo SD9 with a D2-Rack on stage, a D-Rack at FoH and a Waves SoundGrid Server ONE, all supplied by Kyle Robson from DWR Distribution.
In 13BC, Julius Caesar Augustus built the original Theatre of Marcellus as an open-air theatre where locals and visitors alike were able to watch breath-taking performances of drama and song. The theatre was the largest and most important theatre in Ancient Rome and was an impressive example of what was to become one of the most pervasive urban architectural forms of the Roman world.
Johannesburg’s modern-day version is no less impressive, with a thousand theatregoers enjoying show-stopping entertainment in the 17-tiered auditorium, which boasts lavish seating and exceptional sightlines. The theatre recently underwent a R6 million transformation, which included a new audio system of which the SD9 is a major part.
“This is an exciting upgrade,” says DWR’s Jaco Beukes. “It allows the theatre to access 48 Mic/Line inputs, 16 Line outputs and eight AES outputs on stage. At FoH, engineers have access to 40 local Mic/Line inputs, four AES inputs, four AES outputs and 16 Line outputs. Recording and playback is a breeze with the DiGiCo UB MADI in place, allowing anyone to record and playback up to 48 channels. To top off this amazing system, they also have access to Waves plug-ins, which is built into the console with the SoundGrid Server One handling all the processing.”
Ken Crossley, the contracted in-house engineer at The Theatre of Marcellus, says he has always been a fan of the DiGiCo brand. “I particularly enjoy the flow of the desk,” he says. “And having an analogue background, it has been quick and easy for me to find my way around the console.”
More often than not, engineers find there simply is not enough time to have to search for the things on a console. With DiGiCo, Ken has found that everything he needs is at his fingertips and exactly where he would expect to find it. Should anything feel slightly too far, he simply creates a macro to bring it closer. The venue currently run monitors from FoH and this makes it even more critical to work on a desk that is laid out logically, with an effective and fast workflow. As a result, Ken has been very happy to run each show on the SD9.
“To ensure we continued with the original spirit of this theatre, the DiGiCo SD9 was the obvious choice,” says Robert Wilkie, the Theatre’s technical manager. “The decision was based on the ongoing support we received from DWR and because DiGiCo is so versatile, powerful and one of the most popular desks amongst top audio engineers worldwide.”
“The significant renovations of recent times in the audio department guarantees that this world-class theatre will remain one of Gauteng’s finest for years to come,” concludes DWR’s Kyle Robson. “Well done Emperors Palace, we are looking forward to many more spectacular shows.”
9th August 2017
New York City’s Intimate Arka Room Dazzles with Elation Lighting
USA – Arka Lounge operated for 16 years as one of the more successful nightspots in the Washington Heights area of upper Manhattan. Re-branded last December as Arka Room, owners of this sophisticated, intimate place to party are hoping for the same run of success they enjoyed for nearly two decades.
As the area has changed, the venue has changed with it. Now Arka owners seek to engage old and new patrons alike with an updated design that features a dynamic Elation Professional lighting system. “We wanted to create an atmosphere that is unique to this space,” stated Tirso Pelaez, owner of Tirso Lighting, the design and integration company responsible for the design makeover. Pelaez served as lighting designer on the project and says his responsibility was to create the best lighting solution that he could for the space. “Though it was somewhat confined, we felt that it was important to make the space seem bigger while not losing the intimacy of the original Arka Lounge,” he said, adding that Arka Room wanted to retain its new, unique identity while still forming connections for people who have been coming to Arka Lounge for years.
Already a known name in NYC, Arka Room, capacity about 200, differs from the original Arka Lounge in that the current space is a bit smaller and was designed as a modern day “speakeasy” type of club. “It's in the mould of an old speakeasy where in order to get to Arka Room you have to go through the restaurant (Wahi Oyster) to get to the exclusive club space,” Pelaez says. “It gives an exclusive feel to it.”
Besides hosting live events weekly, the space can be hired for private parties, weddings, and other special events. “In the area where Arka Room is in NYC, there are few live production venues so it’s an advantage that they can have live artists. It’s a venue that pays special attention to lighting with a high level of production. When you open the door, you are struck by a dazzling light show that works with the music to create a truly immersive experience,” Pelaez explains.
