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Archive of the Audio Playback Category

CTS Audio Shows Faith in HARMAN’s JBL Professional VTX Line Arrays at National Catholic Youth Conference

NORTHRIDGE, California – Continuing a series of high-profile events using HARMAN’s JBL VTX line arrays and Crown I-Tech HD amplifiers, CTS Audio provided a HARMAN Professional audio system for the National Catholic Youth Conference at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis.

Sponsored by the National Federation for Catholic Youth Ministry, the National Catholic Youth Conference featured a variety of spoken-word, live music and dramatic performances. Given the event’s diverse programming, CTS Audio—which has supplied the sound reinforcement for the bi-annual National Catholic Youth Conference for more than 15 years—needed an audio system that would accommodate this variety in a large stadium environment. Working with production company Declan Weir Productions, CTS Audio designed and deployed a HARMAN audio system featuring JBL Professional VTX line arrays powered by Crown I-Tech HD amplifiers.

The production was configured in the round, with the main PA system including a total of 90 JBL VTX V25 fullsize line array elements (in six columns of 15 each), with 24 S28 subwoofers flown in the center of the main PA loudspeakers in a cardioid setup. Eight VRX932 Constant Curvature loudspeakers provided additional fill. At each end of the stadium, 24 JBL VERTEC® VT4888 midsize line array elements served as delay loudspeakers. Crown I-Tech HD 12000 amplifiers powered the system.

According to Mike Taylor, Vice President of CTS Audio, the main challenges of the event included proper time-alignment of the loudspeakers. “We were faced with a complex task of achieving direct sound rather than reflections in such a large stadium,” said Mike Taylor, Vice President of CTS Audio. “And with the design, coming up with a subwoofer arrangement that was even across the room was also a challenge.”

In addition, CTS Audio configured and monitored the audio system with JBL HiQnet Performance Manager™.

“[JBL’s Associate Director, Tour Sound] Paul Bauman and [HARMAN Professional’s Application Engineer, Live Sound and Rental for North America] Raul Gonzalez helped us develop a solution utilizing Performance Manager,” Taylor noted. “This enabled us to model and program every loudspeaker in the system before even hanging a single box.”

Although CTS Audio has used VTX frequently since adding the loudspeakers to its inventory, this was the first time CTS supplied VTX for the National Catholic Youth Conference. “The event was a huge success,” Taylor said. “Two years ago we used VERTEC and this was an improvement on an already good-sounding system. VTX is a whole different animal—the enclosures and the high-frequency range are amazing.”

HARMAN (www.harman.com) designs, manufactures and markets a wide range of audio and infotainment solutions for the automotive, consumer and professional markets – supported by 15 leading brands, including AKG®, Harman Kardon®, Infinity®, JBL®, Lexicon® and Mark Levinson®. The Company is admired by audiophiles across multiple generations and supports leading professional entertainers and the venues where they perform. More than 25 million automobiles on the road today are equipped with HARMAN audio and infotainment systems. HARMAN has a workforce of 14,600 people across the Americas, Europe, and Asia and reported sales of $4.5 billion for the last twelve months ended September 30, 2013.

Symetrix SymNet Radius 12×8 Dante Networked Audio DSP Keeps Indiana Town Dancin’ in the Streets

GREENFIELD, INDIANA: Although the city of Greenfield, Indiana is now a suburb of Indianapolis, its history runs deep into the 1800s, when it was a railway stop and the birthplace of famed poet James Whitcomb Riley. The city celebrates that tradition for a long weekend every October with Riley Days, which ranks among the Hoosier State’s best-attended festivals. Because Greenfield also puts on a Christmas festival and numerous other smaller citywide events throughout the year, it recently decided to invest in a citywide sound reinforcement system. Local A/V integration firm Force Technologies designed and installed the system for future expansion and convenient control using the Symetrix SymNet Radius 12×8 Dante networked audio signal processor and ARC-WEB user control for mobile devices.

