A virtual press conference from Sound & Video Contractor

Archive of the Case Studies Category

AV Stumpfl gives Norwegian rock ‘Wings’ for Pink Floyd tribute concerts

YouTube video: watch?v=BeOmGmiHa-s&feature=youtu.be © Blank

Unique projection mapping, blending and warping in spectacular setting

Everyone is familiar with the idea of a rock concert, but few events take the word ‘rock’ as literally as the recent series of outdoor gigs staged in Norway by the Pink Floyd tribute band Puls. Against the dramatic backdrop of the Kilden-Fjæreheia quarry in Grimstad, the band played six sold-out nights to audiences who were wowed not just by the music but by the spectacular projection-mapped backdrop that was created courtesy of AV Stumpfl’s Wings AV multi-image control technology.

Event design and production for the Puls concerts was the responsibility of Norwegian company Blank. Tomas Håvik, CEO of AV Stumpfl’s Scandinavian distributor Preqbi AB, recalls the project’s technical origins:

“Blank were searching for a solution that could deliver edge-blending and warping of multiple projected images, automated according to a timeline and with built-in media serving capability. We advised them that Wings AV could deliver exactly what they needed, and once the decision had been taken, we helped them with education and support.”

Kent Bakke, General Manager at Blank, explains: “Our challenge was that we wanted to map the actual face of the quarry that provides a backdrop to the band’s stage set. The face of this ‘mountain’ measures about 55 metres wide by 20 metres high, and our render size for the project was 3120 x 1200 pixels, with a 256 pixel overlap between the two halves of the image.

“The Vioso module of Wings split the image into a multi-display, blending and warping the output of six high-output HD projectors with ease. We also used Vioso to create and edit the video content, building up an exact replica of the ‘mountain’ in 3D.

“The content was stored and played back using the Wings Engine media server, with the Wings Avio control protocol allowing secure and perfectly synchronised connection via MIDI to the show’s lighting-control desk. This meant that the video timeline was perfectly sync’d to the music and associated lighting cues, every step of the way.”

With an audience of around 950 people per night seated in a U-shaped amphitheatre exactly opposite the quarry wall, each show culminated in a spectacular climax that echoed the finale of Pink Floyd’s ‘The Wall’, with pieces of rock from the quarry appearing to break up and fall towards the stage and theatre.

Tobias Stumpfl, Commercial Director, AV Stumpfl, concludes: “From video editing to large-scale projection, interactivity and show control, our Wings platform does it all. With the support of local partners such as Preqbi AB and the superb creativity of customers like Blank, our technologies are delivering spectacular results that wow audiences all over the world.

“We congratulate everyone involved with the Puls concerts in Norway and look forward to many more exciting applications of Wings to come!”

Some useful links:

Facebook:
@AV.Stumpfl.Pro
@blank.no
@Preqbi-AB

More information about Preqbi AB can be found at www.preqbi.se.

About AV Stumpfl
AV Stumpfl is an award-winning Austrian company that designs, manufactures and markets a range of high-performance mobile and installation projection screens and multi-display and show control systems for professional and business applications. As a family business, its founders started the company out of a passion for the advancement of presentation and installation technologies. The product range is warranted for 24/7 usage. AV Stumpfl is located in Wallern, Austria, and is supported by a global network of distribution and service partners.
www.avstumpfl.com

Slamhammer and Martin Audio Step Up At All-Star Game Concert

Minneapolis, MN––The Target All-Star Concert was held at the TCF Bank Stadium on the University of Minnesota campus a few days before the 2014 Major League Baseball All-Star game.

Slamhammer Productions provided audio, staging and video for the sold-out show that featured Grammy Award winner Imagine Dragons and local hip-hop phenomenon Atmosphere playing to an enthusiastic crowd of over 30,000.

To get the depth and impact of coverage required, Slamhammer set up a Martin Audio loudspeaker system consisting of 16 W8LCs a side for the main hangs; 10 (stage right) and 14 W8LCs a side as outfill; a hang of 2 W8LMDs as center downfill; 4 W8LMs across the front lip of the stage for additional front fill, and 40 WSX subs ground-stacked in front of the stage. Two delay towers with 12 W8LM speakers each were set up 175 feet back in the audience.

Even though Slamhammer had done three smaller shows at TCF Bank Stadium, there were still particular challenges given the size and high profile nature of the event.

According to company President Peter Skujins, “We were faced with long throws of over 400 feet and were limited in terms of rigging capacity. The mobile stage we were using is a beautiful structure with a huge total capacity, but you eat that up pretty quick with multiple hangs weighing over 6400 lbs on the roof. We were also concerned about having a major sightline problem with the delay towers because it was a seated house.

