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The new K3 arrays in place, joined by additional L-Acoustics components, at Grand Halle de la Villette in Paris.

L-Acoustics K3 Continues A Tradition At The Grande Hall de la Villette In Paris

New sound design for multi-events space anchored by K3 arrays joined by Kara II and X Series loudspeakers as well as SB28 subwoofers in replacing original V-DOSC arrays dating back to the mid-'90s.

The Grand Halle de la Villette in Paris, an example of 19th century cast iron and glass architecture, designed by French architect Victor Baltard that was transformed into a multi-use space in 1985 hosting exhibitions, concerts, theatre shows, and festivals, has implemented a new sound design headed by L-Acoustics K3 arrays supplied and installed by production company B Live.

The Grande Halle, which includes the 5,000 capacity Grand Halle, the Salle Charlie Parker, and the Nave, was one of the first venues in the world that was outfitted with V-DOSC, the first full-frequency L-Acoustics line source array. Installed there in the mid-’90s, it offered more than 25 years of service before being replaced by the recently deployed system.

The Grand Halle’s 18,000-square-meter space is modulable to accommodate a wide variety of events, from a cocktail party for 8,000 to a formal seated event for 4,000 visitors. The new K3 loudspeakers complement the venue’s existing inventory of Kara II, X Series, and SB28 subwoofers, and it also has the potential to be reconfigured according to the needs of the production or deployed in other venues as needed.

For most of the year, the system is set up in a left, center, right configuration, with nine K3 per side flanking a center hang of six K3. KS28 subs are deployed in cardioid configuration and surround is provided by four X12 per side. Following the installation, the team at the Grande Halle received a week of training from L-Acoustics application engineer Arnaud Delorme.

For this year’s Jazz à La Villette, hosted annually at the Grande Halle and attracting more than 30,000 jazz enthusiasts every September, technical director Daniel Matthews designed a configuration using the new system, working closely with head of Audiovisual Department Olivier Olry and freelance system engineer Valérien Langlais. The design comprised left and right main arrays of 12 K3 per side to limit reverberation, optimize coverage, and deliver an even SPL across the entire audience area.

In addition, two Kara II per side were hung below the K3 for downfill with a center hang of six Kara II to help provide vocal clarity. AutoFIR array-processing was applied in groups of two K3. Four KS28 subs were flown in cardioid configuration.

A further two Kara II provided delay coverage for the last rows of the audience close to the roof, while X8 loudspeakers were positioned on the stage lip for frontfill. The system is controlled by LA12X amplified controllers on a redundant Milan AVB network and AES fallback, with processing is managed by a P1 Processor.

“The quick and easy rigging system for K3 and KS28 is a big advantage for us,” says Olry. “It took no time to hang the system, and we quickly got used to using the Delta 1.5T accessory to remotely adjust the azimuth angle of the K3 lines from two rear motor points. It’s a life changer as everything can be set, adjusted, and fixed at ground level.”

“We’ve had great feedback from visiting engineers,” adds Matthews. “K3 is a true full-range system, which responds very well from 40 Hz with great coherence across the spectrum, and it sounds great straight out of the box.

“The versatility of K3 is a huge advantage for us, there are almost no limits on how we can deploy it,” he concludes. “It has great low end in a compact format, and the horizontal adjustment with Panflex is very efficient. From the initial design in Soundvision with its Autosplay and AutoFIR functions, to the setup with Network Manager and the M1 measurement platform, everything is designed to maximize efficiency, and you can get straight into optimizing the system. And with K3, you quickly know how to make sure everything is optimized in terms of SPL distribution and frequency coherence for the entire audience.”


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