Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Sound Image Deploys JBL VTX Line Arrays & Crown Amplifiers For Rascal Flatts Rewind Tour

Large-scale rig is set up and tuned using JBL HiQnet Performance Manager software

In support of the new album Rewind, Rascal Flatts as well as supporting artists Sheryl Crow and Gloriana have embarked on a new concert tour, with audio provider Sound Image (Escondido, CA and Nashville) supplying a large-scale main system headed by Harman’s JBL Professional flagship VTX Series line arrays and Crown Audio I-Tech HD power amplifiers.

Specifically, the system incorporates 60 JBL VTX V25 line array loudspeakers and 32 S28 subwoofers, complemented by six JBL VerTec VT4889 line array loudspeakers and two VerTec VT4880 arrayable subwoofers for side fills. The loudspeakers are driven by 72 of Crown’s flagship I-Tech 12000HD amplifiers.

In a typical configuration, 30 VTX V25 loudspeakers and 16 S28 subs are flown on either side of the stage with three VT4889 loudspeakers flown on either side and aimed towards the stage as monitors, and two VT4880 subs are placed on the ground of the stage floor, aimed towards the performers.

“Everybody likes the new rigging system used on the VTX arrays,” says Jeremy Overall, Sound Image systems tech. “Everything goes together pretty easily, which is a huge advantage when you have to set up literally 100 loudspeakers night after night.”

The VTX proprietary S.A.F.E. suspension system is streamlined for speed and efficiency with improved, integrated hardware for faster setup and greater security. Overall and his crew are also using the new JBL VTX vertical transporters, rolling frames that facilitate the transport of VTX line arrays for tour sound applications. “It actually makes moving all these arrays pretty easy,” he notes.

Sound Image was one of the first tour sound providers to add the JBL VTX Series to its inventory. “We got the second VTX rig and have been carrying it for about a year and a half,” Overall says. “It’s a significant improvement from anything else we’ve used with a lot more bottom end and good punch. The new D2 dual compression driver and waveguide really smooth out the high end – there’s no harshness to be heard.”

The Rascal Flatts rig is set up and tuned using JBL HiQnet Performance Manager software. “It’s so user-friendly – everything we need is right there,” Overall says. “For examplem when we need to associate speakers to their amplifiers everything is built-in on a single tab. When we need to configure delay and processing, we just tell the program what speakers we’re setting up and all the control panels come right up.”

Overall is also a big fan of the I-Tech HD Series amps, noting that Sound Image has had dozens of the amps working reliably on the road for two years. “I’m not the first person to say this but the amps work really well with the VTX arrays,” due to built-in presets that enable the VTX models to be optimized for frequency response, crossover points and slopes and other sonic attributes.

JBL Professional
Crown Audio
Harman Professional
Sound Image

Posted by Keith Clark on 08/26 at 06:38 AM
AVLive SoundNewsAmplifierAVConcertLine ArrayLoudspeakerMeasurementPowerSoftwareSound ReinforcementPermalink

Monday, August 25, 2014

Earthworks Appoints Audio Brands As Contractor Distributor In Australia & New Zealand

Earthworks appoints Audio Brands Australia to represent installed sound product line.

Earthworks is pleased to announce its appointment of Audio Brands as the distributor for its Installed Sound Microphone line in Australia and New Zealand.

The installation range includes choir mics, gooseneck mics, as well as mics designed to be mounted into conference tables or ceilings. The latest additions to the Installed Sound line include gooseneck and boundary microphones, which are available with the LumiComm Touch Ring―a dual-color LED with touch sensor output seamlessly integrated into the microphone, which is operated by a media control system.

Don McConnell, director of Audio Brands Australia, commented: “Earthworks enjoys a reputation as being a leader in microphone technology and we’re very pleased to introduce their new installation line.”

Jeff Shoesmith, sales engineer from Audio Brands Australia added:  “Many installation mics offer decent on-axis frequency response, but behave quite differently as little as half way into their published pickup angle, particularly in the higher octave bands. Earthworks microphones are true to their specification and offer a much wider usable pickup angle without spotlighting.

“This uniform polar behavior also provides much greater gain before feedback. If you’re a designer who appreciates the importance of quality sound, we encourage you to compare Earthworks installed sound microphones with your current favorites, you will experience performance you never thought possible in an installed mic form factor.”

Heidi Blackmer Robichaud, president and CEO of Earthworks added: “We are thrilled about the appointment of Audio Brands Australia. Their experience within the installation market will make them excellent partners in promoting Earthworks’ technically advanced and problem solving Installed Sound Products.”

The Earthworks installed sound line redefines the benchmark for installation microphones. All are made in the USA and come with a 15 year warranty.

Audio Brands Australia joins Audio Chocolate, Earthwork’s our long standing pro audio products distributor in Australia.