“Fortunately, these all turned out to be non-issues because the W8LM is a very compact box and the Martin Audio system did what it’s supposed to do. It sounded great and everyone was really happy with the coverage and audio quality, including our client Major League Baseball who called the concert ‘a huge success.’”

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.

Thunder Audio Rolls and Roars with L-ACOUSTICS

Thunder Audio's Tony Villarreal (left) and Paul Owen with a few of their new L-ACOUSTICS K1 enclosures

Detroit/Nashville sound company purchases K1 system after taking K2 on Vampire Weekend tour

LIVONIA, Michigan — After putting a new K2 loudspeaker system through its paces – including a recent trek on Vampire Weekend’s North American tour leg – Thunder Audio, Inc. has expanded its inventory with a large-format K1 system from L-ACOUSTICS.

According to Thunder Audio Business Development Manager Greg Snyder, the company is currently taking delivery of 48 K1 enclosures, as well as bringing the rest of its total L-ACOUSTICS inventory up to 36 K2 and 24 KARA elements, 18 K1-SB and 34 SB28 subs, six ARCS II and 22 LA-RAK, each loaded with three LA8 amplified controllers. An additional 48 K2 are also on order for the first quarter of 2015.

“K1 has become the industry’s first choice for live audio reinforcement systems, but K2 is the reason we finally became a member of the L-ACOUSTICS family,” says Snyder. “It’s a stellar system for arena tours, like Vampire Weekend, as well as the perfect support box for K1 on larger stadium and festival shows. We are thrilled with the linearity in performance across L-ACOUSTICS’ entire product range and excited about the solutions that these systems will provide for our clients.”

Vampire Weekend performing on Thunder Audio's K2 system in Chicago

Client response has, indeed, been very favorable. Neil Heal, Vampire Weekend’s FOH engineer since late-2007, commented on his use of Thunder Audio’s K2 rig. “The typical configuration on our most recent American tour leg was left and right arrays of 14 K2, plus eight KARA outfills and four SB28 per side, all of which sounded fantastic. It seemed odd to be using so few subs, but more than that would have been overkill with K2, which is such a full range enclosure with a really nice usable low end. Vampire Weekend’s mix is all about vocal and instrumental clarity, and I could literally run the rig without subs in most arenas, but having just a few of them more than adequately filled out the low end.”

“We used K2 both indoors and outdoors, with arrays ranging between eight and 14 boxes per side, and I’m very impressed with the sonic consistency we got from night to night,” he continues. “K2′s ‘steerability’ with Panflex is also really nice in the event that Jonny [Winkler, Thunder Audio FOH systems engineer] had to hang the arrays near a glass wall or whatever; we could aim the top end away from it, which is great.”

Thunder Audio’s Winkler appreciates not only the fidelity of K2, but also the ease with which the system flies and strikes. “We flew the rig so fast each day that the lighting guys and carpenters were angry with me,” he laughs. “It takes longer to get the pins pre-set than it does to fly it, and that doesn’t even take that long. We have several other manufacturer’s boxes in our inventory here at Thunder Audio, and this is by far the fastest and easiest. I’ve flown an entire K2 rig totally by myself in less than four hours.”

Vampire Weekend heard via L-ACOUSTICS K2 at Chicago's UIC Pavilion

As for Heal, his only regret is that he didn’t have the system earlier. “The band was out on the road for 17 months and carried another PA for most of the tour because K2 simply didn’t exist when we started,” he says. “But I really prefer K2. It’s awesome. I’d love to have it every night, without a doubt. But it’ll be available on the next tour, and I’ll certainly take it out again. Plus, our festival stops this summer are on K1 mains with K2 outfills, which is just perfect.”

Thunder Audio Vice President Paul Owen sums up his investments by adding, “This was a huge undertaking by Tony [Villarreal, President] and I, and we had to take a lot into consideration before moving forward with K1 and K2: popularity, demand and, of course, availability. K1 is the first choice on the majority of riders that we handle and the predominant system when it comes to festivals. There’s no denying its sheer power and quality. We feel that K1 and K2 are our best venture to date for attracting new customers and facilitating old ones, and we’re very excited for what these systems can do for our clients and company’s future.”

For more info on Thunder Audio, visit www.thunderaudioinc.com.

L-ACOUSTICS is a leading innovator and manufacturer of high-performance loudspeakers, amplifiers and signal processing devices for touring and installed sound markets. Known around the globe for pioneering and championing the modern line array loudspeaker concept with V-DOSC, the company has received numerous accolades for its K1, K2, KUDO, KARA, KIVA, ARCS, XT coaxial loudspeaker systems and SB line of subwoofer enclosures, all powered and processed with the LA4 and LA8 amplified controllers in fulfillment of a “total system approach.” Product distribution and customer service for North America is handled by L-ACOUSTICS’ subsidiary in Oxnard, California.

