Tuesday, October 15, 2013
Engineer Ben Hammond Utilizing Allen & Heath Digital Mixing For Saxon On Tour
GLD & iLive for both front of house and monitors
Mix engineer Ben Hammond is traveling with Allen & Heath GLD and iLive digital mixing systems for front of house and monitors on the current U.S./Canada tour by iconic English heavy metal band Saxon, with American band Fozzy also on the bill.
A GLD-80 mixer is at FOH, accompanied by an AR2412 rack to manage I/O, such as L+R, sub, and fills. The mixer takes inputs via Dante from the iLive monitor system, comprising an iLive-T112 surface and iDR-48 MixRack.
“I’m currently running a 39 input “festival patch” type channel list to fit both Saxon and Fozzy, and GLD has coped fantastically,” explains Hammond. “I’m using all eight on board FX engines, which sound stunning—the EMT250 and ADT presets are personal favorites of mine.
“As well as the FX, so many great iLive features have been included in GLD, one of which that I find incredibly useful is the filter on the compressor section; I’m using it for Saxon’s frontman, Biff Byford, to hit his vocal pretty hard from 800 Hz to 4 kHz, which keeps his voice sounding thick and full right into the higher registers. I’m putting the vocals into a subgroup where I apply full band compression with the Manual Peak setting.”
Audinate Dante controller software routes the direct outs from the iDR-48 into the GLD channel inputs. Hammond is then sending talkback, and a split of the iPod channels for the intro, back down Dante to the iLive surface, which gets piped into the bands IEMs. The Dante controller software is also routing the audio into Reaper for multitrack recording via the Dante virtual sound card.
“The GLD Editor has been great on this tour especially for programming shows for the various press and TV appearances where we have taken the GLD, and run a much more cut down channel list, with me doing the IEMs also, and mixing L+R for the TV feed,” notes Hammond.
Allen & Heath
Tim LaPrade Joins ProAudio.com Sales Team
Seasoned account manager a welcome addition to growing company
ProAudio.com has announced the addition of Tim LaPrade to its team as a senior account manager.
“I’m very excited to have Tim join our company,” says Mark Bradford, GM/VP of ProAudio.com. “He’s a man of integrity with an excellent work ethic and reputation within our industry. We are honored to have the opportunity to work with him.”
LaPrade joins ProAudio.com after a 17-year career at Sound Productions, where he began as a warehouse clerk and progressed to eventually becoming a tenured pro audio sales account manager responsible for over 1,900 local, national and international clients. While honing his consultative-selling approach, he also managed inventory and developed new ideas to streamline business operations.
Prior to Sound Productions, LaPrade operated his own pro audio rental and engineering company, where he also served as a front of house engineer and production manager. He also spent many years in the lithography business and holds a Bachelors of Science degree in graphic arts and lithography from Oklahoma State University.
“I’m thrilled to join the ProAudio.com sales force,” LaPrade says. “I have admired Mark Bradford and the work ProAudio.com is doing for many years now. Their focus on client-based, relationship selling has always been the basis of my sales philosophy and I hope, with my addition, we will be able to grow our base even larger, reaffirming the idea that pricing is rarely the most important part of a solid business relationship.”
ProAudio.com is a Fort Worth based dealer/distributor of more than 400 professional audio, video, lighting and broadcast equipment lines.
Grund Audio Announces New GT-SF242R Front/Side Fill Loudspeaker
Rotatable horn and multifaceted fly system facilitates versatile placement
Grund Audio Design has introduced the new GT-SF242R loudspeaker, designed specifically for front fill and side fill applications, offering versatility in terms of placement and positioning.
Measuring 36.2 x 15 x 14.6 inches (w x h x d), the new GT-SF242R is a 2-way loudspeaker design with dual 12-inch transducers and a 2-inch compression driver for the high frequencies.
The compression driver is coupled with an 80- x 50-degree horn on a rotatable conversion plate that enables one to optimize dispersion depending upon the physical placement of the loudspeaker enclosure. This design is accomplished by having the horn mounted to a larger rectangular plate that does the physical moving.
In addition, the rotation of the horn physically changes the porting of the box, as the vent holes move to accommodate the horn’s position. The end result is a front and side fill loudspeaker system that offers exceptional coverage regardless of its physical orientation.
The GT-SF242R ships with an innovative 6-inch fly track on both the top and underside of the enclosure that enables multifaceted positioning. This hardware allows the loudspeaker to be used in multiples for line source hanging and, in addition to being flown in a horizontal orientation, the GT-SF242R can also be flown vertically from the ends of the enclosure.