Audio Brands Australia will be exhibiting at Integrate in Sydney, Australia August 26-28 at stand C97.

Audio Brands

Posted by Julie Clark on 08/25 at 12:26 PM

Symetrix Announces PRO AVLS As Sales Representative For Latin America

Pro AVLS has been appointment sales representative for Symetrix for Latin America and the Caribbean.

Symetrix announced today that it has appointed Pro AVLS to serve as sales representative for Latin America and the Caribbean.

Based in San Juan, Puerto Rico, and with an office in Margarita Island, Venezuela, PRO AVLS will use its expertise spanning more than 20 years to spearhead sales for products including Jupiter, the line of fixed-architecture standalone DSPs, and SymNet, the range of open-architecture Dante scalable DSPs.

“As Symetrix continues to grow globally, one of the next steps in this expansion was the addition of a dedicated sales and technical resource for Latin America”, says Mark Ullrich, international sales manager at Symetrix. “PRO AVLS was the natural choice for us in the region.

“Alex Rojas, president, has served as a Symetrix dealer with Caribbean Broadcast Suppliers, thus he and his team are already familiar with our product line. Both Alex and his colleague Guillermo Sánchez, based in Venezuela, also had tenure at Harman, so they are well versed in the sale and support of DSP solutions.”

For PRO AVLS, already an established representative working with brands including DiGiCo and Martin Audio, this agreement allows customers access to a very unique product range across Latin America.

“There’s a strong need for versatile DSP platforms in the region”, comments Guillermo Sánchez, sales director at PRO AVLS. “Although there are many players in the market, we wanted to partner with a manufacturer which would give our customers an edge against competitors in terms of usability, compatibility, audio quality, reliability, and price.”

“Low-cost, turnkey products like Jupiter, an app-based DSP, are perfect for everyday installations, while the increased flexibility afforded by the SymNet line, including Edge and Radius AEC, can offer a scalable Dante-enabled solution for larger, more complex projects. Symetrix can stand proud as it provides a product to solve every possible challenge and fit within every possible application,” enthuses Sánchez.

PRO AVLS president, Alex Rojas, also shares excitement about the new partnership. “As we work together to bring market-leading DSP solutions to our customers, prospects and friends, they will see the benefits of Symetrix products and the benefit PRO AVLS brings to their toolset. We are very proud of representing a brand with such great heritage and respect in the audio industry,” he confirms.

With this new appointment, Symetrix expects more focus on and support of its existing distribution arrangements in the region. “We’re also looking forward to incrementally adding new strategic partnerships to ensure Symetrix has the most competitive positioning possible in Latin America”, says Ullrich. “Latin America is a vast and dynamic territory, so taking this next step with a dedicated sales and support resource will help Symetrix fulfil the opportunities that exist”, he concludes.


Posted by Julie Clark on 08/25 at 12:11 PM

Renkus-Heinz System For New Korean Venue

Audio company Daikyung Vascom provided the sound system for the Ansan Evergreen Gymnasium, which features a Renkus-Heinz PN102 line array system.

In late fall of 2014, South Korea will host the XVII Asian Games in and around Incheon, located near to the country’s capital, Seoul.

The newly-built Ansan Evergreen Gymnasium, while not one of the Asian Games’ official venues, will host volleyball and kabaddi up to the quarter final stages. Designed as a multipurpose space, the gymnasium will be home to the Ansan volleyball team and other sporting events, and will also host music and cultural events.

Audio company Daikyung Vascom provided the sound system, which features a Renkus-Heinz PN102 line array system.

“This building is owned by the government, which isn’t very common for a venue like this,” explains Yang-Su Yun, manager of Daighung Vascom’s RPS business division. “The local council based at Ansan City Hall wanted the building to function as both a sporting venue and a concert hall, and hence they needed a very good, high-performance speaker system.

“Other strict criteria were sound quality and functionality, both of which were extremely important factors in choosing the Renkus-Heinz system.’”

Yang-Su notes that Daikyung Vascom had previously installed a system at the Ansan City Hall, and has a good working relationship with the council. “They are familiar with our work, and they really appreciate the after sales service we provide.”

The main system in the hall comprises 32 PN102LAR array loudspeakers, configured as four arrays of eight cabinets each, 90 degrees apart. The arrays are positioned on each corner of a centrally-flown block which houses four large screens, so that spectators on all four sides of the hall have a close up view of the action.

Additional fills are provided by four PN121-series two-way cabinets, as well as five ST4 three-way systems and a pair of CFX151 boxes. Four DR18-2 and two PN112SUB subwoofers provide low frequency reinforcement.

“The PN102 line arrays were selected for their accurate and even coverage pattern, providing consistent coverage to every seat in the hall,” says Daikyung Vascom’s CEO Patrick Han. “RHAON (Renkus-Heinz Audio Operations Network) control was another important factor in selecting the system, enabling networked DSP control over the entire system.”

