Thursday, December 18, 2014
The Wave Builds With Martin Audio Subwoofers
Las Vegas-based production company adds a dozen WS218X subwoofers to inventory
Specializing in audio production, rentals and sales, Las Vegas-based The Wave recently added a dozen of Martin Audio WS218X subwoofers to its growing inventory.
“We wanted additional low end reinforcement for live shows and DJ events, and chose the Martin Audio WS218X because it’s a good sounding, high output subwoofer from a brand known and respected by engineers and audio people around the world,” states Scott Fisher, owner of The Wave. “Getting these was a win-win all the way around.”
Fisher also has a Martin Audio monitor rig consisting of 14 LE1200 wedges, which he likes because “they’re rider friendly, work well and are very reliable.”
The first outing for the new subwoofers was a country concert at Drai’s Nightclub at the Cromwell Las Vegas and Casino featuring Texas artist Pat Green as headliner and opening act The Dirty River Boys. The concert took place during National Finals Rodeo, a 10-day event when Las Vegas gets very country because the event sells out the Thomas and Mack Center which seats over 18,000 people.
“In terms of the show, everything went really well with the subs even though it was the first time out,” Fisher says. “The front of house engineers for both bands, Luke Wilbanks for the Dirty River Boys and Braxton Henry for Pat Green, were super happy. They thought everything sounded great.
“The guy in charge of sound at Drai’s, who usually prefers another brand of speakers, thought the WS218X’s sounded really good and tight. He we was so impressed that we already have other shows booked in the room.”
“After the show,” Fisher concludes, “my systems tech, who was also very impressed, told me that we’d made a really good purchase. I knew the WS218Xs were going to perform well, but the overall reaction has been way more positive than I expected.”
Posted by Keith Clark on 12/18 at 12:59 PM
Coming Up: SynAudCon Wireless & OptEQ In-Person Training Workshops In January
Each is an in-depth, 2-way seminar, hosted back-to-back at the American Airlines Convention Center
SynAudCon is presenting “Making Wireless Work” and “OptoEQ” in-person training workshops in Dallas this coming January (2015). Note that SynAudCon in-person workshops usually sell out, so those interested in attending should register as soon as possible.
“Making Wireless Work” is a 2-day seminar focusing on wireless microphone technologies, frequency coordination, band planning, RF fundamentals, FCC and spectrum allocation issues, and site survey commissioning procedures. It will be held in Dallas on January 3 and 4, 2015 at the American Airlines Convention Center.
Top wireless professionals, including noted RF consultant James Stoffo, who also works with Radio Active Designs, as well as Karl Winkler of Lectrosonics and Tim Vear of Shure, will share their extensive knowledge about how to best utilize wireless systems in audio applications. The instructors from the manufacturing side will provide “under the hood” expertise on how products function, while the instructors from the non-manufacturer side will offer an objective perspective and show how to implement optimum solutions.
Those interested in staying in Dallas for an additional 2 days can also take advantage of SynAudCon’s “OptEQ” in-person seminar being held January 5 and 6 (2015), also at the American Airlines Convention Center
OptEQ will present a comprehensive approach to sound system tuning that combines contemporary and legacy design and equalization practices into a logical, accurate and repeatable process. Instructors are Pat Brown, John Murray and Deward Timothy.
The cost for each workshop is $750. Get more information and register for one or both workshops at www.prosoundtraining.com or by calling Brenda Brown at 812-923-0174. And, note that these workshops have been submitted for Renewal Units.
Wednesday, December 17, 2014
K-array Selected For Top New Shanghai Club In New Application For Firenze Series
Meeting dual needs for more subtle audio in a restaurant right next to a driving nightclub system
Following up on a recent project at the Shanghai Concert Hall that saw a wide range of K-array loudspeakers deployed in the historic facility, an additional system featuring the company’s Firenze Series of loudspeakers were chosen for a new club above the concert hall that overlooks the Shanghai Grand Theatre, Shanghai Museum, People’s Square and many other iconic spots.
The new club venue, which just opened in October and is adjacent to adjacent high-end Italian restaurant Luce della Vita, has already created a buzz as a top hot spot in Shanghai, in part due to an ambitious sound design combined with great music.
When the team from Sennheiser China approached the project, they decided to challenge the new K-array Firenze Series—models KH8 and KS8—within an indoor installation, the first application of it’s kind for the series.