“Riley Days is a big deal,” said A.J. Fager, owner of Force Technology Solutions. “Greenfield closes down its main streets, and vendors from all around set up tents. The city officials wanted a permanent sound reinforcement system that would serve Riley Days, as well as the other events that the city hosts. The Symetrix SymNet Radius 12×8 was the perfect processor because it is powerful, cost-effective, and easily scalable via Dante. Moreover, we could give them customized control via SymVue real-time user control panel application running on any Windows compatible PC and simultaneously give them simple, intuitive control for technicians’ smartphones via Symetrix’ ARC-WEB technology.”

In its initial deployment, the system is comprised of eight zones, each of which are independently tuned and delayed to minimize echo effects. Weatherproof Community R.5HP 8 Ohm and R.5HPt 70-Volt loudspeakers mounted to poles and powered by Crown CDi-Series amplifiers now dot downtown Greenfield. “Those loudspeakers and amplifiers are capable of delivering high sound pressure, and the design became a case of ‘less is more,’” said Fager. “When we modeled the system, it was apparent that more loudspeakers would have complicated the delay scheme and ultimately resulted in more harm than good.” Inputs to the system include two music sources and two wireless microphone systems.

The Greenfield IT department manages the citywide sound reinforcement system. Fager designed a custom Windows-compatible, PC-based control interface using Symetrix SymVue software. The interface consists of a map of the city broken down by zone. Within each zone, technicians can control volume and other aspects of system performance. Because such adjustments are sometimes better made from the zone itself, Fager also gave them a Symetrix ARC-WEB interface. Technicians access the password protected ARC-WEB interface from their smartphones and can thus make adjustments from anywhere.

Already, the city officials are excited to expand the system with four more zones. Fager anticipated this, and that was part of the reason why he went with the Dante networked SymNet Radius 12×8. Because its full processing power is far from tapped, Fager can simply add a Symetrix SymNet xOut 12 and, via the magic of Dante, the system will have the required additional outputs at little expense.

ABOUT SYMETRIX Symetrix is dedicated to making life sound better. As a world leader in the development and manufacturing of digital audio signal processing (DSP) systems and accessories, Symetrix provides best in class audio management solutions to businesses, schools, non-profits and government organizations.

For more information on Symetrix products visit www.symetrix.co

Pearl-Cohn Entertainment Magnet High School Launches Next Generation of Producers with HARMAN’s JBL Professional M2 and LSR Studio Monitors, AKG Microphones and Lexicon Processors

NASHVILLE, Tennessee – The first of its kind in the US, Pearl-Cohn Entertainment Magnet High School in Nashville, Tennessee provides a unique opportunity to students interested in pursuing careers in the entertainment industry, offering concentrations in audio engineering, radio production, broadcasting and other media industries. Fulfilling a key initiative of the project, Pearl Cohn partnered with the Nashville Chapter of the Recording Academy® Producers and Engineers (P&E) Wing in late 2012, to build a fully functioning, world-class recording studio, creating the opportunity for students to learn music production skills in a professional, hands-on environment. The new studio is equipped with HARMAN Professional’s newest JBL studio monitors, AKG headphones and microphones, Lexicon effects and Crown amplifiers.

The transformation of Pearl Cohn into the Nation’s first Entertainment Magnet High School was the personal project of Nashville Mayor Karl Dean, and Music Makes Us, a music education advocacy group, working to create a world-class learning environment for entertainment arts in Nashville.

Renowned studio designer Steven Durr donated his time and energy to develop the plans and oversee construction of the fully equipped studio. In a remarkable effort, producer/engineers Jeff Balding, Chuck Ainlay, in addition to Ben Fowler, Julian King, Nick Palladino, Terry Palmer, Matt Schlachter, Jon Randall Stewart, Durr and notable members of the Nashville music community rolled up their sleeves as a valuable subcommittee to put the facility together.

“Music education is so important to The Recording Academy, so when we were approached with the idea of Pearl-Cohn’s studio, we were proud to help in the development, contacting key associates in the music world to construct the first-of-its-kind high school facility,” says Susan Stewart, South Regional Director, The Recording Academy. “The studio became a reality with the help of the generous manufacturers and the community, who bonded together to provide students the hands-on environment they deserve to excel in the music industry.”

According to Sam Lorber, Instructional Designer at Pearl-Cohn Entertainment Magnet High School, the institution was developed with the desire of engaging students with project-based lessons centered on the entertainment industry theme.

