Monday, August 05, 2013
Renkus-Heinz VARIA: Detailing A New Modular Point-Source Array
Designed to enable arrays to be developed as singular point-source devices
When we first discussed VARIA, I have to admit my initial reaction was “too good to be true.”
The concept? The concept? Arrayable loudspeaker modules that combine into singular, point source devices. Modules are offered with a wide variety of coverage choices providing near infinite possibilities. Three dimensional coverage combinations simply chosen using angular and inverse square requirements of the room. Put more simply, a tribute to Leonardo da Vinci: “Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.”
Unlike typical line array loudspeakers, the technology inside VARIA allows it to scale large or small. VARIA is just at home in a 10,000 seat arena as a 200 seat auditorium. Array size does not calculate into the success of the concept.
Let’s set the framework: VARIA modules are divided into three enclosure types, based on vertical dispersion angle: 7.5, 15, and 22.5 degrees. These choices relate more to architecture than to acoustics, as they provide form fit to seating areas.
Each module is based on a simple 2-way configuration using 1-inch titanium/nitride neodymium compression drivers and 10-inch high-output woofers. Regardless of dispersion, the same internal geometry is maintained from a time origination standpoint, i.e., all modules have identical time signatures, regardless of angle chosen. This is true for all frequencies, since all modules have the same HF and LF components, and it’s crucial in producing a unified, coherent wavefront.
A cutaway view behind the grille of a VARIA module. (click to enlarge)
The high-frequency drivers are mated with a hybrid waveguide, a next-generation constant-directivity horn model. Instead of a traditional exponential/hyperbolic expansion throat section, it takes advantage of our proprietary path length correction technology, which takes energy from the driver (or set of drivers) and, much like a lens in optics, reshapes the wave to a calculated exit.
In this case, the exit is a conic horn section providing engineered directivity. Energy outside the operating angle is non-existent, or at the very least is reduced by a significant order of magnitude. Thus at high frequencies, the modules produce “seamless” coupling to each other. By seamless, I’m describing the absence of interference lobes, which can occur when two sources of similar strength — but different path lengths — combine. This destructive interference usually ruins array behavior (or requires extensive DSP to control).
Vertical coverage angles melded into a single array. (click to enlarge)
At low frequencies, VARIA becomes an array of woofers that combine in a very constructive manner. Using simple amplitude shading, constant directivity can be maintained throughout the woofers’ spectrum until the wavelength becomes larger than the array.
Within the three module classes (again, 7.5, 15, and 22.5 degrees vertical dispersion), VARIA offers eight horizontal coverage choices, including symmetric 60, 90, or 120 degrees; transitional 60/90 or 90/120 degrees; and asymmetrical 60/90, 60/120, or 90/120 degrees. Any and all combinations can be used within an array.
Of course, this all does indeed “sound too good to be true.” The proof is how it works in an actual application. Let’s use a megachurch model as an example, presenting a challenging acoustical environment combined with a high performance expectation.
A complete sound system layout has been constructed using EASE (Figure 1). The room offers basic dimensions of 200 x 160 x 40 feet (h x w x d), while the stage measures 75 x 40 x 4 feet.
Figure 1. (click to enlarge)
Overall internal volume of the room is 1,083,200 cubic feet. The RT60 at 2 kHz is 1.86 seconds and rises to 2.33 seconds at 125 Hz, while the average absorption coefficient is 0.28 at 2 kHz.
The stadium seating in the rear of the room rises from the flat floor to 22 feet. From stage front, the Inverse Square Law (ISL) differential from front seat to rear is 14 dB (Figure 2).
Flanking stage left and right are two walls, each with a very large video screen. This is a critical design element in the room, dictating the lowest suspension point (30 feet) for any loudspeaker.
Figure 2. (click to enlarge)
Typical of most worship venues, the room’s acoustics are a major factor. There is an equal programming emphasis on live musical performance and spoken word intelligibility, with high standards for both.
This particular geometry is a great example of a venue where large line arrays may not produce the desired results, mainly due to two major obstacles: video screen sightline requirements and the in-the-round audience layout.
A distributed array approach, on the other hand, appeared quite viable. VARIA’s flexibility in coverage patterns enabled a design where all arrays can line up precisely to each major seating section, creating strong acoustical cues to the stage (Figure 3). The arrays were designed strictly around angular coverage requirements.
Figure 3. (click to enlarge)
The center seating section was the starting point, and a simple evaluation shows that the center riser section spans a vertical angle of 16 degrees with a 4 dB ISL differential between front and back. The main floor spans a 58-degree vertical angle with a 9 dB ISL differential.
Therefore, it was logical to begin the array with two 7/60 modules (7.5 degrees vertical/60 degrees horizontal) aimed toward the riser section. My intuition suggested I first try to array these with little to no vertical splay rather than in modular point source mode (7.5-degree splay); however, this did not improve performance for reasons I’ll explain a bit later.
Coverage for the floor section was accomplished using 15/6, 15/12, and a 22/12 module, all configured in their natural splay. This created a unified 5-element point source loudspeaker that covered a 76-degree vertical angle, sculpted horizontally to the audience area.
