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Archive of the Large Venue Category

Historic Italian Venue Gets Martin Audio MLA Upgrade

Paul McCartney’s Out There tour recently landed in the Arena di Verona, the historic amphitheatre that has provided entertainment spectacles for the people of Verona for thousands of years.

Touring logistics meant that Paul McCartney’s regular PA system could not make the Verona date, so local supplier Amandla Productions stepped in to provide a Martin Audio MLA system, supported by All Access, the owners of Italy’s largest MLA rig.

Paul McCartney’s long-standing FOH engineer Paul ‘Pab’ Boothroyd was at the helm for the show, ably assisted by his touring system tech Chris Nicholls. Both were impressed by the system’s performance.

“I had heard a lot of good things about the new Martin Audio rig and was happy to use it for this show,” said Boothroyd. “Everybody was really happy with the show, the coverage was great and the detail and clarity in the system made it an enjoyable show to mix. It’s great to see Martin Audio right at the front of new design––the first systems I mixed on were Martin Audio Philishave rigs and that powerful musical sound got me going in my career.”

All Access system tech, Red, was able to demonstrate the unique control of the MLA to Chris Nicholls: “The way the system was able to cover a steeply raked venue with relatively few boxes was very impressive. It didn’t look as though they had enough curve on the array, and we gave them a really tight weight target to hit so they couldn’t add more boxes; yet the flatter array shape was great for the throw required. With a quick adjustment in the software they had the system covering great right up to the back seat without adjusting its angles and that’s something I’ve never heard a system do before.”

The system deployed in Verona included 12 MLA per side for main hangs, six MLA per side for out hangs and two MLD in the orchestra pit for front fill. The out hangs were particularly challenging, as they had to be flown from the ancient stepped seating within a scaffolding structure. The manageable weight and size of the MLA cabinets made this difficult maneuver possible. “The MLA is less than 194 lbs,” reported Red, “and being based around horn loaded 12’s meant we could physically lift the cabinets and fit them in between the steps and the scaffold structure; anything heavier or taller simply would not have been possible in the space available.”

The Out There tour continued on to Vienna before returning for a run of shows in America. “We’re back to our normal touring PA after this show but I’ll look forward to mixing on MLA again––this rig is right up there with the best in the world,” said Boothroyd at the end of the spectacular two and a half hour set that featured a huge selection of songs from the McCartney, Wings and Beatles back catalogue.

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

Iconyx Tames a Legendary Landmark

Beijing, China – October 2013… An icon of the modern People’s Republic of China, Beijing’s Great Hall of the People is truly a towering architectural achievement. The 1.9million square foot (171,800 sq m) hall, overlooking the city’s Tiananmen Square, was originally constructed in just 10 months, officially opening in September 1959 to mark the 10th anniversary of the PRC. Designed by Zhang Bo, it has since become famous worldwide as the home of the National People’s Congress.

Most recently, the Great Hall was once again on the global stage as the historical 12th National People’s Congress convened in March. But as the world watched Xi Jinping become the new president of the People’s Republic, a small group of audio technicians and specialists were busy ensuring that a very discreet, very special audio system was helping delegates to hear every moment with perfect clarity.

Renkus-Heinz Iconyx digitally steerable column arrays now form the backbone of the sound reinforcement systems within the iconic building. Commissioned by the Management Office of The Great Hall of People and designed by China’s Radio, Film & TV Design and Research Institute (RFT), the new system takes in six large conference rooms and, most impressively, the Great Hall’s famous and striking conference auditorium.

The high-profile, high-pressure project offered a unique set of challenges for contractor Beijing Zhongdahuatang Technology Co Ltd., particularly the Great Hall’s massive conference auditorium. The circular chamber can accommodate an audience of thousands, measuring approximately 130 ft (40 m) in diameter, with a 33 foot (10 m) ceiling. Not surprisingly, the room’s acoustics are less than ideal. As a Beijing Zhongdahuatang Technology Co Ltd. spokesperson explains, “the auditorium has a very difficult acoustical environment, with reverberation problems and reflections.”

With its elaborate and ornate decor recognizable by billions, the room’s aesthetics were also a foregone conclusion. The room would require a system that could deliver clear speech intelligibility and flawless coverage while remaining virtually invisible to onlookers.

A single pair of Renkus-Heinz Iconyx IC32-R-II column arrays provides the ideal solution. Installed to the far left and right side of the Chairman’s position, each column is made up of arrays of coaxial transducers, each with its own triple tweeter array. The Iconyx beam steering technology makes it possible to achieve even coverage in even the most problematic spaces by focusing sound where it needs to be, and away from reflective surfaces.