Flexibility was the keyword when it came to designing the space, which will be hosting a wide variety of events. Permanent seats are available in the upper part of the hall, while bleacher-style seating along the hall’s two longer walls is retractable and can be folded back to the walls to accommodate more people.

A stage can be constructed at the far end of the hall for large concerts. When being used in this configuration, temporary seating can be set up on the floor of the gymnasium, and a total of around 3,000 people can be accommodated.

The system design was carried out by Daikyung Vascom’s sales team, together with local systems integration specialist Sinwoo. Working closely with Daikyung Vascom, Sinwoo’s Byung-Sun Ahn designed a system that would be optimal for the space. The team used EASE acoustic prediction software to map the room and define its sound qualities.

“This was the first time I’ve worked with Renkus-Heinz,” says Mr Ahn. “I checked the specifications and references of the Renkus-Heinz speakers, and when I simulated them to fit the space I got very good results. The actual performance of the speakers was very close to what we’d predicted with EASE. I’m very satisfied with the system. I also really appreciated being able to use RHAON to tune the system, especially the mid frequencies.”

As for Ansan Urban Corporation’s Mr Kim, he is of the opinion that the speakers offer the best possible functionality for concert sound, providing high SPLs when required. “Once we are able to put on concerts here, the system will prove itself as really good for this kind of event, while also being able to provide intelligibility and clarity when the hall is being used for our sporting events,” he says.

Ansan Evergreen Gymnasium now boasts a state of the art sound system to complement its clean architectural design and functionality. The signs are positive that the new sporting venue will contribute to a successful and uplifting Asian Games later this year, providing a panacea that South Korea needs.


Posted by Julie Clark on 08/25 at 11:00 AM
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Extron Introduces All-New Cable Cubby 202

Extron announces availability of Cable Cubby 202.

Extron Electronics is pleased to announce the immediate availability of the all-new Cable Cubby 202, the latest addition to the company’s benchmark Cable Cubby Series/2 line of cable access enclosures for AV connectivity and AC power.

The compact Cable Cubby 202 is equipped with one fixed, unswitched AC outlet and is available in versions for the US, Europe, and other world markets. The removable Cable Pass-Through Bracket accommodates up to four AV cables, allowing cables to be installed or serviced from the top of the enclosure, after it’s installed in the furniture surface. The Cable Cubby 202 also features a hidden, integrated clamp system that quickly secures the enclosure with common hand tools.

“The Cable Cubby 202 builds on the heritage of the Cable Cubby 200, a mainstay in classrooms, conference rooms, and training facilities, for more than a decade now,” says Casey Hall, Vice President of Sales and Marketing for Extron. “It combines our new Cable Cubby Series/2 design aesthetic, ease of installation, and integrator-friendly features, in a durable, compact cable access enclosure that’s priced right for virtually any application where convenient access to AC power and AV connectivity is needed.”

The Cable Cubby 202 is available with AC outlets for the US, Europe, and other world markets. The US model also includes an opening for one MAAP - Mini Architectural Adapter Plate, such as a momentary switch or USB pass-through connector. The enclosure’s tilt-up lid is held open by a small magnetic catch, facilitating the use of the Cable Cubby 202 in both horizontal and vertical mounting orientations. When closed, the lid provides a single, full width cable pass-through.

The Cable Cubby 202 is available in a durable black powder coat finish. Optional bracket kits are available to support up to three Extron Retractor cable retraction modules or two single-space AAPs – Architectural Adapter Plates for alternate connectivity needs.

Extron Electronics

Posted by Julie Clark on 08/25 at 06:06 AM

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Biamp Systems Adds To Growing U.S. Sales Team

Robert Taylor to serve as regional manager of Southeastern U.S. for Biamp Systems.

Biamp Systems today announced the appointment of Robert Taylor as regional manager, Southeast Region of North America.

In his new role, Taylor will be responsible for strategic sales and support encompassing the entire Biamp® product line for customers in the Southeastern United States.

“Robert’s background includes not only a strong foundation managing a diversified product portfolio across multiple market segments, but also a remarkable depth of experience in audio design and installation,” said Read Wineland, Regional Director, Eastern North America at Biamp Systems. “He has an intimate understanding of how to capitalize on new business opportunities in this market while maintaining and expanding relationships with existing customers. We have no doubt he will be a valuable addition to the team.”

Taylor comes to Biamp with over 15 years’ experience in pro AV design, sales, and installation services, most recently as a Sales Representative for Secom, an independent manufacturers’ representative firm serving the professional and commercial audio industries. Prior to that, he served as National Sales Manager at TOA Electronics.

“It’s an honor to join the Biamp team — the leading manufacturer of Audio DSP products in the industry. I’m very excited to move forward and continue building our presence in the Southeastern U.S.,” said Taylor. “Being based in Tennessee, I have the opportunity to continue working with valued industry friends and colleagues as well as develop new business relationships in the territory.”