ISL shaping was accomplished with simple gain adjustment to each module to achieve the results shown in Figure 4. (Note that at this point in the design phase, I wasn’t concerned with making this perfect, knowing that a “fine tune” process would be required once all devices were operating.)
Figure 4. (click to enlarge)
Similar to the center section, an array was created for each seating area. The sections on either side of center were accomplished with arrays of: 7/6, 7/6, 15/6, 15/6, 22/9. The seating section to stage left and right were accomplished with arrays of: 7/9, 15/9, 22/9.
The odd shape of the stage left and right areas presented a design decision that also correlates with the video requirements. For the seats underneath the video screens, viewing is augmented by large TV screens positioned just off stage.
I chose to put a fill loudspeaker above this area to provide better audio cues to the stage and visual media. A 22/6 module was used to fill the area with precision.
After all arrays were configured, individual gains were finalized, along with array rigging angles. Once the detailing was complete, I could have stopped here. General mapping was good.
Experience, however, has shown that in large rooms the areas near exits experience higher noise levels than the central seating areas.
In addition, and by design, these areas have a natural fall-off from the main loudspeakers. The best solution is to provide overhead fill to these seats.
This is by no means a new concept, but VARIA allows use of the same loudspeakers for these fills (in this case, six 22/12 units) as were used in the primary arrays. The sonic improvement is dramatic.
The finished system results are depicted in Figures 5, 6, 7, and 8 showing the DirSPL, C50, %ALcons, and SumSPL maps at 3 kHz (3 octaves).
It should be noted that the increase in overall level near the stage was intentional, and there’s no stage front fill system included in this mapping. It’s common practice in a room this size to do so, but would be a luxury in this case, not a requirement.
Returning now to the discussion of the design of the center section, it should be noted that to everyone’s benefit, line arrays have become a standard in sound reinforcement.
Figures 5 and 6. (click to enlarge)
However, as we try to design arrays that scale ever smaller, we find ourselves in cluster design once again with a familiar requirement: each device must have constant directivity.
To make matters more confusing, arrays do well when trying to restrict pattern, but do not react well when a wide pattern is needed.
In the example here, the best seats exist in the “underbelly” area of an array — not a good place to be. New developments in DSP and onboard amplification have greatly improved the ability of arrays (small and large).
Figures 7 and 8. (click to enlarge)
The Renkus-Heinz IC² (IC Squared) can do amazing things, and serves as a good example of what is possible and how far this technology has come. These new systems, however, are beyond the reach of many project budgets.
VARIA provides the ability to sculpt coverage patterns — complimentary to inverse square and room geometry — with no array size requirement and no special DSP. It represents a system designer’s custom loudspeaker shop in full force.
Paul Peace is senior loudspeaker engineer with Renkus-Heinz.
DPA Microphones Take Leading Role At La Jolla Playhouse At UCSD
DPA 2011C and 4061/4062 used during both student and staff productions
Many university theaters serve as teaching facilities for dramatic arts students as well as venues for professional productions, with the audio equipment neded to serve these dual purposes.
This is why the La Jolla Playhouse at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) recently added a variety of DPA Microphones d:dicate recording microphones, including 2011C twin diaphragm cardioid mics and 4061/4062 omindirectional miniature mics, which are used during both student and staff productions.
Together with the Globe Theater in San Diego, La Jolla Playhouse, consisting of five theater buildings that seat anywhere from 50 to 600 guests, has a reputation for sending more shows to Broadway than all other theaters in the country combined. This high level of exposure means that these venues must make sure its technologies are kept to high standards of performance.
“We premier a lot of new productions, which requires us to be flexible in our sound and video area because with works in progress things can change every day,” says Joe Huppert, sound and video supervisor for La Jolla Playhouse and the UCSD department for theater and dance. “In these situations, we also work directly with Broadway sound designers who have set ways of doing things, and they always expect us to have DPA Microphones.
“Our largest venue is just 600 seats, so we look for a realistic, somewhat intimate, sound reinforcement environment where we need high-quality sound rather than high levels of sound. All of the DPA mics that I’ve encountered have filled these needs.”
Primarily used on instruments and as foot mics, DPA Microphones is a regular part of the La Jolla rotation. The theater also recently embedded its 2011C mics in various areas of the stage for “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” for which the actors climbed around the set, and one was even suspended upside down, six feet above the stage. In this production, the sound team was able to pick up the audio for all of the performers.
In addition to hosting professional productions, La Jolla Playhouse’s five theaters also are home to a variety of student-run shows and university events. Supported by the venue’s professional carpenters, electricians and sound technicians, the students are mentored on what audio equipment will work best for their production. They ultimately take this gear and implement it on the stage.
“Since UCSD’s students use our sound equipment, it is very important that it always works well,” explains Huppert. “We’ve used some other brands as foot mics, but we found them to be much more difficult to EQ and get a good sound. When we throw in a really good mic, like DPA, it makes it easier for us to teach our students how to get a good production.”