“It was the intention of the school from the start to provide professional-level education. Whether students are going to pursue an audio degree or a career immediately after graduating, they will have the problem-solving, communication and collaboration skills associated with a strong audio-based foundation,” Lorber stated. “With the P&E Wing and HARMAN, our vision of building the all-encompassing studio has far surpassed what we ever imagined was possible!”

The commissioning of the studio at Pearl-Cohn marks the first installation of the JBL M2 Master Reference Monitors powered by two Crown iTech 5000 HD power amplifiers. The M2, JBL’s flagship main monitor system leverages 7 patented technologies, JBL’s next generation transducers and its new Image Control Waveguide to deliver exceptional imaging, frequency response and high output to very broad space in the control room. .

The control room also includes a 5.1 JBL LSR6300 system, while edit rooms are equipped with JBL LSR4300 studio monitor systems. AKG microphones and headphones include K271MKII and K240MKII headphones, D12 VR drum microphone, C214s, a C414 matched stereo set and three C451B condensers. Lexicon’s PCM96 Parallel Stereo and Surround Sound Reverb/effect processor was installed. Pearl-Cohn also installed three complete Lexicon plug-in packages.

Pearl-Cohn provides nine audio classes, which have become the most popular courses since the program was established. The studio/audio program has become the centerpiece of a curriculum that includes a student-run record label and publishing company, plus classes in studio techniques for musicians and singers. Students select a pathway—
choosing between careers as producers, managers, engineers, marketing agents, and more—and enroll in classes beginning with a survey of the music industry and progressing into the specific areas of each student’s interest.

“With a student-run record label, a state of the art studio and the support of music industry veterans, the stage is set at Pearl-Cohn for emerging talent to make their mark in the music world. The future of the industry lies within these kids. We are proud to partner with The Recording Academy in support of this project,” stated Mark Ureda, Vice President, Strategy and Technology, HARMAN Professional.

“We want our students to realize their dreams and potential. They enter the program with ambitions and we want them to graduate with the skills that will provide a stepping stone for a successful career in the audio industry and success in life,” Lorber continued. “Having a partner like HARMAN enables us to create a student-centered studio that rivals university and professional facilities. The sound emanating from our studio is superb and we can’t thank our partners enough for helping Pearl-Cohn inspire its students in this top-of-the-line learning environment.”

For more information on the Pearl-Cohn Entertainment Magnet High School, please visit http://www.pearlcohnhs.mnps.org.

HARMAN (www.HARMAN.com) designs, manufactures, and markets a wide range of infotainment and audio solutions for the automotive, consumer, and professional markets. It is a recognized world leader across its customer segments with premium brands including AKG®, Harman Kardon®, Infinity®, JBL®, Lexicon®, and Mark Levinson® and leading-edge connectivity, safety and audio technologies. The company is admired by audiophiles across multiple generations and supports leading professional entertainers and the venues where they perform. More than 25 million automobiles on the road today are equipped with HARMAN audio and infotainment systems. HARMAN has a workforce of about 14,000 people across the Americas, Europe, and Asia and reported sales of $4.3 billion for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2013.

David Lees Joins Yamaha Commercial Audio Systems NUAGE Production System Team

BUENA PARK, Calif.—Yamaha Commercial Audio Systems, Inc. (YCAS) has announced the appointment of David Lees to the position of NUAGE District Manager effective immediately. Lees has been with Yamaha since 2002 and has held various positions within the Professional Audio & Combo Division as a Steinberg and Hi-Tech District Manager in the mid-Atlantic region, as well as the Keyboard Division. Prior to joining Yamaha, Lees worked for EMU Systems and previously at ProSound in Denver.

“We are very pleased to welcome David to the YCAS, Inc. team and look forward to the role he will play in building upon the already strong momentum developed for the NUAGE Production System,” states Paul Furtkamp, National Sales Manager, Yamaha Commercial Audio Systems, Inc.

Lees is currently living in Delaware and will relocate to the Southern California area in early 2014. “I’m very much looking forward to joining the YCAS organization and to working with such a strong network of NUAGE dealers and end-users.”