“The Iconyx IC32-R-II columns now provide consistent SPL wherever an audience member might be, whether they are in the front of the hall, the middle or at the back of the auditorium,” reports Beijing Zhongdahuatang Technology Co Ltd. “Even though the auditorium has such a difficult environment, the Iconyx beam steering technology covers the whole auditorium with evenly distributed sound while avoiding the walls, the ceiling and delegate microphones.”

Nor have the IC32-R-II columns infringed upon the all-important décor. According the technical team, “the thin cabinet design makes the columns easy to conceal within an installation – you hardly notice that there is a column speaker there.”

Iconyx technology has been deployed elsewhere throughout the complex, including the six smaller conference rooms, each measuring 1000 s.f (300 sq-m) seating 90 people. Each room has been equipped with two IC8-R-II columns, concealed within the marble walls to once again ensure the most discreet solution possible. Despite the highly reflective atmosphere within each of the spaces, the Iconyx columns are successfully delivering clear speech in every area.

The completed system is a triumph for the team at Beijing Zhongdahuatang Technology Co Ltd., and for Iconyx technology, solving one of the toughest acoustic environments in one of the highest profile buildings in the world. And while that success will be obvious to all who hear the system in action, the loudspeakers themselves will remain out of sight.

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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.

KanexPro Introduces an Array of High Performance HDBaseT® Matrix Switchers

Brea, California – October 15th, 2013. KanexPro is proud to announce an entire new array of HDBaseT matrix switchers engineered to work with broader range of environments such as commercial A/V projects smart residential applications such as connected homes.

These high-performance matrix switchers are fast, dependable and rely on long distance transmission of HDMI video, audio, and bidirectional control signals over a single twisted pair cable using HDBaseT technology to integrate in the audio-video switching world.

Fully compatible with signal resolutions up to 1080p/60 or 1920×1200 and supports HDMI specification features including data rates up to 6.75 Gbps, Deep Color up to 12-bit, 3D, HD lossless audio formats, and CEC.

HDBaseT® is here to stay and with most of our integrators today that we talk to, they want a reliable, high-performance solution for their clients when routing and extending HDMI signals over category cables says; David Sommars, Business Development manager for KanexPro. This led us to make a pre-configured, custom HDMI to HDBaseT matrix with inputs and outputs ranging from 4×4 up to 32×32 I/O’s. With integrated signal processing power, and HDCP management built-in, KanexPro can now offer a value-based solution to all A/V system integrators and dealers looking for a high-performance matrix routing.

The HDBaseT matrix features:

• Ultra-fast switching with up to 32×32
• 4×4 matrix receivers powered over Ethernet (PoE)
• Dedicated audio zones for digital and stereo audio
• Audio extractor built-in on 4×4 matrix
• Supports Cat5e lengths up to 230 feet (70m)
• Integrated signal processing
• Signal re-clocking & equalizer built-in
• Advanced HDCP & EDID management
• Built-in HDCP engine for continuous encryption
• Hot swappable design
• Illuminated buttons
• Front panel LCD
• Front panel security lock
• IR, TCP/IP & RS-232 control
• Up to 9 global presets
• Rack-mountable aluminum enclosure
• Dual-Internal power supply (100Volt~240Volt AC, 50/60Hz)
• Backed by KanexPro’s 3-Year full parts & labor warranty

About KanexPro

Leveraging our core strength in professional A/V products, KanexPro carries a complete selection of A/V connectivity needs. When planning digital installations you will find that we carry a broad line of A/V connectivity products enabling you to broadcast, extend, split, or multiply HD signal transmissions; simply and cost-effectively. KanexPro is a registered trademark. All other trademarks and registered trademarks mentioned herein are the property of their respective owners.

HDMI, DVI, HDBaseT, Digital Audio, HDCP

Extron Announces Two Input XTP Wallplate Transmitter for Digital and Analog Signals

Extron Electronics is pleased to introduce the XTP T UWP 302, a two-input XTP wallplate transmitter that provides the convenience of connecting local source devices at a wall or other locations including a lectern or floor box. This XTP transmitter mounts into a standard three-gang junction box, and sends HDMI or RGBHV video, audio, and control up to 330 feet (100 meters) over a single CATx cable. It is HDCP-compliant and supports computer-video to 1920×1200, including HDTV 1080p/60 Deep Color and 2K. For simplified integration, the XTP T UWP 302 features automatic switching between inputs with selectable prioritization, and can be powered over the same CATx cable. The XTP T UWP 302 is designed for use in XTP Systems for signal distribution and long-distance transmission between remote endpoints. more

Iconyx Makes it Clear for Knollwood Baptist Church

Winston, Salem, NC – October 2013… In February of 1957, a group of about 80 faithful founded Knollwood Baptist Church, meeting at a local funeral hall until their first chapel was completed in July. More than half a century later, Knollwood’s congregation numbers in the thousands, and their 1000-seat sanctuary offers multiple services each week.