The enclosure is constructed from 13-ply Baltic birch and covered in a durable polyurethane enamel finish (black or white). It includes a perforated, powder coated steel grill with a high transmission ratio that is backed by a splash mesh to protect the transducers.
The loudspeaker’s frequency range extends from 40 Hz – 18 kHz. It uses an internal crossover and can readily be bi-amped.
“The GT-SF242R is unique in the fact that this loudspeaker is specifically designed for front fill and side fill applications,” states Frank Grund, president of Grund Audio Design. “The transducer compliment delivers full frequency performance and the rotatable 80- x 50-degree horn enables this system to be positioned without compromise.
“In addition to its ability to be flown vertically or horizontally, there’s also a ‘pullback’ point that enables one to adjust the angle of the loudspeaker. The end result is a loudspeaker that delivers exceptional vocal performance and first-rate control. I’m confident sound reinforcement professionals will find this new loudspeaker system an outstanding choice for everything from live concerts to theatrical performances and more.”
The Grund Audio Design GT-SF242R is available now at a uggested MSRP of $1,899.
Grund Audio Design
Amandla Productions Provides Martin Audio MLA For Paul McCartney In Italy
Touring logistics meant that McCartney’s regular PA system could not make the Verona date
Paul McCartney’s Out There tour recently landed in the Arena di Verona, the historic amphitheatre in Verona, Italy that has provided entertainment spectacles for thousands of years.
Touring logistics meant that McCartney’s regular PA system could not make the Verona date, so local supplier Amandla Productions stepped in to provide a Martin Audio MLA system, supported by All Access, the owners of Italy’s largest MLA rig.
McCartney’s long-standing FOH engineer Paul “Pab” Boothroyd was at the helm for the show, ably assisted by his touring system tech Chris Nicholls. Both were impressed by the system’s performance.
“I had heard a lot of good things about the new Martin Audio rig and was happy to use it for this show,” says Boothroyd. “Everybody was really happy with the show, the coverage was great and the detail and clarity in the system made it an enjoyable show to mix. It’s great to see Martin Audio right at the front of new design––the first systems I mixed on were Martin Audio Philishave rigs and that powerful musical sound got me going in my career.”
All Access system tech, Red, was able to demonstrate the unique control of the MLA to Chris Nicholls: “The way the system was able to cover a steeply raked venue with relatively few boxes was very impressive. It didn’t look as though they had enough curve on the array, and we gave them a really tight weight target to hit so they couldn’t add more boxes; yet the flatter array shape was great for the throw required. With a quick adjustment in the software they had the system covering great right up to the back seat without adjusting its angles and that’s something I’ve never heard a system do before.”
The system deployed in Verona included 12 MLA per side for main hangs, six MLA per side for out hangs and two MLD in the orchestra pit for front fill. The out hangs were particularly challenging, as they had to be flown from the ancient stepped seating within a scaffolding structure. The manageable weight and size of the MLA cabinets made this difficult maneuver possible. “The MLA is less than 194 pounds,” Red says, “and being based around horn loaded 12s meant we could physically lift the cabinets and fit them in between the steps and the scaffold structure; anything heavier or taller simply would not have been possible in the space available.”
The Out There tour continued on to Vienna before returning for a run of shows in America. “We’re back to our normal touring PA after this show but I’ll look forward to mixing on MLA again––this rig is right up there with the best in the world,” Boothroyd says.
Monday, October 14, 2013
Lea County Event Center In New Mexico Upgrades With QSC WideLine
WideLine-8 live arrays powered by CX Series amplifiers support diverse event schedule
The Lea County Event Center, located in Hobbs, NM, has upgraded its installed sound system with QSC Audio WideLine-8 line arrays powered by CX Series amplifiers.
The multi-use venue, which can seat more than 10,000, hosts a diverse program of commercial, industrial, community, social, sports and entertainment events throughout the year.
In order to accommodate such a wide variety of events and to meet the venue’s budget, Casey McGrew, Senior Consultant at Tarpley Media Systems in Lubbock, TX, specified three hangs each of 10 WL3082 arrays together with four WL212-sw subwoofers and twenty three matching CX Series amplifiers to power the system.
“We covered almost 300 degrees with the three QSC arrays,” says McGrew, who specified a mono summed configuration, with the entire array covering a floor area measuring 245 feet by 110 feet.