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About Yamaha Commercial Audio Systems, Inc.:
Yamaha Commercial Audio Systems, Inc. (YCAS) provides a full line of integrated professional audio products offering complete systems solutions for the broadcast, sound reinforcement/installed sound, touring, commercial recording, and post production markets. With the addition of NEXO to the product line, the company remains the official U.S. and Canadian distributor for all NEXO speaker models. YCAS offers comprehensive in-house and field product training for its customers, a dedicated dealer network, and 24/7 technical support.

Martin Audio MLA Compact Unites Redemption Church

Gilbert, AZ––When Redemption Church recently committed to an expansion and retrofit of their multipurpose worship and conference center, they wanted an audio, video and lighting system that would provide a truly meaningful experience for each one of their members.

The first challenge was the center itself, formed from an irregularly shaped room caused by a large extension designed to redefine the space without negatively impacting the original. Measuring about 180 feet wide by 60 feet deep, it was hardly ideal for reproducing sound, representing a very real challenge for any audio system.

Fortunately, church member Jim Jorgensen was an experienced audio engineer who had a close relationship with Redemption Lead Pastor Tim Maughan. Because Jorgensen had worked for leading audio providers and Martin Audio as a product support specialist, he was a logical choice as a consultant for this project.

When Maughan set out to find the ideal system for the new center, “Jim was the first person I called because he’d done the previous install in our chapel using Martin Audio W8LM line arrays. I didn’t want to do anything without knowing what he was thinking, because churches invariably have rooms with certain acoustic problems and typically there’s not a lot of work done to make them sound better.

“I wanted the new worship center to sound as good as it could be,” Tim continues. “Jim’s first recommendation was the new Martin Audio MLA Compact system which he thought would be ideal for us because of its coverage and control. So we began to talk about it to confirm what I needed from the system. It had to do both music reproduction really well and the spoken word with absolute clarity. Most of the church systems do one or the other, but rarely do both.

“Once I realized what it could do—and I trust Jim––I went to the team I work with and told them the investment in MLA Compact was worth it because we had to replace the sound equipment in every church building we’ve ever been a part of at least two or three times, so it’s more than worth bumping up the budget to get the system that we needed and would last for a long time.”

After a yearlong fundraising effort, Redemption purchased the MLA Compact system from On Stage Audio, a certified MLA installation partner. The actual audio setup consists of 12 MLA Compact enclosures hung in left, center, right hangs of four boxes each with two MLX subwoofers mounted under the platform stage at the outer corners. The system is completed by Martin Audio Merlin Controllers for loudspeaker and network management and also includes a Yamaha M7CL 48 channel mixer and a custom Whirlwind 64 channel splitter. Technical Director Tim Smith and rigger Mike “Milk” Arnold did the in-house installation.

The multi-purpose center holds up to 1000 members at each of the three services held on Sunday. Designed by debartolo architects ltd. for optimum sound, the space has walls with 4” of acoustic material covered by 1” slats of Cedar for the first eight feet. According to Jorgensen, “the room sounds drastically different above 10 feet in the air. The control and phase coherence of the MLA Compact system and predictability of the software enables them to make it sound great where the people are and decrease the energy where people aren’t.”

Much of the wall space is devoted to video with two 16-foot sections on the sides and a 28 ft. wide and 16 ft. tall screen behind the stage. The rest of the white walls are used for colored LED projections, all of which determined that the speakers had to be hung out of sight high up in the ceiling from flying frames attached to an angle iron hanging from trussing. Martin Audio Display™ prediction software was used to determine the optimum curvature of the arrays.

“The system location actually grew out of a ‘wrestling match’ with video because everyone wanted the same space,” says Maughan, “so the challenge was finding the right location for the speakers. We’ve been fans of Martin Audio with the W8LMs and the F2s we use for a mobile outdoor system because they deliver exactly what we expect. This was a test of asking the MLA Compact system to do something for us, so putting it up in the ceiling and changing the points where it hits the audience and dialing that in worked perfectly. The sound is exactly where we need it to be, which wouldn’t happen with another cabinet.

