Featuring a combination of music concerts and soccer games, attendees at this year’s Ethiopian 4th of July Celebration at RFK Stadium found themselves immersed in top quality sound.
Over the course of three days—July 1st, 4th, and 6th—hip hop artist T.I. and rappers TPain, B.o.B., and Young Jeezy were among the numerous acts that kept the roughly 10,000 attendees in festive spirits. Music was everywhere, thanks in no small part to the exemplary performance characteristics of D.A.S. Audio Aero Series 2 loudspeaker systems.
New York, NY-based Q Lights and Sound Productions, a provider of staging, lighting, and sound services for the live / special events market, was contracted to deploy the sound reinforcement system for this year’s event. Vito Lazarte, the firm’s CEO and system designer / lead engineer, discussed the challenges of the project.
“The area of coverage was extremely wide,” Lazarte explained. “Because of this, it was critically important to deploy a sound system that offered broad horizontal dispersion in addition to solid vertical throw. In terms of sound, the system needed to have great music reproduction qualities without sacrificing speech intelligibility. These considerations are precisely what led us to the deployment of the D.A.S. Audio equipment. After modeling the system in EASE Focus, we preceded to put it all together.”
The system that Lazarte and his crew deployed consisted of twenty-four D.A.S. Aero 12A powered, compact, 2-way, line array modules—flown twelve elements per side—for the house mains. To ensure proper coverage on the extreme sides of the area, the crew also positioned another five Aero 12A’s each for the left and right primary outfills. For frontfill coverage, Lazarte also placed six Aero 8A ultra-compact, 2-way enclosures across the front of the stage area. Loudspeaker management tasks were handled by a D.A.S. Audio DSP-26 2-In / 6-Out stereo / mono processor.
Stage monitoring provisions were handled via sixteen D.A.S. Audio Road 12A powered, 2-way stage monitors while sixteen D.A.S. LX-218CA powered, high performance sub bass enclosures provided low frequency support. These subwoofers were positioned eight enclosures per side.
“The fact that all these loudspeakers are self-powered was a huge advantage on this project,” Lazarte, reports. “Since we didn’t have to deal with racks of heavy power amps, transporting the equipment was easier, as was the actual setup. These powered loudspeakers simplify system cabling, which in turn makes the entire setup more streamlined.”
When queried about D.A.S. Audio customer and technical support services, Lazarte says D.A.S. always has his back. “D.A.S. Audio is really easy to deal with,” he said. “I can get hold of someone anytime I call and, if I leave a message, they always get back to me quickly. In this line of business, that’s a huge benefit.
With this year’s celebration now in the rearview mirror, Lazarte reports he couldn’t be happier with the way everything turned out. “There was a tremendous amount of gear required for this project,” he said, “and the D.A.S. equipment made the job go really smoothly. The powered loudspeakers are a tremendous benefit by themselves, and when you factor in D.A.S. Audio’s first-rate rigging hardware, you simply can’t go wrong. The flyware on the Aero Series 2 loudspeakers is exceptional and because of this, both setup and tear down are easier and faster. My entire crew—production manager Carlos Lazarte, stage manager Elvis Rodriguez, monitor engineer Jean Paul Zayas-Bazan, lighting tech Giovanni Zayas-Bazan, and FOH engineer Fernando Garcia—were all really impressed with how efficient the setup was.”
“Best of all,” he continued, “the client, the performers, and the audience were all positively knocked out by the system’s performance. You could understand every word that was spoken and the music was big and full sounding. Several artists commented that they loved the sound of the system. Most importantly, the client loved it. By the second day, we were already contracted for next year’s event. When one job leads to repeat business, that’s as good as it gets!”