Created as a lecture and examination space when the building was opened in the 1930s, the hall has a 284-seat main area that can be expanded to a 400-person capacity with the inclusion of a breakout room, hidden behind a moving tapestry at the back of the space. TS Professional Sound+Light (West Sussex) took on the installation project in the protected historic building to create a system that would be as flexible as the room itself.
“We originally had quite a limited system in here,” recalls Steve Barrett-White, AV manager at RIBA. “We had a two-channel, four-speaker system but because things have grown for RIBA on the events side, we required full 7.1 surround sound to cater to film screenings. In addition to this, the orientation in the breakout room can either face the main stage when it is being used as one large hall or can be rotated 90 degrees. This led to a design with 13 speakers across both rooms.”
Over three days, the TS Professional Sound+Light team installed Electro-Voice EVC-1122s as the main loudspeakers, with EVC-1082s as side fills and EVU-2082Bs as center fills in the main hall. Low-frequency support is via a pair of EVC-1181 subwoofers installed under the stage. The breakout space features three more EVC-1082s to allow for the different configurations.
Power and control is via a pair of IPX10:8 amplifiers from Dynacord. These eight-channel installation-dedicated models eliminated the need for a separate audio matrix and offer high-resolution 96 kHz DSP with Dante and OCA functionality.
“The amps all have preconfigured settings which we can select for the different uses of the hall,” adds Gabriel Thorp, senior AV technician at RIBA. “This has opened up the possibilities for how the space is used, and we can give our clients the assurance that the sound system can be optimized for their needs.”
Completing the project is Dynacord’s new SONICUE software, which provides system monitoring and control via a “speaker view” GUI. This gives the audio team a real-time visual reference to what is happening with the sound system, with the ability to monitor impedance, control levels and mute loudspeakers, when needed.