“I have huge expectations for audio,” Tim emphasizes. “Not just to reinforce sound, but to really make it musical. In most churches that I’ve been, none of the audio they’re running does that. It’s just sound reinforcement and often sounds really harsh without much quality. The MLA system has outperformed my expectations, which is rare.

“We have bands with electric instruments, amplifiers, and live drums that run the gamut from bluegrass to rock music. I was concerned that the subs would overpower everything with that ‘wall of speaker’ type of bass sound, but we put just two MLX under the stage platform and they’re the best sounding subs I’ve ever heard in my life.”

Maughan feels audio, video and lighting is a very subjective area in any church, especially Redemption, which is moving towards a more contemporary style of worship. Pleasing every member of the congregation, from the youngest to the oldest can be a delicate balance.

As it happens, the congregation has not only accepted the upgrade, it’s united them as well: “Sound is always very challenging,” Tim concludes. “If it’s too loud or too harsh, we get a lot of comments. We have hundreds of older people in the congregation, and this is the first time we’ve done a technical upgrade where we haven’t heard one complaint about the audio. It has worked for everyone across the board and helped them experience the service in a much more meaningful and profound way.”

For more about Redemption Church, please click to www.gilbert.redemptionaz.com

For more about debartolo architects, please click to www.debartoloarchitects.com

For more about Martin Audio, please click to www.martin-audio.com.

About Martin Audio®
Founded by audio engineer David Martin in 1971, Martin Audio pioneered the use of all-horn-loaded bass designs in world-class touring loudspeaker systems for groups such as Pink Floyd, ELP and Supertramp. Located outside of London, Martin Audio now embodies a sophisticated mix of acoustic design, research, mathematical modeling and software engineering for a wide range of products in the installation, cinema and touring sound markets.

Funky Junk Supplies Royer Mics For The Stereophonics Latest Tour

The Stereophonics, one of Britain’s most instantly recognisable bands, have just completed a major UK arena tour to promote their new album Graffiti On The Train.

The equipment list for the tour included three Royer R-121L ribbon microphones, which were supplied by Royer’s UK distributor Funky Junk.

Royer’s R-121 Ribbon Microphone is renowned for its ability to bring an extremely natural and realistic analogue sound to digital recording and live stages. The TEC Award winning R-121L, the ruggedized and more road-worthy ‘live’ version of the microphone, has been specifically designed to withstand the rigours of live touring. Royer won the prestigious 2013 Technical Grammy partly for their R-121, the first ribbon microphone suitable for close-miking electric guitar and other high SPL sound sources.

The microphones were chosen for the Stereophonics tour by FOH engineer Dave Roden who wanted to continue with their ongoing ethos of constant improvement of the overall sound quality at their live gigs.

“I haven’t used Royer R-121 microphones in a live situation before, but the band have used them in the studio and been very happy with the results they have achieved,” Roden says. “I have also heard them being used by other FOH engineers whom I greatly admire, (Jim Ebdon and Marc Carolan for example) and have always been really impressed with the results. I decided to use them, too, in order to up our game.”

Dave Roden was confident that incorporating Royer R-121 ribbon microphones into his live equipment arsenal would help him capture lead vocalist/guitarist Kelly Jones and lead backing vocalist/guitarist Adam Zindani’s individual guitar tones, as well as the raw energy for which the Stereophonics are famous.

“The band members have all moved on to IEM’s (in ear monitors) and they were hearing things completely differently to the way they’ve been used to with wedges,” Dave Roden explains. “In order to adapt, some of the on-stage sources required a more hi-fi approach. This was a challenge for everyone involved, but was a very positive and necessary step in respect to the future performance capabilities of the band, and gave our Monitor Engineer Dave Retson and myself the perfect opportunity to significantly upgrade our mic stock. Both the band on stage and the audience in the arenas were very happy with the guitar sounds they were hearing when we used the R-121L’s on the tour.”

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About Funky Junk:
Funky Junk is Europe’s leading supplier of new and refurbished professional recording equipment and services. It has offices in London, Paris, Milan and Vigo and has been in business for over 20 years. The company is renowned for its high level technical knowledge, backed by extensive workshop facilities. As well as handling sales and repairs, Funky Junk also acts as a distributor to a number of equipment brands and deals with their service and warranty.