The theater also occasionally rents DPA 4021 compact cardioid mics to use in addition to the 2011Cs as foot mics for its high-end performances, such as the Second City Comedy Troupe that often performs at the school. At these times, Huppert calls on the theater’s sound designer, Eric Stahlhammer, owner of Greater Sound Designs, to specify the gear.
“The DPA mics are just way better in terms of flatter response, full coverage and off-axis response,” says Stahlhammer of the 4021s and 2011s. “We didn’t have an issue with feedback and what was going into the microphone was clean from the PA. Joe [Huppert] was in need of a small shotgun foot mic for Second City, and we both had good luck when we tested the 4021.
“We ultimately selected the 2011C because we saw it as an interesting option that was great for this application because of its tighter pattern. DPA has an incredible reputation for producing top of the line, world class stuff and when we saw this microphone, we knew it was a good option.”
The next show that will feature the DPA mics is the theater’s summer production of Sideways the Play performed by the Ruskin Group Theatre Company. Adapted by Rex Pickett from his own novel, Sideways is the comedic story of two friends, Miles and Jack, and their epic journey across the Santa Ynez wine country before Jack gets married. For this production, Huppert is using the DPA mics in a close-quarters trap position.
Sennheiser RF Wireless Sound Academy Seminar Coming To New York City On August 13
Single-day workshop covers creating trouble-free RF wireless operation
Sennheiser will be presenting its RF Wireless Sound Academy Seminar in New York City on Tuesday, August 13 in mid-town Manhattan.
The seminar costs $199 and includes continental breakfast, full lunch, workshop materials, and a $50 rebate coupon good towards Sennheiser and Neumann products.
Participants who complete the seminar will earn 6 RU CTS credits.
This single-day workshop is designed to teach attendees how to plan for trouble-free operation of multi-channel wireless microphones and wireless personal monitoring systems in even the toughest environments. Topics will include:
• Tips and tricks to maximize reliability
• Reserving TV channels for events on the new FCC spectrum database system
• Best practices for system planning and frequency coordination
• Working with wireless monitoring systems
• New developments in digital RF systems
The event will feature experts in the field including host and presenter Joe Ciaudelli, Uwe Sattler of Sennheiser, Broadway RF and audio engineer Andrew Funk, and Henry Cohen, senior RF engineer at CP Communications specializing in FCC compliance. Following are details on the event and how to register:
• Where: Musicians Union Local 802, 322 W 48th St., New York City
• When: Tuesday, August 13th 2013 between 9:30 a.m. and 5 p.m.
• Cost/registration: $199 per participant.
Complete registration details, bios of guest speakers and more information are available here.
Mackie Debuts New VLZ4 Series Mixers With Onyx Mic Preamps (Includes Video)
Eight new VLZ4 mixer models directly replace the previous VLZ3 generation models
Mackie has introduced the all-new VLZ4 line of analog compact mixers, which include the company’s Onyx microphone preamplifiers.
The eight new VLZ4 mixer models directly replace the previous VLZ3 generation models and range from the affordable desktop 402VLZ4 to a choice of 4-bus effects mixers that are well suited for touring live sound work. The inclusion of Onyx mic preamps offers a notable performance improvement over previous generations.
“Just check out the wealth of amazing reviews and customer testimonials. Our Onyx preamps have proven they can go toe-to-toe with any boutique preamp out there,” states Matt Redmon, Mackie product manager. “By delivering this level of performance to the VLZ4 line, more users than ever will benefit from the sound of these amazing pres. It’s very exciting.”
The VLZ4 Series is also outfitted with other key technologies that emphasize the broadcast-quality performance of the mixers, including custom op-amps and class-leading negative summing bus architecture. Maximum signal integrity, from every input to every output, delivers high headroom and low noise.
Solid steel wraparound chassis and grime-resistant sealed rotary pots ensure that VLZ4 mixers are “built-like-a-tank,” ready for the road.
“From beer spills to drops from moving vehicles…we’ve seen it all,” notes Redmon. “We have literally run them over with a truck and they still passed signal. The rugged design of VLZ4 is unique in the industry and it always amazes us to hear user stories revealing what they are capable of handling.”
VLZ4 mixers also deliver a new high-contrast, ergonomic work surface that’s optimum for low-light applications like clubs and studios. The bold knobs and fader caps sit against a cockpit-inspired work surface with a black powder-coat finish, providing the contrast needed for easy control identification.
The new VLZ4 Series will be available beginning August, 2013.
For more specific information, go here.
Pricing (U.S. MSRP):
Mackie VLZ4 Page
Powersoft Reaches Milestone Of 600 Million Watts Of Audio Power
"600millionresons" campaign continues through August
Powersoft has announced that it has reached the milestone of delivering 600 million watts of audio power around the world.
Reaching the notable figure has been 15 years in the making, in which time the company has strived to supply very high quality, efficient power amplifiers.
“We recently had a count and realized that we were getting close to the 600 million watts mark,” explains Luca Giorgi, Powersoft audio BU director. “We were still missing about 3 million watts, and it became our goal to achieve this target before the end of August (2013).”