McGrew initially chose a solution from another manufacturer before realizing it would not provide the power or coverage that the venue needed. Being his first experience with WideLine, McGrew was concerned that its technical specification might be marketing hype and not reality. “But the QSC worked just as described,” he notes. “Now I know why they call it WideLine – it has worked out very well.”
Two rings of reflective concrete walkways extending around the venue were a particular challenge. By using the venue’s existing digital signal processor, however, and by specifying a number of QSC amplifiers, McGrew was able to design precise control into the system.
“The arrays may have very wide horizontal coverage but vertically they’re very narrow, so I could keep the reflections from walkways to a minimum. I was very pleased with the end result,” he explains.
McGrew designed the system in consultation with QSC application engineer Rob Pingle “Rob and I had several long conversations. We did EASE predictions and his analysis pretty much matched mine—I was very pleased with that,” McGrew says. “All the money seats are well-covered; even the non-money seats. The seats at the edges and clear up to the top all sound good.”
McGrew has been involved with the venue since its construction in the early 1990s. “They called me because they got into trouble with the original sound system manufacturer. So, I gave them the name of one of the top 10 acoustic materials manufacturing companies, in Amarillo, Texas.”
As a result of installing sound treatment, he states, “That room is acoustically one of the better sounding arenas for its size. It let us use WideLine-8s to overcome the reverberant field and have a little more power so that you have a larger sweet spot.”
With no professional staging companies located in the region the venue must rely on hired labor for its productions. This necessitated an easy-to-use control system. According to McGrew, “It’s really simple. There are two line level inputs from the floor and two line level inputs up in the booth. The rest of the system is controlled by computers. The event personnel have an on/off switch—the entire system stages itself up and on, and turns itself off, without any pops or bangs. A second switch mutes the two side line arrays. So if they’re just going to use the floor they can cover the center all the way to the back with just one switch. That also reduces reverberation and makes it sound more intimate.”
“With the Lea County Event Center now offering first-class event personnel, easy loading access, essential power, air conditioning, green room and catering services, and a great sound system, it attracts a wide range of events,” he concludes. “On Father’s Day they had Bill Cosby there with over 11,000 people. They’ve had Travis Tritt and other country artists. The event center also hosts tractor pulls, graduations, weddings, and charity fundraisers. With all of the oil business that’s happening around there, they have a lot of major meetings. You just can’t imagine the range.”
Starlight’s Meyer Sound LEO Deployed For Gyllene Tider Swedish Tour
Low end provided by 24 1100-LFC low-frequency control elements in an end-fire array
The Swedish pop group Gyllene Tider recently embarked on its first tour in nine years, performing mostly in large outdoor stadiums throughout Sweden. For the 19-show tour, Stockholm-based sound provider Starlight supplied a Meyer Sound LEO linear large-scale sound reinforcement system.
“The LEO system was new to me, but I was extremely impressed from the start by its long-throw capabilities,” says Anders Molund, FOH engineer for Gyllene Tider. “The detail of LEO’s sound is very revealing, even at long distances, while the system’s small size and weight are also very beneficial.”
Although this was Molund’s first tour with Gyllene Tider, he has long used Meyer Sound equipment during his many tours with pop rock duo Roxette, which also features Gyllene Tider frontman Per Gessle. It was a logical decision for Molund to choose Meyer Sound again for Gyllene Tider.
“As ever with Meyer Sound, I love the way that different product lines perform well together,” says Molund. “For example, on this tour we used LEO loudspeakers with M3D line array loudspeakers, and were able to get even coverage without any problems.”
Assisted by system engineers Thomas Malbeck and Fredrik Arwidsson of Starlight, Molund mixed on a main system of 16 LEO-M and two MICA line array loudspeakers per side, while front fill consisted of eight MICA loudspeakers and six JM-1P arrayable loudspeakers.
For larger shows, out fill hangs of six M3D line array loudspeakers per side were added. Low end was provided by 24 1100-LFC low-frequency control elements in an end-fire array configuration. Drive and alignment were handled by a Galileo Callisto loudspeaker management system featuring four Galileo Callisto 616 array processors and one Galileo 616 processor.
“We carried an additional 12 M3D loudspeakers to use for delay towers, but with LEO’s impressively long throw, we only had to use the delays for a few shows,” says Molund.
The touring system also included DiGiCo SD5 and SD10 consoles, while the band used microphones from beyerdynamic, DPA, Sennheiser, and Shure, as well as an Optocore fiber-based network system.