For more information please visit www.proaudioeurope.com

DPA’s d:facto™ Vocal Mics Hit the Road on MKS Tour


DPA’s d:facto™ II Vocal Microphones have been proving their flexibility and giving great performances on tour with MKS, the original Sugababes line-up.

The mics have also been at work in the prestigious setting of the world-famous Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club in London. Charlie Dale, in-house engineer at Ronnie Scott’s and Front of House engineer for the band MKS and US rapper Angel Haze, is using DPA d:facto II Vocal Microphones across all these very different setups.

It was at Ronnie Scott’s that Dale first came across the microphones. DPA’s UK distributor Sound Network lent the club a unit to try out and Dale was immediately impressed.

“They instantly became my mic of choice for lead vocals, surpassing two big brands I had been using previously,” he says. “‘The d:facto’s mostly flat frequency response until its soft boost at 10 kHz gave me the ability to sculpt a very true representation of the performer’s voice with clear highs so that I don’t have to fight against feedback to pull out, and with all the warm tone one would expect from many jazz vocals.”

Dale decided that for the same reasons he wanted to use it on his pop gigs, again allowing him to easily create vocal sounds on a par with the studio-quality vocals of the artists’ records. And it’s not just the engineers who delight in the sound of the d:facto II Vocal Microphones.

“With performers, the clarity of the mic is often commented on,” Dale adds. “It allows a vocalist to hear the nuances of their vocal and gives them more control, even through loud stage wedges.”


Dale has had the opportunity to work with many big-name microphone brands in his career but, after hearing the d:facto, he believes that none of them offer the clarity and tone he wants from a live vocal.

“With MKS, all three of the girls have very different and distinct-sounding voices, and the d:facto II Vocal Microphone handled all of them with ease,” he says.

Dale’s work with rapper Angel Haze could hardly be more different.

“She rarely sings on a gig,” Dale explains. “Instead, she spends most of the time rapping hard and fast into the capsule at close proximity, often cupping the mic as many rap artists do. But the d:facto II handles all this well, making it much easier for me to pick up every syllable she spits out without loss of tonal quality on her vocal.”

Dale’s criteria for an excellent microphone are, he says, clarity, tone, excellent feedback rejection and low off-axis noise. To date, artists who Dale has used DPA’s d:facto with have all been very positive about the microphone, as have other engineers.

“Having a great vocal sound is often the hardest part of the mix, especially on noisy stages, and the d:facto helps on that front by offering a very clear and clean initial signal,” he says. “Its linear off-axis response means that what little bleed there is from wedges and back line is very clear, un-distorted and, most importantly, low-level, allowing me to get a great vocal sound every time, no matter how big or small the room, what the musical style is and how loud the band are. Studio-quality vocal tone on every gig – how could I say no to that?”

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About DPA
DPA Microphones is the leading Danish Professional Audio manufacturer of high quality condenser microphone solutions for professional applications. DPA’s ultimate goal is to provide you – whether you’re in live sound, recording, theater or broadcast – with the absolute finest possible microphone solutions for your tasks. DPA takes no shortcuts in the design processes nor makes any compromises in manufacturing, which is all done at the DPA factory in Denmark. As a result, DPA’s products are globally praised for their exceptional clarity and transparency, unparalleled specifications, supreme reliability, and above all, pure, uncolored and undistorted sound.
For more information, please visit www.dpamicrophones.com

Premiere Southern California Live Music Venue Steps it Up with VARIA

Long Beach, CA – December 2013…The Gaslamp is one of Southern California’s best-known night spots, with a rich history of great entertainment and an impressively eclectic roster. On any given night, the club’s stage plays host to artists ranging from hard rock and metal to punk, acoustic, and even contemporary classical performances, as well as comedy, DJs, tribute acts, karaoke, and even televised sporting events.

The Gaslamp offers up a full kitchen, with private booths and tables as well as a bar and dance floor, making it a great place for dinner, drinks, and a night out. But as owner Mike Newfeld explains, the club’s acoustics have long been a struggle.