Powersoft marketing and communication manager Francesco Fanicchi adds, “To help reach this landmark figure, we needed to come up with an effective promotion, so we created the ‘600millionreason’ campaign. Announcing the promotion through all of our communication channels, we invited visitors to register on a dedicated website and to join our cause.”
The 600millionreasons campaign has proven to be a success, with the company reaching its goal after just three weeks, selling several hundred K10 and K20 amplifiers in a matter of days.
While the idea of 600 million watts can conjure up images of consumption, the company notes that what needs to be evaluated is the other side of the coin: how much energy has been saved?
If done well, switching mode technology for power amplification is intrinsically efficient, and a hallmark of the Powersoft design approach has always paid a great deal attention to maximizing these characteristics and designing products that minimize energy consumption.
“If we compare our top level touring amplifiers with those of our competitors using more traditional technology,” notes Giorgi, “the benefits quickly add up.”
For example, a comparison of two systems running 600 megawatts of audio power, at full power, for one hour. The first system incorporates Powersoft PWM switch mode amplifiers, while the second utilizes traditional linear amplifiers.
With 85- to 90-percent efficiency, the power required to run the Powersoft amps produces somewhere in the region of 24 tonnes (or megagrams) of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions less than the linear amps, meaning that on average the Powersoft amps can save about half kilograms per hour of CO2 (1/4 of full output power at 4 ohms).
The company also notes that even though the original target has been reached, the 600millionreasons campaign will continue as planned until the end of August. For more information, go to www.600millionreasons.com
Sunday, August 04, 2013
nobeo Installs Riedel Gear In Unique @-car Mobile Unit
The Riedel gear enabled nobeo to build flexible, top-quality signal distribution and communications into a compact and versatile mobile production unit -- the new @-car.
Riedel Communications announced that German broadcaster nobeo has integrated the Riedel MediorNet Compact real-time media network, Artist digital matrix intercom, and Performer digital partyline systems into its new “@-car,” a unique production vehicle tailored for direct Internet broadcasts.
The Riedel gear enabled nobeo to build flexible, top-quality signal distribution and communications into a compact and versatile mobile production unit. Germany’s sono Studiotechnik GmbH designed and integrated the @-car’s for nobeo.
“We already used the Riedel Artist system with success in our 16-camera OB truck, so Riedel’s MediorNet was an easy choice for the @-car,” said Guido Amann, chief technology officer at nobeo. “In addition to meeting our specs for size, weight, and performance, the MediorNet system supports all required signals in a single 3RU box and enables fast configuration.
“It’s a perfect fit for talk show productions, live TV reports, sports events, press conferences, live webcasts, concert productions, or just for streaming.”
nobeo’s @-car is equipped with a combination of broadcast equipment and specific IT components that together offer ample capacity for multicamera productions using up to six cameras. Thus, within the traditional TV sector, the @-car serves as a complement to the larger OB vehicles typically deployed.
However, the @-car’s individual capabilities mean that it is valuable as a stand-alone unit not only for Web TV and live streaming applications, but also for any production in which space is limited or where technical requirements are straightforward.
The MediorNet Compact PRO system installed in the @-car supports 12 HD-SDI inputs and four HD-SDI outputs. The mobile unit also is outfitted with an Artist 32 digital matrix intercom system and Performer digital partyline, along with control panels, beltpacks, and professional headsets from Riedel. sono Studiotechnik also provided nobeo with 100 meters of Riedel’s Pure XTR-Q fiber cabling.
MediorNet users working in the @-car can send any incoming signal to any output — or even to multiple outputs — with just a mouse-click or with a router control system. A fiber-optic-cabled MediorNet Stagebox — situated in the truck or used elsewhere — further simplifies cabling at the production location.
As social media continues to grow in importance, and the ability to provide video increases in value, small- and medium-sized businesses and events are taking advantage of the @-car for cost-effective productions on a smaller scale.
The @-car allows operators to perform encoding of the signal into diverse streams, as well as file-based recording and transmission of the signal to the Internet via IP uplink. Within the 5-meter truck, two workstations support creation of the final visual signal, augmented by one multifunctional workstation for encoding, uplink, and similar tasks.
Posted by Julie Clark on 08/04 at 03:01 PM
Friday, August 02, 2013
Ashly Audio Appoints National Audio Systems (NAS) As Australian Distributor
NAS is a leading audio supplier for the professional, commercial, and MI vertical markets
Ashly Audio has appointed National Audio Systems (NAS) to distribute its products throughout Australia.
Headquartered in Melbourne, and with satellite offices in Sydney, Brisbane and Perth, NAS has grown in the 15 years since its founding to become a trusted audio supplier for the professional, commercial, and MI vertical markets. Ashly joins NAS’ prestigious line card that includes d&b audiotecnik, Midas, Klark-Teknik, Cloud, SoundTube, Listen, Chiayo, and inDesign.
“We are happy to work with Ashly because we like the direction they are heading and the range of products they make,” says Richard Hulston, commercial audio sales specialist with NAS. “Ashly just licensed Audinate’s Dante digital network, and they are issuing a new DSP and amplifier series that meet the evolving needs of integrators.