Neumann Announces Special Offers On Microphone, Monitor Purchases
Part of company's 85th birthday celebration
In celebration of its 85th birthday, Neumann USA has announced two special incentives for U.S.-based customers interested in purchasing its microphones and studio monitors.
Effective immediately, purchasers of any Neumann microphone are eligible to receive free Sennheiser HD 280 Pro headphones, while purchasers of a pair of Neumann KH 120 studio monitors, or a single KH 310 monitor, are eligible to receive a free soft carrying case.
Rebates are valid on products listed above, which must purchased from an authorized Neumann dealer between now and December 31, 2013.
Eligible rebate claims require the following:
• A completed rebate form, which can be downloaded from the Neumann website here.
• The original UPC and EAN code, cut from the box (no photocopies will be accepted)
• A copy of the sales receipt, dated between October 1, 2013 and December 31, 2013, from an authorized Neumann dealer for a product listed above
• All materials must be postmarked no later than January 31, 2014
Authorized Neumann dealers are listed online here. And, go here to download the rebate forms.
Neumann was founded in Berlin in 1928 and has since become ubiquitous in the recording, broadcast and live sound industries.
How The Cloud Impacts Systems Integration Firms
It's a path to the recurring revenue game. Are you playing?
It’s official: Cloud fever has struck Integratorville.
With widespread use of commercial cloud applications like iCloud, Dropbox and Google Apps, it was only a matter of time before the “marketing cool” that is cloud became relevant to the integrator channel.
This has left CIs everywhere asking themselves, how do we capitalize on the popularity of cloud?
In the commercial integration market, cloud is still primarily just a “marketecture” used by manufacturers, VARs and distributors all offering cloud-based solutions for collaboration, conferencing, signage and support.
With what appears to be an abundance of cloud solutions reaching the channel, the good news is cloud may finally be providing a platform by which a CI can get into the recurring revenue game. The bad news is, we are seemingly talking a lot more than we are doing.
Talking Cloud Is One Thing
If there is one thing the integration channel has done a lot of, it is talk about change – changing technologies, changing market forces, changing profitability and so on.
Perhaps more discussed than any of those things is the integrators need for a change in their business model, specifically a move from project (capex) revenue to a more sexy recurring revenue (opex) model based on services. Of course this topic immediately leads to further conversation about how CIs can leverage cloud.
While all of this talk is great, what has been the effect? How much cloud is the integration channel selling? Is it relevant? Can it be measured?
Flirting, Dating, Marrying Cloud?
Like all major shifts in business, the movement to cloud is more than just a shift in ideology.
In reality, it reflects a full change in how integrators go to market. It impacts project size, scope, cash flow and compensation amongst other things.
This leaves many CI business leaders to find themselves on the outside looking in as the change seems like too much to take on at one time. Those that are getting into the cloud business seem to be more likely to flirt with cloud services than to truly jump into the dark yet perhaps perfect waters that represent “cloud services.”
Business Impact Of Cloud?
The business impact of cloud is still primarily locked in potential.
The speculation is that with the growth of a cloud practice, CIs can finally unlock the potential recurring revenue stream that has been so elusive for the CI. What challenges the integrators is figuring out how to start.
It is more than just talking, and even more than just flirting, that is going to be required for a VAR to succeed in cloud. It will require a commitment to a changing business model, smaller but more consistent cash flows that build in time, and a vast improvement in service delivery, most poignantly the way support issues are responded to.
But just because the change is hard doesn’t mean it should be ignored. Cloud is without a doubt a popular way to market and solve business problems, and in the end as CIs that is what we are using technology to do.
The popularity of cloud based applications is here to stay, which means it is something CIs need to learn to embrace. With an abundance of options spilling into the channel that integrators can now package and sell, those that take the opportunity and run may be the ones to pull away in the race to sustainable profits.
However, those that catch the fever and don’t cure it with a meaningful shift in their business model may be left out in the cold.
Daniel L. Newman currently serves as CEO of EOS, a new company focused on offering cloud-based management solutions for IT and A/V integrators. He has spent his entire career in various integration industry roles. Most recently, Newman was CEO of United Visual where he led all day to day operations for the 60-plus-year-old integrator.
Go to Commercial Integrator for more content on A/V, installed and commercial systems.
Friday, October 11, 2013
Community Loudspeakers Rev Up System At Crandon Off-Road Raceway
R-Series loudspeakers deliver coverage at several key areas of the facility
Located just west of Crandon, Wisconsin, the Crandon International Off-Road Raceway hosts a variety of motor races, R/C races, concerts, and other entertainment throughout the summer season.