The sanctuary’s modernistic design is truly impressive, with its soaring peaked ceilings, abundant glass, and polished surfaces. But that same design has long been problematic for the church’s technical staff, who have struggled to achieve intelligibility and even coverage in the hall. As Dan Wood, President of High Point, NC-based Church Interiors Audio Video (CIAv) explains, the sanctuary’s recent renovation was an ideal opportunity to finally tackle the audio issues.

“It’s a beautiful space, but very challenging acoustically, and the original sound system just couldn’t provide adequate coverage,” says Wood. “Church Interiors was undertaking a major renovation, and it was a perfect time to rethink their audio system.”

The room’s airy, open architecture presented some significant challenges — particularly the chancel area’s wide design. “The chancel platform extends far into the room, and there was no possibility to hang an array or cluster without impacting line of sight,” says Wood. “Our only viable option was to locate the speakers behind all the open microphones — there was simply no other place to put them.

Consistent coverage was another major concern. Areas on the room’s extremities and up in the balcony suffered from poor intelligibility. Since the balcony is also home to the house mix position, this was particularly important to address.

With no option to substantially alter the room’s architectural and acoustical character, the solution clearly had to be found within the audio system design. With this in mind, CIAv selected Renkus-Heinz Iconyx digitally steered column array loudspeakers, placing a single IC24-R-II on either side of the chancel platform.

“The Iconyx allowed us to create multiple sound beams and steer them to the seats on the floor and balcony levels, while steering them away from the walls and windows and other reflective surfaces,” says Wood. “It also enabled us to provide focused coverage to the mix position up in the balcony.”

Wood reports response to the new system has been overwhelmingly positive. “With just two Iconyx columns, we’ve got consistent coverage and intelligibility everywhere in the room.”

 

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

Simonds Stadium Installs Australia’s First Ever HARMAN BSS Audio Soundweb London BLU-805 AVB System

GEELONG, Australia – Simonds Stadium has become one of the biggest and most successful multi-purpose venues in Australia’s Victoria Region. The Stadium’s third stage of renovation was recently completed with the addition of a new southern grandstand, increasing seating capacity to over 35,000. During the renovation Simonds Stadium was outfitted with a HARMAN BSS Audio Soundweb London BLU-805 AVB system, making it the first venue in Australia to benefit from the extensive audio-video bridging system. Australian-based Total Events Co. performed the installation.

The Soundweb London BLU-805 combines the proven and respected Soundweb London platform with the industry-supported AVB transport. The BLU-805 provides 64 incoming AVB channels and 64 outgoing AVB channels at 48kHz or 32 incoming AVB channels and 32 outgoing AVB channels at 96kHz. The stadium utilizes the HiQnet™ London Architect software for configuration, control and monitoring of the system. The audio is fed from the Soundweb London devices via BLU link to the HARMAN Crown CTS amplifiers in various rack rooms that drive the speaker system.

“The main audio feed is derived from the existing system control which is about 300 meters away from the new racks, so we used AVB to link from that system to the new zone,” explained Bill Busbridge, Managing Director of Total Events Co. “The BLU-805 picked up its feeds nicely. The BLU-805 also controls three function spaces and it certainly made our job a lot easier.”

Total Events Co. also designed, supplied, and installed the PA system for the new grandstand that includes JBL AWC129 and AWC82 all-weather loudspeakers. In addition, JBL Control 25AV speakers cover the walkways and JBL ceiling speakers cover the functions spaces.

“We installed fourteen JBL AWC129 speakers and sixteen JBL AWC82 speakers for the seating bowl and under balcony fills,” remarked Busbridge. “We chose them as they are robust, high powered and totally suitable for the application. They also fitted in well with the architect’s aesthetic requirements.”

Commenting on the simplicity the BSS Audio system offers, Busbridge said, “I’ve been back a couple of times to tweak the system and it is really simple to patch back in and make changes on the fly.”

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.