Club ownership wanted a driving club sound, but on the other hand, the nearby restaurant needed background music to blend into the aesthetics and create a more relaxed atmosphere. It was a complicated task to prevent crossover with two extremely different audio requirements.
A perspective of the new club in Shanghai.
For the restaurant, a combination of K-array KP52s and KP102s are positioned discreetly within the corners and walls of the room, supported by KMT18Ps placed below within the walls. This system, powered with KA24 and KA84 amplifiers, was refined by Sennheiser China managing director Marc Vincent to avoid conflict with the powerful audio coming from the club.
And in that club, eight KH8s are installed around the room, with eight more KS8s positioned below, in the walls. This configuration and contrast of loudspeakers did not have any impact between either room, which was made possible with the KH8 and KS8 digitally steered focus of sound, combined with an architectural design that cushioned the noise from the club.
Italian restaurant Luce della Vita, now outfitted with K-array KP52s and KP102s.
“The client was concerned that there would not be enough low frequencies and requested more subwoofers until the team turned on the KS8 before opening, and the owners were in complete shock—they could not believe the power of the subs,” states project manager Harley Tao. “In fact, just a few weeks after opening the local district asked for the bass to be turned down, and after a plea from the owners, we have recently returned to reduce the low frequencies to keep everyone happy.”
Fred Hu from Sennheiser China concludes, “This has been an incredible experience for the guests and the owners, as the sound has been punching enough to serve some serious power to the Shanghai club scene. It’s been thrilling to approach a brief like this with K-array speakers. They’re easy to set up and give us a greater edge when we want to impress our clients, especially ambitious projects such as these. The owners have been so impressed with the Firenze Series, and have requested more for another venue they’re opening in the future.”
Powersoft Deva Messaging System Makes U.S. Debut At RiverRink In Philadelphia
Combines audio, LED lighting, messaging and security features in a compact, eco-friendly unit
Each year at the end of November, thousands converge on RiverRink at Penn’s Landing in Philadelphia to celebrate the onset of winter and the holiday season, and this year it’s also the site of the very first U.S. installation of Powersoft Deva, a new multipurpose, energy independent messaging system
Built around an Olympic-sized ice skating rink, RiverRink is the centerpiece of a ‘pop up’ winter garden that features al winter landscape complete with Christmas trees, cozy fire pits and spectacular views of the Benjamin Franklin Bridge and the Delaware River.
For the thousands of skaters that attend RiverRink each day, the Deva system delivers up to 115 dB of audio while consuming a diminutive physical footprint and remaining completely energy independent. Two of the Deva units are programmed to take photos of skaters at regular intervals, enhancing the overall entertainment experience.
After the rink closes, the system — which is controlled over a wireless LAN — is able to provide intelligent surveillance and active monitoring of the premises.
Williamsport, MD-based Live Sound Co., which handled design and integration of the Deva system, was given a preview of the Deva system over a year ago by Claudio Lastrucci, research & development director at Powersoft.
“Our first installation of Deva is the culmination of our efforts with Powersoft, and their incredible engineering vision,” states Jeremiah Leiter, president of Live Sound Co. “When we turned the units on and they were working exactly as we hoped they would, it was such a feeling of pride. We don’t just want to sell products to our clients, we want to help them solve problems. This is exactly what the Powersoft’s Deva enables us to do.”
New Deva from Powersoft.(click to enlarge)
The RiverRink installation is comprised of four Deva units mounted on two steel poles on opposite sides of the skating rink. A fifth Deva unit is mounted on a pole and pointed towards the entrance of the rink. Each unit — which measures approximately 12 inches by 18 inches and weighs just under 22 pounds — comprises an active loudspeaker, an interactive messaging system, high powered LED lighting, an FM tuner, built in GPS, presence sensors, Wi-Fi and several other intelligent features.
“As far as I know, there is no other product on the market that combines such a compelling feature set,” says Live Sound Co. chief operating officer Nik Mondo. “The icing on the cake is that they can be solar powered and have a built-in battery, so they don’t require external power sources. This means that you don’t have to worry about the typical power restrictions that might be faced in other scenarios with other competing products on the marketplace.”
While the RiverRink installation was initially set up as a “proof of concept” to demonstrate Deva’s features and functionality, Mondo, who hails from the City of Brotherly Love, is confident that the council will soon find other “smart city” applications for the unit: “I would like to see Deva installed alongside the trails along the Delaware River, all the way to South Philadelphia,” he says. “Such a system could provide messaging and an added measure of assurance and security for pedestrians, especially in areas where there is not a lot of lighting or public infrastructure.”