The venue’s audio system, which consisted of traditional public address paging horns, had difficulty overcoming the track’s noise levels and it had deteriorated over the years from exposure to Wisconsin weather.
In 2012, the raceway contacted Kevin Mullins of Arrow AV Group in Appleton, Wisconsin for a quote on a new system. Mullins had provided live production for entertainment at the track and he had served as a flagger and spotter for motor races.
He understood the challenges faced by the audio system and presented the venue with a design based on Community Professional R-Series loudspeakers. “We’ve used lots of Community for outdoor events and installations and I knew they would do a great job for Crandon,” said Mullins.
The system includes thirty R.5HPTs which are located at spectator points around the raceway, at the bleachers (which were newly installed in 2012) and at the pit building.
Four R.25-94TZ loudspeakers supplement the sound outside the concessions barn and four Distributed Design Series DS5 surface-mount loudspeakers are installed inside the barn.
Electronics are installed in the announce booth near the bleachers and include a Biamp Nexia DSP, which provides mixing and DSP services, and Shure wireless microphone systems. The system has five spectator zones and a press feed for racing network productions. Each zone has its own volume control. Arrow AV Group programmed the DSP with an AGC block to avoid amplifying motor noise when the cars pass by the announce booth.
Mullins says the owners are very pleased with their new system. Race announcements are now intelligible even when motor racing noise is at its peak. The system gets lots of compliments from spectators and pit workers who can finally hear the announcements anywhere around the track.
Arrow AV Group
Harman Professional Forms New Global Team To Support Live Sound & Rental Community
Team to be led by industry veteran Brian Pickowitz
Harman Professional has formed a new global group to support live sound and rental professionals with advanced programs, including technology, systems, training and support.
The group is led by Brian Pickowitz, newly promoted to associate director, Global Live Sound and Rental Systems, and also includes tour sound veterans Raul Gonzalez, application engineer, Live Sound and Rental for North America, and Vincent “Vinnie” Perreux, application engineer, Live Sound and Rental for EMEA and Asia.
“The formation of a new Global Live Sound and Rental Systems group within Harman Professional will serve our customers well and I am pleased and encouraged to have a professional of Brian Pickowitz’s expertise and experience to lead the group,” states Scott Robbins, executive VP of sales, Harman Professional. “Brian understands his market, his technologies and his clients’ needs and makes it his business to ensure their productions meet their highest expectations. Brian has demonstrated his capacity as a client-partner and I am confident that he will make a significant contribution to our success and the success of our clients around the world.”
According to Pickowitz, the group is extending the depth of partnership to which Harman Professional engages its customers in this community. “We recognize that partnership extends beyond a transaction and requires a considerable commitment before, during and after the sale,” he says. “Our strengthened commitment to training and support will ensure that customers in the live sound and rental communities extract optimal return from their investment in our platform.
“If we can provide customers with greater consistency in terms of system performance and setup efficiency, then we’ll help improve their businesses and therein lies the goal of this new group.”
Pickowitz joined Crown Audio as an electrical design engineer in 2004 and has since been heavily involved in the development of Crown Audio’s tour sound business, assuming the marketing leadership of that sector in 2010. He has played a key role in the design and implementation of business-critical live sound products, including the I-Tech HD, Vrack and Macro Tech I Series. A 2004 graduate of Southern Illinois University, Brian Pickowitz holds a BSEE in Electrical Engineering.
Vincent “Vinnie” Perreux has more than 30 years experience supporting worldwide tour sound productions and working closely with front of house and monitor engineers. He has served as sound system engineer, crew chief and product trainer for Clair Global & Clair Brothers. Perreux’s experiences also includes work with Clair/ShowCo, SSE Audio Group, Agora, Westfalen Sound and Eighth Day Sound other companies and with bands including Muse, U2, Smashing Pumpkins, Leonard Cohen, Gloria Estefan, Justin Timberlake, Beyoncé, Green Day, Bon Jovi, Michael Jackson and Elton John among others.”
Raul Gonzalez is similarly qualified with18 years of experience in the audio industry. During the last 13 years, he has worked for Harman’s JBL Professional supporting tour sound & rental clients as Market Development Engineer for Latin America, tour sound produce manager and tour sound field engineer. Prior to joining Harman, Gonzalez was systems engineer for the Julio Iglesias World Tour, and audio systems designer for Concert Sound Consultants.