Tirso Lighting, based in NYC, has been around since 2009 and has been using Elation lighting since its inception. Arka Room’s small size required a compact moving light effect and Pelaez found it in the Elation E Spot III LED moving head, twelve of which are in the venue, primarily over the dance floor. “Its brightness is a good match for the size of the room,” he says of the 90W fixture which houses a cool white LED engine plus dichroic colours and rotating-interchangeable gobos. “I consider it a hybrid because not only can we get gobos and a nice sharp spot, but it also has an iris and I can also frost it. It lets me go from a nice broad wide wash to a very narrow pinpoint. I think it is extremely versatile for the type of environment it is in.”
Pelaez also says he likes the fixture’s LED lamp source, which means he didn’t have to hit the owner with a $165 dollar per lamp bill for each bulb replacement. “Plus it runs cooler and doesn't have a lot of issues that older fixtures have,” he said. “It's a fixture that we use often because of its versatility and we have very few problems with it. You could say it is a workhorse fixture for us.” That versatility means they can also be used to pinspot tables for private events.
Lining the entire perimeter of the venue are Sniper 2R multi-effect lights used to immerse party-goers in a quick moving barrage of light. “When Elation came out with this hybrid scanner I was very excited because of its versatility and speed,” Pelaez says of the hybrid beam, scanner and laser simulator. “It was a missing tool in our arsenal. It has punch and a good beam and can move really fast. It also does very well during live performances to add to the visual effects. We've also been very happy with that fixture and have had very few problems with it.”
Located at the back of the stage are compact ACL 360i LED lights with a four-degree beam and continuous 360-degree rotation that are capable of creating a surprisingly full effect. Pelaez says the fixtures are used primarily to highlight the performers on stage and are extremely fast. Used as a static stage wash are SixPar 200 LED Par lights, which Pelaez says gives the right amount of output for the space and are used to light the stage from both an upstage and downstage position.
In order to deal with the issue of a relatively small space, Pelaez used a combination of black reflective panels to create a larger feel. “It's a small ceiling height, about 12ft high, so we felt adding a reflective surface would be a tremendous help, not only to amplify the space but to amplify the lighting. From any given point it doubles the height and the amount of lighting.” The room also houses high resolution LED video panels and other lighting.
Pelaez worked with Chris Tesoro of Elation rep firm Healy Sales on the project and says they have yet to have their first issue with the gear. “Chris has been our contact person since we started and we have a great relationship with him. He's always been very helpful.”
Roland Lantigua of Arka Room expresses his satisfaction with the newly designed venue, which is reportedly selling out on a consistent basis. “Reinventing yourself is a key to sustained success; we knew that we had to step up our lighting to keep the experience fresh for our customers and to have them keep coming back, and that’s why we hired Tirso Lighting,” he comments. “We couldn’t be happier with the results.” With reports of increased customer satisfaction along with longer stay times and higher revenues, the data backs why Lantigua is so bullish on the future of Arka Room.
9th August 2017
Small-Footprint, Huge-Output Danley Speakers and Amps Visually Disappear at Second Baptist Church, Springfield Missouri
USA – Founded in 1885, Second Baptist Church in Springfield, Missouri has moved, built, and rebuilt numerous sanctuaries in the 130-plus years of service to the Springfield community. It completed its current 1,000-seat sanctuary in the mid-1990s. When recent failures further exposed the shortcomings of what had been an unsatisfying sound reinforcement system from the start, Second Baptist turned to A/V integration firm Sandor Sound Services. Sandor designed and installed a new complement of Danley Sound Labs SH-96 and SH-95 loudspeakers, whose precision pattern control and high fidelity (even at high SPLs) give the church everything it had been hoping for. Moreover, the Danley boxes’ small footprint and optional white finish effectively let them disappear visually.
“Second Baptist Church’s existing system was underpowered and left a lot of coverage holes,” said Ed Sandor, principal at Sandor Sound Services. “The challenge was to deliver the sizeable output they needed without obscuring sightlines or creating an ugly mass of speakers – and to do it on a very tight budget. We were able to reuse their existing subwoofers and balcony speakers, giving us enough latitude to get the right Danley boxes for the main coverage, which was ultimately what was most important.”