“It’s a very boomy room,” says Newfeld. “It’s got high ceilings, concrete floors, and just not very good sound dispersion — a lot of pockets that are dead space or too loud. The challenge has been to find a system that would deliver consistent coverage and sound good, no matter where you are in the room.”

Engineer Tony Purvis agrees. “It was really, really hard to get a good mix throughout the whole club — to achieve that ‘comfortable loud,’ where everyone can enjoy themselves, enjoy the music and the performance but still be able to hold a conversation.”

The Gaslamp recently upgraded their sound system, installing the new VARIA modular point source line array system from Renkus-Heinz. As Purvis observes, the VARIA system has completely changed the equation for the club.

“The experience that I’ve had with the new VARIA system has been just amazing,” Purvis remarks. “The design of the system has enabled complete coverage. This system makes my life easier.”

“We couldn’t be happier with the new VARIA system,” adds Newfeld. “Our customer base noticed immediately. It’s loud, clear, and clean, without blowing people away. Thanks to the new VARIA system, we are now known as the premiere live music venue in Southern California.”

 

 

 

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Headquartered in Foothill Ranch, California, Renkus-Heinz, Inc. is the worldwide leader in the design and manufacture of audio operations networks, digitally steerable arrays, powered and non-powered loudspeakers, system specific electronics and fully integrated Reference Point Array systems.

Masque Sound Celebrates the Spirit of the Holiday Season with Christmas Live! 2013 at GraceWay Bible Church

As GraceWay Bible Church gets ready to stage its annual holiday program, Christmas Live!, Masque Sound, a leading theatrical sound reinforcement, installation and design company, returns with a custom audio equipment package to support Sound Designer Nathan Schmalbach and Technical Director Kevin Webb’s production.

Now in its fifth year, Christmas Live! is an immersive experience transporting visitors back 2,000 years to the very first Christmas. An hour-long guided walking tour, it features 11 interactive scenes with actors and animals located in and around the church grounds. The cast and crew total 300 people, with 15 involved directly in its technical aspects.

This is Masque Sound’s third year providing rental gear for Christmas Live!. As the program has grown over the past three years, so has the company’s support. In 2011, Masque Sound supplied a large wireless rig to distribute audio throughout the show. Last year, the rental package grew to include a semi-centralized system, and this year, Masque Sound provided a system that will allow the entire program to be centralized.

“Our goal over the past few years has been to centralize all of the controls for the entire program, which is no easy task when you are talking about remotely mixing and controlling 11 different shows, all of which are active at the same time,” says Schmalbach. “We have been working with Masque Sound for months to make sure we have the necessary equipment to execute this. It’s been a challenge, but Masque Sound has done a great job in giving us the gear and support to make our vision a reality.”

In order to mix the show from one central point, Schmalbach and his team will utilize a binaural audio (3D Audio) remote listening system. The system is composed of AKG C414 B-ULS and Earthworks M30 microphones, Genelec 1032A and 8030A monitors, XTA DP448s and Meyer Sound Galileo 616s for processing, XTA DS8000/D splitters, Rational Acoustics Smaart software and a Midas Venice 240 console. Audio is distributed from the control center with a Riedel RockNet 300 digital audio network. The speaker package consists of L-Acoustics MTD108As, 115XTs, SB218 and dB-SUB subwoofers, and Meyer Sound UPM-1Ps, UPA-1Ps and UPJ-1Ps. All of the L-Acoustics speakers are powered via Lab.gruppen fP Series amplifiers.

Figure53 QLab software running on Mac Minis with RME Fireface 800 interfaces handles the show’s effects and music playback. Masque Sound also provided a large wireless rig consisting of a Sennheiser 2000 Series 24-channel kit. To accompany the Sennheiser wireless package, Masque Sound supplied four Domed Helical Antennas from its sister company, Professional Wireless Systems (PWS).

“Masque Sound is always there for whatever we need. The program would not be as technically advanced as it is without their first-class equipment and support,” adds Schmalbach. “They do a wonderful job, and we can’t imagine working with anyone else.”

Christmas Live! will take place Friday, December 6 and Friday, December 13, starting at 5:30 p.m., and Sunday, December 8 and Sunday, December 15, starting at 4:30 p.m. For more information and to get free tickets, visit www.gracewaybc.org.