“We see Ashly as a company developing relevant and new products that will satisfy the needs of our customers. We look forward to developing the Ashly brand within our portfolio and within the Australian market. We will build brand awareness amongst our customers through support and training and establish Ashly as a preferred product.”
Anthony Errigo, Ashly director of marketing communications, notes, “National Audio Systems is small enough to care and big enough to matter, without losing focus on the fact they are in business for their customers and suppliers. They have an established reputation of looking out for the needs of their customers and commanding an authoritative knowledge of the latest in audio equipment and trends. We at Ashly are pleased to be partnering with them in Australia.”
National Audio Systems
Meyer Sound Presents Three Technical Papers On Active Acoustics At Montreal ICA
All three available via free download
At the 21st International Congress on Acoustics (ICA) in Montreal, Meyer Sound led three technical paper presentations focusing on the latest advances and applications of active acoustics, a field that has garnered widespread interest amongst multipurpose venues and the acoustics community.
All three papers are publicly available on the Acoustical Society of America website.
“Optimizing Acoustics for Spoken Word Using Active Acoustics” was co-authored by Steve Ellison, Meyer Sound’s applications director for digital products, and Pierre Germain, senior acoustic engineer. The paper discusses the theoretical and practical issues involved in designing room acoustics for optimum intelligibility across various uses, and describes an active acoustic system capable of optimizing early reflections in different scenarios. Download the full paper here.
In addition, “Electronically Variable Room Acoustics—Motivations and Challenges” was written and presented by K. Anthony Hoover, FASA, principal at McKay Conant Hoover Inc. in Westlake Village, Calif., and Ellison. The authors presented a case study including both passive and active acoustic treatment for a proposed renovation of the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium that would enable the historic preservation of the venue while supporting a wide range of uses, including conferences, rock and pop shows, and orchestral performances. Download the full paper here.
Lastly, Roger Schwenke, Ph.D., staff scientist at Meyer Sound, presented his paper at ICA entitled “Active Acoustics and Sound Reinforcement at TUI Operettenhaus, Hamburg.” Schwenke’s case study examines the unique integration of active acoustics and sound reinforcement system design in a theatrical space. This combination allows the same system components to be utilized for both extension of room reverberation and creative applications of spatial surround effects. Download the full paper here.
The 2013 ICA was held in June at Montreal’s Palais des congrès jointly with the 165th meeting of the Acoustical Society of America and the 52nd Meeting of the Canadian Acoustical Association.
In addition to the ICA conference, Schwenke and Ellison also presented their paper “Active Acoustics in Physically Variable Spaces” at the International Symposium on Room Acoustics in Toronto, a satellite conference of the ICA.
The paper offers an overview of venues that use active acoustic systems as they alter room size or arrangement through subdivisions or other methods, and is available in the proceedings document of the conference.
Behringer X32 COMPACT Digital Live/Recording Mixer Now Available
Well-suited for small to mid-size venues or for any larger venue wishing to add a side-stage monitor console
The new Behringer X32 COMPACT 40-input digital mixer is now shipping, offering a diverse feature set and host of connectivity options.
The X32 COMPACT’s local connectivity includes 16 XLR inputs, 8 XLR outs, 6 Aux I/O and expands to its full 40-input, 25-bus capacity when used with the company’s optional S16 digital stage box.
The mixer is also outfitted an ULTRANET port for sending 16 channels of audio via Cat-5e cable to Behringer’s optional P16 personal monitoring system.
X32 COMPACT has an 8-slot, stereo FX engine, and registered owners are entitled to a free copy of Tracktion 4 audio production software to take advantage of the included 32 x 32 channel USB 2.0 recording interface.
Additionally, the onboard 2-track USB recorder can record any two channels of audio assigned to it in the routing menu.
Finally, the console is equipped with Midas-designed programmable mic preamps and Klark Teknik AES50 networking technology.
MUSIC Group marketing SVP Costa Lakoumentas states, “Our new X32 COMPACT console puts full-scale digital recording and live sound mixing within the grasp of an entirely new market. Now houses of worship, concert venues and the like can benefit from the X32’s amazing technology and intuitive workflow, even if space or budget constraints prohibit a larger console. The addition of free Tracktion 4 Music Production software provides a complete live sound and studio solution.”
The X32 COMPACT is available through authorized dealers and online retailers at an estimated MAP of $2.499.99 (USD), and is covered by MUSIC Group’s 3-year limited warranty program.
L-Acoustics K1 Supplied By LD Systems Is Big News At Houston’s Free Press Summer Festival
K1 arrays deliver sound reinforcement for more than 100.000 concert-goers
Over the past five years, the Free Press Summer Festival (FPSF), staged at Eleanor Tinsley Park just west of downtown Houston, has quickly grown into one of Texas’ most eagerly anticipated music festivals.
This year notably marked the first time that the event completely sold out in advance, ultimately drawing nearly 100,000 concert-goers to enjoy 90 national and local artists performing on six stages over two days.