“Security is such an important consideration for just about any metro area,” he continues. “On this product, there is a light, a camera, an FM tuner, a motion sensor and a speaker all in one. So if somebody walks in front of the unit, it can trigger a predefined message — or it can photograph surroundings at predefined intervals. All of this activity can be monitored from any location via the network.”
Deva’s product design carries through to its ease of installation: “We can install each unit in about seven minutes,” says Mondo. “The mounting and set up is very simple and exactly what you would expect from Powersoft.”
The power is supplied via solar panels, which are positioned and clamped directly to the truss above each unit. “As engineers, designers, installers and integrators, we are used to dealing with complex levels of components, software and other considerations to make things work right,” Leiter notes. “Deva is a joy for us because it is so easy to get it up and running — all the functionality you could ask for is at the ready for the end user.”
Once the system was up and running at RiverRink, the audio quality did not disappoint. “When we first fired it up and played music in the rink, all the audio engineers and staff had smiles on their faces. The audio was crisp, clear and articulate,” Mondo says. Initially, he was concerned that the four Deva units would not cover the 98-foot by 200-foot rink space, due to their modest yet sleek physical presence. “I was extremely worried that four units may not cover all that space,” he recalls “To my surprise and excitement, they audio covered the entire rink with ease and even bled out into other areas beyond the rink when we needed it to.”
Find out more about Deva here.
Ashly Gear Teams With Danley Loudspeakers At U.S. Naval Academy Prep School
Simple yet powerful system provides sound reinforcement at school's football stadium
The football stadium at Severn School in Maryland (between Baltimore and Annapolis), a prep school for the U.S. Naval Academy, now has a permanent sound reinforcement system courtesy of Baltimore-based A/V contractor HP Electronics, which utilized Ashly Audio and Danley Sound Labs equipment as the primary components.
Specifically, HP Electronics designed and installed the system with an Ashly MX-206 six-channel microphone mixer, as well as an Ashly nXp 1.52 two-channel 1,500-watt network amplifier with built-in Protea DSP processing driving three Danley Sound Labs OS-80 fully-weatherized full-range loudspeakers.
With no press box or permanent building adjacent to the field, HP Electronics sales designer Joe Schwartz supplied Severn School a portable rack bag that connects to the permanent Danley OS-80s via a simple 5-pin connector.
Inside the rack, the Ashly MX-206 analog mixer provides a simple, intuitive way to control input volume for an Audio-Technica wireless microphone and a custom input panel for connecting MP3 playback devices and the like.
A Furman CN-1800S provides power conditioning and sequencing, and is used to trigger a Furman CN20P within the main rack inside the Athletic Center, allowing the entire system to be powered up from the outdoor mix position.
The Ashly nXp 1.52 provides abundant power and processing for the system in just two rack spaces. “I’ve always been a fan of Ashly products,” says Schwartz. “The MX-206 is simple to use, sounds great, and will serve Severn School a long, long time. The nXpÊ1.52 delivers a ton of power for the cost, and the optional built-in processing is very convenient and easy to use.”
Schwartz configured the three Danley OS-80s such that two cover the left and right sides of the bleachers and one covers the field from a crow’s nest above the bleachers.
“We’ve used Danley loudspeakers and subwoofers in a number of churches and auditoriums, and they sound great,” he snotes. “When we saw that Danley had come out with a fully-weatherized loudspeaker that was based on the same design that we had used in the churches, it seemed like an excellent way to go at Severn.
“The engineers at Danley even helped with the design based on a similar field they had done. The OS-80s were relatively lightweight and easy to install,” Schwartz concludes. “I was shocked that the single OS-80 was able to cover pretty much the entire field. And that coverage, like the coverage in the bleachers, is remarkably even. Overall, the system has great fidelity and coverage, and it came in at a very competitive price point.”
Danley Sound Labs
TiMax Essential For Large-Scale Theatrics At Jaguar XE Launch In London
Natural theatre sound for a production a cast of West End performers, a 30-piece orchestra, and musical performances from Emeli Sandé, Eliza Doolittle and the Kaiser Chiefs
The new Jaguar XE was recently—and spectacularly—launched in the UK amidst a fully produced musical theatre-style show staged in a 3,000-seat proscenium theatre within London’s Earls Court.