Biamp Systems

Posted by Julie Clark on 08/21 at 08:49 AM

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Dancefloor Installs Community Professional Loudspeakers In Znojmo’s Sports Venues

Czech Republic distributor/integrator installs Community Professional loudspeakers in two venues in the town of Znojmo.

Dancefloor, s.r.o., a Czech Republic distributor and integrator, recently completed the installation of Community Professional loudspeakers based audio systems in two venues for the town of Znojmo, located in the South Moravian Region of the Czech Republic.

The first venue was the Winter Stadium, home of the Orli Znojmo hockey club.  The 6,000+ seat Winter Stadium is a multi-purpose facility that had long suffered with poor sound levels and intelligibility, lacking the ability to inform and involve visitors and produce an exciting atmosphere for events.

Libor Klemenc, Dancefloor’s managing director, explained the choice of loudspeakers, “For high intelligibility and overall sound quality we chose Community R.5 12-inch, two-way loudspeakers. We used sixteen R.5s in 60 x 60 degree and 90 x 40 degree versions. The R.5 is both compact and discreet. Engineered for all-weather applications, it is also ideal for the environmental conditions of an ice venue.”

Klemenc continued, “With an MC2 Audio Ti1048 integrated audio management system providing delay and equalization, and the dynamics maintained by four MC2 T1500 amplifiers, we achieved excellent speech intelligibility, a primary requirement of the venue.”

Via a simple menu, the system operator can choose from pre-set modes designed for the specific event: hockey match, public skating, training, social event, etc. The system can be controlled from two separate locations. Prime events and hockey games are operated from the main control booth using a Dateq Onyx mixer, while public skating, skating courses and social events are operated from the rink side penalty timekeeper box using a Cortex MIX-R1U mixer.

A Shure SLX24E/SM58-P handheld wireless system enables live commentary from any location in the stadium.

With the substantial improvement in audio quality at the Winter Stadium, the Znojmo authorities commissioned Dancefloor to provide an equally high performance system for the town’s nearby Sports Hall, a complex used for indoor sports including basketball, floorball, futsal, handball and rhythmic gymnastics clubs.

“We used the same basic formula for the Sports Hall, but customized it to precisely meet the use, layout and acoustics of the venue,” said Klemenc. For optimum coverage, Dancefloor used a combination of Community R.5 and R.25 loudspeakers, both with 90 x 40 degree format. A Community dSPEC226 Networked Loudspeaker Processor provides delay and equalization and MC2 Audio T1500 and T1000 amplifiers power the Community loudspeakers.

“The combination again provided the high intelligibility and dynamic audio quality the venue required. As with the Winter Stadium, Dancefloor provided pre-sets on the dSPEC226 to enable the operator to select the mode for the event. The Sports Hall audio system is also controlled via a Dateq Onyx mixer from the timekeeper’s location, with a Shure SLX24E/SM58-P handheld wireless system enabling live commentary from any location.

Dancefloor employed acoustic CAD modelling for both venues to verify the designs before tender and both installations were completed to the highest standards. Entertainment requirements in both venues are met with Gemini CDMP-1400 CD/MP3/USB players.

“The new systems have transformed both venues,” said Klemenc. “The audio is loud and clear throughout, so that operators and commentators can focus on content and spectators can enjoy much greater involvement.“

Community Professional

Posted by Julie Clark on 08/20 at 08:56 AM
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Monday, August 18, 2014

EAI Brings Martin Audio MLA To Singapore

Purchase continues a legacy that began with the older Martin Audio Wavefront W3/WS2 range

Singapore-based EXPO AV-INSYNC PTE (EAI) recently (and significantly) boosted an inventory that also includes Martin Audio W8LM mini line arrays by purchasing the country’s first MLA System 36 from local distributors Swee Lee.

EAI managing director Gerard Rodrigues explains, “We wanted a larger format, steerable array system to add on to our inventory, and it needed to represent a significant upgrade. The other main reason is that the next four upcoming gigs are all rider specific.”

Rodrigues adds that the latest purchase continues a legacy that began with the older Martin Audio Wavefront W3/WS2 range. “We wanted to be the first company to own MLA, but in any case, after a year’s worth of research for a new line array, this system came out top in terms of sound quality, output, ease of use and what engineers wanted most.

“We deliberated this to ensure we had concert and corporate clients who would love it and specify it for their events,” he continues. “And although we had not heard it live at the time, I can’t remember the last time Martin Audio built a bad box, whether loudspeakers or line arrays.”

EAI had first heard about the MLA system back in late 2012, with Rodrigues and technical director Desmond Zuzarte noting MLA’s ease of use, the output it delivers, and the steerability and tailored control for each different venue.