Houston’s LD Systems once again served as the primary audio, video and lighting provider for FPSF 2013 and supplied production gear and services for the festival’s four primary stages. This year, however, the company chose to deploy L-Acoustics K1 systems on the two largest stages, Mars and Saturn.
FPSF’ Mars stage featured night-closing performances from EDM superstars Bassnectar and Calvin Harris preceded by a broad spectrum of musical artists like Of Monsters and Men, TV on the Radio, Mavis Staples, Alabama Shakes, Passion Pit and Cat Power. Saturn stage hosted an equally eclectic variety of performances ranging from The Postal Service, Gogol Bordello and Matt & Kim to Macklemore and Ryan Lewis, Geto Boys and The Mavericks.
According to LD Systems director of production services Robert Ausmus, both the Mars and Saturn stages utilized identical main hangs comprised of 10 K1 per side, each featuring three KARA for down fill. For low-frequency reinforcement, Mars flew six K1-SB per side just outside of the K1 hangs, supplemented by 18 SB28 groundstacked subs spread out across the face of the stage, while Saturn relied solely on two dozen groundstacked SB28.
A total of 22 KUDO on each stage served as flown out fills and off stage fills. Two ARCS atop two SB28 per side delivered side fill for the stages, and several KARA were additionally called upon for stage apron fill. Various quantities of 115XT HiQ, KARA and SB18 were also deployed as needed for stage monitoring, and all FOH and monitor systems were LA8-powered and processed.
“Having been a part of the Free Press Summer Festival from the very start, it’s exciting for us to see it grow from less than 10,000 people to 100,000 in just five years,” says Ausmus. “Omar Afra at Free Press Houston and Jagi Katial at Pegstar Concerts have a real genius for assembling an increasingly diverse roster of hip talent that has really helped drive their success since 2009.
“Last year, after hearing that we had invested in an L-Acoustics K1 system for RodeoHouston, they asked if it would be appropriate for their festival as well. We told them that K1 would greatly elevate their production values, help attract higher-profile artists and continue to build up the FPSF brand, which it certainly has. Every artist walked away from this year’s festival completely satisfied and the producers were ecstatic with how everything sounded, especially on the monster Bassnectar and Calvin Harris shows at the end of each night.”
NSCA’s Best Practices Conference Provides Year’s Worth Of Training In 1.5 Days
NSCA's Best Practices Conference offers all the education your employees need, wrapped up in one easy, convenient, and affordable event being held throughout the country.
NSCA’s Best Practices Conference (BPC) series provides a year’s worth of training in just one-and-a-half days The event offers industry-specific networking and discussions with your peers about finance, operations, project management, and sales.
The 2013 regional events are scheduled for:
• September 30-October 1 – Dallas, TX
• October 16-17 – Anaheim, CA
• November 12-13 – Boston, MA
BPC offers all the education your employees need, wrapped up in one easy, convenient, and affordable event being held throughout the country.
Created for systems integrators’ management teams, BPC offers hands-on, tactical training that will save money on travel, reduce time away from the office, and help your team meet its performance and education goals.
BPC combines manufacturer and business-specific training along with networking, keynotes, and roundtable discussions focused on regional issues.
This combination allows you and your staff to immediately implement the skills gained at the event, putting money right back in your pocket.
Four tracks are offered at BPC: Finance, Operations, Project Management, and Sales. The Finance track offers sessions aimed at providing tools to improve cash flow and track performance measures. Send your finance professional to attend these sessions:
Cash: The Lifeblood of Your Company
Presented by Ernie Schirmer, R.G. Vanderweil Engineers Technology Design Group
A profitable business doesn’t always equal a positive cash flow. Learn ways to better manage and project cash flow. This course will provide the tools you need in order to:
• Improve the budgeting process
• Project and plan for cash flow
• Establish effective and beneficial banking relationships
• Create a system for collections of receivables
• Maintain contracted payment terms and schedules
Manage Metrics with a Dashboard
Presented by Leslie Shiner, The ShinerGroup
A financial dashboard can serve as an early warning system about a company’s financial stability. This session explains ways to use a dashboard that are specific to your company,
department, and projects. Attendees will also learn how to monitor and measure performance metrics that are most critical to their own business. Come out ahead by attending this session and discovering how to:
• Use metrics to manage departments more effectively
• Create a dashboard and explore which numbers to track on a regular basis
• Establish key performance indicators and measurements
• Develop a system of accountability for different functions within a department
NSCA members receive 10% off registration costs by using the code CORPCONT. Registration for the one-and-a-half day event is just $299 for NSCA members and $399 for non-members. Registration includes manufacturer training, networking events, and all courses.
Thursday, August 01, 2013
Atlas Sound Now Shipping BlueBridge Series Digital Processors
Offer drag and drop, open architecture software and can operate on any network
Atlas Sound has announced that all models in the new BlueBridge family of DSP audio products first shown at InfoComm 2013 in Orlando are now shipping.
BlueBridge products offer drag and drop, open architecture software and can operate on any network. Each model utilizes high-quality THAT microphone preamps and 24-bit converters to obtain ultra-low noise floor while still maintaining a smooth sound that satisfies the needs of demanding clients, with the flexibility and control a system designer requires.