Red TX Captures Stephen Lawrence’s Tribute Concert

Broadcast audio specialists Red TX was at London’s O2 Arena on September 29th, 2013, to capture the broadcast audio for Unity – A Concert For Stephen Lawrence.

Artists including Rita Ora, Beverley Knight and Jessie J were joined by Emeli Sande, Ellie Goulding and Ed Sheeran for the concert, which was held to mark the 20th anniversary of Stephen’s death in southeast London.

Red TX was commissioned to handle the broadcast audio by Paul Dugdale, who was directing the project on behalf of ACME TV. Dugdale previously worked with Red TX during the summer when the company recorded The Rolling Stones in Hyde Park.
For the Unity concert, which was broadcast on BBC 2, Red TX used its main Red 1 outside broadcast vehicle, with engineers Tim Summerhayes and Ollie Nesham at the controls.

“We knew the event was going to be challenging due to a tight schedule and the shear amount of artists and tracks involved,” Paul Dugdale says. “As a director, it’s such a blessing having someone like Tim involved, not only because I know he’s great in those high pressure situations, but that you know the finished product will come out sounding amazing, too.”

Tim Summerhayes adds: “We recorded the concert as live because we had enough time to create snap shots during the sound check. We also had some time the following day to tidy up the audio before delivering it to The Farm where it was dubbed and made ready for broadcast on the evening of Tuesday October 1st. Although there were a large number of artists involved, it was a relatively straightforward project and we were all really pleased with the results.”

The concert was part of the SL20 Campaign, which is celebrating Stephen’s life with a series of awareness-raising events through the year. Funds from the show will go to The Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust, which aims to create brighter futures for young people from disadvantaged backgrounds.

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About Red TX:
Red TX provides a comprehensive concert recording and broadcast service to the music and television industries. The company has state-of-the-art mobile recording facilities and can handle projects of any size or complexity. As well as recording audio for broadcast, the company also records live music events for subsequent release on CD or DVD. It is headed by Ian Dyckhoff and Tim Summerhayes, both of whom have extensive experience in delivering high-quality audio for broadcast. www.red-tx.com

Extron Now Shipping Media Presentation Switcher with DTP Extension

Extron Electronics is pleased to announce the immediate availability of the MPS 602, a simple-to-use, six input media presentation switcher for digital and analog sources. It offers digital video switching with three HDCP-compliant HDMI inputs and one DTP 230 twisted pair input, and analog video switching with two RGB inputs that are digitized for distribution to the digital outputs. For increased flexibility, the MPS 602 includes a DTP 230 twisted pair output and an HDMI output that are switch-selectable. The DTP 230 input and output extend video, audio, and bidirectional control signals to DTP 230 transmitters and receivers, each over a single CATx cable up to 230 feet (70 meters). The MPS 602 also includes several audio switching and processing features, available power amplification, plus flexible control options for complete switching and distribution with local and remote display support. The MPS 602 is available in three models: a non-amplified version with a variable preamp output, the MPS 602 SA that adds a stereo 4/8 ohm power amplifier, and the MPS 602 MA with a mono 70 volt amplifier. more

DPA Microphones Help Tindersticks’ String Section Combat Spill

UK indie rock band Tindersticks is marking its 21st anniversary with a 12-date European tour that starts in France later this month. Among the key items of equipment at each show will be two DPA d:vote™ 4099 Instrument Microphones, which are being used on the band’s cello and double bass.

Jamie Hickey, Tindersticks monitor engineer since 2008, says he used DPA d:vote 4099 Instrument Microphones over the summer when the band performed seven shows as a taster for the 21st anniversary tour. One of these performances involved a special set at the Blue Balls Festival in Lucern, Switzerland, where the six-piece band was joined by a 17-piece string section.

“The venue had a stock of DPA 4061 Miniature Microphones that it was happy for us to use on the string section, but due to their omni polar pattern I didn’t think they were the best option for a string section that was playing alongside a rock band,” he says. “The supercardioid d:vote 4099 Instrument Microphones were a much better way to go because they could combat the amount of spill from other instruments on stage.

Hickey hired 17 d:vote 4099 Instrument Microphones from Tech-Serv Audio in the UK. These were used to mic five 1st violins, five 2nd violins, four violas and three cellos.

“They performed absolutely brilliantly and I was so impressed that I am now using them to mic Tindersticks’ regular cello and double bass players,” Hickey says. “As far as I am concerned there is no better option for close miking strings. I love their ease of use – if time is limited, which it inevitably is, you can essentially point the mic at the F hole and voilà, it sounds great.”