“Just as our live sound and rental customers rely on talented, hardworking crews to represent their businesses and support their artists, Harman Professional now has one of the most talented and hardworking teams on the road to support its customers. I look forward to working with Vinnie and Raul to develop support and training programs that provide customers with deeper care and more forward-looking training than anyone else in the marketplace,” Pickowitz concludes.
Excellence Marketing Celebrates 25th Anniversary
Company president Ken Simons acknowledges mentors at Mel Foster Company
Excellence Marketing, a manufacturers’ representative firm based in Eden Prairie, MN, recently marked its 25th anniversary. Founded in 1988, the firm is currently staffed by Paul Cassady, Patrick Gilligan, Mark Mitchell, Ken Simons and Ann Wickstrom.
President Ken Simons observes, “We’re very grateful to our customers and manufacturers for their support. Our 25 successful years comes from meeting their needs.”
He adds, “I’m proud to be part of a team that offers a combined 90 years of manufacturers rep experience. There’s no substitute for this level of experience. It’s at the core of the value that we add.”
Simons acknowledges his mentors at Mel Foster Company, where he was first employed as a field representative and learned the fundamentals of the business, and notes that “being a solid manufacturer’s rep firm is based on many principles and subtleties which I was fortunate to have been taught by Gene Foster and David Voelke. One of the most important concepts they taught me is that the business climate surrounding us is ever-changing with increasing acceleration. Gene Foster ran a very dynamic organization which constantly adapted to the market’s needs, and we have worked to build on that model.”
As it enters its 26th year, Excellence Marketing continues to supply quality audio, video & communications products and services to contractors, integrators, resellers, and distributors in the Upper Midwest.
Next-proaudio Introduces New LA212X Axially Symmetric 3-Way Line Array
Symmetric design results in virtually identical acoustic sound patterns on the right and left
Next-proaudio of Portugal has introduced the LA212X, a 3-way, horn-loaded, axially symmetric line array element providing 90-degree horizontal constant dispersion control. The symmetric design results in virtually identical acoustic sound patterns on the right and left, affording easy, accurate alignment.
The bass section makes use of two 12-inch neodymium woofers with 3-inch voice coils that are strategically placed on either side of the speaker in a dipolar horn arrangement. The horn mouths are horizontally separated by a “tuned” distance that uses the Tuned Dipolar Array effect to achieve exceptional low frequency horizontal dispersion control with the nominal angle being maintained down to 280 Hz.
The mid- and high-frequency sections, also horn-loaded, are coaxially mounted in the center of the cabinet, extending lower vocal directivity control and providing smooth mid/high transition.
The mid-frequency horn uses a 10-inch driver mounted coaxially behind the HF drivers, loaded by a mathematically complex, directivity control device that eliminates the HF section acoustic “shadow.” Due to the physical diameter of 10 inch driver it is impossible to achieve interference-free, close coupling of wave sources at the frequencies necessary to crossover with HF drivers, so a proprietary Wave Splitter device was developed.
The Wave Splitter causes the 10-inch driver to behave as twin adjacent 5-inch drivers mounted at half the physical distance. The distance between these adjacent virtual drivers is close enough to couple coherently in the vertical plane extending the upper frequency limit for line source behavior, projecting sound waves farther than traditional systems with a more evenly distributed sound output pattern.
In addition, the mid-frequency section employs a Correction Phase Device which equalizes speaker cone’s acoustical path lengths and thereby minimizes high-frequency cancelation and distortion caused by phase differences, greatly increasing the speaker’s ability to produce clear, accurate and “vocals-in-the-face” realistic sound. This device and the associated horn are optimized to create a high compression ratio which rises conversion efficiency to reach a sensitivity of 115 dB at 1W/1m in full space.
The high-frequency section consists of two 1.4-inch exit HF compression drivers with 2.5-inch voice coils mounted to a dedicated wave-shaping device. This unit is carefully designed so that each path-lengh from the throat to any part of the mouth is precisely identical, which provides accurate high frequency summing and the generation of a flat, isophasic wavefront.
The wave then exits by a diffraction slot to a constant directivity wave guide that spreads out evenly across the horizontal plane, producing a cylindrical wave that couples coherently, with minimal lobing, in the vertical plane while uniformly disperses on the, non-coupling, horizontal plane.
To preserve the acoustical integrity and the natural warmth, all the horns, wave guides and phase correctors are made of low resonance plywood or acoustically neutral polymers. The transducers are exclusively made by B&C Speakers.