After intensive training in late July, hosted by venue partners Singapore Expo & Max Atria and conducted by Chris Pyne (Martin Audio APAC technical & training support), the system will debut later this summer at the Singapore Expo Hall 1 in front of 6,000 people for a talent show.

“Our sound engineers are just very excited about this acquisition,” Rodrigues concludes. “From a sales point of view, the MLA speaks for itself. Aside from its output, the other big advantage is its weight — here in Singapore, we needed a system that could deliver huge sound output, while maintaining a certain weight load restriction in many venues. And looking at how the system is selling in Japan alone, it is a choice of all concert organizers and technical directors for large scale events.”

Martin Audio

Posted by Keith Clark on 08/18 at 03:17 PM
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Lawmakers in North Dakota Get Complete Coverage With Renkus-Heinz

Renkus-Heinz ICONYX digitall sterrable arrays resolve intelligibility issues in state capital chambers.

Located in the capital city of Bismarck, North Dakota’s Legislative Assembly building is home to the state’s Senate and House of Representative chambers.

Both the semi-circular Senate and House chamber rooms feature high ceilings and walls of American chestnut, walnut, and oak throughout. A balcony area hangs over the main seating floor in each chamber. For years the rooms have been plagued with poor vocal intelligibility, a problem that was recently resolved with the installation of Renkus-Heinz ICONYX digitally steerable line array loudspeakers.

Known as the “Skyscraper on the Prairie,” the 19-story tower was constructed during the Great Depression, and to this day stands as the tallest building in North Dakota.

While visually impressive, the wood paneling and high ceilings in both chamber rooms were a source of coverage and reverberation issues. Additionally, the low ceiling in the under-balcony areas blocked sound from the main system, and the few small supplemental speakers in the upper balcony area struggled to provide adequate coverage.

After an EASE analysis of the room, Fargo-based Tricorne Audio opted to install two ICONYX IC24-R-II loudspeakers to address the issues. ICONYX steered array technology enables precise steering of the sound toward the audience and away from walls and other reflective surfaces, reducing reflections and improving intelligibility.

“Our client wanted better coverage overall,” explained Tricorne Audio’s Dallas Anderson. “With the ICONYX IC24 arrays, we were able to address the reflections, dead spots, and hot spots by steering the sound - a beam for the balcony, and separate beams for the floor and under balcony areas.”

The ICONYX IC24s were installed in both the House and Senate chambers on the wall behind the rostrum. The cabinets were custom painted to match the color of the wood paneling, addressing the requirement that the speakers blend in with the décor.

To round out the system in both the House and Senate chambers, Tricorne installed Biamp Tesira servers with IO cards, Audio Technica PRO Series 6-inch gooseneck mics, and a Shure wireless mic system.

“It’s a pretty basic and straightforward system in both the House and Senate chambers,” said Anderson. “With the ICONYX IC24s, the sound is very consistent, very even throughout.”


Posted by Julie Clark on 08/18 at 10:51 AM
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CADAC CDC four Digital Console Fronts Large-Scale System For Celebration At Iconic Ibiza Club

Console heads up large-scale system incorporating Funktion-One loudspeakers powered by Full Fat Audio amps with XTA processing

Iconic Ibiza club Space recently celebrated its 25th anniversary with a birthday bash centered on its outdoor Flight Club arena, with regular Ibiza sound specialists Project Audio providing a CADAC CDC four compact digital console in front of a large-scale system incorporating Funktion-One loudspeakers powered by Full Fat Audio amps with XTA processing.

The club’s earlier 2014 season “Opening Fiesta” in late May saw the Funktion-One rig fronted with a CADAC LIVE1 analog console. Ibiza, noted for its legendary nightlife, is the third largest of the Balearic Islands in the Mediterranean Sea, 50 miles off the coast of the city of Valencia, in eastern Spain.

Dave Millard, founder of Full Fat Audio, was Project Audio’s sound engineer for both events at Space, working in partnership with Funktion-One chief Tony Andrews and Project Audio’s Ibiza system technician George Yankov.

“We used the LIVE1 on the opening party, but for the 25th Anniversary we needed to wireless mic a troupe of flamenco dancers on stage and use some effects on them, so we went with the CDC four for that,” says Yankov. “It was a real pleasure to use both the analog LIVE1 and digital CDC four. The audio performance of both consoles is equally excellent. I cannot recall another desk so transparent and with so much drive and finesse.

“The CDC four really allows the audio to breath and just does not sound digital at all,” he continues. “Every nuance of a recording or live input can be heard, with even subtle changes to the controls. Bass performance is exciting with every note precise. Build quality is also first class and user interaction is straightforward.”

The 25th anniversary party featured a line-up of Playa d’en Bossa regulars and legends, including Nina Kraviz, Carl Craig, Jimmy Edgar, Shaun Reeves, Layo and Bushwacka!, Alfredo, José Padilla, Jose De Divina and César De Melero, a four-hour set from Erick Morillo, and ‘cameo’ spots from Fatboy Slim and Annie Mac.