He continued: “I really only had about five feet from the ceiling to the lip of the proscenium hang. Other companies were suggesting line arrays, which would have hung down too far. They would have looked like monstrosities! I showed them what Danley could do, and they were happy to hear that Danley could give the boxes a white finish to blend in with the white wall above the stage.” Sandor designed a system, taking advantage of Danley’s array of output patterns. As he has done before, Sandor ran his design past Danley’s Doug Jones, legendary acoustician and Heyser TEF Award-winner. “I love having access to Doug’s insights,” he said. “He made a few adjustments to the design and then flew out at commissioning to verify my tunings.”
The straightforward system uses an exploded LCR array of three loudspeaker clusters. Each cluster comprises a Danley SH-96 for main coverage and a Danley SH-95 for front fill. The use of Danley’s custom hanging hardware made the installation and commissioning far easier than it would have otherwise been. The SH-96s manage to catch a good portion of the balcony, so Sandor adjusted the existing delay boxes to pick up where the Danleys leave off. Two four-channel Danley DNA 20K4 Pro amplifiers provide abundant power for the new loudspeakers, along with Danley-loudspeaker-specific turnkey processing. Sandor made adjustments to an existing BSS SoundWeb DSP to work with the new system. For budgetary reasons, existing subwoofers fill out the low end.
“Those six Danley boxes cover the room beautifully,” Sandor said. “Their tremendous output, especially given their size, is amazing. It was great that Danley could help us match the room’s aesthetic with a white finish. The aesthetics are a big deal to Second Baptist, and they’re thrilled with the result.”
8th August 2017
Three JTE Roofs in a Row at Kent State University
USA – Kent State University chose three, side-by-side James Thomas Engineering PRT roof structures for their recent commencement ceremony. PRT systems are James Thomas Engineering Pre-Rig Super Truss roof systems with 38.1mm (15 inch) towers. They measure 12.2 x 12.2 metres (40 x 40 feet), with the centre roof having an additional mid-stage span. The structures are tied together with Pre-Rig SuperTruss, which forms the sound bays. All structures were provided by KO Management
photos: Ken Olsen
4th August 2017
Eclectic Alhambra in Paris Upgrades with Meyer Sound Leopard
France – Under the artful guidance of producer/owner Jean-Claude Auclair, the Alhambra Theatre and Music Hall in Paris has flourished by serving up an eclectic mix of diverse musical genres intermingled with comedy shows and children's productions. To present such wide-ranging artistic diversity with the utmost sonic fidelity, the Alhambra recently upgraded its venerable Meyer Sound reinforcement system with new Leopard compact linear line array loudspeakers and 1100-LFC low-frequency control units.
The Alhambra's prior MICA-based system had provided years of faithful service, but the step up to advanced Leo Family technology has been well received according to the Alhambra's audio consultant, Thomas Legrand.
"I would describe the Leopard system as offering greater accuracy and clarity," notes Legrand. "As soon as you raise just a few dBs in any frequency band, you hear the difference immediately. It also gives us a greater dynamic range than our previous system."
The two main arrays of seven-each Leopard loudspeakers are supplemented by four UPJunior VariO loudspeakers, with two serving as front fill and two as under-balcony delays. For powerful bass support, the system's former subwoofer complement has been replaced by four new 1100-LFC low-frequency control units deployed as a horizontal array under the stage.
"The new subs were the same pleasant surprise as the Leopards," adds Legrand. "They are extremely precise. When pushing the bass frequencies in our mixes, the response stays tight and doesn't 'dribble'."
Both the original Meyer Sound system and the recent upgrade were designed by Marc de Fouquières of DUSHOW Paris, the supplier of all sound, video and lighting systems for the venue.
At the front end of the system, the Alhambra offers mixing engineers an Avid Profile V console, Shure wireless microphones, and a full complement of wired microphones from AKG, Audio-Technica, Sennheiser and Shure. Loudspeaker processing is provided by a Meyer Sound Galileo 616.
The 2017 performance calendar for the Alhambra ranges from rap/hip-hop (5RO) and pop (Alison Moyet and Rick Astley) to hardcore (Underoath), punk (Delain) and world music (Barbara Furtuna + Belem) along with comedy and one-man/one-woman shows.