About Masque Sound
Founded in 1936 by a trio of Broadway stagehands, Masque Sound evolved into one of NYC’s most successful theatrical sound reinforcement, installation and design companies specializing in theatrical, house of worship, sporting, corporate, TV broadcast and live concert events. Celebrating more than 75 years in the industry, the company is lead by Geoff Shearing, the firm’s 3rd generation owner, and Vice President and General Manager Stephanie Hansen. The company also operates Florida-based Professional Wireless Systems, a leader in the development and implementation of wireless technology. Credits range from major Broadway shows and tours including “Phantom of the Opera,” “Mamma Mia!,” “Lion King,” “Jersey Boys,” “Memphis,” “The Book of Mormon,” “Newsies,” “Once” and “Kinky Boots” to yearly Super Bowl broadcasts and installations of varying sizes, including New York’s New Victory Theater and historic St. Bartholomew’s Church. Masque Sound’s 70,000 sq. ft. corporate headquarters and main assembly facility is located at 21 East Union Ave., East Rutherford, NJ, 20 minutes from midtown Manhattan. For more information, call (201) 939-8666 or visit www.MasqueSound.com.

World Renowned Cathedral Gets World Class Sound with Iconyx

St. Louis, MO – November 2013… Completed in 1914, the Cathedral Basilica of Saint Louis is renowned for its breathtaking mosaic works — one of the largest in the world. Comprising more than 41.5 million pieces, and covering 83,000 square feet, the mosaics display took more than 75 years to complete, and draws visitors from throughout the world.

The 2000-seat cathedral’s architecture is as exquisite as it is acoustically challenging, capped with a massive dome that soars to 150 feet high at its center. “It’s an exceptionally challenging environment,” explains Gary Haselhorst, President of Valley Park, MO-based Cignal Systems. “There are so many concave surfaces, with 360 degrees of windows, and the dome just exacerbates everything. There’s not a soft surface in there — marble floors, hard pews — and there are transepts on either side that create even more reflections.”

Not surprisingly, the Cathedral has struggled to find a sound system that could cope with such a challenging space. “The old system was simply ineffective,” says Haselhorst. “They had about twenty 12-inch two-way cabinets around the perimeter, hung at about 30 feet in the air. There was a very fine line between enough volume and too much volume. If we brought up the direct feed too high the room would go into feedback.”

The solution presented itself in the form of Iconyx digitally steerable column arrays from Renkus-Heinz. A pair of Iconyx IC32-R-II columns are installed left and right of the altar platform. As Haselhorst explains, the Iconyx was a clear and obvious solution.

“As proof of concept, we took a single Iconyx 32 into the Cathedral, put it stage right of the altar sanctuary area, and steered the beam away from the reflective surfaces. Even with one speaker, we were miles beyond the existing sound system.”

Haselhorst adds that the 32-element column was exactly what was needed in this reflective space. “We didn’t need the SPL, but we needed the low frequency control. Below 250 Hz, the RT in that room is unmanageable.”

A second set of Iconyx IC16-R-II columns are mounted midway back in the room as delays. “We could have easily hit the back of the room with the mains, but the transepts created another issue. If we aimed the beam high enough to hit the back of the room, we were hitting the transepts too. Using the IC16 columns as a delay kept us from having to push the front elements too hard and hitting the transept walls.” Time alignment is handled within the Iconyx software. A pair of Symetrix Radius units provides additional signal processing.

The Iconyx also offered a low-profile, streamlined design that blended well with the decor. “We custom painted them to match the walls,” says Haselhorst.

The new system has made an immense difference, says Haselhorst.  “We took down twenty loudspeakers that were aimed all over the place, and replaced them with four sources that are aimed with precision. You can hear someone now as if you were talking to them ten feet away.”

Haselhorst says the best compliment was from the archbishop himself. “He said that now he can pull up his old sermons and reuse them, and this time people will be able to hear them.”

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Headquartered in Foothill Ranch, California, Renkus-Heinz, Inc. is the worldwide leader in the design and manufacture of audio operations networks, digitally steerable arrays, powered and non-powered loudspeakers, system specific electronics and fully integrated Reference Point Array systems.

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