# # #

Contact:
L-ACOUSTICS US
2201 Celsius Avenue, Unit E, Oxnard, CA 93030
Tel: 805.604.0577 / Fax: 805.604.0858
Email: info@l-acoustics-us.com / Web: www.l-acoustics.com

Over 1,400 of HARMAN’s Martin Professional Lighting Fixtures Provide Vehicle Lighting Across the 2014 North American International Auto Show

DETROIT, Michigan — The North American International Auto Show (NAIAS), better known as the Detroit Auto Show, is one of the largest automotive shows in North America and annually features many national and worldwide introductions from the world’s most renowned auto manufacturers. Perennially held at Detroit’s Cobo Center, the 2014 NAIAS showcased the industry’s latest innovations to more than 800,000 attendees over the course of nine days. As a critical component of the show’s experience, over 1,400 of HARMAN’s Martin Professional lighting fixtures were deployed by a number of leading production partners and lighting-provider Christie Lites across the entire show, including booths for Chrysler, Nissan, Infiniti, Ford, Lincoln, Acura, Volvo, and more.

Chrysler
Chris Wojcieszyn of Lighthaus Design teamed with Bruce Spillman, Onsite Lighting Designer, who oversaw the execution and focus for Chrysler’s 2014 NAIAS booth, to develop an elaborate lighting design for the booth which also featured Fiat, Dodge, Jeep, Ram, and SRT. Wojcieszyn used 270 of Martin’s MAC 2000 XB Wash lights with super wide lenses to create an even white wash across the booth’s exterior, which consisted of large flat white walls on three sides. Spillman and Wojcieszyn also deployed 81 of Martin’s Viper Wash DX luminaires on all the featured vehicles on revolving platforms across the booth. “The new internal barn-door setting and shuttering system on the DX washes are really easy to work with,” commented Wojcieszyn. “It allows you to manipulate and shape the light exactly how you need it without compromising the power and amount of light you are getting.”

Acura
Chris Wojcieszyn was also the Principal Lighting Designer for the 2014 Acura booth, which featured 138 of Martin’s MAC Aura Wash lights. The booth featured two suspended rings that twist throughout the entire space, one made of silver and the other wood to represent man and machine. “At a previous show we used the Viper DXs to wash over the rings but it proved to be a bit too strong, which is really a credit to the design of the fixtures,” explained Wojcieszyn. “I switched to the MAC Auras for the Detroit show and I was able to mix the color effectively and really get the warmth I was looking for out of the rings.”

Nissan
Principal lighting design for the Nissan booth was developed by Chris Medvitz of Lightswitch and included 52 Martin Viper Wash DX fixtures to light the key vehicles for press events and reveals. Additionally, Medvitz used 90 Martin MAC 2000 Wash XBs to light the booth’s signature architectural feature or ‘halo’. “As an elliptical cantilevered sculptural element dominating the booth, the ‘halo’ was animated with light to enhance and extend the audience experience of the audio/visual content from a giant curved LED video screen also featured on the booth,” explained Medvitz. “The MAC 2000 fixtures were configured with buxom lenses as the throw was only a few feet away, but the bright light paired with the Martin color mixing system bathed the ‘halo’ in a vibrant and robust ‘Nissan Red’ when not animated.”

Infiniti
Medvitz also served as the principal lighting designer behind the 2014 Infiniti booth where he deployed 10 Martin Viper Wash DXs and 84 of Martin’s MAC Aura fixtures to provide light for VIP lounges, highlight corporate logos, add color and movement to the press event, and even light a DJ featured on the booth. Additionally, Medvitz used 24 MAC Auras on a circular truss to light the new Infiniti Q50 Eau Rogue concept car. “The Auras created an extremely smooth and soft wash for the concept vehicle that allowed us to fine tune color and color temperature to make the red paint on the vehicle appear the way our clients wanted both on camera and in person,” commented Medvitz.

Commenting on his choice of the Viper Wash DXs for the Nissan and Infiniti booths, Medvitz said, “I’m a big fan of the Viper DX! They have great output but don’t have the excessive weight or size of other wash fixtures. The beam shaping feature on the DX allowed us to more precisely light the vehicles for camera–the ability to shape the light on the cars and control spill proved to be an invaluable asset.”

Ford and Lincoln
Lighting Designer Jonny Milmer of Imagination used 166 Martin Professional MAC Aura, 12 MAC 700 Wash and four MAC III fixtures for lighting of the feature vehicles on both the Ford and Lincoln booths. For Ford, Milmer used the MAC Aura to light both the featured vehicles and the key interactive display due to its light weight, speed and light versatility. “We needed a fitting that could match the daylight lamp from the Static Daylight Pars while creating full color sequences to help tell the design and production story,” explained Milmer.