The cabinet is constructed from genuine Baltic Birch plywood and has a black textured finish. The front of the cabinet is protected by a rigid metal grill and the side and rear panels incorporate four handles. Two Neutrik NL8 connectors wired in parallel are mounted at the
Beyonce Drummer Queen Cora On Sensaphonics 3D IEM System
System uses embedded microphones to capture the on-stage sound, allowing performers to hear everything around them
Drummer Queen Cora Dunham, currently on tour with Beyoncé, is utilizing a Sensaphonics 3D active ambient IEM system.
“I started using the Sensaphonics 3D in 2007 when I was with Prince,” Dunham notes, “and I’ve been using them ever since. It’s an amazing system, so versatile and comfortable – much better than regular in-ears.”
The 3D IEM system uses embedded microphones to capture the on-stage sound surrounding the performers, allowing them to hear everything around them while their ears remain safely and securely isolated. Dunham finds that she uses a variety of ambience settings, depending on the situation.
“There are certain things I have to hear, like audience response,” she explains. “Other times, I like having the option of complete isolation. So I experiment with it and use different settings for different shows. Usually, I run about 25 or 30 percent ambience along with my full mix, so I’m hearing my drums straight from the 3D mics.
“I also use the Full Ambient mode on solos so I can hear myself, just pure and acoustic, which sounds fantastic. I love that about the 3D.”
Dunham got her music industry start in Los Angeles after graduating from Howard University in Washington, DC. “I had gone to the IAJE jazz educators conference and met some A-list drummers like Ricky Lawson and Ndugu Chancler,” she recalls. “They talked me into staying for the NAMM show, which made me appreciate L.A. even more. After not getting into Julliard’s Jazz Studies program, I just decided to go for it and worked on establishing myself in L.A. until it didn’t matter where we lived anymore. Now Josh (Prince bassist Josh Dunham) and I are back in Houston.”
She raised her U.S. musical credentials in the 2002 national Guitar Center Drum Off, winning the grand prize of a Jeep Liberty over 5,000 other entrants. “That was quite a thing,” she says. “I had no vehicle at the time and was actually renting cars to get my drums to gigs around L.A. So that was the motivation. The competition was really strong, so to actually win… It was really a specific prayer being answered. I still have that jeep, and I will always be thankful for it.”
The Queen also carries the unique distinction of being the only drummer to play the Super Bowl twice – with Prince in 2007 and Beyoncé in 2013. “As far as I know, I think I’m the only drummer that’s played it twice,” she notes with a grin. “And I was using the 3D system both times. So Sensaphonics is a part of my little claim to fame.”
Beyoncé’s all-female touring band, the Suga Mamas, all wear Sensaphonics earphones. “It’s nice to work with someone who is that cutting-edge, always pushing the envelope for creativity,” says Dunham. “Beyoncé is committed to creating positive role models for young girls, which is something I definitely advocate. It’s an honor to be playing with such talented women.”
Audio-Technica To Hold “Ask Me Anything” Sessions At 135th AES Convention
Sessions can be viewed live and online from a variety of sources
Audio-Technica will be hosting several “Ask Me Anything” (AMA) question-and-answer sessions at its booth (2723) at the upcoming 135th AES Convention in New York.
Sessions are scheduled for two days of the convention: Friday, October 18, and Saturday, October 19. The session schedule is listed below, and additional details are available online here or at the Audio-Technica booth.
“Ask Me Anything” questions are fed to the presenters through a moderator during a 30-minute Q&A session. Questions can be submitted by individuals present at AES booth 2723; online at www.livestream.com (free registration); and by Twitter #ATliveAES.
In addition, you can watch during and after the event at www.audio-technica.com/aes2013 (also accessible from A-T’s website or Facebook page).
“Ask Me Anything” Schedule
Friday, October 18, 2013 (all times EDT)
1:00-1:30—Joel Singer, Grammy Award-winning engineer/mixer, co-founder and chief engineer of Music Mix Mobile
2:00-2:30—Jackie Green, VP R&D/Engineering at Audio-Technica
3:00-3:30—Frank Filipetti, Grammy Award-winning music producer, engineer and mixer
4:00-4:30—Richie Castellano, musician and YouTube sensation
Saturday, October 19, 2013 (all times EDT)
1:00-1:30—Richard Chycki, mixer, engineer and producer
2:00-2:30—Carl Tatz, TEC Award-nominated recording studio designer
3:00-3:30—Frank Wells, president of AES
4:00-4:30—Jimmy Douglass, Grammy Award-winning recording engineer/record producer
“We are very much looking forward to the AMA sessions at the AES Convention,” states Gary Boss, Audio-Technica marketing director. “This will be a wonderful opportunity to hear comments on a wide variety of topics from some of the leaders in their fields in an informal, no-holds-barred setting.