Posted by Keith Clark on 08/18 at 10:29 AM
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L-Acoustics K2 Steps Up For Worldwide Premiere Of Latest X:Men Blockbuster At Javits Center

Needed to reproduce the film's bombastic 5.1 surround soundtrack, but the Javits is no cinema

For the launch of the summer blockbuster film X-Men: Days of Future Past, 20th Century Fox staged its worldwide premiere at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center on midtown Manhattan’s west side.

The debut of the $200-million-plus film, attended by Hugh Jackman, Jennifer Lawrence, Patrick Stewart, Halle Berry and other stars, was a huge event filling a hall inside the cavernous Javits Center and illuminating a 75-foot-wide screen hung on the hall’s north wall. The showing also had to be able to reproduce the film’s bombastic 5.1 surround soundtrack, but the Javits is no cinema; the same huge floor-to-ceiling glass wall that offers spectacular views of the Hudson River and New Jersey can also create uncontrollable aural reflections that would turn the hall into an acoustical nightmare.

Event producer Samantha Sackler Productions tapped NYC-based See Factor Industry, its longtime collaborator on east coast events and movie premieres, which in turn called upon a system headed by L-Acoustics K2 line source arrays. Specifically, the AV specialist deployed 24 K2 array modules, along with 12 SB28 subs and 16 coaxial 115XT HiQ wedges, all powered and processed by L-Acoustics LA8 amplified controllers. See Factor also provided all lighting, rigging and management services for the event.

“When doing movie surround sound events in unconventional venues with very high expectations from the client, and knowing that producers, directors and sound editors will be in the audience, it is quite challenging,” says Mark Friedman, one of See Factor’s principals. That was certainly the case at the highly reverberant Javits facility, due to its large reflective surfaces.

Friedman notes that reproducing the 5.1 surround soundtrack is important to fully experience a film like X-Men: Days of Future Past. See Factor’s technicians work with cinema-sound specialists from Dolby, as well as projection specialists from Digital Media Systems, to set up the sound system, carefully calibrating parameters such as delays and time alignments between speakers and calculating horizontal and vertical dispersion patterns. However, in such a reverberant environment that process is more complicated.

“It’s rare that you’d need to use a system as large as a K2 for a film premiere,” notes Friedman, who adds that See Factor has also deployed L-Acoustics KARA systems for the debut of other films such as the newly released James Brown biopic Get On Up, which premiered at Harlem’s Apollo Theater, the opening night of this year’s Tribeca Film Festival at the Beacon Theatre, and the now-classic Johnny Cash biography Walk The Line, which had its debut at the Hammerstein Ballroom. “But the Javits is huge and called for a much larger sound system.”

It also called for a smart, flexible sound approach, and the K2 delivered, configured in three hangs of eight modules each for the left-center-right cinema-sound frontal array, with eight 115XT HiQ wedges arrayed on either side of the room as surround speakers. On the hang closest to the glass wall, the K2’s unique PANFLEX asymmetrical variable horizontal coverage technology came into play with that loudspeaker hang having the directional fins on the loudspeakers set for 35 degrees of horizontal dispersion while the right hand was set for 55 degrees, thus keeping the sonic energy off the reflective glass surface and focused on the audience seating area.

The angles were determined based on the use of L-Acoustics SOUNDVISION 3D acoustical simulation software, which offers real-time mapping in coverage and delay modes, including time-delay optimization, and subwoofer acoustical and mechanical data. In addition, the operation of all of the speakers, zones and LA8 amplifiers were coordinated through L-Acoustics Network Manager, which provides a graphical interface optimized for tablet PC use and lets systems designers place units and groups in the workspace in a way that reflects their location in the field.

“This is what really made it work—the ability of PANFLEX to precisely aim the sound asymmetrically to avoid reflected sound,” explains Friedman. “At the same time, the DSP algorithms in Network Manager provided complete control over the amplifiers and speaker zones. K2’s PANFLEX gave us the physical level of control while Network Manager gave us the electronic plane of control, and those tools were invaluable.”

Dolby sound engineer David Berti was responsible for calibrating the audio for both the X-Men and James Brown premieres. “The See Factor crew was very professional and easy to work with, and they nailed both shows,” he says. “The audio playback was extremely accurate to cinema standards, and See Factor’s designs, speaker selection and positioning made my job of tuning the rooms very straightforward, yielding the correct playback response expected by the film makers. Both film companies were very happy with the results stating that the sound far exceeded their expectations.”