For the Lincoln booth, Milmer chose the MAC Auras to light the feature vehicle on the center revolve stage due to its clarity and the consistent color temperature it produces. “Our clients take the car colors very seriously and the color of the lighting is a crucial part of getting the color of the car right for the designers,” commented Milmer. “For us, the Martin MAC Aura is the only fitting that allows us the consistency of color that enables us to match the colors we need perfectly every time without creating colored reflections.”

Milmer also used Martin’s MAC III for gobo projection to create interesting animation and morphing effects across the booths. Additionally, Martin’s MAC 700 Wash lights were deployed to help light the Mustang display area that consisted of a large interactive presentation. “We simply used the MAC 700s to provide a bit more punch and drama in this area of the booth,” stated Milmer. “These fixtures are very compact for their output and they were able to fit comfortably on our custom truss.”

Volvo
Developed by Robert Cangemi, Principal Lighting Designer of Cangemi Design, the lighting design for Volvo’s 2014 NAIAS booth featured 72 of Martin Professional’s MAC Auras, 16 MAC III Performances, and 12 MAC Vipers. As a crucial element of the design, Cangemi relied on Martin’s MAC Aura to match the color temperatures of the daylight Par fixtures used on the cars and ensure the feature vehicles sparkled. “In my opinion the Auras are the single best LED moving light released in a long time,” stated Cangemi. “I always use them in color calibration mode which renders an amazing clean cool open white. Also, I can match other daylight products with a fraction of the weight and power while the zoom range and color mixing is incredible.”

Commenting on the reliability of Martin’s lighting fixtures, Cangemi said, “Booth maintenance was a breeze as the fixture worked and continued to work despite the harsh environment of a trade show that required continuous lighting for upwards of 14 hours a day. Whether in the same static position, running a slow moving effect continuously, the Martin fixtures did not let us down.”

Mercedes and Porsche
Additionally, Martin’s MAC Viper Profile, MAC Viper Wash DX and MAC 2000 Wash XB fixtures were deployed on the Mercedes booth for feature car lighting. The Porsche booth also featured Martin’s MAC 2000 Wash luminaires.

Production Companies:
SEIBO (www.seibollc.com) – Honda, Acura, Nissan, Infiniti, Chrysler
Creative Technology (www.ctus.com) – Kia, Jaguar, Land Rover
2XD (www.2xdproductions.com) – Volvo, Mercedes, Porsche
Imagination (www.imagination.com) Ford, Lincoln

Vendor:
Christie Lites (www.christielites.com)

As a world leader in the creation of dynamic lighting solutions for the entertainment, architectural, and commercial sectors, Martin lighting and video systems are renowned the world over. Martin also offers a range of advanced lighting controllers and media servers, as well as a complete line of smoke machines as a complement to intelligent lighting. Martin operates the industry’s most complete and capable distributor network with local partners in nearly 100 countries. Founded in 1987 and based in Aarhus, Denmark, Martin is the lighting division of global infotainment and audio company HARMAN International Industries. For more information please visit: http://www.martin.com.

HARMAN 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 14,800 people across the Americas, Europe, and Asia and reported sales of $4.7 billion for the last twelve months ended December 31, 2013.

HARMAN’s JBL Professional and Crown Uncork Extraordinary Sound at BottleRock Napa Valley

NAPA, California — Billing itself as the Ultimate Celebration, the 3-day BottleRock Napa Valley Festival offered the best in music, wine, beer and gourmet food, accompanied by stellar sound courtesy of HARMAN Professional audio systems featuring JBL’s VTX Series line array loudspeakers and Crown I-Tech HD Series amplifiers. The festival, which took place on three stages at the Napa Valley Expo, hosted an unusually diverse lineup including Outkast, Eric Church, The Cure, Weezer, Heart, The Fray, Barenaked Ladies, Thee Oh Sees, and more than 70 other acts.

Camarillo, California-based full-service event production company Delicate Productions provided sound, light and video for the event. It was the second year Delicate got the exclusive to handle all the A/V and lighting setup for all three stages—and the first year the company used JBL VTX line arrays.

BottleRock is held right in the actual heart of the city of Napa, which meant the stages were 200 feet from houses in every direction. On top of that, the sound system was not allowed to exceed an SPL of 105dB C-weighted, so Delicate needed loudspeakers that could meet these requirements yet deliver the high-impact, full-range sound that the artists and concertgoers expect at an outdoor festival.

Delicate Productions’ President Jason Alt and his crew had previously heard a VTX demo at JBL’s Northridge, California headquarters, liked what they heard and thought the VTX Series would be well suited for the requirements of the festival. “We had never used the VTX loudspeakers before, but we had complete confidence after hearing them for ourselves at Northridge,” Alt said.