“And with the online presence, people who could not make the convention in person can get a taste of what the show has to offer and interact with these experts. We hope that this series of events will truly enhance the AES Convention experience for all who participate, and be the beginning a great tradition moving forward.”
Thursday, October 10, 2013
Sennheiser Microphones, Wireless For Bruno Mars Moonshine Jungle Tour
After trying various Sennheiser combinations, engineers choose SKM 5200 handheld transmitter with MD 5235 capsule
Bruno Mars just finished the North American leg of his Moonshine Jungle Tour, a run that consisted of over 40 U.S. and Canadian dates, and now continues on to Europe before setting out to Australia and New Zealand in early 2014. Both Mars and his band are utilizing Sennheiser microphones and wireless systems on the tour.
“When I took on the Bruno Mars gig over two and a half years ago, he and the background singers were using a competitor’s model. I just knew there was a better microphone and capsule combination for him,” recalls James Berry, monitor engineer for Bruno Mars. “I began transitioning the background singers first, then worked with the front-of-house guy to get Bruno to try a Sennheiser microphone. Now you couldn’t pry that microphone out of his hands if you tried.”
Derek Brener, who has been Bruno Mars’ front-of-house engineer for three and a half years, recalls a point where Bruno’s audio infrastructure took a huge step forward: “One of the main turning points was when James came in and said he would not use anything else but the Sennheiser wireless that’s when everything changed,” he says. “James is such a heavy hitter having worked with Beyoncé, Weezer and lots of other great bands, I trusted his opinion.”
After trying various Sennheiser capsule and transmitter combinations for some time, Berry and Brener eventually settled on an SKM 5200 handheld transmitter with an MD 5235 capsule.
“For me, the MD 5235 capsule punches through the PA system better than any other microphone we’ve used on Bruno Mars,” says Brener. “Bruno is very involved with Derek and me on the way things sound and has very clear ideas on what he wants and what he expects,” Berry adds. “Now, it is a comfort thing. Whether we are playing arenas, stadiums or awards shows, there is no debating he wants Sennheiser, and that’s what he’s going to get.”
For vocals and horns, the band’s wireless consists of 10 channels of Sennheiser EM 3732-II receivers, seven SKM 5200-II transmitters with MD 5235 capsules and three SK 5212-II bodypack transmitters.
Berry says that one of the primary reasons they chose the EM 3732-IIs was because of the AES3 digital output with external word clock synchronization: “We are clocking our wireless devices at 96 kHz to get the best sound quality we can. We didn’t consider anything other than this unit because we knew it would give us the best sound quality and reliability on the RF side.”
“For me, clocking at 96 kHz opens everything up so it sounds more full,” Berry continues. “You have the entire frequency expanse in there, and what you put in is what you get out. Therefore you can hear the Sennheiser MD 5235 microphone capsules we are using with even greater fidelity.”
The band also relies on Sennheiser for its wireless monitor systems, of which Berry has six channels of SR 2050 IEM. This covers the entire band, as well as off-stage technical staff. “I’ve used a lot of in-ear systems, and the reason I chose Sennheiser is because of sound quality,” says Berry. “The wireless IEMs deliver a wide stereo image so I can put things right into place where they need to go in my mix. For me, there is no other option than the 2k series because of that.”
For wireless audio at a performance at the MTV Video Music Awards in New York during the tour, one particular challenge was the large LED walls at the rear of the stage. “We had to shoot the wireless signal right through the LED walls,” Berry recalls. “We did a lot of pre-planning on antenna placement when we got there. It was all rock solid and performed flawlessly.”
The monitor crew used Sennheiser’s WSM software to save set-up time: “We used WSM to preload all the frequencies we were sent, so when we arrived, we just booted up the system and were ready to go in about 10 minutes. In the past, we would have had to go to every individual unit and program all this information in.” Berry also used the software to monitor each wireless element in real time: “I rely on WSM to see my battery and RF levels, as well as all the inputs and outputs,” he says.
All in all, over the course of the entire North American tour, the Sennheiser equipment has performed flawlessly, reports Brener: “We have never, ever experienced a drop out as long as we have had the Sennheiser wireless. It is all rock-solid. I have major confidence in Sennheiser.”