See Factor Industry

Posted by Keith Clark on 08/18 at 06:07 AM
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Friday, August 15, 2014

Frequency Coordination Group Providing RF Management Services For Demanding Situations

Recently finished an update to the longstanding wireless rig at Cirque du Soleil’s Zumanity show in Las Vegas

Between microphones, in-ear monitors, and intercoms, wireless system channel counts at performance venues numbering in the dozens are commonplace, routinely going into the hundreds for larger productions and installations. Managing that much RF without interference, dropouts, or intermodulation requires significant expertise.

To meet that need, Brooks Schroeder founded Frequency Coordination Group (FCG) in 2013, having designed and deployed antenna systems and managed frequency conflicts for a wide variety of clients. “I struck out on my own to provide a needed service,” Schroeder says. “Depending on the situation, the best wireless solution may involve products from a variety of manufacturers, and being independent allows us to provide a solution that is fully optimized for each client’s unique situation.”

With the pending changes to the UHF spectrum pending at the FCC and a wide range of wireless-dependent installations at risk, Frequency Coordination Group finds itself lending its expertise to some high-profile productions, often in difficult wireless environments like Las Vegas or Broadway.

“For example, we just finished an update to the longstanding wireless rig at Cirque du Soleil’s Zumanity show in Las Vegas,” Schroeder notes. “The show has been running for 10 years, so naturally, some of the equipment was due to be updated. In addition, a lot of their systems are in the 600 MHz band, much of which will likely not be legal to use a few years from now. We consult with these productions to ensure that any changes made are appropriate for continued long-term success.”

The Zumanity installation involved changing out a dozen wireless microphone channels while also incorporating ten new in-ear systems. The show requires coverage throughout the stage, house, and backstage areas of the 1,200-seat theater.

“It may not sound like a huge challenge, but any change you make in this environment is critical,” notes Dave Robertson, head of audio for the Zumanity production at the New York New York casino. “The new equipment sounds better and has a lot more channel flexibility than our old systems, but this involves a lot more than just finding open channels. It’s all about planning for the future, which is why we brought in FCG. Brooks brings in a lot of personal expertise and knowledge, plus some specialized equipment, to make sure that the frequency plan works as planned.”

Zumanity uses about 55 wireless channels, and to assure interference-free operation, those frequencies muse be coordinated with the rest of the building, including the hotel’s AV department and those of neighboring properties, pushing the total frequency count to well over 100.

“Perhaps the biggest source of potential interference is in a neighboring hotel, the Monte Carlo,” notes Robertson. “Their theater for the Blue Man Group backs right up to ours, so we coordinate with them as well. So even though a lot us audio technicians like to thing we’re RF specialists, the fact is that there are really only a handful of specialists out there who can do everything we need for success. That’s why we’re working with Brooks and Frequency Coordination Group. It’s just the smart thing to do.”

According to Schroeder, the majority of his company’s growing business involves high-stakes corporate shows, televised special events, and music festivals. “Having been in this business for 15 years or so has given me a great familiarity with a lot of the venues we’re asked to work in,” he says. “We also work with some of the larger tours, both musical and theatrical. In most of those cases, they are hiring RF specialists to go on the road. We work with them in rehearsals, making sure they have a solid system design and the right tools for the job. A big part of that is making sure they have the processes in place to ensure that will be successful as they move from city to city.”

Schroeder, who holds the title of project manager, sees wireless management as a multi-focal area. FCG arrives on site with the most advanced intermodulation software, scanners, filters and antennas. But in the current crowded RF environment, it takes more than hardware.

“We’re called Frequency Coordination Group because that’s our core service, but it goes a lot further than that,” says Schroeder. “We also bring a wealth of experience – with little get-out-of-jail tricks that help us consistently meet or exceed the customer’s needs. Like I tell people, you can go out and buy a great sports car, but that doesn’t mean you can win LeMans. It takes driving expertise, mechanics, and experience to be successful in a difficult environment. That’s what we bring to the party.”

Frequency Coordination Group 

Posted by Keith Clark on 08/15 at 11:57 AM
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RapcoHorizon Joins The Soundtrack Of Summer Tour With Foreigner, Styx And Don Felder

Engineers for all three acts utilizing custom RoadHog and SilverHog cables and connectors

Custom runs of RapcoHorizon RoadHog and SilverHog touring cables are serving a variety of needs for the current Soundtrack of Summer Tour featuring Foreigner, Styx and special guest Don Felder. 

As the group began to prepare for the tour, Lorenzo Banda, monitor engineer for Foreigner and a long-time RapcoHorizon user, recommended the cables to the Styx and Felder audio teams.

Though Foreigner and Styx are co-headliners and Felder is the opening act, each band required its own unique cabling requirements. For Foreigner and Felder, they exclusively are relying on RapcoHorizon—from instruments to speakers—all arranged in custom runs, while the engineers for Styx created their own runs using several of the company’s cables and connectors.