BlueBridge models also use a 40-bit floating-point DSP engine to prevent digital clipping and to obtain maximum speed and power to process advanced algorithms in complex system designs. Units are available in configurations ranging from 2 I/O to 16 I/O, with using the same DSP engine.
Additionally, Atlas offers four models that have Dante inputs/outputs allowing for true digital audio transmission over the network.
“This is the most anticipated product release that Atlas has had in years”, says Dan Murphy, senior vice president of digital systems at Atlas Sound. “This was the most talked about product in our booth at the InfoComm show this year, and we have had hundreds of users download the software since it was released. Now that the processors are available our customers can start using the entire platform and they can see just how powerful and easy to use BlueBridge is.”
The BlueBridge platform also includes a system manager that allows for third party hardware integration and remote control and a 16-input/16-output expansion box with Dante.
A selection of wall controllers and touch panels will be released soon to complement the audio processors and allow for total system control and configuration capability.
RCF Chosen For System Upgrade At Icon Ultra Lounge In Los Angeles
HDL 20-A line arrays with SUB 8006-AS subwoofers for the main dance floor
Located in the heart of Los Angeles, the Icon Ultra Lounge has been a nightlife hotspot since its doors opened in 2011, featuring DJs that perform in the 4,000 square-foot lounge and also on a similarly sized rooftop.
Until recently the lounge and rooftop used a rented sound reinforcement system, but after Arthur Guzman, general manager at ACI Pro Audio, put on an event at the lounge he left with ideas on how to improve the situation. The venue’s ownership agreed with him, and he recently finished implementing two new systems.
“Right off the bat I knew RCF would fit their budget and system requirements,” explains Guzman. “We did a demo of HDL 20-A line array boxes with the SUB 8006-AS subwoofers, and they were really, really impressed.”
He specified dual flown arrays of four HDL 20-A boxes for the main dance floor in the lounge. The active loudspeakers are loaded with two 10-inch woofers and a 3-inch compression driver, and are specified with a maximum SPL rating of 135 dB.
The arrays are accompanied by six of the dual 18-inch SUB 8006 dual-18 subwoofers, positioned in stacks of three at both sides of the DJ booth.
“One of the keys was demonstrating the SUB 8006 subs in a cardioid pattern,” adds Guzman. “The old system had double 18-inch subs that shook the entire building. The RCF subs offered a much more musical experience even at a high SPL – so they could be loud but still sound great.”
Meanwhile, on the rooftop, it was important that the system meet both the customer and neighborhood expectations, the latter because the building is surrounded by multi-story condominium complexes. As a result, sound needs to be contained, with minimal spill-over into the night air.
For this application Guzman chose RCF P Series all-weather loudspeakers, with six P5228-L weatherproof two-way line array modules positioned around the dance floor – three per side, mounted on ceiling height trusses.
Four P4228 loudspeakers are mounted on columns throughout the nearby seating area to expand the music experience, with low-end supplied by four more SUB 8006 subwoofers stacked in twos on each side of the DJ booth. QSC PLX Series amplifiers, rack mounted by the DJ booth, power the loudspeakers
“The P5228 doesn’t have a super-wide coverage pattern making it easy to cover the dance floor and not much else,” Guzman says. “They also wanted the outdoor system to be as inconspicuous as possible – the P5228 are compact and fit perfectly on the trusses without hanging down. The sound was contained without any sacrifice of SPL.
“The owners are absolutely thrilled with the sound quality,” Guzman concludes. “They have the option of easily adding on if they feel they need more volume – but right now they think it is perfect. The audio quality maintains even when pushing the system. I could not have asked for more out of a club system.”
Lab.gruppen Introduces New LUCIA Decentralized Installation Amplifier
LUCIA (Localized Utility Compact Intelligent Amplification) is a compact and versatile Energy Star compliant Class D amplifier platform from Lab.gruppen packed with the innovative features and superior sonic performance.
Lab.gruppen has launched its new install dedicated amplifier range, LUCIA, an amplifier that puts power and audio processing exactly where it is needed.
Addressing the specific needs of the AV contractor market for high quality, localized audio systems, the 2-channel LUCIA (Localized Utility Compact Intelligent Amplification) is a compact and versatile Energy Star compliant Class D amplifier platform, packed with the innovative features and superior sonic performance.
Designed with speed of install and easy configuration in mind, LUCIA combines cutting edge low-impedance amplifier electronics with advanced DSP in the smallest amplifier the company has ever produced.
LUCIA offers designers a more logical and cost-effective solution that ideal for small-scale AV application that require high quality audio with the complication and cost of a distributed system with centralize rack-mounted amplification, matrixing and processing. LUCIA is ideally suited for corporate boardrooms, classrooms and small lecture theatres, museum multi-media areas and retail units.
The new amplifier range comprises of 4 models across 2 power configurations – 2 x 60 W and 2 x 120 W – each available with either 4-in, 4-out matrix-mixer and configurable DSP features (LUCIA 120/2M, LUCIA 240/2M) or in a basic 2-in 2-out configuration (LUCIA 120/2 and LUCIA 240/2).