The 90-minute performance involved 17 different Jaguars through the ages. A Morris Minor, a cast of West End performers, a 30-piece orchestra positioned upstage on a moving riser, and musical performances from the likes of Emeli Sandé, Eliza Doolittle and the Kaiser Chiefs were woven in to the narrative fabric of the show.
Freelance sound designer Sebastian Frost worked closely with Imagination’s head of sound John Del Nero to create natural theatre sound on the 53-meter by 30-meter stage, utilizing an Outboard TiMax SoundHub audio showcontrol delay-matrix, supplied by London-based production hire company, Orbital Sound, not only to contain the sound but also to ensure the audience in the raised auditorium seating could “pin sounds to the source.”
Frost explains, “Without TiMax the performance would have been flat and the intelligibility severely hampered in such a big space. There were so many different sources of sound – bands were positioned downstage, some over to the side, some upstage, as well as individual performers – and we needed to cope with those different inputs on a quickly changing basis.”
With such a complex build into Earls Court – involving over 85 tons of truss and equipment and possibly the largest load to have ever hung from the building’s roof – technical and dress rehearsal time was short. Time was at a premium and Frost did the initial set up and calculations [for TiMax] as soon as the load-in was done, and then “trained up” Chris Whybrow as his TiMax operator.
Well versed in the capabilities of TiMax, Frost set up seven zones on the stage, allowing Whybrow to work through rehearsals allocating buttons and resources in TiMax to every point of the show. “It was the first time Chris had used TiMax but he was able to just get on and built 50-60 cues very easily,” Frost notes. “He’s a very good engineer, which helped, but it was still easier than expected.”
The sound system for the show comprised four arrays of d&b audiotechnik J-series positioned as a row over the downstage, with four delay arrays of d&b V-series half way back in the audience stands. Main front of house consoles were DiGiCo SD10s, which also triggered the TiMax Soundhub Cues via MIDI.
Frost concludes, “TiMax really helped cement the believability of the performers on stage and create a theatrical environment for the entire production which in Earls Court is no mean feat.”
MOTU Ships Windows Support for AVB Audio Products
Connect MOTU interface to a USB 2.0 or 3.0 port on PC for multi-channel audio I/O with any ASIO- or Wave-compatible host software
MOTU is now shipping Windows 7- and 8-compatible USB 2.0 ASIO and Wave drivers for its new line of AVB-equipped audio interface products, including the 1248, 8M, 16A, 24Ai, 24Ao and Monitor 8.
Users can connect their MOTU interface to a USB 2.0 or 3.0 port on their PC for multi-channel audio I/O with any ASIO- or Wave-compatible host software.
“We’re excited that Windows users can now take full advantage of MOTU’s groundbreaking deployment of AVB audio interface technology in these award-winning products,” says Jim Cooper, director of marketing at MOTU.
The Windows driver installer is now available as a free download to all MOTU AVB interface owners at motu.com/avb, where a free download of MOTU’s AudioDesk 4 workstation software for Windows is also available.
Concurrent with the Windows driver release is another “one-click” field-upgradable firmware update for all MOTU AVB audio interfaces that introduces several enhancements, including optional stereo TOSLink (optical S/PDIF) support for MOTU’s 1248, 8M and 16A models.
Hungarian Palace Of Arts Chooses DiGiCo SD10 Console
Largest concert hall in Budapest and Hungary's cultural hub gets an audio upgrade
The Palace of Arts, Budapest and Hungary’s cultural hub that opened in 2005, recently added a DiGiCo SD10 mixing console to its audio inventory further its exceptional status as a performance venue.
Known to Hungarians simply as Müpa, the venue brings together the many and varied disciplines of the arts in a unique fashion by providing a home for classical, contemporary, popular and world music, as well as jazz, opera, contemporary circus, dance, literature and film.
It has five performance rooms and a further five event places, with the largest space, Béla Bartók National Concert Hall, getting the new DiGiCo SD10.
“The Palace of Arts’ sound engineers gained a lot of experience on DiGiCo consoles, particularly the SD8, during this summer’s festival season,” says Imre Makkay of Chromasound, DiGiCo’s Hungarian distributor that supplied the Palace’s SD10. “They found it very easy to handle, transparent sounding and they always had great backup from the local tech support team.
“In fact, their experience with DiGiCo consoles was always very good,” he continues. “They found the number of input and output channels really impressive and at the moment the DiGiCo SD10 is one of the most rider-compatible consoles in the industry.