Hickey adds that DPA’s instrument clips, which he describes as ‘a work of genius’, were also a bonus because they were so easy to attach to the instruments.

“String players are very wary of anyone going within six feet of their instrument – let alone attaching anything to it,” he says. “On this occasion I showed the players the mics we were using and invited them to inspect the clip. The quality and feel of the material used reassured them that there would be no damage to their instrument.”

Tindersticks’ 21st anniversary tour will feature five additional string players who will join the band when they play the London Barbican. For that concert Jamie Hickey will once again be hiring additional mics from Tech-Serv Audio.

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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 on DPA Microphones, please visit www.dpamicrophones.com

ICONYX Delivers For New State-Of-The-Art International Terminal at LAX

Los Angeles, CA – October 2013… When the Port of Los Angeles began construction on the new, expanded Tom Bradley International Terminal at LAX three years ago, there was an unspoken understanding that the new structure would have to be an architectural tour-de-force, and a befitting ‘first impression’ for this iconic international city.

Indeed, anticipation turned to pride when the stunning new terminal was unveiled at a special commissioning ceremony on February 18th. Among the attendees were past and present Los Angeles mayors, along with airport officials, and the joint design team from Fentress Architects and HTNB Corporation.

Expansive and airy in design, the new terminal greets international travelers with a bright, open floor plan, high ceilings, and enough glass to pull in the welcome glow of southern California’s most ample natural resource.

With its towering walls and abundant reflective surfaces, the Fentress and HTNB teams knew early on that the new space would present some unique acoustical challenges. They turned to Whittier California-based VSA Associates, an acoustical consulting firm with more than 20 years’ experience and a client list that includes Hilton Hotels, Caltrans, and Arizona State University.

What VSA’s design team created was a sophisticated system based around ICONYX digitally steerable arrays from Renkus-Heinz. As Michael Kalmanson, Vice President at VSA Associates, explains, “the ICONYX systems allows us to direct sound exactly where we needed it to be, while avoiding difficult reflective surfaces or wasting energy outside of the listening areas.”

The new International Terminal features 14 ultra-modern gates with facilities to accommodate today’s larger, trans-oceanic aircraft like the Airbus A360 and Boeing 747-B. A combination of IC16 and IC8 arrays are deployed throughout the terminal, all fully concealed within the structural detailing. “We selected IC16s or IC8s, depending on ceiling height and how far we needed to throw the sound,” says Kalmanson.

But the undeniable crown jewel of the new terminal is the 150,000-square foot, $1.9 billion Antonio R. Villaraigosa Pavilion, home to premier dining, shopping and relaxation services, along with an equally impressive AV information hub.

“At 80 feet high with tons of glass, the pavilion was one of the more challenging spaces,” admits Kalmanson. “We opted for the ICONYX IC16 arrays there, and then dialed in the multiple steering lobes to target individual listening areas while ensuring that sound didn’t splash into the aisles or up onto the walls.”

Kalmanson continued, “The ability to define multiple steering lobes from a single array is one of the most compelling aspects of the ICONYX system—especially for a job like this. You can literally steer a portion of the array down 30 degrees, the next part down 15 degrees, and the final portion straight out. It’s extremely sophisticated equipment that offers an amazing amount of control.”

Pulling everything together for the expansive new terminal is a multi-zone paging system from Innovative Electrical Design [IED], which synchronizes the massive flight information displays and PA systems throughout the pavilion and terminals. The IED system combines the audio into zones for easy operation and adjustment during heavy traffic times.

“In most places, the ICONYX arrays are assigned to their own paging zone, but in some instances we combined multiple arrays into a group zone,” says Kalmanson. “Each zone is tuned perfectly for the space. We even have ambient noise compensation, which automatically raises or lowers the output depending on crowd noise.”

Hawthorn, CA-based Direct AV handled installation duties. Working closely with the architects, Direct AV ensured a highly finished installation, with minimal visual impact. As a result, all ICONYX arrays are flush mounted into existing structural elements throughout the terminal, with only their grills visible to visitors.

While Kalmanson comfortably credits the power of the ICONYX system as an essential ingredient in the successful design, he also notes the support provided by Renkus-Heinz directly.

“I simply don’t know of a better product for jobs like this than ICONYX,” he concludes. “But I’m also pleased that Renkus-Heinz was so involved, from modeling the spaces in EASE, to ensuring that we had exactly what we needed to meet our schedule from start to finish. I couldn’t be happier.”

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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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