The Alhambra's exterior shell and a few interior features – notably a grand staircase – are all that remain of the 600-seat, 1920's vintage Théâtre Art Déco des Cheminots (Art Deco Theatre of the Railways) that once occupied the site. When acquired by Mr. Auclair, much of the original structure had to be demolished for modernisation. It was renamed in honour of another famous venue once located nearby, the Alhambra Maurice Chevalier, before reopening in 2008.
3rd August 2017
L-Acoustics Proves Its Mettle at Brooklyn Steel
USA – Leading New York City-based national concert promoter The Bowery Presents (TBP) recently opened its latest live music venue, Brooklyn Steel, a new 20,000-square-foot space in East Williamsburg, New York that is fitted out with L-Acoustics K2 line arrays, plus delays and stage monitors. A gantry crane retained from the former steel fabrication business enables the flown arrays to be repositioned, along with the movable 50,000-pound steel and concrete stage, to scale the audience area according to the expected attendance at each show.
TBP’s in-house team designed and installed Brooklyn Steel’s L-Acoustics loudspeaker system, which is patterned after a similar rig at Terminal 5, a 3,000-capacity venue in Manhattan that the promoter also exclusively operates. Mark Friedman of Long Island City-based See Factor supplied the speaker setup as well as the rest of the new club’s audio complement, including a 56-channel DiGiCo SD10 console at front-of-house with a 56-channel SD9 available for monitors. A three-way copper split accommodates tours traveling with their own monitor rigs as well as recording and broadcast feeds.
“Having worked with The Bowery Presents on numerous venues over the years, See Factor’s first choice of L-Acoustics and DiGiCo is a solid combination that has firmly built our fruitful relationship of trust with the promoter,” Friedman notes. “The Bowery Presents has always recognized the value of providing the highest quality production infrastructure available to best enhance both audiences’ and bands’ overall live experience.”
“Terminal 5 didn’t start out having the best reputation for great sound, but once we installed the K2 system it turned around to where engineers love mixing there,” says Lorne Grabe, front-of-house engineer at Terminal 5, where he collaborated on the design of the sound system with production manager Chris Burrows. “We wanted to achieve the same thing at Brooklyn Steel right out of the gate.”
For Brooklyn Steel, which at 1,800-capacity is the largest general admission space in the borough, Grabe specified a rig that mimics the latest Terminal 5 system almost box for box. The main left and right hangs each comprise ten K2 array modules - two fewer per hang than at Terminal 5 – while four Kara boxes provide front fill. K2’s Panflex horizontal steering feature nicely allowed the main arrays to be flown on the outside of the stage, close to the walls, yet keep the coverage tightly focused on the audience area.
Four K1-SB subs flown behind each array provide low frequency extension, with the added benefit of noise reduction on the performance area, while eight KS28 subs are distributed beneath the stage. “The KS28s are in a cardioid configuration, with the centre two flipped around, to keep too much energy from firing back onto the stage,” he says.
“I come from a theatre background,” continues Grabe, who circled the globe as a touring engineer and also previously oversaw operations at Masque Sound’s concert division. “So I also gave Brooklyn Steel a centre cluster of six Kara that engineers can put the vocals in and get more three-dimensional depth from the system.”
The venue features a raised audience platform toward the rear of the space plus two balcony levels. “There are eight Arcs WiFo boxes for delay, six for the second balcony and two under the first-floor balcony,” Grabe reports. Onstage, Brooklyn Steel offers visiting performers a monitor rig comprising 13 L-Acoustics X15 HiQ wedges, two ARCS WiFo cabinets on each side for sidefill, plus six SB18 subs for sidefill and drumfill.
Three LA12X amplified controllers drive the centre cluster and KS28 subs, and a total of 25 LA8 amplified controllers – more than at the larger Terminal 5 – power the remainder of the system. Each LA8 drives two boxes, affording a granularity that enables the rig to be fine-tuned for each position, as Grabe explains: “We have a little bit of delay timing whenever we move the rig, so we have a lot more FIR channels than at Terminal 5. It’s not really there for power; it’s there for finesse and for getting a nice mix.”
Overall, he adds: “There’s enough system there for the engineers who come through to be comfortable. We’re not pushing it; the rig sits around 70 percent, which also means the rig is really going to last. They’re not going to go through any drivers; they’re not stressing anything.”