“We started using RapcoHorizon a while back, when the SilverHog cables first came out, and have used them for every performance since,” says Banda. “When the time came for us to plan the Soundtrack of Summer Tour, I knew the cables would be a perfect fit for Styx and Don Felder. When we met up for a gig at Fox News’ Fox & Friends in New York to promote the tour, I introduced the guys to some of their products.”

The stage design for this tour is complex since each group has its own setup, including lasers and special effects for Foreigner, large video walls for Styx and Felder opening each show by descending onto the arena. “Don is completely on board with the cables,” says Banda. “His engineers love it. Their whole stage setup is now using RapcoHorizon, and I think his studio is even starting to fill out with the cables as well. As for Styx, they’re also really stoked about the quality and sound of the cables.”

The custom instrument and speaker cables are road-ready, employing rugged constructions without sacrificing sound quality. “I noticed the high-end definition and fidelity on these cables, as it’s much more pristine than others I have heard,” Banda notes. “I use a lot of RapcoHorizon’s twisted pair cables, which have great resistance and a high-quality sound. I don’t know all the technical nuances that go into making the cables, but I can definitely hear the difference.”


Posted by Keith Clark on 08/15 at 08:40 AM
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Innovative Music Named As New Audient Compact Product Distributor In Australia

Melbourne-based company has strong links with the major resellers and independents around the country

Audient has announced that it’s compact product range, including the iD22 USB2 DAW interface and ASP880 8-channel mic pre and ADC, is now distributed in Australia by Innovative Music, a Melbourne-based company set up 24 years ago by CEO Steve Lincoln-Smith with strong links with the major resellers and independents around the country.

“We market products that ensure long term customer success, and our partnership with Audient will help us maintain this trend,” states Lincoln-Smith, :Audient’s expanding range of DAW focused products comprises of leading edge products that feature the legendary ASP console mic pre’s, top class Burr-Brown ADC, look great, and better still, come in at a surprisingly reasonable cost.”

“We’re partnering with premium distributors around the world and I’m delighted that Audient can now add Innovative Music to our channel,” adds Audient’s Simon Blackwood. “Steve and his team combine a strong customer focus with an exceptional knowledge of the industry, standing the Audient product range in good stead, now and in the future.”

Awave continues to look after Audient’s console sales in Australia.

Innovative Music

Posted by Keith Clark on 08/15 at 08:12 AM
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Thursday, August 14, 2014

Biamp Systems Selected for University of Oregon’s Hatfield-Dowlin Football Complex

AudiaFLEX and Nexia CS provide digital signal processing for technologically advanced collegiate sports facility

The Biamp Systems AudiaFLEX digital audio platform and Nexia CS digital audio processors are implemented throughout the University of Oregon’s (UO) new Hatfield-Dowlin Football Complex, a project combining multiple output capabilities and DSP power to bring high-quality distributed audio throughout the facility’s 25,000 square foot fitness center, signage panels, game-simulating outdoor practice field, and more.

The $68-million college sports facility boasts 145,000 square-feet of training space for the UO Ducks football team, including a variety of high-performance amenities normally reserved for professional athletes. Integrator CompView turned to Biamp, integrating the company’s AudiaFLEX platform within the facility’s training center heightens players’ motivation during weight sessions and on-field practices by sending music and crowd sounds throughout the entire facility. Linked by CobraNet throughout the complex, staff can easily adjust content and audio levels from a range of different access points.

“The Hatfield-Dowlin Football Complex is one of the most advanced college sports facilities ever created,” says Eric Boyd, systems integration manager at CompView. “With its impressive architecture, interior design elements, and dynamic use of AV capabilities, the audio solution for this state-of-the-art complex needed to provide enormous flexibility in order to adapt to such diverse spaces. By implementing Biamp’s AudiaFLEX and Nexia CS systems, we were able to overcome acoustic challenges without compromising sound quality.”

Biamp ensures robust sound delivery for every videowall, signage panel, and projector within the center’s theaters, meeting rooms, locker rooms, and cafeteria. To further enhance athlete training, AudiaFLEX turns the facility’s practice field into a stadium-like experience by blasting 115 decibels of crowd noise — recreating the raucous environment of game-time situations despite ambient structures that could potentially impact sound quality.

And, using Nexia CS, coaching staff can easily participate in videoconferencing sessions while Biamp’s overall solution enables audio within community-building areas such as the player lounge where athletes rest, recuperate, and interact via gaming equipment and table sports.

“Flexibility, ease-of-use, and dependability are crucial to flawless audio delivery within large-scale installations,” says Bruce Stimpson, Western North America regional director at Biamp Systems. “Biamp’s audio distribution products enable world-class facilities such as the Hatfield-Dowlin complex to easily customize audio experiences to fit their specific requirements. We are extremely pleased to be part of such a remarkable project and will continue to offer solutions that redefine the quality of sound.”

Biamp Systems

Posted by Keith Clark on 08/14 at 02:14 PM
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