“In the Palace of Arts, the technology they use is specified to an extremely high level and to drive the Meyer Sound front PA, they needed to have an absolutely top quality console,” Makkay concludes. “It is unquestionable that the DiGiCo SD10 is just that.”
L-Acoustics K1 And K2 Heats Up Arcade Fire On The Road
Solotech takes K1/K2 rig on 2014 North American tour legs
Solotech of Montreal provided L-Acoustics K1 and K2 for the recent North America tour by Grammy Award-winning indie band Arcade Fire in support of its fourth and most recent album, Reflektor.
The group continues to press the envelope with its sonically adventurous arrangements and tours, which can feature a dozen or more multi-instrumentalists switching between an ever-changing blend of guitar, drums, bass, piano, string quartet, xylophone, glockenspiel, keyboard, synthesizer, French horn, accordion, harp, mandolin and hurdy-gurdy.
In particular, this trek represented Solotech’s first official outing with the manufacturer’s new K2 enclosures, which were typically flown 14 per side as out fill arrays, but also occasionally tapped for main PA in sheds and smaller outdoor venues.
“I was very impressed with the K2, both in its seamless integration into a K1 rig as side-hangs, but equally in its performance as a standalone PA in smaller venues, where I felt its wider dispersion was well suited to venues where a shorter throw was necessary,” notes front of house engineer Jim Warren, who has also mixed Radiohead, Peter Gabriel and Nine Inch Nails over the years.
“K2 is a terrific cabinet and an amazing product overall,” adds Marc-Olivier Germain, Solotech’s audio system technician for the tour. “Its light weight is one of its best features; you can hang it pretty much anywhere! Rigging is great, and if you already know K1, it’s a piece of cake to work with K2. But that being said, I was also tremendously impressed by the amount of power that comes out of this box for its size.”
Aside from K2 out fills, Solotech deployed left and right main arrays of 14 K1 enclosures, each with six KARA for down fill. Eight K1-SB low-frequency extension cabinets were flown on the outside of each main array, with a total of 16 SB28 subs groundstacked below for low-end punch.
Additional loudspeakers deployed included: six KARA front-fills positioned across the deck; 16 ARCS flown as a full 360-degree “donut” over the B stage for pre- and post-show DJ performances; 12 KUDO delays (first leg only); 52 LA8 amplified controllers; and three self-powered 108P plus one SB15P at FOH for nearfield monitoring and shout.
Tuesday, December 16, 2014
Two Dubai Sound Companies Expand With Adamson
New Adamson line arrays acquired by both Stagecraft Events and SAS Event Production
Distributor Thomsun Trading continues to expand the reach of Adamson Systems within the United Arab Emirates region, with the company recently delivering new line array systems to Stagecraft Events and SAS Event Production, both prominent sound companies located in Dubai.
“Each companies invested in full, turnkey, SpekTrix line array systems,” says Alok Ghurde, application support manager, Thomsun Trading. “The SpekTrix performance package consists of 16 SpekTrix line array enclosures. Eight SpekTrix subwoofers powered by four Lab.gruppen PLM 10000K amplifiers. They both purchased Cisco network switches for Dante audio distribution as well.”
Adamson’s SpekTrix line array is a 3-way loudspeaker loaded with two dedicated 8-inch Kevlar Neodymium drivers and one 1.4-inch-exit high frequency compression driver mounted on a proprietary wave shaping sound chamber.
“SpekTrix is a true line source system and is considered one of the finest compact line arrays on the market,” says Stagecraft Events CEO Aveline Pinto. “I had heard and was always impressed by the clarity and tonality of the Y-Axis Series Y-10s and wanted something similar. When I heard the SpekTrix system I knew it was the way to go.”
In addition to the SpekTrix performance package, Stagecraft Events also purchased six M12 and M15 stage monitors to round out their rig.
The SAS Event Production team was equally impressed with the quality of the SpekTrix system. “We got better headroom than any other system we have used before,” states Bjan, CEO of SAS Event Production. “When we first heard the system we were amazed. The quality, especially in the mid-range was impressive. In the future we hope to upgrade even further with the more powerful Adamson Energia PA.”
Adamson’s David Dohrmann, technical director Asia Pacific, provided hands-on training to both organizations and other companies in the region. The 2-day educational seminar covered line array principles, Shooter and Blueprint software training, Lab.gruppen Lake Controller instruction and system alignment measurement with Rational Acoustics Smaart V7.