For each of the three BottleRock stages, Delicate hung nine JBL VTX V20 line array elements and six S28 subwoofers on each side of the stage, along with 12 F12 loudspeakers for out fill and six F15 loudspeakers for down fill.

Amplification was provided by two Crown I-Tech 12000 HD VRacks for the subwoofers, three I-Tech 4×3500 HD VRacks for monitor mixes, out fills and stage subs, and two I-Tech 4×3500 HD VRacks to power the V20 loudspeakers. The amps were linked to the VTX loudspeakers via JBL’s HiQnet Performance Manager™ system setup, calibration and control software.

“The VTX line arrays, subwoofers and loudspeakers proved to be exactly what was needed for the application,” Alt noted. “The VTX’s acoustic energy was focused in the right direction, with the correct directivity being delivered forward to the audience and with very little spill to the surrounding neighborhood.”

Alt was equally impressed by the VTX’s sound quality, particularly the accuracy and resolution of the D2 dual-diaphragm high-frequency compression driver and the smoothness of the transition from the midrange to the upper-midrange and highs. “The V20 is really impressive and the fidelity is second to none, including any of the highest-end boxes that are out there,” he said. “The way the V20 pairs with the subwoofer, it’s all elegantly designed.”

Alt noted that he was “really blown away” by the entire HARMAN package for the way the synergy between the VTX loudspeakers, I-Tech HD Series amps and HiQnet Performance Manager software enabled the crew to set up the entire system faster and more accurately and optimize the performance of the loudspeakers and amps to a greater degree than in previous events. “Looking at the way JBL, Crown and Performance Manager tied together, it’s apparent that HARMAN has thought out the process very well.”

For more information on Delicate Productions, please visit www.delicate.com

HARMAN designs, manufactures and markets premier audio, visual, infotainment and integrated control solutions for the automotive, consumer and professional markets. With 15 leading brands, including AKG®, Harman Kardon®, Infinity®, JBL®, Lexicon® and Mark Levinson ®, the Company is admired by audiophiles, musicians and the entertainment venues where they perform. More than 25 million automobiles on the road today are equipped with HARMAN audio and infotainment systems. HARMAN has a global workforce of 15,200 people and reported sales of $5.1 billion for the last 12 months ended March 31, 2014.

Martin Audio MLA Continues Hyde Park Sound Evolution At BST

Proving last year that London’s controversial Hyde Park festival site could be uniquely protected from noise leakage into the surrounding neighborhood by deploying Martin Audio’s award-winning MLA technology, promoters AEG Live adopted a similar solution for this year’s Barclaycard presents British Summer Time Hyde Park festival—but with significant enhancements.

While Capital Sound again deployed MLA and MLA Compact to guarantee coherent site coverage, Martin Audio’s R&D Director Jason Baird, was determined that new optimizations would enable them to eke out as much as an additional 3dB at front-of-house without increasing offsite pollution.

As a result, 102dB(A) was achieved for McBusted, with 73dB(A) recorded offsite, comfortably within the maximum allowable of 75dB(A), while both Tom Jones (during his louder numbers) and Black Sabbath nudged 103dB(A).

Baird explained that the journey to accomplish this had begun three months earlier; with the concept tested and proven on the Glastonbury Festival delay rig the week before.

“We conducted the propagation tests based on what we learned last time around,” he said. One of the key offsite measurement points identified by both Westminster Council and acoustics specialists Vanguardia at Hyde Park was on top of flats in Mayfair’s nearby Upper Brook Street. “When I visited the property last year, I was able to look at the complete spectrum of the signal,” says Baird. “You could hear there was only LF and low mid that was contributing to the A-weighted measurements and we realized that if we could reduce that frequency band we could have a better differential.”

And so his R&D team set to work on the optimization routines across the full frequency range to improve the differential between on- and off-site levels without extending latency––and this trial optimization will in time feature in new data firmware. While Baird maintains that testing will remain ongoing he says the success at Glastonbury gave him the confidence to deploy it on additional arrays in Hyde Park including house left side hang and the two delays nearest to Park Lane.

He describes these early tests and the additional increase of around 2-3dB in max FOH levels over the previous year as “encouraging and significant”.

Capital Sound’s Technical Manager and Systems Designer, Ian Colville, confirmed, “It all worked well and there were no issues with the three arrays we used the new optimization algorithm on.”

His site design replicated last year’s when the stage was reoriented through 30° to point it away from sensitive offsite areas, and included 10 delay towers (in two rings of four plus one ring of two). However, there was one exception. “We dropped a delay position [in Ring 3] which didn’t need to be there because the design of the back of the field changed,” he said.