The Bowery Presents launched in 1993 with New York’s 250-capacity Mercury Lounge, and now produces more than 2,000 shows a year at over 20 exclusive venues nationwide. “The Bowery Presents has always made sure that their venues sound good; it’s really important to them,” says Brooklyn Steel production manager Evan Player, who has worked for the company for almost 10 years, previously at the Music Hall of Williamsburg and Rough Trade NYC. “It’s nice to work for a company that cares that much, because it really does pay off in the user experience.”
The remote-controlled gantry can reset the line arrays to three different positions but thus far has been used only in its fully upstage or fully downstage locations, a difference of about ten feet, says Player. The lighting trusses move separately on newly-installed steel I-beams. “When we do the move, which is typically at the end of the previous show’s load-out, we’re able to do it with just four people,” he reports. “That’s more for spotting and making sure the cables are clear, not muscle, so it’s a very labour-friendly effort.”
For smaller shows, Player adds, the venue may close the balcony. “We have this great general admission floor; the balconies don’t intrude on them and everybody gets great sightlines. The PA is perfectly set up for that.”
At Brooklyn Steel, the promoter’s attention to detail extended to acoustic treatment and sound control implemented in consultation with Arup Engineering. “We had to be able to contain the audio with the volumes we need inside and be compliant with New York City code on the outside,” says Scott Raved, TBP’s point man on all its construction and renovation projects.
“The best solution for roof containment was a green roof, which allowed us to go higher than code so that we could incorporate a sizeable air gap. The mass of the green roof, coupled with the air gap, is sufficient to contain that low end.” Windows along one wall facing nearby residences were replaced with concrete-filled blocks, he adds. “We did a decent amount of interior acoustic treatment, too.”
“I spent about a year with L-Acoustics’ prediction software, Soundvision, tweaking it and going back and forth with Scott, working out where the stage and the gantry crane were going to be,” says Grabe. “It’s a beautiful venue, and set up perfectly.”
Brooklyn Steel was scheduled to launch on April 12, 2017, with about 30 shows announced, including The Decemberists, PJ Harvey, Chairlift, Goldfrapp, Whitney, Mitski, Tycho, Slowdive, The Jesus and Mary Chain and others. “We opened a week early,” says Raved. “A couple of days before we announced five nights of LCD Soundsystem, they sold out instantly. That was a pretty exciting way to open.”
photos: James Lawrenson
2nd August 2017
APG Wires South Korea’s Jeju Theatre for Sound
Korea – As Korea’s largest island, Jeju has been the country’s favourite domestic holiday destination for years thanks to its beautiful beaches, luxurious countryside, and its theatre for Nanta, a hugely popular South Korean non-verbal comedy show incorporating traditional percussion. Now visitors to Jeju Theatre can enjoy the show even more, thanks to world-class acoustics delivered by a range of APG loudspeakers.
Nanta premiered in Seoul in 1997 and has since been staged in 18 countries including in Broadway. Run by PMC Production, the show is also performed daily in four Seoul theatres, making it the longest-running show in Korean history. Built for Nanta performances exclusively, the 659-seat Jeju Theatre has welcomed over one million visitors since its opening in 2008 and was due for an audio upgrade to provide the best sonic experience to its audience.
The musical has a simple back story of three cooks attempting to finish preparing a wedding banquet within a strict time limit while the manager installs his incompetent nephew among the kitchen staff. The show involves acrobatics, magic tricks, comedy, pantomime and audience participation.
Korean integrator Soundplace was appointed to refurbish the theatre with pristine audio. For this project, the theatre and auditorium specialist selected a full APG setup: “For the Nanta shows, the traditional samul nori music is performed with improvised instruments such as cutting boards, water canisters and kitchen knives, so sound is at the very heart of this hugely popular musical”, commented Sangwoo Do, CEO of Soundplace. “PMC Production wanted to immerse the audience in the show in order to rejuvenate the experience.”
Soundplace installed two clusters of line arrays in L/R configuration, each comprising of two APG UL115B bass speakers, five UL210 top speakers and one TB218S subwoofer. Multi-purpose DX15 coaxial speakers cover as infill on each side of the stage, while a further two ultra-compact MX0 coaxial loudspeakers reinforce first ranks as front fills.