“Stagecraft graciously offered their premises for the event,” adds Ghurde. “All attendees were technical staff from local rental companies as well as the Stagecraft and SAS teams. The training will allow them to use their Adamson gear effectively and fine tune system performance on gigs in the current events season. It is just another example of the excellent support Adamson provides their customers.”
Biamp Systems Releases Tesira 2.3; Includes AVB Support
Also offers enhanced reporting capabilities, Audio-Technica microphone software, and telephony support
Biamp Systems has unveiled the Tesira 2.3, the latest addition to its DSP platform that offers several advances, including IEEE 1722.1 AVB support.
Tesira 2.3 also includes greater reporting capabilities for expanders, a new dedicated software block for Audio-Technica’s Dante microphones, and increased telephony support.
“Tesira 2.3 demonstrates our commitment to providing customers with audio and networking solutions that are at the forefront of innovation,” says Justin O’Connor, audio and conferencing product manager at Biamp Systems. “Meeting interoperability requirements and adding enhanced reporting tools, plus support for Audio-Technica’s Dante microphones, increases the clear value proposition for our customers: greater reliability and more intuitive tools that unleash the potential of today’s networked media systems.”
Tesira 2.3 implements IEEE 1722.1 support for AVB, enabling standards-based interoperability with other devices supporting IEEE 1722.1. Accordingly, it will undergo testing at University of New Hampshire’s interoperability lab for independent third-party testing and AVnu certification.
Tesira’s increased reporting capabilities include status and fault reporting for the series’ expander devices, making it simpler for large setups to rapidly identify and troubleshoot systems. If an expander is not operating as expected, that device can be easily identified along with the status or condition of the expander.
For systems incorporating Audio-Technica microphones, Tesira 2.3 provides explicit input blocks in Tesira software for the ATND971 and ATND8677 Dante units. With a DAN-1 card, Tesira not only receives networked Dante audio from the A-T microphones, but through the new blocks, system designers can design the exact button and LED controls desired.
Tesira configures the microphone with the settings and also triggers button and LED events, as well as controlling filters and related parameters. The new block can also accommodate up to 32 microphones with identical settings — facilitating fast and easy design.
“The latest version of Tesira software integrates Audio-Technica’s Dante-enabled ATND971 boundary microphone and ATND8677 microphone desk stand, allowing customers to maximize the full potential of these products,” adds Chris Nighman, product manager, wired products at Audio-Technica. “The included controls provide intuitive assignment of the user switch and green/red LED, providing ultimate system design flexibility. Tesira software gives customers the ability to assign up to 32 A-T devices with common parameters to a single block for more efficient installation and setup.”
For customers in Switzerland and India, Tesira 2.3 also enhances telephony support, enabling Biamp telephony cards and devices to ensure all call progress tone support. Further call progress tone support and improvement is provided for additional countries in the Tesira 2.3 release.
PlayhouseSquare Implements New NEXO M6 For Cleveland’s Hanna Theatre
Compact footprint and high output help overcome problem of locating sufficient rigging points
The Hanna Theatre in Cleveland recently upgraded its sound system, an effort lead by the deployment of NEXO GEO M620 line arrays installed by NAC Technologies, also of Cleveland.
Opened in 1921, the venue hosted such stage and film luminaries as Al Jolson, Katherine Hepburn, Henry Fonda, Ethel Barrymore, Ginger Rogers, Helen Hayes, Mary Martin and Yul Brynner. PlayhouseSquare assumed management of the Hanna in August, 1999 following its purchase of the Hanna Office Building, which houses the venue.
In 2008, the Hanna underwent a renovation to add a thrust stage, re-working its seating count to 550 and becoming the main performance base for PlayhouseSquare’s long-time constituent, Great Lakes Theater.
“The system that was previously installed during the earlier remodel was a ‘design by committee’—a nice system, but it left a lot of dead spots,” states Rick Galbraith, NAC Technologies. “Size and cost always weigh in, and the client was very concerned about the size of the array and also on a very tight budget.”
No stranger to NEXO GEO, which has been installed (by NAC) in three other PlayhouseSquare theatres, Galbraith explains they started by placing loudspeakers in the NS1 prediction software, virtually arranging the array size, coverage, and SPL based on available rigging points.
“Available rigging points was our biggest challenge,” he notes, “so after using the prediction software, we determined that three clusters of three M6 speakers would be ideal for the theatre. Considering the size of the clusters, the NEXO GEO M6 system sounds amazing, with zero complaints from the theatre or patrons.”