While all models are equipped with DSP pre-configured for operation in typical applications, the Matrix variants also facilitate easy setup via USB connection (with Windows and Mac LUCIA configuration software) to unlock the full potential of the processing and mix-matrix to meet specific system requirements.
Featuring classic Lab.gruppen limiters and mastering quality EQ and processing algorithms evolved from TC Electronic’s industry leading System 6000, LUCIA is a true synthesis of TC Group’s technologies – bringing truly exceptional sonic performance to this type of product for the first time.
Among other advanced DSP features, the new Enhanced Bass Profile delivers greatly improved LF performance from standard full-range in-ceiling or surface mount loudspeakers, to the extent that the need for a separate subwoofer may be negated – saving both time and cost.
These intelligent amplifiers also benefit from an Auto Load Sense feature, with the device automatically measuring the impedance of a connected loudspeaker load and adjusting itself accordingly to deliver full power, at all impedances (2 – 8 ohm). All LUCIA models also come with intelligent fan control for silent operation at low volumes, and low-noise even at high output when fan is operational.
“LUCIA breaks new ground for Lab.gruppen, at the same time drawing on our knowledge and expertise in powerful, energy efficient amplification,” Klas Dalbjorn, Lab.gruppen’s Product Research Manager for Install Products explains. “Like E Series, LUCIA is Energy Star compliant, and is built upon proven Class D technology. The ease of install, ease of use and relatively low through-life cost make this a very compelling choice in today’s marketplace.”
Conceivably, each LUCIA model could drive up to 16 speakers on a localized low-impedance system (8 per channel – if the loudspeakers were 16 ohms). Tailor made presets will be available for Tannoy’s commercial loudspeaker ranges, along with additional hardware accessories to provide mounting flexibility.
JBL Professional Debuts PRX700 Series Portable PA Loudspeakers
Seven new models offering a multitude of choices when tailoring a system to specific needs
JBL Professional has introduced the PRX700 Series portable loudspeakers, comprised of seven new models.
“The PRX700 Series not only resets the standard for quality and portability, but also allows users to create the precise system they need from a high-performance family of full-range and subwoofer models,” says Andy Flint, senior manager, Portable PA Marketing, JBL Professional.
“Each model is designed for specific applications, but integrates seamlessly with one another, offering a multitude of choices when tailoring a system to specific needs,” he continues. “In particular, the new PRX710 and PRX715XLF models offer customers even more options than ever before.”
PRX700 Series models include the PRX710 10-inch, 2-way multipurpose loudspeaker; the PRX712 12-inch 2-way multipurpose loudspeaker and floor monitor; the PRX715 15-inch, 2-way full-range main system/floor monitor; the PRX725 15-inch, 2-way bass reflex loudspeaker; the PRX735 15-inch, 3-way full-range loudspeaker; the PRX715XLF 15-inch self-powered bass reflex subwoofer system; and the PRX718XLF 18-inch self-powered bass reflex subwoofer system.
All PRX700 Series loudspeakers are powered with efficient 1,500-watt Class-D amplification. New Differential Drive woofers provide improved heat dissipation, lower power compression and higher dynamic range versus conventional single-coil designs. In addition, the woofers use magnetically saturated pole-pieces and an aluminum shorting ring, which significantly reduces nonlinear distortion.
The PRX700 Series also incorporates JBL’s patented waveguide technology, providing very good coverage throughout the system’s bandwidth. The sound is smooth and consistent without hotspots, so control is optimized. All models offer coverage of 90 degrees (horizontal) x 50 degrees (vertical), which the exception of the PRX710, which offers coverage of 100 degrees (horizontal) x 60 degrees (vertical).
The input panel on the full-range models (PRX710, PRX712, PRX715, PRX725, PRX735) offers a variety of features for maximum flexibility and control, highlighted by two balanced XLR-1/4-inch combination inputs and two unbalanced RCA inputs. Other features include a signal presence LED for each channel, selectable system EQ (Normal and Boost for 710, 725, 735; Main and Monitor for 712, 715); a Mic/Line switch for channel 1 and Ground Lift for CH2.
The input panel on the low-frequency models (PRX715XLF and PRX718XLF) also offers a wealth of options, including: a Signal Presence LED for each channel; a Polarity button; a Pass Thru button for Hi Pass or Full Range; a balanced XLR-1/4” combo input for channels 1 and 2; balanced XLR Loop Thru output connectors; and a front LED On/Off button.
All PRX700 cabinets are built from a combination of 25 mm (on the top and bottom for added rigidity) and 18 mm, strong, lightweight poplar plywood made structurally sound with tongue and groove joints (compared to competitive models that use 15 mm plywood).
The cabinets are finished with JBL’s tour-proven DuraFlex finish, a dent-resistant 16-guage steel grill, and lightweight glass-filled nylon handles to ensure strength and durability. In addition, rigging points, pole sockets and vulcanized feet promote easy setup and total versatility.
“With the new PRX700 Series, superior sound, power and connectivity while on the move is possible for virtually any application and scalable for any budget!” Flint concludes.