Grégory Dapsanse, marketing and business development director at APG, praised the quality of the integration: “Soundplace successfully achieved an efficient sound design and great tuning despite a big challenge – in such a mid-size venue, the system has to be compact and discrete while providing enough SLP with large headroom to reflect the huge dynamic range from the percussion. Because of the nearby walls, the Uniline directivity control was critical to avoid reflections and ensure high intelligibility and sonic precision all the way to the last row.”
“We have been working with APG since 2014 and we have always been impressed by the capacity of their speakers to reproduce a ‘pure’ sound that truly represents the vocals and instruments. The Uniline range is particularly interesting as it provides great sound control within a compact size”, concluded Sangwoo Do.
2nd August 2017
KLANG:fabrik is the Perfect Sounding Prescription for Florida Hospital Church
USA – The musicians on the worship team at Florida Hospital Church (FHC) now have a new in-ear monitoring system that might be best described, in an oddly good way, as “totally sick!” This is due to the fact that FHC came on board earlier this year as one of the first North American houses of worship to install a KLANG:fabrik 3D IEM solution for its praise band.
The addition of the KLANG system, which was sold by Avnew – a local AVL consultant and integrator primarily dedicated to the HoW market – came about when the Seventh-day Adventist church’s band members expressed their interest in moving to a wireless monitoring platform.
“I first came across KLANG at InfoComm a couple of years ago and was impressed with the technology and its ease of use,” says AVnew’s Gil Parente. “So when the musicians at Florida Hospital Church shared that they didn’t want to limit their mobility by being tethered to their personal mixers, I suggested they look into the KLANG system at the same time that they were adding some more Shure PSM 300s. It’s the ultimate solution to achieve the freedom of being on an wireless IEM system combined with a very intuitive user interface and uniquely immersive 3D environment.”
For FHC technical director Chad Hess, the KLANG system offered clear advantages. “The way that you can spatially move instruments around the sound field is very nice,” he says. “In a mono in-ear mix where everything’s on top of each other, it’s hard to pick out your own instrument, and a stereo mix is really only marginally better. With the amount of separation that you can achieve in the KLANG, each instrument has its own clear identity in a 360-degree audio field. And it’s so simple for band members to be able to just drag where they want their sound to be with a finger on their personal tablets.”
Those tablets, in this case, happen to be a set of inexpensive but effective Amazon Fire devices. “With other in-ear systems requiring a touchscreen, the only option is an iPad, which is nice but certainly adds up when you’re talking about eight mixes,” says Parente. “Because KLANG is fully functional and compatible with even $50 tablets, it actually makes the cost per mix very competitive with other personal mixing stations, ones that don’t offer this amazing, realistic 3D environment that KLANG does.”
Another thing that Hess appreciates is the system’s ability to protect musicians’ hearing and sanity when volume level increases occasionally run rampant. “One of the problems that we previously used to experience was band members turning one thing up, then another, and then another until they couldn’t hear anything clearly because everything’s at max and it just sounds terrible,” he laughs. “With the KLANG, if you boost an input all the way and then hit it again, it automatically lowers every other input by that amount, which is very simple yet effective solution. It’s little details like that that make this such a great tool.”
Despite the high-tech nature of the system, Hess notes that the setup was remarkably painless: “It was one of the easiest and smoothest installs that we’ve done, which surprised me. We’re Dante-based here, and once we got everything patched over — the KLANG system, the wireless in-ear system, and the tablets — it all just worked on the first try. KLANG’s setup screens are extremely intuitive, and patching inputs and output was very easy as well.”
With two FHC services held each Sabbath, plus another church denomination renting the space and system for its own services on Sundays, worship music styles and performers in the 530-seat room vary widely from week to week, but everyone using the system is reportedly very pleased. “The musicians love being wireless and really like the KLANG system with its wider feel,” Hess adds. “They’d have to work awfully hard to make a mono mix on this thing; it very intuitively pushes them to make a wider and better mix. And the better the musicians can hear themselves, the better they can play, so the music is better, which makes for a better overall worship experience for everyone.”