For the main PA, Capital deployed two hangs of 16 x MLA and 1 x MLD Downfill per side, with 12 x MLA and 1 x MLD Downfill for the sidefills. The sub array consisted of 21 x MLX in a broadside cardioid array, with a further 11 enclosures back facing.

The three delay rings comprised between seven and nine MLA element hangs (supported by MLD Downfill and MLX subs). Ring 3 featured eight MLA Compacts. These were set at distances from the stage of 295, 524 and 688 ft. (for the MLA Compacts). Distance from FOH to stage was 165 ft.

Capital and Martin Audio deployed a team of technical heavyweights, including Chris Pyne, who handles Martin Audio product support for SE Asia and has worked closely with Capital since piloting Kylie Minogue’s mix in the 1990s; Capital had Dave Roden babysitting consoles and the accomplished Toby Donovan once again acting as system engineer while Martin Connolly was the account manager.

With FOH engineers no longer worrying about trading offsite noise pollution with audience sound levels, it meant they could really focus on the mix they wanted and at the same time appreciate the musicality of the system.

One visiting sound engineer Chris Madden (working with Little Mix), had nothing but positive comments. “I used the Martin MLA system about two years ago with Jessie J and I enjoyed it then,” he said. “But I think it was even better this time. It’s a very interesting and remarkable piece of equipment …I didn’t EQ it at all at BST and it sounded great.”

Matteo Cifelli, FOH engineer for Tom Jones, who performed on the final Sunday, was equally effusive. “I was very happy with the results we achieved, the mix immediately sounded just as it was conceived,” he says. “This is the sign of a good cabinet, and also of a well tuned system.”

“I was very pleased with the purity and musicality of the cabinet. I also appreciated the consistency in frequency response at different levels. The sound image was among the best I have ever heard on a large system. Even mixing off center, I could hear all the reverbs and details of my mix clearly and the presence and sweetness on the vocals was great, in your face and never harsh.”

( left to right): Martin Audio’s Jason Baird and Chris Pyne; Capital Sound’s Ian Colville

Summing up Jason Baird says, “What FOH engineers want at festivals is plenty of headroom and not to worry about offsite restrictions. Having reduced the low mid and LF spectrum this year, we’ve been able to further ensure this, and that means the power, depth and definition of the system can also really shine too.”

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.

Johnny D’s Serves Up A Superior Sound Experience with HARMAN’s Soundcraft Si Expression 3

SOMERVILLE, Massachusetts – For a 300-seat nightclub that is 45 years old and doubles as a restaurant in David Square, Somerville, Massachusetts, Johnny D’s required a renovation of its outdated sound system. While MJ Audio integrated the front end of the new system, which features HARMAN’s Crown amplifiers and BSS signal processors, Technical Manager Dana Westover has installed a Soundcraft Si Expression 3 to improve upon its existing analog consoles.

Given the popular area in which Johnny D’s is situated, its stage enjoys many touring bands and guest engineers in addition to local artists. Therefore, Westover needed a reliable console that is not only within the venue’s budget and able to accommodate the various performers, but also one that is user-friendly for the various engineers working at the club.

“We’ve been running analog mixers up until now, and have had a slow transition towards digital technology, because we get a lot of guest engineers who come from the analog world,” said Westover. “However, the Si Expression 3 is perfect as an upgrade, because it helps people transition to digital due to its logical layout and ease of use. For example, we had a guest engineer who has never worked on a Soundcraft board before, and within 15 minutes, he was ready for the show.”

The room housing the new equipment contains no parallel surfaces, thus leading to unique acoustics and an intimate layout of the venue. With a Soundcraft Si Expression 3 console, a sound engineer can ensure that guests enjoy the most distinctive sounding shows. In addition, FaderGlowTM illumination of the faders prevents any unwanted mistakes in dark club environments that might hamper the audio experience.

“I think the audio quality is very solid, especially considering the price of the console,” said Westover. “I’m very happy that we have a great sounding venue, and now we have a great sounding board that any traveling engineer can do well with. I especially like how FaderGlow allows me to identify everything clearly, but I can also adjust the intensity of the LED’s depending on the lighting of the venue.”

HARMAN designs, manufactures and markets premier audio, visual, infotainment and integrated control solutions for the automotive, consumer and professional markets. With 15 leading brands, including AKG®, Harman Kardon®, Infinity®, JBL®, Lexicon® and Mark Levinson ®, the Company is admired by audiophiles, musicians and the entertainment venues where they perform. More than 25 million automobiles on the road today are equipped with HARMAN audio and infotainment systems. HARMAN has a global workforce of 15,200 people and reported sales of $5.1 billion for the last 12 months ended March 31, 2014.

