The Newcastle-based R&B Group, established 22 years ago, specializes in high end corporate and live events. Adlib has worked with the company for five years, supplying sound equipment for some of their larger events.
R&B Group Development Director Antony Crerar explains, “When the time came to undertake an extensive audio upgrade, we asked Adlib to assist in providing a turnkey audio solution to fit our range of work and budget.”
Adlib’s Ian Nelson designed the system, while John Hughes co-ordinated the deal.
Adlib introduced Azule Finance, who assisted R&B with the purchase.
Crerar adds, “Azule were brilliant throughout the process. They understood the value in the investment, offered really competitive rates and totally appreciated how businesses like ours operate”.
The interest in L-Acoustics was initially sparked by another Newcastle based company – Nitelites – who purchased an L-Acoustics system from Adlib two years ago.
R&B had hired the system several times in the meantime, and really appreciated the sound quality.
They wanted a system that would produce crystal clear voice and spoken word reproduction as well as something with the power and punch to deliver great sounding live music. Like Nitelites, R&B decided to consult Adlib and together they fine-tuned a system to meet their exact requirements.
Following preliminary discussions and demonstrations, Crerar was “100 per cent confident that Adlib completely understood our markets and needs from the off”.
He continues, saying that the level of detail embraced by Adlib while working on the specification was “hugely impressive”, which assured him all the way through the process that the final system would be “extremely flexible and just right for us”.
Ian Nelson takes up the story, “KIVA met all the required criteria in terms of adaptability at a realistic price, with a high output level for the size of the speaker”.
A total of 18 L-Acoustics KIVA 2-way passive ultra compact WST enclosures were supplied together with six L-Acoustics 8XT speakers, plus four L-Acoustics SB15m subs and eight SB18 subs, flying frames and a stacking system, along with six L-Acoustics LA8 amplifiers.
Crerar is very happy with the crisp, clean sound of the KIVA and its uniform distribution. “It’s awesome” he states.
The other advantage of KIVA speakers is their light weight of 13kgs, which means a decent sized array can be flown at under 100kgs which suits many of the venues in which R&B regularly work.
It also looks neat, elegant and unobtrusive, which was another general consideration.
For control, versatility was again to the fore. Adlib specified a Soundcraft Vi1 console which is ideal for small to medium conferences and events and can easily cater for a full band without needing a supplementary console.
Nelson recommended the Vi stagebox with the Neutrik OpticalCON fibre connection that R&B already utilise for their projection systems and designed a cable infrastructure that made the system both flexible and modular for a range of events.
Adlib additionally designed a practical custom amp rack system for R&B consisting of single and doubled up LA8 units, which allow them to easily split the system down into smaller components or use it as one large system as required.
With some real foresight, at R&B’s request, all their rack distro panelling is built to be compatible with Adlib’s own systems and also with those of Nitelites, to enable seamless cross and supplementary rentals between the three companies.
R&B’s key crew received comprehensive manufacturer led training on both L-ACOUSTICS elements and the Soundcraft console at Adlib’s bespoke training facility.
The finished system was actually delivered directly from Adlib – complete with custom Adlib manufactured flightcases – to its first R&B gig in Sheffield as a ready-to-use system. From there it went straight up to Newcastle, and was followed by a further four days of intensive onsite training.
The speaker and cable flightcases are all standardised at a quarter truck width for speed, efficiency and maximum portability.
“We are delighted with the results,” enthuses Crerar, adding that many of his clients have noticed the difference offered by the new system.
“It was a big investment to make, and sourcing it through Adlib was a fantastic experience at every stage of the process – right from the first contact through to all the after-sales service and support. It’s been brilliant, and Adlib has really made the difference”.