1st August 2017
Tommex Provides Quality Audio for Stadion Miejski with Community Loudspeakers
Poland – Stadion Miejski, located in Łódź, is the home stadium of football team Widzew Łódź, one of Poland’s best known football brands. Designed by architect Jacek Ferdzyn, Stadion Miejski is an entirely new construction with an all-seater capacity of 18,018. The design meets the requirements of UEFA Category 3 classification, with the option of adapting to higher categories if required.
The contract for design and installation of the stadium’s sound systems was awarded to Tommex Żebrowscy Sp. J. The first stage of the system's design was a detailed EASE acoustic simulation for loudspeaker selection and placement.
For Stadion Miejski, Tommex again chose Community’s R SERIES loudspeakers for their high power, outstanding intelligibility, controlled coverage and all-weather reliability. Flown from the roof canopy in a distributed configuration, Tommex achieved ideal coverage of the stadium’s four stands with thirty-eight R.5-96MAX 12-inch high performance coaxial two-way loudspeakers. An additional two R.5HP compact voice-range optimised three-way loudspeakers were deployed to cover the playing pitch.
The system is operated from the commentator room, where a Behringer X32 digital console with DANTE card controls all sound signals. Adjacent to the console is a PC with IRIS-Net software, customised for Stadion Miejski. This allows for continuous monitoring of all equipment, and adjustment of parameters for particular zones of the system. The commentator room equipment also includes CD/MP3 players, wireless microphone receivers, a digital feedback eliminator and active monitor loudspeakers.
The audio feed from the commentator's room is sent to two amplifier rooms, located in opposite stands. Each has three Dynacord DSA 8410 four-channel class D power amplifiers, equipped with IRIS-Net RCM 810 control modules, and one Dynacord P64 modular matrix. The P64 allows for remote control of systems devices, signal processing and connection of the entire system to the fiber network. Communication between the commentator room and the two amp rooms is via the DANTE protocol.
In addition to the commercial audio system, Tommex also installed an APS Aprosys voice evacuation system, from Swiss manufacturer g+m electronics. In emergency situations, the evacuation system assumes full priority, automatically muting commercial signals and sending alarm messages to all evacuation zones, including to the spectator stands and playing pitch through the Community loudspeaker system.
Marcin Zimny, Commercial Director of Tommex, commented: “The combination of equipment in Stadion Miejski has been well proved for quality and reliability in the many stadia we have completed across Poland. The latest R.5-96MAX has not only maintained R SERIES legendary all-weather reliability, but also raised the audio quality to an outstanding level.”
1st August 2017
International Foods Store expands operations with Cloud Zoned Audio System
UK – When the owners of the International Foods store Ozmen decided to expand operations with a new store in the heart of The Northern Power House they called upon AV specialist integrators Definition Audio Visual to provide a comprehensive multi-zone audio solution for their new store.
Ozmen, the international kings of cuisine, specialise in foods from around the world. Their stores offer a unique selection of culinary delights, which includes everything from Australian wines and African coffee beans to British teas and Indian spices, both on line and in-store. The new store expands the company’s ability to supply to local customers, a stunning variety of foods including Kurdish, Greek, Asian Kosovan, Iranian, Polish, Romanian and Afro Caribbean.
To further enhance the new Ozmen store’s singular and eclectic ambience with its full flavours, rich aromas and diverse essences, a multi-zone audio solution was chosen to further enrich the in-store shopping experience.
Mark Blackwell, managing director, Definition Audio Visual told us: “At Ozmen we provided a three-zone audio solution. We installed a number of Cloud CS6B wall mount speakers in black in the food and checkout areas and additional speakers in the store’s entrance area. More CS6B surface wall mount speakers are installed in the warehouse area to the rear of the store, effectively creating three separate audio zones.”
Cloud PM-4 four zone paging microphones, strategically located in warehouse, food court and checkout areas, allow paging announcements to be made to any one or all three of the separate audio zones.
The Cloud loudspeakers, tapped at 32W maximum per speaker, are connected to Cloud CXV225 100V amplifiers, each delivering up to 250W output at 100V per channel. Audio sources are connected to a Cloud Z4 MK4 four-zone mixer.
“Cloud’s paging system allows us to daisy-chain paging microphone stations really easily. Using Cat 5e screened cable between stations almost any number of paging microphones can be installed throughout the store and warehouse storage area. This also means we can expand the system further in the future, if this becomes a requirement,” adds Mark Blackwell.