Rui Da Silva invests in a Prism Sound Lyra 2 Audio Interface

Rui Da Silva, writer of international number one single Touch Me amongst many other diverse projects, describes himself as a Producer, Engineer, Beatmaker, Remixer, Writer, DJ and Programmer. He can now add Lyra 2 owner to the list as well, having recently bought one of the audio interface units from Prism Sound.

“I first heard about Prism Sound’s Lyra 2 through a magazine article,” he says. “I’ve been a longtime user of the company’s Orpheus audio interface and have also used the Dream AD-2 converter in the past. The Lyra 2 integrates perfectly in my new setup. Studio space is at a premium and while I still use the Orpheus in my studio in Windsor, Lyra 2 is the right fit for my central London studio and for travelling work. It has sufficient inputs and outputs to be able to run most of my sessions and has a small enough footprint for me to just put it in my backpack.”

For Da Silva, this makes Lyra 2 a ubiquitous tool in his kitbag. He not only used the unit to write, record and mix all of the debut album from Lisbon Kid, but also to record Chloe Howl and much of his latest solo productions and remixes.

“In fact, you can hear it on every single release I have put out in this past year,” he says.

The Lyra family of audio interfaces is proving to be an extremely popular one for Prism Sound. Built from a design brief that demanded Prism Sound quality at an even more accessible price point, Lyra has the same no-compromise analogue front and back ends as its bigger brother Orpheus, with the same fully-balanced-throughout architecture and the same isolation barriers protecting the analogue from digital and computer interference. And it achieves all this in a 2.1kg, 2/3 width, 1U 19in rack mountable unit.

“It has also allowed me to not have a mixer in the studio as I use the Lyra Control Panel instead,” comments Da Silva. “And it allows me to give a separate headphone feed to the singers when we are doing vocals. The latency — even if it is not an absolute zero — is very workable for almost every scenario.”

Da Silva adds that Prism Sound support has been brilliant and staff are ‘a pleasure to deal with’. But it’s the Lyra 2′s portability along with that ‘Prism Sound’ that is the real advantage for him.

“I have to make a long trip to Portugal this year to record some new material for Lisbon Kid and, of course, the Lyra 2 will be in the bag with me,” he says.

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About Prism Sound
Founded in 1987, Prism Sound manufacture high-quality professional digital audio equipment for the International broadcast, film, music production, manufacturing and telecommunications sectors. The company’s product range includes the Prism ADA-8XR precision 8-channel converter unit, which is regularly used for music and film soundtrack projects by clients such as EMI Abbey Road, BBC, Sony, Lucasfilm and Walt Disney. Prism Sound also manufactures a range of audio test and measurement products, including the de facto standard DSA-1 handheld digital audio generator/analyser and the dScope Series III audio analyser system.

For more information: www.prismsound.com

Music Students Step Up To CAD Headphones


Understanding the need for professional equipment when learning how to play and record musical instruments and vocals, CAD Audio recently donated a number of MH510 studio headphones to music students in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Aaron O’Keefe, a private music instructor and owner/co-owner of the Loveland, Maineville and Lebanon music academies, describes how his students got involved with CAD.

“Carmen Mark ‘Squiggy’ DiGiacomo of the MAD Consulting Group contacted us about the manufacturer’s tent at the Rock On The Range Festival in Columbus where music product and audio manufacturers demonstrate their products. CAD Audio was one of those companies and they were good enough to donate a number of their professional headphones to our music school programs.”

Aaron’s students typically range from age six to 16 and he personally teaches piano, guitar, voice, drums, bass, double bass, vibraphone, mandolin and ukulele, to name a few. “We’ll usually take a song like ‘Heart Shaped Box’ by Nirvana or ‘Sober’ by Tool,” he explains. “I’ll teach the song individually to my drum, guitar, bass player and voice students, we’ll put them together in a band, rehearse the song, then actually record and videotape the final performance.

“These CAD headphones are going to be used in countless studio recordings, Aaron continues, “because too often, the kids have cheap, walkman-style phones that don’t do the job. The Sessions MH510s are perfect for the studio because they have a closed-back design and there isn’t any bleed through into the microphones, which is really important. Plus the audio quality is exceptional. We’re using them extensively for tracking and overdubs, which is great because they’ll eventually appear in our videos. They’re the best headphones we’ve ever used.”

Knowing that his students’ version of Tool’s “46 and 2” bit.ly/1rbMKFv on YouTube has had well over six million, four hundred thousand views to this point, appearing in their videos has added significance for supporting manufacturers such as Zildjian, Jackson, ESP, Dunlop, Kramer and CAD Audio.

Describing the adventure of taking young music students to a night out at Rock on the Range, Aaron concludes, “Guns ‘N’ Roses was headlining and the kids got to meet members of Killswitch Engage, Asking Alexandria and Matt Pinfield of MTV.