The GEO M620 is a full-range unit for stand-alone, curved array or line array application. Compact in size and lightweight, the GEO M620 uses a NEXO-designed long-excursion high-efficiency 6.5-inch LF driver and 1 x 1-inch-throat driver on a BEA/FEA optimized HR wavesource. HF dispersion is 80 degrees (120 degrees horizontal), with 20-degree vertical coverage, 0- to 20-degree splay when arrayed.
Robert Mingus, director of production for PlayhouseSquare, was instrumental in the decision to install the NEXO M6. “Dave Cooper and Rick Galbraith of NAC have done an amazing job upgrading all of our sound systems here at PlayhouseSquare. We are very pleased and take great pride in the sound quality of our theatres, and I believe this is possible because of the great relationship we have with NAC and their craftsmanship.”
Mingus adds the NEXO M6 solved many challenges, in addition to offering excellent sonic quality. “The M6 system sounds fantastic. Our three-box center cluster, which weighs only 76 pounds, virtually disappears, and is not in the way of lighting. With special brackets from NEXO, we were able to mount the 3-box arrays for L + R onto the proscenium for a very clean look. NAC then tuned the system to perfection, avoiding the many problems of getting the sound into the house and off of the thrust stage.”
Grundorf Corporation Celebrating 30th Anniversary
Principals Susan and Frank Grund started the business in their garage in 1984
Grundorf Corporation, manufacturer of equipment cases and related accessories for audio professionals and musicians, and parent company of Grund Audio Design, is celebrating its 30th anniversary. Company principals Susan (vice president) and Frank Grund (president) started the business in their garage in July of 1984 after deciding to cease touring with their band.
“We started out building speaker cabinets and cases for our musician friends who saw the products we had built for use in our own band,” recalls Frank Grund. “A local music store saw our products and said if we put a name on them he would sell them in his store—and that was our start.
“Initially, the products were sold by word of mouth and, within a few years, we had expanded to nationwide distribution. By 1990, we had clearly outgrown our garage, so we purchased the building that, to this day, houses our current manufacturing operation.”
Being known among his musician friends as the ‘audio guy,’ Frank Grund always had a passion for loudspeaker design, and early on, had built the band’s PA cabinets. This early experience served as the foundation for Grund Audio Design’s loudspeaker offerings, which today encompasses the Gala, GT, GQ, Altar Clarity, ACX, UB (Under Balcony), VIP, GP,ST, and XT series product lines.
“Our loudspeaker systems have evolved from ‘me too’ carpet covered PA cabinets to unique models researched and developed by Frank for specific applications,” says Susan Grund. “Today, we offer two durable paint finishes for our wood loudspeaker enclosures—a durable spatter paint finish and our tough Tour Coat™ finish. In addition to enclosures manufactured with wood, we also offer injection molded loudspeaker designs.”
As an equipment case manufacturer, Grundorf cases got its start by replicating the case Susan and Frank made for Susan’s keyboard.
“Our earliest rendition was a case for my keyboard,” recalls Susan. “It was initially made with blue indoor/outdoor carpet. When we started to build cases professionally, we switched to the black and gray carpet, which is still available today. Since those early days, we’ve expanded our case offerings to include the touring ABS finished flight style cases as well as our lightweight ABS molded plastic cases.”
“We are very focused on developing the right tool for the job,” adds Frank. “We offer lightweight, highly portable injection molded enclosures specifically designed for portable PA use, be it a church, school, or wedding band. On the opposite end of the spectrum, we offer line array technology for both touring and fixed installation, dedicated monitor systems, and a variety of point source loudspeaker designs at a variety of price points that are well suited to a wide range of applications.”
Frank provides his thoughts on the company’s accomplishments, “Today’s customers are looking for more than just an off-the-shelf product. They are looking for products that provide specific solutions to the challenges they encounter in their day-to-day working lives. Grundorf cases fill that need with our in-house custom designed products that are proudly made in the USA.
“We custom build cases that, as an example, make it easy for technology managers in hotels and convention centers to easily transport the microphones, mixer, amplification, and related accessories from one meeting or presentation space to another. Similarly, we have cases that make it easy to safely transport guitars, keyboards, lighting equipment, and just about anything else a musician or audio professional is likely to use in his work.”
Riedel Appoints Robert Pennington As U.S. Sales Manager, Broadcast, East Coast
Assisting customers in selecting and implementing the company's product portfolio of networked communications and signal transport solutions
Riedel Communications has named Robert Pennington to serve as its U.S. sales manager, broadcast, for the East Coast, where he is assisting customers in selecting and implementing the company’s product portfolio of networked communications and signal transport solutions.
“With unusually rich experience across broadcast production, networked communications, systems integration, and the broadcast and pro AV technology supply business, Bob is equipped to approach each customer and application with valuable insight,” states Christopher Street, general manager, North and Central America, at Riedel Communications. “For more than 25 years, he has been immersed in the East Coast media industry, and his exceptional knowledge and experience in this area will be immensely valuable as we continue to introduce innovative new communications and signal-transport solutions to North American customers.”
Pennington began his professional career as a broadcast television news producer at WCIV-TV in Charleston, SC and at WTOV-TV in Steubenville, OH. While with WCIV-TV he also served as camera operator, video editor, and microwave and satellite remote live truck operator. Pennington later served as program director for MDTV at West Virginia University, where he helped to design and supervise a multisite telemedicine program and worked to help standardize the university’s classroom technologies.
Subsequent roles with systems integration firms and resellers included that of branch manager and account executive at Seneca Communications and account executive at Video Central South. He later served as sales manager and product specialist at Anton/Bauer, commercial products manager for Sima Products, and in business development and sales roles at Texolve Digital.
Pennington is based in Connecticut and reports directly to Street.
Renkus-Heinz IC2 Steers Grove City Church In Right Direction
Left-center-right, dead-hung configuration, with three IC2-FR modules in the center flanked by five more on either side.
Grove City Church of the Nazarene has built a large and diverse congregation in this Columbus, OH suburb, offering a mix of both contemporary and classic worship services, as well as hosting many conferences and concerts from touring Christian artists.
The church’s 2,800-seat sanctuary has long struggled with sonic issues, including poor intelligibility and uneven coverage, and the church was more than ready to upgrade their sound system. Technical director Matt Groves and front of house sound engineer Doug McLaughlin undertook the job of researching possible solutions.
“We looked at several major loudspeaker brands and invited several in to do demos for us,” Groves says. “They all sounded fine, but the Renkus-Heinz IC2 really stood out. They demonstrated the beam steering by putting us up in the balcony with the IC2 cabinet on stage. We could hear it just fine. Then he opens his laptop and says, ‘Watch this,’ and steers the speaker digitally so it’s hitting us directly upstairs. All of a sudden, boom, there it was, with unbelievable clarity. I looked at my front of house engineer and we both said, ‘That’s the one.’ It was the coolest thing.”
The system, installed by Tech Art Productions of Grandview Heights, OH, comprises a left-center-right, dead-hung configuration, with three IC2-FR modules in the center flanked by five more on either side. Each full-range IC2-FR module contains four 8-inch speakers and four vertically aligned one-inch high frequency drivers. To deliver the bass needed for the church’s powerful contemporary presentation, the arrays are supplemented by six DR18-2R powered subwoofers, hung in two groups of three between the main IC2 arrays.
Like most contemporary houses of worship, this installation requires both musicality and intelligibility, and the IC2 system delivers. “The music sounds amazing, and the spoken word is crystal clear in every seat, even under the balcony,” says Groves. “The IC2’s digital steering enabled us to aim a beam down to hit the front rows and another to cover beneath the balcony. And we have totally eliminated the slap-back echo from sound bouncing off the balcony facing.”
He also appreciates the economy of cabinets required to covers the church’s wide, cavernous sanctuary. “Having 120-degree dispersion lets us cover the full width of the room, even the side wings, with just the three LCR arrays,” he reports. “To do this room with standard line arrays would take two groups 9 or 10 boxes in a curved hang, plus extra speakers to cover the dead spots. Our biggest arrays are only five cabinets tall, and we have clean sightlines from every seat. There are no front fills, no side fills, and no speakers under the balcony.”
The early Sunday service is the classic presentation, with an 80-voice choir, 20-piece orchestra, plus a rhythm section. Thirty minutes after that service ends, the room is reset for the contemporary service, with the choir loft walled off and the stage reconfigured. There is also a hybrid service on Saturday. The system’s advanced RHAON control software can instantly recall multiple configurations for each service’s different demands.
“The contemporary service is a pretty high octane and edgier presentation that includes a rhythm section, six vocalists, a whole lot of bass, and is very guitar driven,” explains Groves. “The traditional service needs less bass reinforcement, which we have set up in the RHAON software as a preset. Both sound fantastic from every seat in the house.”
Tech Art Productions