“Taking eight kids to a Metal show was a little stressful because I had a nine, ten and a few fifteen year olds and I didn’t have any other chaperones which was crazy. But it worked out fine, the kids got equipment, met their heroes and the nine year old, Eva, called it ‘the best trip ever.’”

For more information about CAD Audio, please call 800.762.9266 or visit www.cadaudio.com.

Visual Unity Confirms its Worldwide Ambitions at IBC 2014

Leading OTT solutions provider Visual Unity will use the IBC 2014 platform (14.F34) to unveil the latest versions of its Award-winning vuMedia™ multiscreen platform and vuEasy™ Online Video Platform.

One of the most important changes will be the introduction of a raft of new languages to vuEasy™’s administrator user interface, including Chinese, Arabic, Spanish and Russian. This significant upgrade broadens vuEasy™’s international appeal and reinforces Visual Unity’s plans to expand sales into new geographic territories.

“Having recently secured an investment of 7.2 million US$ (5.2 million Euros) from 3TS Capital Partners, we are now able to support the growth of an international customer base for both vuMedia™ and vuEasy™,” says Visual Unity’s CEO Tomas Petru. “Our goal is to be the leading provider of OTT and multiscreen solutions and 3TS’s investment is already helping us to achieve this ambition by enabling us focus on product development and reach previously untapped markets.”

Introduced in 2011 and the winner of the 2012 ConnectedWorld.TV Award for the Best Use of Online Video by a Non-Broadcaster, Visual Unity’s flagship vuMedia™ is an end-to-end OTT platform that allows broadcasters and content owners to control how their brand and assets are managed, delivered and monetized in the multiscreen environment. Highly scalable and flexible, vuMedia™ delivers a cutting-edge live viewing experience on the web or any mobile or connected device. vuMedia™ also enables comprehensive Video on Demand services, social network integration and secures the distribution of content – all of which can be deployed into existing workflows and business processes.

In recent months, Visual Unity has upgraded vuMedia™ so that it now features an improved modular architecture and enhanced API integration for faster OTT integration into existing infrastructures. There is also support for Live Time-Shifting so that subscribers can rewind while watching live broadcasts. This user experience is enhanced with the inclusion of a Timeline Thumbnail Preview (vuMedia™ TTP), which makes it faster and easier for consumers to navigate within streamed content.

vuMedia™ is now fully integrated with Visual Unity’s vuEasy™Cloud-based service that allows Enterprise and Media companies to manage and monetize their audio, video and image libraries. vuEasy™ supports live streaming of up to 4K video and allows graphics and other audio and visual material to be associated with video or audio files, for brand promotion or to generate advertising revenue. Quick and easy to use, vuEasy™ alleviates the need for businesses to build an expensive, in-house and resource-intensive media library, by allowing them to publish their content online.

At IBC 2014, Visual Unity will show a new, white label version of vuEasy™ that gives partners the opportunity to sell the product under their own brand by changing the colours and logos on the user interface. Also new is Multi-level account administration, which allows Visual Unity customers to collaborate on OTT projects, share resources or limit access to specific parts of vuEasy™ to dedicated groups. It also allows vuEasy™ to support different re-seller and seller models and relationships.

Alongside support of live streams that can easily be added into an OTT trough, vuEasy™ also allows customers to record their own live events, include them in their content management systems and automatically published them on VoD portals.

Since first launching its vuMedia platform, Visual Unity has supported video delivery to iOS and Android devices. At IBC 2014, the comany will show a new, native application for iOS devices that enables delivery of VoDs that are DRM protected. This upgrade, which supports Widevine DRM in iOS applications, will give end users and even better experience.

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About Visual Unity

Visual Unity is a global provider of video and digital media solutions, enabling our clients to deliver premium quality video content. Our clients can measure, analyze and optimize their libraries over time and achieve optimal business success. Our platform capabilities inspire our clients to deploy their assets across multiple devices, screens, and media formats. Visual Unity helps clients manage, deliver and monetize their digital content.

Visual Unity is a Multiscreen Solution Provider, bridging the gap between linear broadcast, IT and IPTV to help clients reach and engage audiences on any screen. Since 1991, the team has been designing and delivering turnkey broadcast and complex multiscreen solutions worldwide – from HD outside Broadcast (OB) vehicles and major playout facilities to live internet streaming and Video on Demand services. Visual Unity’s award-winning vuMediaTM platform helps broadcasters and content owners control how their brand and assets are managed and monetized in the multiscreen environment. vuMediaTM is a highly scalable and a modular architecture, delivering a cutting-edge live viewing experience on the web or any mobile or connected device – all of which can be deployed into existing workflows and business processes.

Visual Unity is based in Prague, London, Cologne, Moscow, Bratislava, Belgrade, Nairobi and Dubai. For further information, please visit www.visualunity.com

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